Joey D from California proved that winning at poker takes more than just a lucky hand. Initially buying-in with accumulated Poker Points, he won the $35,000 Guaranteed DS twice in 10 days, claiming over $14,000 in profit. He shared his view on poker as well as tips and tricks for the game in an exclusive interview with Bovada.
What kind of strategy did you have throughout the poker tournament?
At the start of the tournament, my strategy was to play pretty solid until the antes kicked in. Then I wanted to start stealing some pots. When we got near the money, I became even more aggressive to build some chips and give myself a good chance of winning. Once we made the money, I tightened up again because all of the short stacks are now shoving light. You have to have a lot of different gears for tournament poker and know when to change them.
How did you get your seat in the tournament?
I had a lot of Poker Points left over and got into the first $35,000 with those. I bought in with my profit for the second one.
Who sits at the table in your dream poker room?
I always love a challenge when I play, so some of the best poker players in the world would be at my dream poker table, including Phil Ivey, Tom Dwan, Sam Trickett, Dan Colman and maybe one non-pro like my favorite athlete – Lebron James.
What was your best and worst moment throughout the tournament?
My worst moment in the tournament was definitely when I got down to three big blinds with 15 players left. For a second I thought it was over, but I told myself never give up and got lucky enough to run my stack back up. My best moment in the tournament would have to be going heads-up in both of them with about a three to one chip lead and being able to close them out.
What advice would you give to novice players for staying in the game?
I would say always try to improve your game and work hard. Every time you play you can learn something new and get better. Try not to be results oriented and think about the best play in the long run.
How did you get interested in playing poker?
I first became interested when I was 15, and my dad started playing online poker. I would occasionally watch him play. Eventually he started letting me play, and right away I had a passion for the game and couldn't get enough of it. I started off playing heads-up sit-and-go and started mixing in multi-table tournaments.
How would you describe yourself as a poker player?
I am determined and focused and always have fun while playing. I try not to think about the money involved and just make the best decision. I'm more of a heads-up sit-and-go specialist, but to get the big score you have to take your shots at tournaments.
What is your strategy for the final table?
My strategy for the final table was trying not to get involved in any big pots. I wanted to play small ball and keep as much luck out of it as I could. I tried to never be all in at the final table and risk a percentage of my stack in certain spots. I was lucky enough to win my coin flips and hit some hands at the right time.
What bad habits have you eliminated from your game over the years?
I’ve eliminated leaks from outside of the game, like bankroll management, tilting and letting poker affect your everyday life. I'm lucky that for some reason poker has never made me angry. I don't get upset over losing a lot of money or getting unlucky. I just always have fun when I play.
Do you have any superstitions that you believe help you with your game?
I'm not really superstitious. If anything, I’ll occasionally wear the same clothes for day two of a tournament. But maybe I just like those clothes.
What will you do with the money?
I’ll use the money to play more tournaments on Bovada and hopefully keep winning.