Undoubtedly one of the biggest poker stars of all time is Patrik Antonius, who was a regular on TV shows and dominated online poker for over a decade. But lately, Antonius has largely been absent from the poker scene both online and live. So what’s the Finn been up to recently and why isn’t he playing much high stakes poker?
To answer the latter question, it seems that the biggest live games have dried out in most parts of the world. Specifically, the huge games are gone in London, Monaco and Vegas. As for internet poker, Antonius isn’t a fan of poker tracking software, notably the kind that essentially makes decisions for players in certain spots. He still plays mixed games online but believes that advanced tracking software will eventually be developed for these games too. Below you can see a lengthier look at Antonius’ recent poker comments, thanks to a PokerListings interview.
PokerListings: Why have you played so little poker lately?
Patrik Antonius: The big games I was playing in kind of dried out. In Macau the games moved more and more into private games and the game in Vegas wasn’t the same anymore, either.
Suddenly there was no more game in London and nothing in Monaco. You know, things just change in our industry. So I stepped back and cut down on poker.
Sometimes I didn’t play a single hand for months but I probably would have had there been a proper game. Then again I got to spend more time with my family and on my health and I succeeded in getting in better shape.
I used to have a lot of problems with my back, my shoulder and my hips but now I feel great. And it’s great to be back playing poker again.
PL: What happened to your online poker? We really miss the times when you and Tom Dwan were sitting there throwing hundreds of thousands of dollars around.
PA: You know, it’s a little sad, but it looks like the technology has advanced so much that it’s become a totally different game.
Nowadays players use software that gives them so much information and so much data that it has become more of a game of numbers.
I never used any of these programs. I‘ve never used technology to get an edge. I’m more of a feel player who’s living in the moment.
But the players today know what they’re doing. They are basing their play on what the software tells them to do so it feels like you’re playing against a computer these days.
If you don’t use poker software it’s not a fair game anymore. But I still like to play Mixed Games.
PL: There’s no tracking software for these games.
PA: Well, I’m sure some smart people are already working on it and that there will be programs for Stud poker or heads-up 2-7 Triple Draw.
As much as I know Limit Hold’em is now basically solved. (ed. note: well, pretty much) I actually had to quit Hold’em and PLO online.
I lost about a million straight and then I realized that I couldn’t beat the ring-games anymore and that was largely due to tracking software.
I would take my chances against any high-stakes player live but online I don’t like my chances anymore, unfortunately.