GPI/THM Q+A: Chris Moorman Answers Your Questions

Recent WPT L.A. Poker Classic Champion and online poker legend Chris Moorman answers your questions!

Chat with the Champ

How do you manage to keep your motivation to put in the volume you do after so many big scores? Have you ever thought about retirement, or semi-retirement? (Matt101)

I simply enjoy playing the game. It isn’t something where I feel like I am playing to make money, I just want to play and win. One day if/when I don’t have the same love for the game I will focus on something else.

What’s the biggest or most memorable bluff you’ve ever run live? (DropTheHammer)

It wasn’t the biggest but it is definitely the most memorable because it was the most recent and so crucial to my tournament life. With 8 players left in the LAPC Main I re-raised Adam Freidman from the big blind with A-2 off.  He called and I proceded to bet all 3 streets on KQ2310 for a large majority of my stack. He tanked on the river for close to 10 minutes, consistently trying to engage me but he couldn’t get any read off me and ended up folding after the clock was called on him. This hand really gave me the momentum to go on and win the whole tournament. I wouldn’t normally go for this play but we had played a lot over the last two days and I hadn’t three bet him once pre-flop or shown the propensity to make such a big move without having it.

Do you have any bankroll management tips for people starting out today? Do you still adhere to a bankroll management strategy? (Frodge)

I don’t have any set bankroll management rules in terms of what percentage the buy in should be of your overall poker roll but I don’t have a problem missing a poker tournament if I feel it is outside of my bankroll, for example the 1 drop! I would say just to be smart and only take shots when it is a really good spot.

Do you use a HUD? What do you think is the optimal number of tables for you to play at once? (ashmadden)

I don’t currently use one, although I have in the past. I feel like a HUD is essential when playing cash games but not as much for tournaments. Just over a year ago I was going through a bit of a downswing online so I decided to start using a HUD but I felt like I was making too many crucial decisions based on the HUD and it wasn’t really working out for me. I feel like the optimal number of tables over the past few years has gone down for everyone as the standard of play of the average player has improved. Now I don’t like to play more than 14 tables at once where as previously I would happily play over 20.

One Shining Moment

What single moment made you think “this is what I want to do with my life”? Who did you look up to when learning to play poker? (PokerWolf1)

I was at University and one summer I ended up playing poker instead of getting a summer job. Things went very well for me and I really started to realize my potential and took the game more seriously.  Shortly after that I joined Cardrunners training site and started watching training videos. I watched Taylor Caby, Cole South and Brian Townsend and these guys were playing a different game to me. I wanted to emulate them I took in every word they said.

Do you balance your time spent playing poker and time spent doing everything else in your life or is this something that you’re still hoping to get around to at some point? (Chris_Austin)

I am getting better at having balance although it is still something I am looking to improve. I find it hard to completely remove myself from the game when I’m not playing. I feel like I have made great strides in this area in the past couple of years, though. Previously I would travel to tournaments and never see more than the inside of the casino, now I am visiting these places and learning about the culture and getting out there, seeing the sites.

If you could ask Phil Ivey one question and he had to answer truthfully, what would it be? (Darrensprengers)

How many people are on Team Ivey?

How have you adapted to changes to online poker over the past 8-10 years? (curnow)

Online poker changes so fast. When I first started playing tournaments I had the reputation of being a tight player. Obviously my game quickly evolved and my reputation flipped at which point I had to adjust the other way. To be successful at online poker you have to be constantly working on your game and be aware of your image.

High Stakes

What do you consider your biggest mistake/leak when staking? (Pizzicato)

Honestly? I was probably too nice to begin with. I didn’t look it as a business really, and that is absolutely what you have to do to be successful with staking. I should have been more ruthless and been more selective with what tournaments I let people play. I don’t regret staking, but I have no interest in ever doing it again.

Do you play every day? (Jack Starr)

When I first started out I would play 6-7 days a week, I couldn’t get enough. I definitely didn’t have balance and poker took over a lot of my life. Within the last couple of years a lot has changed for me and I take breaks. I average playing now about 4-5 days a week.

When you were first starting out, did you strictly play tournament poker or did you also play cash games? Who would you say are your three toughest opponents online? (JohnnySeaBet)

When I first started I was predominantly a cash game player and would play a few tournaments on the side. My poker tracker broke and whilst waiting to fix it I decided to play more tournaments, as I didn’t want to play cash games without a HUD. I really enjoyed the tournaments, did well, and never looked back. There are a ton of great players out there, but none that I really fear to see at my table.

Words of Wisdom

I often struggle with boredom, due to tendency to go on auto-pilot when multi-tabling online after a few hours. With the sheer volume that you put in, how do you keep your brain stimulated for so long in order to maintain a high level of play? (flopsy/Louis)

I am stimulated by playing poker. I am constantly thinking about every hand and different lines I could take or bet sizes I could use. With the volume of tables I play there isn’t really a chance to get bored. Auto-pilot is something you should try to avoid as much as possible.

How/what do you eat when you’re playing, cos your body clock must be up the wall most of the time?  (TheBlueBoy)

Lately I have been spending most of my time in North America as I like that time schedule much better than when in Europe. I am fortunate to eat great as I live and travel with my girlfriend and she cooks for us most of the time.

What kind of indicators are you looking for when deciding when to change gears? (Ariel)

On bubbles such as the money bubble or final table bubble I am looking to play more hands and play them more aggressively. Also when the table gets short-handed I will look to take advantage by putting more pressure on my opponents because they are less likely to have a hand strong enough to fight back with.

Any suggestions for someone wanting to make the jump from amateur to pro? (Chad)

I don’t know if that is something you decide more than it just happens really. I would say keep playing and keep working on your game. Stay patient and just don’t be in a rush to get to the top.

We thank Chris for taking time to answer your questions and wish him nothing but the best on the felt – live and online … oh, and congratulations on the BIG win at the LAPC!

Be sure to visit Chris’ site at You can follow Chris on Twitter: @Moorman1.