PokerNews Interview: WPT Hard Rock Champion Taylor von Kriegenbergh
Taylor von Kriegenbergh has been a hot topic lately. He’s having a great 2011 and PokerNews recently highlighted him as one of our rookies to look out for at this year’s World Series of Poker. Von Kriegenbergh was kind enough to give us a few minutes of his time as the WSOP grows nearer.
You've had an amazing 2011 so far and your confidence in poker must be at an all-time high. How do you feel going into the WSOP? Are you worried at all about the intense grind that comes with the WSOP?
Heading into the WSOP, I feel excellent. Getting off to a hot start in 2011 has boosted my confidence and bankroll, which allows me to avoid the intense grind that comes with the WSOP. If I had a smaller bankroll, I would be playing every day, hoping to get a big score. The constant grind is stressful and detrimental to your body and mind. Having a bankroll makes life a lot easier.
What are your plans for the WSOP? How many events do you plan on playing and which ones are you looking forward to the most?
Honestly, I haven't really looked at the schedule. I know there is a big $5,000 event to start off the series that I'd like to play, and I'm looking forward to the Main Event the most. I've been dreaming of winning the Main Event for six to seven years now, and finally I have the opportunity to play it. I'm very excited.
Yes, that first big $5,000 event starts on June 2 and will be an exciting one. Outside the Main Event, which event would you like to win the most?
It’s hard to choose one tournament as the one I’d like to win the most. Every tournament I enter I want to win. I feel like this mentality is a necessity for a professional poker player. If I had to choose one event that I’d like to win the most, I’d choose the first WSOP tournament I play, which will probably be the $5,000 on June 2. Starting off the WSOP with a win would be ideal.
Do you have any specific goals for the 2011 WSOP?
My main goal for the 2011 WSOP is to get stronger, physically and mentally. For me, eating, sleeping and exercising properly throughout the series is the key to success. I've come to find out that these three things are my foundation, and when they get the proper attention everything else falls into place. In addition to this, spending time with friends and family, participating in non-poker related things helps keeping me centered. I'd love to take time off during the series to visit the Grand Canyon and Zion National Park.
On the poker side of things, I want to play each hand to the best of my ability, and the higher power above will take care of the rest!
We all know you recently won a WPT championship event for over $1.1 million. Would winning a WSOP gold bracelet top that in your book even if it was for less money?
Winning a WSOP bracelet would be a dream come true. It's something I've wanted for years and now have the chance to do it. Do I think it will top my WPT win? Hmm, only time will tell.
Everyone in poker has his or her own crew of close-knit friends in the game. Who would you suggest we also be keeping an eye on this summer to have a big splash at the series out of your crew?
If David Paredes (“Gaucho2121”) can put in the hours, I think he has a great chance of winning a bracelet. He is a great all-around poker player that has made tons of deep runs and is due for a win. Some other players I could see winning a bracelet are Armen “Delmonico” Hejinian, the two Bryans, Leskowitz and Paris, Oscar Kemps, Morgan Wiper, Bucky Wantman and Kyle Loman. Oh yeah, Ronnie Bardah will win the 1/2 limit hold'em, 1/2 no-limit hold'em event.
Do you have any side bets on the Series?
No, I don't like to gamble.
Von Kriegenbergh, who played in the WPT World Championship last week fell short of the money by 12 spots. Still, he's very confident going into the WSOP. We'll see if he can take the confidence and turn it into some gold jewelry this summer.