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How to be a professional gambler
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oldnemesis Offline
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Post: #76
RE: How to be a professional gambler
(04-21-2011 02:07 PM)LÉtranger Wrote:  But America is the land of freedom ! I don't understand !

It never was. Just forget about what US constitution says and look on the laws, including case laws. The only real freedom you have here is to own a gun, and that seems to be the only freedom a lot of people are concerned about.

With all the casino money behind, do you think online gambling is something they really want to legalize? If you do, I have some gold mine stocks for you to buy.
04-21-2011 05:24 PM
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CJ Offline
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Post: #77
RE: How to be a professional gambler
"Gambling is a hard way to make an easy living".

When friends of mine asked me about getting into it, that's what I'd say. Sure making as much as $6K in one weekend was awesome, but the work and frustration that goes into hitting a good score like that... not sure if I'd do it all the same way again.
04-22-2011 10:49 AM
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glassjawed Offline
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Post: #78
RE: How to be a professional gambler
Honestly, this situation is really bad. It will basically kill poker in the U.S. Live play may increase in the short run but this is setting a bad precedent for other countries. They´re looking at possibly regulating online gambling in the U.S. at some point but it could take years, if it ever happens. At the moment, U.S. players who had money in the states are in a state of limbo. Although the government has said they plan to return deposits, I don´t know what the stance will be with winnings and non-paid taxes, the poker sites have said they will return the money to U.S. players soon. I can personally verify that they are at least still conducting normal business for people outside the U.S. I am still working on and withdrawing money from Pokerstars and Full Tilt. There is also still a good amount of action on the sites, 3\4 of the players on Pokerstars were not from the U.S. after all so online poker is still running strong for the rest of the world.

I´m very fortunate I decided to permanently leave the U.S. last year partially to avoid this potential situation, but there are a lot of players who are now stuck without jobs. It is particularly bad for people who recently filed taxes on winnings they may never receive. I´ve been following this situation closely since last Friday and although it´s terrible for the U.S., it actually isn´t too devastating for online poker worldwide. Surprisingly, there is still a lot of action and lots of markets still emerging in other parts of the world. I expect these U.S. sites to start focusing their attention to these markets to attract a new player base which may be beneficial in the long run.
04-22-2011 07:02 PM
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kimleebj Offline
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Post: #79
RE: How to be a professional gambler
(04-21-2011 03:03 PM)CJ Wrote:  I started playing in 2005, ... . All in all, I'd estimate I had lost over $10,000 (all online) by the time I quit donating money.

In December of 2007, ... throughout the year, ending with me up about $20K.

Most pro gamblers were born sharp. They have a natural inclination to get an advantage, and do not play badly for extended periods.

Tournaments can be very risky. But single table tournaments ("sit-and-go's") were safe and very lucrative. During the boom, any reasonable player could make six figures. You discussion displays a gambler's mentality that fails to distinguish expectation from fluctuation. You never "earned" $5K in a day. You only earned a few hundred bucks and got lucky for the rest.

I trust Full Tilt and PokerStars to return the money. The IRS has better things to do than chase gamblers, mostly losers.
04-22-2011 10:42 PM
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CJ Offline
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Post: #80
RE: How to be a professional gambler
(04-22-2011 10:42 PM)kimleebj Wrote:  You never "earned" $5K in a day. You only earned a few hundred bucks and got lucky for the rest.

You're quite mistaken to think that "luck" had anything to do with my meager "success" playing poker. You don't win multiple tournaments, just through luck. I excelled playing live primarily 40-120 players, and became pretty solid at TID'ing the 45 player SNGs on FTP to supplement my bankroll.

As for "extended poor play" those losses were incurred rapidly in cash games, when I admittedly was playing at insane stakes for my level of knowledge (we're talking as absurd as $40/$80 here). I'm quite positive they wouldn't have happened had I played strictly tournaments from the start.
04-22-2011 11:52 PM
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Gringo Offline
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Post: #81
RE: How to be a professional gambler
I just cannot play tournaments anymore. It used to be all I would play but I fell in love with cash games a few years back and it's that or nothing for me now. Playing for hours on end in a tourney only to make nothing is a nightmare.
04-23-2011 09:12 AM
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thegmanifesto Offline
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Post: #82
RE: How to be a professional gambler
glassjawed -

"3\4 of the players on Pokerstars were not from the U.S."

That is surprising.

"It is particularly bad for people who recently filed taxes on winnings they may never receive. "

That is downright brutal.

"there are a lot of players who are now stuck without jobs."

Can't they just split the US? Wouldn't that be an easy fix?

- MPM
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(This post was last modified: 04-23-2011 10:08 AM by thegmanifesto.)
04-23-2011 09:57 AM
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CJ Offline
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Post: #83
RE: How to be a professional gambler
Ha, just tried a dollar rebuy and add-on tournament for the hell of it online. I only had "points" on the site, so I could not rebuy or add-on. Roughly 200-220 players, I reached the final 11, then ran AT into AK in the blinds, and then, shortly after, on the final table ran 8s into Kings, now I remember why I gave this stuff up! Your sanity is at stake every tourney.

(04-23-2011 09:57 AM)thegmanifesto Wrote:  "there are a lot of players who are now stuck without jobs."

Can't they just split the US? Wouldn't that be an easy fix?

One of my old "online" poker buddies, Jymaster, had noted this, "How does everyone become Canadian so fast???" on his profile. Rhetorical, as he's from Michigan... err was, I guess. There's ways around, just use your imagination.
04-23-2011 03:24 PM
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kimleebj Offline
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Post: #84
RE: How to be a professional gambler
(04-22-2011 11:52 PM)CJ Wrote:  You're quite mistaken to think that "luck" had anything to do with my meager "success" playing poker.

I don't think you were lucky, because an average player would have lost by year-end. But there were plenty of $100 single table tournaments. They would last an hour, but you would often get knocked out halfway. And you could easily play two or more at once, at least four per hour. At a 10% ROI, that's $40 per hour. And the fluctations are quite mild.

Alternatively, some guys would play eight $1-$2 no-limit tables at once (playing tight), earning $5 per hour per table. There were plenty of weak opponents in no-limit games after midnight and on weekends.

The good pros discussed datamining software to find weak opponents and heads-up displays to use the information. They discussed the best type of monitors for playing eight tables simultaneously. I'm not saying you were bad or lucky. I'm just saying the naturally gifted guys approached the game differently and profited significantly.
04-23-2011 04:49 PM
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glassjawed Offline
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Post: #85
RE: How to be a professional gambler
(04-23-2011 09:57 AM)thegmanifesto Wrote:  "there are a lot of players who are now stuck without jobs."

Can't they just split the US? Wouldn't that be an easy fix?

I think for most people, leaving the U.S. is much more difficult than the average traveller on this forum. For one, some have commitments and things they are tied down to like family, relationships, university, other jobs etc. I guess they haven´t heard about mini relationships yet. Then there´s lots of players who were pros but still made less than 100k a year, for them, it might not be worth it to move to a new country by themselves if they can get another job for 60k in the US. There´s Canada, but it´s going to be difficult to get residency there as a gambler. Some people have a lot of their money frozen now and who knows when they will get it back and may now be scared to ever do this seriously as a main source of income.

Then there are cultural dilemmas. Lots of Americans only speak English, and can´t wipe their ass without someone holding their hand to name one. Lots of people have misconceptions of countries outside the U.S. as well. Some people have low openness to experience. It goes on. Basically I don´t expect lots of them to pull the trigger and leave the U.S. What might happen though is some figure out ways to cheat the system and play from the U.S.
04-23-2011 06:08 PM
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thegmanifesto Offline
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Post: #86
RE: How to be a professional gambler
(04-23-2011 06:08 PM)glassjawed Wrote:  
(04-23-2011 09:57 AM)thegmanifesto Wrote:  "there are a lot of players who are now stuck without jobs."

Can't they just split the US? Wouldn't that be an easy fix?

I think for most people, leaving the U.S. is much more difficult than the average traveller on this forum. For one, some have commitments and things they are tied down to like family, relationships, university, other jobs etc. I guess they haven´t heard about mini relationships yet. Then there´s lots of players who were pros but still made less than 100k a year, for them, it might not be worth it to move to a new country by themselves if they can get another job for 60k in the US. There´s Canada, but it´s going to be difficult to get residency there as a gambler. Some people have a lot of their money frozen now and who knows when they will get it back and may now be scared to ever do this seriously as a main source of income.

Then there are cultural dilemmas. Lots of Americans only speak English, and can´t wipe their ass without someone holding their hand to name one. Lots of people have misconceptions of countries outside the U.S. as well. Some people have low openness to experience. It goes on. Basically I don´t expect lots of them to pull the trigger and leave the U.S. What might happen though is some figure out ways to cheat the system and play from the U.S.

Good points.

How do they tell if you are gambling from the US or not?

Is it by ip address?

If I was one of these cats, I would just hook a beach crib in Baja, surf and gamble.

And drive back whenever you needed to.

- MPM
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http://www.thegmanifesto.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/michaelporfirio

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Grew up with gorillas, you grew up on Twitter, don’t care if you follow me.

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04-24-2011 07:32 AM
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glassjawed Offline
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Post: #87
RE: How to be a professional gambler
They check your ip address and you also need a foreign address and bank account linked to that address if you are going to say you are from another country. They might require you to submit some other documentation when you cash out. There are ways around it like using a VPN to mask your ip and obtaining a foreign address, but you would also need a foreign bank account linked to that address which could be difficult. Then there´s the issue of getting that money into the U.S. It´s risky and a painful process.

There are guys in Northern NY and souther Texas\Cali that are talking about commuting to Canada and Mexico just to work.
04-24-2011 09:26 AM
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glassjawed Offline
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Post: #88
RE: How to be a professional gambler
(04-24-2011 09:26 AM)glassjawed Wrote:  They check your ip address and you also need a foreign address and bank account linked to that address if you are going to say you are from another country. They might require you to submit some other documentation when you cash out. There are ways around it like using a VPN to mask your ip and obtaining a foreign address, but you would also need a foreign bank account linked to that address which could be difficult. Then there´s the issue of getting that money into the U.S. It´s risky and a painful process.

There are guys in Northern NY and souther Texas\Cali that are talking about commuting to Canada and Mexico just to work.

Another thing is lots of these guys never paid taxes so anyone with a lot of money will have the IRS at their door.
04-24-2011 09:31 AM
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thegmanifesto Offline
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Post: #89
RE: How to be a professional gambler
glassjawed -

"There are guys in Northern NY and souther Texas\Cali that are talking about commuting to Canada and Mexico just to work."

Yeah, I would think so.

Plus, there is affordable housing on the Mexican side.

- MPM
The Guide to Getting More out of Life
http://www.thegmanifesto.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/michaelporfirio

Michael Mason's Facebook

The G Manifesto Facebook Page

Grew up with gorillas, you grew up on Twitter, don’t care if you follow me.

"Can't be like the rest", is the most I'll confess.
04-24-2011 10:13 AM
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Chaz Offline
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Post: #90
RE: How to be a professional gambler
I wanted to chime in here on how I got started as a pro gambler (advantage player) -- it was the "easy" route (but still a bit of a pain in the ass), and that was hustling lots of coupons and promotions. I was lucky because when I started, I did not have a bankroll of more than 500 bucks, but that was all that was needed. The reason why players didn't need much of a bankroll was that these two enterprising dudes had published coupon books chock-full of casino coupons, which they sold for 40 bucks. So the move was to buy a few coupon books (or a few dozen books, if you had enough cash) and then drive around all day to all these casinos, and play all the coupons. And the coupons were decent enough, like $25 and $50 matchplay coupons (where you are paid 2:1 if you win), so for a while the E.V. (expected value) on the coupon play was about $250+ per day, minus the expenses of gas and food and coupon books. And as I recall, a book had about one weeks worth of coupons, so that expense was not too bad. And gas was cheaper then, too. These coupons were valid for a year, so the guys who did it, say, 25 days per month for a full year made pretty decent cash. Say roughly $6k+ (net) per month for 12 months is $72k+. Some folks did better: it was possible to "double-dip" some casinos, which meant going there on both day and night shifts, increasing E.V. Some casinos had their own coupons that were easy for players to photocopy, and then play a lot of them. (This is not quite legit to do.) Another guy bought 1,000 books (for $30 each) and had a team of guys out there playing coupons, and the team players would give him 20% of their winnings. And obviously the 2 guys who put out the books did pretty well, without having to actually play any coupons at all!

Along the way, there were some juicy promotional games that increased E.V. A few no-brainer promos, like when a casino would give an extra $25 for a tie on a baccarat for just playing $5 minimum bets on it. (Tie pays 8-1, so the casino was paying out $40 + $25 bonus = $65 per tie, instead of the normal $40) The E.V. on that game was something like $250 per hour! And then there were the more typical promos requiring a large bankroll, such as when blackjacks paid 2:1 instead of 3:2.

Those were the good old days! I know the casinos have sharpened up (a little bit) to the extent that I won't see any juicy coupon books anymore! The one from the Las Vegas Advisor is very weak, I think -- just $10 matchplays and stuff like that, which would be too much time and trouble to run around and play -- that is, if someone was only playing coupons to gain the advantage over the house.

Beyond coupons and promotions (and tournaments), things get a bit more hairy, like some of the other posters have said. As far as casino table games go, even playing with a 3% edge on 3-card poker (when the dealer consistently flashes their hole card) can be a very wild ride. And a 3% edge is considered strong! It is, but there are still negative fluctuations which can be nasty.
04-24-2011 08:04 PM
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kimleebj Offline
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Post: #91
RE: How to be a professional gambler
(04-24-2011 08:04 PM)Chaz Wrote:  I got started as a pro gambler (advantage player)

I won't see any juicy coupon books ... from the Las Vegas Advisor

Ah, the good ole days! The problem is that people like you had dozens of subscriptions to the Las Vegas Advisor just for the coupons. They had to degrade the coupons, but the tourist information is still great.

There was also Flush Attack, where you could make a quick few bucks by just playing the machine when it was flashing. Then people figured out how to make money when it wasn't flashing. Then they figured out other machines. Then they figured out how to use coupons on machines.

So smart poor guys could reliably support themselves with coupons, while learning machines, blackjack, poker, sports, one card poker, and exploiting various promotions. They didn't stay poor for long.
04-24-2011 08:54 PM
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CJ Offline
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Post: #92
RE: How to be a professional gambler
(04-23-2011 04:49 PM)kimleebj Wrote:  I'm not saying you were bad or lucky. I'm just saying the naturally gifted guys approached the game differently and profited significantly.

I was always reluctant to get back into those because of the quicker swings, plus my game lacked the proper aggression for that when I was more serious about things. I did mix in some DONs online for awhile (got enough points to get this monitor!), but despite starting off fairly well, I went on a nasty string of bubbling and decided to stick to tournaments. Plus, the $50 games had too many nits to make it worth playing.


Back to other gambling, this guy - http://walterfootball.com/ is a pretty good handi-capper for the NFL season. His NBA picks were solid this year too. I wouldn't follow any of his picks in the play-offs though, seems to be where he gives back a chunk of his roll.
04-24-2011 11:07 PM
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Chaz Offline
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Post: #93
RE: How to be a professional gambler
kimleebj,

I agree that the Las Vegas Advisor is solid. It's a good source of information! I don't really know about their coupon book -- last time I looked at it was a few years ago, and it looked like $5 and $10 and $25 matchplays, and some good food and drinks coupons, too.

The book I used was quite different (not from Las Vegas). I believe the Las Vegas casinos are sharper, more sophisticated. (For example, they probably wouldn't be dumb enough to run that baccarat tie bonus promo that I mentioned above. They would at least do the math on it first, or hire someone to do it, like "The Wizard of Odds")
04-24-2011 11:27 PM
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Agent_GQ Offline
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Post: #94
RE: How to be a professional gambler
Has anyone here ever been a bookie or worked for a bookie? Would be interesting to hear some stories if so.
04-25-2011 12:26 AM
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kimleebj Offline
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Post: #95
RE: How to be a professional gambler
(04-24-2011 11:07 PM)CJ Wrote:  my game lacked the proper aggression
...
I went on a nasty string of bubbling

Sorry, but a poker game without aggression sucks. A strong strategy rarely bubbles. My books specifically address "bubble factors".

Quote:this guy ... is a pretty good handi-capper

No way. Real pros don't buy or sell picks. Real pros build databases, shop numbers, play weird bets (halftimes, propositions), get banned from sports books, and resort to "beards". Read Chaz's posts to get a feel for a real pro mentality.
04-25-2011 08:17 AM
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Chaz Offline
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Post: #96
RE: How to be a professional gambler
Kimleebj, you are definitely the more pure pro, who is also multi-faceted. I just happened to come across some good opportunities, and followed in the footsteps of the more talented guys who came before me. I'm glad that there was all the published material and online stuff available! I would have struggled without it. Much thanks to you and to all of the giants of advantage play over the years!
04-25-2011 04:25 PM
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CJ Offline
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Post: #97
RE: How to be a professional gambler
(04-25-2011 08:17 AM)kimleebj Wrote:  Sorry, but a poker game without aggression sucks. A strong strategy rarely bubbles. My books specifically address "bubble factors".

No offense taken. When Jymaster showed me the fatal non-aggression flaws in my game, I went on another hot streak online, final tabling a $55 & $33 tourney in one night, to the tune of around $6K. Quit my crappy job, and gave poker another try for a couple months. Good times. I kept coming close after that, but got frustrated with all the near big cashes and went back to the real world of work yet again. The issues with tourney is the excessive volume you have to play, how time consuming it can be, and going on stretches where you make nothing.

I would still be interested in reading your books though.


Quote:No way. Real pros don't buy or sell picks.

Walt's picks are free, listed before the games. All his stats over the years are also listed. He's legit, but only bets between $100-$800 per game, with the $800 bets being few and far-between, and generally losers. I'm not sure he'd be a "pro" by your definition, since he keeps it simple and low risk.
04-25-2011 05:01 PM
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Gringo Offline
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Post: #98
RE: How to be a professional gambler
I know a lot of people making a living from poker cash games but never tournaments, seems like too much time invested to me for what is essentially a crapshoot.
04-25-2011 06:39 PM
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kimleebj Offline
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RE: How to be a professional gambler
(04-25-2011 06:39 PM)Gringo Wrote:  I know a lot of people making a living from poker cash games but never tournaments, seems like too much time invested to me for what is essentially a crapshoot.

It's a reward/risk tradeoff. If you can tolerate the risk then it's an issue of expected hourly earnings. Ten-player tournaments typically pay {5,3,2} to the top three finishers at the table. That's pretty safe. Large tournaments are risky, but attract an unskilled recreational field. They take many hours to play, which sucks in terms of flexibility, but gives you a bigger edge.

To a large extent, professional online poker is about software, game and opponent selection, and gaining weight. I guess that's true in real life. Doyle Brunson once won $1MM by losing 100 pounds within two years, but cumulatively lost money on weight bets.
04-25-2011 07:51 PM
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MacNcheez Offline
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Post: #100
RE: How to be a professional gambler
2 gamblers take Tropicana Casino for more than $11M

http://www.usatoday.com/money/industries...p=obinsite
07-27-2011 02:54 PM
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