Poker is a Super Sport

Doug Kopecky

Doug Kopecky

I know that the title of my little column every week is “Ball Talk”, but this week I am going to talk about a sport that doesn’t involve putting a ball in a hoop, or crossing a goal line.

This isn’t a very taxing sport on the body, but can be on the mind, and the checkbook for that matter. That’s right, I am bringing all of you into the world of No Limit Texas Hold ‘Em Poker, and I am not even going to quote “the Gambler” to do it.

I know what you are thinking, “Has our fearless leader Doug finally lost it?” And I say “No” to that.

Poker is a sport.

You spend 6 hours at a table, drinking beer and trying to bluff your way through a pair of threes against a guy that never checks, a guy that thinks he has a pair of twos, but really has a straight, and a guy that seems to have a full house every hand, and see how you feel at the end of the night.

Sports aren’t about how good of an athlete you are. If that was true, fat high school quarterbacks like me couldn’t play sports anymore.

Sports are about competition.

Sports are about beating your opponent. Sometimes they involve outrunning someone, and at other times, they involve catching a spade on the river to complete your flush draw.

Half of sports such as foot ball football lies in the preparation. If you person is the best athlete, but dumb as a post, they will to fall for the counter every play and be out of position.

It is the same way in Texas Hold ‘Em; you need to be smart. If not, you will be losing your money. For someone like me, that hurts a lot more than losing in a softball game.

My final bit of evidence that Texas Hold ‘Em can be considered a sport, is when I lost any kind of sporting event, that night and most of the next day, I would sit and think about what I did wrong, and what I should have done better.

I lost last night, because I went all in with a pair of queens and sixes. I lost because I thought I had the best possible hand, but in hindsight, there was a pair of threes on the board, and my opponent had the third three.

I have been thinking about that hand all day today. It’s probably the reason I am writing this article that none of you are probably reading at this point.

So in closing, always remember that if there is a pair of nines on the board, there is always “a possible pair of nines.”

And never forget to know when to fold ’em. Dammit.