Champions are fearless, resolved, focused. With everything on the line, the greatest heroes consistently conjure victory out of seemingly hopeless situations. At the poker table, the willingness to risk it all is confounded by the uncertainty of what may happen. Those players who attack at t…

There are a plethora of poker tournaments that take place all around the world. Occasionally, a big series might visit your hometown. Such was the case for me in August 2014, when the World Series of Poker Circuit series visited West Palm Beach, Florida, just a few miles away from my home.

Phil Hellmuth, the World Series of Poker's most accomplished player, has 14 WSOP gold bracelets on his poker résumé. Only two of them have come from a game other than Texas hold 'em.

Poker beginners live in a sea of uncertainty. They know what cards they have, but that's about it. They don't know what to expect opponents to have. They don't know how to interpret betting. Every pot is a guessing game.

I want to share a hand from 2014's World Series of Poker $1,500-buy-in Monster Stack event. This tournament is different from other $1,500 events in that every player starts with an overly deep stack (15,000). This hand was just the third of the day.

While playing in April's $2,700-buy-in Borgata Spring Poker Open Main Event in Atlantic City, I found myself in a tricky spot on the river.

We often talk ourselves into decisions that feel immediately gratifying, even to our detriment in the long term. In a game of uncertainty such as poker, another element can push us into such behavior: our ability to imagine the future.

I recently traveled to Malta to play the European Poker Tour events. Up until the last day of the series, I was roughly even on the trip, cashing in the 10,000-euro high-roller event but losing all of my other tournaments. The following hand took place in the 5,000-euro six-handed turbo even…

Our negative experiences weigh more and endure longer than their positive counterparts. In my years of coaching poker players, I have seen this phenomenon cause numerous students to study the big pots they lose and quickly forget hands they win. But on the felt, there is just as much to lear…

One of the things that separate professional poker players from amateurs is risk tolerance. It's human nature to avoid risk, and amateur players tend to play poker in a style that they think will limit their downside.

The Mid-States Poker Tour rolled through Colorado recently and I made my obligatory donations to the prize pools. Early in the first event - a $360-buy-in, no-limit tournament with a $100,000 guaranteed prize pool - I called off most of my stack on the turn with a measly pair of deuces. Some…

To play poker perfectly, you must not only know your opponent's hand, but you must also know his mind. At the final table of the Colorado Poker Championship main event a few months ago, my friend Frank Yakubson found himself in the craziest hand I have ever witnessed. And he played it perfectly.

The main event of the L.A. Poker Classic is one of the most anticipated tournaments of the year on the World Poker Tour. It’s the tour’s last remaining $10,000 freeze-out event — the Bellagio has made its $10,000 event a re-entry tournament — and first place always exceeds $1 million. I won …

In competition we tend to seek heroic outcomes more than humdrum victories. We often play purposefully toward a flashy, newsworthy conclusion that we have designed. This common human drive is treacherous, though, because it can make us only see the cues we want to see: signs that our big pla…

I recently played a European Poker Tour event in Deauville, France, a beautiful city that looks like it’s straight out of Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast.” I made a deep run in the high-roller event and had an opportunity for a strong finish, but I lost a few coin-flip situations once we reac…

I have become a regular in a locals-only $1-$2 no-limit game held weekly in the back of a pizza place. It’s been fun playing cards with a handful of guys ranging from ski bums to business owners. My favorite thing about poker is that it’s a game of people, and adjusting to varying levels of …

Last summer, my friend Dan Smith played a pair of major hands against an opponent who held pocket aces both times. The two hands made the World Series of Poker telecast not only because of their significance, but also because of the agonizing pace. Smith’s opponent, the young Aaron Kaiser, w…

I recently traveled to Australia to play the $10,000-buy-in World Series of Poker Asia Pacific Main Event. When play began, there were only four other players at my table. Everyone seemed to be playing a tight-aggressive strategy, except for one player who was clearly trying to win every pot…

I recently had the pleasure of traveling to Prague for World Poker Tour and European Poker Tour events. I’ve found that, compared with players in the United States, European players are generally much more aggressive.

There's a move in poker that is seldom executed, doesn't have a name, is only applicable in one specific situation and has a rate of success that's near zero. In fact, in my decades of playing poker, I've only seen it work twice. One of those triumphs happened a few years ago in $1-$2 no-lim…

For all the diverse complexity in poker strategy, there are really only two types of bets: value bets (bets you make because you believe you have the best hand and want to get called) and bluffs (bets you make because you believe you don’t have the best hand, and you don’t want to be called)…

I recently read a new poker book written by a well-known pro (hint: he's the best tournament player in online poker history) and jotted down a note in the left-hand column: “I may be giving too much credit to players who don't raise preflop.”

After Jack Salter finished runner-up to Scott Davies in the 2014 World Series of Poker Asia-Pacific, Salter said that he was disappointed with how he played the final hand. I couldn't help but wonder how he could have played it differently. Could he have possibly folded? Would I have folded …

A lot of the chips you accumulate in poker tournaments — especially soft tournaments and tournaments with small buy-ins — will come from getting maximum value from your strong hands, but occasionally you’ll need to run a well-timed bluff. I played a hand in the 3,500-buy-in event at the WPT …

We feel most comfortable and focused when we are in control of a situation. At the poker table, a cold run of cards or a table full of tough opponents can make us feel uneasy and powerless. Under such conditions, many players become impatient and try to force a win.

A lot of the chips you accumulate in poker tournaments — especially soft tournaments and tournaments with small buy-ins — will come from getting maximum value from your strong hands, but occasionally you’ll need to run a well-timed bluff. I played a hand in the 3,500-buy-in event at the WPT …

I was fortunate enough to win a World Series of Poker bracelet back in 2013, but not before making some of the toughest poker decisions of my career. One of those decisions came when Bobby Rooney put me to the test by moving all in. But before I get to that, let me set the stage.

I recently returned from my first poker cruise hosted by Ante Up Magazine. I taught three hour-long seminars, each one starting at 9 a.m., a time of day when normal cruisers do things such as eat breakfast or go on excursions. After doing my own shore excursions around noon each day, I’d the…

Human brains are excellent pattern detectors, able to predict the future results of many events. All our lives, we consider the potential outcomes of situations and weigh the possibilities to make decisions. Usually, we avoid the biggest risks — such as anything that could be life-threatenin…