Ethan "Rampage" Yau looked like a poker dream coming true in front of our eyes. He was one of the first to start a poker vlog on YouTube, quickly gained popularity, and just as quickly, rose from low limits to the highest.

In the summer of 2021, he posted videos with $2/$5 blinds, and just a year later, he became a regular at expensive streams at the Hustler casino. There the fairy tale continued and over the next year he won almost $2 million on streams alone.

Giveaways with his participation began to regularly appear in news reports. One of the highlights of last year was his bluff in a huge pot, when he bet over $600k on the river and his opponent folded a top set.

In recent days, Hustler Casino has been breaking live records, pulling off crazy bluffs and finding out how much money Durrrr owes Daniel Cates.

Ethan even won expensive tournaments, although they were never his main specialization. At the end of 2022, he received almost $900k for first place in the WPT High Roller tournament.

Rampage sold 35% of shares on the StakeKings website, but got knocked out at the first levels. After that, at the very end of the late registration, I re-entered (without shareholders) and took 1st place.

Ethan showing unprecedented generosity. "Everyone who took shares on the first entry will receive a full refund and 2x on top”.

However, as often happens in poker, sooner or later, the upswing ends and the player is faced with a harsh reality. Over the past 4 months, Ethan has lost $800k.

The main downswing came in two sessions, in one of which he lost $300k, and in the other – almost $500k.

Rampage wrote that the constant emotional swing between winning and going completely broke ultimately led to complete collapse. He played almost entirely on my own steam, but for complete transparency, I will write that the exact minus was $547k.

At the time, the house he live in was worth less. The downswing even had him thinking about a short break from poker.

However, Ethan did not listen to his own advice. In February he returned to Hustler and again finished at the bottom.

After this session he wrote a long blog post :

Today is February 16, 2024 – sitting on the ground staring at the wall/ceiling of my bed room in Southern California, -$84,000 today on the Hustler stream.

I’m amidst a $1,000,000 “downswing” in poker over the last several months. By far the longest I’ve had a losing streak for and by far the most amount of dollars I’ve lost. Yet both, are nothing special – the duration and dollar amount. See, I’ve been playing a dangerous game – playing way above my bankroll and infrequently in volume- now both have reared its ugly head at the same time and I’m paying the price. The real reason why I put “downswing” in quotes isn’t because of the lack of volume played nor high dollar amount, it’s self inflicted. Each and every single one of my biggest loss seems to be caused by a sprinkle of unfavorable card distribution mixed with a heavy dosage of self-destructive tendencies. It appears in tilt, gambling too hard, pushing too much action, etc.

Today, throughout the duration of the 6 hour live stream, I felt this familiar feeling bubble up numerous times. 5 and a half hours into the stream and one mistimed bluff later, this feeling culminated into a beautiful torching of money.. we were 15 minutes away from the stream ending. I was so close… yet I watched myself uncontrollably ignite $50,000 on fire in a series of poorly played, poorly executed poker hands that I had no rhyme nor reason to play.. other than to feel something? what is the reason for this, this anger, disgust? I was so close to surviving losing a small/breakeven amount, yet in a matter of minutes that opportunity vanished as I gave every single lovely person at my table a share of this tilt I was feeling – making them richer one by one.

In one hand on stream, Ethan entered the pot with and bet three barrels all-in on the river. The opponent thought for a long time with trips, but made a call.

In another, Ethan raised the river against Mike X, but was promptly called by a flush.

On the sad and quiet drive home, I can’t help but wonder… why??? What in the actual entire fuck is wrong with me? As the negative self talk simmered, I started to actually brainstorm. Maybe I’ve lost all respect for money and poker?? The one saving grace in my life was poker; yet this beautiful game I fell in love with is also the one that’s causing a lot of heartache and financial harm. I’ve documented my journey the past 5 years with poker – I’ve done nothing but try to stretch the limits of myself and boundaries with this game. Whether it’s through tournaments or high stakes cash games, I’ve tried to climb higher and higher in the challenge. Luckily, I've been able to succeed and survive, but this continuous climb makes me numb to the lower stakes and normalcy of this game. Actually there is no normal anymore, for the last 2 years, my “normal” was shot taking the biggest cash game or tournament buy in. Now that dopamine rush and thrill seeking nature is a never ending beast, always quenching for the next “shot” or opportunity to put 50-100% of my net worth on the table. And finally THEN, the game will feel like it’ll matter… until it’s over and we start over again.

The sad truth and realization is.. I’ve lost respect for the game and money throughout this journey. To be fair, who wouldn’t be? The stakes can be increased until infinity, the high of bluffing for a million dollars can never be attained again unless it’s a bluff for 2 million. All the catch a feeling? This doesn’t seem sustainable but so isn’t my downswing via lack of self control/discipline. And here I am, still sitting on my floor feeling like I’m at rock bottom again. Feeling like I have fucking Mount Everest to climb and all I have is a pair of shoes and ice picker to start.

I don’t know how many people can relate to this but I hope in some way, this style of writing/venting can help in your own situation. I truly appreciate all the friends/people that read these, it means more than you know to be 100% transparent and vulnerable yet also find some value through this. I certainly have a lot more soul searching and mindset problems to dig through, but this is as far as I’ve gotten on my 25 minute drive home after the losing session. Hope you have a wonderful day/night.

Much Love,

Ethan (Rampage) <3

After this confession, Ethan returned to Hustler. He played at the lowest limit ($20/$40) and again became the biggest loser of the session.

Ethan had no plans to stop. A $50/$100 HCL game ran with Francisco and Nik Airball. Rampage was one of the headliners.

Ethan won $280k in this session, putting a small dent in his losses.

He also got the biggest pot of the evening – a triple all-in preflop with against and .