– I coach high stakes MTT regulars – ask me anything.
Since there has been a lot of talk lately about bad coaches and unreasonably expensive courses for thousands of dollars, I’ll tell you a few words about myself:
– I have the most advanced analysis of hand history. You send me your hands over a long sample size (around 100k) and I find the biggest leaks and explain in great detail how to fix them. It is much more effective than standard training. Last year alone, about 100 players used my services, some played micro-limits, but there were also regs with an average buy-in of $500 online.
– Several of my clients have earned more than $1 million online. We are talking about profit, and not about prize money, excluding buy-ins.
“Two of my clients played the last Triton series, one even made the final table of the $100k main.
– When I work with famous players, they have the opportunity to pay me after the fact and only if they are satisfied. I can afford such confidence, as I am the best in my business.
– I charge $250 an hour. As a rule, two hours are enough for a complete review of the base, during which I thoroughly study your game. Sometimes classes can stretch for three hours, during which time I manage to write a whole book about your errors :D
If you have questions about strategy or teaching methods – what to use and what to avoid? Feel free to ask, I'll try to help.
– What are the biggest leaks when moving from micro to medium limits? I'm pretty good at winning cheap tournaments, but my expensive exploits don't work anymore.
– There are a lot of players at the micros who can lose a stack at the most unexpected moment. Your exploits here, most likely, have nothing to do with it at all. Many players think they are playing an exploit, when in fact they are not. Not everyone understands that an exploit is a very complex strategy. If we do not take into account the most obvious examples, for example, playing against frank nits, then for more complex exploit solutions, you first need to have a good understanding of what GTO is.
If we talk about errors, then there are just a million of them. Among the most common post-flop wrong sizings. Almost no one plays big c-bets or overbets on the turn and river. Nobody uses small block bets either. I was also always surprised by how bad blind-to-blind play is at the micros. And I'm not even talking about post flop. Preflop, everyone has terrible ranges, although there is already enough material on this topic.
The most common exploit at the micros is “attacking when the opponent shows weakness”. So don't be afraid to delay c-bets or bet on the turn/river after a missed c-bet.
– What is the minimum stack you can 3-bet without all-in in MTT?
– In a BB situation against the button on chipEV, you can 3-bet without shoving in a depth of 20bb. At the final tables, it's even more difficult, you can play like that even with 15 or 14bb.
How many lessons do you need to take to really change the game? In other words, does it make sense to buy a Lamborghini if I only need the car for grocery shopping?
Two hours is enough to correct the most obvious mistakes. This is quite enough to seriously improve the game. Further, significant efforts and your own desire will already be required. Most of my clients already have an idea about the software – GTO Wizard, DTO, Preflop Academy, and so on. But with my help, they learn to work more effectively in programs.
How much did you earn playing poker yourself?
– Do you mean profit or prize money? I play on Stars as LlKE A G6 and won more than $2 million there, but that doesn't mean anything. I don’t disclose nicknames in other rooms, I can only say that I have a 6-digit profit, but a little less than a million. Some of my clients have made more than me.
– What is the best way to remember ranges and basic strategy?
– For many situations, it is important to understand the logic of decisions. WHY certain combinations should be 3-bet depending on the expected reaction of the opponent. Once you understand this, you no longer have to memorize everything in a row. Naturally, this does not apply to basic things like opening ranges. Here you need to focus on simple and easy-to-remember rules, for example, "from the button you need to open any unsuited cards with an eight" or "on the chipEV on the SB, you cannot fold any suited hands if no one has opened before you."
– What is your attitude about late registration in tournaments?
– The debate on this topic does not stop. First, you need to figure out why we are registering for the tournament? ROI? Winrate? Hourly? How much do we care about variance? Obviously, for the maximum ROI, you cannot skip the first levels. But in some cases, it is beneficial to enter late registration due to a small ICM bonus, as it will be very close to the money. The problem is that you can bust out very quickly, and you won’t even have time to “win back the rake”. If there were no rake in the tournaments, then late registration is an obvious choice.
– Why did you decide to earn money by training, and not by your own game?
– It's not easy to earn $250 per hour in MTT. In addition, I have limited choices due to restrictions in my country, and I do not want to move. I really like the stable income. I have been playing poker professionally for over 10 years. I liked the idea of working for a fixed fee and not worrying about two outs on the river :D
– What mistakes do cash game regulars make in tournaments?
– In short stacks, many. Cash players are great on the turn and river, they have a full range of block bets, 2x overbets, and so on. But at the same time, they can 3-bet all-in with some weird hand or open-shove JTs into the SB 12 blinds deep. Another common problem is playing in asymmetric stacks. How to play 8 to 15bb stacks on the button, SB, and BB when other players are deep stacked and using linear opening ranges.
Here, for example, is a completely unusual situation for any regular cash game. The CO opened with a stack of 40bb and the SB had 10bb.
– I play $1/$2 live and sometimes online. What is the most efficient way to work on a game?
– I would advise you to buy software like DTO Cash and play 50-100 hands every day in the simulator. It is very useful. Any complicated hands can be discussed in their discord. GTO Wizard is also suitable but may seem too complicated for an inexperienced player.
– I like watching tutorial videos and solving poker quizzes, but I just can't bring myself to open the solver. Are there any easy ways to get it right?
– If you don’t play at the highest level, you don’t need to analyze the hands in the solver yourself at all. Naturally, it would be nice to be able to do this too, but now there are enough simulators that already contain solver solutions for certain situations. Let's say you're wrong at 54bb deep on the CO vs the BB on an AQ9 board. You can spend 30 minutes and break down this specific hand in a number of ways. But it's much more efficient to open a simulator with ready ranges for CO vs. BB situations 50bb deep and play 20 random hands.
– What are the main differences between mid and high-stakes players?
– It is difficult to name something specific. There are too many moments in poker where you can screw up. If you make fewer mistakes than your opponents, you win money. In high stakes, players generally make fewer mistakes, so it’s more difficult to make money there. There is no secret knowledge here, errors can be completely different. For example, one strong regular might play worse in the BB against the SB, while another might not have enough turn-raising frequency. You can even find a micro-stakes player who outperforms reg high stakes in certain situations. True, in 100 other cases, he makes gross mistakes, and therefore cannot get higher.
– In modern poker, does it make sense to try to build a bankroll at the micros?
What does "make sense" mean? Is it possible to build a bankroll there? Yes. Can you make enough money there to seriously consider leaving your day job? No.
– What is the best way to start mastering the theory?
“Obviously, you should always start preflop. Not only opening ranges, which you just have to remember. But also 3-bets, 3-bet shoves, blind play, and so on. It is also important to understand how opponents will react to your actions. This will help to understand why certain actions are preferred with specific hands. Don't forget to ask yourself questions like "Will worse hands call me?" and “Can I get better hands to fold?”
As for post flop, focus on the most common situations. It doesn't really matter if you're bad post flop in 4-bet pots. It's much more useful to figure out how to play the button against the big blind 30bb deep.
Very useful are the "summary reports" that are available in both the GTO Wizard and the DTO. They allow you to study not specific flops, but give a summary of all flops with the highest check frequency or flops that should be played exclusively with small-sized continuation bets.
– Can you rate my stats – vpip 22.5 – pfr 14.5 – steal 35 – XR 16 – 3b 7 – f3b 48 – cb 57 – fcb 52?
– I can only say that it looks tight. But these are too general indicators to make an in-depth analysis. And the general c-bet is generally useless because its frequency is highly dependent on the specifics. Against the BB it should be over 80, against the SB it should be over 60, and against a position call it should be around 30. So the average won't work. In my analysis, I take into account thousands of different indicators. To draw any conclusions, you need at least 30k hands.
– What do you think about the new strategy for limping in the tournament?
– I love limps. But don't use them unless you're a top reg looking for a little extra EV.
– Does it make sense to look at the bb/100 win rate to estimate your level in tournament fields? If so, what should you focus on when climbing the limits?
– This will definitely give a more accurate estimate than ROI. If you have 7-8bb+, you can go higher. At the highest stakes, the ceiling is 10bb/100, at a distance it is almost impossible to show more. Even 3bb/100 on high stakes is a decent figure. And in tournaments for $10, where opponents in any hand can give a stack, you can even count on 20bb/100.
– How to play against opponents who open with 3x raises in the middle and late stages of the tournament? Just hang out? Does it make sense to 3-bet them as a bluff?
– I don't advise playing too tight against them, 3-betting light from time to time is also quite acceptable. There are a lot of players at the higher limits (mostly from Brazil) who deliberately use increased sizings to put the opponent in an unusual situation. And at the micro stakes, sizing tells are more obvious, and larger raises will, on average, be with a stronger range.
– How to play in the BB against amateurs who play with a PFR of 8-12%? Hide?
“Just imagine that they are sitting one position earlier. This will lower your defense range by 3-4%, but no more. Nothing extreme.