Van stream naar booth - Lex Veldhuis over commentator zijn en Short Deck
Over the course of the last couple years, Lex Veldhuis has been building his reputation as one of the biggest and best streamers in the poker world. He's now starting to expand his presence even further by delving into the world of commentary, and he's taking a big step by hopping into the booth here in Jeju for the 2018 Triton Super High Roller Series, commentating alongside Randy Lew. While this isn't Lew's first experience with Triton and short deck, it is a crash course of sorts for Veldhuis, who is picking up the game quickly.
"I love the tension of high stakes poker and I just like competing a lot. So there's always an itch to play."
"I kind of feel like it's a good balance if you don't overdo it," zegt Veldhuis over zijn voorbereiding op het event. "But I think that coming in unprepared is kind of unprofessional. I think that a lot of the audience is learning. I know Randy has more experience so I thought about positioning myself in a way where I want to know the rules. I want to know enough where it triggers some kind of interesting strategy because then you're going to come up with questions right. And if I voice those questions and ask them out loud, and also to Randy on the stream, then you get like an interesting discussion going and hopefully, I will ask some of the questions that the chat is having themselves. So I think that that will create the most interesting dynamic in learning a new game."
Veldhuis had het spel nog nooit gespeeld dus ter voorbereiding keek hij naar de streams van het voorgaande event in Montenegro waarbij hij de regels van het spel leerde. Hij was meteen onder de indruk, want het herinnert hem aan Pot-Limit Omaha, een spel waar hij groot liefhebber van is. En terwijl Veldhuis zei dat het uitzenden en commentaar geven hem tegenhouden om zelf te kunnen spelen, is deze lijn van werk meer in lijn met zijn doelen op dit moment.
"I mean it even happens if I'm just watching it on Twitch or from watching YouTube video," legt hij uit. "There's always an itch. I know to feel the way it feels to play those games which is always awesome. I love the tension of high stakes poker and I just like competing a lot. So there's always an itch to play."
"People ask me a lot 'Why don't you play the event if you're there? Why don't you play?' I mean obviously, I'm not going to play a million dollar buy-in. It's not like, you know, oh let's do this on a random Tuesday or something. What's really important for me, when I think about my career as something that I'm building, is does it support what I'm doing right now? And at this moment, broadcasting supports what's in line with my goals. It supports what I want to do right now and it supports what I'm building. So it's a very easy choice for me to choose broadcasting. Because broadcasting ties in with Twitch, it ties in with my platform and everything else. But the itch is always there."
"At this moment, broadcasting supports what's in line with my goals. It supports what I want to do right now and it supports what I'm building."
En voor Veldhuis gaan de twee opties hand in hand. Hoewel het commentaarwerk heel anders is dan het streamen van zijn eigen content, bouwen ze elkaar op complementaire manieren verder op.
"I think that the biggest thing is just getting used to talking," gaat hij verder. "I've really noticed that I've gotten better at talking, picking my words, like kind of going through sentences and stuff. And of course a lot of media stuff that I've done over the past years have helped with that as well. But I mean just to illustrate, a funny comment somebody made in my Twitch channel was, 'Do you realize that English is your first language now?' I talk more English than I do Dutch because it's just nonstop talking. So that really helps. You also kind of learn what people think is interesting. You get a better gauge of humor, points of interest, that sort of thing so I think it prepares you very really well."
De verschillen liggen in het analysegedeelte voor Veldhuis. Tijdens het streamen is hij meer gericht op het analyseren van zijn eigen spel en het creëren van zijn eigen content en wanneer hij commentaar levert, staat hij in dienst van de content van iemand anders.
"Now I'm aware of my active duty to kind of find tendencies."
"I feel like I'm developing a different side of something that I'm already interested in and already building," zegt hij. "It's a potential future for me."
En voor Veldhuis werkt het commentaar ook als een leermiddel door hem in een positie te dwingen waarin hij elke hand die gespeeld wordt, moet analyseren.
"Now I'm aware of my active duty to kind of find tendencies you know," zegt Veldhuis. "So I see things that people do a lot, really spotting tendencies. So everybody really seems to just always call in early position with nine-eight suited. That's just the way people play their hands. Cool so that should become your new standard, right? A lot of people that have played this game a lot do certain things and that's a really good starting point."
Veldhuis' observaties van het spel
Daarnaast pakt Veldhuis op hoe spelers het spel het beste verstaan. Na de eerste speeldag noteerde hij de speelstijlen van Gabe Patgorski , Kenneth Kee en Chow Hing Yuang .
"I picked up that Patgorski played this a lot," zei Veldhuis. "He plays high stakes cash games, high stakes tournament short deck. So he's played this lot. So I'm going to go with what he does as a really good example of somebody that kinda plays above the rim that does really good stuff. And obviously he's very spewy sometimes and very aggressive but it could tie in to a very good style in short deck.
"I really like the way Kee's playing," gaat hij verder. "Because he played some interesting hands today but he seems to be very good at staying out of pots. I also thought Yuang was playing really well. He seems to be very good at hand reading. He seemed a little bit over it at the end of the day. But before that, he was showing some really, really good strategy. He was very sharp. He really didn't fall into a lot of traps. I think he understands the preflop game really well."
Als het gaat om strategie gaat en dingen die Veldhuis zag, ging het allemaal om preflop spelen. Hij legde uit dat er naar zijn mening veel slecht gelimpt werd en niet genoeg 3-bets.
"I think the limping is a huge part. There's one thing that I feel like people haven't really... One thing that was highlighted to me was something that I'm missing. I feel like there's kind of a big hole and people aren't really used to what they should re-raise and three-bet with. They know what they should go all in with approximately, and what they should call with kind of, but it really seems there that all the hands you could think of three-bet bluffing with people are picking to flat call with. So there is a lot of limping, a lot of calling, not much raising and three-betting yet.
"I feel like there's kind of a big hole and people aren't really used to what they should re-raise and three-bet with."
"You know, it's a tournament, it's not cash game. So if you play a really good PLO tournament game you see people limp a lot. You see people going to the flops and it turns into a flop game a lot. So that's kind of the thing I do take away from it is that you just complete a lot because you have to pay one ante. You get like seven to one right off the bat. First player gets seven to one on his hand. You have ten-eight: ten-eight can do a lot of stuff you know. So I think it's very table-dependent."
"I do think that we see a lot of too loose limps to be honest," gaat Veldhuis verder. "Queen-six, king-six, jack-six, jack-seven. I don't think you're really supposed to be calling those hands. I think it's kind of like the illusion of pot odds. 'I get good odds, so I call,' but it never works out because your hand is shit. You know? So what are you really calling for?"
Het spel met short-deck hold'em is nog steeds niet wereldwijd bekend en groeit nog steeds, en is onlangs begonnen met gestreamde pokerevenementen. Volgens Veldhuis is de beste manier om het spel te laten groeien, door het te delen met vrienden en kleinere buy-ins samen te spelen om een gevoel voor het spel te krijgen en om het goede woord te verspreiden.
"I think that people are going to try and jump on it... to be the first one to offer it so people can play somewhere."
"I think the best thing to do is to tell your friends about it," zegt hij. "If you play drinking games or you know, if you go to a bar... Me and my friends play games at the bar all the time. Actually, you know, my friends in real life, they play like 20 euro buy-in games every week at our favorite pub and they asked me one time so I kind of explained Omaha to them and we would play like 20 dollar Omaha sit and go's. That's probably the best way to do it. You look up the rules, you start playing with your friends and it's really good to learn games that way. I don't think it's offered anywhere online at this moment so that's kind of what you are going to have to stick to. Or you know, buy in for twelve and a half thousand dollars in a warm-up event."
Veldhuis zei dat het slechts een kwestie van tijd is totdat de game op grotere schaal wordt gezien, voorspellend dat er volgend jaar een Short Deck-event zal worden gehouden bij de World Series of Poker .
"I think that it's picked up really well," zei Veldhuis. "I think people like watching it. People Like playing it. I'm getting actually, especially after Montenegro Triton event, people are asking me a lot on Twitch, 'Are you going to play short deck?' I can't. I think it's really up to people there. You know there's such a competitive atmosphere out there. I think that people are going to try and jump on it to offer it, to be the first one to offer it so people can play somewhere. I mean, I think it's going to be really soon when we see somewhere live and somewhere else."
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