Phil Gordon's Little Green Book : Lessons and Teachings in No Limit Texas Hold'em
Phil Gordon plays poker with the best players in the world. He has won -- and lost -- in tournaments and cash games around the globe, all the while studying the game and learning from every hand dealt. As the resident expert and co-host of Celebrity Poker Showdown, Phil has quickly become one of the most sought-after teachers of No Limit Texas Hold'em.
After fifteen years of keeping notes on the things he's learned, the greats he's played with, and the celebrities he's taught, Phil Gordon has poured every single thing he knows about No Limit Texas Hold'em into this little green book. Taking a page from Harvey Penick's bestselling book of golf wisdom, Phil plays the role of both teacher and student, offering up insightful tips on how to think about poker and how to develop a singular style of play. He breaks down the game into enlightening instructional tidbits and illustrative anecdotes that inspire the kind of persistence and motivation necessary to improve your game.
Sure to rank with Doyle Brunson's Super System, and David Sklansky's The Theory of Poker, Phil Gordon's Little Green Book deserves a spot on the shelf of every serious student of the game.
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October 03, 2005
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Excerpt from Phil Gordon's Little Green Book by Phil Gordon
No Limit Hold'em is a very tough game. That's the bad news. But here is some good news: You can learn. How do I know you can learn? Because I was not always a winning player, and I learned. If I can go from "dead money" to World Poker Tour champion, there is no doubt that others can as well.
The greatest poker players in the world share five qualities:
1. They are invariably aggressive. Aggressive poker is winning poker. They apply pressure to their opponents with bets and raises.
2. They are patient. They wait for situations at the table that are profitable.
3. They are courageous. They don't need the stone-cold nuts to bet, call, or raise.
4. They are observant. They watch their opponents during every hand.
5. They are always working on their game and want to be even better players. They talk about the game with other players. They practice. They read poker books. They analyze their play and work to plug "leaks" that have developed.
These five qualities are all that are necessary to be a great, winning player. The first four qualities you can learn and develop. You already have the fifth quality -- you bought this book so you're working on your game.
There are many ways to win at this game. I intend in this book to write exactly how I play. You may disagree with many of the plays that I recommend here. Good. I want you to approach this book not as a definitive guide for how to play, but as a catalyst for thinking about the game.
In short, the following pages are, to the best of my ability, how I play No Limit Texas Hold'em. I'm not the best player in the world. But I'm a winning player, and I win playing exactly the style that is described here.
Throughout my poker education I have read nearly every book on poker ever written. I owe a great deal to the poker authors that have come before me. Sklansky. Brunson. Cloutier. McEvoy. Malmuth. Cooke. Harrington. Caro. Without their work I wouldn't be the player that I am today. Most of the things I know about the game I owe to these authors.
Harvey Penick, arguably the greatest golf teacher that ever lived, wrote a great book, Harvey Penick's Little Red Book. In that book he recorded his thoughts and musings on the game of golf. Not once in his book did he profess to know the only way to play. I drew inspiration from Mr. Penick's book and his straightforward approach to teaching a very difficult game.
Take your time with this book. No matter how thoroughly you digest the contents, you'll need to play thousands of hands against all kinds of competition before things will really "click" for you. Take your time. Your bankroll will not be built overnight. Grow it slowly. There will be setbacks. There will be bad beats. But, there will be endless amounts of joy as your game improves.