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Charles Hawk's picture
Interview with Alexandru C.: "there's still at least 5 years in which a midstakes grinder can make a decent living"


Charles Hawk: Introduce yourself to our community.

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: I'm a chill guy from Romania, 27 year old. I dig good music and film, like traveling and visiting museums. I've been playing poker for around 6 years now, turned pro about 5 years ago.

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: I guess main poker achievement would be making SNE twice and learning the fkin game better :) I've been a high volume player for so long. Now I'm mainly focusing on improving my game more than printing vpps as rb was lowered and will continue so.


Charles Hawk: Which limits do you play? Are you looking forward to $200s spin? Do you think it will be ever introduced?

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: Playing 100s spins on ps.eu atm and been playing 50-100s on ps.fr ever since they added it until 31st December. Yeah, 200s spins would for sure increase my hourly and I hope they add it but it doesn't make that much sense for them as it would just make recs lose their money quicker and on top of that a 2 million top jackpot wouldn't be that much more enticing than the 1 million on 100s.

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: I think the psychological impact of playing to hit 1 mil or 2 mil is quite similar


Charles Hawk: Yes, that make sense.

Charles Hawk: Tell me 3-5 basic tips how to increase poker winnings for a low stakes grinder?

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: First off a lowstakes grinder should stop focusing on multitabling and shortterm profit; he should just try and acumulate as much knowledge he can about the game, improve and just start adding tables when he's obliterating a certain stake at which he's comfortable with the evhourly.

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: Secondly I think a pregrind day routine is a must. even if it's just drinking a glass of water, having breakfast and taking a 20 minute walk outside. It does wonders. Just don't wake up and jump at the tables. That's a very bad idea. I've done both so many times and the differences in playquality are absurd.

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: Be very careful with your bankroll. Focus on building it with proper grind and studying; don't go withdrawing every other day for some shitty-opulent thing that's you'll probably use twice and dump it on the desk. Only withdraw funds for vital stuff (rent/food et al) until you're a reg at a stake which permits some self-indulgence.

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: Take breaks regularly. I, for one, like taking a 30min break every 2 hours or so. Leaving your desk during the break would be preferable, but a man's gotta reddit what a man's gotta reddit sometimes.

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: Start putting money into an emergency account. 6 month imperative costs stashed into an account would do wonders when you're on that dreaded big downswing (which will invariably come at a certain point in your career). Having a small nestegg for rainy months will provide a great anti-stress cushion and help you cope with any swing much easier.


Charles Hawk: Tell me about your perfomance this year. How are you doing? Any graphs?

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: well, i took a rather long break from the grind this year but my graphs are open on spinlyzer


Charles Hawk: Tell me about the reg-to-fish ratio you are facing in the tables usually? How often do you play against 2 recs? How often do you play against 2 regs?

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: It's pretty rarely i get two recs on my tables. I'd say around 30% of my games are vs 2 recs, about the same amount are vs 2 regs.


Charles Hawk: Tell me in detail how does your learning process look? Also - what is your daily routine?

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: Well I usually discuss hands with several fellow grinders, review my own sessions from time to time and try to spot particular scenarios that I should fix; I like looking into games I played bad in and figure out what was the reason I made that lame spew. I do some hud analysis and define ranges accordingly.

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: Regarding daily routine: I usually start playing about 3 hours after I woke up. I try putting in at least 5 hours of quality poker per grind day, but 4 A game hours are sufficient. I take 3-4 breaks during a typical grind day; either I take my dog Max for a walk, chill watching a tv show episode with the female or scroll ze interwebs.


Charles Hawk: Do you have any techniques how to avoid autopilot and frustrations/tilt which comes from bad decisions?

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: Yeah, snap take break and do some small physical exercise and try to regain proper focus. If that doesn't work i just quit for a few hours.

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: Usually by the time I get back at the tables all the autopiloting and bad mood from bad decisions dissapears. I think it all starts to get easier once you got a proper gameplan put in place.


Charles Hawk: What new have you learned this year as a poker pro? What new have you learned off-tables?

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: I think I got better at playing vs regs. I believe putting pressure in unorthodox spots increases ev. Basically I'm a lot better at spotting reg tendencies compared to 2015 and my exploitative game is decent.


Charles Hawk: How positive are you about online poker future? Do you think 2016 changes is just the beginning from new owners?

Alexandru "stalagmita"​ C.: I'm pretty sure there's still at least 5 years in which a normal midstakes grinder can make a decent living from online poker. Any sane poker player should look into career alternatives during this time and allocate some time in developing other skills besides playing cards well.

vherreral's picture
Is he trafinoglu?

Is he trafinoglu?


stalagmita's picture
nah, dude; i'm buddies with

nah, dude; i'm buddies with trafi tho. a real gent !

wtf hu ?

vherreral's picture
If not trafi, then it's

If not trafi, then it's couperdubois? or maybe pishtashmek? or maybe even callmoisnake?


stalagmita's picture
nope. it's a somewhat

nope. it's a somewhat tightly-knit community for romanian husng players and we all know each other; i jumped into the hyper hu bandwagon some years ago tho; used to play as "alikul" on ps.fr, and some other names on euronetworks. do you have a message for those fuckers ?

wtf hu ?

vherreral's picture
hehe, that was the one name i

hehe, that was the one name i was missing, weird they all haven't got full in2 spins yet.