Friday, June 30, 2006

Insert Title Here

I've probably only played a total of two hours of poker this week. Ya can't grow the bankroll playing a measly two hours a week. I'm going to have to find some time soon.

In the little time I've played the last two sessions, I finally got a couple high pocket pairs. Its been quite a while (1500+ hands, and finally got AA this morning). This is how my last couple high pocket pair hands have gone.

I get QQ at a full ring 200NL table. I raise it up to 4x BB. There are a few callers. The flop comes queen high with 2 diamonds. I bet half pot and the only caller is a short stack who only started the hand with 10 BBs. He flips over A4 of hearts (Huh??!!!?!?!). Turn is the last queen and I waste quads on a small pot. Yipee.

I get AA at a 6 max 100NL table and raise it up 4x BB. One caller. Flop is all clubs. I have none. I bet half pot and get min raised. I call. Turn is the Ace of clubs. I check and he puts out a small (like only 1/4 pot) bet. I call, hoping I fill up on the river. The river is the 5th club. We both check. He flips over KJ of diamonds and we split the pot. Jeez.

I get QQ in the SB and just call short stack bet. Flop is 567 rainbow. I bet under half pot (which is only half of what shortie has left). He puts the rest of his money in and flips over AK. Turn 8, River 9 and we split. The board came out, in order, 56789.

Lots of fun I tell you.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Results of Yesterday's Tough Hands

I ended up folding my Jacks on the first hand. I would love to know what villain had there. Don't you think that if they actually did have a set, and then filled up on th turn (Thus not worrying about any straight draw now), they would have slowplayed on the turn? Sure, there is already $179 in the pot, and we both have only $120 left, but if I was him, and I wanted to make sure I got the rest of the money in, I might have checked there.

Either way, my call of the raise on the flop was terrible. I need to either re-raise or fold. Calling is BAD. I call way too much. It is definitely a big leak I have.


Hand two I ended up pushing (So $80 more for him to call in to a pot that has $150 in it now). I was pretty sure I was behind here, so I would consider this kind of a semi-bluff. I still have 14 outs on the river, and my semi-bluff could possible get top pair crap kicker or lower to fold.

He ended up calling and turned over pocket rockets, uggg. And I didn't hit one of my 14 outs. I did make a note on the guy that he can't lay down overpairs, so I know he'll pay off sets in the future (not that I'll ever see him again though).

You all are right in that I should have folded PF. I guess I shouldn't worry about defending blinds in full ring NL. And I probably should have made a play for the pot on the flop instead of the turn.


On hand 3, I did end up pushing. Villain thought for a long time, and eventually folded. I think I played this one pretty good. I should have maybe bet more on the flop.

So what did I learn here? I call too much. Raise or Fold, right?


On a non-poker related subject, I went and saw Pearl Jam and Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers last night in concert. It was really good. It had been a while since I've been to a concert. Live music rocks! What was surprising about last night was that Pearl Jam opened up first. I would have thought that Pearl Jam was the headliner. Maybe it was a sign of respect for Petty or something.

Pearl Jam was pretty good. The only played for just under two hours. They didn't play enough of their classics. No Betterman, Jeremy, Nothing Man, Yellow Ledbetter, etc... And they played too many songs where my friend and I didn't recognize.

Tom Petty was awesome. They played all of their hits. They even played a song from the Traveling Wilburys which was awesome. Eddie Vedder came out and sang a few songs with them which was totally rockin. I give them an A+


Tuesday, June 27, 2006

A Couple Tough Hands

I had an up and down session this morning at 200NL. I was down a little over one buy-in, but crawled my way back and ended the morning up a half buy-in. I played some 200NL 6 max for the first time. For the last couple weeks, it has been mostly full ring at the 200 level. Higher variance in the 6 max games, but I usually do pretty well.

Here are a couple tough hands from this morning. What would you do?

Hand 1: My very first hand at this table. The Blinds pass me and I post in the CO and I am dealt Pocket Jacks. Meh, JJ is just ok

PokerStars No-Limit Hold'em, $2 BB (8 handed)

HERO ($200)
Button ($176.45)
SB ($239)
BB ($319.45)
UTG ($200)
UTG+1 ($228.75)
MP1 ($390.80)
MP2 ($118.95)

Preflop: HERO is CO with Jc, Jd. HERO posts a blind of $2.
UTG calls $2, 1 fold, MP1 calls $2, MP2 raises to $8, HERO (poster) calls $6, 3 folds, UTG calls $6, MP1 calls $6.

Flop: ($35) 5c, 7s, 4h (4 players)
UTG checks, MP1 checks, MP2 checks, HERO bets $24, UTG raises to $72, MP1 folds, MP2 folds, HERO calls $48.

Turn: ($179) 5d (2 players)
UTG bets $120 (All-In), HERO ??????

This really looks like a set here. UTG limp/calls pre-flop. I am 99% sure they have a pocket pair. But it is possible they could have something like 88-TT. I obviously have no reads here, since it is my first hand.


Hand 2:

PokerStars No-Limit Hold'em, $2 BB (8 handed)

HERO ($206.35)
BB ($200)
UTG ($238.75)
UTG+1 ($316.45)
MP1 ($290)
MP2 ($226.75)
CO ($378.80)
Button ($115.55)

Preflop: HERO is SB with 7d, 9d.
5 folds, Button raises to $6, Hero calls $5, 1 fold.

Flop: ($14) 4d, Kc, Jd (2 players)
HERO checks, Button bets $10, HERO calls $10.

Turn: ($34) 9c (2 players)
HERO checks, Button bets $20, HERO ????

I call the PF raise because this definitely could be a blind steal. And I like 97s for some reason. I flop a flush draw and just call his 3/4 pot bet. On the turn I pick up a pair. What is your line here?


Hand 3: Over at Tribeca on a 200NL 6 max table. I have a double stack. I busted two short stacks a few hands ago with a flopped two pair. And a couple hands ago I sucked out on another dude when he hit a flush on the turn but I filled up a full house on the river. I've been pretty aggressive at this table.

Tribeca No-Limit Hold'em, $2 BB (6 handed)

UTG ($116.32)
MP ($187.00)
CO ($142.84)
Button ($187.76)
SB ($232.75)
HERO ($390.50)

Preflop: HERO is BB with 8s, 9s. HERO posts the big blind of $2.
UTG calls $2, MP raises to $7, 1 fold, Button calls $7, SB calls $6, HERO calls $5, UTG calls $5.

Flop: ($35) Ts, Jh, Qs (5 players)
SB checks, HERO bets $15, 1 fold, MP calls $15, 1 fold, SB raises to $45, HERO ???

I call the PF raise because there were a lot of people and suited connectors do good against a lot of people. I flop the ass end of a straight and have a re-draw to a flush. I am drawing dead to AK of spades, but I can't be worried about monsters under the bed, right? Looking back at this, I am surprised at how little I bet on the flop. I guess it was more of a probe bet to see where I was at. SB check-raise is kind of small, as it would only cost me $30 to call into a pot that has $110 in it already. What do you do here? Re-raise? Call? Fold?


I 'll post results of these hands tomorrow. Hopefully we can get some good discussion here on these hands

Monday, June 26, 2006

Just Gliding Along

Nothing too exciting lately in the world of poker for me. Last week was my first negative week since the end of March. Though if you take away last Sunday where I played a bunch of MTTs (including the Stars Million guaranteed), I would have pretty much broke even. I did win some money this weekend though, and have started off this week good. That's surprising to me though, considering the run of cards I've had the last couple days. Going back to last Wednesday, I've played 1120 hands (That's not much. I haven't played much lately). In those 1120 hands, I have been dealt Pocket Aces a total of zero times, and Pocket Kings twice. Statistically, I should have been dealt each of them five times! Ouch! Heck, I've only gotten Queens three times!

Here is a hand from yesterday that I probably should have played a little bit differently and maybe gotten more value from.

100NL full ring at PartyPoker. I'm on the button with pocket Jacks and a full stack ($100). An EP player bet $3 (3x BB). The person immediately after him raises it to $10. I cold call, as does the EP initial bettor. I figure at least one of them has a higher pocket pair than me, more than likely the raiser. I call, pretty much playing for set value.

So the flop comes a perfect 3c 4h Jc. Ding! I've hit top set. Now, how do I make the most money from this? There is a total of $31 in the pot. The EP guy leads out for a week $11 bet. Only a third of the pot. The other guy raises it up to $28. Now, do I cold call again, and try and bring the EP guy along too? Or do I raise here? I decided to push all-in. The EP guy folded, but the other guy called, and sure enough he had Aces, and I win a big pot.

Now that I think about it, I should have just called, trying to trap the other guy into coming along too. It is definitely possible that he had a hand like Pocket Queens or something along those lines. I guess the reason I pushed was because there were two clubs out there, and I thought that he also could have had something like AcKc. I don't know. What do you think? It sure was nice having position on them.


On the bonus front, I am about a third of the way through PokerStars recent reload bonus. The FPPs rack up real nice a 100NL and 200NL. I also deposited over at Victor Chandler. This site is over on the Tribeca network. I like this network, because there are a lot of crazies there. And I have to remember to play 5 hours over at WillHill! I almost forgot about them! An easy $45 there. June is going to be one of my lowest months in terms of bonus money earned. I just haven't played all that much. And then add to that me busting out of 66poker (B2B network) and quitting on Hollywood Poker, the bonus money just isn't going to come in.

And on another note, the carpet is getting installed in our basement this week! That means I get to buy my big screen TV soon! I just don't know what I should go with though. Plasma or DLP? I guess plasmas have gotten a lot better the last couple months. But they are a little bit more expensive. I can't decide!!


Thursday, June 22, 2006

Bye Bye Hollywood Poker

Not too much going on lately. I haven't played too much. I finished up the Party Poker bonus. But I'm down just over $100 playing on other sites, including Hollywood poker.

I just can't seem to win there. And the 100NL and 200NL cash games play so tight. I haven't had one winning session there yet. I'm down to below $200 from the initial $600 I deposited there. So I might have to do something I've never done before: Withdraw before clearing a bonus. Supposedly these PokerRoom network 5x bonuses are some of the best around. But I just can't take it anymore. I hate this network. I need almost 600 more points to get the $200 bonus. There is no way I am going to do that.

Take a look at my stats over there, all full ring games (I have about 100 hands at 200NL, and about 750 at 100NL):

Total Hands: 848
Vol put $ in the pot: 17.9%
PF raise %: 9.1%
Went to Showdown %: 19.08%
Won $ at showdown %: 54.55% (0% at 200NL!!)
PTBB/100: -19.76!!!

I've gotten Aces only twice, and lost one huge pot with them. Only gotten Kings once. I've flopped my share of sets (Probably about 6 in those 850 hands), but I've only been semi-paid off on one. I lost a huge pot with a set of sixes to a flopped straight. AK is getting destroyed. I don't hit any flops. Its sick.

So I'm done with this site and this network. It will be long time before I go back.

I'll be working on the PokerStars Bonus, and plan on going back to a Tribeca site (Victor Chandler). I haven't played cash games at Stars in a while, so I am curious to see how the 100NL and 200NL games are.


Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Betting On The River

What is the goal of a bet or raise made after the river? The goal is to make a better hand fold and a weaker hand call.

I came across a hand a few days ago that I thought would be a good topic to post about here. I see this mistake all the time at the 100NL and lower limits, and I want to make sure that you don't do this.

The game is 100NL 6 max. I play a pretty aggressive 6 max game. If it is folded to me in the CO or on the button, I am betting at least top 40% hands. If it is folded to me in the SB, I am betting even more hands.

Party Poker No-Limit Hold'em, $ BB (5 handed)

saw flop|saw showdown

HERO ($86.05)
BB ($77.95)
UTG ($101.39)
MP ($98)
Button ($101.50)

Preflop: HERO is SB with Td, 8h. HERO posts a blind of $0.50.
3 folds, HERO (poster) raises to $3, BB calls $2.50.

T8o is a good enough hand to try and steal the blinds. And even if he does call, I'm not hating that either.

Flop: ($7) 9c, 7c, Jc (2 players)
HERO bets $5, BB calls $5.

Cool, I flop a straight. But the flop is all clubs. Yuck. I don't worry about monsters under the bed, so I don't put him on a flopped flush. I lead out with a 3/4 pot bet.

Turn: ($17) 3d (2 players)
HERO bets $15, BB calls $15.

The turn is a blank, so I am liking that. I figure him for a draw with either the Ace of King of clubs. I fire an almost pot sized bet, and again he just calls. I'm pretty sure I'm ahead here.

River: ($47) 7h (2 players)
HERO bets $32, BB calls $54.45 (All-In), HERO calls $22.45.

The board pairs. I'm not liking that as he could definitely have a set that just turned into a full house. Villain has $54 left. I've led at this pot the whole way. I can't slow down now because I don't want to have to make a tough decision if he pushes all-in after I check. So I put out a nice size bet committing myself to the pot and putting the pressure on him. Now if he did actually flop a flush (unlikely) he has to be really worried about me now having a full house. He raises all-in, and it is just $22 for me to call into a pot that already has $123 in it. No way I am folding to that. I call.

Final Pot: $155.90

HERO has Td 8h (straight, jack high).
BB has 8c 8d (two pair, eights and sevens).
Outcome: HERO wins $155.90.

I win a nice pot when he shows pocket 8's (with the 8 of clubs).

So lets take a look at this hand from his perspective. Most importantly his play on the river. What was his goal when he raised all-in on the river? It could not have been to make a better hand fold, that is for sure. The only hand that he can beat is a bluff. There are a hundred hands that beat him. So if he really thought that I was bluffing, why not just call? He just cost himself an extra $22 (22 Big blinds or 11 PTBBs!!). A solid player can make 5 PTBB/100. So it will take him another 220 hands to make up for that mistake. (assuming he is a solid player)

Maybe if our stacks were deeper, and I was re-raised all-in and would have had to call a pot sized bet, I might have folded.

So what's my point? If you really think that your opponent is bluffing, and you can't make your re-raise get a better hand to fold (because there already is a lot of money in the pot), it is definitely better to just call instead of raise. If you can only beat a bluff, don't raise, because you could be wrong, and you'll lose a lot of money.

Look at it like this. You can only beat a bluff.. There is amount X in the pot after the river card is dealt. That amount belongs to the pot. Your opponent bets amount Y. You can do one of three things:
  • You fold: You don't lose any more money
  • You call:
    • He was bluffing! You Win amount X+Y
    • He had a hand. You lose amount Y
  • You raise amount Z:
    • He was bluffing! He folded so you only win amount X+Y
    • He had a hand. You lose amount Y+Z
So, the best you can do is win amount X+Y. You only need to call in order to do this. If you raise, you're not getting any more money, you just might lose a lot more.

I hope this helps

Monday, June 19, 2006

I Should Go On More Vacations

I seem to do really well on the poker tables after coming back from a vacation. A couple weeks ago, we were out of town for a few days, and when we came back, I fired up the poker machine that night and won $600. This weekend, the Mrs. and I went on a short mini-vacation for one night. We got back on Saturday, and after the kids were in bed, I fired up some tables at Party Poker intending to finish off the most recent $100 bonus. I ended the day at a profit of over $800!

And to think, I didn't flop one set in those approximately 400 hands. Pocket Kings was the hand of the night. I got dealt them four times, and made over half of my profit from the night from those four hands. I also won a big pot with T6o. I was in the BB and some dude min-raises to $4 from early position. There were four other callers, so I called too. Flop came TT8. I checked, and the PF min-raiser bets just less than pot. I'm the only caller. The turn is an 8, so the only hand now that beats me are quad 8's. So now I am thinking, "How do I get the rest of this dudes stack?". I check again, intending to check-raise, but I don't need to as the dude pushes all-in for about five times what is in the pot now. I figure he must have the other Ten. I call and he flips over Pocket Queens. No two outer for him, and I scoop a nice pot. What was this guy thinking?!?

Father's Day was awesome. The Mrs. and the kids out did themselves yesterday. I got homemade monkey bread/caramel rolls for breakfast. I got some really great gifts: A coffee mug with hand and foot prints of the kids on it, some chocolate caramel coffee, and some beer. Oh, and I am going to see Pearl Jam and Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers next week. You can't beat that. Then we went to a park and had a picnic, and when the kids were taking their naps, I got to play some poker.

Since I was planning on playing in the Blogger Freeroll, I decided that I should also play in a few more tournies. And since I made some good money on Saturday, I decided to enter into the PokerStars Million guaranteed MTT. I know that this is probably well above what I should be playing. But I figured, when am I ever going to get a chance to play in this again? I hardly ever play on Sunday afternoon. Plus, I made $800 the day before. So I gave it a try. I also played in a BoDog WSOP MTT with the free $135 tournament credits they gave me. And finally, I played another one of those $20 180 person MTTs on Stars.

I made it to the first break of the blogger tournie but busted not too much after that. I played top pair crap kicker too hard and some dude thought that their AJ was good. It was. I'm not a big fan of these big freerolls. For one, there are just way too many people who don't show up and just sit out. You can have a serious advantage or disadvantage depending on where and how many no-shows are at your table. Three of the four people to my right were gone. So that means pretty much everyone who was playing at that table had position on me. The dude who knocked me out accumulated lots of chips from all the no-shows to his left. Free blinds four times an orbit! I know some sites boot no-shows after 15 minutes or so. PokerStars should do this too. Oh well. I didn't expect to do anything in this anyways. I looked at the final standings, and I didn't recognize any of the names in the top 100! Who are these people?

I did better in the million guaranteed. I hovered right around average chip stack for most of the time. I lasted past the 2nd break and went out around 1100th place out of 4500 or so. Top 600 got paid. I went out with Pocket Kings vs AJo. Horray! I probably should have just pushed PF, and the dude might have folded. Blinds were 200/400, and I had right around 5700 in chips, for an M of around 9. I was in the SB with Pocket Kings, and there were two limpers. So I raised to 2000 (5x BB, 3x BB + 1BB per limper is kind of standard) leaving me 3700 behind. One of the limpers called. Flop had an ace in it, and with the pot at 5000, I pushed the rest of chips in. He called with AJ. I'm not sure what I should have done here. Pushing Pre-flop would have been best I think. But check/folding after the flop just because an ace flops just seems really week to me. I made one other mistake earlier in the MTT when I flopped a set. The PF raiser bet almost pot on the flop, and I check-raised all-in (My check raise was about triple his bet). If I would have just called, I probably could have gotten his stack later on. Oh well. It was fun, and I was pleased to make it that far on my first million guaranteed try. And it is nice to know that there are still people at these big MTTs who will call off half of their stack with AJ.

I also took the free 135 in BoDog MTT credits and entered in one of their WSOP tournies. This one was a $125+10 and only 49 people entered (Nice overlay!). I got knocked down to half my starting stack early, but climbed my way back after a while. With about two tables left I was around average chip stack. I made it to final table as one of the short stacks, and eventually went out in 6th place. I lost with Pocket Jacks to KQo (Queen on the river, Booooooooo). If I would have won that hand, I would have been right around average chip stack again. Wow! Pretty damn close to a Main Event seat!

And finally, I played in a $20 180 person MTT. Top 18 paid, and I went out in 19th place. I was in 15th chip stack with 19 left, and got dealt Pocket Queens. Wouldn't you know it, but the BB wakes up with Aces. Yay. I love these MTTs. I'm going to have to play more of these.

So, I didn't cash or win anything in these, but it was tons of fun. I went out in three of those four with KK, QQ, and JJ. I guess if your going to be knocked out, you might as well get knocked out holding a premium hand.


Thursday, June 15, 2006

Details of my MTT score

I enjoy going though my hand histories of some of my better MTTs to see where I did good, and to see how lucky I got. So here is the run down of my top 4 finish in a $20 180 person MTT. I was playing in 3 other tournies at the same time, so I played pretty tight in the beginning.

Level 2: Got to see a free flop with K7s and 4 limpers. King on flop and it got checked around. Third King and I check/call a bigger than pot sized bet. I lead out on the blank river and he folds.

Level 3: On the button with AQo. EP raises 3x BB to 150. I bump it 400 and he calls. Flop comes K65 and through out continuation bet and take it down. Up to 2045 in chips.

Level 4: I get 77 in the BB. Folds to CO who makes it 3x BB. I push all-in and he folds.

Level 5: UTG raises 3x BB. I find AKo on the button and push all-in ( I just barely have him covered). He calls and shows AJ. Flop is QJ2 all diamonds. I have the King of diamonds. Turn is Th giving me a straight. River is a Kc and we chop the pot.

Level 6: Find ATs in the SB. One limper and I push and all fold. I have 2407 in chips.
Level 6: Lose a small pot to a short stack ( he only had 1 BB) with AQ vs 99.
Level 6: Steal lots of blinds. Steal with: TT, JTs, 96s, KTo, KJo

Level 7: Lose a small pot with QJs in the SB when it is checked all the way down. Have 2432. Well below average. Probably in the bottom 20%.
Level 7: Getting blinded down. M is less than 4. I raise on the button hoping to steal with 86o. BB calls. Flop is 943. He checks and I push for just under full pot. He takes a long time and finally folds. Whew! Up to 2782.
Level 7: Next hand in the CO I get A9s and open raise to 3x BB. BB calls and flop is AK3 all diamonds. I bet 4/5 pot and he raises all-in and I call and he shows KT with no diamonds. Turn is a 9 and River is a 6 and I double up to 5814 which is above average now.

Level 8: I pick up AA on the button and it is folded to me and I raise 3x BB. BB pushes all-in. Yay! He has me covered and shows TT. My hand holds up and I double to 11078 which is in the top 10 for sure.
Level 8: I knock out a short stack with A8 vs A5. Up to 13,536 in chips.

Level 9: I'm on the button with K8s and it is folded to me. Steal Time! Blinds are 300/600 with an ante of 50. I bet 2000. BB goes all-in for 5600. So it is 3500 for me to call. I call and he shows KQo. Oops. Board is J77T. So I have 3 outs (a 9 would give me a straight, but him a higher one). River is an 8! Up to 18,000.
Level 9: We are in the money. I'm 5th in chips right now.
Level 9: UTG (who has 12000 to my 17000) raises it up 10x BB! This is screaming steal. And I have AK on the button. So I re-raise all-in. He takes a while and calls with pocket 6's! Ace on flop knocks him out, and I'm up to 3rd in chips.

Level 10: I lay low for a couple orbits and finally pick up a hand. QQ on the button and it is folded to me. I raise just over 3x BB. SB raises all-in (He only has 10 BBs) I call and he shows ATo. An ace comes on the flop, but the turn is a Queen! Up to 36,000 in chips. Good for 2nd place with 14 left.
Level 10: Folded to me on the button and I raise it up 3x BB with T6s. I get re-raises by SB ( I have him covered) and just call. Flop is T85. he bets just over half pot, but I decide to fold. Probably a good move.
Level 10: Probably a dumb play, but I stuck with my bluff here. This is against the same guy who I lost the previous hand too. He's very aggressive:

PokerStars No-Limit Hold'em Tourney, Big Blind is t800 (6 handed)
saw flop|saw showdown

Button (t46569)
HERO (t27683)
BB (t32719)
UTG (t26547)
MP (t19792)
CO (t12391)

Preflop: Hero is SB with 5d, 2c.
4 folds, Hero completes, BB checks.

Flop: (t1450) Jc, 7d, Ac (2 players)
HERO bets t1000, BB calls t1000.

Turn: (t3450) 6d (2 players)
HERO bets t2500, BB calls t2500.

River: (t8450) Qh (2 players)
HERO bets t5000, BB folds.

Final Pot: t13450

Hero has 5d 2c (high card, ace).
Outcome: Hero wins t13450.

Level 11: UTG who has 12,000 goes all-in (which is about 10BB). I have 88 and decide to call. I figured a low to mid pocket pair. He flips over 99. Doh! Flop is KJ5. Turn is an 8. River is the other 8 and I win with quads! Muahaha. I am now in the chip lead and we are down to the final table bubble.
Level 11: Lose two pots in a row with A9 and AT when I meet resistance (and min-raises) on the flop.
Level 11: Still on the final table bubble. I get QQ on the button and raise it up to just over 3x BB. My nemesis from the bluff hand above goes all in (He has 26k to my 44k). I call and he shows AJ. Ace on the flop gives him the massive pot. Knocked down to like 7th out of 10 in the chip count.
Level 11: UTG, who has me covered raises 3x BB and I find Ad Jh. I decided to call, but I had a feeling I was behind. This was my biggest mistake of the MTT. He flipped over Ac Kc. Flop is K32 all hearts. Turn is the 5 of clubs, and I have 8 outs to win, and 3 to tie. The river is a beautiful 4 of hearts and I suck out.

Level 12: Still at the final table bubble. The button, who is the short stack with 10k (I have 40k) raises 2.5x BB. I just call in the BB with A2s. Flop comes AAK. We get it all in on the flop and he flips over A6. 6 on the turn and I double him up. Sitting at 30k chips, which is around 3rd or 4th place.
Level 12: Next hand and the new UTG, who is now the short stack at our table raises 4x BB. I find AJo in the SB and re-raise all-in. He calls and flips over KJs. My hand holds up and I knock out the 10th place dude. Final table and I am 2nd in chips.
Level 12: First hand of the final table, and one of the Short stacks (who had about 10 BBs) raises 4x BB. I find 88 in the CO and decide to re-raise all-in. He calls and shows KQo? Queen on flop, and I lose the coinflip.

Level 13: Getting blinded down and I am in 6th out of 8 chip position. I find KQo on the button. One limper in front of me and I limp too ( I should have raised here me thinks). SB and BB comes along. Flop is KJ7 rainbow. The Short Stack SB goes all-in for only 3 BB more and I am the only caller. He has QT for an OESD. And ace comes on the turn and he wins. I'm now the short stack with only 6 BBs.
Level 13: I find TT in MP and push. Button calls with AK and I win the coinflip!

Level 14: Not involved in many hands in the last couple orbits. I steal a few blinds and have 20k in chips, which is just over 6 BBs. I find Pocket Kings in the CO. There is 1 limper and I push. The button, who I have barely covered, calls. He shows Jacks and my Kings hold up. I'm now in 3rd place with 6 left.

Level 15: Down to five of us now. Not involved in too many hands. Steal with A8 and K8. Try to steal with Q8 but fold to re-raise. Steal another pot after a 2x BB bet in front of me with A9. Steal with TT.
Level 15: Big hand right before this one and one of the dudes gets knocked down to 1.5 BBs and he is the BB. I get KK and he has to call with 73s. My hand holds up and we are down to four and we make the deal to evenly split. Three of us had right around 60k in chips, and one guy had 100k so it was a pretty good deal for me I think.

So, I only had 3 coinflips, and won two of them. Had some pretty good suckouts, but lost a few 70/30's. All but one time when I was all-in and in danger of being eliminated was I behind when all the chips went in (The AJ vs AK hand). And I only tried a few bluffs and all of them turned out good. I guess that was a benefit of playing tight in the beginning.

So there you have it! Cheers!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Chop Chop Chop

Played a bunch of MTTs last night. And I got this e-mail early this morning from PokerStars:

Hello LuparFiend,

Congratulations on your finish in tournament #26419480!
You agreed to a deal at the final table to adjust the payouts as follows:

Official New
Player Payout Payout
========= ======== ======
fishinchips #1 $ 1080.00 $ 629.10
Whipper17 #2 $ 720.00 $ 629.10
damos777 #3 $ 428.40 $ 629.10
LuparFiend #4 $ 288.00 $ 629.10

When the tournament ended, you were automatically credited with
the official 4th place payout of $288.00.

The difference between this amount and the amount to which you agreed
in the deal is $341.10, and this amount has been credited to your account.
You will find this transaction in the cashier history at this time.

Good luck in your next event, and thank you for your participation.

Best Regards,

PokerStars Support Team

WaaHoo! My biggest MTT cash yet! Made the final four in one of those $20 180 person SNGs. When it was down the four of us, we agreed on even four way chop. I was pretty satisfied with that because the blinds were so high by this time, it was a turning into a luckfest. So we all got just below second place money.

I am pretty happy about my overall play last night. I think I brought my A game. I was patient, focused, and I didn't go on tilt, even though I suffered some pretty good beats in some of the other MTTs.

I played a total of five MTTs last night:

The above $20 180 person on Stars.

I played in the $17,000 guaranteed on FullTilt. I had a $26 token, so it didn't cost me anything. I made it to the top 200 or so. Lost with AA vs KK all-in PF in level 2 and was knocked down to below 300 chips, but crawled my way back to starting chip stack eventually. I don't really remember what I went out with, but I was a short stack for quite a while.

Played in BoDogs $6,000 guaranteed for $16. Got some good cards in this one, but the bad beats were plentiful. One particular hand there was an EP bettor and I re-raise with Pocket Kings. Flop is all unders and dude pushes and I call. He has AJ. Ace on turn knocks me way down. I crawl back in this one. Later on I get AK, and same dude calls my all-in bet again with AJ! Flop is QJ2, but a Ten on the turn gives me a straight. River is a King for a chop. Lots of beats here. I'm surprised I didn't go on tilt because of this MTT.

Played in the PartyPoker $40,000 guaranteed. I started out well and had double starting chip stack for a while. I was playing pretty tight and lost a lot of chips in a super aggressive guy who min raised me on both the flop and the turn when I had top pair. Usually min-raises mean monsters so when he did it again on the turn I folded. That hand cost me over half my stack. Damn, and I was playing really well there. Made it to the top 25% of the field in this.

And then played in a satellite for a seat in Party's Million guaranteed. Got good cards and was over average with half the field gone. I ended up losing with KK after all the money got in on the flop to JJ. Jack on river sent me packing.

If it weren't for the PokerStars score, I was all ready to write a post on how I am the most unluckiest dude out there. It was quite unbelievable. I couldn't win any coinflips, and my monsters were getting destroyed. AK vs QJ. A9 vs 87. QQ vs AJ. 88 vs KQ. All losers.

I have the hand history of my PokerStars game, and I always like going through those, so I might put up a post soon detailing that game.

So I'm back up to 10G's. Hopefully I can keep it above that point now.


Tuesday, June 13, 2006


I've been thinking a little bit about PokerTracker and the plethora of stats that it gives us about our poker play. It also gives us a lot of information about other players. But how much should we rely on that information we have on our opponents? Unless you can datamine every single table at every hour of the day, your aren't going to have complete stats on someone. What if they are running bad? What if it was their little sister playing on their account? What if their next door neighbor is Mike the Mouth? What if they moved down to your level to donk it up?

What about data from a couple months ago? Just two months ago I was playing mainly at 50NL. Now I am playing some at 200NL. I think I have gotten better, so my "stats" will be different.

I used to think that those PokerTracker numbers of mine really told me what kind of player I was. Heck, I've made a couple posts over at Bet-the-pot and here on this blog asking about my stats and what people thought of them. I would read posts about what the "ideal" stats are. But I think I am not going to do it anymore.

I was surfing over at yesterday in a NL forum, and there was a thread from someone asking about their PT numbers. His VP$IP and PFR% were different than what most of the so called "experts" would say you should have. But the one stat of his that stuck out in my mind was his PTBB/100. The amount of money he made. It was 6.51 PTBB/100. That's pretty damn good. But one poster even came out and said, "just seeing someone with your stats, I would be isolating you every chance I get."

So let me get this straight. You would target and re-raise to isolate on someone who is a winning player? A winner at over 6 PTBB/100? That's just plain dumb. I don't know about you, but if I am going to target someone, I would re-raise to isolate the losers. The ones who spew chips. I would try my best to not get involved in hands with really good players. And someone who has a 6.5 PTBB/100 is probably a good player.

So what's my point? Don't rely solely on someone's PT stats. PT info is incomplete information. Heck, if you only had PT stats on me from today, I would be at the top of your donk list. Sure, use that information as a guide, but I would rather use the play I have actually observed from them to formulate my reads. So be like Hoyazo, and take good notes. Your game will thank you.

Monday, June 12, 2006

3 Day Winning Streak!

I haven't posted in a while, because Thursday and Friday morning were the same old thing as earlier in the week. And I resisted the temptation to tell more bad beat stories. I didn't want to have to owe all of you a dollar. But, things have turned around finally. I have had four winning sessions in a row going back to Friday afternoon. Up about $450 in that time period, mostly at 100NL, with a few 200NL tables. Almost back to 10G's

I'm running pretty good over at BoDog, having more than doubled my initial deposit of $500. I also deposited over at Hollywood Poker, which is an OnGame network site (Same as PokerRoom). They have a nice 5x $200 bonus going on, which translates to better than 100% rakeback at full ring NL tables. Too bad I can't win there. I'm down about $200. People keep flopping sets against me. If it wasn't for those 3 or 4 hands where this has happened, I would be up. I'll be glad when that bonus is done. I'm not a big fan of the software. And most players are pretty tight. Why play at a rockfest like the OnGame network when you can play with the crazy loose maniacs at Party, Tribeca, Pacific, BoDog and B2B?

I'm going to try and play at night one time this week and get some MTTs in. I still have the 135 tournament credits at BoDog that I should use. I would have loved to use them this weekend in BoDog's WSOP MTTs, as the overlay in them were HUGE! $67.50 to enter running almost every hour, with at least one guaranteed Main Event package each, and most were struggling to get to 60 or 70 people! That is like a $7500 overlay! More than $100 per person. And I could have entered two for free!

I also have a Party Poker bonus to claim, so I'll be playing there some soon too.


Wednesday, June 07, 2006

3 Day Losing Streak

How did I follow up my best poker day ever on Sunday? With my two worst poker days ever. Yep, two of the last three days saw me have my biggest losses ever. Even with my big $600 win, I am down a few bucks this week, though up a little when you consider bonuses (Oh, and the number of sets the last 3 days = 0). And again, my demise today was one big hand. Aces to be exact, and I played them like a donk and couldn't let go of my pretty aces on a very scary flop. I was a 92/8 favorite before the flop, but the dude flopped the nut straight. My god I played it bad. I called his big pot bet on the river because the turn and river paired, and I figured that it was possible he had KQ for two pair, and I would have won with a higher two pair. I am really surprised he threw out such a big river bet, considering that the river pairing the board gave a set on the flop a full house, and I definitely was representing a high pocket pair. So KK, QQ, JJ would have won the pot.

Oh well. Live and Learn.

I think I might go back to my bread and butter game of 100NL 6 max. I seem to do really well playing the aggressive game that 6 max lets me play.

Also of note, I just got an awesome bonus from BoDog. I hadn't played there for a while, but was thinking of going back there soon, but I got an e-mail yesterday saying that if I deposited $100, I would get 125 Tournament credits! Wow. Now I can play quite a few free MTTs there. Thank you BoDog! If you have a BoDog account, and haven't played there in a while, check your e-mail. You may have this bonus too.

Good luck!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Cracked 10 G's on Sunday!

Though I am below that number right now though, this is a pretty big milestone for me. 10 G's!! I started playing online poker exactly one year ago by depositing $50 into a PokerStars account. I tooled around PokerStars from June through August playing limit (YUCK!) and small SNGs with my bankroll always between $25 and $100. The I started taking this little hobby a little more seriously and worked hard growing my bankroll. $5,280 of that 10 G's is from Bonuses. Considering that I was a pretty much a break even player up until March, that is pretty amazing.

So I got back from my little mini-vacation this weekend, and the kids were in bed on Sunday, so I decided to fire up the ole poker machine and put in a few hands at Pacific. In about an hour worth of time, I had my best poker day ever under my belt with a profit of $600! That was from just two 200NL tables and one 100NL table. The biggest pot was a set over set win for me for someone's full stack at 200NL. So when I logged off on Sunday, my bankroll was just a hair over 10 G's.

Since then, I've dropped a little bit, but I've learned a few things from the little downswing from the last two days. Having a calling station (especially one on your left) in a 6 max game leads to high variance. You can definitely win a lot off of them, but you need to catch some cards to do so. I wasn't catching cards Monday morning, and I made the mistake of being my normal aggressive self against this calling station and lost a bit. What pissed me off even more is that he would bleed the chips he won off of me to the other people at the table and eventually busted. I am going to have to work on being more patient with these types of players. I start to tilt a little bit when I am at a table with a few fishies, and everyone but me is taking their money.

And then there were two big hands that I lost where I tried to make some moves and they didn't work. On one of the hands, I was in the SB with QTo. It was folded to the solid player button who limped, and I raised it up, hoping to just steal. Flop came Ten high, and I lead out with a 3/4 pot bet and get min-raised by the solid player. I hate min-raisers with a passion, so I was going to take a stand. I called the flop raise, and when another blank came on the turn, I bet a decent amount again. I should have read the writing on the wall when HE MIN-RAISED ME AGAIN! But instead I pushed, and he showed me the other two tens for top set. Ugggg. I should just have folded. That was terrible. Bad PokerFool! Bad!

The other hand I called a small raise from the BB on what looked like a blind steal. On the 9 high rainbow flop, He bet under half pot, and I raised him triple with only middle pair, hoping to steal it. He thought a long time but finally called. Too bad he also only had middle pair, but he paired his other card on the turn. Just a little unlucky there for me, as his call of my raise on the flop was bad. If it wasn't for those two hands, I would still be above 10 G's

I read something over at that really stuck with me, and I thought I would pass it on to you.

The thing I am realizing is if they are willing to bluff all their chips now they will be willing to do it later too when I have a stronger hand.

Awesome point. I should write this down on a post it note and put it on my computer. And this goes back to my statement above about being more patient. Stay patient, and the chips will eventually flop your way.


Monday, June 05, 2006

May Results

Here are my May 2006 results. Both April and May were +$3,000 months. Wow! At the beginning of April, my bankroll was $2,869.69. At the end of May, my bankroll was $9,304.93. You gotta like that.

I focused on the NL cash games this past month and moved up to playing the 200NL tables, at least part time. I only played 9 SNGs, and lost money there. I also lost a chunk playing MTTs and didn't cash in any. I guess I better just stick to the NL cash games.

Total Profit: $3,024.60

Total Bonuses Received: $1,069.12
  • Doyle's Room: $135.00
  • PokerRewards: $110.00
  • FullTilt: $40.00
  • TopRankedPoker: 345.00 € (about $430.00)
  • PartyPoker: $200.00
  • WillHill: $52.87
  • PSO Gift Cert: $100.00
Total Poker Profit: $1,955.48
  • PokerStars: -$147.50
  • PartyPoker: $183.52
  • TopRankedPoker: $931.19
  • FullTilt: $43.05
  • WillHill: $102.25
  • Paradise: -$40.00
  • Doyles's Room: $527.62
  • PokerRewards: $83.50
  • Pacific Poker: $271.85
No Limit Ring Profit: $2.395.68
  • $50NL: $234.54
  • $100NL: $1,478.26
  • $200NL: $682.88
Sit-N-Go Profit: -$79.00
  • $20+2 SNGs: -$71.50 (Total Played: 3)
  • $25+2 Turbo SNGs: $4.5 (Total Played: 4)
  • $30+3 SNGs: -$12.00 (Total Played: 2)
Total SNG Return On Investment (ROI): -32.9%

Multi Table Tournaments: -$233.70 (Total Played: 9. Cashes: 0)

My PokerTracker numbers show some interesting results.

  • $50NL: 677 Hands: PTBB/100 = 34.3
  • $100NL FullRing: 3918 Hands: PTBB/100 = -2.91
  • $100NL 6Max: 4135 hands: PTBB/100 = 17.98
  • $200NL Full Ring: 1030 hands: PTBB/100 = 16.70
Those are some pretty big numbers. Except for the 100NL Full ring! WTF? Is 6 Max definitely my game? I'm not doing very good at full ring at 100NL, but doing really good at full ring 200NL. Of course, I don't have that many hands in, so that might explain it. But I looked at my VP$IP and PFR% numbers, and for 100NL they are 16.3% and 5.7%. For 200NL they are 22.41% and 10.13%! It looks like I am playing a lot tighter at 100NL. I'm not really sure why this is. I'm going to have to remember to stay aggressive.

I've only played full ring at 200NL, but I think I am going to start playing some at 6 max. I really like playing the aggressive game that 6 max make you play.


Thursday, June 01, 2006

Ding! 9 G's

The ole bankroll grew by $875 in the last 24 hours. I was credited with my TopRankedPoker bonus of 320 Euro (About $400) last night. I only got through just over 1500 VIPs, but they give credit for partial bonuses over at B2B, so that was really nice.

Then I signed up at Pacific Poker through last night. I deposited $500, and this morning my balance was $975. And that isn't even including the $100 bonus that they credit you right away! In about 300 hands total at 100NL and 200NL, I made $475! Not too shaby. It's safe to assume that the players there are truly crazy. On some of the full ring games, the VP$IP was over 50%! Yikes! I think I am going to enjoy playing over at Pacific.

My most memorable hand was this morning at a $100NL table. I get pocket Queens, and raise it up 4x BB. I get one caller. Flop comes Qd, Jd, 3c. I bet near full pot and get called. Turn is the 3d. Bingo! Hopefully he was drawing to a flush. I bet smallish this time, only about 1/3 pot and get called again. Turn is another Jack! Bingo Bango Bongo! I push the rest of my chips in and he calls with J8o. Doh! Thank you very much!

My bankroll is a hair under $9,500. I should pass the 10k mark in the next week or so! Wow!

When I get back from my mini-vacation, I'll have to post up my May results. After April, I thought that I would never be able to match those results again for quite a while. Well, May was just as good, which is hard to believe. I would say that at most, I play 10 hours a week, and if you take my last two months, and include bonuses, my hourly rate is right around $70 an hour. Damn.