Sunday, October 30, 2005

A day of poker to forget

Sometimes, it just doesn't matter what you do. It seems everyone hits their 2 and 3 outers to beat you again and again on the river.

That is how this Sunday went. Every joker that played their J x suited hit two pair on the river. Everyone that needed their Q or J on the river to hit their gutshot straight got it on the river. My A A and K K were slapped silly again and again.

To add injury to insult, I was playing well in the Poker Blue freeroll just to have my A A cracked by A Q by hitting runner runner Q Q to have my aces full of queens beat by quads.

EP raised and I came over the top with a pot sized bet. He moved all in and had me covered by about 500. Flop came x A Q. Needless to say I was shocked to see the case Q hit. Seriously. What kind of idiot moves all in after he was just re-raised with A Q offsuit?

That was hard to take. I would have been the chip leader. Instead I was staring blankly at my monitor.

I give up.

The poker gods don't want me to win this today. As much as I want to get back on the horse and win, I just can't do it.

The donkeys win. For now.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

The Hammer claims another victim

As I have said before, I rarely chat while I play poker. But when the opportunity arises, I love to just piss someone off.

Let's take a look at what happened at Titan Poker on Saturday. Hand folds around to me in the SB. I have the Hammer and promptly raise. BB calls. Flop is A high and totally misses me. Of course, I bet. He folds.

StB shows 7 2

StB: Hammer!

Hammer Victim: smart ass
Hammer Victim: way to make yourself look cool
StB: you have no clue what just happened to you
Hammer Victim: you acting cocky and really having the best hand
StB: dropping the hammer isn't about being cocky
StB: I will let you vent your anger afterall, you just took the brunt of the Hammer
Hammer Victim: I'm not angry..just think it's funny you though you bluffed me..I was behind when I folded
StB:it wasn't a bluff
Hammer Victim: lol ok
StB: I knew I had the best hand
StB: I had the best hand in poker
Hammer Victim: now you are just talking out your asswhich I'm surprised you can..normally something else in it
StB: your tongue?
StB: usually people recover from the Hammer better than that
Hammer Victim:I was behind dipshit
StB:in life too I see
Hammer Victim:I made the right play
StB:of course, you fear the Hammer!
Hammer Victim: you must be 12 tell dad to password protect his computer
StB: you funny
StB: next time I raise I will have the Hammer again
Hammer Victim:you talk a lot for someone who had his ass handed to him a few times (I was up 10BB at this point)
victim leaves table

It was quite fun tilting this guy. I should go find another victim.

Friday, October 28, 2005

The line starts here

Didn't play much last night. I did get in a two table tourney on Full Tilt. I felt cold-decked throughout the game. I defended blinds and hit flops. So when it came time to push with my short stack, I was happy to do so with A Ko. With 3 limpers, I was going to triple up (actually ver close to tripling). Only the big stack called my push. But when I saw A 8o, I had the ugly vision. The vision was reality. The 8 came quickly and that was it. I was done in 8th.

Such is poker. The stupid callers will hit their 3 outer.

But let's talk about stupid television poker. Where to begin? I am willing to form the line. I know it will be a long line too. This line is to have the chance to slap Norm Chad for every stupid remark he makes during the WSOP shows.

Is there any time he may actually give internet players some credit? His stupidity is amazing. The last two players spent a lot of time playing at PokerStars before they won. Sure Raymer also played Foxwoods but honed his craft online. Stop making comments about how bad the internet players supposedly are. Because you are able to comment after the hands have gone down, don't be so pompous on how the players have played them. Hell, I bet the majority of them could beat Norm any and every day. There are some plays I make that I am positive people laugh about. But if they understood what I was trying to do (steal blinds, bluff, etc.) and the timing of the play, it may make sense to them.

The other night Chad made a stupid comment about how internet players are too tied up in defending their blinds. To him it is a stupid concept that just makes them play inferior cards and lose more chips. Not all the time there Chad. I fully believe defending your blind in a tournament can be important. You don't do it all the time but if you have a very aggressive button on your butt, you will need them to stop if you intend to win. Chad likes to make it sound like every internet player if calling raises with 8 3o in the BB. When the time is right, I will defend my blinds. But only when the time is right.

And Lon McEachern isn't much better either. His smarmy comments warrant opening a line to smack him around too. The "pros can do no wrong" attitude of his gets boring quickly. Every time they bluff some one out of a pot, the pro has made a great move. If the amateur does it, they got lucky on a bad play.

So boys, how about getting your head out of your asses and give some of these unknown players some credit. They don't get this far in the tournament on luck alone. They must have some skill to have first won their way in, and two, make it into the money.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Trying to get it going

After playing some unspectacular poker yesterday (no money in two tournament finishing in the top 40% and donking off some cash in 3/6), I had to do something to get back on the horse and be on the winning side.

So joined the $5k guaranteed at Full Tilt. Not much happened in the first session as I chipped on up to about 2.5k. In the second session, I had the deck hit me in the face and chipped to 4.5k.
One hand left me wondering if I had misplayed it. I must have because I don't think I got the most chips off of my opponent. In the BB, I had A Jo. MP had raised the pot. It folded to me. I call. Flop is A A J. I slow play and check on the flop and turn. My opponent bets the turn. I pause then call. River is a rag. I bet about a third of the pot. I do not get called. I wonder if I should have raised on the turn. Do I check hoping my opponent makes another grab at the pot? The river also gave a heart flush. I hate trying to check raise the river.

Meanwhile, I get A Q three out of the next four hands and get more chips with it failing on just one flop. Things are going great until the push monkeys take over. With blinds of 80/160, suddenly everyone needs to go all in for 2500, 3200, etc. Made no sense but the push monkeys were having fun. Little do they realize that they could make more by just raising. Then again, maybe they are scared to actually play poker. One guy could have gotten more chips off of me if had just raised a smaller amount. I was open ended on a straight draw and started the betting. Guy on my left raises 3500 into a 650 pot. I folded though I would have called a smaller bet. I knew he was on a flush draw. But the dope save me some chips instead. Do some play a game other than I were the purpose is to get the fewest amount of chips?

I chug along picking up some blinds but losing them when I have to post. I pull off a nice bluff with 7 5 off in the SB. I smooth called to see a flop of 8 4 3. I have the gut shot and call his pot sized flop bet. Loose? Yeah a bit but I was sure he didn't have anything. He was a push monkey and he didn't push. Turn was a 10. It checked around. River was a Q. I bet 500 and he folded. If I was on the other side, I would have raised on the...

Good question. What would I have raised on? We don't know because Blogger ate the post. You think I would learn by now and type this in Word or notepad instead of blogger.

Let's see what happened. I got lucky to stay alive. I lost a big post when KK was beat by AK. I made the money coming in 18th.

I also talked about how hot Ninya in American Casino is. She has a nice rack and finally showed some cleavage.

Of course, the writeup I had was quite a bit more interesting than the recap, but Blogger didn't want you to read that.

At least I was happy with the way I played tonight. Without some bad breaks, I feel I would have made the final table. Anyway, it is a good step forward.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

I'd like to thank the Academy...

I feel honored to have PokerStars pick my entry for what makes a good blog. I tried to express my thoughts on how I have made some great friends that share an interest in being a better poker player. I soon realized that there are bigger payoffs by sharing with others.

This blog may never be the most popular, the best written, or the most informative. There are links on the right for that. If you are not reading Dr. Pauly, Iggy, the Up For Poker gang, or the Poker Prof, you are missing out on a lot. They are much better writers than I. They have better content. They play better poker.

I am just humbled that people enjoy what I type away here. It started as a way to pass along stories about playing poker to my friends. It has evolved into a kind of therapy, where I can vent or seek help about how to play better.

What it has done is made life better. I have new friends from around the country. I have found a hobby that is exciting, profitable (at least for now), and exercises the brain. Simply put, I am having a blast playing this game and the numerous payoffs that it provides. When you realize it is more than the money, then you are truly winning at poker.

Sunday, October 23, 2005


I fucked up. Yeah, there is no other way to say it.

I fucked up.

I thought the Poker Stars tournament started at 5 CST. Thus when I logged in at 4:30, I was a little shocked that the tournament was well under way.

To add insult to injury, I get K K 2 hands in and push with my tiny count of 245 (blinds of 100/200) and run into A A. I barely had time to talk with BadBlood on my left.

Total crap. I give up. The one tournament I was looking forward to playing and I totally screwed it up! DAMN!

Because I was in the mood to play some poker, I then further screwed up some more at Full Tilt. I had a token for a $24 entry tournament. Without realizing what the prize was, I signed up for a Ultimate Poker Challenge satellite tournament. That didn't start for another 30 minutes so I hopped on a $5 dollar MTT to wait for the other to start.

Why I joined the $24 MTT I do not know as I had intended to use that for a $8k guaranteed MTT. Of course, I pissed that tournament away in record time, last 15 minutes when I tried to run my high cards against the guy who refused to fold his pair of 10s. My A Q offsuit was clobbered even though a K was on the board. Yeah, I could have folded it but I was ticked off.

But I did hit the final table on my $5 buy in. I ended in 8th. Final tables at Full Tilt are still pretty cool with the audience background. I probably should have survived longer but when I tried to go all in on the flop, I didn't quite pull the cursor over to the left before hitting the raise button. So my opponent hit his pair on the river to knock me out. At least I cashed at a final table. And I dropped the Hammer midway through the tournament. My victim had no clue what the heck hit him.

But I think I need to take G-Rob's advice via Otis, and start playing higher buy in tournaments that the $5 dollar jobs. I have some confidence in my play and will never get anywhere playing some of these lower limit buy ins that do not pay that much.

Thus my goal is now to play at least two of the $24 buy ins at Full Tilt each month, if not more. I feel I can do well in these. It is now time to put my skills to the test.

Update: The PokerStars tournament wasn't a total loss. I did get an email saying my entry for a good blog won me a fleece pullover. Thanks Ryan at PokerStars!

Friday, October 21, 2005

Big weekend

Poker Championship

StB will be playing in theOnline Poker Blogger Championship!

This event is powered by PokerStars.

Registration code: 7848011

It all end with this bad baby. Should be interesting to say the least. With over 1400 signed up, I expect this to be a lot like the PokerRoom freerolls. Lots of calling stations and mind boggling calls are on the way.

I will have a snoot full by the time it gets going. Nothing better than playing drunken poker!

Bad read, lucky river

I can't be the only one who notices this. Yesterday while playing 4/8 on PokerShare (Bonus Code Iggy BeerCity), I had an interesting hand go down. On the previous hand, I had raised with A Jo on the button and was re-raised by the BB. Flop came A high. I was check raised on the flop. On the turn I just called fearing my kicker wasn't good and I was up against A K or A Q. The river was checked and I took down the pot with my pair of aces beating his pocket queens. I kicked myself for not betting the river when he checked for two reasons. One, I left a bet out there and two, I could have taken his last $7. Because I knew what would happen on the very next hand.

I was in the cutoff with 6 6. Two players limp and I limp as well. The $7 man, of course, raises (think Seinfeld here "Did you ever notice how someone will lose the majority of their stack and raise the very next hand to go all in no matter what they have?). UTG+1, who had limped, now re-raises. Damn, if I taken that schmuck out, I wouldn't be tossing in 3 bets to see a flop with a pair of 6s.

The flop comes J 9 3. The limp re-raiser bets. I think and call. It seems that every time some limp re-raises, he never has a monster hand. NEVER. I put the clown on A 10 or A 9. Without an A on the board, I think I am ahead, but will see what he does. The turn is a blank. He bets, I call. The river is a beautiful 6. Yeah, I got lucky. But my opponent checks. I bet, he calls and mucks. I check the hand history to find he had A 9 offsuit.

He then goes bezerk in the chat. I rarely pay attention to chat, but every once in a while, I like to toss some fuel on the fire and tilt someone good. I go back and forth with him for a bit until he busts out 10 hands later. I noticed he then went to a 3/6 table. I tried to get on that table but it was full and I waited forever.

I had the right read on him. I was confident he was playing a ragged ace. Little did I know I was behind. But when is limp re-raising in a limit game ever a good idea? I say never. But that is just me.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Who wouldn't play this hand?

You are in the BB in a limit game. MP raises. Two others call. You look down and see 4 2 offsuit. Is there a reason you wouldn't call?

If you hit the flop, chances are great you are taking down a monster. Especially if an A or K is on the board. Best yet, you have the chance to tilt someone or have them think you will play any two cards.

That is exactly what happened to me while playing last night. Flop came down 2 2 K. It checked to the button who bet. But I was the only one who called. That sucked. When a 3 hit the turn, I check raised. I then bet the river and got two more bets out of him. He had A K.

He then proceeded to give me a ton of action. Not respecting my raises and calling down with A or even K high. Nice action for what I believe was properly playing my blind.

Of course it wasn't all rosy tonight. I busted out of a tournament half way through. I had made a nice comeback from 600 up to 3700. I maximized my hand twice to double through on a set and a flopped straight.

But I went out on play that I still can't believe my opponent called. Tell me if he/she played this hand well: UTG limps. I am UTG+1 and I raise it the pot with A J clubs. It folds to the limper. He calls. Flop comes 9 2 6, 2 clubs. UTG bets the min. The pot is at 1300. I have about 2100 behind, my opponent 3700. I push. I figure I represented a big hand preflop and that I don't want him to have a cheap draw. He thinks and calls with 5 5. No help and I am done.

Should I have pushed? If I make pot size raise, I don't know if he gets out of the hand. Is pushing screaming I don't want to see another card? How can they call with two overcards on the board? Especially with a low pair?

Aahhh! Questions. Please, give me some answers.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

What makes a good poker blog? PStars wants to know!

PokerStars is having a contest that I found to be rather thought provoking. They ask what makes a good blog? To make it more interesting and relevant, if you have a poker blog, what makes a good poker blog? So with out further ado, here are my thoughts.


A good poker blog tells you a story that you can relate to and fosters friendships. Whether the purpose is to give you current news, updates on tournaments, trip reports, or the progress of the writer’s skills, if you can relate to what they are saying, you can visualize it in your mind and not only learn by their experiences, you enjoy the tale they tell. You are then going to check out what they have to say on a daily basis. Soon you are leaving comments, then exchanging emails, and finally meeting off in Vegas to meet and play in tournaments.
Let’s translate this to real life. I started reading poker blogs about a year ago. I found some that were more interesting than others. I liked how they told their tournament stories or how they were moving up in limits. The best blogs were those that were honest. They told how they went on tilt and blew a lead or how they dump a large portion of their bankroll by playing- by their own admission- bad poker. They weren’t blaming their results on bad beats, dead cards, or luck. On the other side of the coin, their success wasn’t always the result of superior skill. They admitted they got lucky at times or caught a nice rush of cards.
Even better, they would explain key hands that led to their success or failure. They give you opportunities to learn from their skills or mistakes. They give you tips that can help improve your own game.
Good blog writers don’t brag about winning a big prize or killing a game. They tell their story in a way that you feel like you have won too. Soon enough, they are giving you feedback on your own blog entries; encouraging you on your victories, consoling you on defeats.
You feel you know them personally. They invite you to play on online tournaments so you can meet others that hold the same interest in you. The emboldened take it a step further by setting up a live tournament in Vegas. Even when you can’t make it, you read the stories they have to tell, some the same story told by a different vantage point, that make you feel like you weren’t miles away but were behind them as a sweater. It feels all that much better when you are able to attend the next big get together and meet everyone in person.
A good blog fosters a friendship that can last a lifetime. I have already met some great people by reading their blogs. I hope to see them in December. It will be a successful trip whether I win or lose.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Tournament poker and football

I sat back watching the Cowboys at and playing poker all day. The Cowboys won. Would I?

It started at Party Poker. I started playing the Party Poker Millions SnG step tournies. I played the first one and squandered a lead at the end to finish second. I played the second one and came in second again. If it pointed out anything, it is I need to work on my heads up game. I didn't play that well when it was down to the last two.

So I still have a Step 1 to complete. As I watched the game, I then pulled up Bodog to see what tournies they had scheduled. All the big overlays were over an hour out. But they did have one of their "Cheap Seats" about to start so I put down the entire $1.50 to play. If I would place in the top 6, I could move on to a regular tournament with the ultimate prize being a WPT or WSOP seat.

The Bodog software isn't the best in the world, but it also isn't the worst. It always sounds like an old motor sputtering around. But with the caliber of the player that puts their cash down at Bodog, it is just about always +EV.

This game was different. I folded a lot but pushed the envelope when I could. The calls that these people make are mind boggling. Lots of calling all in with just draws. I chipped up nicely because of that. With just under 2 hours into the tournament, the 127 starters was down to 20. I was the chip leader with just over 21k. Second was at 15k. 3rd was at 8k. I knew I could push with my stack but not be too stupid as to donk it away.

I didn't have much to worry about. I did like how some guy min-raised with his A A. He then checked the flop thus allowing the other guy to catch his straight on the turn. But soon enough, someone would be willing to call down with Q Q and two Ks on the board. Yeah, I was trying to steal it with 4 2o, but how does someone call with that. Yes, call, not raise it back. I would like someone to tell me how his play was good. I was at that table for maybe 5 hands so there wasn't any read he could have.

If anything, it told me how to play him. Heavy and hard. With K 9 in the SB, I saw the cheap flop against him of K J Q. I kept betting it out just to have him call. So I pushed after two rags hit. He folded. I then watched someone else not bet enough to keep him on his draw. Makes me wonder if people pay attention to how others play.

We get down to the final table. My lead is now gone. But I am only in 3rd. There are 4 stacks below 10k so I need to make sure I play my chips well. Especially with the leader on my left.

It is also at this time that the Poker Blue tournament started up. There were 187 players battling for the WPT/WSOP seat.

As I was logging into Poker Blue, one guy got knocked out. There are 8 left. I need to survive two of them to get the second entry. Basically I can sit back and wait on a hand. Which is nice because I am getting crappy cards.

In both tournaments. My Poker Blue is off to a very slow start. Getting nothing there. On Bodog, the small stacks are playing scared. It is rather boring. Thankfully a big stack makes his move on a small one- who pushes on his draw- and knock him out with his pair of 8s.

I can now focus on the Poker Blue tourney. In moving back and forth, I noticed one guy at my table who was playing a lot of hands and calling a lot down. He had moved to over 6k quickly. I set my sights on taking him down a notch.

But instead I dribble some chips off by playing A 8 suited. I raised it up and then stupidly called a re-raise and a flop bet. I should have folded to the re-raise. Now I have a bit of a hole to dig out of. Worse yet, my focus wasn't on the game. I didn't really fell like playing. I try to steal a pot with a turn raise (on an open ended straight draw) but just check the river. WTF? If I am trying to steal I need to make that bet. My opponent won with A high. I then call a raise with 7 7 and push on the flop to basically get knocked out. It was the wild guy I was up against. I figured he had a big A at best. Sure enough. A Qo. So I get back above 1000 to 1170. Now if I can get focused.

Having those stupid Burger King commercials on TV doesn't help much. Is it me or is that king character just plain creepy. Like molest your daughter if he could creepy.

So I continue to not catch cards and fold for a while. Mike, who was at the Bash at the Boathouse, is at my table and talking to me. Of course I am not paying much attention to the chat until someone asks about bloggers. I was laying low until Mike outed me. Not that it matters. I might as well chat if I don't have any cards.

I catch my most loathed hand, A 10o and try to get a pot with a raise. But I fold to the re-raise. I hate that hand! So I feel better when K K shows up but I only get the blinds and a limper.

I get some blinds with K Qo and try to make Presto work but all paint hits the flop. I then get 9 9 and raise it up. I have one caller, UTG who limped. Flop comes K Q 4. I bet it again and he calls. Is he slowplaying me? Turn is a 3. He checks. I bet again and he calls. River is a 4. He checks yet again. This time I check as well. He shows J 10. Interesting. I finally am above the starting stack.

Then the Hiltons come to visit. UTG raises it. It folds to me in the BB. I raise it the pot. He promptly comes over the top and all in. He shows A Ks. No help on the board and I double up. Needless to say, I am a bit more focused now. Except for typing this up.

I take down a good pot with K J clubs. I raised it and had 3 callers. I didn't like the flop though- Q Q 7. Only 1 club. But I bet it again. Two callers. Turn is a club. Not bad. I bet a small amount and get called again. River is a beautiful 10 of clubs. I push him all in- and he calls with 5 5! How dumb was that? Anything on the board had him beat. If you are going to put those chips out there do it right away. Then again, maybe he wasn't focused like me.

I am up to 9th now with 5500. I can push some people around and make a move now. Still there are 69 people left so there is a long time to go. A K suited comes along but it is only the blinds I will get. Same thing with Q 10 suited.

Then the big boys come. UTG+1 I have A A. I raise it like normal but everyone folds again. They aren't thinking I am stealing by raising again? I was tempted to just call or min-raise but that never seems to work well. Plus, I am 99.9% against it.

The table then seems to fall into moron mode. One guy pushes with his draw and is called by second pair. Another pushes on a bluff to run into quad 8s. He then pushes his remaining chips with K Qs to run into A A. Bad part is none of these guys is bleeding them off to me. A guy raises and then re-raises with 2 callers just to show 6 6. It stood up to K Js and A Ks. What the K J was doing in there I don't know. It was bad enough the 6 6 pushed to a raise. The A Ks then went out on the next hand (surprise!) with 7 9 suited. All the while I am folding.

I call a pot raise in the BB with A 6s. Flop gives me two of the suit so I bet enough to put him all in. He folds. I can't get anyone to play with me. But I do notice one new guy at the table who is pretty hyper. I loosen up a bit to see if I can take some chips from him. With K Jo, I raise it up 3xs. It fold around to hyperboy but he folds. The chip leader is in the BB and takes his sweet time to fold. He has seen me raise but fold to re-raises so I am glad he doesn't put a move on me. I try again with A Ko. This time the person to my right goes over the top. They just got moved here. I look and call quickly not realizing that it is over 2k to call. Here is one thing I don't like about Poker Blue. When you go to showdown, you don't see your opponent's cards until the river is dealt. I was happy to see them show A Q and I move up over 10k. I have a chance to do something now with 31 players remaining.

Just before the break, I dump 5k on Q 4 from the BB. I was getting 7-1 odds to see a flop. Flop came K high and it checked around. Turn is a Q. I bet and get insta-called by the original raiser. The others fold. River is a Q. I bet 2k, just under half the pot. He min-raises. I have a bad feeling he has a Q and easily outkicks me. I call to see his A Q. Ouch. Now I have to work my way up again. 29 runners left and I don't want to be number 29 out.

After the break I fold, fold, fold, fold. Until the Hiltons come along again. I smile. But the guy on my right pushes. Hmmm... I call (he has me covered by 300). A tiny stack decides to try and get lucky and goes along for the ride. Nicki and Paris stand tall again knocking A 6 and Q J. Yes the pusher had Q Jo! Yowza! Back over 10k. I then get frisky in the BB with A 8 calling a min raise. Flop comes A 4 5. I check and then push on his bet. Oops. The chip leader. This could be trouble. Fold. Whew! I am over 16k and up to 5. Time to focus some more.

I get A Qo in the big blind. 3 people try to limp. I don't allow limping and raise it 3k. They all fold. Nice of them to give those chips up. On the button I steal the blinds to go over 20k. Then Nicki and Paris come by again. But no flop. Then I get 9 9. This time I limp. Yeah, not a good move but the flop is 5 high. I bet and the BB folds.

We then play fold em for a couple orbits. Or so it seemed. 10 2, J 3, 8 2, 7 3. Fold-a-rama. I see the Hiltons get cracked by 7 7 on the river. The short stacks are pushing and taking blinds left and right. And there is nothing I can do about it. The same guy has his 10s cracked by 4 7 off suit. I finish him of in the BB with 5 7 off with a small call.

But then I make a dumb call with Q 10 suited. I raised it to 4k and was re-raised by the BB. It was another 8k to call. Not a good move as I watched the chips move across the table. Now I am in a bad spot. With 11 left I am in 9th place. Chip leader is over 50k. I have quite a lot of ground to make up. Crap in the BB doesn't help. Worse crap in SB kills me. I then try to get my blinds back with Q J suited. After saying "Don't call" 20 times, the blinds fold. The blinds come around with more crap. Nice to get 3 4 off in both blinds. Being at the 5 person table is hurting my chances. Blinds are coming around fast. Nice of them to all fold for once.

The blinds are 100/2000 and I have 7100. Need to do something and quick. Let's see, 4 9o? No. Not that desperate. Q 3o? Nah. A 8 in BB? Yep. SB had just called so I pushed. He thinks and calls. Q J. His two pair knock me out in 11th place. No final table for me.

It rather sucks. To play that long and hard with nothing to show for it. One bad call killed my stack. Time to regroup and get ready for the PokerStars tourney next week. If I can play as well next Sunday as I did today, I can take some swag home.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Break even

I played about 3 hours on the bad beat tables yesterday at Party. Jackpot was over $500k. I plodded around the 2/4 tables swinging wildly up and down. Net take was $1.25.

Pretty sad, huh?

Shocking how people will call 2 bets with K 4 suited, and then suck out runner runner to fill their flush. Of course, that is with having a flop completely miss you.

I also had my flopped set of 10s beat by the flop set of Kings. It happens. I must have been up against one of the brainiacs because he didn't raise pre-flop with the kings. He did raise me on the flop, but not the turn or river. I would try to figure that out but I would have to lose IQ points to understand why he wasn't betting 4th or 5th street. Saved me money.

Thanks to Beck for giving an opinion on playing the bad beat tables. I totally agree. People will still play their big gapped suited cards no matter how many bets are out there. Last I checked, big gap suited will not win you a jackpot. But no other thoughts on the matter?

It did get me to thinking. I haven't looked but does Party show a history of who has won the jackpots and with what hands? I would really like to see that. I would find it hard to believe that someone's 7 high straight flush beat quads to take it down.

My guess is that most hands are quads over quads or the aces full of kings being taken out by quad kings. I just hope the jackpot is still up there by the time I get home.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Those guys playing on Party are too smart for me

I usually don't pay any attention to the chat while I play poker.

Except at Party.

Those brainiacs kill me. Especially the "experts" that PokerTracker has assigned little fishes to.

These guys were yelling at players who would raise pre-flop. Kept calling them idiots for doing so at a bad beat table. The loudest was one who had Q Q cracked twice because he didn't thin the field out. He was willing to keep limping and losing with good hands.

They keep thinking that they need to let more players see a flop on the offchance that someone gets lucky and lays a bad beat. Their analysis was mindless.

I think that doesn't make any sense. First, people are going to call the raises anyways. They will not fold those suited connectors. What, are you afraid to scare out the one gap suited players? If they are playing those, they will still call. They aren't going anywhere.

My thoughts on any kind of jackpot hand to play the hand normally. Slow play if necessary but don't think that your opponents won't call you. They will.

I would love to hear people's thoughts on

That wasn't much of a party

While surfing around yesterday, I saw that Iggy was back from his tour of the UK. More importantly I saw the bad beat jackpot was over $350k at Party. I had intended to ignore their reload for October but with that kind of money up for grabs, I had to try and get a taste.

All I tasted was shit. I went through a bad run. I played pretty tight until I tilted. My nut straight ran into a boat. My big slick would hit runner runner for the flush. Top pair top kicker would lose to the clown playing 3rd pair but getting two pair on the river. Bottom pair calling down all bets to beat my A high.

It was quite irritating. But those factors make those games beatable. Yeah, I should have kicked myself for capping the turn and river with the nut straight. I figured he had a set. I failed to recognize the full house possibility. That one was my fault. But the majority of the others were not.

Yet bad sessions can change quickly with one big pot. I never got the one big pot last night. Hopefully no one has hit the jackpot by the time I get home. If they have, I will work off the bonus and play some tournament poker. I feel the need to get back into that swing.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Don't know how that happened

Kudos to the PokerStars support team. They got me logged back in. Somehow the date on my pc was reading January 7, 2006.

Don't know how that happened.

Good to see me listed on the tourney page. Now I need to play some tourneys as a warm up. It would be nice to not only win something but take the whole thing down.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Maybe I won't be playing

I noticed something strange that occurred again last night. I tried to log onto PokerStars to check out how many people were registered for their blogger tournament. Note how I said I tried.

It wouldn't let me connect. I had a box that read "Connecting..." but it couldn't get into the network. I sent support an email but didn't hear back yet. I even uninstalled the hardware, played with the firewall but nothing happened.

Anyone else have this problem in the past? Any remedy is glady accepted.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

3rd quarter report

The 3rd quarter was quite an interesting one for me. It started with wondering where to focus my game. Whether I should work on tournaments or ring games. I thought I should go with tournaments because the payoff is bigger and that is where I have done better. But with a pending September trip to Vegas, I became determined to kill some tables in Sin City. After reading Small Stakes Hold Em, I put in all in to play and had terrific results. Couple that with use of Poker Tracker and the quarter was pretty good. I went from $4300 to over $5800 with my online bankroll.

Yeah, there was a bit of bonus whoring going on, but for the most part, it was sitting back and playing some solid poker. My ring game play is much better than it was in June. I popped from 1/2 up to 3/6 and some 4/8. My aggression factor has picked up as well. There are many spots where I may have missed a draw with say A Q but with what the board is showing, I can take it down with the flop or turn bet. Or it has won be bigger pots.

The best part of it has been playing some straight forward poker. I mix up my game here and there when necessary but with the use of Poker Tracker, I have been able to play the players even better. Why I haven't used it earlier is beyond me. It has given me solid information on how to bet some people. And with the "tricky" plays too many people are trying to employ after watching the WPT, it has helped to take down huge pots. Next time you are playing a limit game, count how many times someone slow plays their flopped flush or straight. You will run out of fingers. Unless I know I have Mr. Aggressive behind me, I will always bet these hands out. Just about every single time. Because every jabronie out there thinks you are bluffing. When they see those 3 hearts hit the board on the flop, they think "He couldn't have flopped a flush, he would slow play it". That is when someone is raising you on the turn to take you off your "bluff". They end up capping the turn and paying you 3 bets on the river with their two pair. Seems to happen that way more than not.

My training online paid big dividends in Vegas where I didn't experience a losing session at the poker tables. I did very well in the 2/6 spread game at the Excalibur- even spinning the wheel once. Next time I need to play some higher stakes though. Hitting up the Mirage and the 6/12 is a must in December.

Besides improving my ring game, I also took down one of the next major tournaments in the making, the Good & Plenty Championship. Against a tough field of players, I took down the title and the prestige that goes with it.

About the only other thing to note about the quarter was playing at PokerShare. In about a month and a half I too my initial deposit of $250 up to over $1500. Being a UB skin, there are always player there. Best part is that most are pretty bad. I have played against people that see over 70% of all flops. They suck out to stay afloat for a while but just about always give it back. I may begin to just play limit games there.

As I look on to the 4th quarter, I am once again thinking of what goals I want to accomplish. I would still like to win a seat to a major WPT or WSOP tournament. But I am enjoying the ring games and the money that can be won there. I have played on Poker Blue to get in on the Sunday freeroll for a chance at a seat but lately I have had connection problems with them so getting the necessary 4 hours a week has been a problem. Couple that with football and it is even tougher to sit down at a PC on a Sunday afternoon. I see that Full Tilt will be offering more tournaments soon. I like the software there and enjoy the tournies. Though the structure isn't necessarily the best IMO, I do like it overall.

I know what I really need to do. I need to cut down on some sites and consolidate my money to a couple. I can see using PokerShare for ring games. I may use PokerRoom and Full Tilt for tournaments. For SnGs, I may keep Noble or Titan though that is doubtful. Then there is Bodog where the overlays are always there. The software isn't great but the players aren't either.

So somehow I need to mix in ring games with tournament play and football. I will probably lose a number of buyins on tournies but hopefully make that up in the ring. And maybe somehow football won't suck up my weekends. After reading this, I don't seem to have much of a plan. Guess I will have to dive in somewhere and just do it.

Sunday, October 02, 2005