We caught up with Ben "Sauce123" Sulsky recently to talk poker, U.S. versus Canada, and who's in his entourage.
Ben you are one of the hottest online players right now crushing the high-stakes games. Tell us what's been going on with poker and your life in general?
Well, life and poker are pretty great right now. I'm studying philosophy at the University of Toronto and my classes are solid this semester. So I kind of just kick back at my computer and do homework and then gamble for a ton of money if at all possible.
You're from the States, what made you decide to go to the University of Toronto?
I spent a summer up here with one of my good friends and had a great time and met some great people. Never really looked back. Toronto is just a hugely underrated city, I think.
Tell us the key on being able to balance playing poker and school? Most of the high-stakes pros didn't go to college or have dropped out to play full time. Give us your thoughts on the importance of an education, too.
I'm kind of a strange beast in that I go to school basically for entertainment. I already dropped out once and spent a year and a half traveling and living in hotel rooms and grinding all night, but it gets old after awhile. I love poker, but poker 100% of the time gets to be oppressive. I like to play maybe 25 or 30 hours a week of poker and then spend the rest of my time on school, sports and friends.
For a player who wants to make the transition from no-limit to pot-limit Omaha, can you give any advice and tips on bankroll management?
Well, I'm an idiot this way. So, the first PLO game I played was $200/$400 because I thought a bunch of even bigger idiots than I was were playing and I thought I could learn quickly. Then, I realized idiots with experience were still better than me and dropped down to $25/$50 to regroup.
I lost some more money because those games were tougher than the $200/$400 games. Then I dropped down to $5/$10 and lost some more money because they were still better than me. Finally, much poorer, I became break even at $2/$4 and worked my way back up to $200/$400. So my advice is doing the exact opposite of that.
Since you're one of the elite cash players in the world right now, will you start playing many live tournaments at all? Such as PCA or Aussie Millions?
I hate live tournaments and I kind of hate casinos, so I generally avoid them like the plague. When I do go, I get really excited to see people and win tournaments and get on TV, but then within the first hour I realize I drank too much coffee, and it's an hour before the break, and I'm fidgeting and I want to go home. Then I make a bad bluff and the old nits make fun of me and I'm out $10k. I lack the discipline for live poker. Also, every time I don't win the whole tournament I feel like I lost, and I hate losing. That's the biggest reason!
Would you ever want to play on the PokerStars.net Big Game or Poker After Dark?
Maybe. I think my live cash game is pretty bad. Again, I'm undisciplined, and I also get nervous about having tells live or maybe just not having good presence live. I think I need practice and work on my live game, and I'm not willing to put the time in right now.
If you’re not playing poker what would you be doing?
Hanging with friends, cooking, playing squash, hiking, drinking, skiing, adventuring, seeing concerts, and reading!
Where is the best nightlife scene, U.S. or Canada?
[Laughs] I won't betray my homeland, but I like it up here!
If you could have any super power what would it be and why?
Super power to create more super powers at a later date obv. Gotta go meta, I'm lame.
You're at XS in Las Vegas, who is in your entourage?
Lebron James, Abraham Lincoln, Mark Hinchliff, Phil Ivey and Mitch Hedberg
Who do you think are the three toughest PLO players in the world and why?
I don't know because I don't play them. If I had to speculate, I'd say Phil Ivey, Phil Galfond and someone else with the first two being close but really different.
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