Saturday, November 7, 2009

The Weekend Trader - The Ultimate Game

I have been both humbled and honored in recent days as the result of continued emails in support of recent blogging efforts, including a flood thanking me for Thursday's tank transcript (which I've added to the key post menu at the lower left) while others made some rather startling comparisons to a few prominent poker players that have greatly humbled this trader.

So given the current spotlight on the 2009 World Series of Poker final table which takes place this weekend, I thought I'd have some fun and provide my own perspective to some of the comparisons -- while adding a few of my own -- which in turn may help me further refine my goals for 2010 and beyond.

Howard Lederer "The Poker Professor" - I'll start off with one that may actually be the best comparison, as after proving his success over the years, Howard has had to often choose between his playing and non-playing efforts. In addition to continuing to play, he's often seen as a TV analyst and is one of the owners and founders of Full Tilt Poker. And while I wasn't obese like "Bubba" as he had to undergo gastric bypass surgery to lose weight, I suppose there's at least a tiny similarity as I worked hard over the last few months to shed 25 pounds.

Mike Sexton "The Ambassador of Poker" - Mike is perhaps best known as the announcer for the World Poker Tour, yet remains an active and successful player even at the age of 62. Today, Mike will become the 38th person to be inducted in the Poker Hall of Fame, after having earned more than $3.7 Million in career poker winnings. Mike also does a great deal of charity work, and I while I doubt I should be even mentioned in the same breath as Mike, I suppose there are at least a few similarities in terms of his amount of winnings and his blend of playing & non-playing contributions.

Jeff & Barry Shulman - The Shulmans are both key principles of Card Player Magazine, while also continuing to be successful at the table. Jeff is of course one of the 2009 Final Table "November Nine" players who will square off this weekend, while Barry recently won the WSOP Europe Title by defeating 333 other players.

Barry recently commented that he "... started to focus more on my business at Card Player. Since then, I have not been playing as hard. Now, I'm back on the winning trail and feeling very good about it." Been there done that.

Daniel Negreanu "Kid Poker" - In losing to Barry as a result of a two-outer on the river (he could only lose to one of two cards) at the WSOPE, Daniel twittered "Those two key hands will make you hate poker". And while I'm no "kid" anymore, his recent comment sounds like how I feel after a bat beat or poor day of play. Like the other players mentioned, Daniel also has various business interests in the poker community, and can frequently be found commenting on many poker TV sessions.

Phil Helmuth "Poker Brat" - Believe it or not, one person a few months ago compared my ego to that of the brat himself. Hopefully, the only similarity here is that we both appeared in a 2003 side-by-side interview with TradingMarkets. In my opinion, while Phil is one of the most gifted players in the world, he's downright arrogant and degrading to others who haven't yet reached his level of success. If I EVER sound like that, please slap me.

Chris Moneymaker - And yes, a few have compared me to Chris who was a "one-hit wonder" in winning the 2003 WSOP main event, who did little before then and essentially nothing afterward. Those comparisons are likely from those who didn't know me prior to that first blog post in July 2008, or who don't know the details of this year's strong P&L.

btw, if you're ever bored, go to the site and do a search for Don Miller. In doing so, you'll find hundreds of posts from when I used to do TM's feature daily commentary. Here's one small sample. (And yes, I had as intense feelings then as I do now.)


So what does any of this have to do with my planning for 2010?

Well, I'm continuing to noodle over the flood of recommendations from my October 18 post, and have not yet charted my course.

Part of me wishes I could continue the intense Jellie-type trader training, which wildly surpassed my expectations in terms of participant feedback, industry support, and results. For I know full well that such a non-stop full-immersion experience over a month's time is absolutely the best way to learn this business, whether it be with me or some other successful trader. And many, including a few Jellie brokers, have asked me to continue providing the service.

Yet as I've mentioned in recent posts, the energy required to do so -- and in the right way -- is simply intense, and I'm only one person. And in case you ever wondered, every single pixel on this blog, the educational site, and every aspect of the Jellie Webinars and daily tank training, are 100% my own effort. I have zero staff or outside help, including any administrative or tech support. It's truly a one-person effort.

Plus, as much as I enjoy teaching, I simply love trading -- and one can't do both well simultaneously. And as I mentioned the other day, my income drops when I teach.

So my current plan -- STC as we say in the tank (Subject to Change) -- is to continue to provide trader education by keeping the Jellie Study Session videos available at the discounted price, which will allow me the time and focus during the trading day to take my personal trading to an even higher level. And while I may do an occasional live Jellie effort in the future, it will likely be on a very occasional basis.

I suppose like Lederer, Sexton, et al, the last decade of work and outpouring of support have provided me options. And I still believe -- despite the success of the Jellie effort -- that we can do even more good in this industry whose surface we have still barely scratched.

i.e. Has anyone ever had the guts to trade live on TV every day for the whole world to see???

Including pocket cams of trading "hole cards"???

Talk about raising the bar another notch in terms of transparency.

erhaps that would be the ultimate game.

Don't put it past me.