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 T.J.'s Appearance

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PostSubject: T.J.'s Appearance   Sat Mar 01, 2008 8:28 pm

Internet Poker Radio Online Show Transcript

T.J. Cloutier Interview Highlights 8-18-07
visit www.pokerpages.com and www.pokerschoolonline.com

PPH: What are some of the longer streaks you've gone on? Whether they're winning or losing?

CLOUTIER: The longest I've gone without winning a tournament is right now. It's been 20 years and it's been a little over a year since I won one. They say that if you play millions of hands the cards are gonna break even. And you know the percentages of all the hands and all that stuff. But, you've gotta realize one thing -- it's over millions of hands. And it might go a couple hundred thousand hands before they do break even. And then it might happen a couple three or four times in a row and then they go another couple hundred thousand. So, you've gotta be prepared for all this. And the whole idea is when you're running bad -- don't make it even worse by playing bad. Don't panic.

PPH: You're one of the guys that when I watch you crack me up. And I say that in a respectful way. These guys chase you down and they smoke you on a hand. And you say, "Oh, well. Good game. Good luck guys." and then you walk away.

CLOUTIER: You've gotta learn to live with that stuff. And if you can't -- then you're in the wrong profession. Or you're doing the wrong thing. Because you have to ride the good streaks and you have to ride the bad streaks. And that's all part of it. I never want to show my ass in public, okay. I'm gonna be a gentleman from the word "Go" at all times. You don't gain anything by it. All you gain by being an idiot is maybe a little more tv time. But overall, I get more compliments for demeanor than I do for play. Now, when I'm at home and I'm on the computer (playing poker) my wife has to go to the other side of the house cause I let it out. But I'm not gonna do it in public.

PPH: What's the worst thing you've done to your computer?

CLOUTIER: I haven't thrown it but I wanted to.

PPH: From what I've seen on tv I've seen that you muck pocket pairs a lot in early position. I've seen that from early position you'll just throw away pocket 5s, pocket 6s, pocket 7s -- something like that. Are those cards that if you discard in early or late position -- it can help you from running bad?

CLOUTIER: That's part of it. The main thing is. In early position if you've got a small pair or AJ or A10 or something like that -- I have a rule -- if you cannot raise or cannot stand a raise -- then don't play the hand. And in tournament poker -- that will do you very good. You've gotta understand if you've got two 5s and you bring in, you limp in then throw it away -- you've lost that money. If you call the raise, there's a pretty good chance you're a 4 1/2 to 1 dog or you're an 11 to 10 favorite. But you only -- 7 6 is only an 11 to 10 dog to you. So, you've gotta think about things like that. And every one of those chips that you throw away on these -- what I call marginal hands or trap hands -- are chips that when you really have a hand you could double or triple up on someone with -- that's the difference between you winning or losing the tournament sometimes. I'll sit around in middle or early late position -- somebody raises in front of me or something and I'll throw away 5s or 6s all day long. And then all of the sudden I'll say (to myself) I think I'm gonna get odds on this pot with all these players this time -- and it's amazing how that one time all of the sudden you flop a set. That's just timing.

PPH: When you go out to the World Series of Poker or some other tournament -- what's your lifestyle like? How much sleep do you get? Do you try to lead a normal life during the tournament?

CLOUTIER: Ya. A lot of people play a lot of live action when they're out. And they burn the candle at both ends. I don't do that. I used to play live for 17 years. That was all I played. I was very successful at it. But I don't enjoy it when I'm playing in a tournament because it's a whole different ball game.

PPH: What are some of the hands that you either love or hate?

CLOUTIER: I hate AK but it doesn't mean I won't play it. It's just that I hardly ever flop to it. And the hand they call "TJ" is J9 of clubs. Because three times in one year I flopped a straight flush to it. I've gone three or four hours in a lot of poker tournaments where I never held as much as a pair of 6s. But I made it a point that I would have more money in front of me at each break than I did at the last one -- which is my way of playing tournaments. And what I would do was steal in the right position and stuff like that. And I don't steal blinds -- I steal pots. There's a (big) difference. Some guy's being real aggressive in a hand and you come over the top. You never re-raise a fool but you re-raise a player. And they'll throw their hand away. Now, you've won their chips plus the antes. So, now you've got enough for 2, 3 or 4 rounds at the table without having to catch a hand. So, it's not exactly a bad thing to do once in a while when you're not exactly holding the deck.

PPH: When I'm going bad (in tourneys) I'll just pull a couple of your books out and re-read them and it kinda un-tilts me a little bit. There were a lot of hands I used to really like -- KJ, QJ suited and I used to enter pots early. And all the sudden a guy would re-raise me and of course I would call him and of course the King flops and I'm outkicked, etcetera, etcetera.

CLOUTIER: Those are what I call "Trap hands."

PPH: And you really really helped me with that.

CLOUTIER: I categorize all the players -- whether they're "aggressive," "super-aggressive," "solid," "tight" and I just watch what they've been doing. I never shy away from one player or attack any one player at one table. I've found -- you're doing that -- can get you in a lot of trouble. But the main thing is -- if you're playing with somebody new -- just play quality hands. The biggest difference between me and a guy like Phil Hellmuth when I sit down to a new table is -- I give credit to everybody for knowing how to play the game. When Phil sits down he doesn't give anybody credit for knowing how to play -- but himself. And that's why he starts having trouble when he starts playing against better players. But overall, it's worked for me -- until they prove they can't play. Then I'll play situational poker with them and stuff like that. But you adjust your game to who you're playing with. You've gotta realize that in any tournament you play at -- all you can control is the table you're on. All these people that get up from their table and look at other tables and how many chips they have -- it's ridiculous. It doesn't mean a thing. It's who has the chips at the end of the tournament that counts.

PPH: I see so many players sit down to a tournament and try to win it in the first couple hours.

CLOUTIER: That's so true. I say, you can't win a three or four day tournament on the first day but you can lose it. Why be in a hurry? Let the cards dictate what you're gonna play.

PPH: I play these 9 seater sit-no-gos all day long. And the day I learned patience was the day I became twice the poker player years ago.

CLOUTIER: Of course. You just play tight in those things and unless you get drawn out on you're gonna make the money. And then you try to win it. Let the other guys make the mistakes. And remember one thing about online play. When you're sitting at a brick & mortar table you might raise three or four times the big blind with a hand. Online you can raise a lot more. Because they'll call it. And when you raise -- you want to get called. You know that poker is so much common sense that it's outta this world.

PPH: When did you play your first poker online?

CLOUTIER: I'd say about three years ago.

PPH: You've got a poker school online?

CLOUTIER: Yes. You just dial up on your computer pokerschoolonline.com . And it has different levels -- beginner, intermediate and advanced. And you can actually get on for as cheap as 15 dollars a month. I can't see anything that's any better.

PPH: How big of a role do you play in it?

CLOUTIER: I give quizzes and blogs and lessons. The whole works -- I'm completely involved in it. It's geared toward everybody. I always say "read all the books and get all the dvds and do anything you can do to improve your game."

PPH: What's your best advice for some of these younger players out there?

CLOUTIER: Just what I said before -- be very observant at the table. That's the best thing. You've gotta know what the other guys are gonna do before they do it and most of the time you can do that.

T.J. Cloutier Interview Highlights 8-18-07
visit www.pokerschoolonline.com and www.pokerpages.com
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PostSubject: TJ plays loose and crazy   Thu Mar 06, 2008 3:44 pm

I seen this dude play fast and loose online a few times. I seen him at the WSOP and he shows no emotion. I think TJ is a robot with no feelings which is good for poker players. pirat
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