Old dog learning new tricks

Old dog learning new tricks

I’m sure everybody knows a famous saying that goes: “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks”. Well… I’m here to disprove that!

Old dog, new trick

picture of an old dog
Picture of an old dog
© Neil Stoddart

So who’s our old dog and what’s the trick we are trying to teach him? In this story, I’m the old dog. Yes, you heard that right. I may be only 31 years old, but in terms of online poker, I’m leaning towards the older side. On top of that, I’m also playing Fixed Limit Hold’em, which most of the players from new generation doesn’t even know the rules for. Heck, most don’t even know it exists and there’s only a handful of sites that even offer limit games. More than a decade ago, when I was starting with poker, it was pretty much the other way around and No Limit games were just starting to grow and they were reserved for “gamblers” who were lacking thrill in standard limit poker variations. We know the situation now.

And playing is not the only thing I did in terms of poker, as I’ve been involved in the industry basically from the beginning either as an affiliate, website admin, sponsored pro or a freelance worker.

So we got an old dog, now we just need this new fancy trick to teach him. I’m sure you guys already figured out what’s that going to be, right? Or at least what’s 100% not it 🙂 Drum roll please… Yeah, its No Limit.

The Plan

So if I’m starting No Limit Hold’em in 2016 I better have a plan. And I do… To a certain degree. I will be starting with cash games, to get a base knowledge about NL, but my mid-term goal is to start playing tournaments as well. So before I continue, I’d like to expand a little bit on these two points.

So far when I was pitching my idea to poker friends, everyone was surprised why would I need base in NL. “Isn’t NL a base anyway?” And the answer is no. Not for someone, who played millions of hands of Limit Hold’em and only few thousands hands of big bet variant in his whole career. I really didn’t play much else besides my main game. Sure, a tournament here and there, but that’s pretty much it. Even though I’ll be starting from the beginning, I won’t be a complete noob about it. At least I know how to count outs and calculate pot odds! 😀 Understanding how poker works is also important, good discipline, bankroll shouldn’t be a problem either – I won’t be starting with NL2, rather with NL25 for example, etc…

Secondly why MTTs? Well that’s a pretty easy one… Because it’s (probably) the most profitable variant, where most recreational players are. What’s more to say, right? 🙂 Sure, there are some negative aspects of playing tournaments, some of which I was really against in the past, but I’ll never forgive myself, if I don’t even try them out. Of course I’m talking here about huge variance (I mean, we only care about the negative one) and MTTs are kind of a time sinkholes. Both of these things are sort of a big deal, but they are manageable with:

  • Selling/Swapping shares
  • Playing smaller fields
  • Twitch

At least that’s one paper 🙂 How it’ll work in real life, in real examples is whole other business. And if you are here for #MinRaiseMafia shenanigans, don’t you worry guys. Haven’t forgotten about you! 😉

New Poker Room

find myself a new home
Found myself a new home

Due to being a limit player and a sponsored pro, I had to play only on PokerStars all these years (not that I wanted to play anywhere else, it was the absolute best poker site for me anyway), but now I am forced to move. Did my research and decided to try out Unibet. It really seems the perfect site for someone in my position and they have to be doing something right, as Unibet is one of the few sites that is actually gaining players. I guess poker missions and challenges, no use of HUD at tables, no table selection, no chat box and 4 tables maximum is creating a recreational friendly environment. I like that. I like that a lot.

I’ll update you how I’m doing through posts here on coreysteel.eu, I’ll also be recording my progress every few weeks, making videos for YouTube. This way I can look back and see how much different I play at that moment and what kinda stupid mistakes I were making in the past. Hey, I even have a name already – Old dog, new trick 😀 And as promised, I’m returning to Twitch streamings. Will probably start with some video games before I jump into poker, though 🙂

So what do you think? Is this old dog capable of learning a new trick?