Why This Course – Is Phil Ively’s MasterClass Worth It?
Masterclass.com has become a marketing platform for many a poker player who want to reach out to the public with a view of finding new customers. Ivey, however, finds a way to come over the top with an unique approach and tons of answers for the players willing to learn. In that sense, the course is spot on!
That’s not even the least unexpected though, we are talking about the golden boy of poker after all. But let’s leave the fan’s perspective aside for a moment and properly assess what’s on offer here. What we’re going to be looking at is a series of lessons each of which touching on a subject that’s crucial for truly understanding how what playing as a professional really means. The course itself can be divided in two parts, the first of which can be particularly useful to the new players. More about that – in the next paragraph. Not that Phil has bias against the rookies.
Who’s Phil Ivey’s MasterClass For?
In all honesty, even the beginning stages of Ivey’s course can prove a bit challenging to understand for a complete beginner. If you don’t know the basics how are you going to make sense of blind defense and preflop betting patterns? That’s why it should be noted that the masterclass in question is geared towards the more experienced of poker players.
If you can’t call yourself a seasoned player, then you can proceed with exploring our Daniel Negreanu Masterclass review. One more thing you need to know is that, while being a poker masterclass, the course covers Texas Hold’em exclusively. Well, at least for the most part. There’s a 12th bonus chapter that explains how important it is to master other poker variations. The 10-times world champion does you one better, explaining the basics of 7-card Stud. So, there’s still some value for players who are interested in the exotic side of poker but we wouldn’t say there’s enough for a non-Hold’em player to invest into the course.
What’s the Course Really About?
The course is also the right place to get an Insider’s look at the professional life of one of the best poker players of all time. Phil opens up about his game, tournament and high-stakes games experiences. Particularly familiar with both worlds, he analyses video footage from tournaments and televised cash games he participated in. The way this works is first Phil Ivey explains a concept or gives a poker tip and then you get to see a real-life example at a professional level. Next, Ivey breaks down his thought process and analyses the hand play-by-play. What else could you ask for? But wait, it’s fair to look at the full list of lessons before you can decide for yourself whether this is course is going to cut it for you. Find the exact lesson plan below.
- Phil’s Journey
- Preflop and Blind Defense
- Betting Tactics
- Postflop, Part 1
- Postflop, Part 2
- Deepstack Play
- The Mental Game
- Table Image and Tells
- Strategies for Success
- Bonus Chapter: Seven-Card Stud
It’s true the lesson plan looks impressive as it is, but there are few advantages you might not be aware of that come with the whole package when you use masterclass.com’s platform. First of all, everything is saved on a secure web server for you to access anytime you want. The webpage has a cross-platform design, which makes it compatible with mobile desktop and Apple TV at the same time. Though, you don’t need to download anything as this is a web-based experience, you have the freedom to download a class workbook filled with lesson recaps, assignments and glossary.
Study all 11+ Lessons at Your Own Pace Ivey’s MasterClass
As Phil reveals, he’s more of a flow player, the type that listens to their gut instinct. If you want to elevate your understanding of how poker is played, then all eleven lessons will serve you well. Once you start acknowledging these subtle nuances of the game, you will understand what it’s that separates the good from the best poker players. But enough pep talk, let’s see some real examples of how this course will help you learn poker.
Preflop and Blind Defense – Hand-Range and Tips
In this part of Phil Ivey’s Masterclass puts in a lot of effort trying to communicate the importance of not overdefending blinds and learning to play a dynamic range of hands instead of a fixed chart. A hard lesson to learn but a one that pays off big long-term. In simple terms, in this segment you will learn whent to let go of a hand and how to pick a good starting hand depending on your gameplan and ability to execute it. Ivey also goes as far as to say that defending with suited connectiors has been a primary way for him to make quite a bit of money. An interesting claim but substantiated with first-hand example from the champion himself. True to the chronological order of the lessons, this one gives you something to build on in the next lessons. For that reason, it’s worth reviewing it a few times and even taking notes.
Lesson Three: Betting Tactics
Phil Ivey makes it apparent that in order to be successful, optimising the value you get from each hand is crucially important. In simple terms maximising value while minimising risk is what you should be striving for. We know that some of you will think that this sounds easy enough, others will decide that it seems rather complicated. The truth is, as usual, in the middle. The good news is that your tutor has a really good game plan on how to teach you to do that. He uses the well-known structure of giving a detailed overview followed by a real-world example. Following his tactics, as far as you are not completely clueless when it comes to poker, of course, you will be able to actually optimise every single hand that you get. Below you can see which are the topics that are covered in this class and then to read a bit more details:
- Bluff catching
- Blocker Betting
- Three betting and four betting
- Polarised Value Bets
In theory, this class should be enough to tool you up with all the tools of the trade. An unbiased evaluation, however, has to flag up the fact that players are expected to have previous cash game or tournament experience. In spite of that, video footage and commentary synergise so well that even beginners would be able to comprehend the idea behind what’s being explained. Players with no hands-on experience would appreciate the methodical fashion in which this segment is set up. After teaching you how to blocker-bet, the course will familiarise you with overbetting and three betting. Before long you’ll be good to hit the poker tables. Or the baccarat tables – we have the guide to help you do that. High stakes gambling and the name of the 10-times WSOP winner have always been closely connected, but little known is the fact that Phil Ivey and live baccarat have a lot of history too.
Lesson Four: Bluffing
How many of you have been dreaming of pulling off a successful bluff and earning the respect of all your friends and relatives? Maybe you were missing the right tools to enable you to add this component to your game, well, worry no more. With the help of this lesson you can plot your path to mastering bluffing. Phil Ivey takes you through the full spectrum of bluffing techniques, as always, respecting the importance of table positioning.
The champ has to add that If you are not bluffing or getting bluffed at, you’re not playing poker. That’s how pivotal it’s to mix up your play with bluffs here and there. Another thing Ivey says is that the best players can pinpoint the logic behind their bluffs. If a player isn’t particularly good then they can be taken advantage of and that’s another thing this segment teaches you how to do. The way the content of this lesson is laid out makes it crystal clear there’s a lot of mind-games and putting the pieces together when you’re trying to set up a trap or to figure one out. Those things however are bound to remain hidden to the inexperienced of players. Much like the relation between the name of Phil Ivey and edge sorting.
There you have it – our review of this poker masterclass. Now it’s time for our verdict. If you still don’t know what to make of this course, it’s most likely not the right product for you at this point. As we mentioned earlier, there are other pros like Daniel Negreanu that are willing to get their hands dirty with the basics of poker, and they really do a good job of giving you a beginner-friendly introduction to poker. Though a bit more advanced, any poker expert worth their salt would tell you that course is one-of-ective on the world of professional poker.