Saturday, 20th July 2024 13:03
Home / Interviews / Podcast: Lexy Gavin-Mather talks about her life in poker and finding love on the circuit

On the latest episode of the award winning podcast, Poker In the Ears, your hosts James Hartigan and Joe Stapleton, are joined by the multi-talented Lexy Gavin-Mather.

In an extended interview the poker player, coach, content creator, author, and commentator, talked about her start in poker, her years as an online grinder, her first foray into live poker at the PCA, finding love on the circuit, and diversifying into coaching and writing.

There’s an excerpt from the podcast interview below. To hear the entire conversation, check out the full podcast episode here. The interview starts around seventeen minutes into the podcast.

Q: Your first live cash was at the PCA in 2013, where were you in your poker career at that point?

LG-M: So that was either the first of the second live poker tournament I’d ever played. I was so new to live poker that I didn’t know the rules! I was so concerned about getting my change back if I through out a large denomination chip.

But, I had been playing full time on PokerStars since 2009, right after I graduated from college. After Black Friday I did the whole move to Canada thing and started grinding up there. I used to mass multi-table, 24 tables at a time. My boyfriend at the time won a package to the Bahamas and he said “come on let’s go, you can play the ladies event.” So I went and it was a really cool experience. I got to meet Jamie Kerstetter and Maria Ho and they were super nice off the bat.

From that point I got more into live poker, not so much tournaments but cash games.

Q: We don’t really get into the debate surrounding Women’s events on this podcast, but as long as you’re here and you’ve had such a positive experience, you can speak to the fact that it’s probably a pretty good way for an entry level event for women to play?

LG-M: For sure, you know when the topic is brought up about women in poker, one of the commonalities I hear is that they’re intimidated to take that first step, because a poker room can be a very intimidating atmosphere for women. And I can relate, I remember kinda feeling intimidated when I walked into the poker room for the first time. So I get it. I think Ladies Events are a really good gateway to playing in mixed fields, so I think Ladies Events are great. I think PokerStars does a really good job of putting on some nice Ladies Events.

Q: In the ten years between that first cash and now, has poker always been ‘easy’ or have you ever thought about doing anything else?

LG-M: There was a very pivotal moment in my career, I was at a Halloween party in Toronto, and I wound up breaking my elbow that night. I went back to New York to recover and I had no income and the realisation that I have to live outside of the country if I want to make money. So that was a time where I reflected on if poker was right for me and then I discovered live poker, which is a whole another story.

Q: Like many poker players you have diversified, you’ve got coaching going on, you’re writing about poker, you’re making content, you’ve got a YouTube channel. At some point you realised that you need to do more than just play.

LG-M: Yeah, it’s actually really nice being at the point in my career where I don’t have to rely on making money at the tables. Having actual income streams from other places is nice. I enjoy being well rounded, hosting Poker Night In America was a cool experience. Writing a book, coaching it’s all a lot of fun.

Q: I did want to ask you about poker commentary, how was your experience? Lots of people get in touch with me (Joe) about having a career in poker commentary and I want to know what you would say if you were going to give that advice.

LG-M: It’s great, it’s a lot of fun. I also like that I got to learn whilst I was watching the games. When you’re watching really great players you get a different perspective. If someone wants to make a career out of it then great, I don’t know how well it would pay. It’s saturated and competitive, opportunities don’t come around easily.

JH: I’m going to use a poker metaphor. You need to put yourself into a position where you can get lucky. Talent will take you so far, but all of us can say with some certainty that so many things in our lives have come about by being in the right place at the right time.

LG-M: That’s absolutely true, the harder you work the luckier you get. The more you put out into the universe, the more will come back to you. I’d like to think that I was working pretty hard with the vlog and with coaching and it was nice to get recognised for that, because I don’t think I would’ve landed the Poker Night In America gig if I wasn’t putting myself out there.

James Hartigan and Joe Stapleton at the live recording of episode 300 of Poker In The Ears podcast

Q: So speaking of getting lucky, you have achieved something that not many people have in our industry, which is to find a partner in the poker world, who seems to fit in very well with your lifestyle, who is also a poker player. Talk to me about finding love on the poker tour.

LG-M: So I’m just gonna start cheesing, whenever someone brings up Bob I just get super happy. I am married to a poker player/private investigator Bob Mather. Two days ago (at time of recording) he took down the Senior’s event at Seminole Hard Rock. It was unexpected and the best thing to ever come out of my poker career. We were friends for a very long time, we met at The Bike (Bicycle Casino in California), just playing the WPT or something. In the summer of 2019 we just kinda fell in love at the World Series and it’s amazing.

I love that he doesn’t play poker full time. Because a) if he did we’d probably be broke! I’m joking, he’s very good. I joke and say he plays BTO – Bob Theory Optimal – because he has his own unique style. As a private investigator, the strongest part of his game is reading people. He’s so next level with that.

It’s a really good balance. He’s older, he just sold his company so he has a lot more time to travel with me. I’ve dated pretty much only poker players since I started playing poker and it never worked out because they were all full-time. I think I’ve found the sweet spot, he loves to play, but doesn’t rely on it.

A new episode of Poker In The Ears podcast is released every Thursday, check out the latest episode here.

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