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Poker Stories Podcast With Adam Friedman

by Card Player News Team |  Published: Oct 09, 2019


Poker Stories is a long-form audio podcast series that features casual interviews with some of the game’s best players and personalities. Each episode highlights a well-known member of the poker world and dives deep into their favorite tales both on and off the felt.

To listen, visit or download it directly to your device from any number of mobile apps, such as Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Google Play, or Spotify. Catch up on past episodes featuring notables such as Doyle Brunson, Daniel Negreanu, Justin Bonomo, Nick Schulman, Barry Greenstein, Michael Mizrachi, Bryn Kenney, Mike Sexton, Brian Rast, Chris Moneymaker, Maria Ho, Joe Cada, Freddy Deeb, and many more.

Age: 37
Hometown: Gahanna, Ohio
Live Tournament Earnings: $3.05 Million

Top Live Tournament Scores

June 2019 WSOP $10k Dealer’s Choice 1st $312,417
June 2018 WSOP $10k Dealer’s Choice 1st $293,275
June 2012 WSOP $5k Stud 8/ob 1st $269,037
July 2005 WSOP $10k Main Event 43rd $235,390
March 2014 WPT $10k LAPC Main Event 6th $200,440
April 2006 Midwest Regional Championship $5k 1st $147,940
June 2016 WSOP $10k H.O.R.S.E. 4th $131,519
June 2011 WSOP $1.5k H.O.R.S.E. 3rd $121,437
Aug. 2019 MSPT $1k Main Event 1st $121,405
March 2008 Midwest Regional Championship $2.5k 1st $101,258

Adam Friedman got his start in poker with a deep run in the 2005 World Series of Poker main event. Just 23 at the time, he has since put together a remarkably consistent career playing both cash games and tournaments. In 2006, he won the Midwest Regional Poker Championships main event. Incredibly, after skipping the tournament in 2007, he won the very same event again in both 2008 and 2009. This would not be the last time that Friedman was able to successfully defend a tournament title.

The Gahanna, Ohio native scored his first WSOP bracelet back in 2012, topping a tough final table in the $5,000 stud eight-or-better event that included the likes of Todd Brunson, John Monnette, Bryn Kenney, and Phil Ivey. In 2013, he won the HPT main event in Indiana, and in 2014, he final tabled the L.A. Poker Classic. In 2018, he won his second career bracelet, earning $293,275 in the $10,000 dealer’s choice event. Amazingly, he returned to Las Vegas this summer and won the very same event again, this time banking a $312,417 payday. In total, the 37-year-old mixed-games specialist has $2.9 million in career live tournament earnings.

Highlights from this interview include summer series accommodations, becoming a Hoosier, sleeping through the final four, a love for sports but not sports betting, being too emotional at the table, demanding the safe at the Tropicana, the 2005 WSOP main event, why his dad took away $100,000, Ohio living, making sure he booked a win at Commerce, a slow peel vs. Phil Hellmuth, a compliment from Doyle Brunson, the emotional turmoil of downswings, taking ego out of the game, why you need a plan for your money, betting on The Voice with Gavin Smith, back-to-back bracelets, drowning his sorrows in room service, and why we’re drawing dead on another 1,000 years.

The Transcript Highlights

On His First Trip To Vegas

Adam Friedman: The first time I came to Vegas was spring break, during my senior year of college. There was probably about a dozen of us or so, cramming four people to a room at the Tropicana.

Julio Rodriguez: Oh… nice accommodations.

AF: Well (laughing), we were still in college. I remember bringing… and this is one of the few things I can remember from that trip. I remember bringing out $1,700, which seemed like all the money in the world at the time. I was so paranoid about that $1,700, that the first thing I did when I got to the room was [demand the safe]. I said, ‘Guys, I’m getting the security box. You can tell me what you want to put in there and I’ll do it, but only I’m having access to it.’ I was so paranoid about it.
I played $3-$6 limit at the Luxor, and I remember losing $500 that night.

JR: What? At $3-$6?

AF: I remember getting A-K every third hand, flopping top pair every hand, and losing. I called my dad at five in the morning, getting emotional, and told him, ‘Dad, I just lost $500. I don’t understand what happened. I flopped top pair, top kicker every hand or better, and I’m losing. I’m seeing A-6 offsuit for three bets preflop. I’m seeing 10-7 off, 10-5 off. I can’t beat these people!’

He calmed me down, and even to this day, he’s still the person I go to when things aren’t going well in poker. He’s always able to put things into perspective.

On Where He Keeps His Bracelets

JR: I know you don’t necessarily care about the bracelets themselves, other than what they’re worth?

AF: Believe me, I have tried to find out what they go for.

JR: Do you have them anywhere special? Hanging up on the wall?

AF: They’re on my desk. The two are literally on top of each other. When I get back home, the third one will go on top and stay in its box.

The only time I ever brought it out, was when I won my first one seven years ago. I went to some club, that doesn’t exist anymore, and to celebrate that I won, they gave me three free bottles and discounts all night. Alright, you got me. That’s a good way to bring out the bracelet.

Last year when I was given my second bracelet, I jumped into the Millionaire Maker and still had it with me. People were passing it around and were saying, ‘Wow, this is the greatest thing ever.’

It’s nice to hear, but at the end of the day, the money is the most important thing. The thrill that my friends and family feel when I win, that’s no. 2, and then there’s a massive drop off after that. The bracelets are nice, winning is always nice, but it doesn’t define me or change what I do day to day. ♠

You can check out the entirety of the interview in the audio player at the top of the page or download it directly to your device to play on the go from iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play, Spotify, or your favorite podcast app.

Catch up on past episodes featuring notables such as Doyle Brunson, Daniel Negreanu, Justin Bonomo, Nick Schulman, Barry Greenstein, Michael Mizrachi, Bryn Kenney, Mike Sexton, Brian Rast, Freddy Deeb, Joe Cada, Chris Moneymaker, Maria Ho and many more. If you like what you hear, be sure to subscribe to get the latest episodes automatically when they are released.