Sports & Games


Phil Ivey

Lesson time 24:27 min

Using some of his favorite hands as teaching tools, Phil explains the importance of monitoring your opponents’ stacks and details the ideal circumstances for pulling off a convincing bluff.

Phil Ivey
Teaches Poker Strategy
Phil Ivey opens up for the first time about his poker strategy and teaches you how to make smarter moves at the table.
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[MUSIC PLAYING] - Getting bluffed is a part of playing poker. I mean, if you never get bluffed, you're not playing correctly. Just like if you never get caught bluffing, you're not playing correctly. I mean, if you don't get caught bluffing, then it's going to be so much easier for your opponents to play against you, because you don't have bluffs in your range. So if they know that you're capable of bluffing, they're going to make bigger mistakes against you. They're going to make mistakes against you that they won't make you other people. The object is to make your opponents make really big mistakes against you. [MUSIC PLAYING] It's important to know which better hands will fold and when on a river's, because you want your bluff to work. I mean, you need to know what your opponent's capable of folding. It's really important. You don't want to just be out there bluffing with no reason behind it. You want to have maybe some sort of a blocker card. The most simplest explanation of what a blocker would be is if there are three spades on the board and you have ace of heart, ace of spade. So you know your opponent cannot have the best possible hand. So that would be like you're betting that blocker, because you can only have the best possible hand. He cannot. Better players usually can give you a very detailed description of why they bluff, what card they were holding. Sometimes the reason may be as simple as I thought my opponent was weak. But usually, there's more of a detailed reason behind it. When they say the bluff doesn't make sense, it means you didn't tell the whole story of a hand the correct way. So it appears like, all of a sudden, you check a street that you normally would have bet. And now, all of a sudden, you come out of nowhere with a big bet when a card hits that could not have helped you. So that's why they say the bluff doesn't make sense, because the way you played the hand up to that point doesn't make sense. There's pretty much no way you could have a hand at this point. For instance, the flop is eight, six, three-- eight, six of heart. It checks to you, and then you check back. And then a turn comes-- a deuce. He checks you, and you check back. Then a river comes a seven of heart. Now comes eight, six, seven of heart. Now he checks. Now you make a big bet. If you're the type of player that would have bet a flush, draw, at that point, and you didn't, and you checked, now all of a sudden, you make a big bet on a river, it doesn't really make sense that you have a flush. How could you have a flush? Because on your previous hands, you would have bet a flush draw on the turn or on the flop. Now all of a sudden, you're betting when that card hits. It just doesn't make any sense. So you're more likely to get called, because it looks like there's no way you can have the hand. But you think about the way you play your hands when you have a hand, OK, and you try to emulate that when you're bluffing...

Inside the mind of a champion

At age 38, Phil Ivey became the youngest player to win 10 World Series of Poker bracelets. Now the man known for his enigmatic table presence—and widely regarded as the world’s best all-around poker player—gives you unprecedented access to his mental game. Learn poker strategy, pick up new poker tips, and review hands with the player who’s won more than $26 million in live tournament earnings.


Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

This class really opened my mind on poker. Phil is literally the biggest poker player I look up to and to watch his master class is a true blessing. I am going to watch as many times as i can to absorb everything. Really well done and he is a great teacher. Truly great to see a glimpse into how his mind works. I can't wait to attack the felt!

The class has definitely improved my game. Learning how the best in the game thinks is priceless. I would pay for more MasterClasses from Phil Ivey.

I can't say enough how much this class has opened my eyes to how to think about poker, at and away from the table. This class was great!

This class is different from Daniels in that it is more about the mind game of poker and not the Mechanics which means therefore that both should be taken by a poker player. One commentator said it best "Wouldn't you like to get in the mind of Phil Ivey..... ----Tommy Z>



Phil is definitely a man's man. Love how he shows mistakes so we don't make them and can improve our game. Now coming from a teacher, he is a teacher!

Jayden G.

Look, Phil Ivy is one of the best poker players ever to be born but after watching all the lessons he needs coaching on teaching.

Catherine L.

As someone who is new to, but learning, this game, I found this very informative.

Daniel O.

I feel greatly satisfied being able to listen to a great player like PI, and trying to understand his thinking and knowledge is remarkable.

A fellow student

Man that hand with Benyamin and Antonius was well played but they are folding there because that’s Ivey. You make that play you’re getting snapped

A fellow student

About the last spot, when Phil bas 99. turn is check check. So if phil has a monster, like straight, i think he never check river, so check raising represents what kind of monster hand?

A fellow student

10:42. Phil, you say a lot goes into it. We fucking know. God damn it explain. 😂😂 Also when you say “standard bet” explain that too I want to know everything lol

S I.

Why would you bet on a flush draw? (real question) 2:15 He said "if you are the type of player that would have bet on the flush draw". What type of player is that? When should you bet on the draw and when not?

Garry C.

this chapter is very interesting, although i haven't "learned" anything new or that i didn't know, i still love it because you're getting it from Phil's mind and that is priceless information.

J G.

Phil just said something at the start of this video that's particularly noteworthy: "I mean, if you never get bluffed, you're not playing correctly...just like if you never get caught bluffing, you're not playing correctly." I thought the point of Poker was not to get caught bluffing...and to never get bluffed, but Phil says that's incorrect. Perhaps picking certain pots to get caught bluffing and bluff on purpose to sell a story about your play to your opponents is "playing correctly." That will lead to them making big mistakes about you.