"Weekly interviews from poker players and game runners about the ins and outs of the underground poker world. Discuss strategy, philosophy and other topics"

 Photo Credit:  Peter Hellberg

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Tony Valle, Host

Tony’s nonna taught him to play cards while he was living with her at the age of three. He continued as a rounder into his teen years playing at wrestling tournaments, parties and holidays with the family. Once he was 18, Tony was able to play at local charitable games and increase his player network allowing him to finally get invited to an underground game.

By the age of 28, he was flat broke. He learned that either his grandma didn’t teach him very well, or maybe he was just a slow learner. “I suck at poker”, concluded Valle. “Smart money’s on the other side.” So, he built some tables, bought some chips and cards, called his network, and hosted his own poker game in Chicago that lasted over 10 years.

He has hosted 100+ person tournaments, 50+ person leagues, and no-limit cash games as many as three times a week. Tony was trained by a professional world series of poker dealer and the school of hard knocks.

 Photo Credit:  Mitya Ku

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David Gavri, Co-Host

David started playing poker in high school with his buddies during the “Money Maker Effect” poker boom in 2003 down in Houston, Texas. Small, friendly home games led him and his friends to explore the dark, underground Houston poker scene. After getting kicked to the curb by Houston’s seediest grinders and gamblers, David and his friends took the lessons they learned back to dominate their high school home games.

At the University of Arizona, David won an on-campus poker tournament and discovered poker games in underground card rooms and in casinos on the Indian reservations. After college, David moved back to Houston to begin his comedy career. The nights he wasn’t performing, he was playing poker in the underground Houston games, while also making weekend trips to Lake Charles, Louisiana to play poker actual casinos.

During his move to Chicago, David had a rough run-in with the law due to his past love for pot-brownies. The amount of brownies (It was a long road trip) led him to being charged with felony possession. Having to come up with a large amount of money in a short period of time, David began grinding at various casinos around the Chicagoland area, paying off all his court fees, and ultimately getting the charges dropped completely. He has been an active poker grinder ever since, giving him the freedom to pursue his comedy dreams.

 Photo Credit:  dimnikolov

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Pretty Tommy, Sound Engineer

Tommy Christoffel is an actor from Chicago, IL. He attended Columbia College and studied acting and radio. He has interned with 101WKQX, 97.9 The Loop, 94.7 WLS and 890AM. Interning at the WIP since May 2015, Tommy is known for his devilishly good looks and deep voice.