Nate and I are grateful to those of you who have listened to The Thinking Poker Podcast this year, whether you’re a regular follower, a sporadic listener, or just now discovering the show. I’ve compiled a list of some of my favorite episodes of the year, in case you missed any (several of these are from our time on the PokerNews feed) or are a newcomer selectively catching up on past episodes. For recommendations about older episodes, I made a similar list last year.
Nate and I talk strategy on just about every episode, but of course the show is at its very best strategy-wise when the game’s top players share their wisdom.
Ben Sulsky – It was a great privilege to talk about game theory (and philosophy) with a player who is blazing new frontiers in poker strategy.
Mike McDonald – Our conversation with Mike was great in a lot of ways, but among other things he was generous enough to share some deep thoughts on tournament strategy, including the underappreciated “hero check”.
My favorite guests are not only great players (sometimes they aren’t players at all) but also fascinating people who open up about their struggles, their successes, and unique poker careers.
John the Lawyer – A long career in big live games, including a lot of private games, is bound to produce some great stories, and John tells them well. If you overlooked this episode because you didn’t recognize the name, go back and listen. There’s some solid strategy discussion in here as well.
Dara O’Kearney – Going pro later in life gave Dara a unique perspective on the poker world, and his Irish blood gives him the ability to share his thoughts with both humor and deep insight into many facets of the game, including staking.
Terrence Chan – Terrence not only shares stories from his poker and mixed martial arts careers but also gives some insight into the state of regulated online poker in Nevada. This interview is particularly interesting in light of what happened with Ultimate Poker just a few months later.
Ari Engel – Ari reveals that the life of the circuit grinder isn’t always a glamorous one. Even one of the most successful player on the WSOP circuit has to live a nitcast-approved lifestyle to keep his dream alive.
Alex Fitzgerald – Alex is brutally honest about the highs and lows of his career, including his struggle with drugs and his new life in Costa Rica.
Just Plain Fun
Nate and I rarely have as much fun as when we get to catch up with some of the great friends we’ve made through the podcast, and when we’re having the most fun, that’s usually when the show is the most fun to listen to.
Live From Las Vegas featuring Carlos Welch – One of the perks of our relationship with PokerNews was the opportunity to record together in person (a rare treat in itself) from the halls of the World Series of Poker. Carlos Welch joins us for this entertaining episode that includes a lot of strategy discussion from non-hold ’em games.
Episode 100 – This is one for the fans. In this double-length episode, two of our most popular guests, Carlos Welch and Gareth Chantler, turn the tables and interview Nate and me about our lives and poker careers.