This is the transcript, chapter 4 of 6, for the PaceMakesTheRace Podcast: Interview With The Gambler, which originally published in 2012!
The Pro Gambler’s identity is restricted to us knowing his name is Jeff. This is really great information for today. We trust you will enjoy this series of transcript blogs!
- Getting to Know the Gambler.
- Handling Pressure.
- Cushion & Coaching.
- A Master-Mind Group.
- More About Coaching.
- Becoming a Winner.
Chapter 4: A Master-Mind Group
Jeff: I think you called it “Mastermind Group” and I think the people who get to that level, at least in the poker world, cant because it is such a small community at the very top.
I have had the chance, on a couple of occasions at tournaments I have played, where on dinner break I ended up sitting down at dinner with a couple of these very, top players in the world. Just eating dinner for an hour was incredible because a lot of it is natural.
Yeah people are going to say “How have you been, how is the family?” But then it is going to go back to whatever you are doing, and at these times it was the tournaments that were being played. Being able to sit in on that and a couple times hear them talking about their mindset and the way they are thinking about things. Having to have been in the right spot at the right time for “Hey come grab dinner with us!” is great.
Dave: Those kinds of groups are great, you get to hobnob with your peers. Right?
Jeff: Yeah and I am not even close to being a peer with these people.
You have the guys you see on the TV stuff at the very top. There are a lot of guys around the country who are just grinding it out, making a living, taking some shots at the tournaments; and that is the level I am sitting at. I would love to be up at that top level one day who would not? Who does not want to make more money?
Dave: But to be clear the level you are playing at is well above what most Americans earn in their day jobs, is it not?
Dave: Let us go back to the coaching. You have a coach that helps you with the technical side that we just discussed. You have this mastermind kind of alliance; and to paraphrase what you said you are still the young guy hanging out with the superstars when you get a chance?
Jeff: Yeah I am definitely not part of any Mastermind Group. I have met people and started to develop friendships which are invaluable. It has given me- I do not want to say limited access to that circle but I have had limited interactions within that circle which I think has been great.
The other thing is I have a coach for making the mental game, making the right decisions, not going off your “A Game”, knowing when you should be done for the day, knowing how to focus and concentrate when your luck goes the wrong way.
Dave: Can you tell us a little more about this mental coaching? That sounds like a self help guru or something. Is that what we are talking about here?
Jeff: Pretty much, just someone who spends his time, like a sports psychologist, who deals primarily with poker players.
Dave: That makes sense. You kind of alluded that the first kind, the technical side of the poker coach.. is $200-$600 an hour really what you pay or am I kind of crossing a boundary here?
Jeff: Yeah that is what it goes for the top coaches.
I know there are a lot of online coaching sites you can go to, obviously it is not personalized with the online. You can watch a video, learn from that and some of those are great. Some of them are not so great. There are probably individual coaches who charge less.
My attitude when it came time to find a coach is, if I wanted to be one of the top golfers in the world, if I had some skill at golf and I wanted to suddenly, somehow play on the PGA tour, I am not going to go down to my local golf course and get the pro there to be my coach.
Not that there is anything wrong that pro’s ability. He has not shown that ability or he has never brought someone to that elite level so I would not be accomplishing my goals by going to see him. I would want to seek out Hank Haney, is that the golf coach’s name? If I wanted to be able to play golf at an elite level I would go seek out a guy who has already shown the ability to coach people at an elite level.
Dave: Obviously coaches like that do not come cheap.
I will tell you a story, maybe our audience can connect with this. I used to get calls all the time from Anthony Robbins coaching department. Now, would I be interested in being coached by Anthony Robbins? You bet I would! But, I cannot afford $7000 for an hour long session or whatever it is he charges.
So instead he has this group of guys and they call you up and want to enroll you. I had a guy on the other end of the phone and I said, “Let me ask you a question. How much money did you make last year?” He said, “I do not see where that is relevant.” I say “I do. If I made more money than you did why would I want you coaching me on how to make money?”
On the other hand the idea that ‘them that can do, them that cannot teach’ if you look back historically to who was arguably the one of the greatest baseball hitters of the 1980s, George Bred, he was coached by Charlie Lowe who was accepted in baseball as one of the greatest hitting coaches in history. Yet he frankly was not a very good hitter.
Jeff: But he was a hitter at the major league level.
Dave: He was a player at the major league level but he was not a journey man. In other words he would never go into the hall of fame as a batter.
Jeff: No. But you know at the very top level there is such a narrow difference in talent.
You take the worst man on a major league baseball team and he is so much better than 99% of the world at hitting a baseball; and he cannot bat two hundred in the major leagues. But he is so much better than everyone else. It is just being able to be up at that level he has a ridiculous amount of talent.
The difference in talent between that guy and the consistent three hundred hitter is small. It is significant because of the results, but they are both so separated from everyone else and that guy probably understands the fundamentals of hitting a baseball so much better than, like I said, 99% of the people.
He is probably very capable of coaching how to hit because he can perform at that level even if he does not perform that well at that level.
Dave: Everything you say I totally resonate with.
There was a guy I used to know when I was coaching high school baseball. I came up to Reno and the second year I was here I was pitching coach on a high school baseball team. They had this hitting coach who had gone to the local college, the University of Nevada, Reno and he was a light hitting second baseman. The joke about having a hard time hitting his weight, and he is teaching hitters. It is like why would you want to take instruction from a guy like this?
In other words if a guy is above you on the evolutionary chain.. Like you were talking about going to the golf club, as a beginning golfer I could get lessons from him but once you are trying to get on the PGA tour you have to move up.
Keep checking back for Chapter 5…
Check back often. Did you know that the best stuff goes directly to our email community? Be the first to hear about special offers, new products, and new material. Sign Up Today.
Join the discussion in our private Talking Handicapping with Dave Schwartz Facebook Group.