Does Studying Really Help Your Game? (Just Ask Tony...)

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Making a commitment to study poker seems silly to some people.

In fact, I am sure you’ve often heard it from friends, co-workers, and family members: “Poker is gambling and at the end of the day, you need to be lucky to win at gambling”.

The next time you hear this all too familiar refrain, show them to this tweet from LearnWPT Instructor Tony Dunst...


There’s no denying Tony’s resume as a world-class player. His achievements include a WPT title and WSOP bracelet, and he’s certainly seen just about every approach to success in poker during his 15 years in the game.

So, you should take this world-class player’s example and start your study plan today with a $5 first month membership to LearnWPT.com.

To give you some extra motivation and show you how Tony made 2019 one of his best years ever as a Pro, you'll get exclusive access to Tony’s Strategy Episodes (21 BONUS videos!) as part of your $5 First Month Membership to LearnWPT.com.

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These videos are normally only available to Silver, Gold, and Platinum Members so this offer will only be available until March 31, 2020.

Join today and get started on proving all the doubters wrong and get on a path to constant improvement (like Tony did!).


What Else Do You Get with a $5 First Month Membership?

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  • 16 Strategy Episodes selected by LearnWPT Lead Instructor Nick Binger introducing game-changing concepts
  • The ability to Train and Play Hands using the WPT GTO Trainer for instant feedback on YOUR leaks

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It'll be the best $5 investment you can make to get on the road to poker success!


Study hard and play well,
-LearnWPT



K♦8♦ on the River, what do you do here?

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DECISION POINT:
In a Tournament where blinds are 500/1,000 it folds to you in the Cutoff. You minraise with K♦8♦ to 2,000 and it folds to Big Blind who calls. Big Blind checks the 2♠K♣7♠ flop, you continuation bet, and Villain calls. The 9♠ turn is checked. The K♥ comes on the river giving you trips and BB check-raises. Action is on you, what do you do here?

PRO ANSWER: In a multi-table tournament at 500/1,000 blinds we are dealt K8s in the Cutoff seat. It folds around to us and we make a standard raise for this point in the tournament to 2,000 and the Big Blind is the only caller. Even though we only raised to the minimum amount preflop, often in the mid/late stages of tournaments this small of a raise size is more than enough to put our opponents to meaningful decisions and skew the risk vs reward heavily in our favor, allowing us to steal more often and play more hands.

The flop is 2sKc7s and the Big Blind checks to us. This is a relatively dry flop and we have a massive range advantage in this spot as the preflop raiser. Given both of these factors we should continuation bet and favor a smaller bet size. We choose to make it 2,000 and our opponent calls.

The turn is the 9s. This is actually a close decision for us. Our opponent could reasonably have called on the flop with a flush draw, but they could also have any pair as well as ace high. Many of those are hands that we beat that will fold if we bet again, making it tough for us to get additional value out of our hand.

On the other hand we don’t want our opponent to get a free card with any of the random hands containing only 1 they could have in their range. If the pot were much bigger in relation to our stacks, we could make a better case that equity denial is more important than extracting some additional value in this spot. We decide to check in order to induce some bluffs from our opponent on the river as well as get some value out of some 2x/7x hands (or hands like 55 or ace high) on the river.

Continued below...

The river is the Kh and our opponent checks to us. Given the action so far it is difficult to put our opponent on a big hand. We have to figure most flushes or Kx hands would bet this river given the action thus far, so we’re really targeting 7x/2x/55/Ax type hands if we decide to bet. Given those target hands are all relatively weak, a smaller bet sizing seems reasonable. We elect to go with 2,000 which may be a little too small as most players who will call 2,000 here will likely call a bet as large as like 3,000-3,500 as well. Our opponent raises to 5,000.

This is one of those spots where game theory would say to call 100% of the time with our hand. We only need to have the best hand 16% of the time and our line in this spot somewhat caps our hand range, making it harder for us to have a strong hand.

If our opponent believes we have a capped range, they should be bluffing some percentage of the time which makes this a fairly trivial call. In the real world we will run into opponents who simply never check-raise bluff the river and we are ahead here very close to 0% of the time.

The price we are getting to make this call is simply too good given the strength of our hand. If we had an opponent specific read then we could perhaps make an exploitative lay-down here. Absent that information we are simply too strong to fold.

Calling is the best play.

How would you play it?
Share your answer in the comments below!


Ready For Better Tournament Results?

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LearnWPT Tournament Strategy Workshops are for poker players who know the fundamentals of tournament strategy and are ready to take their game from good to great.

Attend a Live Workshop and learn...

  • Strategies to take you from a player who "min-cashes" to one who dominates the final table
  • What it takes to "close the deal" in Tournaments including final tables, short-handed play, heads up play, and deal-making
  • How to thrive in today’s competitive tournaments

Start improving your results with the help of LearnWPT's world-class teachers and Pros who boast over 17 Million in combined tournament winnings!


Have a question about LearnWPT?
Contact us at [email protected] or (888)600-5593 and we’ll be happy to help!


LearnWPT Student Bryant Getting Results...

LearnWPT Platinum Member and Live Workshop Student Bryant Morrison has been putting in the work and seeing big results at the poker tables!

Bryant recently conquered a field of 322 players to win his first WSOP Circuit Ring in the Seniors Event at the Choctaw Durant stop.

The $250 buy-in tournament generated a $64,400 prize-pool and as victor, Bryant was awarded $13,948 and a coveted World Series of Poker gold Ring.

We asked Bryant about his recent win, how LearnWPT has helped his game, and more…

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LearnWPT: Do you play many live tournaments? Why did you pick this specific event to play?

Bryant: I only play live tournaments but I practice at LearnWPT.com using the GTO trainer more and more now. I do not play cash games to speak of unless I am waiting for a tournament to start.

I chose the Choctaw event because it fit my schedule during the Christmas break. I play WSOP in the summer, again on break, and this circuit event was close enough to drive to.

LearnWPT: You’ve attended two LearnWPT Live Workshops. How would you say these live events have helped your game?

Bryant: Both workshops added to my understanding of the game on a theoretical level. I constantly refer to handouts even now as I develop a playing strategy for different situations. Being able to ask questions and listen to other player's questions greatly increased my knowledge of the game. The best time for learning at the second workshop was the laboratory work where we all played our hands openly with the instructors advising and critiquing our play. That one day is worth all the money in [my] opinion.

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The greatest take away from both workshops was the fact that they made me reconsider what my game was doing. Then, after working at home to unscramble my brain, my game would improve to a better understanding of certain aspects of the game that I was repeatedly seeing at the tables.

LearnWPT: How often do you use LearnWPT.com to improve your game? What specific features do you like about the online training site?

Bryant: About 6 weeks before I go to a tournament setting I begin to use LearnWPT.com extensively, every day if possible. I am not a professional so I have to plan when I can play and that includes when I can practice as well. Right now I only play at 2 times a year: WSOP summer and any circuit events during Christmas break. I might add Spring Break this year to that schedule since there are now more WSOP circuit events planned.

I have created my own constantly updated index of all the episodes so that I can drill into any specific element of poker. Using this index I can review cbetting, 3rd bullets, stack to pot ratios, speculative calling, exceptions to these rules, and many other situations that might confuse me at the table. Having these episodes available 24/7 at my beck and call has proved tremendously useful to keeping my play sharp. If I had to learn this at the tables through actual play I would never be where I am now.

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This most useful element of the website has been the addition of the GTO trainer. I did not enjoy it at first, constantly being graded down with losing points for errors, until I understood the tool’s usefulness. I am not supposed to win; I am supposed to develop a pattern of play that minimizes my losses in each different scenario.

Then, later at the tables, when I recognize the same situation, I will know the proper move based on stack size, position, stack to pot ratio, and the other factors taught at the workshops. Then it is up to me to decide whether it is the proper moment to DEVIATE from perfect play to maximize my exploitation of the situation. It is at that moment in the tournament that the training pays off: you realize your opponent is just not that good after all. Viola! The chips slide your way. Next hand please!

The GTO trainer never makes a mistake so you know you are learning the proper action EVERY TIME. Build knowledge off of that and table play becomes much more readable.

LearnWPT: Can you name a few specific skills or techniques from the LearnWPT game plan that helped you win this WSOP ring? Can you talk about how or why they helped?

Bryant: One of the basic skills reinforced at LearnWPT.com and the workshops is thinking of stack size as BBs and adjusting your play accordingly. Knowing where you are in the tournament helps make decisions so much easier. If it is time to shove all in with A2o (my winning hand) then make the play.

In my specific winning hand my opponent had 8 bbs left... I knew he had to be pushing ALL IN with wide open ranges so when I had the A and was only risking a few more bbs to end the tourney my second card was less relevant to me. A in the window and the ring was mine.

Listen to what Bryant had to say back in 2018 during his first LearnWPT Live Workshop...

I would never have thought like that before LearnWPT. My cards would have been the most important item in my equation. Instead, looking at the stack sizes, position, time, stack to pot ratio, reads, and the reward my call with a weak A was practically automatic. Move the clock back and his stack is larger proportionately so the call would be less likely but with only those few bbs left it was an opportunity I could not pass up. I doubt I would ever have thought about poker like this without training at LearnWPT.com.

LearnWPT: $13,948 for a $250 buy-in is an impressive return on investment. Do you have any plans for future tournaments? Where will we see you next?

Bryant: Future tournaments will be WSOP summer events that fit my schedule. The money is not the motivation; the competition is. $1000 buy-in at WSOP returns hundreds of thousands and the higher events, with higher skill levels, return more. The math is the same for ROI but the “life changing” amounts are not going to appear for me. I am already settled into the retirement life style, just not completely yet.

Look for me at WSOP in the summer events but hopefully you won’t recognize me and future I am just an old timer, the OMC type, who is just playing his cards as he gets them. ABC with a little luck, that’s what I want you to see when you see me. Meanwhile, back at LearnWPT.com I will have put in multiple hour days on the trainer, updated my index, reviewed and drilled certain elements, attended another workshop (probably, based on schedule), and hopefully added a few more tools to my war chest.

LearnWPT: Do you have any advice for players trying to learn and improve their No-Limit Hold’em game?

Bryant: The key to improving is to actually use the tools you have. Playing is one way but it is slow, expensive, and time consuming. The GTO trainer is on all the time and is free with unlimited use when you buy into the monthly program. You can even but in, practice, play, resign and come back later when you plan on playing your next tournament with no penalty. Thus, you can plan your own time instead of having the tournament schedules run your life. Your wife and family will appreciate your presence in the “off” seasons.

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While I also suggest a workshop they are expensive and will “break your game” until you recollect your thoughts and adjust to what the new information gives you. Well worth the time and money but be prepared to have at least a week off after the workshop to work the material into your game before you play. Now I may be slow and perhaps you can adjust faster than this poor old man but you do need some time to change your game.

LearnWPT: Aside from poker, what else do you do for fun?

Bryant: Ahhh… the back-story, personal part of this interview. As a window into my life let me summarize by saying that in my long life I have not been idle. I have practiced law, taught history (still doing this one), piloted my own aircrafts with a multi-engine instrument commercial license, instructed accelerated freefall skydiving with over 1,000 jumps, scuba dived to a depth of 350 feet on a salvage attempt, sailed the Caribbean as a bareboat charter captain, raced downhill slalom (very briefly), written 6 books (4 published), traded commodities, played golf down to a 12 handicap, raised 2 children to be better than me, kept a wife 12 years younger than me happy for the past 30 years, and besides just playing poker I now find pleasure in studying and practicing the game. And I’m not done yet!

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As an educator, Bryant understands the importance of study, the effort needed to improve your game, and mental fortitude to be successful in poker and life.

Bryant is a true student of the game and we couldn’t be more proud of his accomplishment. We can't wait to see what is in store next for Bryant.

Have a success you’d like to share? Let us know by emailing the LearnWPT Team at [email protected].


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When we created LearnWPT.com our goal was to provide a place that empowers players to ask questions, help get them focused, and provide the tools for a solid game-plan to bring to the table every time they sit down.

Some of the ways we accomplish this is by:

  • Empowering Students to train, practice, and play on the WPT GTO Trainer to get real EV loss of their play to help find leaks fast
  • Hosting 2-Day and 3-Day Live Workshops for Students to learn and interact with the LearnWPT Instructors in person
  • Teaching and presenting examples of proven, winning concepts through our Strategy Episodes (instructional videos)
  • Providing a place where Members can send questions to receive answers and guidance with the Ask a Pro Feature and Community Forums


Not a Member?
Click below to join (just $5 your first month!) and start improving your game today:

LearnWPT 2019 Year in Review

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Our goal for 2019 was to create new ways to help LearnWPT Members improve their poker game.

We accomplished that goal by adding new game-elevating features, advanced content, additional ways to interact more with our Pros, and more. All with the help of feedback from YOU.

Here’s a recap of the best from 2019:

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Nick Binger and the Development Team spent most of 2019 creating the The WPT GTO Trainer where Members can now practice and learn Game Theory Optimal Strategies used by the world's greatest players by simply playing hands of poker.

The Community Forums were created in 2019 for Students to join in and discuss all things poker with Nick, Eric, LuckyChewy, and fellow Members.

We've also made it much easier to improve your game with our new Membership Tiers. Now you can choose the Membership to best fit your budget, schedule, and stage in your development

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  • Viewed 99 New Strategy Videos
  • Reviewed 100 New Poker Hands
  • Voted 224,335 times to Fold, Call, Check, or Raise
  • Played 100+ different WPT GTO Training Packs using over 1 Billion Solved Hands
  • Received 1100+ Answers to Ask a Pro Questions
  • Submitted 770+ HIT Hands for Analysis
  • Attended 315 Minutes of Webinars
  • Downloaded 12 New Studying Tools

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LearnWPT Member Sue bested a field of 1,713 to win her 1st WSOP Bracelet (and over $120K).

The World Poker Tour interviewed and featured LearnWPT Students Scott & Lisa in an article highlighting their phenomenal summer.

LearnWPT Instructors Tony Dunst and Andrew "LuckyChewy" Lichtenberger had huge 2nd place wins in 2019...

Tony added $250K to his bankroll in the Baccarat Crystal World Poker Tour Tournament of Champions and Chewy banked $917K in the WSOP 50K High Roller!

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Most Watched Episodes

Most Voted Poker Hands

Most Memorable Moments

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We hosted Live Workshops in Los Angeles, Vegas, and Atlantic City which included:

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To all of our current, former, and future Members - THANK YOU for a great year and for being a part of LearnWPT!

The LearnWPT Development Team is hard at work on several Enhanced Features and we look forward to helping your game grow in 2020.

We'll see you online,
- LearnWPT

Your 2020 Poker Resolution Starter Guide

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It’s that time again to turn the page and look ahead to a brand-new year full of exciting possibilities!

How are you planning on making your poker game better in 2020?

If you want to start 2020 on the path to improvement, I recommend following this list of Poker Resolutions:

  1. Make sure your Preflop Raises are sized properly to thin the field to just one or two opponents.

  2. Begin using Board Texture to guide postflop decisions.


I can’t stress enough how critical it is to apply these two concepts before you start trying to make any other changes to your poker game.

These two ideas are so important that we want all of our Students to have watched them before they even join LearnWPT (which is why we give them to you for free)!

Now, if you're ready to take the next step and you already have those two concepts down, I'd recommend you add these Resolutions:

  1. Assign Ranges based on your opponent's seat Position:

    a) study what hands to play preflop when you are the first person to put money into the pot
    b) stay consistent with your raise-sizing
    c) put each player in the hand on a range preflop and then try to narrow it as the action continues

  2. Think about and set Poker Goals by:

    a) reflecting on your past goals and results
    b) setting process and results oriented goals
    c) understanding "why" poker is important to YOU

  3. Practice and Evaluate play to improve faster by:

    a) writing down key details for hands you have trouble with
    b) playing 25 hands a day on the WPT GTO Trainer
    c) setting up a feedback loop using the Hand Input Tool to record and share hands you've played for analysis from LearnWPT Pros

If you've already made all of these "starter" resolutions part of your game, then a Membership with LearnWPT will be the easiest and fastest way to build a strong and dynamic game plan for winning No-Limit Texas Hold'em play.

If you want to jump-start your Tournament game, then a LearnWPT Strategy Workshop is for you! Live Training Workshops are the fastest, most comprehensive, and fun way to radically change the way you play poker.

Here's to making winning decisions in 2020!
-Nick Binger


So what are YOUR Poker Resolutions?

Post your answers in the comments below because it helps to write your resolutions down... and you may help another player realize what they need to be focusing on!

LearnWPT Members Team Roberts Roll Up Big Finishes!

LearnWPT Students Scott and Lisa Roberts have been on a tear at the poker tables in recent months adding on to their impressive combined $125,000 in tournament winnings.

The World Poker Tour recently interviewed and featured Team Roberts in an article highlighting their phenomenal summer.

Click here or read more about Scott and Lisa's poker journey below


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By Sean Chaffin

The couple that plays together, stays together. At least that’s the case for Scott and Lisa Roberts. This poker-playing pair have been married 37 years and is affectionately known as Team Roberts. The recreational players from Atlanta, Georgia, have been on a tear at the poker tables in recent months – and credit much of their success to strategies and techniques they’ve learned attending several LearnWPT events.

The Roberts have apparently been good students. Scott, 62, works as a real estate investor and has more than $89,000 in live tournament winnings. Lisa, 63, is a retired personal trainer and has $35,000 in tournament winnings.

For Scott and Lisa, working with LearnWPT has definitely transferred to the tables. They now hope to keep that mojo going.

Poker Power Couple

It was an especially nice September for Team Roberts at the WSOP Circuit stop at Seminole Coconut Creek in Florida where Scott won a $400 event for $6,994. Lisa notched a runner-up finish in a $250 seniors event for $5,284 and took sixth in a $600 turbo for $2,100.

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“It was very frustrating coming in second,” she says laughing. “But I was very happy.”

At the turbo final table, Lisa was also joined by Scott and he took runner-up for $8,096. He followed up the runner-up finish with yet another second-place finish in a $250 DeepStack event for $4,486.

In total, Scott finished with four cashes for $20,182 and was named the player of the series. His background as a LearnWPT student certainly helped, he says, and everything seemed to come together.

“It was one of those times where I was using moves to make moves and running well too,” he says. “When those two go together you can be unstoppable. It was just a really good trip.”

The couple, who have two grown children and a grandchild on the way, have family in the area and spent some time with them during the trip. Scott didn’t even realize he was in contention to be casino champion.

“We didn’t play a lot of the events just because we were seeing family,” he says. “We skipped several events, but if I had known I was in contention I definitely would have played a few more.”

Scott began playing poker in 2005 with some friends and online. He cashed in smaller tournaments and then won a $235 event in Las Vegas in 2017 for $20,108 followed by another big win a year later for $11,348.

Lisa wasn’t into the game like her husband however, and it took her a while to appreciate poker.

“I’d sit behind him when I was done playing Blackjack after losing money,” she says. “The TV was always on the poker channel [the WPT included], and I wasn’t really watching him play, but I started knowing all the players because of all the little vignettes they ran about them. Scott would come over while he was playing online and say, ‘Look I have such and such hand. What do you think the nuts would be right now?’”

Lisa would answer and often would be correct. She didn’t have much interest in the game but seemed to be picking it up. To her, the game just looked boring with the people looking “all serious and unfriendly.”

One night at a casino, Lisa planned to play Blackjack but her husband convinced her to take a seat at the tables. That first night she played Limit Hold’em holding a card with the ranking of hands.

“I won four hands in a row at one point,” she says. “I couldn’t even stack them fast enough because I didn’t know how to handle chips. I was so excited.”

She left the tables with some winnings, and some confidence. Her poker life took off from there – and that hand ranking card hasn’t been needed since.

Hitting the Books and Crushing the Tables

The Roberts figured out early that working on their game with some outside help would be a good idea. Team Roberts has attended several LearnWPT events, spending many hours with instructors Nick Binger and Andrew Lichtenberger.

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“I took a couple classes and realized how much I didn’t know,” Scott says. “Then we took one together with Nick and it just kind of opened our eyes up. It was just incredible how different the pros play from how we were playing.”

“After the first day, I was thinking, ‘This guy’s nuts. This is not going to work. Why did we take this class?’”

However, they stuck it out for the second day of training. The concepts Binger was presenting began making more sense. They headed to the Venetian that night and used some strategies they’d been taught at the tables. One thing Binger told the couple to practice in a tournament or two was raising on the button every time action folded to them, no matter what cards they had. If one of the blinds three-bet, he told them to four-bet. This overly aggressive strategy would take them out of their comfort zone of passive play.

“I told him I was going to need a few drinks before I played the tournament,” he says.

The coaching worked and Lisa made the final table that night and they won $10,000 playing tournaments that week.

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“I was very unaggressive,” Lisa says of her play before attending LearnWPT events. “I didn’t know what to do with anything. I’d limp, call, and maybe I’d raise. For me, I learned when to be aggressive and when to feel okay with being aggressive in the right situation regardless of your cards sometimes. I didn’t have any of that in my arsenal – I had no arsenal.”

For Scott, opening hand ranges was an idea he had never much considered. He may have put a player on a certain hand but had trouble adjusting his game to those kinds of scenarios.

The new concepts made his game more complex. Team Roberts also learned more about playing in position to maximize profits. They’ve gone on to take more advanced classes with each session building on others. The lab days are a particular favorite of theirs, where a group plays at a table and break down hands played with instructors.

“It ties everything together from what you learned the two days before in the class,” Scott says.

Would they recommend LearnWPT to other players?

“If they’re people we play against, definitely not,” Scott says laughing.

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Lisa adds: “I think it is the best poker money that we’ve ever spent. I know we were hesitant the first time, but it made major changes for us as far as winning. It’s an incredible class. You don’t really know what you don’t know until you take it.”

As recreational players, they try to find events that fit in Scott’s schedule running his real estate business. He plans to retire within the next five years and then the Roberts will play even more including some WPT tournaments. In the meantime, they plan on keeping their recent success going, and continue working on their game with LearnWPT sessions.

As Lisa notes: “There’s always more to learn.”


Sean Chaffin is a freelance writer in Crandall, Texas, and his work appears in numerous websites and publications. He also writes feature stories and tournament coverage for WPT.com. Follow him on Twitter @PokerTraditions. For story assignments, email [email protected]



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Whether you are a tournament or cash game player, looking to advance your move arsenal, or ready to master the game, attending a LearnWPT Live Strategy Workshop is the quickest and most effective way to expand your No-Limit Hold’em game plan and get you on a path to success.

See the current schedule below including:

  • LearnWPT Live at Commerce Advanced Tournament Workshop this February 15-16, 2020 in Los Angeles with Nick Binger and Andrew "LuckyChewy" Lichtenberger which features a freeroll satellite with a $3500 WPT Main Event seat as 1st prize. This event is limited to only 32 Students!


If you are ready for better results at the tables it’s time for you to take action and get a proven winning game plan to help get you there.

Hey, maybe you’ll be our next success story just like Scott and Lisa 😉.

Questions? Contact the Support Team (888) 600-5593 or [email protected] and we’ll be happy to help.

WPT GTO Trainer: Get Started

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PLAY - LEARN - IMPROVE
With the WPT GTO Trainer!

There have been many poker “trainers” in the past that allowed you to play poker hands for practice. However, these have been powered by people’s opinions of what is good play and not true Game Theory Optimal (GTO) strategy.

What makes WPT’s GTO Trainer different?

  • The WPT GTO Trainer allows you to play through true Nash equilibrium solutions to various No-Limit Hold'em poker Scenarios (over 1 BILLION solved spots and counting!)
  • Get instant feedback on the precise EV (Expected Value) Loss of every move you make
  • Rapidly plug leaks and learn the GTO strategies that have dominated the highest stakes games in the world

OK, time to get started...


TRAINING ON A MOBILE DEVICE?

To play the WPT GTO Trainer without the need for screen adjustment between hands, simply add LearnWPT.com as a shortcut to your iOS and Android mobile device.

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Click below for a few simple steps to train optimally using the GTO Trainer from a mobile device:


GET THERE

Using the WPT GTO Trainer is fast and easy! Members can click TRAINER in the top navigation bar or mobile menu.

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GET STARTED

Members must be logged in to your LearnWPT.com Membership to start Training.

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1) Select the Specific Spot you want to train from the available list of Scenarios (ex: MP2 Open vs Button Call).

  • Spots will be either a Cash Game or Tournament Scenario (labeled as Cash or MTT)
  • Click the drop down box to select what game type or strategy you would like to train
  • Note: You can select multiple options in the drop down menu to narrow your search

2) When selecting the Spot to train, take note of the Effective Stack size in Big Blinds and Pot Size information to consider when making your decision (see image below for example). These factors will remain constant at the start of each new hand based on the specific Scenario you’ve selected.

Here are some additional tips for choosing which spot to train:

  • Your Position and Action (Hero) is always listed first in the Scenario name
  • Each Scenario will have you training from either In Position or Out of Position (noted in the description of Scenario action)
  • Cash Game Scenarios use a green table
  • Tournament Scenarios use a blue table

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3) The description of Scenario explains the Preflop action.

  • Example - MP2 Open vs Button Call Scenario:
    • The Hero (you) are the MP2 player and Open to 2.5 BB preflop
    • The Button player (Villain) calls and everyone else folds
    • Action starts with the flop and 7.5 BB in the pot

4) View the Hand Range Charts per Position for this Scenario.

  • The hand range charts for Hero and Villain show respective ranges going to the flop (after their last preflop action)
  • Percentages listed in specific hand combos indicate the frequency with which those specific hands are in the range
  • Lighter or darker shades of each color also visually indicate the frequency for these hands.
    • The LAST preflop aggressor's hand range is shown in red
    • The preflop caller's hand range is shown in green


Hint:
Select the image of the hand range charts per position (ie MP2 or Button) to expand to a larger view


BEGIN YOUR TRAINING

After selecting the Scenario you wish to train, simply click or tap on the START NEW SESSION button to start!

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MAKE YOUR DECISIONS

Click START NEW SESSION and you will instantly be faced with a postflop decision based on the Scenario you chose after.

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1) You'll immediately be faced with your first decision.

  • Choose Fold, Call, Check, Bet, or Raise by clicking the button
  • Bet sizing options are those commonly recommended by GTO Play
  • Villain’s responses to your decisions are GTO - you’ll often face multiple decisions in a hand

2) After each decision, you'll see the EV Loss and Played % for your action directly on the table.

  • EV (Expected Value) Loss - This shows the number of big blinds you would lose against a GTO player if you took this action
  • Played % - This shows how often a GTO Player would take the same action you took

Remember - EV Loss of 0.00 does not mean the GTO Player would take that action 100% of the time (the difference is due balancing hand ranges through mixed strategies and maximizing EV for your overall range)

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3) Your goal is to select the action for each individual hand that is as close to 0.00 EV as possible.

  • EV Loss of 0.00 is the same action a GTO Player would take
  • 0.00 EV Loss means you broke even against a GTO Player


4) The Ideal GTO Action is noted in the top center of the table.

  • A green check-mark next to your action means it is GTO
  • Next is the action a GTO Player would take and how often they would take that specific action
  • Ideal Action and Frequency are displayed so you know the GTO play for each action immediately

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5) Multiple actions in a given spot are often "correct" according to GTO Play.

  • GTO Play has many mixed strategies, where plays are made a specific percentage of the time
  • You will often see actions with a very low EV Loss (e.g. -0.01) and a reasonable Played % (e.g. 35%)
    • These actions are not "wrong" and are part of a balanced overall GTO strategy.
    • However, if a play results in high EV Loss (color coded in red), you should generally avoid that play unless you have compelling exploitative reasons to make it against a specific opponent

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  • If the Percentage Played for an action is 1% or less, then that action is rarely taken by a GTO Player and you should generally avoid that play
    • If you do take an action with a Played % of 1% or less, all subsequent decisions will display "N/A" in red, since that entire line should be avoided.


EV Loss Color Coding Hint:
Green = Near GTO Play, Orange = Take Caution, Red = Probable Leak in Your Game



HINTS AND TIPS

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  • Toggle the AUTO ADVANCE button to advance to the next hand decision automatically (green - default) or manually (red)
  • Click the FULL SCREEN button for a large view
  • Review these instructions anytime by clicking the HOW TO PLAY button
  • Click the EXIT SESSION button to complete your Training Session and review your stats on the Session Summary Page


SESSION SUMMARY INFORMATION

You’ve put in the work, now you can start to see where your specific leaks are for each Scenario. Your Session Summary will break down your hand compared to GTO Play.

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Reading and Interpreting the Data:

KEY STATS:

1) Overall EV Loss in big blinds Per 100 hands played.

  • Goal is to get as close to 0.00 as you can
  • 0.00 EV Loss is impossible for humans to attain in the long run
  • Do your best and focus on strategic spots giving you the most trouble
    • Do not be discouraged by a high EV Loss in the beginning. When new to GTO Trainer, it's very common for players to have an EV Loss of -50.00 BBs/100 or more

2) Number of Hands Played in your Session

  • Sample size is important when considering relevant statistics
  • A minimum of 200 hands is the recommended sample size to start seeing stats for your play
  • Schedule a set number of hands each day to practice a specific Scenario and keep track of your progress

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AGGRESSION:

3) AGGRESSION gives an instant snapshot of the key actions You (shown in Red) are taking across all hands played vs what actions a GTO Player (shown in Blue) would take

  • Don't Worry, if you initially have a huge gap in one direction vs GTO - this is not uncommon


Hint:
Hover over the bar graph to see the number of hands in that session each action was taken by you vs a GTO Player

HAND TYPES:

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1) HAND TYPES compare your play to GTO Play divided by the different categories of hands (i.e. pairs, flushes, trips, etc).

  • Your Action is on the top bar and GTO Play is the bottom bar


Hint:
Green (aggressive action) = Bet or Raise, Yellow (passive action) = Check or Call, Red = Fold. A color key to be implemented shortly!

2) How to read your results - in this example from the dashboard image for the PAIR hand category shown above:

  • You chose to either Check or Call 67% of the time and Fold 33% of the time when you had a 1-Pair hand in this given scenario (top line of the bar graph)
  • GTO Strategy is to Bet/Raise 17% of the time, Check/Call 67% of the time, and Fold 17% of the time (bottom line of the bar graph)


3) If the top line results are very different from bottom line results (after a large number of hands played) then you know you are playing those hand types differently than how a GTO Player would play them. These are the spots you want to study first.

Don’t get intimidated by the many stats listed or if there are big differences between your play and GTO Play. Keep training the same Scenario and focus on your biggest leak before you play each Session. Before you know it you’ll be closer to 0.00 EV Loss (and GTO Play!).

HAND BREAKDOWN:

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1) HAND BREAKDOWN displays all of the hands you've played in a session listed by hand type, position, board summary, and EV Loss.

  • Click the REPLAYER button next to a specific hand played to show the action unfold and review for study later
  • Have questions about that hand? After replaying the hand click the ASK A PRO button to send your hand the LearnWPT Pros for analysis using the Ask a Pro Feature

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2) Select a specific hand played to see these details:

  • BOARD - Shows the specific rank and suit for each street dealt (flop, turn, river)
  • ACTION - The action Hero (you) chose on that street (bet/raise, call/check, fold)
  • GTO PLAY % - Percentage of time a GTO Player would take a specific action if faced with the same decision
  • EV LOSS - The number of big blinds your action would lose against a GTO player
    • Evaluate EV Loss in Proportion to Pot size
    • An EV Loss of -1.00 is significant in a 6.5 BB pot. It is far less significant in a 100 BB pot
    • The color coding of EV Loss on the Trainer table takes into account pot size

3) Each street of action is broken down with a color coded bar graph noting the specific actions a GTO player would take if faced with the same decision as HERO, including the percentage of time a GTO player would take those specific actions.

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  • In the above example our decision to bet 2.50 on the flop you will see that a GTO Player:
    • Checks 56% of the time
    • Bets small 15% of the time
    • Bets large 28% of the time
    • Green = Bet or Raise, Yellow = Check or Call, Red = Fold

4) In some instances you will see gradient shading (lightest to darkest moving left to right) representing the bet-sizing that a GTO Player would choose in a given spot.

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  • In the example above:
    • Bet/Raise small amount (lightest green)
    • Bet/Raise larger amount (darker green)
    • Bet/Raise largest amount (darkest green)

REVIEW PREVIOUS SESSIONS

Review any previous Sessions from the main GTO Trainer Dashboard!

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1) Select the Spot you would like to review from the list of available Scenarios.

  • The total number of hands played as well as your total EV Loss overall for the specific Scenario are listed for quick reference


2) Click the REVIEW SESSIONS button.

3) Select a Session you played from the list.

  • Overall EV Loss, Session Date, and Total Hands played are listed for each Session within that specific Scenario
  • For best results and rapid improvement start by studying your largest EV Loss Spots
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4) Click the Blue REVIEW SESSIONS button to get the specific statistics for the individual Session within a Scenario. A session review window will open.


IT'S TIME TO PLAY

Now that you’ve had a chance to walk through the WPT GTO Trainer it’s time to Play!

Whether you need practice postflop after defending your Big Blind in a Tournament, or you want to drill 3-bet defense from middle position with deep stacks in a Cash Game, it’s just one click away.

Train as often as you like! Get real time feedback on trouble Spots and Ask the LearnWPT Pros with one click.

Play Real GTO Hands Online!
Now Part of Your LearnWPT.com Membership



For a detailed video walk through of what’s covered here make sure you’re logged in to your LearnWPT Membership and watch Nick introduce the WPT GTO Trainer here and guide you through using the Trainer here.

Need help interpreting the results and strategy on adjusting your game?

Use the LearnWPT Ask a Pro Feature and the Community Forums to get answers and guidance from Nick, Eric, and Chewy. We know you’ll have a lot of questions about GTO Strategy and we’re here to help!

Nick and the LearnWPT Instructors will be showing you plenty of specific ways to use the WPT GTO Trainer to improve your poker game in future Strategy Episodes.

Until then, what are you waiting for...

Click Below And Start Training

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We Want Your Feedback!
While using the WPT GTO Trainer you can click the blue feedback widget or email [email protected]m with any questions or suggestions.

Tony Dunst's Fold on the River...

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LearnWPT Instructor Tony Dunst recently faced a tough river spot against two time WPT Champion J.C. Tran at a $3500 buy-in event at Thunder Valley Casino.

Check out Tony's blog where he breaks exactly what he was thinking during this heads up battle against a fellow WPT Champion.

Learn more about Tony and how he can help improve your game by clicking here: Meet LearnWPT Instructor Tony Dunst

P.S. Join Tony on Tour and put what you've learned into play at the table! Click here to view the World Poker Tour's calendar of events.


Start Improving Your Game!
Join LearnWPT and Get:

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Think Like a Pro


Join (just $5 your first month) to start improving your game!

Have Questions about LearnWPT? Email us at [email protected] and we’ll be happy to help!

8♠8♣ Facing a Preflop All-In, what do you do here?

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DECISION POINT:
In a Tournament where blinds are 2,000/4,000 with a 4,000 big blind ante, it folds to the Hijack who pushes all-in for 13BB. The Cutoff and the Button both fold. You have 8♠8♣ in the Small Blind with a 32BB stack and action is on you. What do you do here?

PRO ANSWER: In a Tournament with 2,000/4,000 blinds with a 4,000 big blind ante we are dealt pocket 8s in the Small Blind. It folds around to the Hijack who moves all-in for 52,000 chips. Action folds to us and we have a decision to make.

The first thing we want to do when facing an all-in is estimate our opponent’s hand range. In this particular spot they shoved 13 big blinds. Since most players don’t start shoving all-in until they hit around 10 big blinds, this is far more likely to be a reasonable range of hands instead of a very wide range. In addition, our opponent may not want to play with a low stack to pot ratio (SPR) postflop.

With that in mind, it is less likely, although not impossible, that our opponent has QQ/KK/AA since they would be far more likely to just raise with those hands to encourage some action. If we put our opponent on a range of pairs 22-JJ, A2s+, ATo+, and KQ (both suited and offsuit) we are roughly 59% versus that range. With dead money in the pot it is very hard to justify passing up on nearly a 60% edge in a Tournament. Even against a range that does include the big pairs we are likely to be around a 55/45 favorite.

Continued below...

We could potentially fold if we had a player specific read that they are shoving much narrower here, but without that read we just have too big of an edge with additional dead money in the pot from the blinds and antes.

A shove in this spot is nearly half the Big Blind’s stack so if we continue we want to reraise all-in to maximize our leverage over the Big Blind and shut them out of the pot with big cards that have reasonable equity against us.

Moving all-in is the best play.

How would you play it?
Share your answer in the comments below!


Ready For Better Tournament Results?

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LearnWPT Tournament Strategy Workshops are for poker players who know the fundamentals of tournament strategy and are ready to take their game from good to great.

Attend a Live Workshop and learn...

  • Strategies to take you from a player who "min-cashes" to one who dominates the final table
  • What it takes to "close the deal" in Tournaments including final tables, short-handed play, heads up play, and deal-making
  • How to thrive in today’s competitive tournaments

Start improving your results with the help of LearnWPT's world-class teachers and Pros who boast over 17 Million in combined tournament winnings!


Have a question about LearnWPT?
Contact us at [email protected] or (888)600-5593 and we’ll be happy to help!


Creating a Winning Habit

We know, you want it all now….

The calendar has just turned over and 2020 is gonna be your year, no matter what it takes. You’re committed to making the changes that will transform your game and your life.

  • Effortless decision-making
  • A dynamic game-plan that accounts for all the situations you’ll face at the table
  • A calm and unshakable mental game
  • And maybe even to shed a few pounds from the holidays 🍗

But we both know that in order to make a real change it takes small pieces of consistent effort over time.

We see it each January... everyone rushes to join the local gym in attempt to affect change immediately. You can barely find a parking space, let alone an open treadmill or weight machine.

Fast forward to March 1st.... you can pick any machine and park with ease! Everyone who made the big commitment to exercise and make a change is gone.

So how can YOU avoid the January rush and the March drop-off in your game? Simple, commit to a cycle of constant improvement.

It’s a fact that new habits take time to form, a little over 2 months on average (p.s. 2 months of LearnWPT will cost you only $34!).

Not sure how to do that for your poker game? Here are some suggestions to get started today:


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  • Choose one section of your game that you want to improve such as preflop play, and commit to memorizing hand ranges by position. Pick a hand range to try and memorize for 15 min a day then move on to the next range.

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  • Schedule time on your calendar to study by watching Strategy Episodes on LearnWPT.com. Block out 15 mins twice a week with no distractions and watch an Episode to reinforce a strategy or to start learning a new concept.

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  • Practice strategies by playing 25 hands each day using the WPT GTO Trainer. You'll find specific leaks, narrowed down to hand categories and specific actions, by playing solved poker hands. There’s no grey area, simply play, review your Session Data, and see which leak is YOUR biggest.

Winning players train consistently to change bad habits and sharpen decision-making.

Let LearnWPT help you build the same consistency, one day at a time!

That’s what we’re here for.
-LearnWPT


PS
Join LearnWPT.com now for just $5 and you'll also have the ability to Ask a Pro all of your poker questions.