I played all day with Viktor in the PokerStars EPT Monte Carlo High Roller Event and got to know him pretty well as a poker player.
I have my own observations and thoughts on poker players, especially after spending table time with them, and I have to be honest here. Viktor has talent but he is really raw. He’s not a favorite in MTT events. He has a long way to go to even be near the top and have a fighting chance in MTTs. That doesn’t mean I’m saying he doesn’t have talent, he has tremendous talent but he’s going to have to learn if he continues to play MTTs and wants to do any good in them. I talked to him and tried to give him some advice but since he’s 19, he has it all worked out and doesn’t want to take any advice. That’s the beauty of youth, they know everything, I did when I was that age too.
He’s a good looking kid with a huge future but he will have to take advice on board and use it as a tool and he needs to learn other things, like perception and what others think about you. You need to be self aware in poker and be able to adjust based on other player’s perception of you. Vik plays every hand like it’s a new event, which is very refreshing, but in MTTs, and even in cash games, you have to be aware of how you are perceived at each and every stage of the game.
He made one huge over bet on the river with a bluff that seemed obvious. He ran really good by winning about five marginal all-in hands and getting A-A vs. K-K in another all-in pot.
In the final hand he had about 50 BB and got it all-in vs. K-K preflop—it seemed hard to do with his J-J but he managed it. He was notably crushed when he busted, totally gutted. The good thing is that he has the passion to win so he will make it – the poker world needs him to make it so let’s all hope he does.
My summation: ran good, has talent, but has a long, long way to go in MTTs.
Pssst…Vik, it’s a huge event, you can fold J-J to the tightest player at the table.
On ya bike son!