With Pokercode Grindhouse 2.0 set to begin later this month, we are featuring original Grindhouse member Stefan “Nemi” Nemetz in our latest edition of “Where Are They Now?”
Nemi just celebrated his 24th birthday this past July, marking five years since he embarked on his bright, and still young poker career. It’s no surprise after talking with him to see the path of success he’s already put himself on, one that is also focused on the future with a big-picture perspective in mind.
In this article, we will take a look at a bit of Nemi’s backstory and what he’s been up to up through the present, following it up with a look onto the horizon and what’s next on his radar. On behalf of the entire Pokercode community, we hope you enjoy reading this article and getting to know Nemi as much as I did in the process!
An original Grindhouse member, Nemi’s link to poker came through lifelong friend and original Grindhouse-mate Florian “Gaugi” Gaugusch. The two grew up playing football together, and shortly after graduating school Nemi found himself with an opportunity to play the game in a formal setting after really only playing occasionally for fun among classmates during while in school.
Gaugi had another connection to poker at the time in Mario Mosboeck, who had begun playing the game seriously as well. Being around the two, Nemi quickly developed an attachment to the game, reading books, studying online courses, and immersing himself as much as possible to take advantage of his free time after finishing school.
Mario, Gaugi, and Nemi frequently studied together, grinded sessions with one another, and ultimately had a ton of fun doing so, which further enabled them all to continue to grow and continue investing their time and energy into the game. Through these years, Nemi created a solid foundation in his game and worked his way up through small- and mid-stakes tournaments, taking great care to bankroll management every step of the way.
The original seven Grindhouse members were all friends prior to entering the Grindhouse. Having prior chemistry from the football field, Grindhouse 1.0 in August 2020 truly provided the group a focused environment in which they could be around poker all the time and allow them to take both their games and their lives to the next level. (Spoiler – more Grindhouse content and commentary to come!)
Fast forward to February 2020 and a handful of the boys had decided to take some time away from the Austrian winter in favor of the paradise that is Costa Rica. After a few weeks on holiday, Mario posed an idea: there was a pretty juicy looking schedule in the near future in Las Vegas, featuring a $5,000 WPT Venetian and the Wynn Spring Classic, featuring a $3,500 Main Event with a $1 million guarantee (that wound up being doubled).
So, everybody went, and here were the results:
In total, the group cashed for more than $750,000 combined – quite the reward for the hard work they’d been putting in, both amongst themselves and with one more integral person to their studies: Leo, who helped the group immeasurably, especially with regards to studying with Pio Solver.
“It was an insane experience,” said Nemi. “I was short the whole tournament and then on the start of Day 3 had an insane start and suddenly I was first out of 24 or something.”
He was actually third in chips at the three-table redraw, with fellow Grindhouse member Roland Rokita (Roli) holding the chip lead. But who was really counting? The big money was starting to come, with everybody having already locked up $26,650 at that point, and they both had heaps (80BB and 110BB).
When the final two tables were reached, Nemi and Roli found themselves at the same table for the first time all tournament. Nemi wound up going card dead for the better part of two hours and then saw his pocket kings cracked by 2015 WSOP Main Event champion Joe McKeehen’s pocket jacks after backdoor gutshot cards got there to ultimately finish in ninth place.
“But I wasn’t really angry about it, or sad,” Nemi said of the ending. “Because it was such a cool experience, and with the whole WPT camera team, final two tables, and nine left. Roli was also there sitting next to me. It was really cool, and I hope it happens more.”
Of course, Roli took third place the following day after having the scare of his life when he woke up that morning. Mattias “Mattinho” Auer then chopped the Wynn Main Event, with both scores going for more than $300K.
“It was amazing. Best trip,” Nemi added.
Over the last couple of months, Nemi has been taking the liberty to enjoy the Austrian summer, his favorite time of year, going on holiday throughout the country and abroad, taking a trip with the Grindhouse boys to Croatia. As such, he has not been playing much, though he has still maintained a level of studying and has played on Sundays.
In addition to playing poker, Nemi is enrolled in University and is studying Sports Management (the same area in which our Community Coach Curtis is also pursuing a Masters Degree in). He’s in his fourth semester out of six total and finds the material interesting to study, given his football background. Nonetheless, it is nowhere near as interesting as poker.
He’s also starting to ramp his game back up with WSOP online beginning and Las Vegas upcoming in the fall, looking to play three sessions a week and increase his studying amounts to go along with it. Football season is starting back up for him in the Austria Fourth Division as well, painting a bigger picture of what Nemi’s life is really all about.
For poker, Nemi’s primary goal for the rest of the year and beyond is to keep improving at the game of poker. He has no money-related goals, feeling like those types of goals are not the best barometer:
As he put it, “I think it doesn’t make sense to have money-related goals because you can ship any tournament or go on a huge sun-run, and then you have a $300K bankroll.” Of course, hitting a huge score may or may not be reflective of skill, improvement, and most importantly, potential.
And on the other side of that coin, he added, “If you win nothing, I think it brings only negative vibes.” Instead, his goals are really focused on studying, spending time with friends while doing so, and being able to use the game of poker as a means to travel with them.
Of course, money is a great motivator; and the money in poker can provide a great lifestyle. But for Nemi, there’s more to poker than the money, namely with regards to the quality of life he cares to live and create for his future.
“That’s what I really like the most, is to talk about the future. I don’t need to be the best poker player in the world – I just want to travel with my friends,” said Nemi. He cited wanting to attend places such as Australia (Aussie Millions), Las Vegas, EPT stops such as Monaco and Barcelona and also looks to visit other places such as South America and New Zealand purely for vacation.
Said Nemi, “And just travel with the boys and experience great things. That’s what my main goal is. I don’t need to be the best player in the world”
Poker is a beautiful game after all – as this author once heard from Ken “Teach” Aldridge, poker can take you all over the world, and it can bring the world to you -- something Nemi clearly has already figured out. We look forward to following Nemi’s journey and hope you enjoyed this article.
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