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When I Was a Donk: Frank Kassela

Top Pros Share Their Early Mistakes

by Brian Pempus |  Published: Nov 02, 2011

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Frank Kassela is one of poker’s best all-around players and nicest guys. The Tennessee native broke out big time at the 2010 World Series of Poker, winning two bracelets and recording a third-place finish in the $25,000 no-limit hold’em six-handed event. The scores were long overdue for the poker veteran, as he finally managed to cement his status as a regular on the tournament circuit. Altogether, he has more than $2.3 million in career earnings spanning about a decade. Card Player caught up with Kassela to talk about the first no-limit hold’em tournament he had ever played — the 2000 WSOP main event – and how he learned from it. “The funniest thing for me to remember when I reflect on my performance during my very first no-limit hold’em tournament is my complete lack of understanding about bet size. “Over time I developed a keener understanding of how important my ...


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