Episode link: https://solveforwhy.io/programs/poker-out-loud-season-3?cid=2036725
Poker Out Loud was created by Solve For Why, an advanced poker training company. Solve For Why’s founder and lead instructor is Matt Berkey, a long-time high-stakes poker professional in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Poker Out Loud is a unique approach to poker training and entertainment. Top poker professionals play a cash game format, while all wearing noise-cancelling headphones. Before their actions, they speak their thoughts out loud, revealing to the audience their thought process and reasoning behind each poker decision.
Gracing the Solve For Why felt are six notable pros who’ve come to battle $5/$10 No-Limit Texas Hold’em, and everyone has put up their own money for a seat at the table. Each player started the session with $3,000 in chips, but there’s more in play at this point, with Christian Soto (Chin) having added on after doubling up Matt Berkey in Episode 1. Their noise-cancelling headphones serve to protect the players from being overheard while they verbalize their thoughts.
The second orbit starts with a rarity in a six-handed game: three players are dealt broadway hands, and the battle begins with some heat.
Jesse Sylvia opens the action from the hijack, raising A-K of spades to $25. Action folds to Nick Howard in the small blind, who says, “Something about this dynamic makes me want to play this hand above my range,” before flatting. Andrew Lichtenberger (Chewy) comes along, too, calling with K-Q offsuit. The 10s7d4h flop misses everyone entirely. Action checks to Jesse, who talks a bit about what he expects his opponents’ ranges to look like, explaining that both a check and a continuation have merit here. He checks back.
The Ah turn gives both Jesse and Nick top pair, as well as bringing in a gutshot for Chewy. Nick and Chewy check again, and Jesse says this is a mandatory bet for balance. He throws out 40%. “I’m calling going into the river thinking there’s probably very few zones I’m folding in,” says Nick as he calls. Chewy also calls, getting about 4.5:1 to draw to the nuts. When checked to on the 4s river (which pairs the board,) Jesse goes for a slight over-bet. Nick recognizes the danger of Jesse’s polarization combined with Chewy’s presence in the hand behind him and makes a tough lay-down.
Mid-hand, we heard from Nick in an interview setting about adjustments he’s made to his mental game since Season 1.
“At the end of the day, it’s just about having a more structurally-balanced perception over where edges generate in the game and how you can sustainably capture that edge. And I think that’s something I lacked. Up until recently, I thought I had to win more pots than I had to win. At 32, I think I can actually say I’ve cooled off as a player.” An hour into the action, he seems calm, collected, and determined to play his A-game in this tough lineup.
You can watch this episode in full, along with every other episode from all seasons of Poker Out Loud, at solveforwhy.io. Be sure to use promo code POLBLOG for 25% off your first month!