By: Chad Holloway
Earlier this month, the WSOP School of Poker announced the addition of poker pro Jeff Gross to our roster of accomplished poker coaches.
The “Professional Best Friend” and noted Twitch streamer, Gross has amassed more than $2.7 million in live tournament earnings.
Gross’ biggest cash of $414,770 came back in 2013 when he finished third in the WPT Alpha8 Florida. Other career highlights include $317,450 for third in the 2012 WPT Montreal, $269,742 for finishing runner-up to Mark Radoja in the 2011 WSOP $5,000 No-Limit Shootout, and $109,621 for placing fifth in a 2010 WSOP $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em event.
We caught up with Gross to get his thoughts on becoming a part of the WSOP School of Poker team.
WSOP School of Poker: How did the opportunity to teach at the WSOP School of Poker come about?
The opportunity to teach at the WSOP School of Poker came up when two of my close friends, Brian Rast and Antonio Esfandiari, mentioned they thought it would be a good fit for me and my style of coaching/teaching.
What appealed to you about being a part of the WSOP School of Poker?
The WSOP is one of the premier brands in Poker. This is something I would like to be associated with. I take pride in helping/teaching, which I do a fair amount of on my Twitch channel at JeffGrossPoker.tv. When Antonio and Brian put their name and reputation behind this product, I already knew this was something I wanted to be involved with.
When you were an up-and-coming poker player, did you ever attend any seminars or seek out coaching?
Yes, when I began playing poker I would ask lots of questions from more experienced players. I also attended the first-ever WPT Boot Camp that took place. I was 18 years old and it was in Florida at the Hollywood Hard Rock. I find these type of group trainings very valuable if conducted properly.
Can you speak about your history and experience as a poker instructor?
I have done lots of coaching with individuals over the years and I have a Twitch show where I will do shows with 400-4,500 people watching. I have a lot of practice with articulating my thoughts and using a teaching format. I think some great players would not make very good coaches and some okay players would make great coaches. I think my style and demeanor is cut out well for coaching and most importantly I really enjoy doing it. It is rewarding when you are able to help people that are passionate about something to improve. I believe that this is a strength of mine.
What do you most enjoy about being a poker instructor? What are the biggest challenges?
I enjoy that you get to practice and improve yourself. Oftentimes going over things you know helps to solidify your own game and keeps you in practice. I also enjoy helping others. Individual coaching is good but doing it on Twitch or in a large group is much more rewarding. I like teaching/coaching on the computer, but doing it live, well I am very excited about the opportunity.
The biggest challenges are making sure you get give attention to everyone and you are able to work with various levels. A beginner and a more advanced player will need different types of attention and this can be frustrating for the contrasting levels. Being aware of this is very important.
What sort of lessons/topics will your seminar encompass?
I haven’t set the curriculum, but I will cover a wide range of topics and situations. I really like to deal out face-up hands and have the students talk me through their thought process and then give them what I would do in a given spot. There will be a lot of this. I will also talk some live tricks/routines I like to do and things to consider. I have a lot to cover! The time will be used to the max.