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HokieGreg's Heads Up Poker Player Profile
Welcome to the HokieGreg page. Here you can learn all about HokieGreg's poker playing career as a HUSNG instructor, blogger, videomaker, coach and poker site professional.
Started Playing HUSNGs: 2006
Poker Handle: HokieGreg HU (PokerStars) HokieGreg (Merge/Lock)
Birth Year: 1983
Went Broke on the Way Up: Yes
Secrets to Success: Understanding variance
HokieGreg's Strengths: Mental game, confidence
HokieGreg's Weaknesses: Offline money management, lack of variety in poker games
HokieGreg began playing poker in 2002, participating in some low stakes home games with friends. "I was pretty obsessed with poker from the very first time I played. The thought of winning $100 in just a few hours playing a card game was pretty sexy to me and obviously I thought I could have a 100% winrate if I played well!," HokieGreg says, with a laugh.
After two years of home games, HokieGreg made his first deposit of $25 to Ultimate Bet. "I spent the next 2-3 years being a marginal winner/degenerate in low stakes games, occasionally trying to run my winnings up in Party Poker blackjack. You can guess how that ended up," says HokieGreg.
In 2006, a random internet search led HokieGreg to the twoplustwo forums. "I read lots of articles, lurked the forums for about a year and I really started to get an idea of what it took to be a winning player in poker over the long term." He continues, "I started taking poker seriously, no more blackjack, sports betting or chasing losses at higher stakes. Hard work, self awareness and discipline was what I focused on and I started playing 6 max 10NL on PokerStars. I would buyin for the minimum and had a $50 bankroll. I built that into a $600 bankroll before I took shots at 25NL."
HokieGreg's bankroll would peak at about $1500 this time, before a fight with a girlfriend put him in a poor emotional state. "I tilted off my entire roll in one night and 'quit' poker," says Hokie. "I emphasize quit because I probably quit poker 20 times over the first few years, but who hasn't?"
(above) Prop Betting - HokieGreg Flips For $1,000 Outside a Restaurant
In February 2007 HokieGreg took a month off of poker, broke up with his girlfriend and moved back in with his parents. He was enrolled in school full time and had a low paying part time job. "Initially I really did intend to quit poker completely, as I was fed up with my self-defeating habits," he says. "After some thought, I realized that over those 125,000 hands of 10-25NL I had proven to myself that with discipline, hard work and consistency, poker could be a form of investing, not just gambling."
HUSNGs From The Bottom Up
HokieGreg would soon redeposit $50 on PokerStars to start playing the $5 buyin regular speed HUSNGs and building up a bankroll. "I knew these were really soft at the low stakes and were probably a game I had a decent edge in already," says HokieGreg. "I also liked being able to play 45-60 minute sessions and taking a lot of breaks," he says. "I really sucked at playing much longer than that at the time," he adds.
HokieGreg played well and ran well. With about a 20% ROI over his first few hundred low stakes heads up sngs, he found himself at the $22 level with a $400 bankroll and a lot of confidence. "I started reading the heads up sng forum, finally opening a 2p2 account to post instead of just reading. I continued to win at this time and decide I needed to keep motivating myself for continues success and accountability," he says.
HokieGreg started a poker blog in April of 2007. "I was having success at the $33 buyin level on PokerStars, and that's really when I knew that I could make enough money to justify poker being my primary source of income long term," says HokieGreg. "I was making something like $2,500 per month at the $33s, but I got complacent with that amount of income and stuck at that buyin level overrolled for way too long." He met heads up forum posters PrimordialAA, ChicagoRy and Cwar, among others and started discussing strategy with these players on a daily basis. "We all kept blogs following our progress, establishing a network of like minded, motivated poker players. This was really helpful in my progress as a heads up sit and go player," he says.
(above) Lifetime Graph - HokieGreg's $200 Level Heads Up SNG Graph
From 2008 to 2011 HokieGreg transformed himself into a very successful heads up sng professional, with over $300,000 in profit in heads up games. HokieGreg still credits discipline and motivation as his keys to success, evident in his highly touted article Playing Poker For A Living; It's A Marathon, Not A Sprint. In the fall of 2011, HokieGreg also became the lead instructor of FastTrack, a high level private coaching forum founded by Mersenneary.
"Since opening my blog in 2007, I've made it further in poker than I ever dreamed of," says HokieGreg. "I never really expected to play higher than the $220 level, but I've now played up to the $5,000 level. All of my success has come from those early lessons I learned in 6-max cash - if you can avoid the multitude of self-defeating traps in poker and you combine that with hard work, self analysis, humility and discipline, it is actually quite realistic to make a legitimate career out of this game," he says.
HokieGreg became a Lock Poker Elite Pro after Black Friday in 2011 and as of October he was the largest heads up sng winner on the entire Merge Network.
(above) Variance - Professionals Like HokieGreg Take 200 Buyin EV Swings in Stride
In February 2009, HokieGreg had two guest videos debut on HUSNG.com and in November of 2009 he began producing videos regularly. His "Hit and Running the Legends" series has been popular, featuring a video against Jovial Gent and two videos against Isildur.
In an October 2010 video, HokieGreg gives premium HUSNG members a detailed look at what his coaching sessions are like.
Accountability and Publicity
A chief component to HokieGreg's success is holding himself accountable. Over the years he has done just that in one form that excites many heads up sng players; by being open to the public about his thoughts and mindset in poker. In addition to his poker blog, motivational article and videomaking, HokieGreg also regularly updates his twitter account, posts on 2p2, HUSNG.com and FastTrack forums and also interacts with members on HUSNG.com through video comments and poker articles like HokieGreg Answers Your Questions. The sum total is that HokieGreg remains one of the most publicly accessible and valuable contributors in the public domain of the HUSNG online community.