Friday, April 29, 2016

Making a Minon Part 3: The Training Begins, Coaching, Investing.

In case you're late to the party, I'm writing a series about a relatively unknown poker player on his path from Poker Industry Professional to World Champion. Or at least, somewhere in between.

If you need to catch up you can read the full explanation here, and part two here. Go ahead, I'll wait.

Okay, excellent. Now that we're all on the same page, Steven (our horse extraordinaire) has started his coaching regimen to prepare for the big game. I solicited advice from several people I respect and admire in the industry, as well as reading more than a fair share of training recomendations and we came to the mutual conclusion that poker intellect is only a fraction of the necessary preparation he would need to make.

Onward to victory!

Steven is no spring chicken by poker standards. At 31, he's borderline.. dare I say it? Old. On top of his "advanced" age, he's grown comfortable in married life enjoying more time with pizza than the treadmill. We know that the stamina it takes to win a tournament like the Main Event shouldn't be underestimated. If the plan is to go all the way to the final table of the longest poker tournament in the world, he'd need to be as healthy as possible. Following a full work up from the doc we were happy to hear that his only physical ailment is slightly elevated cholesterol followed by the recommendation to lose 5 to 10 pounds. Otherwise, he's in great shape for competition. At least, at an air conditioned poker table.

I still don't know if poker classifies as a "sport". Regardless, this still holds true.

Part one of his path to victory is to log his daily nutrition in an attempt to make over his diet from carb laden junk food to lean proteins and copious amounts of fresh vegetables. He's entering his third week of logging food on the Lose It app and has already been successful in breaking a long-term relationship with soda. This has not only lead to his increased energy, but has become contagious and inspired me to make similar changes. As an official Minions railbird this summer, I suppose I'll need stamina too.

Coach, guru, poker player and indoor sunglass connoisseur, Jonathan Little. 

Steven is starting with training videos on by Jonathan Little. I don't know Jonathan very well on a personal level, but his resume speaks for itself. I've taken a few Ante Up Cruises where he was a guest pro and I've attended a class or two by him. He teaches well but can get a little bit wrapped up in himself when he's conveying information and it can make his point hard to follow. He is literally too smart on subjects he's passionate about and his meticulous methodology takes some work to get into. With all that being said, his site was recommended to us repeatedly by players at different levels of success so it seemed a good place to start.

Steven's plan for the week is to watch 6 full length videos relevant to deep stack tournament strategy, participate in one of Little's "webinars", read a handful of corresponding articles and keep some loose notes about each for me to relay here. He will then apply what he's studied in online tournaments on and any opportunity for live tournament play during the week. He usually tries to catch a nightly at Aria, Venetian or The Orleans on one of this nights off. Not only is he soaking up information and looking to improve his game, but he's objectively critiquing the various training methods we're investigating from a consumer standpoint.

Each week we will add another element of study, coaching and practical application leading right up to the main event. You'll be able to follow all the details here. Feel free to make recommendations and suggestions via comment or through direct message.

Steven may be your golden egg.

Though Steven's participation as a 2016 Minion is not dependent on him selling shares, anyone who would like to invest and own a piece of all 4, 5 or 6 runners this year should contact Poker Monkey.
Check out his blog here. $200 gets you one share of each of the Minions. Its a pretty simple breakdown: The players keep 35% of anything they cash, minus the 10K buy-in. The investors split the 65% plus Buy In equally. If you're going to gamble on staking a player this summer, why not buy a piece of several with one bullet?

If I'm ever on death row and get the opportunity to make a "last meal" request, this place wins. And it isn't even close.

In the next blog I will deviate from the poker standard to talk a little bit about my current love (for the next 9 weeks), Game of Thrones. As well as my new time sink, the Korean MMORPG Black Desert Online. My passion for the greatest steak house in Vegas, the all new Alder & Birch. And of course, an update on the Minion training.


  1. Great plans, and I'm enjoying reading about it. Good luck!

  2. Jennifer I am with you on Alder and Birch - that place is fantastic.

    Not even overpriced which was very refreshing.

    Good Luck to Steven too!