Tom Dwan is back. The former high stakes online poker phenom, who later cemented his name as a main stream poker super star by crushing the opposition on both High Stakes Poker and Poker After Dark, spoke to us about what he’s been up to, and his excitement to return to the bright lights of televised poker.
“I just landed on a flight from Manila,” Dwan said, taking our call from the airport on his way to Las Vegas for Poker After Dark.
The man known as ‘durrrr’ will play in the $100,000 buy-in $200/$400 No Limit Hold’em cash game on Monday when Poker After Dark goes live exclusively on PokerGO. The lineup on Monday consists of Daniel Negreanu, Antonio Esfandiari, Lauren Roberts, Bill Klein and Jean-Robert Bellande. Dwan also plays on Tuesday and Wednesday, when Andrew Robl and Doyle Brunson take the Negreanu and Esfandiari seats.
About his absence from the North-American poker scene, Dwan said, “I’ve been playing a lot in Macau because the games are a lot bigger. Since a lot of the online sites got shut down, there were a lot of pros competing for less and less spots in big live games, and the games were less good, smaller and at the same time Macau was exploding.”
“The games there are really big and if you win it’s fun” Dwan laughed, “But it’s tough when you’re losing.”
“If you lose in a game in Vegas there’s probably the same size games around to win it back if you lose in Macau or Manila the only way to win the money back is by playing in Macau and Manila.”
Getting into the Macau Games
Dwan’s excited to play on Poker After Dark, “People always ask me about Poker After Dark and High Stakes Poker. Those shows were just done a little different. There was better banter, better poker, and everyone liked watching them more.”
There was, however, a period in which Dwan thought that his play – and his success – on the big televised cash games would hurt his action in Asia, but the opposite proved to be true.
“It’s funny, I actually thought that having played all the shows would’ve hurt my chances.”
“When I was first there and the games got really big, I was a bit sad I had played all the shows because I thought that I would make less money there and get into fewer games.”
“Over time I’ve realized that there has been a significant amount of games that I was able to get into because I played on the TV shows. So, it was almost the opposite, but maybe that was just because I won every hand. If I had lost every time it might’ve been different,” Dwan explained how his success on TV grew his status as a player and someone people wanted to go up against.
“While I won every hand on the TV shows for a while, I lost every hand in Macau for a while, and I think that’s also why people like to play against me. They see me do good on TV, and then lose every day in Macau,” Dwan laughed about his fortunes during his early days in the Macau games.
That Dwan had fun on Poker After Dark goes without saying, as he did very well in the cash games that were hosted in the later seasons of the show, “The shows were fun, they ended up being more interesting and more fun than I expected. It also helped that I won basically every hand that I played. If I called, they were bluffing, if I was bluffing they folded. I’m hoping that continues,” Dwan joked.
About the upcoming days of high stakes cash game action on PokerGO, Dwan added “I’m just going to try and win everyone’s money!”
Poker After Dark returns on Monday August 14th for three days of high stakes cash game action, exclusively on PokerGO. Until then, catch up with a library of past season now available on demand.