Wednesday, July 29, 2009

When poker and bridge meet

I've had a few readers ask what's the difference between poker and bridge. That's hard to answer, so instead let me direct you to a Barry Greenstein interview.

Most of you have seen him on TV and know he's a top poker player, but Greenstein's also a bridge player. He's a Bronze Life Master who is close to being a Silver Life Master. That means he has nearly 1,000 masterpoints (awards given to bridge players who win at either club games or tournaments).

When Greenstein was a graduate student at the University of Illinois, he was friends with expert bridge player, Karen Walker. She interviewed him in 2005, and he discussed some of the differences between poker and bridge. The interview was published in the ACBL's Bridge Bulletin (my favorite magazine, lol) in the Feb. 2006 issue.

You can read Walker's interview here.

Walker is a regular columnist for the Bridge Bulletin and editor of the ACBL District 8 quarterly newsletter called the District 8 Advocate newsletter. If you are a bridge player who is serious about improving his or her game, do yourself a favor and go to her excellent web site here.


  1. My father was a good bridge player - played on the Polish national team in fact. But all I can remember as a child is the arguments at bridge - perfectly rational people went nuts. So I never learned bridge.

  2. @Wolynski: Yes, that's a big problem for bridge players.

    In poker, it's just you against the world. In bridge, you have a partner so when something goes wrong, there is often fussing (or much worse) about who did the wrong thing.

  3. I thought the last paragraph in the Greenstein article most informative...

    ROFL, Mojo

  4. @KenP: yes, that's why bridge players argue so much as Wolynski mentioned. They have so much ego involvement in their game.

  5. Interesting. Greenstein is one of the pros I have always admired because of his class, as well as, his skill.

  6. Perhaps Barry, known for charity, can solve a problem we have in the bridge world. That is, the greats are dying with their stories untold. We are losing our history. I need a grant to film a rubber bridge game with the old timers telling their stories. Something like Poker After Dark. Can you get this message to Barry? Have him contact my via my site at www dot simplicitybridge dot com

  7. @Chris: he has a web site with contact info: