Phil Galfond does a Reddit AMA

Phil Galfond. Photo: PokerNews

Phil "OMGClayAiken" Galfond stopped by Reddit for an "Ask Me Anything" social interview yesterday.

Before the interview Galfond described himself mostly as a online cash game player, even though he has $1.8m in live tournament winnings.

"I spend my time and energy on my specialty: online cash games, where I have over $10m in net profit to date, mostly in NLHE and PLO. Just under one year ago, I launched, and it has since grown into the most respected poker training community online. I am both the company's owner and lead instructor.", Galfond writes.

As you can imagine, Galfond received a lot of questions and here are just a few interesting ones that he decided to answer:


Best live cash game players? How much money are the western guys winning in Macau?


Tough question to answer. The obvious one is Phil Ivey... Then it depends what games you're talking about. Most of the successful live players specialize in mixed games rather than NL and PLO.

Off the top of my head: Patrik Antonius, David Oppenheim, John Hennigan, Nick Schulman, Huck Seed... to be completely honest though, I'm not a specialist in mixed games, so I'm not very confident in my list. I'm sure I forgot some too, but I'm trying to speed through here.

As far as I know, the stakes over there (in Macau) are equivalent to $2,000/$4,000 sometimes, so it'd be pretty easy to win or lose $5 million. I'd expect that there are a handful of $10m+ winners from those games.


Hey Phil,

I have three questions,

1) How seriously did Black Friday affect you? I know you sold your apartment with the slide, which even hits me right in the feels.

2) I have heard you and Tom Dwan are pretty good friends. Just interested to know how that relationship started seeing as your job is to take each other's money.

3) Have you been to Macau to take advantage of the supposedly incredible action going on over there?


1) As you said, I had to sell my apartment (and slide) and move out of the country. It was very hard because I left behind many of my closest friends, and I have lived a nomadic life every since (I can't stay in Canada full time as a US citizen, and I go back to see friends, family, etc).

Don't feel bad for me. I was one of the lucky ones. Many players had significant chunks of their net worth stuck (still stuck) on Full Tilt. Even worse, many players had wives and kids and couldn't uproot the entire family and leave the country. Those are the people I feel worst for, not only because they have to either quit poker, find a way to play live, or leave their family a couple weeks every month to go play... but because on top of all that, they took a significant and completely unexpected income hit while trying to support their family.

2) Tom and I actually became friends before we'd played much together. We met through our mutual friend, Dave Benefield, around 7-8 years ago. Tom was playing 50/100nl already, and I was just a lowly 5/10 player :)

He was extremely generous, letting me watch him play NL (and later PLO) even after not knowing me very long. To say Tom had an impact on my early growth as a player would be an understatement.

3) I haven't been. I've considered it from time to time, but it's a pretty serious hassle... not only flying that far and staying there, but even just getting into games. It's not like Vegas where you just pop in and grab a seat (though Vegas isn't exactly like this either sometimes).

I also would need to sell action or get a full or partial stake. I'm not going to risk the money I'd need to play 2k/4k... I just simply can't afford it.

I'm not into networking... Convincing people to invest in me or making friends with people who can help me get into games. I'll never pretend that I'm not a pro or even that I'm not a good player. Because of that, I don't get myself into some profitable games/situations that other players do, but that's my choice.

I'm not saying that anything is wrong with that... it's just business... but it's not for me.

You can read the full thread and all the questions that Galfond answered from here.



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