Wednesday, April 26, 2006

What is your goal?

Why do you play poker? It's a question that everyone who plays should have an answer for. Do you play for the competition? Do you play for the rush? Do you play for the money? Can you or do you make a living off of this? Do you play just for fun?

I've really only had one goal since I've started playing for real money almost ten months ago. I wanted to make some extra spending money so I could get one of these.

I want a Big Ass TV for my basement when it is finished. I am working on getting the trim up, and then the last thing to do is the carpet.

I'm not exactly sure which one I will get. It will probably run about $2,000. Though, they did just come out with 1080p DLP's. Though, I would need a HD DVD player, and my cable company does not support that high of resolution yet, so I'll probably just get the 720p version.

My bankroll is high enough now that taking $2,000 out will not affect the limits that I play. I could actually afford to move up it limits again if I really wanted to. I am very close to passing the $6,000 plateau. I had a great session at Doyle's yesterday where I won over $350! I hit quite a few sets, and almost every one was paid off, with a couple pots being around $200! The only one I didn't win was where my opponent also had 2 pair on the flop, and hit his 4 outer on the river. I am definitely liking the play over at Doyles. And, I am about halfway through their sign-up bonus!

So now that my original goal is pretty much met, what now? I'm not sure. I've always been pretty conservative with my money. I don't have many toys, or a flashy car or anything like that. So I'll just keep on playing for some extra spending money. Maybe I 'll get a laptop next. Upgrade the desktop computer. Take a vacation somewhere. Maybe Vegas? In July? For the WSOP Main Event?

Ya, I like that goal. Maybe I'll try and win my way into a WSOP event. Now that would be fun.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

A couple more SNGs

I played in three SNG since my crappy run this weekend. I tried really hard to not break any of my rules. Results were pretty good, as I got 1st in one, and 2nd in another.

Lets take a look:

$22 Speed
Level 1(20/40 blinds). I get AQ on the button. 2 limpers in front, and I raise 4X BB. Both call. Flop is Q95, with 2 hearts. Both check to me, and I bet 2/3 pot. Just one guy calls. Turn is the 2 of Clubs. 1100 in the pot. I bet just under half pot. This was a mistake. I should have bet a lot more, as he probably was on a flush draw. Of course the river brings another heart. He checks to me and I check too. He flips over A3 of hearts. Nice chase dude.
In Level 2, I win a small pot when I flop a set with 66 from the BB. It was just me and the SB.
In Level 3, I'm in the SB with 88. EP raises it up 3.5xBB and I go all-in. BB calls, as does PF raiser. BB has QQ and I go home.

$22 Speed
2nd hand of SNG, I get 99 in the SB. 4 limpers and I complete, so 6 people see a flop of KT9, all spades. I lead out for just under half pot. Next guy min-raises, and two people call that. I just call. Turn is 8 of hearts. Now there are flush and straight possibilities. I check, and flop raiser bets the minimum, and we all call. River is the last 9, giving me quads. I check, hoping someone will bet, but they all check! Grr. Up to 2900.
I win a few small pots, and steal some blinds, and I am up to 4000 in chips with 7 people.
Blinds are 200/400. I'm in the BB with AK. Fold to button small stack (1500) and he goes all-in. SB small stack also goes all-in (only 900). I call. Button shows QT. SB has J9. Flop is AAK. I flop the nuts baby. Turn is a King, haha. River is a queen, and they both play the board, heh.
Chip Leader with 5 left.
Down to 3, and I am 2nd in chips. I get 55 in the SB and bet 2.5xBB. BB calls. Flop is 942. I take a stab at it, but BB raises. I fold and he shows KK.
I fold 66 to chip leaders bet. Not sure about my play here. Pairs are usually hands you want to play with 3 left.
I knock out 3rd place Short stack with KJ vs his A6 when a Jack comes on the river. I now have slight chip lead.
I get A9 and bet. Villain raises all-in and I call. He has J6! A jack on the flop wins it for him. Boooo.
I got out in 2nd place a few hands later with KQ vs his A9

$16 Turbo
I played really tight in the beginning. I didn't play any hands the first two levels. In level 3, I got 88 on the button, but folded to a 5x BB raise. I just didn't think my implied odds were high enough to call and play for a set.
I still played really tight in levels 3-5. I got lucky two orbits in a row when someone got knocked out and I was skipped for the BB. And one time, it was folded to me in the BB. So in the middle of Level 5, I was still just a few chips below starting chip stack with 6 people left.
Stole a BB from the SB when it was folded to me and I went all-in with 89o.
Folded deuces in level 6. Small pocket pairs aren't that great when your M is 5.
Stole the BB again from the SB with Q8o.
Stole with A8o UTG. This table is playing pretty tight near the bubble. I'm no longer the small stack. There are two big stacks, and three of us are between 1200 and 1750.
The two other small stacks bust out. So we are down to three. I have 1750, other two have 8000 and 3800.
Get AQ two hands in a row and get the blinds.
Big stack knocks out the other guy. Two left. I have 1450, he has 12000.
I double up with AK vs K3.
He's not very aggressive. I think I can crawl back and take this thing.
I double up again with AT vs KQ. it's my 5500 vs his 8000.
Next hand I get QQ. He calls my PF bet and my flop bet. Folds to my turn bet. I have the chip lead!
Oof, he takes the lead on a nice bluff. I have Q2. Flop is K86. I take a stab at it and bet. He calls. Turn is a Q. He checks, and I check. River is another King. He goes all-in and I fold. He shows T7.
he has me covered by 600. I get T3 in the SB and complete. He min-bets and I call. Flop is 843. He checks and I bet. He just calls. Turn is a Ten giving me two pair. He checks and I bet again, and he check-raises all-in. I call and he shows pocket Aces, and I win the pot when the river doesn't help!
he only has 600 left on the final hand and I come back and win the whole thing!


I was happy with my play in these three SNGs. I didn't call any raises without a big hand ( I folded AQ - Ax to a raise. Ya!!).

I folded pocket pairs when I didn't have position or if my M was below 5. I think doing this will improve my results in the long run. Once the blinds start getting big, your implied odds just aren't there to call raises with small to mid pocket pairs.

My heads up play was pretty good. I think this is one of my strong points.

And I played pretty tight in the earlier going. In the SNGs at these levels, this is usually the best approach.


Monday, April 24, 2006

Sooner or Later....

13 of my last 17 SNGs prior to this weekend were in the money. None of the five that I played this weekend were in the money. I knew it would happen sooner or later.

I wasn't too impressed with my play in those five. Three of the losses were for sure because of stupid plays by me. So for me to learn from my mistakes, I will go through most of the SNGs I play and try and discover my leaks. I will then create a list of rules that I must follow for playing SNGs.

I played one $27 Turbo at Stars, two $22 Speeds at Party, and two $33 regulars at Party. Here are some quick summaries:

Called a 4xBB raise in Level I with 22. No set.
First hand of Level 4 (50/100). 8 people left. I have 1390. Short stack UTG with 265 goes all-in. Button raise 3 times that amount (to 1100). I'm in BB and go all-in with AQ. Button has KK. Oops. ALWAYS FOLD AQ TO A RAISE!

$22 Speed
6th hand. Still in level 1 (20/40). AK of hearts in EP. I raise 3xBB. BB calls. Flop is AJT, all diamonds. BB goes all-in and I fold. WTF?
10th hand, 9 people left in level 2(30/60). I have 1790 (villain has me covered, and just won a huge pot where he flopped 2-pair. His opponent hit a flush on the turn, and villain went all-in and he hit his 4 outer for a full house). Villain bets 2xBB(120) in MP. I have AK in the CO and I re-raise to 400. He goes all-in and I call. He has KK. Oops.

$22 Speed
first hand and get 22. Limp in. There is another limper and SB raise 5x BB. I call. No set, so I fold to flop bet.
Third hand, and I'm in the BB. I see a free flop with Q9o. 5 people see the flop of Q74 rainbow. SB min-bets, and I raise half pot bet. He re-raised me triple, and I fold. WTF?
Card dead
Card dead
Same dude as above is short stack in level 4(100/200) he has only 245. He goes all-in and I re-raise all-in to isolate and steal blinds with ATo. He has QJo. Flop is AQ6. Turn x. River J. Ya!
Same dude doubles up again with 99 vs AT, so now he has me covered.
Next hand, I am in the BB (200/400). Same dude is in the SB. He calls the SB, and I push the rest of my chips in with A7. He has 77. No ace, and I go home. He goes from 245 chips to 2500 in about 5 hands. Just unlucky?

Level 1, In the SB I complete with 87o. 5 people see a flop of 732 with 2 hearts. I lead out for half pot bet, and I am raised 4 times that amount (pot bet). I fold. Grrr.
I knock out a short stack with KQ with a straight to his AA. Up to 2470.
Level 3 (50/100) I raise 3xBB from the button with KQ. Fold to big stacks push.
7 people left. Level 3, I raise 3xBB in EP with AJ. SB has me coverd and goes all-in. I call. He has AK. ALWAYS FOLD AJ TO A RAISE!!

Level 1, I'm in the SB with T9s. Villain min-bets to 80 in MP. 3 callers, and I call also. Flop is 2, 2, 9. I check, villain bets 100 into a 540 pot. I call, as do three others. Turn is a king. I check, villain checks. Button bets a third of pot. I fold but villain calls. River is another King, so board is 229KK. Checked down and villain wins with 62s!! He raised PF with that crap?!?
Still level 1. I'm in MP with 44. I limp, as does another. Same villain as above raises 5xBB. We both call. Flop is 5Q5, two spades. I decide to make a move for this pot, and I bet 2/3 pot. Villain calls. Turn is the 9 of spades, and I don't think he can call an all-in bet without a 5 or a made flush (I have the 4 of spades). So I go all-in. Of course he calls. What does he call with? A made flush? Full house? Nope. Pocket tens. So I have 10 outs (the two remaining 4's, and eight non-T spades), but none come, and I go home. WTF?

So, what did I learn. AQ and AJ (and really any other Ax where x is something other than another Ace or King) should be thrown in the muck if there is a bet before or after you. Never ever call a bet with these crap hands. They suck.

Also, leave the bluffing to a minimum, especially in the first couple levels. I had no reason trying to try bluff that donk in the last SNG with only 44.

Hopefully the next round of SNGs will go a little better.


I finished off the bonus over at Party Poker. Collecting that bonus off-set the loses I had in the SNGs for the weekend, so I pretty much ended up break even for the whole weekend. I deposited some money over at Doyles Room. I won a few bucks, but gave it all back when I lost with AA against KK and his flopped set. Then a few two outers on the river this morning sent the rest of what little profit I had made right back out the window.

Friday, April 21, 2006


I won a couple more SNGs this morning over at Party Poker. I've been running especially good at them the last couple weeks. While I fully admit to getting lucky sometimes, I think I am playing some pretty good poker and making a lot of +EV plays. Especially on the bubble. Aggression is the key when you are on the bubble. Most other players at the levels I play at are just happy to make the money, so they will not play a hand unless it is a monster. So the person who shows a lot of aggression can steal a lot of blinds.

Over at the website in the SNG forum, a poster got a whole bunch of the SNG "experts" (including ZeeJustin) to go through a $20+2 Speed SNG at Party Poker Hand History that he had played and made comments and give suggestions. Most of the stuff that they said is pretty basic and the "experts" do disagree on a number of things. The most important thing I got from this commentary is to be more aggressive.

If you play SNGs, you should go check it out.

So, In the last 11 days, I have played 17 SNGs. I am in the money on 13 of them (76.5%), and my ROI is 140% for a profit of $550.50!

Party $20+2: 1st
Stars $15+1: 1st
Stars $25+2: 3rd
Party $20+2: 3rd
Party $20+2: 5th
Stars $25+2: 4th (From Chip Leader to out in 4th with 4 people left. Lost with AJ vs 33. Ace on Flop, 3 on river. Lost A8 vs AJ, and lost A7 vs A4 vs T9. T9 rivered a straight to knock me out)
Stars $15+1: 1st
Party $20+2: 2nd
Stars $15+1: 1st
Stars $25+2: 3rd
Party $30+3: 3rd
Party $20+2: 1st
Party $20+2: 3rd
Stars $16+1: 4th (Lost A2 vs K9)
Stars $25+2:4th (Lost JJ vs JQ)
Party $30+3: 1st
Party $20+2: 1st

I am actually a little reluctant to post results here, cause I think I'll just jinx myself. I just have to remember to stay aggressive and try and get my money in with the best of it.

On the bonus front, I am almost done with The Party Poker Bonus. Just 300 more raked hands or so. I still haven't decided where to go to next. There are actually quite a lot of sites I want to play at (FullTilt, Doyles, Pacific) that I have never played at. Plus, I want to get back into BoDog. I haven't played there since they did the ugly software upgrade, but I heard they fixed it, so multi-tabling is better again now.

Good Luck!

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Full Tilt Rakeback

Anyone out there want to refer me to a good affiliate for Full Tilt rakeback?

Are there any affiliates out there that offer greater than 27% rakeback?

If not, maybe a blogger out there can make a little money off me and refer me to their affiliate.

Post a comment, or shoot me an e-mail:


Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Awesome MTT Night!

I was able to play in some MTT last night on Stars. I made the final table in two out of the three I played!

I took 7th place in the WWdN for a nice profit of $42.90!

And then I took 4th place in one of those 20 table $20+2 SNGs on Stars for a profit of $266.00!

I also played in the crazy $10, 55k guaranteed rebuy MTT. I finished really close in the money there, busting out in 190th place.

Add all that with a couple ITMs on some SNGs, and some profit at the NL ring games, and I had by far my best poker day ever. I made just a little over $400!

It was the first time for me playing in the WWdN tournie, and it was a lot of fun. I really enjoyed playing with all the other poker bloggers out there. I wish I knew who was who out there, since most of our screen names are not related to the name of our blogs (like mine). For entertainment purposes, I am going to type a quick report on that tournie. If anyone out there knows the blog website of any of the people I talk about, let me know, and I'll edit this post with some links.

My starting table consisted of: GScottW, Change100, indelibleinc, MrPete, IlliniFan, Sires, and bob labah.

2nd hand of the game, and I get AQo and raise it up. Flop comes JKA with two hearts. I throw out a 2/3 pot continuation bet and get called. Turn is a 2, and we check it around. River is the 6h, and we check it again, and I win the pot.

Still in Level 1, and I raise it up with the hammer. I get two callers, and flop is 9TJ with two hearts. That board sucks for dropping the hammer.

Level 2, and Change100 and MrPete get involved in a hand. Flop comes K64, and all their money gets in. MrPete has 66, Change100 has QQ. Turn is a King. River is a King! Holy suckout!

I win a pot with KT. Inside Straight Draw in the Flop, and its checked around. Straight comes on the turn.

I get KK the next hand. IlliniFan bets, and I raise. Flop is 6JK. He folds to my half pot bet. Up to 2200!

2 hands later, I get AA. bob labah bets PF and I raise. indelibleinc calls, as does bob. Flop is 668. Checked to me, and I bet near pot and both fold. Up to 2800!

It's level 3 and I get moved to a new table. I get AJs on the button and raise 1 limper. SB and limper call. Flop is 7JK. It's checked to me and I make a 3/4 pot bet and both fold.

Still in Level 3, and I limp with J9 of hearts. 4 people see a flop of 8d, Qh, Kh. I semi-bluff with a 3/4 pot bet and 23skidoo calls ( I have him covered). Turn is the Qs, and I put him all in (just 440 more). He shows QT. I have 8 outs (The remaining hearts in the deck minus the 8h). The river comes the Th, giving him a Queens over Tens boat, but it gives me a King high straight flush! Up to 3690 in chips

I sit out for a while to give my daughter a bath. Looks like I got dealt Queens in there. Oh well.

Penner42 flops Quad 4's and busts kaellinn18 who hits a 5 on the river with his 55 for a full house 5's over 4's.

It's now level 5, and I get AJo in the BB. Loaddwnunder raises 3x BB and I call. Flop is 3TK and it is checked around. Turn is a beautiful Q and I win the pot with a bet.

My chipstack is staying around par with between 3000 and 4000 as I am stealing blinds every so often.

We are now down to 3 tables. Someone makes the comment that this is the TV table. We have maigrey, SirFWALGMan, Maudie, wwonka, louddwnunder, Euclides, RandomSam, and weak_player.

We're down to about 20 or so (300/600 blinds) and I get AK in the BB. Folded to Euclides in the SB who completes and I push. Euclides flips over QQ. Ace on the flop and I take it down. Up to 6800 in chips.

Very next hand I get AJo in the SB. SirFWALGMan goes all in from EP and I call. He shows AT. Flop comes 2T2. Turn is another 2. River is a Jack and I bust him. Sorry! Up to 11000 in chips and now 2 tables.

I get JJ in EP and raise 3x BB. GScottW calls. Flop is K33 and I take it down with a continuation size bet.

Its folded to me on the button and I raise 3xBB with AJo. S.t.B goes all-in from the SB for only 475 and I call. He has A7 and my hand holds up and I knock him out. Up to 17k and I think I am in 2nd or 3rd place.

Mene G raises it 3x BB and I have 99 in the BB and I call. Flop is TJQ. I make a half pot bet and take it down.

I take another pot from Mene Gene while I am in the BB. He onlt made a 2x raise and I had 77. Flop 838. Checked down, turn is a 5 and I take the pot with a bet.

Final Table!
Hacker56: 10534
GScottW: 15515
loaddwnunder: 6747
RandomSam: 25735
mean g: 6145
maigrey: 12720
denials: 31765
LuparFiend (Me!): 22394
Maudie: 15445

Denials and GScottW get it all in Pre-flop. They both flip over Aces!

Mene Gene goes out in 9th when his short stack gets busted by maigrey's AQ vs Gene's T3

Hacker goes out in 8th with 77 vs loaddwnunder's AQ. Ace on flop seals the deal.

I'm 2nd in chips in Level 11 (blinds 600/1200). I get AK UTG. I raise it up 3x BB. RandomSam, who is the chip leader raises me a little more than double. I push it all-in and RandomSam Calls with 99. Great, a coinflip :( No help for me, and I lose the coinflip and go out in 7th place.

Now that I look back at this, I should have just called his PF raise. I still have plenty of chips, and if a Ace or King comes on the flop, I can be confident I have the best hand. But if you look at it on the other side, I think RandomSam's call of my all-in was iffy. I mean, I raised PF UTG, and pushed all-in to his re-raise. The best he can hope for is a coinflip with his 99. I could have easily had a high pocket pair with my betting, and he would have been dominated.

Oh well, it was a lot of fun. Hopefully I can play in some more of these WWdN tournies in the future.


In the 20 table $20 MTT, I think I played some really good poker. I was in 19th place out of 19 for a while (The bubble), but battled back a few times. I tripled up twice during the final two tables. Once with Aces where I had a full house by the river. And another time with pocket Tens. When we got to the final table, I was 2nd in chips.

I ended up knocking out the 5th place guy with pocket tens to his AK (Flopped trips), and I was sitting pretty good. I had 52K in chips, and the other stacks were 51K, 79K and 87K. The very next hand I get AQ in the BB (1500/3000 blinds), so my M was still above 10. SB raises it up 4x BB and I go all-in. Of course he has AK. Uggg. So close to a $1000 payday. Maybe I should have just called the PF raise and saw a flop? I still have plenty of chips to play poker.

Thanks for reading!

Monday, April 17, 2006

Past months results

I was going to put up a post detailing my results for February and March, but since they sucked so bad, I'll just give a quick rundown.

In Feb, I made $68.04 playing poker, and $415.54 in bonuses. Not too bad. March was really bad. I lost $455.54 playing poker and only got $326.15 in bonus. So I was in the red for March. Ouch.

50NL: +$135.38
100NL: -$356.10
Various Limit: -$19.50
SNGs (from $6 - $30): -$213.10 (Total of 81) about a -17% ROI

The only sites I won at were Martin's and Paradise.

So, Feb and March were really bad. April is going really good so far. My bankroll is around $4700 right now. I only have 10 more FPPs to collect before PokerStars gives me a $120 bonus. I cashed out of Martin's after receiving their bonus here the other day. I made 830 Euros from Bonuses at Martin's (Signup bonus, plus reload bonus, plus monthly cashback). From Poker, I made just over 700 Euro. So, from Martin's Poker, I made just over 1500 Euro, which is about $1800! I can't wait until there is another 5x B2B bonus out there. I love those crazy Europeans.

After finishing up with the PokerStars Bonus, I'll head over to Party Poker and do their $100 reload. I also plan on depositing over Doyle's Room too. I have a rakeback deal at Doyle's, and I heard the players there are really crazy. I also plan on trying out Full Tilt Poker by the end of the month.

Not too much poker this weekend. I booked a nice win on Sunday playing for a little while. I opened up two PokerStars 50NL tables, and got dealt Aces on both of them! Didn't win much on one of them, but doubled up on the other when some dude thought his 55 was good. This morning I won another $16 Turbo SNG. I was pretty card dead, but still alive with 4 left. I only had about 700 in chips, but there was another short stack to my right. I was in the BB and he in the SB and it was folded to him. He min-bet, and I wasn't going to give up my BB to the other short stack to that, so I defended with J4o. He called with A4. Oops. Jack on the turn kept me alive, and I was in the money on the next hand when he went out I then went on to win the whole thing. You gotta like that!

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Playing the Big Stack

Being the Big Stack in a SNG is nice. Especially when its down to the bubble. And especially when you have over half of the chips. You can be a bully and threaten elimination to everyone else. The odds of the big stack taking first when you are down to 4 and have over half of the chips in play has got to be really high.

I would say that you could play any top 40% of hands. That would be any pocket pair, any Ace, any King, QJ-Q8, and JT-J9 (top 40.65%). But, do not push every hand. You can't have a good hand every single time. And you are going to double up those short stacks in no time, and you'll lose your advantage really quick.

Take for example the SNG I played this morning. It got down to 4 of us. There was me with about 3000 in chips, the big stack with about 8000, and two small stacks around 1000-1250 or so. Blinds were still at around 75/150. Mr Big Stack played like a fool. He would go all-in about 75% of the time. Sure, we all folded the first couple of times, but then we caught on. One of the small stacks called Mr BS and Mr BS showed 74o. Yep, thats a seven and a four. They weren't even suited. And of course the small stack won.

I then made the comment, "Man, you suck as the big stack". He came back with the comment, "You sure are doing good folding all the time". Yes. Yes I am..


Dear LuparFiend,

You finished the tournament in 1st place.
A $67.50 award has been credited to your Real Money account.

Thank you for participating.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

My good run continues

My good run continues (knocks on wood). When will it end? I'm sure pretty soon. I've been doing really good in SNGs the last couple days. My results from the last couple SNGs?

1st place in Party $20+2 SNG (+$78.00)
1st place in Stars $15+1 SNG (+$51.50)
3rd place in Stars $25+2 SNG (+$18.00)
3rd place in Party $20+2 SNG (+$18.00)
4th place in Stars $15+1 SNG (-$16.00)

and the big one:

First place in Stars 45 man $11 Turbo SNG! (+143.00)

This is my biggest cash yet. My biggest cash in a MTT up to this was when I placed 19th in a 600 person $10 MTT (for only a profit of about $30 or so), and I have won a $25 SNG for a profit of $85.50.

I'm not going to lie. I got extremely lucky. I was the short stack for most of the middle rounds. One thing that I did real well, was that I knew when to fold. I had hands where it would have made sense for me to push, but I knew that I would be up against multiple people, so I waited. I'm going to go through the hand history here and dissect my play. Just so you can see how lucky I got.

Levels 1 & 2:
I sat out these two levels (only about 9 hands) because I was trying to feed my son :)
--- Down to 1470

Level 3 (25/50):
I'm in the blinds and call a min-raise in my BB and complete my SB. Fold on the flop.
--- Down to 1320

Level 4 (50/100):
BB skips me (Ya!). I Get ATo in the SB. 1 limper, and I just complete, BB checks. Flop is J83 all hearts. I have none, so I fold to pot sized bet.
88 in EP. I limp. 3 other limpers but BB puts in big raise so I fold.
--- Down to 1120

Level 5 (75/150):
Fold my BB (54o) and SB (85o).
Down to 895. I'm in MP with AKo. 1 limper, and I push. Limper calls and has A2s. Board is: J9T4J. I win.
--- Up to 2015

Level 6(100/200):
Fold my BB to min raise (I had 82o).
In my SB, I'm dealt KQo. 2 limpers, and short stack goes all in for 350. It costs me 250 to call, but I decide to fold. Board is K75K7. I would have split with another person(who had KJ). Oh well.
--- Down to 1715

Level 7 (100/200 a25):
Get QQ in EP and I go all-in (I have a M of 3.5) and get the blinds.
I get J6 in the BB and see a free flop with the SB. Flop is 7JT rainbow. I bet little more than half pot and SB calls. Turn is a King, and we check it. River is a 2, and I fold to his half pot bet. I know, kinda weak, but 2nd pair no kicker is not a hand to be proud of.
Fold my SB (J7s)
--- Down to 1365 (About 22 or so left, and I must be in the bottom 2 or 3)

Level 8 (200/400 a 25):
I'm in the BB with 97o. UTG min-raises, and there are 2 callers. I have only 915 left after I post my blind, and even though I was getting 8:1 on my call, I would be pot committed, and I was pretty sure I couldn't beat 3 others, so I folded. AQ ended winning with two pair.
In my SB I get 86o. I fold to buttons all-in who then shows pocket 5's. Down to 690 and 18 left (2 tables).
Next couple hands, J3o, K2o, K4o, T4s, Q7o, and I fold them all.
Down to 565, I'm UTG with A6o, so I go all-in. It folds to the BB who obviously calls!!!!!! They have 95o! Board is 8228T, so I'm up to 1480.

This was the hand of the SNG for me. I mean, how can everyone (Including the big stack who had 7100 and in the SB, who only had to call 340 [Oh, and who I knocked out in 2nd place]) fold to the super short stacks all-in when I was UTG?!?!?! It was a full table! I definitely got lucky there.

Level 9 (300/600 a50): My M = 1.13
I fold my BB(K5s) to an all-in and another all-in.
I fold my SB(J4o) to all-in.
Down to 430. I've been here before.
There is another small stack to my right, and they go all-in. I also go all-in with J9s. SB and BB call, so there are 4 of us. Those two check it down to a board of: 84Q8J, and the river gives me the winning hand. I was up against: K6 (small stack), 53o (SB), and 55 (BB).
I quadruple up to 1920. Do you believe in miracles!

Next hand I get QJ in the CO, and I go all-in. BB calls and shows KJ. ugg. I'm dominated. Flop is QA9! He has 7 outs (four Tens, three Kings). Turn is a Ten! NOOO! I'm drawing to three outs to split (a King). Guess what comes on the river.

I'm at 2145, and in the BB, I get 77. MP goes all in, and I call. He shows A8o. Flop is 676. I like that flop. I double up to 4790, which is now just below average. We have probably 12-13 left.

Level 10 (400/800 a50): My M = 2.8
We're down to 5 people at my table, and I get JJ in MP. BB, who just has me covered calls and shows AJ. The last Jack comes on the flop, and I double up again to 8730. Opponent comments, "Can you get any luckier?" Nope, I can't. I'm now Big Stack at this table.
I get A2s in my BB, but fold to a 3x BB raise, even though I had him covered (by a little)
In my SB, I get pocket 6's. Min raise by UTG and short stack calls. I should have called here. They show AT and A6. Ace on Flop, Ace on Turn.
Down to final table. One person has 12,000 in chips, everyone else is between 5500 and 7900. I have 7400.

Level 11 (600/1200 a75): My M = 3.0
8 people left and we are on the money bubble. I'm UTG with 77, and I min-raise it here. Big stack goes all-in and I fold. With blinds this high, all it took usually to steal the blinds was a min-raise. It didn't work here.
In the BB, I get QQ, but it's folded to me :(
In the SB, I get AQ. 1 limper, and I just call. Bad play by me, but we were on the bubble, so I figured I could see a relatively cheap flop before committing all my chips. If an A or Q pop up, I will push. BB checks and the flop is 79J. I check as does BB, but limper bets. I fold, BB calls. Turn is a King. Limper takes it down with a nice size bet.
Next hand on the button I get AKs. Folds to me and I push. Short stack SB calls and shows AQ. King on the flop and I win. We're in the money.
--- I'm at 8740

Level 12 (1000/2000 a100): My M = 2.4
I'm in the BB. A slightly bigger stack goes all in and I call with AQ. He shows A9. Board is 2635J and I win. I'm now the big stack with 7 left.
In the SB its folded to me and I push with Q5 and take the BB.

Level 13 (1500/3000 a150) My M = 3.9
BB with AQ and its folded to me.
A couple of the short stacks get knocked out. I knock out 4th place guy with Q2 to his J8.

Level 14 (2000/4000 a200)
With 3 people left, we all had about the same stack sizes. With the blinds so high, we traded chips for a while. First hand of it being 3 handed I get KT, and I raise it. Well, they both go all-in so I folded and let them duke it out. One had KQ, other had J9, and J9 won.
I'm down to 10000, and the SB and get 87o. Button folds so I go all-in. BB who has 30000 in chips calls with 82. I flop 2 pair and turn a full house to double up.
A couple hands later I am small stack (by just a little) and get 99. I push it and get called by QJ. I win the coinflip to take the lead and cripple the other dude. 2 hands later I knock him out with A5 and hit 2 pair.

Heads up went pretty fast. I had 42k in chips, he had 25k.
Hand 1: [43o] He folds the SB
Hand 2: [T4o] I call and he checks. Flop is 95T. I bet pot and he calls. Turn is a 9 and he folds to my 2/3 pot bet. 56k to 11k
Hand 3: [73s] He folds the SB
Hand 4: [JTo] I put him all-in and he calls and shows 89o. Board is Q3QQ7 and I take it home.

It was a lot of fun, and I was extremely surprised I won it all. I hope I didn't use up all my luck on this one SNG.

My cash game is going ok. I doubled up and won a $130 pot when I hit trips on the flop against someone's Aces. I did get stacked once when I flopped the non-nut flush. I played it really fast, and I ended up losing to someone who flopped the nut flush. Ouch! I also tried a little 1/2 limit. Have I told you how much I hate limit? I pretty much played 3 big pots. One was were I had KK. Of course I lose to Aces (Ace on the river didn't help). Another I had QQ. I kept raising it up, and dude with TT keeps calling. Of course a Ten comes on the river. And then another were I raised in late position with KT. I flop the nut flush and play it fast. King on the river, and of course other guy had a Ten and kept calling with his Inside St draw so we split. Oh yes, I love Limit Poker.

I'm due my Martin's Poker Bonus and day now, so that will push my Bankroll well above 4000! Wow. Finally. I've been stuck around 3000 for a long time. It's about time I move up.


Thursday, April 06, 2006

More Home Game Fun

I played in another home game on Saturday night. It was at a good friend of mine who lives an hour and a half away. They have a game every month or so, and I obviously have never played with any of them. The format was a little different. The buy-in was $10. Second place got his buy-in back, and first place got the rest of the money. You would think this would be ok if there was only like 6 people, but we had 12. 10 people were going home with nothing.

We started off with two tables of six each. I played really loose and aggressive. I never got any monster hands, but I won a lot of pots with continuation bets after the flop. I could tell that the guy to my left was getting pissed off with my aggressive play. I got involved in a pot with a less experienced player while holding J9o ( I had him covered). The flop was A, Q, x and I bet at the pot. He called and I was fairly certain he had an Ace. The turn was an 8 giving me an inside straight draw. I bet again trying to push him off his hand and he called again. They river was a beautiful Ten, and I busted him. I don't even remember what I had. I think with that hand, the guy to my left was convinced I was a total maniac.

So a couple hands later, I get A3o and raise it up. Guy to my left re-raises and I call. Flop comes 3, 3, 7. I bet small and he goes all in and I call. I think he had something like KK and I busted him. Muahaha.

When it got down to the final 8, we moved to one table, and I was the chip leader. I didn't get any good hands for the next couple orbits. I tried to steal a few pots, but got played back on. When it got down to five of us, I had lost quite a bit of my stack and was one of the shorter stacks. I made a comeback when I flopped a full house with JT and my opponent turned a straight. I doubled up and was alive again! It got down to three handed with myself, my good buddy, and another guy. My friend had a massive chip lead over us when the biggest hand of the night came. My friend limps from the button and the other dude goes all-in. I fold and my friend calls and flips up pocket Queens. Other dude has AT of spades. The flop came KQ9 of spades!! My friend flopped trips, but the other dude flops the nut flush!%

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Looking at my SNGs

I've been running pretty bad at SNGs lately, so I decided to dig into the hand histories and figure out why I haven't been making any money playing them. Was it bad beats? Was I card dead? Did I play really bad? Just unlucky?

I came to the conclusion that I am card dead. Very card dead. Unbelievably card dead.

I put hands into three groups.
Group 1 hands are: AA - TT, any AK - AJ
Group 2 hands are: 99-88, Any AT & KQ, and any 2 suited broadway cards (KJs - JTs) not listed above
Group 3 hands are: 77-22, and any two broadway cards, suited or unsuited not listed above.

The chance of getting a hand in Group 1 is 5.85%. Getting a hand in group 2 or better is 10.65%. And you will get a hand in group 3 or better 17.0% of the time.

So at the last 11 SNGs (all $15+1 turbos at Stars) I had 1 first place, and the rest were out of the money. A pretty bad streak. This is what I found:

SNGPlace# HandsGroup 1Group 2Group 3Best Hand

Total # of hands: 422
Total in Group 1: 14
Total in Group 2: 13
Total in Group 3: 20
% of hands in Group 1: 3.32%
% of hands in Group 2 or better: 6.40%
% of hands in Group 3 or better: 11.14%

I should get group 1 hands 5.85% of the time. I only got them 3.32% of the time. Only 1 hand out of 30, and it should have been 1 hand out of 17. Pretty big difference.

I got AA 3 times (twice in the SNG I won). KK once, QQ zero, JJ once, TT once. Pretty pathetic if you ask me.

So that is what I am blaming my bad run at SNGs on. Hopefully things will turn around soon.