Maria Konnikova in her new book, “The Biggest Bluff: How I learned to Pay Attention, Master Myself, and Win”, recounts how she became a professional poker player.  She explained that poker is a game that balances luck and skill.  In poker, the best hand only wins 12% of the time.  What happens the other 88%?  The person with the best hand is outplayed by a somebody with superior skill.

A large part of being a successful poker player is accurately assessing risk and reading other players.   Most people are not capable of correctly evaluating risk.  They either overestimate the risk of catastrophic events or underestimate the risk of common occurrences. 

According to Maria Konnikova, personal injury attorneys are the exception.  Personal injury attorneys are usually retained on a contingency fee basis.  They are compensated only if a settlement is reached or a judgment is entered in favor of their client.  Over the course of their careers, personal injury attorneys become skilled in measuring the economic value of their clients’ cases and the probability of obtaining a favorable outcome.  

I recently demonstrated my skills in accurately assessing risk by winning Planet Depos’ 2021 March Madness Bracket Tournament.  I made the bold choice that Baylor University would defeat Gonzaga University in the finals.  My prize was a $100 Amazon gift card.  In Yahoo’s 2021 March Madness $50,000 Bracket Tournament, I finished ahead of 99.3% of contestants by picking Baylor over Gonzaga in the finals; and I won a small amount of money.  

Update: I finished in second place in Planet Depos’ 2022 March Madness Bracket Tournament.  I had predicted that the Kansas would defeat Duke in the finals.  In fact, Kansas defeated UNC in the finals.