Bruce and Robbie welcome longtime listener and poker podcast superfan Chad McVean to the show to discuss his home game history, what he loves so much about poker podcasts, and all things poker.

We’ve also got a “reporter in the field”, our sound engineer Jeff, who’s visiting Las Vegas, reporting from “ground zero” of what the poker scene and the city in general are like in this time of limited reopening.

Robbie’s also got some home game recaps to share, and Ben Ludlow offers some hot takes on the WSOP giving out bracelets for online events.

Time Stamps

00:27 Synopsis
1:10 How Ya Runnin?
1:27 Bruce reports on ALMOST going out to play poker in Wendover with good old Gutterball, but the poker trip being scuttled at the last minute. Still not yet back playing home games, but hopefully soon with a good, trustworthy group of friends.
5:42 Last opportunity for listeners to sign up and claim one week free of Red Chip Poker’s CORE 2.0 training material by using the promo code: TOP.
7:49 Robbie experienced both the best and worst of home game sessions, first as the game’s big winner and then as the next game’s biggest loser; the latter session being the first time losing since March though…
13:40 Poker Notes Live mobile app ad
14:25 Jeff, the Top Pair Home Game Poker Podcast’s sound engineer, joins us from Las Vegas, where he reports about what the city is like as well as the poker rooms in particular.
18:30 Jeff explains how the atmosphere in the casinos is one of unfortunately diminished excitement, especially at the table games like blackjack and craps, since there are fewer people, and all separated by plexiglass dividers.
20:45 Jeff played $1/2 at the Golden Nugget which is currently playing 5-handed, but without any plexiglass at the tables. On the one hand, the games are just fine, but the problem is that sometimes a player picks up and leaves, and quickly 4- or 3-handed poker becomes untenable.
22:20 No buffets open around Las Vegas at the moment, and no shows running…. Certainly a different kind of Las Vegas experience than the one Jeff is used to.
24:42 Jeff reports on how his local home games in Salt Lake City have all stopped, and none of the regular players are playing in any other games either.
30:45 Cards in the Air: Welcoming longtime listener Chad McVean to the show
31:42 Chad tells us about where he lives and what he does for a living. An accountant, it’s easy for him to listen to podcast all days while he’s crunching numbers in front of the computer.
32:27 Chad got into poker in 2004, after watching Greg Raymer’s run in the World Series of Poker on TV in Canada. Thereafter, he started playing in home games every Friday night. He started playing a little bit online, but is very much in love with live poker. He specifically takes a couple trips out to Las Vegas each year to enjoy the city’s many poker rooms.
35:45 Chad has always been more of a cash game player, only taking the occasional shot at tournaments.
36:26 Chad’s yearly trips to Las Vegas are usually during the WSOP at some point, as well as in April/May (before the WSOP begins) and October/November. He knows which poker rooms to visit at what time of day and on what day of the week for the best and most lucrative low-stakes games.
37:54 Chad shares his favorite poker variants to play: razz and 2-7 triple draw, and why.
40:28 Chad shares how he originally came across the Top Pair Home Game Poker Podcast for the first time. He also shares how he picks which other poker podcasts to listen to. He listens on 1.5x or 2x speed and is thus able to consume loads of them each and every day. He specifically enjoys listening to podcasts that bring unique and interesting guests on for interviews.
45:32 Chad shares some of the items on his poker bucket list, including hopefully playing in the WSOP Main Event someday.
47:04 Chad usually goes on solo poker trips to Las Vegas, but sometimes his wife comes along, and she’s learned to enjoy limit poker. He also shares what his family’s general reaction is to his incredible poker passion.
51:54 Ben Ludlow’s One Outer: Taking a break from his “things he misses about the WSOP” miniseries, Ben offers some straight up talk on why he feels this year’s online version of the WSOP is missing the mark.

Chad McVean

Chad McVean

About Robbie Strazynski

Robbie founded the Cardplayer Lifestyle poker blog in 2009.

Having quite literally learned how to play poker around the kitchen table as a child, “living a Cardplayer Lifestyle” is something that he’s always aspired to. After having worked as a copywriter and marketing professional in the online gaming industry for a number of years, Robbie transitioned to become self-employed in the poker media industry in March 2017.

Robbie translated Pulling The Trigger: The Autobiography of Poker Pro Eli Elezra, from Hebrew into English. He is also the co-host of Top Pair Home Game Poker Podcast and creator of the Poker Notes Live mobile app.

Robbie received the 2018 Global Poker Award for Charitable Initiative of the Year.

Connect with Robbie on Twitter @cardplayerlife, or via email: [email protected]