Monday, May 19, 2014

'Isildur1' Viktor Blom playing style


"I deposited $2,000 and within three weeks I had $2 million."

Large bet bluffs and reraise bluffs are all part of the playing style that he has perfected.

- He knows when to hold'em and when to fold'em.
- He puts his opponents to a decision for all of their chips.
- His continuation bet size is excellent, wagering bout 350 into most pots.
- His signature fatality is arrrr-in on the river with an overbet.
- People conjecture that he has been staked by that overweight neanderthal slob Tony G.

His hyper aggressive style is highly lucrative but is major leak is his complete absense of bankroll management.


Blom won and lost fortunes during a 13-month span between 2009 and 2010. Below is a look at the roller coaster swings during that time.

Oct. ʼ09: $-989.48K
Nov. ʼ09: $1.32M
Dec. ʼ09: $-2.22M
Jan. ʼ10: $0
Feb. ʼ10: $199.82K
Mar. ʼ10: $225.17K
Apr. ʼ10: $156.52K
May ʼ10: $-42.63K
Jun. ʼ10: $-249.1K
Jul-Aug. ʼ10: $0
Sept. ʼ10: $-214.1K
Oct. ʼ10: $-414.05K
Balance: $-2,227,850
* data from
...nine-tabling $500/1000 against Dwan, Ivey, and Antonius all at the same time????  The guy is plain crazy!

The style used by Viktor Blom is not one that many players would follow. In fact it has been described as reckless by most people. He often makes large bets even when he has nothing. He frequently plays multi table games when he is online and he is hyper aggressive. This has resulted in some really wild swings in his fortunes. After initially breaking onto the scene by winning a million dollars in a few weeks he managed to lose three million in one game. These swings have occurred because most of the professional players are smart enough to not fall for his bluffs.

'Isildur1' Viktor Blom is most likely the most thrilling poker player ever.  But his playing style and, worst of all, his bankroll management are not one to emulate.  You should model yourself on an equally aggressive but wiser player like Phil Ivey.  The point here, is to be a long-term winning player.  Not a rollercaster skydiver kamikaze. 

Nonetheless, my hat off to Viktor Blom.  He is an amazing player with tons of raw talent and an unseen willingness to face the best of the bests at the same time at the highest stakes possible.  A 1-on-3 handicap match.

Poker Grinder


word type: poker slang

  1. Poker player who plays in games they're significantly over-bankrolled for while also playing a style of poker that leads to consistent and steady win rates.

* definition of 'grinder', taken from "Grinderschool" training site

grinder (n) a professional poker player who earns a living through small but consistent winnings (See also: rounder)

I think of a grinder as a player who--
1) puts in great volume,
2) has a positive win rate,
3) thinks systematically about the game and tries to improve as they play,
4) plays within their bankroll.

Grinders rarely "take shots" and money does not come pouring on them, but nor do they lose it easily. They accumulate capital slowly, but steadily and securely.

Grinders rarely take shots because grinders don't take alot of risks. Grinders look for maximum gain for the least amount of risk...

a grinder is a player who understands that solid play + volume > short term variance.

He just keeps putting in hour after hour, day after day, month after month until he looks up at the end of the year and sees a significant profit.

Understanding the math and playing solid poker according to the math will always win in the long run regardless of the short term results. I like these two mostly.

Where You Can Find Grinders

Actually, you can find grinders in almost all types of poker in the lower and middle limits. You typically don't find a "grinder" per se at the nosebleed stakes. Most grinders will multi-table to the tune of eight or more simultaneous tables, oftentimes of identical game types and limits. For instance, a Sit and Go grinder might play eight tables at a time of $25 turbo 9-person Sit and Goes. Considering that 10% (after rake) is a great ROI for a Sit and Go player, that means that the player is only making $2.50 per sit and go. But if they can squeeze in 20 sit and goes in an hour, then they're "grinding" a $50 per hour win rate. By contrast, if that same player decided to go play a $200 Sit and Go, then they're now "off their grind" and taking a "shot" at a higher game.

You Should Also Know...

While some grinders do play almost exclusively large, multi-table tournaments, these people are a very rare breed. The goal in a large tournament is to make a big score, to win a sum of money that can sustain you until the next sizeable take. Some people are able to win small to medium prizes on a fairly consistent basis, but in general, grinders don't specialize in multi-table tournaments because luck can swing one's results too quickly in them and they take too long to make smaller wins worth the time.
Additionally, online players can earn rakeback to increase their hourly rate, and some online poker rooms only offer rakeback for cash games.

In Film - Rounders

The terms "grind" and "grinder" are featured in the opening monologue of the popular poker film, Rounders.

Guys around here'll tell ya... you play for a living.
It's like any other job. You don't gamble. You grind it out.
Your goal is to win one big bet an hour, that's it.
Get your money in when you have the best of it, and protect it when you don't.
Don't give anything away.
That's how I've paid my way through half of law school.
A true grinder.
See, I learned how to win a little at a time. But finally, I've learned this...
If you're too careful, your whole life can become a fuckin' grind

The Gambler - Kenny Rogers

You've got to know when to hold 'em
Know when to fold 'em
Know when to walk away
'Cause every hand's a winner And every hand's a loser