The Pros: Chris Moneymaker, Brock Wilson, and Kahle Burns Craig Tapscott: Can you share the lessons you’ve learned regarding bankroll management over the years? What are the leaks you’ve come across that many other players are making?

Chris Moneymaker: Proper bankroll management is the most important skill in all of poker. The best poker players go broke and need backing all the time, mainly because they cannot master this skill.

As a general rule, you need 100 buyins to play tournaments consistently. So, if you play $1,000 buy-in events regularly, then you need at least $100,000 for a proper poker bankroll. Of course, you can take shots here and there and play something bigger at times, but even then, it should not exceed 10% of your bankroll.

Brock Wilson: Bankroll management is something I have been mindful of since I began playing poker. When I worked in finance after graduating college, I played poker on the side. During that time, I definitely took larger risks, due to the fact that I had a stable job to rely on. That was key in the beginning of my poker career.

Once I had a net worth of about $25,000 that I built from playing poker, I decided that I wanted to be a pro, instead of working in finance. I took a shot, $10,000 of that bankroll, and played in the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure main event. I would have played the World Series of Poker main event, but I had to intern during that summer. So, it was the PCA in January during winter break instead.

I really thought I was destined to win, but I busted early day two and was devastated. I rebuilt my bankroll, but had other income along the way. I felt it was okay to risk this investment at the time into one event and take a chance.

This relates only to pros, but once poker becomes a main source of income in our lives, it is important to separate your living expenses from your poker expenses. You must quickly realize that if you take too many huge risks, and […]

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