Poker Styles of Play

Poker Pros' Playing Styles

Here four poker pros discuss different playing styles, including how each came to adopt his or her own. The conversation includes EPT winner Arnaud Mattern, Olympian-turned-poker player Fatima Moreira de Melo, online phenom Lex Veldhuis, and mixed-game superstar Ville Wahlbeck.

The group starts out noting that for beginners a tight style -- playing 'ABC poker' -- is probably recommended, although eventually players evolve and many begin to incorporate other moves as they create their own, unique approach.

As Veldhuis notes, each player's style generally has something to do with his or her personality away from the tables. That is, if you're conservative in general, you're probably going to adopt a conservative playing style. Or if you're more apt to take risks, you'll do so in your play, too.

The players additionally point out how they all further shaped their styles from talking to or watching other players. Watching the wild, aggressive play of Gus Hansen, for example, inspired Veldhuis to mix up his game. Mattern also notes how watching Phil Ivey -- especially his intense concentration at the tables -- influenced him to play with greater focus.
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