The last big star of the pre solver era and the hero of the biggest upswing in live poker history
In one interview Fedor said that he was in the top 5% of players in terms of his ability to work on his own game, and in the top 0.1% in terms of his ability to find the most useful information. Sounds about right: in 2012 he was still grinding $3 180 man tournaments (he dropped out of college at the same time), and in 2014 he won the WCOOP main event and settled for two years at the top of the Pocket Fives rankings.
Having conquered online, Holz headed to the high roller arena live. Between December 2015 and August 2016, he won:
- $1.5 million at WPT Alpha8 in Las Vegas.
- $3 million in a Triton Series event in the Philippines.
- Over $10 million at the WSOP, including $5 million for winning the $111,111 One Drop
- $1.5 million for winning the EPT Barcelona High Roller.
Fedor soon announced that he was "retiring" but has since won another couple of dozen million dollars. He still regularly appears at the most expensive online and live tables today. At the same time he runs the PokerCode School and rakes in millions in cryptocurrencies. Holz remains Germany's most successful player, with more than $30m in prize money live. And the 1993-bornretiree recalls his legendary upswing in numerous videos on his YouTube channel.
The ratio of luck to skill in poker? I've always explained it to my friends: if we play one heads-up game I'm a 55-45 favourite; if we play 100 I'll have a tangible advantage; if we play a whole year they have no chance of finishing in the black.
People are usually willing to grind, but too often play on autopilot, not digging into situations, not questioning their decisions during a game, not marking difficult hands for further analysis with peers or a solver, and so on. Raising your level in poker is very easy - all you have to do is not be lazy.
The problems are all the same: wrong opening ranges, not defending the big blind often enough, too few 3-bets and calls in position. These are very easy to fix. You can be wrong by one hand, but you can't be wrong by two or more.