Life After Poker





December 2019
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I haven't done an interview for a while, but when it was announced Ultimate Poker was closing up in Nevada, I felt the need to give the story of my time at Ultimate Gaming.

Direct download: ultimate-gaming-vlog.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 5:31am EST

Life After Poker - Jason Strasser

Life After Poker is a series of conversational interviews with former poker pros. Many familar -- and less familiar -- poker pros have moved on to the business, academic, and other worlds and I want to talk about their stories.

This time out I chat with Jason Strasser, one of the original young no limit hold'em superstars that burst on the scene in the early 2000s. Jason was making big money playing high-stakes NLHE from his college dorm room at Duke, and traded that career in for a lengthy and successful career as a trader for Morgan Stanley. But playing with the house money wasn't enough for him, so he decided to start his own hedge fund. Jason joined me from his office in New York to talk about the time he spends on the 2+2 poker and investment forums, the fun of being in the financial markets, the pressures of managing the money of his friends and family, his attitudes towards poker today, what he misses about the poker lifestyle, and much more.

Jason's is a true success story of how a player goes from beating the big poker games to making real money beating "the Street".



Some highlights:

  • 11' Who exactly works for banks? How does one get a job in finance?
  • 17' Can you be “lazy” and successful in finance?
  • 26’ What played a more formative role in Jason getting tremendously good at poker and trading, was it the money, or the thrill of beating the game?
  • 33’ Jason talks about his mindset towards risk and how to perceive it.
  • 58’ Finance, ethics, and the contributions to society made by the capital markets.
  • 63’ What he really enjoyed when he played serious poker.
  • 71’ The one moment which could have changed the trajectory of Jason’s life.
Direct download: life-after-poker-jason-strasser.mp3
Category:poker -- posted at: 12:00pm EST

[Edit 3-Sept-14: Welcome 2+2 PokerCast listeners! If you got here through the PokerCast, you may want to check out notes at the bottom to save yourself some time.]

Life After Poker is a series of conversational interviews with former poker pros. Many familar -- and less familiar -- poker pros have moved on to the business, academic, and other worlds and I want to talk about their stories.

Matt Hawrilenko, known online as "Hoss_TBF", was one of the most successful high-limit mixed-game players of his era. He accumulated millions of dollars in cash game winnings, and won the 2009 6-max NL hold'em WSOP bracelet in 2009. Matt spent his summers living in the "Math of Poker House", discussing poker theory alongside fellow bracelet winners Bill Chen, Jerrod Ankenman, Gavin Griffin and Matt Grapenthein, and non-bracelet winners like the guy interviewing him for this episode.

These days, Matt is working on his Ph.D in Clinical Psychology. He lives with his wife Emily. I dropped by his home in Boston to talk with him about a wide array of topics ranging from clinical psychology, depression, how to optimize life decisions, performing self-assessments, and what Bill Chen thinks of him now as a poker player.



Note: The following (approximate) parts of the interview also played on the September 3, 2014 edition of the 2+2 PokerCast:

  • 8:03-14:55
  • 22:23-28:56
  • 37:28-1:10:30
Direct download: life-after-poker-matt-hawrilenko.mp3
Category:poker -- posted at: 9:56pm EST