For those of you not yet familiar with the ID: LURPED I hope this interview is educational. He once was a Starcraft:BroodWar player known under the ID: Proct who played protoss and was most known for inventing the strategy called "The Stove" (A type of rush against a terran opponent where you go scouts first, then switch to DT, then mass arbiters and stasis them). Does this ring a bell for anyone? Anyways, to make a long story short, he now is a poker professional and here is more about him:
Name / Age / Location / Poker ID and why you chose it?
Markus Gonsalves, 21 from San Diego, CA. Poker ID: LURPED, It’s a word that everyone in my fraternity used to use. Like if someone hooked up with the girl you liked “YOU GOT LURPED”.
Let’s get a brief run down of what you currently play right now, and some of your biggest accomplishments in poker.
I mostly play $3/$6 and $5/$10 no limit, but I have started to dabble in $10/$20 when the games are good. I play all the big tournaments on all sites. My biggest accomplishment was 5th at the EPT in Copenhagen.
What is your history in gaming? What type of strategy games were you into before poker? How was your success in those?
I used to play Starcraft, and did farely well. I won some computers and stuff, but nothing near what I’ve accomplished in poker.
When and what started you off in playing poker?
I started playing poker for play money on pokerpages.com for fun with friends then moved to pokerstars, deposited $50 and haven’t looked back since.
How was your early experiences in learning how to play poker? What tools did you use to enhance your learning? Where did you play to learn?
Poker was very frustrating at first because all my friends were a lot better than me. I remember I was playing .25/.50 and rekrul was up to 1/2 and I thought he was the MASTER (LOL). I learned a lot through other Starcraft players, and still discuss strategy with them all the time.
When did you realize you could make some real money playing poker? What factors / skills / attributes got you to that level? Did you have any help along the way?
I was going to school and working a job, which didn’t pay anything. I was making more money playing poker part-time than I was at my job. So decided to take a shot and quit my job and focus on poker fulltime. Shortly after I quit school too! =o
Has there ever been a time when things just weren’t going right for you while playing poker? What was your worst run ever and what did you do to get through these times?
I still run bad all the time, everyone does. It’s the most frustrating thing in the world when u know you are playing your “A” game and still can’t win. My worst run I lost half my bankroll in a month and wanted to jump off a cliff.
Let’s get into detail about your biggest accomplishment. How was the experience? What did you get out of it?
My biggest accomplishment was at EPT Copenhagen. I qualified for my seat online in one of those $300 satelites. At first I was nervous but after the first 2 hours, my confidence kept growing. I kept telling myself that I was just as good as any of these guys, and I can play with any of them. I was top 10 in chips till the final day where I lost AA vs KK allin preflop for the chiplead. I’ve never been so rattled in my life. So with 30 left I was the shortstack and top 27 cash. Thank GOD there was a break right after that hand, I pounded a beer and tried to regroup myself. I grinded the short stack the whole way then called Chris Johansons allin SB vs BB with Q4o and he had J7 with 12 left that got me some chips. I got to the final table, got aces 3 times but never got action, and other than that I was card dead. Finally I lost a race at the end with A8 vs 66, and went out in 5th. [ The EPT Copenhagen Final Table Report can be found here: http://www.pokerstarsblog.com/2006/01/copenhagen-ept-final-table-report.html ]
Who is your favorite professional poker player and why?
Thorladen the guy is my hero. I just recently met him in person and sat behind him while he played some cash games. The man simply doesn’t make any mistakes. I’ve never seen anyone be able to get the max value out of all his pots, and have the ability to make people lay down big hands. His style is very creative, and that's why he's my favorite. He’s also the #1 ranked bridge player in the world. He’s also a very classy guy If you’ve ever met him, he doesn’t get angry and is always amusing at the table.
The online world has great players that are not as well known as some of the professionals that get TV time. Are there any online players that you’ve played with that you consider to be real good? Can you name a few, and why?
There are so many great online players out there but to name a few: Rekrul, Nazgul, RaSZi, H@LLINGOL, Check_Kills, ThorLaden, Premier, ElkY, PBDrunks, SamEnole. So many more than I can’t even name. I honestly believe that the average online player is 3x the average live player.
What are some tips and tricks you can give out to the readers that might improve there games / build a bankroll? What do you suggest is the best ways to improve?
Bankroll management is the most important thing to becoming a professional poker player. If you don’t have this skill or cant learn this skill you should quit now. It will save you so much stress and heart ache. Poker is all experience, the more you have the better you will be.
Any final words?
Shout-outs to anyone?
To my team: RASZI, H@LLINGOL, PBDRUNKS, CHECK_KILLS, PREMIER, SAMENOLE, BET2WIN, AND LURPED! GO TEAM GO! We’re gonna own the WSOP this year watch out =]
Yes, that is Scotty Nyugen and Markus to the far right
Markus with fellow pros Jennifer "Jennicide" Leigh and Evelyn Ng... "West Side?"
70's Party at LURPED's pad. From left to right: RaSZi, LURPED, IceTea, check_kills
Doesn't get better than online poker on a sofa! From left to right: PBDrunks, H@££INGGOL, and LURPED
Some top-notch online poker pros at Beverly Hills. From left to right: IceTea, VeronicaO, Check_Kills, PBDrunks, ZeeJustin, H@££INGGOL, and LURPED
When all goes bad, pound some liquior and everything will be fine.
At the Final Table of EPT Copenhagen
PokerStars ID: LURPED
MySpace Link: www.myspace.com/lurped