Archive for December, 2011

My friend Jerry

I first met Jerry at a poker tournament. He had checked in with a mini-trampoline. For Jerry, exercise means to keep fit. In addition Jerry rides a bike. Jerry likes to think about poker, running over past hands or studying his past opponents.

What is the highlight of Jerry’s seven year poker career? There is no hesitation in his answer at all: “My breakthrough weekend at a Casino Regina Poker Classic in which in four tournaments I took a first, second, and third and won best overall.” Indeed, Jerry is the number one money winner in the seven year history of Casino Regina Poker Classics with slightly over $100,000 in prize money. In fact, in statistics compiled by Edmonton pro Dave Klassen, Jerry is the number one money winner in Canadian poker tournament history with a total of $112,432 in prize money (won at Casino Regina, Cash Casino Calgary, and Casino Yellowhead Edmonton).

It is easy to understand why Jerry says that tournaments generally, and no-limit hold’em tournaments specifically, are his favorite form of poker. In ring games he prefers pot-limit Omaha in which he has frequently won or lost $5,000 to $10,000 in a single evening. But as Jerry says, “Nothing beats the feeling of making the final table of a big poker tournament and playing for twenty or thirty thousand.”

If there is a poker highlight there must also be a lowlight. At the 2003 World Series of Poker Jerry was the chip leader to start the final table in consecutive super satellites. Seven times he held Big Slick and failed to convert even one of them into a winner. He was very disappointed. In one of the two super-satellites he had over thirty percent of the chips in play but Big Slick did him in.

Is poker all that Jerry does? No. He professes a love of the outdoors. In keeping with a healthy lifestyle and plenty of exercise, hiking is a favorite and relaxing pursuit. His other passion is harness racing. While most poker players will place the occasional sports or horse racing wager, Jerry has gone beyond that. Not too long ago he used to own harness racing horses. He likes challenges and owning harness racing horses was a challenge.

In fact, that is precisely what Jerry loves about poker, It is a very complex game that no one can completely master. He cannot imagine what he could replace poker with. He intend to die playing poker. For him, it is the fountain of youth. He rides his exercise bike to keep his body young. He play poker to keep his mind young.

Certainly Jerry is known for his youthful demeanor and sense of fun. He is not hard to pick out of a poker crowd with his distinctive hat and gentlemanly countenance. In Casino Regina Poker Classics his side bets with Edmonton some poker players are something of legend. They frequently have more riding on their last-longer bet than they have invested in the tournament and their mutual teasing and kibitzing adds to the fun.

It should also be noted that Jerry is known for his aggressive style. It is no fun to find your seat in a tournament and discover that you have him sitting on your immediate left. There will be two things you can be sure of: Jerry is going to put you to a lot of tough decisions; and you are going to have a lot of trouble putting him on a hand. Good luck. You will need it.