Kar Yung Tom is a longtime Red Chip Poker member and avid player both online and live. Living in Montreal affords him the luxury (at least compared to most US players) of playing online or live any time he wants. As a result, he’s developed into a player to be feared, so we wanted to talk to him to see how he developed his skills, and what role Red Chip has played.
Meet Kar Yung Tom – Fast Facts
Poker Nickname: kytmagic
Started Playing Poker: Around 2003, when Moneymaker won the WSOP.
Favorite Poker Rooms: PokerStars
Currently Playing: 200NL live, 10NL and 25NL 6-max online.
Forum Profile: kytmagic
How did you get into poker?
Once Moneymaker won the WSOP, my friends would start hosting poker tournaments at their house. As a competitive chess and Magic player, playing poker was and still is really fun to me.
How did you progress from a beginner to an advanced player that closely studies the game?
I used to read a ton of chess books, so reading poker books just felt natural to me. Hilariously enough, my first book was Phil Hellmuth’s Texas Hold ‘Em which is now considered a book filled with extremely wrong information.
Are you a full-time poker player? If not, what is your main profession?
I was for a very small period of time this year. Currently, I am the Media Coordinator for Face to Face Games, the biggest Magic: the Gathering store in Canada.
How would you describe your poker playing style?
My playing style is sadly an unimaginative TAG. I haven’t had to deviate because it is such a profitable style in live games.
Besides poker, what are your other main interests?
I am extremely competitive Magic: the Gathering player, having qualified for two Pro Tours in the past year. I was also a hobbyist magician for a good portion of my life. David Blaine revolutionized the way I viewed magic.
How has being a Red Chip member improved your game?
I think the videos are the most effective on the market today. I believe videos that focus on teaching a particular concept are the most beneficial.
Are there any specific Red Chip videos or articles did you get a lot out of?
Honestly way too many. Most of them are awesome. I have enjoyed videos where we get to see James coaching a student as I can often relate to the student.
You’re a frequent poster in our forums. What do you like about Red Chip forums, especially compared to other forums?
I enjoy that the core coaches of the site actively participate in the forums.
What are some of your fondest poker memories/highlights of your poker playing life?
During my last Vegas trip, I won my first SNG at the Mandalay Bay. I also got to meet both Doug Hull and James Sweeney. We played a 1/2 NL game at the Golden Nugget one night and James decided to completely own Doug. Definitely good times. Not for Doug of course!
Do you have any advice or parting words of wisdom for other Red Chip members and poker players?
The only thing that took forever to hammer in my head is simply how high the level of variance is in this game even if you are a winning player. I obviously knew there was variance, but I underestimated how badly one can run.
I’ve gone through multiple stretches running 30 buy-ins under EV online, but having to go through that same type of stuff in live poker where you are playing hands at a snail’s pace is a true test of mental endurance. Don’t give up is my main piece of advice.
Any projects, websites or causes you’d like to promote?
I am in charge of ManaDeprived.com, Canada’s #1 website for Magic: the Gathering articles, videos, and podcasts. I am even the main host of a popular weekly podcast called the Eh Team.