Lost: My Twitch virginity

Last week I started streaming on Twitch. It's something I've wanted to do for a long time. I'm an avid Twitch user myself. Over the past 4-5 years, I watched a ton of Starcraft and Dota streams. I just never knew what kind of content I wanted to make streaming myself. However, when this year started out slow and I couldn't really get myself to pick up the grind, I figured it was time for something new. So I did what I should have done a long time ago: just turn the camera on.

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I was so perfectionistic about streaming that it stopped me from doing it. Only now I realize it's a process. You fix something every day, and you make it better step by step with the help of people watching. Every morning I try to implement some stuff people have been asking for and it's very gratifying to show improvements have been made. One of the things I've always liked about social media is the contact with people. Twitch is one step further. It really is like hosting a TV-show for people, and they get to help improve the show. There is so much interaction. I really don't think you can get much closer to people you like to follow than on Twitch.


Want to play with Lex? Click here to get a PokerSars account.

As for my content, I started out doing what I would normally do when playing poker: play Pot Limit Omaha. However, I don't think PLO is that well suited for streaming, so I'll probably do that on a designated day. You make a lot of money by fighting for the small pots and noticing little mistakes in betting ranges from people. It's less linear than Hold 'em. I really like to interact with the chat, play music, and browse videos. Combine that with PLO, and it becomes too hectic. Either your stream or your play suffers. Viewers told me they would like to see some MTTs. So I figured, "What the hell?"

I used to love to play tournaments. The glory, the tension, the fact there was a champion at the end. Over the years that changed greatly, and I started to really dislike them. My atrocious tournament record may or may not have played a part in that. Playing them on stream and talking about them has changed everything. I feel like I've come full circle in my career, and now I can approach poker from a different point of view. It's like I was finally able to take a step back and appreciate the game for what it is. A big part of this comes from the enthusiasm viewers have. It's nice to see poker through the eyes of people who just started falling in love with it.

Yesterday I did something that might come as a surprise: I won a tournament.

It was a small buy-in, but finishing at the top of 1,181 players for $2,685 felt great. I liked the grind, I liked the decisions that I had to make, and I was happy to enjoy my first time winning a tournament on stream. There is always a lot of hype around final tables and going deep in tournaments. It was awesome to experience it firsthand. Streaming has rekindled my love for poker as PLO had done a few years ago. Regardless of the necessary variance that comes with winning a tournament, it still feels like I'm on the right track, and I can't wait to see where this is all going.


Want to play with Lex? Click here to get a PokerSars account.
Lex Veldhuis is a member of Team PokerStars Pro Online. You can watch him on Twitch here.