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Poker gave this Okielifetime of memories

Sep 11, 2007 1:20 AM

Carol, I want to write a series of columns about the great players of the past that I have had the opportunity to play poker with in my lifetime.

Most of the poker players will be well-known to you folks and the poker players of the world, but a few will just be my poker buddies — Ralph, Ron, Don, Bill, Joe, Vera, Oklahoma Bob, Baby Jane, The Italian Stallion and a few rail birds that could never seem to get into the game.

The list includes a few movie stars and TV people like Mike Sexton, Steve Lipscomb, Lyle Berman, Gabe Kaplan, James Garner and Wilfred Brimley.

It would take too long to name them all, so at the beginning of each article I will just name a few.

Today’s baker’s dozen or so of the world’s greatest players that I have played with include: My father G.N. Hale, Doyle Brunson, Bobby Baldwin, Bill Boyd, Benny Binion, Amarillo Slim, Johnny Moss, Puggy Pearson, Tom McEvoy, Jack Keller, Cowboy Wolford, Jesse Alto, and Hans Tuna Lund.

If you folks, have a favorite poker player that you would like for me to write about just send in the request to [email protected] and the chances are really good that I have played a few hands with him or her.

The Big 8-Oh!

I must tell you that I have been playing poker for over 70 years and I’ve invited a lot of these world famous poker players to my 80th birthday poker party, hosted by Kathy Raymond, Director of Poker Operations at the Venetian poker room in Las Vegas, Sept. 28-30.

I have kissed the Blarney Stone, have a license to tell tall tales and embellish a story. I promise you at least 97 percent of everything I tell you about playing with these players will be true. I may have to protect the guilty on occasion. My father taught me never to speak ill about a poker player, who is playing that big game in the sky.

During World War II, I was in the United States Navy playing with the old sea salts and beach bums of San Diego. Too young to drink in the bars, I was old enough to die for my country and able to play poker on the beach wearing my uniform.

I began playing poker when I was very young. My father was the greatest poker player that I have ever played with. I was the last of seven boys and got to spend a lot of time with him. We fished, hunted and played poker. G.N. taught me about life and the

living of it, along with poker and the playing of it.

Granville Newton Hale was the creator of the first ever poker tournament. It was called Depression Poker. (No time to retell this story now, but you’ll find it in the archives of GamingToday).

I do not remember any of the exact hands, but I recall the methods of play that G.N. Hale used when he played poker. Some of the secrets he taught me about the values of life along with the correct things to do in poker and life will always be remembered.

If you are a loser and your life is not going as well as you would like, think on this list of instructions my dad taught me.

”¡ Always love and take care of your mother.

”¡ Don’t lie.

”¡ Money is not heavy to carry.

”¡ Don’t make people mad at you.

”¡ Be clean.

”¡ Raise the pot at every opportunity.

”¡ Don’t borrow money in a poker game.

More GN gems

”¡ Buy low and sell high.

”¡ Help push the wagon, don’t just ride in it.

”¡ If you cannot sell it for $10, take $9.

”¡ Don’t step on the little people.

”¡ Do the right thing every time.

”¡ Like yourself.

”¡ If you make a mistake, fix it.

”¡ Be a peacemaker.

”¡ Carry your end of the load.

”¡ If you give something away, forget about it

”¡. Don’t put your dirt in someone else’s hole.

”¡ Be good to the cook.

OK-J Poker
Tip of the Week

From the book Fundamentals of Poker, written by Mason Malmuth

and Lynne Loomis.

"Bet Most All of Your Draws!"

Suppose you have two suited cards and two more of your suit come in the three card flop, creating a flush draw. You should almost always bet this hand. Even though your flush draw currently has no value, betting gives you two ways to win the pot.

First, everyone might fold immediately. Second, the flush card might come and you will win anyway.

Thanks MM and LL for this very useful poker tip!

Until next time always remember to stay lucky.