Pokerwinner's John Adderley (Bottom left) final table photo taken prior to his £97k scope in GUKPT Manchester
Online Poker boomed during the global pandemic bringing hundreds of thousands of new players into the game during the lock downs and even now most countries have once again opened their doors the surge in interest remains incredibly strong both online and perhaps even more so on the live scene with operators using the increased interest to launch more live tours than ever before.
I'm often asked which is most profitable - to focus live or online? The answer I always give is that the two are not mutually exclusive and it's actually a healthy mix which will provide the best roadmap to maximise your EV overall, assuming you wish to fight on both fronts.
There is no denying that live games are softer. I would go as far as say that a £1k game live probably plays to about the same level of ability as a £30 game online, so there's clearly huge opportunities if you can take your 50% ROI at that level online which would normally net you £15 and instead earn EV of £500 from the £1k game.
That seemingly huge disparity however doesn't tell the full story given online you would play with essentially zero overheads (except your internet connection) and likely play 20 - 30 games per night, while Live MTTs require travel, accommodation, food, drinks etc and are often played out over 3-4 days spreading the timeframe for earning that £500 EV over a far longer period where you're not able to play online and earn your usual EV.
As a live pro, I have no doubt it's easier to potentially win the life-changing scores, but you need an extremely deep bankroll and to be prepared for potentially long downswings and all the mental challenges that come with this as it could be years of being able to fund yourself and persevere with regular live MTTs before you get through the variance and bank your edge.
In truth the best mix is undoubtedly to play primarily online as a foundation, while building your skills and competencies to take regular live opportunities as they occur which is the model we employ at Pokerwinners. Our players must play 300+ online MTTs per month as a foundation to be able to then access live opportunities in addition to this volume. This cushions the variance, ensures that the right balance is found so that the lost opportunity cost is not too severe, and most of all, allows you HUGE benefits over those that just play live in terms of your ability to understand the game to a high level.
There's no live player in the world that can play the volume of hands you play online so your learning process is far faster online especially when you can take advantage of tools, software, solvers and coaching on a daily basis in order to best understand every intricate detail and mechanic that a live player would have little chance of understanding.
We also are extremely careful not to take the transition between online poker and live poker for granted because there are some extremely key differences which need to be understood to a very high level to ensure that the transition is successful. Each of our players works through our internal training programmes to prepare for live games to better understand the tells that villains give off unconsciously that we can exploit in game, while working hard to mask our own tells and tendencies and approach the live games fully focused to avoid distraction and maximize the opportunities available.
It's not uncommon for villains to literally tell you exactly what they have with the right framework so this combined with the fact our technical knowledge far exceeds that of 99.9% of poker players means you'll have everything you need to succeed and put yourself in the box seat to capitalise on the huge value available within the live game right now.