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WSOP: Bracelet Winner Q and A -- Scott Seiver

The Online Star Seiver Defeats a Final Table Full of Online Talent and Tells the Tale


Scott SeiverThe final table of Event No. 21 at the 2008 World Series of Poker, the $5,000 no-limit hold'em event was Scott "gunning4you" Seiver's for the taking. He came in with the chip lead, and never faltered in the face of strong opposition from Scott "SCTrojans" Freeman, Adam "csimmsux" Geyer, and Ben Sprengers. Seiver took home his first gold bracelet for the win, and he continued a strong summer where he has cashed three times for $782,046. Seiver talked about the state of his poker game right now, who he was most worried about facing heads up, and why he might end up shaking on the ground somewhere after the win when Card Player caught up with him at the post-final table press conference.

You play a lot of high-stakes, so-called nosebleeds heads-up online. In terms of adrenaline and stress, and just having fun, how does that compare to being heads up here for a World Series of Poker gold bracelet?

Scott Seiver:
I had a ton of adrenaline and a ton of stress actually last night when I was trying to go to bed in anticipation of the final table. I was very surprised at myself that I wasn’t really stressed at all throughout the entire table. I felt very calm and comfortable and really in the zone. It sounds cliché but I felt good about my play and the control I had over the table. Really, the only nervousness I had was in that final all in…When I was like please hold, one time. In nosebleeds also I’m not really stressed or anything except for after I finish playing as well, and then all the stress of if I won a ton or lost a ton hits me. Maybe we’ll see in six hours I’m shaking on the ground somewhere. For now I feel fine.

Q: Was the reason you were so calm because you had a solid strategy coming into the final table with the big stack at the table? Did it play out how you wanted it to?

It definitely played out how I wanted it to; I knew…The final table actually had a lot of good players that know the concept of how to play a final table. Since I had so many chips and everyone else was so closely bunched together I felt I was really able to take advantage of the fact that it was to none of the other stacks best interests to tangle with me, because they all had to wait each other out, and so I did a lot of aggressive three-betting, a lot of calling in position. I put people to decisions a lot of the time because it would just be so disastrous for them to ever get into any all-in spot against me, even if they had a decent percent edge on that particular hand.

You bubbled a final table already [level 15 update] this year, and you had a big stack in that tournament. Was it the same strategy, and it just didn’t work out that time? Was it adjustments you’ve made since then that allowed you to succeed today?

SS: It was pretty much the exact same strategy, all that happened was three consecutive hands that I got my opponent all in...And lost all three. I had sixes vs. Joe Tehan’s queens…And then I had A-K vs. A-9, and then tens vs. A-K, and that was it from double second [place] to out. It happens, but hopefully now, I see that it can happen the other way as well.

Q: It’s your third deep finish here at the 2008 World Series? Are you playing your best poker right now, and why is that?

SS: I feel I’m playing really good poker now, and it’s more just the amount of poker I’ve been playing recently. I played a ton of hands last month in May and did extremely well, and I feel that this gives me a lot more confidence than I had before. I hadn’t played a live tournament before the Series until…I think January’s PCA might have been the last so, I think it’s really showing now that I’m playing on a much higher level than I was even as recently five-six months ago.

You’ve made some money in the past, and still this is not an inconsiderable amount of money. Is this going to change things for you, open up any new opportunities, or are you going to just throw it on to the pile?

Honestly, probably not, it’s more throw it on to the pile and keep going…as long as I can, and hopefully the rush continues.

Q: Was it a big relief to you to see two strong players in Scott Freeman, and Adam Geyer go out real quick at the start of the final table? Was there anyone you were worried about after that?

It was actually painful for me that Scott went. I’m pretty good friends with him and I felt really bad busting him there, but, it happens and he’s very good so in the poker mindset I was glad. Ben [Sprengers] though was actually one of the best players at that table and extremely good heads up. I wasn’t really…I was pretty much indifferent to anyone busting out at any point, except the fact that I was very glad that Ben wasn’t heads up with me.