Stop Playing Poker, Start Living It.

Andrew Kicak

It’s becoming almost as big as baseball, football, hockey, and other sporting events. Television has increased its popularity. With the Internet, it’s coming into our homes at a lightning fast rate. The rage that’s sweeping the nation is… POKER!

Although the game of poker has been around for years and played in family recreation rooms, smoky bars, casinos, even retirement homes, these days poker has become the game of choice for hundreds of thousands of people, most of who play at home.

Family game night used to mean getting out the Monopoly board and battling over Park Place and Broadway. Now, family game night is more likely to be characterized by breaking out the poker chips and battling each other for the best hands. More and more people are talking about their bad beats, their great hands, and their prowess for play. Popular on college campuses, fraternity clubs, and even retirement homes, poker has become our new game of chance, and our new game of choice.

It’s A Poker Revolution

So what has led to the rise of this game? Most likely, it has been television and the media. On any given evening, the average person can flip on the TV set and find a poker game being aired. The World Series of Poker, Celebrity Poker Showdown, and Ultimate Poker Showdown are rising in the television ratings as we tune in to see the professionals battle it out and then compare their play to our own.

Nearly every home these days has at least one computer. The Internet has become our lifeline, in ways, for information, contact with the outside world, and – yes – our portal to the world of poker beyond our kitchen table. Now ordinary people can log on and play poker with people other than our parents, kids, and friends. Many pro-players also sponsor online poker rooms now, which they’re required to play at, and this allows the Average Joe to match his poker skills with the likes of Howard Lederer and Chris Ferguson.

Chris Moneymaker

Chris Moneymaker

Perhaps the biggest rise in poker popularity – specifically online poker – stems from one man’s $40 online buy-in leading to the Cinderella story of the industry. Chris Moneymaker qualified for The World Series of Poker main event through a small buy-in satellite event at Poker Stars.

At the Series, he outlasted a field of 839 entrants – the largest in World Series of Poker history at the time. He pitted heads against some of the most well-known poker professionals in the world – and WON! His first place finish netted him $2.5 million dollars, which wasn’t bad considering it was his very FIRST live tournament.

Many people looked at Moneymaker’s win as monumental. After all, he was just an average guy. He could be anyone’s next door neighbor or co-worker, and he went up against the pros and won. Chris Moneymaker opened the door for everyday people to dream about being the next professional poker player. In fact, the 2004 World Series featured triple the number of players over the 2003 turnout. At least four players in the WSOP final table won their entry through an online card room. Like Moneymaker, 2004 WSOP winner, Greg “Fossil Man” Raymer, also won his entry on the Poker Stars website, which testifies to the fact that literally anyone can do it.

Your Journey Into Poker

There are a myriad of tips and tricks for playing the game of poker. Everyone seems to have an opinion on the best way to play the game. True, poker is a game of chance, and many would argue that there really is no secret to winning the game. However, there is a best way to play. As Kenny Rogers sang in his 1978 song “The Gambler”, you’ve got to know “when to hold ’em and when to fold ’em”.

There are many variations of the game too, but the most popular one today has to be Texas Hold ‘Em. It’s a relatively simple game, but like all poker it can change with the deal of every card. On this website I’ll show you different ways to play the game to maximize your buy-in’s online. I’ll go into detail about how to improve your profits in tournament play, as well as sharing profitable cash game tactics that you can use too.

Remember… poker is a fun pastime, but the rewards can be huge. It all depends on YOU as the player. Study, pay attention, play aggressive, adjust when you need to. But above all, just play. The more you play, the better you’ll get. They say “Rome wasn’t built in a day” and poker professionals aren’t either.

I can’t turn you into a successful player – that’s up to you – but I will try to give you some ammunition for when the cards are being dealt and it’s time to bet. Online poker can be a lot of fun and very profitable when you play smart and follow the advice of those in the know. So whether you’re playing for fun, for money, or even just for the love of the game, I hope you’ll enjoy what we’ve put together for you at SmokePoker!

See you on the tables…

Andrew Kicak

Andrew Kicak