What actually defines a great poker player? Well, I am sure that most people have their own individual interpretations of what that actually means but in nearly all cases I think that “greatness” is over-exaggerated. Also when you consider someone a “great” player then you have to look at all aspects of their game and not just one or two. For example, if a player had five or six WSOP bracelets or more then would you consider this person a “great” player? Well, it is clear that someone who had that kind of record would clearly be famous but lots of famous players have technical holes in their games.
If you took a very experienced best blackjack strategy is found at blackjack who had numerous poker titles but no experience at playing cash games or playing online and certainly no decent record of success in them then could you really call this player great? Also what about players who have titles to their name but are constantly looking for backers and people to stake them? How can you be a great player if you are constantly going broke? Or are we thus dividing the act of winning and making money with keeping it?
Do you have to amass wealth in poker to be considered great? All this seems like too many questions and no answers and this highlights just why calling someone a great player isn’t as straight forward as you may think. I often think that a player can be “great” without even being known to the poker world. But the word “great” could quite easily be substituted by the words “very good” or “exceptional” or “powerful” or whichever descriptive you wish to put into it. The question is, what are the rules of blackjack?
So, in my opinion, the word “great” is just that…..a word and nothing more. It is often used in places where it shouldn’t and not used in places where it is deserved. I think that when some people call certain players as “great” then they often mean the way that these players could amass money and dominate opponents. Looking through history then and it is full of players who were exceptional at amassing chips and winning titles. But in true “great poker player” style then many of these players are often always searching for someone to stake them or money after going broke……again! I have never gone along with the notion that all great players have been broke from time to time.
All I can say is that their definition must be massively different to mine. Because as these players were making their way up through the levels then whatever happened to their bankrolls? If they spewed them away then isn’t part of being a “great” poker player having a good bankroll and money management skills? So your definition may be different to mine but one thing is clear and this is that the definition isn’t as clear cut as many people think.