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The Grinder Shows Lighter Side In Interview

An interview with Michael "The Grinder" Mizrachi shows a light-hearted family guy who just happens to be a killer at the poker tables.

"Oh, it's always "Grinder." If someone shouts "Michael" these days, I don't even turn around," Mizrachi kidded. The poker star got his nickname "The Grinder" from playing cash games, as an allusion to the play always being more of a grind.

Mizrachi however, despite his unstoppable success as of late, remains modest about his talent at the poker table. When asked how he does it, he casually replied:

Sometimes I don't even know how I do it. I'm like, "Wow, this just keeps happening."

But he admits that it's not always a winning situation, and that's when he checks his play. "Then, when you stop winning you're like, "What happened?" and you go back and analyze the patterns to see where you went wrong."

"But I just like to play a lot of pots cheaply and get a lot of chips early. I make sure I know my opponents too -- whether I can bluff them or not. If you've got a lot of chips you can take the chance and make that bluff, and you're giving yourself a second chance if the bluff goes wrong."

Having a fierce image at the table, many are eager to know if other poker players tend to avoid playing against him or are tempted to take him up to the challenge to put him in his place. "Well, I've got a bluffing image. People think that I can't have a hand all the time, so they look me up. But these days, people are increasingly cautious of me. I think I have a more believable image. But I have to change my style a lot, because people watch me on TV and try to learn how I play."

But while Mizrachi is a huge success in poker, he considers his greatest prize to be outside of the gaming rooms. When asked about the most meaningful success in poker, he replied: The Borgata Winter Open; I won the tournament and 24 hours later, my wife gave birth to a baby girl. What greater feeling is there than winning lots of money and getting the greatest prize of your life the next day?


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