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My Two Cents: Bad Beats & Lucky Draws by Phil Hellmuth

My Two Cents: Bad Beats & Lucky Draws by Phil Hellmuth

Let's start this off by noting that I don't go out and buy books all too often. I'm more of a wait for it to hit the library type of guy. That's not to say I'm some total leech who doesn't want to put a dime towards anything of worth. It's just that when it comes to my money - whenever the option is available - I like to try it before I buy it. If I read something from a library and really like it, there's a good chance I'm going to inevitably fork up the dough to own it. If it's worth its weight, then I respect that the people involved in making it happen deserve to be paid. But if it's total tripe, then I've done the smartest thing possible by testing the waters via the public library.

All that duly noted, I won't be forking up $20 to have Bad Beats & Lucky Draws readily available on my bookshelf at home. In fact, I don't foresee ever seeing the need to read it again. That's not to say it was a piece of dung, but it just didn't deliver its full potential. Maybe I'm asking too much, or maybe I expect every hand to be the shizzy, but I swear there were way too many mediocre entries to be book worthy. It just seemed to me like Phil was thinking one day, "I wonder if I could slap a book together with some random hands, give a little BS about each hand and other pros, then see if anyone will buy it." Unfortunately I'm sure many a person - possibly someone reading this right now - has this book perched upon their book shelf at home. Don't feel bad...whether you like it or not, if you are a fan of poker, Phil Hellmuth will seep into your being and there's nothing you can do about it. He has a way of doing that. I must note I think Phil is good for the game. I enjoy watching tournaments with him involved cause I know it will be more interesting than without him. Unfortunately for him - and us - that does not make him a good author.

Let's go ahead and break this down into 3 classic categories:

The Good

Luckily for Phil, some of the hands are actually interesting. On occasion I do recall finishing a paragraph and saying "wow that was a bad beat" or "lucky bastard...what a suckout." Unfortunately those times are few and far between. Some of the best entries are towards the back when other pros give their recollection of memorable hands, though I must admit, even some of those entries were pretty blah. Wait, this is the good section right? Let me get back to more of the good stuff. Um....eerrr....yeah so, the book gave me something to do during lunch and definitely made falling asleep while reading in bed quite easy.

The! Bad!

The absolute worst part of this book was the use of exclamation points! I swear he used an exclamation point after every fucking sentence! No shit! Every sentence! It was brutal! Phil, I have some advice for you...settle the fuck down! Not everything is so monumentaly important to be deserving of an exclamation point!

Another item that got a little old was his name dropping. I realize he is a pro and does spend alot of time with other pros and celebs, but please Phil, enough with the atta boys. He would write briefly about a particular person - usually another pro - then end the paragraph with something to the tune of, "Wow that's incredible [insert pro name] deserve it...can I wash your car...let me know next time you need a BJ....I love you." It is quite a contrast to the Phil you see on TV, thus hardly believable. I know editors on TV can paint an untrue picture of people just by crafty editing, but even Phil admits to being a brat. Yet he bends over backwards in this book to tell everyone and their grandmother just how fantastic they are.

The Ugarte

OK I've written enough bad things about this book so I'm gonna finish this up with something a little more positive. Phil is good for poker. He believes in himself and he's a damn good poker player. Possibly the best ever...I just wish he'd let other people say that about him.

Now, let's pimp a fellow blogger. I've always wanted to do the Good, the Bad, the Ugly thing, but replace Ugly with Ugarte. It just works all too well. I first came upon Ugarte (a comedian named Rick Blaine) at a blogger tourney and I loved his picture on PokerStars. We did a little chatting and I've never spoken to him since. However, I have kept up with his blog and he's got a good thing going. He's always got a funny to share with his readers and occasionally he's got some Poker Grovel. So without further writing, I give you...

Ugarte's Poker Grovel

posted by TripJax @ 7:41 PM,


At 3:01 PM, Blogger BSN said...

I have to agree. I'm finding his praise of the other pros to be a bit disingenuous. About the only good thing to say is that each of his little stories is about the perfect length for reading on the crapper in the morning.


At 4:22 PM, Blogger partyguy said...

cool blog. i don't have a blog yet, just a site about party poker


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