2007 WCOOP: Interview with Event #6 winner, Greg Raymer

By now, you've likely heard that Team PokerStars' Greg "Fossilman" Raymer added a bracelet to his collection this morning after winning the 2007 PokerStars World Cup of Poker Event #6 ($320 Rebuy PL Omaha). Just a few hours later, Greg is awake, $168,000 more wealthy, and answering our questions.

Q. So, you sort of disappeared on the final table bubble for a while. Describe the disconnect period and what was going on at Chez Raymer the middle of the outage.

Raymer: The disconnect totally sucked, as you can imagine. At first I tried to re-establish it, disconnecting and reconnecting the network, restarting my computer, but it soon became clear that the problem was not inside my house or computer, but somewhere else with the cable. Fortunately, my Internet came back soon enough, so I was able to continue playing as normal.

Q. You looked pretty solid throughout the day. Were you just feeling in your stride or was it just one of those rush days?

Raymer: I was getting dealt a lot of reasonable good to great starting hands, and I was catching a lot of good flops, so we can give luck a bulk of the credit for this result.

Q. Talk about the final table, your opponents, and the key hands for you.

Raymer: There were so many key hands, some that went my way, and many that did not, and I just can't recall them all at this time. It was nice to start the final table with the chip lead, but as you saw, that came and went as the table progressed. The best thing was that most of my opponents, even when they had chips, were not interested in gambling, and they were allowing me to steal tons of small pots. Often, in PLO, I like to just limp in and see the flop before committing a lot of money. However, in this case, from the bubble to the win, it was clear that my steal equity was so high that I had to pursue it aggressively. As for individual opponents, I thought all of them played well, as far as I could tell from the cards that were shown. -db- in particular played an extremely patient game, and never got his chips in the middle while behind, I believe. I only took him out because I won as a 2:1 underdog with my flush draw.

Q. You said at the final table you'd won some small Omaha tournaments, but you considered this a big won. Tell us why.

Raymer: $168,000 is why. Plus, this event, as is true for all the WCOOP events,garners a lot of attention. Other than the bigger brick-and-mortar events, the WCOOP is a huge thing on my calendar, and something to look forward to winning in every year. I am sure once I go to twoplustwo.com or any of the other big poker discussion boards, I'm going to see a lot of talk about my win, and a lot of discussion of the hands I played well, or poorly.

Q. It got a little contentious with your heads-up opponent. Any thoughts?

Raymer: I wouldn't say contentious. I would just say that he was getting rather whiny. The funny thing is, I can get bad beat several times in a row on PokerStars, and then when I win a simple coin-flip hand or the like, the losing player will whine in the chat box about the games being rigged in my favor. Obviously, this is just sour grapes on their part, and reflects NOTHING about the reality of the situation. Also, I think that this player quite possibly had little if any experience with heads-up PLO. I mean, why would he think it’s a big deal for me to call with the dumb end of the straight? I mean, it's not like a full table, where you often give your opponents credit for the nuts when you don't hold them yourself. Most of his whining seemed to reflect this misunderstanding, as I would call him down with hands that are quite weak by full table standards.

Q. What does winning a WCOOP bracelet mean to you?

Raymer: This means a LOT to me. As far as I am concerned, this is only a small step shy of winning a WSOP bracelet. While I have had some very good results in the last 3 years, I haven't really WON anything since the Main Event in 2004. So, winning this tournament is a fantastic feeling.

Q. What's next for you?

Raymer: Win the Omaha hi-lo tomorrow, and do the commentary while playing. ;-)

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in