We’re excited to announce that Parker “tonkaaaap” Talbot is hopping on the Team Upswing train!
Tonka is widely considered the best high stakes tournament streamer on Twitch, which makes him an ideal choice to create tournament content for members of The Upswing Lab. His first ‘Play & Explain’ video will be available today or tomorrow!
Parker “tonkaaaap” Talbot has been an online tournament player for seven years now and his accomplishments demonstrate that he is a serious force to be reckoned with at the table.
Tonka has over $3 million in online cashes, most notably a 2nd place SCOOP-M finish for $109k and a Super Tuesday win for $101k. On PokerStars alone, Tonka has nearly 3,000 cashes for over $2,679,000. (Statistics taken from Tonka’s PocketFives profile.)
Beyond his poker skills, Tonka’s personable, at times cynical attitude encourages viewers to tune in stream after stream. This short highlight segment–featuring an insane comeback–showcases both:
His YouTube channel features dozens of videos of deep tournament runs. For a relatively young player, he has an incredibly robust highlight reel.
Tonka started playing at a young age. He played 5c/10c limit with his dad online, and World Poker Tour episodes were a regular feature on his living room TV.
When Tonka first discovered No Limit, it was love at first hand played. But his parents were apprehensive of his passion for the game. He eventually left for college with no intention of playing poker.
That lasted four months.
The relatively low gambling age in Canada made poker hard to resist. Trips to Quebec a few times a week to play live started proving profitable, and he eventually stopped attending class as a result. He began grinding live cash close to every day of the week.
Tonka’s parents were surprisingly supportive once they realized he could actually make money. After a few months of live play and intense study sessions, he made the jump to online and found his calling.
Tonka was quick to find success in both tournaments and sit and gos (SNGs). SNGs were his primary game for the first few years, and he was able to reach Supernova Elite while maintaining a positive ROI. At the peak of the SNG ecosystem he was regularly playing $2ks and $5ks–the highest stakes SNGs online–earning over 3 million VPPs in one year.
A wrench was thrown in Tonka’s plans when PokerStars altered their rewards system to make SNGs less viable. Undeterred, Tonka switched to tournaments and never looked back. (He still hops in an SNG or Spin occasionally.)
In 2017, Tonka signed on with 888Poker as their newest ambassador and his Twitch stream has shown no signs of slowing in popularity.
There are lots of players grinding tournaments these days, but very few discovered the passion to love and study the game in the way that Tonka has. He has always stressed that putting in the work away from the table is incredibly important–work that shows in his results.
The work ethic that made all of Tonka’s success possible is what makes this a very exciting time for Lab members–who will be getting an in-depth look at what he’s learned throughout his career.
Doug spoke with Tonka today about joining the team and more. Check it out here:
(Note: Learn to crush your competition with strategies from world class players in The Upswing Poker Lab training course. Click here or below to learn more.)