Chasing Poker Greatness

By Brad Wilson

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If you want to improve your poker game and study habits ...

If you dream about having a successful career as a poker player …

Then "Chasing Poker Greatness" is your golden ticket!

15 year cash game pro and poker training website founder Brad Wilson interviews poker's elite, up-and-coming stars, and tireless ambassadors of the game in order to learn about their amazing journey, share their daily processes/tactics for regularly improving their poker game, and invaluable wisdom they have gained through a life on the felt.

Guests include: Dan "Jungleman" Cates, Matt Berkey, Jeff Gross, Jonathan Little, Matt Staples, and many, many more!

The first five episodes premier on Friday October, 18th ... be sure to subscribe and let my amazing guests guide you on your path to reach poker greatness!

Episode Date
#49 Scott Seiver: The One and Only
Scott Seiver is a man infused with so much greatness that he needs no introduction.
Apr 01, 2020
#48 David Lappin: $4.5 Million MTT Winnings, Unibet Ambassador, Award Winning Podcaster
Welcome, welcome, welcome my friend to the Chasing Poker Greatness podcast! As always, this is your host the founder of Brad Wilson.

Today’s very special guest is online and live tournament crusher David Lappin.

In David’s 13 year career he has racked up over almost $4.5 million in online and live MTT cashes with, more importantly, over a million dollars in profit.

He’s also the co-creator of the GPI award winning podcast “The Chip Race” with previous CPG guest Dara O’ Kearney.

Currently David is hard at work helping pub games and home games stay together in the current pandemic crisis by moving online and organising them through private password protected games on Unibet.

Outside of poker, David’s background is arguably even more impressive than his poker resume.

He has degrees in History and Art History. Masters in Philosophy and another in screenwriting. MLitt (it’s similar but not quite a phD) in philosophy.

In our conversation today, you’re going to learn:

- What all pros should prioritize above all else when it comes to being affiliated with an online poker platform.
- How successful poker stables ought to operate.
- The number one thing David believes can close the gap between recreational players and pros in MTT’s.
- And MUCH more!

So, without any further ado, it is my absolute pleasure to bring to you the one and only David Lappin.
Mar 31, 2020
#47 Ari Engel: $7 Million Live Earnings, 2006 Online POY, and 37th Ranked MTT Player in the World
Yoo what is happening my friend? Welcome to the Chasing Poker Greatness podcast, as always this is your host the founder of Enhance Your Edge Brad Wilson.

Today’s guest is one of the all-time beasts in both the online and live poker realm Ari Engel. Ari has over 7 million dollars in live tournament winnings, was the number 1 ranked online player for tournaments in 2006, and is currently the 35th ranked tournament player in the world according to the global poker index.

Coming off of a scorching hot LAPC with 2 wins and 2 runner-ups, Ari is showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon.

In our conversation we’re going to cover a TON of ground including Ari’s experiences with backers, unexpected acts of kindness in the poker world, and stepping out of your comfort zone when you see your fellow human beings being mistreated.

You’ll also learn:

- How Ari used online trolls to improve his game.
- What Ari believes is an ELITE return on investment for every tournament you enter (Hint, it was much different than what I had previously believed.
- How Ari’s opinion on “playing for the win” has changed over the years.
- And much, much more.

So, without any further ado, I bring to you the perpetually great Ari Engel.
Mar 24, 2020
#46 Sean Snyder: The High Stakes Mixed Games Misfit
Yoo what is happening my friend? Welcome to the Chasing Poker Greatness podcast, as always this is your host the founder of Enhance Your Edge Brad Wilson.

Today’s guest is high stakes cash game LEGEND and BEAST Sean Snyder.

Sean is, in his own words, one of the “poker misfits” who regularly plays the biggest mixed games stakes spread in his home city of San Diego.

Sean was suggested to me by one of my favorite humans in the poker world, DGAF, and you’re going to see straight away that birds of a feather flock together.

Sean is brutally honest and forthcoming about his journey playing cards that will, of course, lead us down the path of drunken DGAF stories, the time Sean went broke after spending many years playing $400-$800 mixed games and had to start over playing the $50 NL games on Ignition, and then his eventual resurgence to the high stakes games he was born to play in.

In this episode you’ll learn:

- Why tournament results can be extremely misleading.
- Sean’s #1 advice for having a sustainable poker career (Besides the standard DGAF line of … don’t).
- How Sean has built up multiple 6 figure bankrolls.
- The benefits of learning the mixed games.
- And much, much more.

So, without any further ado, I bring to you my conversation with the one-of-a-kind Sean Snyder.
Mar 20, 2020
#45 Katie Stone: Finding Your Tribe, Final Table Breakdown, & Trusting Your Gut
Yoo what is happening my friend? Welcome to the Chasing Poker Greatness podcast, as always this is your host the founder of Enhance Your Edge Brad Wilson.

Today’s very special guest is PartyPoker US and Borgata sponsored poker pro Katie Stone.

Katie has been a mainstay battling in the poker tournament world for over a decade from Texas, to her home turf the shores of New Jersey, to the fabled online haven of Rosarita, Mexico.

In our conversation today we’re going to dive into Katie’s journey from growing up immersed in competition (whether it be chess or any and all kinds of sports) to becoming a successful entrepreneur in her early 20’s to eventually finding poker when (surprise, surprise) she didn’t exactly love the thought of working for someone else.

In our conversation, you’re going to learn:

- Why I think you should always trust your “gut” at the poker table.
- How horrible of a human being that I am for making Katie re-live a very painful final table hand she was recently involved in.
- Katie’s wisdom on how-to genuinely find your poker tribe if you are obsessed with Chasing Poker Greatness.
- And much, much more!

So, without any further ado, I bring to you the amazing and brilliant Katie Stone.
Mar 17, 2020
#44 Norman Chad: The Voice of Poker's Most Memorable Moments
Aloha and hello my friend and welcome to the Chasing Poker Greatness podcast. As always, this is your host the founder of Brad Wilson and today’s guest is a LEGEND in the poker media arena Norman Chad.

Before we jump into the conversation, I want you to take a second to imagine a time when NO poker was on television and it wasn’t even a given that the WSOP would continue on a year-to-year basis.

It was in this environment that Norman was asked to be a commentator for a thing that he or almost anybody else on the planet even knew needed commenting on. Luckily for the poker world, Norman decided to move forward with the gig after being on the fence and the rest, as they say, is history.

Along with being one half of the OG poker commentary team on ESPN with Lon McEachern, Norman is a sportswriter and syndicated columnist who has also written episodes for TV shows Arliss and Coach.

In our wide-ranging conversation we’re going to travel through Norman’s career in journalism, poker, his future projects, and the state of social media.

You’ll also learn:

- How Norman got the WSOP commentary gig in the first place despite knowing BUPKIS about poker strategy.
- What being at the WSOP felt like before it became the spectacle that it is today.
- Why Norman feels the poker community needs to lighten up over relatively minor issues.
- Why betting sports is a sure-fire way to torch your money over the long-term.
- And much, much more!

So, without any further ado, I bring to you my conversation with the one and only WHAMBOOZLER supreme, Norman Chad.
Mar 13, 2020
#43 K.L. Cleeton: How-To Effectively and Efficiently Learn Your MTT Ranges
Welcome my friend to the Chasing Poker Greatness podcast! As always this is your host Brad Wilson, the founder of, and today’s special guest is K.L. Cleeton.

Born with Spinal Muscular Atrophy Type 1, K.L. Cleeton of Southern Illinois, has played poker at some level for the last 10 years and has considered himself a professional for the last 2 1/2.

In 2017, he won a contest from Daniel Negreanu and lived his dream of playing in the WSOP Main Event, ultimately cashing for $16,000.

For the last year he has been coached by one of the best in the industry, former Chasing Poker Greatness guest Ryan LaPlante, and is a gladiator for one of the most prestigious backing groups in the world, Team651.

In addition to playing, K.L. has been heavily involved in the launch and continued development of Ryan LaPlante's new tournament poker training site LearnProPoker.

Never one to rest on his laurels, after being frustrated that there weren’t any resources designed specifically to help players learn and memorize ranges efficiently K.L., along with Matt McElligott, created and launched the app RangeTrainer Pro.

Officially launched in early December, 2019 RangeTrainerPro has high hopes of becoming the go to tool for poker players of all levels to improve and stay sharp so they are always playing their A-game.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

- The mindset that will prevent you from ever achieving poker greatness.
- Why deviating from your strategy without a solid foundation is a recipe for disaster.
- Why K.L. believes “Range Trainer Pro” is the BEST tournament poker training software on the market for learning and memorizing ranges.
- And much, much more.

So, without any further ado, I bring to you the inspirational K.L. Cleeton.
Mar 10, 2020
#42 James Romero: $4.7 Million in Tourney Winnings, WPT 5 Diamonds Champ, High Roller Crusher
I’m your host, the founder of Brad Wilson and today’s guest is currently the 26th ranked player in the world (According to the Global Poker Index) James Romero.

If James isn’t a familiar name to you yet, it’s only a matter of time.

Over the last 4 years battling in the live poker arena, James has racked up a ridiculous $4.7 million in winnings including a $1.9 million score at the WPT 5 Diamond Classic in 2016.

In our conversation today, James and I will cover his poker journey from living in Mexico battling in the online arena to becoming one of the most feared competitors at any table he sits at.

You’re going to hear about the expectations that come with winning one of the most prestigious events of the year straight out of the gate, how James maintained his energy levels and focus heading into a tournament with life-chasing ramifications, and what his future holds in the poker world (To foreshadow a little on this, he also took down a $25k high roller a few short weeks after we had recorded our interview).

You’ll also learn:

- Jame’s thoughts on bankroll considerations for folks that consistently play $5k and $10k events.
- The thing you ABSOLUTELY must have to ensure you don’t get eaten live when you’re at the top of the cash game/tournament world.
- How James studies and improves his game in a live setting.
- And much, much more.

So, without any further ado, I bring to you my conversation with one of the elite players in the world James Romero.
Mar 06, 2020
#41 Jeff Madsen: $5.6 Million in Tourney Winnings and 4x WSOP Gold Bracelet Winner
Today’s guest is a 4 time WSOP gold bracelet winner with more than $5.6 million in live tournament winnings Jeff Madsen.

Jeff has been a known entity in the poker world for what seems like forever, beginning with his scorching hot start on poker’s biggest stage as the 2006 WSOP player of the year.

In 2006 Jeff won more than $1.4 million, 2 WSOP bracelets, while also becoming the youngest person to EVER win a bracelet at the ripe old age of 21 years and 5 weeks (A record that was later shattered by a then 18 year old Annette Obrestad at the WSOP Europe).

Jeff is a human being who simply loves battling in the poker arena and has no plans of ever calling it quits.

In our conversation today we’re going to get into that fateful 2006 which, shockingly, saw his bankroll go from the high 4 figures to 7 figures in less than a month and how that affected his life in not all positive ways, the shocking impact of Black Friday as a red Full Tilt pro, the consequences of achieving so much success at a young age and much, much more.

You’ll also learn about:

- Physical tells and reading energy in the live poker arena.
- Why Jeff believes he had so much success right off the bat.
- Why money management is like Ron Burgundy, kind of a big deal.
- And much, much more.

So, without any further ado, I bring to you my conversation with the one and only Jeff Madsen.
Mar 03, 2020
#40 Dara O'Kearney: $4.1 Million in Tourney Winnings, Author, and Award Winning Podcast Host
Well hello there and thank you so much for listening to the Chasing Poker Greatness podcast.

As always, this is your host Brad Wilson the founder of and today’s special guest is the inimitable Dara O’ Kearney.

Dara got into poker at a later age than pretty much anybody else I know.

As a matter of fact at the age he was getting into poker (40) I will have been in the game for 20 years .. which is, quite frankly, shocking to me … where does the time go?

But poker is a game that can seduce folks at all ages, from all walks of life, and across all borders and languages around the world.

To say Dara has thrived would not do his success justice.

He has $4.1 million in winnings in live and online tournaments, hosts an award winning podcast “The Chip Race, has written 2 books (“Poker Satellite Strategy” and the upcoming “PKO Poker Strategy” with another Chasing Poker Greatness guest Barry Carter), and is an ambassador for one of the largest poker platforms in Europe, UnitBet poker.

He’s a man after my own heart who genuinely cares about guiding and helping folks along in their poker journey.

If our conversation, you’re about to learn:

- How to avoid getting scammed in the poker world.
- How Dara maintains his energy through the long, grueling days of live tournament poker.
- Why poker sites ought to be embracing the folks who aspire to be pros rather than trying to turn poker into bingo.
- And MUCH more!

So, without any further ado, I bring to you my conversation with the great Dara O’ Kearney.
Feb 28, 2020
#39 Steve Fredlund: Why Poker is NOT a Solo Sport
What is HAPPENING my friend and welcome to the Chasing Poker Greatness podcast. This is your host Brad Wilson, the founder of, and today’s guest is the host of the recpoker podcast Steve Fredlund.

More than anything wants to help people live their most fulfilling lives. For him, this has meant leaving the corporate world after 25 years to pursue speaking, coaching, and consulting while allowing time to play poker and further develop the RecPoker podcast.

The RecPoker podcast has nearly 170 episodes and gained acclaim from many guests, media outlets and listeners. The focus is on strategy for the recreational player, but wrapped in the comfortable blanket of authentic community.

Many people have become diehard listeners because they have longed to be part of an encouraging poker learning community, which is what RecPoker offers through the podcast, Discord channel, monthly free home games on PokerStars, social media conversations, and membership opportunities. Good people learning poker and enjoying relationships.

You’ll learn:

- How Steve simplifies complex poker ideas so that newcomers to the game can better understand poker strategy.
- Why being surrounded by a great community can skyrocket your game and your life.
- Why Steve believes principles will take you much farther rote memorization.
- And much, much more!

So, without any further ado, this is Steve Fredlund on Chasing Poker Greatness.
Feb 25, 2020
#38 Alex "Assassinato" Fitzgerald: $3.7 Million Tournament Winnings, Author, and Legendary Poker Coach
My guest is Alexander “Assassinato” Fitzergald who has cashed for over $4 million in online and live tournaments, is the author of 2 poker books (Exploitative Play in Live Poker and The Myth of Poker Talent), and has almost certainly done more private coaching lessons than anyone else on the planet.

Alex has accomplished all of this despite a self-professed “Lack of natural poker talent”.

How is that something you can overcome, you might ask? Grit, hard work, finding your tribe, and always, always, always understanding the “why” behind the plays you’re making at the tables.

It’s safe to say there are greatness bombs aplenty in this episode from why it’s actually a GOOD THING that you get berated at the tables when playing smaller stakes, how coaching whether you’re currently winning or losing can help you ascend and reach your poker goals faster than you think is possible, and why we should all regularly pick up new hobbies to learn so that we can get comfortable knowing we don’t know everything about everything.

You’re also going to learn:

- How a life disruption motivated Alex to become the best version of himself.
- Why live poker doesn’t evolve and change as quickly as online poker.
- Alex’s favorite memory traveling and playing cards (Which almost feels like a scene straight out of a movie).
- Why just playing cards, win or lose, makes Alex feel alive.
- And MUCH more!

So, without any further ado, here’s my conversation with one of the best and brightest poker minds in the world Alexander “Assassinato” Fitzgerald.
Feb 21, 2020
#37: Mindset and "The Galfond Challenge" with Nick Howard
I am joined with Nick Howard to discuss as of 2/18/20 the current results of the "Galfond Challenge" (-$900k).

We discuss all things Galfond Challenge with our main focus being on mindset.

What will Phil do moving forward?

Are the early results of the Galfond challenge more likely variance or a giant miscalculation?

Taking out all other considerations, what do we think Phil's next move should be in a vacuum?

Feb 19, 2020
#36 The Poker Guys: Professional Poker Players, Authors, And Prolific Creators
Six years ago professional poker players Grant Denison and Jonathan Levy uploaded their first videos onto YouTube as the “Hand of the Week” guys.

Little did they know “Hand of the Week” had been trademarked by a former “Chasing Poker Greatness” legend of poker who wasn’t exactly a big fan of their brutally honest, pull-no-punches analysis.

They quickly decided to change the name of their show and “The Poker Guys” was born shortly thereafter.

In the following conversation we’re going to go through their journey from professional poker players to prolific content creators who have amassed almost 30k YouTube subscribers as well as a consistently top ranked poker podcast.

You’re going to learn:

- Why verbal and physical tells are EXTREMELY difficult for amateur poker players to fake.
- Why “The Poker Guys” initially heeded the siren song to transition from players to teachers.
- Their process for content creation (Which I am very envious of).

So if you love laughing like maniacs and hearing amazing behind-the-scenes stories from a couple of poker’s best storytellers strap in and get ready to enjoy my conversation with Grant Denison and Jonathan Levy.
Feb 18, 2020
#35 Darren Elias: The ONLY 4-Time WPT Champ, $11.3 Million Online & Live Tourney Winnings, and Poker End Boss
Yoooo, welcome my friend to another episode of the “Chasing Poker Greatness” podcast!

I’m your host, founder of Brad Wilson and today’s guest is the only 4-time WPT champion on the planet, the one and only Darren Elias.

Darren has over $7.5 million in career live cashes to go along with a pretty, pretty, pretty good $3.8 million in lifetime online career winnings … all despite being a low-volume player.

His career highlights include:

- The aforementioned FOUR WPT titles, including: the WPT Bobby Baldwin Classic, 2017 WPT Fallsview, season 16 WPT Tournament of Champions, and (Darren’s personal favorite win) the 2014 WPT Borgata Open.
- Winning the 2012 World Championship of Online Poker high roller event for a cool $574k.
- And a 2009 FTOPs gold medal for $126k.

Our conversation covers a ton of ground from how Darren got his start playing cards in a way that’s very near and dear to my own heart … playing Yahoo! Hearts, to his first tournament bink and subsequent bankroll explosion to over $500k.

There are too many greatness bombs to count headed your way, including:

- How human beings are driven by personal interests and incentives that skew their opinions.
- Darren’s thoughts on the re-entry vs. freezeout debate.
- Why AI is an existential, imminent threat to the present and future of online poker.
- Why Darren spends most of his time studying human behavior and analyzing patterns to improve his poker game.
- And much, much more!

So, without any further ado, I bring to you the great Darren Elias.
Feb 14, 2020
#34 Jon "Apestyles" Van Fleet: $15.8 Million in Tournament Winnings and Online Poker Legend
I’m your host the founder of Brad Wilson and today’s guest is an absolute legend of the online game, Jon “apestyles” Van Fleet.

Jon is currently #4 in lifetime online poker MTT tournament winnings with a cool $15.8 million … with a $5 million+ of that coming from a ridiculous 2 month venture playing $25k MTT’s on GGPoker last November and December (Which you are moments away from hearing all about).

And not only has Jon been crushing tournaments for almost 2 decades, he is also as generous as they come when it comes to helping other folks out and sharing valuable information that probably isn’t in his best interest.

When it comes to MTT poker coaches, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better dude to help you ascend through the poker ranking than Jon.

In our conversation, you’ll also learn:

- Why structure is paramount to Apestyles success in life.
- Why the game of poker is an amazing example of a meritocracy that is more pure than almost any other life pursuit.
- How he uses PIO to generate heuristics and find patterns he can actually execute at the tables.
- And so much more!

So buckle up, strap in, and get ready for a plethora of GREATNESS BOMBS from world-class tournament CRUSHER Jon "Apestyles" Van Fleet.
Feb 11, 2020
#33 Kristy Arnett: Creating Your Vision, Taking Risks, and Living a Better Life
I’m your host, founder of Brad Wilson and my guest today is the always incredible Kristy Arnett.

Kristy has been in the poker industry for the past 15 years, starting off working as a reporter for Card Player magazine and then PokerNews. Then, in 2014, she decided to take the leap and began to play cards professionally.

For a lot of folks, this could have ended in absolute disaster … but Kristy is not a human being you want to bet against.

She has the unique combination of other-worldly grittiness, humility, and confidence that pretty much guarantees success in whatever venture she chooses to take on.

She has not only survived but has THRIVED on the green felt, battling primarily in the live cash game arenas in sunny California.

Kristy sums up her aspirations in life through a T.S. Elliot quote, “Only those who risk going too far, can possibly know how far one can go.”

But you can’t have a journey without a plan, a vision for what it will take to reach your destination and if you are lacking a vision, Kristy is about to walk you through that process.

In our conversation, you’ll also learn:

- Why Kristy decided to leave poker media and go pro.
- How poker can be used as a tool to pursue what you love.
- Kristy’s amazing wisdom if you want to become a professional poker player.
- How you can use poker to become a better human being.
- And so, so MUCH more!

So without any further ado, I bring to you my conversation with future NYT bestselling author, Kristy Arnett.
Feb 07, 2020
#32 Ryan Schoonbaert: Specialization is For Insects (How you're likely missing out on an MTT gravy train)
Ryan has been a POKER BATTLER since he was a mere 18 year old in his hometown of Calgary, Alberta Canada.

Always willing to mix it up, Ryan is the rare breed of poker player who is willing to sit down and play any variation of poker under the sun. For the first handful of years in his poker career, Ryan was a full-time live pro who never really caught the online bug.

That all changed practically overnight when Ryan decided to jump head first into the Twitch streets because of a challenge from one of his good friends, Kevin Martin … which he’ll tell you all about in just a few minutes.

The poker world should be very, very grateful for that challenge as Ryan brings a uniqueness to the poker world that, in my opinion, is invaluable for both rookes and veterans in the cardplayer game.

In our conversation, you’ll also learn:

Why game specialization isn’t always the most profitable or gratifying route you can take as a poker player.
Why Ryan transitioned to solely battling on the PLO streets on his Twitch stream.
How playing the carnival games for “fun” even a little bit in your downtime can have a dramatic negative impact on your poker career.
And much more.

So strap in tight and get ready to feel the burning desire to diversify your game selection, increase your edge, and insulate yourself in an ever-chasing poker environment.

Without any further ado, I am super pumped to bring to you my conversation with Ryan Schoonbaert.
Feb 04, 2020
#31 Phil Hellmuth: 15 Gold Bracelets, $23 Million in Cashes, & Poker Hall of Famer
Welcome back for another episode of Chasing Poker Greatness. I am your host, Brad Wilson, and today I am going to be speaking with one of poker’s superstars. Anyone with even a passing interest in poker during the last 20 years will certainly know who he is. My guest today is the one and only “poker brat” himself, Mr Phil Helmuth.

Phil’s list of accomplishments and accolades in Poker is so long that it’s difficult to put it all together without missing something. To name just some of the things that have made him one of the best poker players to ever take a seat at the table:

- He is a member of the WSOP Poker Hall of Fame
- In 1989 he became the youngest player to win the WSOP main event. A record that stood until 2008 when Peter Eastgate won the event.
- He holds the record for most WSOP cashes - 108
- He holds the record for most WSOP final tables - 52
- He has won more than $14 million in WSOP cashes alone
- He ranks 5th on the WSOP all-time money list
- He holds 15 championship bracelets, 13 of them for Hold’em
- In 1993 he became only the second player in history to win 3 bracelets at one WSOP
14 cashes and 5 final tables in the WPT

Aside from appearing on TV during broadcasts of some of the tournaments he’s played in, he’s also appeared in many other televised games such as Poker After Dark, Hight Stakes Poker, and Late Night Poker.

Just slightly outside of poker, Phil has also written several books including his autobiography, “Poker Brat”, several poker strategy books, and “Positivity: 8 Tips For Success”.

During my conversation with Phil , you’ll hear some of his best stories about a life playing poker and the places the game has taken him. He talks about the days when the only people who knew who professional poker players were were other professional poker players. He talks about what it was like to go from obscurity to a poker celebrity recognized all over the world, and, of course, what it’s like to carry the reputation of being “the poker brat”.

There are very few players that have played as long as Phil Helmuth has and remain active and successful in the game. ...And he shows no signs of stopping anytime soon.

This episode was originally aired live on YouTube. If you didn’t catch the live broadcast, you’ll be glad you didn’t miss this chance to get a candid peek inside the world of one of poker’s living legends.

I thank you again for listening...And now...This Phil Helmuth on Chasing Poker Greatness.
Jan 31, 2020
#30 Aleeyah Jadavji: WSOP Writer, Live Reporter, Poker Player, and All-Around Badass
I’m your host Brad Wilson, the founder of, and today my guest is the one and only Aleeyah Jadavji.

Aleeyah is a WSOP writer, live reporter, poker player, winner of the PokerStars $30k Platinum Pass, and all-around badass.

Before we hop into Aleeyah and I’s conversation, I want to be upfront in that this was the most nervous I have ever been before any interview I have ever done.

In these CPG intros I talk a lot about career winnings in the millions of dollars, awards won, and going to war playing massive stakes, but all of that pales in comparison to the battle Aleeyah is fighting.

A couple of years ago, after losing 100 lbs and feeling the best she’s ever felt, Aleeyah was dealing with some intense pain and went to the Dr. where she found out she had a 10 lb cancerous tumor in her stomach.

Fortunately the tumor had not spread (Most likely for reasons we discuss in our conversation) and was successfully removed.

Unfortunately the cancer did return and, like the true warrior she is, Aleeyah’s battle continues as of the release of this episode.

The vulnerability Aleeyah expressed in our conversation is of course incredibly inspiring, I am humbled to say that I now consider her a dear friend, and I can say with 100% confidence that this is my favorite podcast conversation of all-time.

So, without any further ado, I bring to you Aleeyah Jadavji on Chasing Poker Greatness.
Jan 28, 2020
#29 Travis Darroch: Team PartyPoker Online, Twitch Partner, DramaticDegen
I’m your host, the founder of Brad Wilson, and today I’m going to be speaking with Team PartyPoker online Pro and MTT specialist the DramaticDegen himself, Travis Darroch.

Travis is yet another shining example of “making it” in the modern poker world through hard work and a genuine love for the game.

He grew up with a love for film and aspirations of making it in the entertainment business but, ultimately, that ended up not working out.

The entertainment industry’s loss was poker’s gain when Travis learned about a little niche called “streaming” where he could marry two of his loves at the same time … performance and playing cards.

In Travis’s relatively short poker career, he has already had one 6 figure score with plenty more on the way.

In our conversation you’re going to hear about the misery Travis went through working at Enterprise Rent-a-Car just a few short years back, how his family feels about him being a professional poker player (Shocker of the year here, not everyone is ultra supportive of a career playing cards), and how, despite initial hardships and struggles, Travis has risen up with an amazing following and some massive tournament scores.

So, without any further ado, I bring to you my conversation with the DramaticDegen himself, Travis Darroch.
Jan 24, 2020
#28: Nick Howard: Founder/CEO Poker Detox, Elite Coaching & Staking
Yoooooo what is happening my fine-feathered friend and welcome back for another episode of Chasing Poker Greatness. I’m your host, the founder of Brad Wilson, and today I’m going to be speaking with renowned high-stakes online cash game crusher and coach, Nick Howard.

Nick has been one of the prominent coaches in the poker world for going on 10 years now.

He was once one of the most sought after coaches at Run It Once and has since moved on to form his own private coaching and staking company, Poker Detox.

After experiencing extreme suffering and considering giving up the game forever, Nick surrendered to a larger purpose and made it his life’s mission to develop more simplified strategies than the GTO based ones so that other folks wouldn’t have to go through what he did.

In order to put his money where his mouth was, Mission #1 was to take a small group of losing players and turn them into winners within a year … not an adventure for the faint of heart.

They were successful, to say the least, and have since become the core of Poker Detox.

Nick speaks with conviction as he shares his journey through inner turmoil, how he used that pain to drive him forward and create something new, and why he feels that it is absolutely essential that he shares what he knows and what he’s doing with those who want to learn from him.

If you feel like you’ve been struggling, or that you’ve hit a wall you just can’t seem to get past, Nick’s words could be the catalyst that sets you on a new and easier path to poker greatness.

Thanks again for joining me. And now...Nick Howard on Chasing Poker Greatness.
Jan 21, 2020
#27 Lee Jones: Author and Former PokerStars Cardroom Manager
Today I have the opportunity to speak with a true poker pioneer and insider.

Having worked for about 15 years within the top levels of one of the largest poker sites in the world, you are about to enjoy a bounty of amazing stories about the good ole days of PokerStars.

My guest today is author, professional cardplayer, and former PokerStars cardroom manager and head of communications, Lee Jones.

Lee’s initial involvement in the industry started with a very young PokerStars in 2003 when he was asked to serve as their cardroom manager. Under this position, Lee was responsible for coordinating tournaments, making decisions on the games that would be offered, and more.

Over the years he also worked as the executive host of the European Poker Tour, COO of, and cardroom manager at Cake Poker.

He’s written — and continues to write — articles for such well-known poker publications as and Bluff magazine.

He is also known as the author of the book “Winning at Low-Limit Hold’em” and one half of the two-man team that developed the Sit And Go End Game system for heads-up tournament play.

Currently, you’ll find him on YouTube, where he and previous Chasing Poker Greatness podcast guest Tommy Angelo have begun working together to create videos designed to simplify the game of poker so that they are more accessible and enjoyable for live cash game players.

During my conversation with Lee, he’ll let you in on how he got started with poker, what brought him to work at PokerStars, and even a bit of what things looked like from inside the world’s largest poker site when Black Friday hit the US and the online poker landscape changed forever.

It’s rare that one gets to hear from someone who was there almost from the beginning and watched as online poker grew from sites that could barely attract a few hundred players into monster empires with hundreds of thousands of players from all over the world competing at the same time.

So strap in and get ready to enjoy Lee’s greatness bombs and take a trip down memory lane.

Once again, I thank you for joining me and, without any further ado, this is Chasing Poker Greatness with Mr Lee Jones…
Jan 17, 2020
#26 Fedor Holz: #1 Poker Player 2016, $32 Million in Live Tourney Winnings, & 2x Online MTT POY
My guest today is, indisputably, one of the greatest players to ever sit down at a poker table. He came onto the scene like a hurricane and swept away anyone and everyone in his path to being the number one ranked poker player in the world

And then, equally as abruptly, decided to call it a day and retire.

All before the age of 26.

Today I am joined by Fedor Holz.

Fedor, originally from Germany, has absolutely dominated both live and online poker tournaments during his career. He’s earned more than $40 million, taking down several multi-million dollar cashes along the way.

He has a WSOP bracelet and his WSOP circuit results as listed on show him with 12 cashes totalling just over $11.9 million. Among those are:

A 1st place finish in the High-Roller for One Drop, $111,111 buy-in, for $4.9m + his bracelet
A 2nd place finish in The Big One for One Drop, $1m buy-in, for $6m

He’s ranked as #1 on the all-time money list for Germany, and 8th in the world.

He was ranked as the #1 poker player in the world in 2016 as well as being ranked #1 in the world for online poker in 2014 and 2015.

My conversation with Fedor covers what got him into the game, his unique perspectives on poker and life, what it was like to truly achieve poker greatness and reach the top, and finally, his surprising decision to leave the game.

He’ll let you in on the importance of physical tells in live poker and what you should be looking for, as well as why you should stop looking for cut and dry solutions and instead strive to build your poker strategy around logic.

Oh and you’ll also learn Fedor’s method to super-accelerate your learning and the amazing results he’s achieved simply by connecting talented people to one another.

By the time you’ve finished listening to this podcast, you will undoubtedly be inspired to get to work on something you are passionate about, no matter what that might be.

Thank you very much once again for listening and now...This is Chasing Poker Greatness featuring Fedor Holz.
Jan 14, 2020
#25 Tommy Angelo: Author Elements of Poker, World Class Poker Coach
My guest today has had a tremendous influence on the game of poker both online and off through his perspectives on game strategy, coaching techniques, mental health, and more.

My conversation today is with pro poker player, coach, and author, Tommy Angelo.

Tommy has been playing poker professionally since the mid 80’s, preferring to play almost exclusively in live cash games. Having already accrued more than a decade of pro poker experience when most people were just beginning to discover and play the game, he quickly found himself with a successful coaching career as the popularity of poker began to grow and online games exploded.

Still one of the most popular books among serious poker players, Tommy’s first book, Elements of Poker, was released in December of 2007. Since then he’s written four more books on poker and one on the topic of meditation — something he has practiced daily without missing a day for more than 15 years.

Tommy has also either written or regularly writes for many popular poker publications including Poker Digest,, Bluff Magazine, and PokerNews as well as being a regular poster on the 2+2 poker forums — where, by the way, he inadvertently became the creator of the name “the hijack” for the seat at the table just before the button and cutoff.

He has coached some of the most well-known professional players in poker over the years and is highly regarded among them for his unique way of looking at the game and his invaluable advice about how to deal with the tough mental aspects of playing cards for a living.

During our talk, you’ll hear countless bits of wisdom that will undoubtedly help guide you on your path to poker greatness.

Thanks again for listening. And now...Mister Tommy Angelo on Chasing Poker Greatness.
Jan 10, 2020
#24 Arlie Shaban: PokerStars Team Pro Online, Run It Up Ambassador, & Tireless Twitch Streamer
Today’s guest is Canadian online tournament specialist and prolific Twitch streamer (And Big Brother Canada participant), Arlie Shaban.

For Arlie, poker and streaming are inseparable.

He’s made a name for himself not just because of his poker ability, but also because of his relentless pursuit to be one of the biggest and best poker streamers on Twitch.

Without a doubt he is one of the hardest working human beings in the game today.

In a tale as old as time Arlie quit his job, decided to play poker for a living and began his streaming career 15 days later.

To prove himself to his peers and his audience, he set out to do something nobody else had done. He logged 1000 hours of broadcast time by streaming for more than 120 consecutive days. His personal record is a single streaming session lasting more than 40 straight hours.

No other poker streamer on Twitch has put in as many live hours online as Arlie since the day he started streaming.

Because of his poker prowess and streaming persistence, he has amassed more than 30,000 followers on Twitch and is now a member of PokerStars Team Pro Online as well as a RunItUp Ambassador.

You’ll find Arlie on Twitch regularly, of course, streaming MTT sessions on PokerSTars, of course.

During our conversation today, Arlie shares his views on what can be accomplished with hard work and good planning. He is, himself, a perfect living example of exactly what can happen.

You’ll hear why he wanted to play poker in the first place, the risks he took to try to become a professional player, and the immense amount of work and sacrifice that got him to where he is now.

Arlie is a shining example of how a “regular guy” can achieve a dream and make it as a professional poker player even if they don’t have a massive bankroll, didn’t start in the early 2000’s, or have the luxury of being able to study all day long.

If you’ve got the desire and the drive, Arlie just might have the advice that’ll light that fire in you and set you on a new path…

Thanks again for listening. This is Chasing Poker Greatness with Arlie Shaban.
Jan 07, 2020
#23 Ryan LaPlante: WSOP Bracelet Winner, $2.4 Million in Winnings, Founder of LearnProPoker
I’m your host, Brad Wilson, and my conversation today is with tournament wizard and WSOP bracelet winner Ryan LaPlante.

Ryan is GTO expert who battles in the live and online streets of no limit hold ‘em and PLO.

On the WSOP circuit alone, he’s recorded 69 in-the-money finishes and collected winnings worth more than $1.2 million. His most recent cash was at the Poker Masters tournament where he took first place and the first prize of $186,000. All together, he’s amassed more than $2.4 million in winnings at live tournaments.

He has been a content creator and coach on several of the most reputable poker coaching sites on the Internet and has now launched his own at, where he shares the very same strategies and techniques that he has been using to crush the games and generate massive profits.

During our conversation, Ryan reveals a unique perspective on poker that moves back and forth between strong technical strategy and deep philosophical lessons to be learned. He’ll give you his recipe for winning the game, and winning at life. He also explains how his passion for the game has grown into a passion for helping and teaching others who want to learn and succeed in the world of poker.

As a coach, teacher, player, and human being Ryan is a blessing and massive boon to the poker world.

If you’re a tournament player chasing poker greatness, you’ll have a hard time finding a better example to follow on the felt than Ryan.

Once again, thank you for joining me. And now, Chasing Poker Greatness featuring Mr Ryan LaPlante...
Jan 03, 2020
#22 Matt Savage: A Giant in Poker Innovation and Pioneering
Matt is the Executive Tour Director for the World Poker Tour (WPT) and holds the record for officiating over the most episodes of televised poker, with more than 400 under his belt.

He has overseen some of the biggest tournaments that poker has to offer, including the World Series Of Poker from 2002 to 2004, and too many WPTs to count.

He also currently serves as tournament director for several well-known casinos and card rooms including my old stomping grounds the Commerce Casino, Bay 101, and Thunder Valley.

He has worked with many television networks including:

Fox News
Travel Channel

He is a co-founder of the Tournament Directors Association, was an inaugural inductee into the Poker Room Manager's Hall of Fame in 2003, and has been nominated five times for the Poker Hall of Fame.

Matt has a unique perspective on the game, with direct access to players and behind-the-scenes events that even journalists don’t usually see.

During our conversation you’ll hear stories about Chip Reese, Doyle Brunson, running the WSOP in the old days (Which includes running out of chips and not having enough space to accommodate an unexpectedly massive field), and even how Matt almost accidentally squashed the Moneymaker boom before it ever began.

He’ll also explain why he very much regrets introducing the concept of re-entries to tournament poker.

Matt is a true poker innovator, pioneer, and genuine asset to this game we all hold so near and dear to our hearts.

It isn’t hyperbole when I say that wherever poker tournaments are spread worldwide, if you look close enough, you’ll be able to spot Matt’s fingerprints on the structure and design.

So without any further ado, I bring to you one of the most influential human beans in the history of poker … this is Matt Savage on Chasing Poker Greatness.
Dec 20, 2019
#21 Sarah Herring: Poker Journalist of the Year and Face of PokerNews
Today I’m going to be speaking with GPA Poker Journalist of the Year, interviewer, deep thinker, storyteller, and all-around amazing human being, Sarah Herring.

Sarah has been writing for PokerNews since 2011 and is one of the most visible editor/writers to appear in the publication. She has interviewed pretty much every single elite poker player on the planet, has a ridiculously long list of published articles, and is also the co-host for the PokerNews podcast.

Sarah and I’s conversation is wide ranging and takes us through her life in Hollywood and film, a stint in the clink (True Story), and dives into how life’s setbacks often lead us down unforeseen paths where we discover the real treasures of the human experience (Love, friendships, and adventure).

We also cover Sarah’s poker origin story that involves a giant pair of brass knuckles and her then-boyfriend, now husband, MMA fighter Heath “Crazy Horse” Herring.

Sarah is such a delight and warm human being that just through hearing her stories, honesty, and outlook on life, you leave the conversation feeling happy and energized.

As our conversation unfolds she’ll talk about what it’s like being in constant contact with some of poker’s elite high-rollers, her impressions of the overall professional player pool, and how, despite our canyon like differences in beliefs, all human beings are more similar than you might think.

My conversation with Sarah was one of the most fun and enjoyable ones that I have ever had and so, without any further ado, I present to you Global Poker Awards Journalist of the Year Sarah Herring.
Dec 17, 2019
#20 Matt Vaughan: Vlogger, Creator, and Poker Coach
At only 28 years old, Matt Vaughan has been playing poker for more than 10 years.

He started off like many players, at the microstakes online and as he moved up stakes he realized he could support himself playing poker and quit his 9 to 5 job at a medical software company.

Not long after, he created his vlog on YouTube and, close to 15 thousand subscribers later, the rest is history.

Starting off with a off-beat video about a cat, his channel has grown into a wealth of poker information mostly through his in-depth hand analysis.

While Matt isn’t 100% a professional poker player, in his own words he “plays poker about as much as one can play it without actually being a full-time professional player”.

He’s had success in both the live and online poker arenas in both cash and tournament formats.

Like yours truly, he spends considerably more of his time in cash games, but has still racked up more than $215,000 in winnings over the last few years.

He also does strategy and coaching work through the poker training site School of Cards and can be found on a semi-regular schedule streaming his play through Twitch.

During our conversation, Matt will share some awesome insights on vlogging and YouTube that will prove extremely valuable if you have any interest in following that path.

He also reveals his thoughts on the emotional and mental ups and downs that come with playing poker, the key points he uses to build strategies for both general and specific player pools, and, of course, the events that have had the greatest impact on his journey as he chases poker greatness.

So without any further ado, I present to you Matt Vaughan on Chasing Poker Greatness.
Dec 13, 2019
#19 Sky Matsuhashi: Author & Optimal Poker Study Authority
Today I’m going to be speaking with someone who just might be the happiest and most optimistic guest I’ve had the pleasure of speaking with on the show so far, Mr. Sky Matsuhashi.

For many of you, Sky probably needs no introduction. Although he doesn’t classify himself as a professional poker player, Sky has been involved with the game in one way or another for about the last 16 years as a player, coach, author, and prolific content creator.

Sky’s career in the world of poker began when he decided to put up a blog called

Over the last few years, that blog has grown from a small outlet for his thoughts into the thriving centerpiece of a small empire built on teaching others the art of how to truly study poker and improve their own game.

Sky regularly produces the SmartPokerStudy podcast which now boasts more than 260 episodes. He’s given countless webinars and has put together stand-alone courses designed to help micro and small stakes players take their game to the next level.

He’s also developed “5 minute poker study”, a program designed to give you real training and results in quick, digestible, 5 minute bites.
He runs, an ongoing coaching program that is in a constant state of growth and development as Sky works tirelessly to ensure his students are always getting 100% of the value he’s capable of producing.

Sky is also the author of How To Study Poker: Volumes 1 & 2 as well as Preflop Online Poker.

If you’ve ever found yourself trying to -quote-unquote- “study” a poker concept only to find that you didn’t really absorb much of it when you returned to the tables, Sky’s the man you want to talk to.

During our conversation, he reveals some brilliant insights into how he looks at the game, what should be going on in your minds on and off the felt as you play, and how to create the habits that will ultimately lead you to more success.

Before we get started, let me also tip you off that you should pay particular attention during this episode. Not only did Sky provide some great information during our talk, but he also created a special video treat exclusively for Chasing Poker Greatness listeners.

Thank you once again for listening and without any further ado, this is Chasing Poker Greatness featuring Sky Matsuhashi.
Dec 10, 2019
#18 Jennifer Shahade: Team PokerStars, Author, Podcaster, and Speaker
In this episode, I’m going to be speaking with one of the hardest working human beings to ever step into the world of poker, Jennifer Shahade.

Jennifer has a list of credits, accomplishments, and accolades that most people could only dream of achieving and she doesn’t appear to be anywhere close to stopping anytime soon.

Before poker, she first showed her impressive talent for strategic games in the world of chess. She became a National Master at the age of 16 and was the first female to win the US Junior Open. She has won two US Chess Women’s Championship titles as well as a silver Olympic medal.

Jennifer is currently the Women’s Program Director at US Chess, acting as an Ambassador, host, and fundraiser. She’s also a board member at the World Chess Hall of Fame and hosts Grand Chess Tour events with top players all over the world.

In addition to being the author of two books about the game of chess, Chess Bitch: Women in the Intellectual Sport and Play Like a Girl: Tactics by 9 Queens, she also hosts the Ladies Knight — that’s knight with a K — chess podcast.

She’s also, of course, made a name for herself in poker, currently working as the MindSports Ambassador at PokerStars.

To name just a few of the highlights from her poker career, she took down the Open Face Poker championship in Prague — a tournament she hadn’t even planned to play in — she made it down to the final four of the PokerStars-sponsored winner-take-all Shark Cage, and became the first female coach at Run It Once, where she put together poker strategy videos from 2014 to 2018.

She also hosts her own poker podcast, “The Grid” where she discusses a specific Hold’em starting hands with a different guest in each episode. Her goal is to go through the entire grid of 169 possible starting hands. At the time of this interview, there are 21 episodes sitting and waiting for you to listen to.

She’s also given a TedX talk in Baltimore, guest lectures at MIT, Yale, and her alma mater, NYU, and speeches at the Philadelphia Art Museum, Dali Museum, and Oakland Museum of Contemporary Art.

As if all of that weren’t enough, she and her husband also work together to create fantastic art pieces that have been featured in such places as the Boston Sculptors Gallery, Contemporary Museum in Saint Louis, the Dali Museum, and the Francis Naumann Art Gallery.

As you’ve probably guessed by now, Jennifer’s a grade A certified badass and just reading her list of accomplishments makes me feel like a lazy bum in comparison.

The opportunity to hear her words, advice, wisdom, and warnings are invaluable.

So once again, this is Brad Wilson, and without any further ado here’s my conversation with the amazing Jennifer Shahade on Chasing Poker Greatness.
Dec 06, 2019
#17 Barry Carter: Co-Author Mental Game of Poker 1 & 2 And Poker Satellite Strategy
Barry has written for both online and print magazines as well as having had a hand in writing and publishing the most successful poker book ever written, The Mental Game of Poker (Which, coincidentally, is the most often suggested reading material by my “Chasing Poker Greatness” guests).

In addition to “The Mental Game of Poker”, Barry has also co-authored The Mental Game Of Poker 2 with Jared Tendler and "Poker Satellite Strategy" with Dara O’ Kearney.

On the media side, Barry has written and contributed to WPT magazine, PokerNews Magazine, Inside Poker Business, Poker Pro Europe, CardPlayer Magazine, and more.

He’s the former chief editor for PokerNews UK, where he spent just over five years in charge of all content and live reporting and today Barry is’s chief editor who is responsible for managing just about all of the content that appears on the site.

During our conversation, he walks us through some of the history of poker and poker media, and expands on how the relationship between the two has changed over the years. He speaks about the evolution of poker and how the game has changed his life.

You’ll hear what it was like to experience Black Friday from the inside and get some opinions and insights into some of the most high-profile cheating scandals that have rocked the poker world both before and after that fateful day.

Very few people have the kind of access that Barry has to the inside world of the poker industry and today’s show is a rare opportunity to peak behind the curtains and get an insider’s view of a world us regular old poker players rarely get to see.

And so, without any further ado, this is award-winning poker journalist and best-selling author Barry Carter on Chasing Poker Greatness.
Dec 03, 2019
#16 Elliot Roe: Hypnotherapist and Mindset Coach of Poker's Elite
My guest today is mental game expert and hypnotherapist Elliot Roe.

Elliot is the master of helping folks:

- Identify and extinguish their fears on the green felt
- Clear and focus their minds
- Remove their own mental roadblocks
- And achieve their goals … regardless of how audacious they may be.

Elliot has worked one on one with more than 200 individual poker players including:

Future Chasing Poker Greatness guest Fedor Holz - former #1 ranked player with more than $32 million in winnings
Former Chasing Poker Greatness guests Jonathan Little, Matt Berkey, and Jeff Gross.
2017 WSOP Main event champion Scott Blumstein
Super High Roller champion Brian Rast
Former #1 world-ranked player Alex Foxen
WSOP $50k high-roller winner Ben Heath
And the list goes on.

They all credit Elliot with helping them to manage tilt, remain calm and focused during some of their most stressful moments of their life, and create a healthy, sustainable mindset that allows them to continue to evolve and compete at the highest of high levels..

Elliot also produces two podcasts, one of which, The Mindset Advantage, was specifically created to help poker players improve their mental game.

He regularly publishes highly informative self-help and mental game articles on his own blog and, as if all of that wasn’t enough, he created the guided mindset enhancement app Primed Mind.

During our conversation, Elliot reveals some of his most successful techniques for conquering your fears, changing your thought processes, and even how to analyze your own mind to figure out where your worst mental-game issues are coming from.

While there isn’t much in the way of strategic x’s and o’s in this episode, I’m going to make a bold claim and say that Elliot’s wisdom on dealing with your emotions while playing poker is more valuable than any single piece of strategic poker advice you’ll ever receive.

As the greatest poker player of all time Chip Reese once said when asked about what separates him from the living legends he battled against on a daily basis:

“Some players have a better A game than me but the difference is their D game is a lot worse than their A game, whereas my A game and D game aren’t that different.”

Elliot’s genius lies in guiding folks to do just that … elevating their D game so that it looks very similar to their A game.

And now, without any further ado, here’s my conversation with Elliot Roe on “Chasing Poker Greatness”.
Nov 26, 2019
#15 Joe Stapleton: Comedian, Poker Commentator, Upward Failer
As well as being a successful comedian, my guest today is known as one of the most popular and entertaining poker commentators to ever pick up a mic.

Joe Stapleton, known to most as “Stapes”, has been an active poker commentator for over a decade.

Gaining immediate acceptance in the poker industry, Joe received a reader’s choice award from Bluff magazine during his very first year on the job. Since then, he has served as commentator and host on many of the industry’s most successful television shows.

You may have heard his unmistakable voice and wit on the Pokerstars.Net Big Game, the NHL Alumni Charity Shootout, the Deepstacks Poker Tour, or the Deepstacks Western New York Poker Championship.

He’s also served as the host of several shows including:

Shark Cage
Poker Night In America
Poker Night Live

Outside the realm of poker, he’s found plenty of success in the stand-up comedy world. He’s worked on MAD TV and made a brief appearance in the Netlfix/Adam Sandler film “The Week Of” and wrote the comedy short film The Lost Archives of Quincy Taylor.

During our conversation Joe reveals that there is quite a lot of substance and deep thinking under the surface of a man that has spent much of his adult life just trying to make people laugh.

He’ll talk about everything from his biggest joy to some of his deepest pains, the amazing and long lasting effects of simply not being a dick, why he believes he caused Black Friday, and even the surprising way that he deals with Internet trolls that will hit you square in the feels.

This talk with one of poker’s biggest and brightest television personalities is one that you’ll be glad you didn’t miss.

Without any fruther ado, this is Joe “Stapes” Stapleton on Chasing Poker Greatness...
Nov 26, 2019
#14 Jeff Gross: Team PartyPoker, $4 Million+ in Tourney Wins, and High Stakes Cash Games Crusher
Today on Chasing Poker Greatness I'm going to be conversing with PartyPoker Team Online pro and Twitch streamer extraordinaire, Jeff Gross.

Jeff’s been playing poker online and live for about 15 years and boasts a very impressive a very impressive resume with over $4 million in tournament winnings.

At the time of recording, Pocket Fives poker database ranks Jeff at number 104 worldwide.

Their numbers, of course, confirm his impressive earnings on the online streets with:

- $949,000 at PokerStars
- $370,000 at PartyPoker
- $291,000 at Full Tilt
- $147,000 at America’s Card Room

And finally, the Hendon Mob database credits Jeff with over $3,250,000 in live tournament winnings and over $1.4 million in online earnings.

He also keeps himself busy streaming on Twitch, growing his YouTube channel, and producing his own podcast "The Flow Show" on

During the conversation, Jeff will let you in on his views about studying and what it takes to keep up with an ever-evolving game like poker, the importance of the people you keep around you, and the effects of how you interact with your peers at and away from the tables.

You’ll hear about the first major tournament cash that really set Jeff on the path to becoming a professional player, how black Friday changed his career and his approach to both poker and life, and plenty more.

Without any further ado, this is Jeff Gross on Chasing Poker Greatness...
Nov 22, 2019
#13 Matt Staples: PartyPoker Team Online & Future World #1 Twitch Streamer
Welcome back to the Chasing Poker Greatness podcast. This is your host, Brad Wilson, and today I’m sitting down for a conversation with Twitch superstar and mid-stakes tournament grinder Matty Staples.

Spending nearly all of his time playing in online tournaments, Matt is currently a member of Team PartyPoker.

By his own estimation, about 99.9% of his tournament poker career has been streamed live online as he’s played.

Matt generally streams mid-stakes but has been known to test his skills in events with buy-ins as high as $500 and $1000 as well. This past May he took down the biggest cash of his career when he finished third in the PokerStars Sunday Million for $92,812.18.

Matt is the rare breed of player who started out online with a miniscule bankroll and reached his current lofty status by simply grinding, learning, winning, and growing without adding any outside money. After getting his start a few years ago with about $20, his bankroll today is estimated to be around $160,000.

At the fresh young age of 24, Matt is a perfect example of what it means to dive in, work hard, and chase poker greatness. He’s living proof that if you want to start making a living through playing this card game even in today’s day and age it is still possibl

During the course of our conversation he talks about how he got started with the game, where he began to make the transition to a professional player, and what changed the way he thinks about the game, allowing him to go farther than he ever thought he would. You’ll hear what he likes the most, what he’d change if he could, and the key advice he’d give to any new player.

So, once again, thank you for joining me on Chasing Poker Greatness. Here is my conversation with stream and lamp lover extraordinaire Matt Staples...
Nov 19, 2019
#12 DGAF: High Stakes Cash Game Legend
Today’s guest is live cash game crusher, online personality, and my good friend DGAF.

DGAF is one of the best professional live cash poker players in the world. He’s been playing poker as a pro since 2007 (and saying he’s going to quit since about 2012). He’s a personal friend; someone I’ve had the pleasure and the honor of playing the game with, and against, during my own poker career.

We talk about what got him started with poker, how he became a professional player and his thoughts on eventually getting out of the game.

He’ll share the reasoning behind his somewhat paradoxical views on why you should love the game, why you should work to get better, and why shouldn’t be looking to make poker your full-time job and career.

For more than ten years now, he’s been crushing high-stakes live poker games. As any poker pro will tell you, though, it’s not all roses and rainbows. From huge highs to rock bottom lows, shady people, and even a brush with the Hell’s Angels, he explains what daily life in card rooms and casinos can be like.

His posts on the 2+2 poker forums have earned more than 2 million, yes that’s MILLION, views.

He’s a successful podcaster himself, publishing not one but two well-reviewed podcasts.

He co-hosts the mental health “call-in”, or should I say “mail-in” show, Solicited Advice, where “a psychiatrist and professional poker player get together once a week to record a podcast over some Belgian beers.” (Their description, not mine)

He also headlines his own podcast, (DGAF’s Poker) Sessions, where he chronicles his adventures getting back to even from $250k worth of debt with no bankroll.

He’ll soon publish a book about his life and adventures in poker titled “The Long Run…” and he’s put together a collection of some of the coolest poker apparel and accessories to hit the market at

He is, without a doubt, one of the best-liked and most respected players to ever take a seat at a poker table and it truly is an honor to have him with me as today’s guest. I can only hope you enjoy listening as much as I enjoyed recording this episode.

So let’s jump in and let DGAF speak for himself...
Nov 15, 2019
#11 Daniel "Jungleman" Cates: Poker's Version of Alexander the Great
in today’s episode, I have the pleasure of sitting down for a talk with an all-time poker legend and future hall of famer, Dan “Jungelman” Cates.

As poker’s version of Alexander the Great, Jungleman has conquered pretty much all there is to conquer in the poker world at the ripe old age of 29.

At 21 years old he accepted the “Durrr” challenge and blistered Mr. Dwan so badly that the challenge still hasn’t been completed 9 years later (He's now slated to face off against Phil Galfond in the Phil Galfond challenge as well).

He’s racked up $7 million+ in poker tournament winnings despite spending the majority of his time battling in high stakes cash games where he most likely employees a dragon or 2 to guard the entrance to the vault of riches he’s won in said games.

He’s been documented in playing as big as $6k/$12k in Bobby’s room but I think I can safely say that where there exists the biggest cash game in the world … there’s almost always a Jungleman lurking.

He is, without a doubt, one of the most feared poker and respected players in the game today.

During our conversation you’ll learn:

- The concept of “reverse game selection” and how Jungleman used the tactic as rocket fuel to surge through the online ranks.

- The importance of overcoming your emotions that cloud your logic and

- Why working by yourself is inferior to using the knowledge of other people

And much much more!

So sit back, listen, and learn how an introverted 17-year-old kid with a video game obsession became one of poker’s living legends before hitting the big 3-0.

Without any further ado ... Click download below and sit back, relax and enjoy my conversation with Dan "Jungleman" Cates on Chasing Poker Greatness.
Nov 12, 2019
#10 Jonathan Little: 2x WPT Champ, $7 Million+, 14x Poker Strategy Author
Today I’m speaking with the 2007 WPT player of the year Jonathan Little.

Jonathan is a 2 time WPT tournament champion with more than $6.8 million in tournament wins. He’s also published 14 of the most high impact poker strategy books on the market … with number 15 and 16 hitting shelves in the near future.

And not only is Jonathan a tournament crusher extraordinaire, as the founder of he’s also a world-class coach who creates all kinds of amazing strategic content across all major platforms.

He also writes regularly for the largest poker website on the Internet,

I’m pretty sure we didn’t get into this much but I’m not quite sure when the man finds time to sleep.

But although he’s had great success, Jonathan is quick to point out that it wasn’t an easy path to get to where he is now. He’s also pretty clear about the fact that, counterintuitively, he doesn’t believe that he possesses many of the qualities that most people associate with successful professional poker players. But that most certainly hasn’t stopped him.

Jonathan is a perfect example of what you can achieve through hard work and dedication to your passion. During our conversation, you’ll hear how he got his start in poker, how he’s managed to keep improving and stay on top over the last 15 years, and what he’s thinking for the future. I’m sure you’ll also love his great insights into the game, what it takes to learn and improve, and the benefits of both teaching others and working with coaches.

There are few people in the game who work so tirelessly in trying to help others learn how to play cards, no matter what level they play at or wish to reach.

Jon was a joy to speak to and an absolute gold mine for dispensing poker wisdom.

So without any further ado ... I present to you, world champion poker player, prolific poker author, and world-class poker coach, Mister Jonathan Little.
Nov 08, 2019
#9 Shaundle Pruitt: Crushing MTT's, Twitch Streaming, and Pure Grit
Today you’re going to hear from Shaundle Pruitt. Shaundle is an accomplished tournament player, streamer, and—as you might not expect—real estate agent.

He comes from a strong gamer background as a man who, surprise surprise, fell in love with strategy games at a young age.

Infatuated by the added element of luck in poker, he found success at micro stakes cash games online before turning his attention and energy to online tournies.

Shaundle had built up his bankroll to the point where he felt comfortable firing at $500 and $1k buy-in tourneys until a fateful day in mid-April of 2011 changed everything.

Shaundle had just binked a tourney for $5k on his BIRTHDAY, April 14th, when all of a sudden *POOF* online poker disappeared overnight. I guess there’s a lot that can happen in life but I’m gonna go out on a limb and say this has to rank up there in worst birthday memories of all time for Shaundle.

After Black Friday, Shaundle couldn’t bring himself to continue playing the game he had invest so much of his heart and soul into anymore and quit playing poker for about 4 years before eventually returning to the game.

As is par for the course, the man has had some big ups and big downs over his career, but if there’s one adjective I would use to describe him it would be this: gritty. He’s never stays down for long and continues to grow and improve his game on a daily basis.

As we talk today, you’re going to hear what he considers his biggest success in poker, and his biggest failure too. He’ll let us in on any regrets he may be harboring and explain what has allowed him to thrive in online tournaments regardless of the year or the competition.

He’s got some great words of advice about what you should be thinking about — and what you shouldn’t — if you want to make it on the green felt. He’ll also let you in on some secrets for finding methods of study that will improve anyone and everyone’s game.

Shaundle is a shining example of what perseverance and hard work can get you if you’re willing to put in the time and chase your dreams.

And so, if you’re ready to do what it takes to be successful in Chasing Poker Greatness, Mr Shaundle Pruitt has most definitely got some advice for you…

Let’s get to it.
Nov 05, 2019
#8 Maurice Hawkins: $4 Million, 13 Rings, WSOP Circuit GOAT
Maurice currently holds the record for both earnings and titles on the World Series Of Poker Circuit.

He has earned more than $1.7 million on the WSOP circuit and is the proud owner of an astonishing 13 gold rings (Now 14!), including 4 from main events.

He made his first tournament cash back in 2005 and has since managed to reach 86 final tables, raking in lifetime wins worth more than three and a half million dollars in the process.

He exudes confidence and has every reason to do so.

As our conversation progresses, Maurice will let you in on what changed his mind and turned a future heart surgeon into one of the best tournament poker players in the world.

He will also, of course, shed some light on what has helped and hindered him on his poker journey.

I absolutely loved his thoughts and views on game theory as well as his disdain of everything “standard”. Maurice also dives into the importance of family, happiness, and life away from the green felt.

The man shoots from the hip and pulls no punches. He’s not afraid to say what he thinks about himself or the game. What you see is what you get, and in our conversation he was very, very generous with dispensing his wisdom.

And so, without any further ado, I give you the winningest WSOPC tournament player of all time, Maurice Hawkins…
Nov 01, 2019
#7 Scott Long: Co-Founder of Ante Up Magazine
Today I’m going to be talking with co-founder, publisher, and business operations manager of Ante Up Magazine, Scott Long.

Ante Up is the most widely distributed poker magazine in the United States and has managed to survive where so many other prominent poker magazines have failed.

Scott and his partner, Chris, worked together at the St. Petersburg Times, which was Florida’s largest newspaper publication. In 2008, when they were told a project they were both passionate about wasn’t going to get the funding they thought it deserved, they decided to quit their good-paying jobs and risk it all by going out on their own.

Ante Up Magazine was born and they haven’t looked back since.

Ante Up is a unique poker magazine, aimed squarely at the recreational player. Rather than just covering the big tournaments and pros, Ante Up gives recreational players real and relevant information about the games they play. From getting more out of weekend home games to finding the best places for organized amateur games, Ante Up caters to the vast majority of poker players who aren’t professionals.

Over the years, Ante Up has spawned several other features and events that have taken things farther than Scott ever thought he would go. Ante Up publishes a weekly podcast hosted by Scott and Chris, runs regular poker cruises, and even hosts their own poker tour.

Scott has proven to be one of the most influential poker ambassadors in the industry. His views from inside and outside the game, and especially within the recreational player community, give him great insights into the game, how it’s played, and the real people who play it.

As we talk today, Scott will share how and why he and his partner decided to create Ante Up, what it was like in the beginning, and why they’re still around when so much of their competition has disappeared,

He talks about the dangers of making too many assumptions and how he deals with failures.

You’ll hear what he values the most and what, to him, embodies poker greatness. He’ll speak on the importance of adapting as you grow, why they call him the short stack ninja, and the concept of card destiny.

Click any of the icons below, sit back, relax and enjoy my conversation with Scott Long on Chasing Poker Greatness.
Oct 29, 2019
#6 Jack Laskey: How-To Use Poker as Preparation For Life
Today I have the pleasure of sitting with the co-host of JustHandsPoker Jack Laskey.

At 25 years old, it’s safe to say he’s one of the most experienced young players currently in the game and speaks with a wisdom well beyond his years.

He’s enjoyed success in the online and live poker world since turning 18 in 2012, although his career and love for the game go back quite a bit before then … like, it started when we was 12 years old … TWELVE!

Jack is currently a mid-stakes live cash game specialist who currently spends most of his table time playing in private games in New York City.

You can find him at where him and his co-host Zach do an amazing job of in-depth hand analysis.

At the site, you’ll find a weekly podcast, poker strategy blog, and access to coaching services, among other things.

He’s also signed on as a mid-stakes coach at Solve For Why, a training site created by another “Chasing Poker Greatness” podcast guest Matt Berkey that focuses specifically on live poker strategy.

In Jack and I’s conversation you'll hear us talk about:

- What poker can teach you about life.

- The benefits of making negative EV moves.

- Why you should learn to make decisions and act quickly at the table. - Why you should be questioning all common poker advice.

- And much more.

Jack’s an amazingly deep thinker who asks a lot of philosophical questions. It’s clear that in his mind, there's a thin line of separation between poker and life.

He finds a way to use almost everything from one world to sharpen his senses and improve his actions in the other.

Many of the answers he gives to my questions weave in and out between poker and life, but somehow they all make perfect sense and leave you with a feeling that you’ve just been given a new perspective in which to think about things.

I loved talking to Jack so much that we went WAY over the normal 1 hour in what felt like 10 or 15 minutes and, even after we turned the recording off, still kept going for another 30 minutes.

So settle in and get ready to look at your game, and possibly your life, in a whole new way.

Click play now to listen to my conversation with Jack Laskey.
Oct 25, 2019
#5 Lyle Bateman: Managing Editor of PokerNews Canada
Today’s guest on Chasing Poker Greatness is Lyle Bateman.

For those who aren’t familiar with his name, Lyle is a contributing editor at PokerNews Canada.

He began writing for the magazine after he was discovered by then Chief Editor Lane Anderson. Lane saw a blog post that Lyle had written, which he’ll tell you about during our conversation, and asked him if he’d be interested in writing something for PokerNews. The rest, as they say, is history.

Full showpage here:
Play on PKC Poker here:

Lyle has a long list of articles published, going all the way back to 2013. He specializes in covering some of poker’s biggest events. He’s written on just about all of the world’s top live and online tournaments.

He’s an avid online poker tournament player himself and conducts his own poker stream on Twitch.

Lyle is most certainly one of poker’s greatest ambassadors. It’s easy to see that he has a genuine love for being around the game as well as mingling with many of the world’s greatest players as he does his job.

As we talk today, Lyle will share stories about what got him into poker, why he actually sold the first big tournament ticket he ever won, and the strange way his life has gone from working in insufferable heat in Africa to working in insufferable cold in Canada.

He speaks about why he prefers tournaments to cash games, what it’s like to be a part of the press covering live tournaments, and why he likes to have an audience watching when he plays himself.

You’ll also hear some interesting, insightful, and unique advice from someone who is intimately involved with the professional poker world, yet not a professional poker player himself.

His unique viewpoint from somewhere in between inside and outside the game reveals a perspective that few people have.

Also, *HINT* ... if you'd like to get more (or less) coverage when playing live poker tournaments, this is an episode you do not want to miss.

Lyle is an amazing guy to talk to, and very easy to listen to as he moves from one story to another.

He’s also someone that you just might be talking with yourself one day as you get closer to your goals while Chasing Poker Greatness.

And so without any further ado, click that download or play button to listen to my awesome conversation with Lyle Bateman
Oct 17, 2019
#4 Q: Harnessing Vulnerability to Power Your Poker Career
Today I’m speaking with one of the most fun and animated women to ever mix it up on the green felt.

Known simply as “Q”, she recently began publishing a chronicle of her own poker plays and thoughts through the ”P’s and Q’s Poker Vlog” on YouTube and it has skyrocketed in popularity.

Full showpage:
Play on PKC Poker:

She’s a well-established cash game player who admittedly likes to take advantage of the men at the table who underestimate her simply because she’s a woman. By the time you get to the end of this episode you’ll understand what a big mistake it really is to underestimate Q.

To say that Q is determined to reach her goals and dreams would be a gross understatement. I don’t want to spoil anything ahead. As we move through the conversation, though, you’ll learn not only how she’s already far along the path to poker greatness, but also how she’s willing to push it all to the side, start over, and do it again.

You’ll get her views on what it means to be great in the world of poker, how she’s been able to keep growing consistently, and her somewhat unusual ideas on how to find and utilize coaches.

She’ll even share her best advice on what to do if you can’t find a coach to help you with your own game.

In what has become a sort of regular theme that many guests seem to talk about naturally, Q goes into quite a bit of detail about how the things we learn from playing poker can affect our lives away from the game and vice versa.

She’s got opinions on just about every facet of the game and the people who play it and she’s not afraid to express them. She also has a very special quality of always speaking in a way that gets her point across with respect, and very often with humor.

Q is such a delight to listen to and I had such a blast talking with her. Can't wait for Round 2 in the future!

So without any further ado, download my conversation with Q and don't forget to subscribe!
Oct 17, 2019
#3 Jesse Yaginuma: A World Class Poker Combatant
Today I’m talking with a good friend of mine Jesse Yaginuma.

Jesse’s been playing poker professionally since 2006. He started his career in Maryland on the East Coast but has called sunny California home for the last 8 years.

Full showpage:

Jesse’s a world class player in both cash games (His specialty ... Where him and I first crossed paths and he promptly crushed me in a $10k pot) and tournaments (with $1.9 million in lifetime winnings while playing a limited schedule).

As with any poker player things haven’t always gone Jesse’s way and he’ll explain how he deals with the blissful upswings and the horrible, existential crisis causing downswings that come with a career playing cards.

Jesse has a natural interest in psychology and is extremely driven to learn all he can about the “why” human beings do the things they do.

He shares his wisdom on what you can do to keep your mind right, what he does to optimize his own mental health, and the sheer physical energy that your brain consumes when you take on a task as mentally draining as poker.

Jesse has a reputation for being the calmest person at the table no matter where he plays; a testament to his envious ability to always keep his head in the game and his emotions in check.

As we talk today, you’ll learn how he started his poker career, the super valuable tools and lessons he’s used for growth, and how he rejuvenated his game after realizing he had grown a little stagnant over the years.

He’ll talk about the importance of having a good network of people around you, how he feels about some of the most common modern poker advice, and what advice he’d give himself if he could go back in time.

He also keeps mostly to himself on social media.
While you might see tons of pros all over poker forums, Twitter, and Instagram, Jesse stays fairly quiet and goes about his business mostly under the radar (Except when he’s at a WPT final table, of course)… which, given his personality and outlook on life, makes 100% sense to me.

So saddle-in and gear up for this rare opportunity to consume some value hand grenades from a world-class poker combatant … Click any of the links below to listen to my conversation with Jesse Yaginuma.
Oct 17, 2019
#2 Robbie Strazynski: Living The Dream in a World of Cards
Today I’m speaking with Robbie Strazynski, founder of

Robbie has made immeasurable contributions to the beautiful game of poker through his own blog as well as other poker media since he got started around 2009. He’s a well-respected member of the community who is admired by both the players and the fans.

Full showpage:
Play on PKC Poker:

Robbie knows and is known by many people in the poker world. He’s interviewed greats in the game like Daniel Negreanu, Phil Helmuth, and Phil Ivey.

Cardplayer Lifestyle is considered to be one of the top poker entertainment websites on the Internet. Robbie himself is the main writer and also acts as editor for all of the contributed content that he also publishes. The site delivers in-depth interviews with some of the most well-known industry faces, exciting news about happenings and invents, must-read strategy articles, and, of course, all kinds of articles about living the poker lifestyle.

In today’s episode you’ll get Robbie’s insights on what it means to reach the the level of high achievement—at poker or anything else, the players he considers to be truly great, and why.

He speaks on the benefits of keeping your brain active by playing poker as well as other ways that the game can benefit you when you’re away from the table.

He explains how he learned to stop thinking about the money and just play the game as he tells an amazing comeback story that starts with him losing all of the money he took with him to the WSOP.

Robbie also relates two quite personal stories, one about Daniel Negreanu and another about Phil Hellmuth, that will show you exactly why you shouldn’t always believe everything you see on TV.

I don’t want to give too much away here, so go ahead subscribe + download the show and dive into my conversation with Robbie Strazynski.
Oct 17, 2019
#1 Matt Berkey: Surviving and Thriving in Poker's Nosebleeds
What is UP Enhance Your Edge NATION?!

I could not be more excited to share with you my conversation with guest Matt Berkey (Hereafter known as Berkey … poker players and their original nicknames, amirite?) a professional player since 2003 who’s known for playing in some of the highest of high stakes games on the planet—and that’s the way he likes it.

Episode showpage here:
Play on PKC here:

He’s gone from playing $1/$2 and $2/$5 games in college to claiming his seat among the world’s elite in the famed “Ivey’s Room” where he plays no-limit hold’em at stakes as high as $300/$600/$1200.

Not just a nose bleeds cash game crusher, Berkey also has over $4 million in lifetime tournament winnings to go along with 6 WSOP final tables despite playing a very limited tourney slate.

He also loves to write, whether it be for his own blog, print and online magazines, or as a contributor to the Huffington Post.

Being one who thrives with multiple balls in the air, Berkey’s also the founder of elite live cash game training site

During our conversation today you'll get Berkey’s input on what it means to be not just a good player but a good competitor at the table.

He’ll talk about his feelings on moving up stakes, the fear of taking shots, and how to overcome that fear.

He also has invaluable insights into game theory, exploitative play, and how to make sure that you’re always maximizing and increasing your edge.

Aside from all that, he’s got some great stories too.

Like a lot of players in their poker career, Berkey has won and lost millions of dollars—with the notable point that sometimes he does it in only one hand!

You’ll hear how he deals with the stellar highs of raking in seven figure pots as well as the crushing lows of watching a small fortune being pushed in someone else’s direction … and then being asked to pose for a picture with the dude that just won!

There are very few people in the poker world who can say they’ve seen and done as much as Berkey.

He’s truly a gift to the game, not just because he’s one of the elite players in the universe but also because he does everything in his power to give back to the great game of poker as well.

So what are you waiting for?

Click that subscribe and download button, sit back, relax and enjoy my conversation with Matt Berkey on Chasing Poker Greatness.
Oct 17, 2019
TRAILER: Daniel "Jungleman" Cates, Matt Berkey, Jack Laskey, Maurice Hawkins, and Matt Staples
"I’m Daniel Cates and I’m Chasing Poker Greatness."

"Hello, I’m Jeff Gross and I am Chasing Poker Greatness."

"This is Matt Staples and I’m Chasing Poker Greatness."

Chasing Poker Greatness Online:

Trailer for the upcoming poker podcast, "Chasing Poker Greatness"!

The show premiers with episodes 1-5 on Friday October 18th, followed by 2 new episode each and every week ... If you're looking for a clear path to poker success from some of the brightest folks in the game, take a moment to subscribe to the show.

Episodes 1-15 Release List:

#1. Matt Berkey
#2. Robbie
#3. Jesse
#4 Q
#5 Lyle Bateman
#6 Jack Laskey
#7 Maurice Hawkins
#8 Scott Long
#9 Shaundle
#10 Jonathan Little
#11 Jungleman
#12 DGAF
#13 Matt Staples
#14 Jeff Gross
#15 Scott Siever
Oct 09, 2019