Chat with Joe Sebok
Sebok lost a bet once and had to wear a Robin costume.
Welcome to SportsNation! On Monday, professional poker player Joe Sebok stops by to chat about the upcoming final table of the 2009 World Series of Poker main event.
In under 5 years playing professionally, the California native has earned over $1.7 million. Sebok, along with his stepfather Barry Greenstein, co-founded PokerRoad.com, which is a multi-media outlet for poker, including Poker Radio and Poker TV.
When not playing poker, Sebok is also a fan of rock 'n' roll and was a founding drummer of the San Francisco instrumental trio, Parker Street Cinema.
Send your questions now and join Sebok Monday at 3 p.m. ET!
Buzzmaster (3:18 PM)
Joe is here!
Marco (North Dakota)
As a big fan of the site, I was wondering, what was your main reason for wanting to start PokerRoad.com?
Joe Sebok (3:19 PM)
For fun, more than anything else. It would be nice if we could make a little money off of it. But more than anything, just provide the inside view to poker. We felt we've done a good job with that.
Jared (Baltimore, MD)
How do you feel about the same delay for the November Nine with less TV coverage and hype leading up to it?
Joe Sebok (3:21 PM)
I really like the delay. It's interesting, it's new. It's hopefully going to give poker a chance to develop stories on these guys. If the poker media does a better job of getting these guys into the mainstream media, that will be better, no doubt. The only I don't like aobut the delay is that I'm not a part of it.
Jim (Tega Cay, SC)
I've read conflicting stories that Barry mentored you in poker and that he wanted you to learn on your own. Which is true? And do you think it is important to have a mentor to be successful in poker? Thanks!
Joe Sebok (3:22 PM)
Both are a little true. The answer is that when I first started, he told me to go out and get some experience to get an idea of what kind of qeustions I needed to be asking. Once I did that, he was more than willing to sit down and chat and figure out what I should be learning. Both are true. It's definitely important to have a mentor, friend to talk the game with. The mistakes that you might be making, they might be making. The whole thing with poker is to learn.
Joe, Who is your favorite sports team?
Joe Sebok (3:23 PM)
Sadly the Chicago Cubs. Although it was pretty sweet that Patrick Kane was just chatting. The Blackhawks are one of my other favorite teams.
Ryan Valentine (Long Beach, CA)
What's the best way to read a person's hand? What important questions must you ask yourself?
Joe Sebok (3:25 PM)
Good question. Difficult to answer. Really there are different factors to each player. Certain players you know their ranges by watching them for a while. Other players, you need to know what they're capable of. Reading a hand of a guy like Bernard Lee will be different than someone else, becaues they have such different styles. Then there's an art to it, with your experiences from the past and what you've learned from it. It's tough to do and takes years to do it. It's something I'm working on.
First of all, I'm a huge fan of Pokerroad. You guys do an amazing job! My question is, do you play online at all or are you strictly a live player?
Joe Sebok (3:27 PM)
A little bit online. It's gotten to the point between the tournaments and the traveling and the media that I don't have as much time any more. Yesterday I didn't have a chance to play the WCOOP main event because I had to come down here. My career has taken a little different path with the media and the fan stuff that I can't play as much as I want.
What's your favorite poker related movie?
Joe Sebok (3:27 PM)
Come on...I think everyone's favorite poker related movie is Rounders. Who's even a second place? Is there one?
Seebs, who's going to win November's WSOP Main Event?
Joe Sebok (3:28 PM)
I am picking Joe Cada. I'm riding him to the victory. Everyone loves Phil, but he's going to be dependent on a double up or two.
Alexander (stupid work)
Do you rap like Jeff Madsen?
Joe Sebok (3:29 PM)
Jeff has a skill unto his own that I can not touch, so I let him do his thing. And marvel in awe.
What do you find to be the toughest thing about being a pro poker player?
Joe Sebok (3:31 PM)
Being a pro poker player...It's a tough way to make an easy living. It comes at a price. there's a lot of stress. A lot of ups and downs. But it's a fun life too so you keep taking the good with the bad.
Jim (Fricken work)
I play online and I want to get better (I've been playing less than a year). Do you think joining a training site is a good idea
Joe Sebok (3:32 PM)
I think that the training sites are most effective when people are just in the game. It helps you to not fall into some silly mistakes that you can make a lot of the time. Also, hop on the PokerRoad.com forums and look at the Red Pro Forum, which is in essence a training site without having to pay.
Mikey (Rio Hotel)
Is it true that Gavin Smith drank the Rio out of booze?
Joe Sebok (3:33 PM)
While it's true that he could, to the best of my knowledge he has not done it......yet. But there is still the 2010 World Series.
What advice do you have for a lower limit player trying to get started/building a sufficient bankroll?
Joe Sebok (3:36 PM)
Just keep playing. Play on your level. The best advice I always give is to keep it as a hobby. Don't put too much pressure on yourself. There are so many lessons to learn. If you don't have a good mentor, you need to learn every lesson as it comes. Poker is not something that you can rush.
Do you play any other games besides NLHoldEm during the WSOP? Razz perhaps?
Joe Sebok (3:38 PM)
I don't. I play the games individually. But I'm just getting too busy, but the players who play those tournaments play those games all the time. so I just choose to focus on all hte Hold 'Em events and fulfill all the media sessions I have.
Robert (Bristol, CT)
When you were deep in the main event, did you have any hands that you wish you played differently? If so, can you describe the hands?
Joe Sebok (3:39 PM)
This sounds a little ridiculous, because I don't thikn that I did. PRobably becuase I was always short stacked. I didn't have many options. I couldn't get in and mix it up much.
Tony (Surprise, AZ)
Hey, Joe - Have you been surprised at the amount of twitter love you've received? You've become a sort of cult hero in the poker community and could be the 1st poker personality to reach 1 million followers. Has this spurt in popularity transferred over to the real world? In other words, you're walking down the street - are you being stopped more now? What are they asking?
Joe Sebok (3:41 PM)
YEs, absolutely. I'm happy. I'd like to be the cult hero of anything. I think, barring a major Sebok meltdown, I will be the first poker player to one million. Which, also shows you that the system must be flawed.
What are your grand plans for Poker Road, while it has some great content, and is often funny, it seems to lack a common vision?
Joe Sebok (3:42 PM)
I don't know what my grand plan is. Initially my grand plan was to bulid something fun and interactive and where fans could see an inside look at the world of poker. As far as business wise, I think we're still figuring it out. I think you have a point and we'll figure it out. But until then, I hope the fans are enjoying it.
Dan M (San Lorenzo)
Have you ever witnessed a Phil Ivey craps session? If so, was it entertaining?
Joe Sebok (3:43 PM)
Yes. And yes. Unfortunately, we're sworn to secrecy on missions like that. So that's all I can provide. Good luck. Be well.
What is your favorite poker related memory?
Joe Sebok (3:46 PM)
I guess if I had to pick just one, I would saying winning my first tournament at the Mirage. That was a lot of fun. I'd like to think that my biggest memory has not happened yet.
Joe Sebok (3:47 PM)
Thanks for all the questions. Check me out on the Inside Deal on ESPN.com and the Poker Edge. Go post on our forums at PokerRoad.com. Go Cubs! Go Bears!