WSOP: Calvin Anderson Back in Las Vegas with More Balanced Approach


Calvin Anderson hasn’t played a single WSOP event yet this summer – and he’s just fine with that (PokerStars photo)

A few days before the 2017 World Series of Poker began, WSOP bracelet winner and former #1-ranked player on PocketFives, Calvin Anderson fired out a tweet that caught a lot of people off guard.

As he has in years past Anderson had been in Mexico playing the PokerStars Spring Championship of Online Poker. He cashed 39 times, including a win in Event #13 (High) for $69,920 and a third place finish in Event #15 (Medium) for $154,400. With that kind of recent success, and his WSOP success in years past, Anderson was sure to be one of the most drafted players in the numerous WSOP fantasy drafts and that factored into his decision to not play his normal summer schedule.

“I don’t like the pressure of getting on all of these fantasy teams and then I feel like I have to play every event,” said Anderson. “Not everybody feels this way, but I feel a bit responsible to play because I know I’m really talented and I play all the games a lot and I’m able to beat the fields, but it’s just a bit exhausting.”

Anderson’s SCOOP schedule meant playing multiple events every day for three weeks straight and getting an average of four hours sleep each night. After years of jumping in to the WSOP right after SCOOP, Anderson wanted a more balanced approach and a chance to recharge while still being involved He arrived in Las Vegas earlier this week and was on the rail earlier this week as his longtime girlfriend, Kami Hudson, made a run in the $1,500 No Limit Hold’em event, eventually finishing 10th.

“I’ve been stepping back and buying some action, advising some people and that’s a role I would like to take more I would say,” said Anderson. “I’ve been working on a lot of mindset stuff and energy and vibrational stuff and it’s just more rewarding or fulfilling.“

Anderson cashed in six WSOP events in 2016, including a runner-up finish in the $1,111 Little One for One Drop for almost $325,000. He’s cashed 21 times over the previous four years and won his only career bracelet in 2014. It’s that level of success that has allowed Anderson to take a more measured approach this summer.

“Once you get to a point where you have a certain amount of money, you’re able to sit back and chill and think about what your skill set is. For me, a lot of people consider me to be a pretty good poker player, but I consider myself to be a pretty good teacher, too, and I back and advise quite a few people and I want to fine tune how a lot of things work,” said Anderson, who has recently joined the chorus of poker players trading cryptocurrencies.

Even though he’s not playing a full schedule, Anderson does still plan to play some events in the second half of the WSOP schedule. He’s just able to pick his spots based on how he’s feeling each day, rather than a need to chase Player of the Year of WSOP fantasy points.

“From a big picture standpoint, it’s time to take some time off and not feel pressure about the world. The World Series is crazy. You come here, every single tournament is such good value so you feel like a crackhead around here because you’re running around here playing all these tournaments,” said Anderson. “I feel like I’m finally a bit out of the rat race and I can just relax and play some tournaments, late-reg if I want to, if I don’t feel like playing, don’t play.”