Just recently, Luiz Fernando Torres was named Best Male Streamer in 2020’s Mundo Poker Awards.
Better known by his nicknames “Luizftorres” and “Poker Raiz”, Torres came out on top and earned the most votes to win the title. He was up against big names such as Daniel Almeida, Patrick Ulysséa, Olívio Gontijo and GGPoker ambassador Felipe “Mojave” Ramos.
Having represented Natural8 for approximately one-and-a-half years now, Torres was the first to start streaming for Asia’s largest online poker room. But how did he get started in poker and what makes his streams so successful?
Torres was born and raised in Santo André, a Brazilian municipality located in the Metropolitan Region of São Paulo. The 33-year-old has a passion for sports and graduated in physical education, before moving on to teach sports initiation classes in schools.
He also enjoys playing sports in his free time - in particular tennis and soccer. Like most Brazilians, he is a huge soccer fan and describes himself as a die-hard supporter of the Palmeiras football club. When not involved in sport, Torres likes going out and traveling with his family whenever possible.
But how exactly did a sports fan end up in the world of poker? It turns out that Torres was introduced to the game by a friend some 14 years ago, when he had just turned 19. And the rest as they say is history.
Torres has been fascinated by the game ever since, and considers himself a pro only at Texas Hold’em - the variant that became very popular in Brazil when he first started out.
His home country has become one of the fastest growing markets of the international poker scene. As to the reasons for that, Torres says, “I believe that Brazilians are very competitive and like a lot of fun. Poker includes both of these two factors. Moreover, for many Brazilians who do not have access to some professions, they see in poker a chance to change their lives by dedicating themselves to it and winning in the game.”
That certainly applied to him as well. Once Torres saw the possibility of turning poker into a job and to earn money, he was hooked.
Things really kicked off for him when he realized there were no streamers in Brazil who showcased their exploits every day. Torres filled in the gap, and his unusual style has earned him thousands of followers on Twitch.
“I saw this chance and some people who knew my profile encouraged me to start streaming. Once I started, I simply didn’t stop anymore and it has been a really fun experience since.”
Torres isn’t the kind of super serious poker professional who uses solvers and throws out technical vocabulary on his streams. Instead, he has a rather simple and hilarious style with plenty of entertainment value, which is appreciated by his 13,300 (and growing!) followers on Twitch.
“I am a funny and authentic poker streamer. I do not try to pass on technical content of the game, but rather provide entertainment for the people who watch. I always say that I am good company for other poker players; I make the sessions very fun,” shares Torres.
He is a firm believer in bankroll management and advises new players to follow that, in order to be successful. He also recommends studying the game regularly and not letting the tilt take control.
His own game certainly includes its own frustrating moments. Torres doesn’t hide his emotions; in fact he openly wears them on his sleeve. “I can get really upset when I take bad beats and that makes the audience laugh a lot. Sometimes the videos even go viral,” the Brazilian streamer joked.
One of these lasting memories - for the audience and Torres alike - included a bad beat that he dashed out to an opponent.
“There were 20 players left in the WSOP Online Colossus tournament, and I got it in with sevens against tens. I was streaming and went crazy at the time because it was the most important tournament of my career. I will never forget that hand!”
Truly understandable, and Brazilian rails in poker tournaments all over the world have long been regarded as one of the best and most supportive. The loud “vamo” (let’s go) shouts can usually be heard in the entire tournament room, if even one of them reaches a final table.
Torres however doesn’t play much live poker and only takes part in big festivals in his home country. He does plan on going to Las Vegas for the World Series of Poker one day, but does not consider it his main focus right now.
When asked about his streaming schedule, Torres says that he usually kicks off the day with sports. He moves on to do “homework” until about lunch time, before hitting the online poker tables well into the evening.
With thousands of hours of content recorded, there must surely be plenty of highlights. So what exactly does Torres consider the craziest thing he’s pulled off while streaming online poker?
Apparently Torres once promised to make a barbecue in the next live stream session, if he was to win the tournament he was in.
“I ended up winning the tournament and had to fulfill the promise. So I made a barbecue in the office, while playing poker and streaming. I certainly never saw anyone being so crazy as to do that!”
While he does not currently offer any kind of coaching, Torres considers his streams an opportunity to pass on good information to new players and the poker community in general. His efforts were duly recognized, with Mundo Poker awarding him the title of Best Male Online Poker Streamer in 2020.
“This title of best Brazilian poker streamer means a lot to me. It was important recognition of a job that I’ve dedicated myself to, and I was very happy and proud of it. I am also very thankful for all the support that my community has shown,” Torres shares.
2021 is off to a great start for Torres thanks to this award, and it coincides nicely with the goals that he has set for himself. Torres wants to continue streaming and growing his Twitch community, and at the same time represent Natural8 - a partnership he considers as having helped a lot in his professional growth.
You’ll be able to find Torres in plenty of the Hold’em tournaments on Natural8 - Asia’s largest online poker room. The Hyper format in particular has become a firm favourite for the Brazilian streamer. You might also get the chance to buy a portion of his action in MTTs, as he frequently utilises the Tournament Staking feature.
Only one thing is for certain; you should always expect the unexpected when it come to Torres. You might have signed on for poker, but you’ll get more than you bargained for in the form of a perfect barbecue roast recipe! Torres keeps things real and fresh, and that’s certainly one of the reasons why this Friend of Natural8 is so popular.