Published on June 7th, 2007 3:04 am EST

king interviewing the top poker playerOn our brother site, Poker King, we recently wrote an article describing an interview that we had with a very well-known live poker pro. The article seemed to surprise a number of people, who were perhaps unaware of the dire financial straits that a good number of well-known pros find themselves in. Being staked because they are already in a big amount of financial trouble is fairly commonplace. Mike Matusow once said that 50% of live poker pros are being staked in big tournaments, and he is not far off from the truth.

Well, to keep it balanced, we thought that we would post another interview that we did, this time with a prominent online player. We happened to catch up with this player during the dinner break of the 2nd day of the No Limit Hold'em $1000 rebuy. We happen to know this player personally, so he was fairly candid with us. Again, I asked him if we could post the conversation on our site, with his name removed, and he said that it was fine. Here you go:

Us: So how is the World Series going for you so far?

Him: The actual events, not so well so far, but hopefully that will change. Some of my friends here have done really well so far, and just being here is awesome. I'm living at a house for the summer with a bunch of my friends and I'm having a great time.

Us: First time in Vegas I assume? You just turned 21 right?

Him: Yeah. This place is a trip.

Us: What were you up to before the World Series?

Him: Travelling around, playing different events. Basically having the time of my life. When I wasn't playing live events, I tried to play some of the major events online, and did pretty well. The last year or so has been absolutely amazing, from cash games to tournaments I've been doing pretty well.

Us: What was the coolest place you visited?

Him: Monte Carlo for sure, though I busted out of that tournament right away. A great time though. It's funny thinking that you are in Monte Carlo cause you are really good at playing online poker. In the end, it's just a game.

Us: How many events are you planning on playing?

Him: As many as I can. And as many cash games as I can. The plan is, if I bust out of a tournament, I'll head straight to the 25/50 No Limit cash games. If a friend is going deep, I'll probably just rail him and lend some support.

Us: Yeah, I saw you railing MrSmokey1. Another online player wins a big tournament. Why do you think that "online" players are dominantly so thoroughly recently?

Him: Many reasons. "Live" pros are pretty over-rated; they have that mystique, but they just aren't as good as people make them out to be. Most online players have seen hundreds of thousands of hands, and just about every situation possible. Most of the time, online players have a much better understanding of the mathematics of the game. And, online players tend to be more fearless and aggressive.

Us: All good points. I think you are dead-on when you say that "live" poker pros are over-rated.

Him: It's true. Much respect to them, but they just aren't as good as people make them out to be. I certainly don't feel intimidated sitting at a table with them.

Us: So I hear you just bought a house?

Him: Yeah. Well actually my second house. My first was just a rental property. I'm actually going to live in this one.

Us: What kind of a car you driving these days?

Him: BMW Z4 Roadster.

Us: Nice. Do you do any kind of investing at all? What kind of plans do you have for after poker?

Him: I like to spread my money around. I've invested in a few start-ups, I've put some money into mutual funds, and I now own two properties outright. I also keep a chunk of money in a bank account that I don't touch .. kind of a rainy day fund if I bust. Plus, even with my poker bankroll, I diversify by staking other players who I feel are EV+.

Us: So what kind of a poker bankroll do you have? You don't have to say obviously.. we will keep you anonymous.

Him: In terms of my liquid poker bankroll, higher than $500,000 and less than a million. I could bust my poker bankroll and still be fine. The key is to diversify. There are plenty of players who have their 100% net worth tied up in their poker bankrolls; that is nuts.

Us: What do you see yourself doing in ten years?

Him: I see myself as an Eli Elezra type; successful business owner who still has time to play on a nightly basis. That's the life that I want. I don't plan on playing behind a computer screen for the rest of my life.

Us: Thanks, and good luck in the rest of the WSOP.

Him: Thanks.