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PokerListings.com got exclusive access to follow NHL goalie Roberto Luongo at the 2013 World Series of Poker Main Event. In 2012 both Roberto and his brother Fabio cashed in the Main Event, and this year Roberto tried to go even deeper. Follow Roberto's progress in this short poker documentary on PokerListings.com.
Roberto: I think my experience from a year at the main event was unforgettable. Every day that went by that I was still in it I was getting more and ore excited and I think I learned a lot from last year and I changed my game a little bit. And unfortunately, I busted out but I was able to cash and hopefully this year make it a bit further.
Commentator: Leaving behind a post season trading controversy, Vancouver Canucks goalie, Roberto Luongo came to the world series of poker main event in Las Vegas. Last year Lou and his brother Fabio both made deep runs and this year he let PokerListing.com follow him as he tried to go even deeper.
Roberto: The way I really started to enjoy poker was like I said, during the last lockout about seven to eight years ago. A lot of free time on my hands and I always loved to play cards when I was younger with my brothers or my friends or what not. So that was when Chris Moneymaker came out and won the main event. So it was on TV a lot and I really started getting into it and once I started liking the game online and playing with my friends that's when I started picking up some books. My love for the game just kept on growing and growing until I was faced with an opportunity to, with PlayNow to come down here and play in the main event so there was no way I was going to turn that down.
Jason: He does certainly help our site from a marketing standpoint. Having Roberto as part of the team, he talks poker with our players online and talks with them live at our events. He's very passionate about it. The first time we signed him, I went for lunch with him and I brought 10 poker books which I thought would be worth reading and he had read 6 of them already. He takes the game seriously, he spends a lot of time playing it. He plays with the boys on the team on the charter flights and when he's in Vancouver he plays on PlayNow. So he spends a lot of time honing his skills on the game and he takes it very seriously.
Roberto: Obviously, PlayNow.com I can't thank them enough for the experience the last couple of years. They've really realized many dreams of mine that I did not know if it would have been possible at this point without the. We had a meet and greet the other night with all the players that qualified and give them a chance to meet me but if I were there I would be more excited about playing in the tournament than meeting me.
Roberto: Well it's always nice to get through the first level and get the jitters out of the way, get in a rhythm and a groove. And right before the break, the last hand I was able to pick up a big hand and win over 10K so put me over 40k right now and that's good. I think the first level you just want to feel your way through, try to figure out what the table's like and the players are like and then you know pick up some hands. There's nowhere just obviously in the first few levels to make any place.
Fabio: You know playing in the World Series is always a nice experience. Especially when you get to experience with your brother, family, and friends. Yeah, we played a lot, a lot of cards and our Dad's a big card player so we grew up to see cards and we've always loved to play not mostly gambling but mostly the competition aspect about it. Obviously we were cheering for each other but there's always that "who lasted longer?" But like I said this series lasted longer but I'm sure if he doesn't make it into the money, he won't be...He'll still be disappointed about it.
Roberto: Well, obviously I'm a competitor. That's what I love the most about poker. But I think it's not just about the competition buts it's trying to outlast the other guy and making it far against the whole field. And it all ties into being an athlete and being competitive and trying to be better than the other guy. I think if you get deep in the tournament like this per se the final table, definitely the nerves will be up there. I'm not sure if they would be as high as the Gold Medal Game or against seven Stanley Cups Playoff, but they'd be right up there. There's a lot a stake and usually when there's a lot at stake that's when you feel the most nervous.
Fabio: You know hopefully I will be cheering him on and supporting him and hopefully things go well from the year on but if he loses it's still an experience and it's a tough tournament to go deep in.
Jason: His goal is always ultimately to win and he has spoken quite openly that he wants to win 3 things in life. He wanted to win the Olympic Gold Medal which he did. He wanted to win the Stanley Cup, he fell slightly short and he wants to win a World Series bracelet. So he takes the game seriously and he wants to go all the way.
Roberto: Well, I think for know my strategy for the rest of the day is just play tight. The way I played the first level, there's no real urgency the anti's are not in yet. So sit tight wait for good spots and obviously try not to put too many chips in unless you have the best hand.
Right off the start of the day I was running into some hands. Pretty much all day had the second best hand. I had some good starting hands. I played more plots than I usually do and for some reason I wasn't winning any of them. So it happens sometimes in poker but obviously disappointing especially the way things happened last year. I was hoping to make another round of it this year.
I had 9 of spades in a blind, top came out 8, 10, Jack. The turn a king of spades so I flushed on a straight draw. So I went all in, both guys fold a turn, a river and 2 hearts.
Jason: Wow Geez.
Roberto: 2 hearts.
Jason: Because he beats himself up over plays if he thinks he could have gotten another thousand dollars out of a bet. He feels that was a mistake in that hand. So he recalls every detail of it and he wants to learn from it and get better.
Roberto: That's what sports is about. You can be as ready as you want and play as good as you want. Sometimes it's just not meant to be and, fortunately, I feel like today was one of those days and just got to swallow it and then move on. Sometimes this sport, you're always trying to figure a way to be better and what you could have done differently. That goes without saying also in poker, but there's obviously more things than poker that are out of your control than in hockey. So disappointing but obviously gives you that hunger to come back whether that's next year or in the future for sure.