Itching for SCOOP

It's springtime, and if you're like me you're starting to think about the Spring Championship of Online Poker on PokerStars. SCOOP is a great series and I always look forward to starting the grind of playing all of those tournaments.

One very nice aspect of SCOOP is how accessible it can be for players thanks to the different level buy-ins -- the "low," "medium," and "high." Even the microstakes players can satellite into the low buy-in events without too much trouble. And really, no matter what a player's bankroll is, he or she is going to be able to find a preferred game and the right stakes.

This year I'm considering the possibility of traveling elsewhere to play the SCOOP events -- perhaps to Mexico -- although in truth there's nothing like the comfort of playing at home on one's usual set-up. Actually I'll be in Monte Carlo for the EPT which is going to run right up to the start of SCOOP, and so I probably don't want to incur too much in the way of travel costs and thus make it necessary to win more in order to profit.

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In a way, these ideas relate to each other -- the way SCOOP provides all players options that are comfortable, no matter their bankrolls, and how being comfortable in terms of where you play is important, too. You're always going to have a better chance to succeed if you are comfortable with the stakes you've chosen and with your surroundings when you play.

Continuing with that theme, SCOOP offers so many events every day, you should be able to pick your spots and ensure that the events you do play fit your schedule in terms of the time commitment you'll be making. There are so many options on the schedule with multiple events running every day, you shouldn't have to put yourself in a position in which, say, if you make a deep run in a tournament you'll have to worry about going to work or class or wherever at the end of it.

These are all good rules to abide by, anyway -- to play within your means, to play in a place that is comfortable for you, and to schedule your play so as to minimize conflicts or distractions. I think SCOOP makes it easy for players to find their comfort zones and play their A-games and do as well as they can.

So I'm really looking forward to SCOOP again. If you're playing, look for me and the other Team Pros at the tables, because you'll find us playing in all of the events -- low, medium, and high.

Matthias de Meulder is a member of Team PokerStars Pro