Published on
Update on

Konnikova as captured by

Maria Konnikova has become the latest PokerStars ambassador. The best-selling New York Times journalist has transformed her love for passion and research into a love for the game she has been researching.

Maria Konnikova set out to explore and research poker having never played any card game in her life. Before long, she found out something that didn’t surprise her much at first – she was actually good. So good in fact, as to proceed and amass $200,000 in the course of common research. Since she discovered her aptitude for poker, though, Konnikova has decided to pursue both her day job and love for poker.

Konnikova’s forays into the world of poker started modestly. She reached out to Erik Seidel and the two had a meeting during which Konnikova shared her intentions to research poker and write a book about it. Seidel thought it was well worth a shot and he agreed to teach her both the basics, but also introduce her into the more sophisticated aspects of the game. Later on, Seidel introduced Konnikova to Phil Galfond.

Konnikova then became good at poker. Exceptionally so, some may say. In January 2018, she joined a $1,650 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em National at the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (CPA) with a prize pool of $84,600. Thrilled by her success, PokerStars decided to hire her as their unofficial ambassador.

Konnikova then continued to compete. She managed to finish 42nd in the PCA Main Event and did well in the Asia Pacific Poker Tour (APPT).

Making Things Official

Konnikova, however, has now received an official invitation to become a PokerStars Ambassador, landing the brand additional exposure, but also is a testimony to her writing and poker prowess.

In the official press release, PokerStars continually reiterated Konnikova’s dedication to the game and her transformation from a novice to an accomplished professional. For her part, Konnikova was utterly pleased with the opportunity and shared that she “loved things that challenged her.”

With Konnikova now completely initiated to the secrecy of poker, she will be competing in a number of upcoming events, including the PokerStars Player’s No-Limit Hold’em Championship where Erik Siedel himself will be playing. Having the pair battle it out would be truly spectacular and it may also make a brilliant last chapter for The Biggest Bluff, her upcoming book dedicated to poker.

Konnikova doesn’t intend to give up on her career as a writer, however, and she will pursue both poker tournaments and her writing. Konnikova’s success, she believes, is partly because of the fact she worked hard and partly because she’s analytical in her thinking, but also look at things with fresh eyes.

Even then, Konnikova was doing poorly at the beginning and had to sacrifice many pleasures in order to learn the ropes of the game and in fact achieve the level she had been after all along. Even now, she admits that there’s a lot to be learned and that things are changing so quickly that it’s difficult to keep up with everything.

Lucky us then, as we’re only eager to finally crack open The Biggest Bluff.