That grandiose title is going to need some quick clarifications for an understandably skeptical reader. First and foremost, this blog post is a book review of poker pro Dylan Linde’s new book, ‘Mastering Mixed Games: Winning Strategies for Draw, Stud and Flop Games’. But my post title about winning a WSOP bracelet is not just click bait, this book is part of my own strategy to maximize my chances of a bracelet in the coming years. To be fair, the title of this post should really be ‘how to maximize your chances of winning a wsop bracelet without being a huge dog in each tournament’. The implication here is that we are going to play events in games we are not experts in, but by careful study we hope to compensate and give ourselves a decent chance. Just a cursory skim of the field sizes in the 2019 WSOP that is wrapping up should convince you that if your goal is to win a bracelet it’s probably time to learn some other games. The 1500 buyin Razz event got just 363 players. Even the 1500 Limit Holdem event which most any 4/8 holdem player would have at least some chance of winning got just 541 players. If the bracelet, rather than the money, is the primary goal you want to increase your chances by playing in events that have hundreds of players not thousands of players. You have to broaden your horizons to mixed games.
A quick word about the author. Dylan Linde is a recent WPT main event champion and a WSOP Circuit main event winner. He has amassed more than $4 million in live tournament cashes and countless more online. But perhaps he is best known as the jack of all trades elite coach on Run It Once contributing coaching videos on a wide variety of games. As such he is perfectly qualified to write this book. Most of the other written content out there covering these games can safely be categorized as old-school. That doesn’t mean that older content is without merit, but its hard to know what advice has aged well and what hasn’t. Dylan is familiar with how the modern incarnation of these timeless games play now, in 2019.
If you are a strong NL Holdem player you will find Dylan Linde’s “Mixed Games” book a great way to branch out. The language of the book is not directed at beginning players learning a game. It is oriented towards players who already have a good grasp of many poker concepts but who are newer to the specifics of these other games. I also enjoy that each section is not overly verbose. Each game is explained, there is a discussion of what ranges are appropriate by position followed by a few key concepts particular to the game. He then jumps into a practical quiz section with examples and explanations of the appropriate actions. It’s just enough so that you can cover a lot of ground quite quickly and at enough depth that it’s meaningful learning. Obviously, what you get out of it will have to be street tested and then you can return to the book and reread sections as your real world understanding of the games develops. That’s my plan anyway, I’m pretty confident that with the tools in the book I can ramp up pretty quickly and be in a position to play some of the 1500s in these games in the 2020 WSOP (after some lower buyin practice at the summer mixed games events they run at the Golden Nugget or the Orleans) .
It’s hard to imagine how twenty bucks could better serve you on your quest to winning a WSOP bracelet. A really worthwhile and enjoyable read you can pick up the book here (an affiliate link that supports the blog):