Full-Ring Friends Series: TYJohnRambo

Tell me a bit about your poker story, how you came to be involved in online poker and what made you choose full-ring no limit games.
Well, my story is a long one, and I’m older than most of you guys so bare with me on this ride. I started playing live around 1997 before I turned 21. Visited the Indian casinos where you only had to be 18 so never ran into any issues there. Started off playing 2-4 limit and quickly ran up to 6-12 where I stayed for about a year or so. Once I hit 21 I started going to the commerce casino and bicycle club pretty frequently. This is where I got seriously into poker and aside from sports betting poker became my main source of income. I jumped into the 15-30 and 20-40 games very early on and did quite well. My bankroll was growing and I was able to purchase a house at a very young age. After hanging around a couple years at those limits I gave 40-80 a try and OMG that was the juiciest game you could imagine. Granted I was 22-23 at the time I was getting paid off a lot because I was obviously the youngest one at the table. Old people didn’t respect younger players then and if you play live, they still don’t. Anyways, I eventually stopped playing poker around 2002-2003 and spent a lot of time in Vegas doing sports, craps, degening it up basically. Then to my surprise they started spreading NLHE!!! I was very shocked at this and once again had a reason to play poker and had fun at it too. And to all you youngins out there, yes, there was time when NLHE was not being dealt in casinos and it was not a popular game.

So anyways, that’s my live experience and now onto my online career. I started out in the days of party poker somewhere around 03. I used to 1-2 table 5/10 nl and also play some 30/60 lhe. Games were crazy soft back then and if you knew how to play ABC poker you were making some good money. I built my bankroll pretty decently at this time but ran into some huge sports betting issues which forced me to cash out and stop playing for a while, and then I started back up on ftp in 2005. I started playing 6 tables under the screen name ExpediaDOTcom, maybe some of you remember me , but anyways, I think I won about 6k in 2 months playing there and also wound up cashing out and going back to live.

Now here comes the story about why I play 60bbs and why I don’t buy in deep. My bread and butter game prior to 2006 was the 400NL buy-in game at commerce. The blinds were 5/10 and wow…… only 40bbs max buy in. action was crazy and top pair top kicker = the nuts. I excelled in this game and was forced to learn how to read players or go broke. You cannot just sit at this game and wait for a hand and you are forced to make decisions for your entire stack all the time. Anyways, I won’t go into detail as to why 60bbs is great for online, but there you have it. This is why I do it.

Anyways, now onto my current career in online poker on pokerstars. I am a video game fanatic and played competitive “street fighter” since I was 15. I was once considered the best player in the USA and played on 5 team USA vs. team Japan battles over the years. (I’ll explain further in the next question regarding my 2p2 SN) so I met hevad khan from our gaming community and as all degens, hevad and I would bet hundreds of dollars on matches played of this video game. Then all of sudden hevad made an awesome run at the WSOP and made the final table in 2007. This is when I made a deposit of $500 and never looked back. I started playing 1 table of 5/10 where a player by the name of kardius doubled me up and my online bankroll took off from there. I used play 9 tables of 2/4 and a bit of 3/6 until I hit a small downswing. Since I’m constantly withdrawing money to take care of my bills and overhead, I don’t keep a huge sum of money online and I decided to take a shot at the 1/2 game. What a goldmine and the best decision I have ever made. I quickly learned how to play 20 tables and with rakeback included, I was making the same amount at a lower limit with much less variance.

Why did you choose srkbigdaddy as your 2+2 screen name and TYJohnRambo on PokerStars?
I chose the name srkbigdaddy because of a website that is based around the streetfighter game community. It is called (shoryuken = dragon punch which is a special move in the game) and is known as srk for short. My name on stars came about in a pretty funny manner actually. My buddies and I got into a stupid habit of saying TY this and TY that so one night we were at the movies and some idiots were asking for trouble. After some jawing and what not I just grabbed the dude and slammed him right onto the Rambo 4 poster and my homie yelled “Thank You John Rambo” and it kind of stuck.

What are some of your goals for 2009? Both poker and non-poker.
My goals for poker are to get my win rate back up to 3bb/100. Last year I started playing way too many tables and although my rakeback was flourishing, my WR went to hell. Outside of poker I’m hoping to keep grinding out nursing school so I can eventually open up a retirement home and make a ton of cash!

What are your interests outside of poker?
I actually still like to play fighting games, watch a ton of sports, and unfortunately I love craps

I’m sure you’ve addressed this before, but what is the thought process behind the 60 big blind buy-in strategy?
Force opponent to call with a hand they normally wouldn’t for 100bbs, piss off the regs who think full-buy is the only way to play, and less variance.

You are pretty well known on 2+2 for your rants in the PokerStars regular’s thread. How much of what you post is for show and how much is legitimate anger and ill-feeling towards the world?
I can honestly say I just talk mad **** online to people that deserve it. I know for a fact that my trash talk has taken players out of their normal play at the tables and caused spew so I find it +EV for the fact I make money from it, and also for the fact that some people seriously need a reality check when talking smack behind a keyboard. The world isn’t that big and you never know who you’ll run into.

Is there anyone that you respect too much to go after? Is there anyone that you trash talk that you secretly respect?
I respect a handful of players on 2p2 who I no longer play with, and directly coming to mind are tooeazy and pattay. I played with tooeazy when I was at the higher limits and thanks to him I found this forum. I also played with pattay and used to chat with him once in a while when I moved down to 1/2. As far as secretly respecting anyone……. naw, if I trash talk you, you’re an idiot and deserve it. There is no hidden respect there.

What were some of the major breakthroughs and leaks that you have plugged in order to get the point of playing solid winning poker?
I think a major leak I plugged was finding out who’s 3-betting me light and forcing the action more often. At first I was a bit overwhelmed by the mass tabling but now that I have adapted, my game and reactions too many situations have changed as well. I also think I have a great strat vs these 20bbs guys that spare me from wasting time and basically I’m the one doing the shoving vs. those clowns now, so HA.

What are the best and worst aspects of being a poker player?
Best aspects are obviously freedom of work schedule and making much more than your typical 9 to 5. The worst aspect is spending so much time in front of a computer and going through a ton of stress.

What do your family (both immediate and extended) think of your poker playing?
My wife hated it at first but can’t complain about all the gifts I buy her and the excess money we have to spend freely so I doubt I hear anymore from her. My mother doesn’t mind as long as I don’t get too wrapped up where I can’t come visit her or spend time with her. As far as anyone else, I keep it pretty hush hush about how I make a living.

What kind of reactions do you get from people outside of poker when you tell them that you play? What are some of the funniest, ill-conceived, tilt inducing and fishiest responses that you get?
People claim it’s rigged all the time and I usually don’t talk about poker with anyone aside from people that actually play.

As a PokerStars Supernova VIP what changes do you think could be made to the VIP program to improve it?
I actually feel as though the VIP program is very generous. I never enter tourneys anymore so that once a week donkament is kind of cool. Value wise it’s not great, but hey, it’s free, so who cares.

Quick Quiz – Of All 2+2 SS Full Ring and PokerStars $100nl-$400nl full-ring regulars
Best avatar?
biggieliveson when he was sporting that **** thing was hilarious but im gonna have to be conceited and say mine!

Best strategy poster?
I don’t read the forums for strat so i cant really answer that, sorry

Best trash talker?
Aside from myself I will go ahead an say jack-frost is pretty good and kelistaan when he was around.

Best 24-tabler?
Yadameen has a great win rate and made sne and from my experieces playing with him, he gets my vote.


Speedle and ranka both have a weird sense of humor but I laugh at both of their posts so its a split decision here.

Learning curve obviously and it’s not even close.


Most under-rated?
Fatdan has taken alot of heat for his play, but i honestly think hes a decent player and I think there are a lot of good players that just get too caught up in the SNE chase to show what they are really all about.

Most over-rated?

I’ts hard to say who’s over-rated just for the fact that certain styles counter others. I also think its really rude to put one player on the spot here and will plead the 5th on this one.

Who, if anyone, have you met in real life?
I just met gomukyaself and he is officially the first and only one so far.

Most Tilty?

Least Tilty?
ryanj (insert random #’s here)

Best table selection?

studboy 100%

Best short stacker(lol)?
Too many to list!!!! ROFL!

About the Author: Andrew Ferguson

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