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Gus Hansen talks about his recent online losses, what the future holds for him in Online Poker, and the Full Tilt Poker vs PokerStars heads up matchups with Rob “Hippy” King for

Category: Interview
Tags: EPT 9 London, Gus Hansen
Added by: Hippy80
Poker Room: Full Tilt Poker
Length: 14:52

Discuss this video in our Poker Forum: Gus Hansen Interview at EPT 9 London Forum Thread

Full Transcript

Rob King: Hi, I’m here at the PokerStars EPT London. Earlier on, I caught up with Gus Hansen and we had a little bit of a chat.

I’m here with Gus Hansen with Full Tilt Poker. Hi, Gus. How are you doing today?

Gus Hansen: Okay. Kind of looking forward to beating up on Daniel Negreanu. We’ll see if I can accomplish that goal.

Rob King: We will indeed. We’ll come back to that a bit later on, actually. I’ve got some questions for you. How does it feel to be back on Full Tilt?

Gus Hansen: If you ask me right here now, I have two answers and they’re in complete opposite directions. It’s great to be back. I mean I really enjoy Full Tilt. I’ve always enjoyed the software. I’ve always enjoyed the playing experience. Lately, which is probably not a secret, I’ve been doing really horrible online. Astoundingly bad results. So, I’m a bit bummed about that, so one good, one bad.

Rob King: So, is there any difference now that Full Tilt has come back? You were part of the original Full Tilt. Is there any difference between that and professionals, from your point of view?

Gus Hansen: It’s a smaller group. It’s three crazy guys and instead of some more methodical, rational thinkers, we just have three crazy guys. Obviously there’s a method to the madness, so, it’s a different group, but, yeah. I really don’t know what else to say. I think we have a good little group and who knows? Maybe we’ll add more in the future.

Rob King: Well coming back to that bad start online again. You obviously had a horrible end to 2012 and 2013 hasn’t been looking up that much, either. Have you any idea what’s behind that? Is it something that you’re doing wrong or is it something you’re just down to playing variants?

Gus Hansen: I will blame a little bit of everything. One, I think I’ve been a little rusty. Basically almost haven’t played online for a year and a half or at least very limited, and then getting back and jumping right into the action in different games and playing against the toughest players. All the tables, basically Omaha Hi/Lo, Triple Draw Pot Limit Omaha, mixed game, whatever, playing against the best players; being a little rusty. That’s not good.

I haven’t been, I think I’ve been a little sloppy, a little lazy, not preparing myself well enough when I sit down. It’s like I sit down but maybe there’s a TV show in the background. So, a little sloppy, a little lazy. I have not been lucky, I will say that. Hopefully not at least, that would be really bad if I’ve been lucky in the meantime losing that much. So I think, really, it’s a combination of those three; being a little rusty, not being 100%, not playing my A-game against the toughest player in the world and a bit of a bad run, as well. So that’s basically a lethal combination for losing your money. That’s all I’ve got to say.

Rob King: Well, I’ve actually noticed. I spent a lot of time writing about Viktor Blom. I run a daily article on how he’s been running. Both you and him seem to pick out the best players in a field to go up against. Is there a plan for that? Are you looking for the best games?

Gus Hansen: That’s part of the insanity I was talking about earlier. Actually, it’s a thing I’ve probably done in my entire career. It helped me a lot back in the days when I started playing backgammon. I rose through the ranks very quickly because I always made sure that there was somebody I could pick something up and learn from; and no matter what, it is easier to learn when you play against better opponents, tough players. So in that sense, it’s something I’ve always done. I think I should be a little more careful because, obviously, it’s also harder to win when you pick toughest opponents. And obviously with my result, I am not Bill Gates. At some point, I have to turn this around or slow down a little bit. So hopefully, I can turn things around but maybe also be a little more selective in the future.

Rob King: I have to ask. Who do you think is the best deuce-to-seven player at the moment?

Gus Hansen: Who’s the best deuce-to-seven player out there? I would think, going by result, it’s Alex [Lamoon]. I mean, I don’t know, I haven’t seen who’s the biggest winner.

Rob King: It’s Alex and [Seth] I think.

Gus Hansen: But Alex has been absolutely annihilating me. Every time we play, he’s been playing good and he always has the best hand. Again, a tough combination to be up against, so it seems like he is the one I’ve had the most trouble with. I would have to go with him.

Rob King: Would you say Sally Woo for ’08?

Gus Hansen: ’08, obviously I’ve played against all three of the guys, and in my book, Sally would take the notch. Seems like he/she, it’s just an impressive rate making the right decisions of this and that and obviously, that’s what it’s all about in poker.

Rob King: Coming back to the Full Tilt versus Stars, it’s a big thing that’s going on today. It was Stars still from the tweet that you said Daniel. What was your thinking behind that? Was it just an [inaudible 06:18]

Gus Hansen: We’ve been through it. I haven’t exactly had too many “hooray” experiences online and that maybe just surfing online or maybe a fan brought it to my attention that they liked that hand. And I said “Oh, that was a good hand for me.” That basically kicked it off. I sent a little tweet and he sent back a real needle. You’ve got to give him credit, that was very well thought out. It did sting a little bit, but that’s how it goes. I’ll survive. I’m a big boy now. So that kind of started off and obviously, now, that we’ve got this complete setup, we had to kind of get Full Tilt and Stars involved and we ended up with a pretty nice setup, I think.

Rob King: What do you think about Daniel’s picks? He had quite a large number of plays to pick from.

Gus Hansen: I would say from my point of view, I did some great picking. Since I only had two, it wasn’t that hard. No, as far as Daniel goes, I knew they were basically in the mix. Elky and Ike. That seemed pretty obvious. Obviously, there’s other top players. Jason Mercier, Vanessa Selbst, amongst others. So he had a big group and I think he actually did a good thing. He did a little tweeting and a little voting and once he got down to five players, he did a little more voting. So and that’s how he ended up with those two wins. I mean, obviously, from my point of view, very tough opponents. It’s a tough task.

Rob King: The matchup you picked. You got Elky against [inaudible 08:19] which we saw earlier on and unfortunately for you, Elky swept. You’ve got Der against [inaudible 08:27] How do you feel that’s going to pan out?

Gus Hansen: I think that on preparation, I think Stars is going to be the favorite. They’re more methodical where we’re more “hands-on, sit down at the table and play.” I think from watching the match with Elky and Isildur, it seemed like Elky was a little bit better prepared for what he was going to do and how he was going to deal with different things that Isildur might throw at him. Where Isildur got a little flustered by the constant min raise by Elky. So I think, obviously, Elky’s not just going to sit down and win 3-0 against Isildur. But I think from the play, it looked like he had a better strategy, a more well-thought out plan and that could be part of the reason why he ended up winning that match. So hopefully, we can come back. I mean, Ike, that’s the one in the group I know the least. I think I’ve only played against him twice in tournaments for a short period of time, but the word is out that he is as tough as nails. He knows this format, this sit-and-go format, supposedly, is one of his strong points. That’s going to be a tough task for Der. Obviously, he’s up for the challenge and hopefully he can pull it off. If he does that, then we have the walk in the park. I just have to beat Daniel. I mean I’ve done it before.

Rob King: I mean, do you have any tactics against Daniel? Obviously, I won’t go and tell him.

Gus Hansen: No, I have some ideas. I mean, obviously, I would like to throw at him what he doesn’t expect. But I’m not quite sure what he does expect. I do have a history of limping a lot in heads-up matches. I’ve got to continue to do that. Maybe, maybe not. I haven’t picked a specific scenario and obviously, no matter what I start out, I have to vary my game no matter what. But I’m going to try and throw a few curveballs in there.

Rob King: Okay. Away from the tables, what’s happening in Gus Hansen’s life? I mean there was some racketing. Was it racketing or racket…

Gus Hansen: Racket Lon.

Rob King: Racket Lon.

Gus Hansen: Racket L-O-N.

Rob King: Okay.

Gus Hansen: Which is a four-game sport. It’s basically a decathlon for rackets. It’s tennis, the most well known, squash, badminton and table tennis. And you compete in all four sports. I did play their world championship and had a decent tournament. I could have gone further than I did, but, unfortunately, I guess that wasn’t meant to be. But I had a good world championship. It’s a fun sport. I’m definitely planning on kicking up my practice schedule and competing in the world championship again late this year. So hopefully, I can do better than my quarterfinal last year.

Rob King: Are you planning on doing any backgammon fixtures or are you sticking to poker at the moment?

Gus Hansen: I am still a backgammon player. I have always said and will always continue to say, backgammon is my A-game. I’m a better backgammon player than I am a poker player. And I think as far as backgammon goes, I haven’t played that much, so I’m probably going to be rusty as I’ve mentioned about my online game in poker. But I’m going to pick up that very quick, I know that from experience because I’ve had lapses of not playing and then get right back into the action. So, if I don’t turn the Internet around, maybe I’ll get to backgammon. I don’t have any plans, but I know the last couple of years, they’ve had the world championship of backgammon at the same time as the World Championship in Poker.

Rob King: The World Series. Yeah.

Gus Hansen: The World Series. So that was an easy call to make, but this year, they’ve actually moved it. So I’m probably going to play both this year. So that gives me a chance to win that title which I haven’t done before, but we’ll see.

Rob King: Coming back to poker, do you have any goals that you want to set for yourself this year? Obviously, you want to get unstuck. Is there anything else beyond that you really want to do this year?

Gus Hansen: The good news is that I am not stuck.

Rob King: You’re not stuck?

Gus Hansen: I’m stuck for the year, yeah. But I still have money in my pocket. That’s what I meant. No, my online numbers are not looking too pretty, but I can still afford a sandwich. So in that sense, that’s my main goal right now. Basically get on a little bit of a winning streak not because luck turns around, but because I turn my focus around. Maybe a little more selective play better. That’s basically my goal right now. Once I’ve achieved that, I did say once. Obviously, that’s for not sure because we just pointed out. Alex Lamoon is not easy to beat, Sally Woo is not easy to beat. Maybe I have to stay away from those guys. Who knows? That’s my main focus right now, to turn it around. And hopefully, we can talk a month from now and it looks a little bit better. We’ll see.

Rob King: Here’s hoping. Well, thank you very much for your time Gus, and good luck in the EPT this weekend.

Gus Hansen: Cheers.

Rob King: Thank you.