Friday, September 30, 2005

PP $2 (2500 entrants)

Both Mrs. Columbo and I were playing. We were doing ok until about 60% of the field was gone. We both ran into situations where we lost a big hand (or let go of a loser) and were needing to double up. Mrs. Columbo is card dead until AQs comes to her and PP locks up on her. She was very upset. While I was trying to help her, I myself decided to go all-in (after a UTG raise that I did not notice) with 22. the UTG player busted me with KK. Mrs. Columbo finished a little better as we got her back in after I was busted. She eventually lost a race and was out. All in all, it is very difficult to tiptoe through 2500 players. But, a friend of her's did just that. In his first 2 $1 tournamnets, he finished in the money. Not bad for a play money player.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

blogger championship???

Poker Championship

I have registered to play in the
Online Poker Blogger Championship!

This event is powered by PokerStars.

Registration code: 6892170

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Lotto tournaments continued ($1,$1,$2,$1)

SECOND HAND. Dealt AA (utg+1). Utg bets 4xBB. I re-raise to 9xBB. All fold back to UTG who calls. Flop is 567 rainbow. He checks. I bet ½ pot and he RAISES. I decide he must have a pocket pair (99-KK) and put him all in. He calls with 56o for two pair. He bet 4xBB with 56o Utg?! And the calls the re-raise (with no other calls for odds) and hits the PERFECT FLOP. I will tell you all right now, I will probably fall for this every time. How could you NOT? Finished 2099 out of 2140? How did I beat 40 people by making it to the SECOND HAND?!

$1 limit Omaha (I know I wanted to win a NLHE first, but this was the only $1 tourney open for an hour!) 540 players only. Pays 54.

AAT8 rainbow UtG. I accidentally fold it. Although it's NOT a very good hand I lament its fold.

I fold to a pre-flop raise with JJ23 three suited.

Double suited aces! In the SB. I check a rainbow flop with nothing. A bet and raise force my fold. A set took it. (This will be the only real starting hand I get in the entire tournament.)

Players continue to play garbage hands. 9943? Meanwhile I play 7889 and have to let it go on the flop. End level 1 and I have not seen a turn.

I take a chance (limp) with QQ89 3 suited (very loose). I miss the flop by about 8 miles.

7884 in the BB and Utg raises. I might as well call with 5 others. I flop a set of 8's, but not a good flop. A third diamond comes on the turn and I am done with the hand after a bet and a raise. The board pairs the river and I would have had a boat to beat the made nut flush. At least I saw a turn card. But how do you call 2 bets there with a longshot 9 outer? Seriously, am I SUPPOSED to chase in Omaha with a weak set hoping the board pairs on the river? Is that good play? Did I screw up? Isn't that the same as flush chasing in Hole 'em?

I am folding all danglers to a pre-flop raise. In each case, it proves to be correct. But still, I am not playing hands. Yet another 9982 hand takes a pot.

Level 3 and I have yet to showdown a hand.

NLHE starts table 1 starts.
Dealt TT in SB and call a raise from the button. But the flop has a King and he puts a pot size bet. I fold like a girl. Should have played back pre-flop? In the first rotation? Nope, I feel comfortable in level 1 with "set, overpair or dump".

Omaha : called a raise with AA63 rainbow, hoping to flop a set. Nothing close. No draw, no nothing.

Omaha : I finally play a suited ace and make a straight which holds up and I win my first hand!! It actually takes me to Avg!

O: I have an upstairs wrap and a flush draw and MISS ALL OF IT to lose to trips. ARGH. Back to start stack size and I am below avg. I was probably the favorite on this hand on the flop.

O: I fold the second nut flush draw on the turn vs. two opponents. The flush did not come and I would have lost to a higher 2 pair.

NLHE table 2 starts

Table 2 :limp with A8s and FLOP a flush. Yet, someone inexplicably continues to bet into me. He even calls my re-raise on the river. Um, thanks?

Table 1 is very loose with pre-flop raises. I call with KT and flop an open draw. I lose to AA when the turn and river are blanks.

Table 2 dealt KK : I get the flush draw all in on the turn and the river is a blank. Did I actually put him on the flush? Nope, just did not put him on a set because of the betting.

O: JJT9 and I flop a wrap. I have to bet as I am low on chips. In the confusion? I misread my hand as made and it was not. I am out. 334th. Very disappointed. How do you get past card death in Omaha?

Table 1 : I run a continuation bet with a missed flop and get a call from what I assume is middle pair. I am forced off on the turn. I am critically low on chips.

Table 1 : I decide to take my 88 all-in when 3 or 4 players limp and get TWO callers?! J9s hit a pair and I am out 809th of 2141. Very bad. But how can I blame myself for that play? I would do it again. Sure it's possible to run into limping aces. I could also die of a falling safe. It's up to table 2 now…

But wait! I found a $1 table 3…

Table 3 : AKo raises but get checked raised on a missed flop. Done. Do the exact same thing next hand with AJo and the same limper and take the money back when this time he check-folds.

Table 3 : 3 callers of a 5xBB bet with AKo? What do you do when you miss that flop? Who calls that? At least 2 other Ax hands, that's what. Where the X is less than 9?! AM I crazy here?

Table 2 : I call a 3xBB raise with JTsuited from the SB. The flop is JJ3 and someone goes all in. I CALL. He turns over J3?! For a boat. The river pairs the 3 and we split! His miracle flop and my miraculous rise from the near dead.

A few hands later I run a bluff against this guy when a board fails to produce a 3rd flush card. He folds. I had King high.

Table 2 : I try to push AJo from early position. After 2 callers the SB goes all-in. I am done. What was the monster all-in? 22. He lost to a pair of threes. LOL. (I don't recall an Ace or a Jack falling)

Table 3: now the loosest table in the west. I raise 5xBB from the button with AK and get 4 callers?! And again, the flop is TT8. Action is fast and I have to fold. I have FEW chips left now.

Table 2 and I have QQ in the BB. I get 2 limpers who limp-call the 5xBB raise. The flop is T8rag with 2 clubs, so I bet ¾ pot and end the hand right here. Too much? I don't expect they would chase anyway, but if they did, it would be Ax so I over-bet. In retrospect, as we all know, the better bet here would be slightly less than ½ the pot.

Table 2: J3o calls me down to the river with bottom pair?! I even fired the second barrel on the turn! That hurt. How can he get a read on me, I am watching football?! Not so much a read as reckless me thinks.

Table 3 : flop TP with JT. But my raise gets re-raised. I have no chips left so I call and see KT. I knew what I was going to see, like freaking Nostradamus, but I was pot committed on the flop bet. I finish 558th. This one was such a crap shoot.

Table 2 (the only table left) : A short stack is on the button and its folded around to him. He goes all in, which is about 20% of my stack. I call AJo. He has KTo and misses everything. He must have felt desperate.

The next hand, its folded to me on the button with KQs. I raise 3x and the BB calls. The flop has a K and when he checks, I bet. He folds.

I bluff again. I have KQ and raise 3xBB. The BB calls. I bet the flop after his check and he calls. Repeat on turn. So when the Ace comes on the river, I make a BIG bet. He folds. I ran a risky bluff here, but I assumed that his flop and turn calls were indications of middle or bottom pair. He would see the Ace as being beaten, plus (and this is key), the pot was small enough to let go. I liked my play here.

AGAIN with KQo and I raise from EP 3xBB. K with 2 diamonds flop. ½ pot bet takes it down.

I pick up a pot when 64 in the BB hits bottom pair and it holds up. I had bet for value with the flush redraw on the flop and turn so it was a decent pot. Why was he calling in a tournament, with a SMALL pot, with overcards? I would not have called his river re-raise if an Ace fell.

Escaped from TP when the river was a king (overcard) and the player overbet it. Or did he? The other guy paid it off. Dufus.

BREAK (end level 4) 430 left out of 1240. Avg is 4325 and I have 7170. pays 135 places. I feel good about this.

Call a min raise with KJo in the BB and flop 2 pair. The big stack starts betting into me and I am calling. When I bet big on the turn, he calls! I get skeptical and/or greedy and check the river to see if he will try to bluff me off. But he checks also. I win a big pot, and 2/3rds of his stack. He starts tilting with risky bets. But his AT wins a race with 88 and he is back in action… He doubles up again with TT and I curse myself for letting him get away. He now has more chips than I do. How do they do it?

We clash again, but this time I dump my AJ on the flop of QQ9 when he fires the second barrel even though he was underbetting the pot. I just don't want to tangle with him right now with a bluff. My Q is about 1.9 right now.

My big stack "pal" takes a big hand (from some other poor shlub) when his JJ holds up. He keeps getting big hands. I got 93o. He is far ahead of me when 10 minutes ago, I took almost his entire stack. Volatility is an amazing thing to behold.

I watch QQ, JJ and AA get all in pre-flop. A King and Queen on the flop makes the AA curse (QQ has a set), but it's the runner-runner T9 straight for the JJ to triple up that makes it all laughable. The JJ player is our new table chip leader. Funny, but this guy is going to place now because he got his money in with the FAR worst of it and outdrew not ONE but TWO better hands. Me, I would have escaped the JJ trap here.

My "buddy" (nemesis) wins a big hand with Q5s. Can I be any more sarcastic? My Q is now like 1.3

The two giant stacks (the JJ guy and my "pal") start re-raising my 3xBB raises with all-in bets I can not call with AJo. What to do? Not play AJ I guess. My Q is 1.2 and I settle down a bit. I will have to narrow my starting hands from EP with BOTH of these large stacks on my right. It's a little late in the tournament to be playing AJ from EP anyways.

I reluctantly fold the J of clubs on a 4 flush board with a Q on it. Two other players both had me beat with the Ace and the King. I had TP on the flop and was ahead when I bet it. But the 4th club came on the turn and I had the worst of it. Now, my Q is .8 and it sucks.

I miss an opportunity to call an all-in short stack for only 4xBB with J8o from the button. The BB makes the call. I would have hit 2 pair.

I get pushed off of a missed flop with AQo. I had made the 3xBB raise from MP and the player on my left calls. When the flop misses me, I normally would fire out. But something did not sit right. I checked. When he bet, I folded. I am now in trouble…

BREAK 2 - 155 players left. 20 spots to the money.

I win a small hand with 9T from the BB. I think I flopped TP.

This time I fold AJo in the SB to a raise. Getting smarter, eh?

144 left, 9 to the money.

Fold, fold, 142 left.

Someone's KK knocks out another player's TP. 141 left. I don't know how he did not see this coming.

I fold T9o from EP. The BB gets a walk. I regret nothing, but that is tight.

I call from UtG with 88. This was poor play, but I was willing to fold on a big raise. Normally, this would be a 3xBB raise from Utg because otherwise you are asked for the raise this late. I was surprised when it did not come. If it was 5xBB total or less to go, I intended to call it and hope for a good plop. The flop comes AAx. I check down vs. this big stack and I win. How does he let me get away with that? He limped with garbage. Had I raised, he may never have even called. I fold my BB when I miss the flop to his post flop bet the very next hand based on this information.

I get TT with 136 players left and call a raise. Flop AKQ. I fold to his continuation bet. Someone else calls. Good luck with that.

We are 1 out of the money and the tables go hand to hand. The smallest stack is currently all-in or something because it's listed as zero. When the wait is over, not 1 but 4 players bust out and I make the money for the first time ever. I did it. I cracked this stoopid glass ceiling lotto tournament. I feel little elation though, sort of like bad sex.

No more money until 99th, so its time to play hard. As I type this I get QQ. I am going all in… I get called by KK!. He hits a boat and I finish 130th. Isn't that the way? If the QQ runs into AK instead, and wins the race, I may make 99. Better luck next time?

So, I finish my two day adventure having spent about $9 bucks to win $2.48, but it was worth it.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Goal #2, placing in the money in a PS $1 tournament

3 PS LOTTO TOURNAMENTS ($1, $2, $1) (skipped the $3 tournament if you can believe that!)

Table 1 : Missed a flush draw with 54s. Winner had TP and underbet both streets, so I called on odds. Ugh.

Table 1: I almost quadrupled up when KK got calls from JJ and 22 AFTER the flop of 3T3. What is wrong with the 22 person? He RERAISED! Awesome.

Now the second table starts. The third starts in another 15 minutes.

Table 2, someone calls my boat with a straight and I double up.

Table 3 starts. All open on the laptop…

Lots of folding right now…

Table 1: Had TP on a dangerous board and had to release. But lost a good 15% of my stack first. When you are beat by the board, then you are beat.

Table 3 : out raced QQ with AKs to double up (flush).

Still lots of limping on my part. Not ready to notch it up yet. Also not playing garbage like A6.

Played 62 too slow from the BB when 22J flopped. A backdoor flush became possible and the all-in bet came and made me fold.

Lost two more hands with TP and fell below avg.

Need to double up at all three tables. Blinds are getting up there…

Tried a move at table 3 and the ginormous stack in the BB re-raised me. Ugh. Table 1 break.

Played back at someone (table 2) bullying me with what I thought was AK. Turns out it was K7 and my A high took the pot! I could have bet the turn and he would have folded.

Doubled up at table 2 in a race. My TT was re-raised all-in by AK. I took the race. He made a flush, I made a boat! Table 2 goes on break. Need to double up at 1 and 3 still.

At Table 1 I doubled up when I re-raised all-in with JJ. Got called by AQ. Flop 66Q, but the turn was a J! Just my day for boats I guess!

Anemic on table 3 with a Q of .75

My 77 escapes from a raiser. The flop had an Ace and I fold to his big bet. He actually shows the A9s. (which table?) Who re-raises a 3xBB raise from MP with A9?

Table 3 still alive when my 84s in the BB flops a flush.

Ran a nice bluff with KQ at table 1 after calling a big pre-flop raise and then betting out after the flop when the raiser checks. I had no piece of it. Table 3 on break. Table 1 I am back to avg. Table 2 I am still above avg. Table 3, well… still a Q of .75. Lots of big stacks at table 1.

Table 1 : I am out 302/1344 (paid 135) after my AQ flops an Ace and was up against AK. Even though I figured it out on the turn, it was too late to get away (is that true?). I figure it was just as likely that he had AJ. (is that true?) I made the read I was beat, but could not make the weak tight laydown. At the SAME time, I double up at table 3. I had AK and someone raised me or something. I did not even see, just the chips pushed to me after I put him all in.

I get BLUFFED off my 2 pair on table 2 by the big stack. I have 9T and the board is 579TJ. He bets 75% of my stack and I fold like a little girl. All he needed was an 8. He had A6 with a broken flush draw. I don’t know how I make that call, and yet I called the AK with my AQ. Right or wrong, I had no read on the player so what can I do?

Table 2, Q is 1.3, Table 3, Q is .8

Table 3: board is 29K and I have KJ, I re-raise the other player and he calls time… He folds. My Q is 1.1 at table 2, 1.2 at table 3

Table 3: player makes it 3xBB, cutoff calls, I call in BB with 99. The flop is A6A and he bets and cutoff calls. I fold. The turn was a King. A full house won the hand.

Table 3: My AJ calls a re-raise all-in from a short stack with 99. He hits a nine. Ugh. Q is .8

Table 3: Made a dumb bet at a small pot vs. 4 opponents and got lucky they all folded. Stupid really.

Table 3: JJ in Utg +2 and Utg makes it 2x and UTG+1 makes it 6x. I CALL IT. 2xer folds so we are heads up and I am in position. AT7 all diamonds and me with the Jd. He bets 1000, I smooth call. Turn 9 clubs. H goes all in. I have 2880 left, I might as well gamble here. He had AK with NO diamond. The river is a diamond. Funny, his picture was Gus Hanson. That’s 3 JJ hands at table 3 tonight and they all won. Q is down to .6 at table 2. Its 1.75 at table 3.

Table 3: Accidentally called from SB with K2 and the flop is AK2 rainbow. Lost a 3rd of my stack to a set of ducks. Q is like .9. I win the next hand to get back to a Q of 1.

Table 2 : ran down a underbetter with Middle pair. He had TP with a weak kicker. Ugh. Below .5 Q on table 2.

Table 3: called a short stack all in on his stop and go. I had 44 and the flop is Q32. He had a Queen. This was probably my WORST call of the night. I basically could only beat the bluff and I put him on a panic bet. My Q is still 1 though so I figured the call was excusable. But I am not happy with it.

Can only move all-in now at table 2? No because M is 10. But I am going to bleed to death here. Just then, the blinds double. Never mind the M now as its been reduced to 5 (RED ZONE). I can maybe go one more orbit before becoming a move in specialist. I call a BB with 89. The ginormous stack kicks me off. Now its MIS time for sure. (I get 98 at table 3.)

Table 3 : with 5 players I put it ALL in on the flush draw QT. I get a caller. And another with the K9 flush draw. And that’s about it from table 3 as I am drawing dead. (The flush did hit.) I just have to lose life support on one last hand. 1077 players, paid 99. A9 runs in to AJ and I finish 213.

Try to blind steal at table 2 with QTo and get away with it. I get the same hand again and fold it. 1203 players, pays 135. And my Q is .3 with 190 left.

KQo in the BB and I call and all-in from the button short stack (no others in). He had A8o. Ace on flop. I finish … hmm wait… I have $30 left. Now $190 left, Now $980 left, BREAK. There are 170 left. I can play maybe one more hand with the antes. Either I go all-in on the first one after the break or the second one. A5o gets me to put all my money in FTA and I lose to ATo caller. 166th place.

The money finish in a $1 tournament STILL eludes me. Soon… Then, its my next goal, Omaha SnG tables.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

The contest is over...

I turned my $50 starting monies into $150 and won the "contest". I won almost all of it playing those little $5 SnG's with a freaking $1 juice. The PS ones are better. I love those 45 player MTT for a buck. Lost a couple of those and went back to PP single tables. LOTS of second places got me there. So, here is my digression du jour:


So there are FOUR players left, and you are one of the shorter stacks. The other 3 players are all-in. Do you call with XX? NO, you don't. Yet, over and over again I am in 4th place and take second because I CAN FOLD A FREAKING HAND. Do you even call with AA? WHY? YOU ARE A DOG vs. 3 opponents!

Look, I am sick of the argument "Well, I am playing for first place." I may just be a wannabe, but I understand 8th grade math. You are 30% at best for first place here. And that assumes that a 3-1 chip lead guarantees you first place. BUT, look at it from my perspective. I am 90% sure to finish AT LEAST SECOND, and then I get to play someone who is stoopid enough to go all-in with XX ON THE BUBBLE when two others are ALREADY ALL-IN. Suddenly, being a 3-1 chips dog heads-up looks pretty darn good.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Getting back to it

Well, whenever I need to simulate a nice home Tournament, I play the 5 table $1 MTT at Poker Stars. 45 players, pays 7 places. I use this to get me back into the swing of serious play. I finished 5th, which is to say my worst finish ever. I almost got out 13th when ONCE AGAIN my big pocket pair (ok, Jacks) ran into a re-raise all in from a blind. I always expect to see AK or AQ in these situations, but each time I end up looking down the barrel of the KK shotgun. In this RARE instance, I hit a Jack on the turn plus a straight draw. The KK was knocked out.

But here is my question: Why does KK always want to be all-in? This never makes ANY sense to me. I bet 3xBB. That's it! So why not raise me the POT and see how I react. IF I have AK, your are NOT doing yourself a favor by going all-in, you are doing ME a favor. Why? Because AK always benefits from seeing all 5 cards. The argument of "well if the ace falls, I have to dump my hand" is STOOPID, because dumping your hand is FAR BETTER than going broke. And there is, of course, this argument: "Well if the player has JJ and an Ace falls, he could push me off the pot." Yeah, AND VICE VERSA. Gez.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

why I am not finishing well

I have been playing around with some new strategies. Raising first to act, 1/2 pot bets, Firing the second barrel, playing a vanilla game. It's been down right awful. But I have learned alot from it. The biggest thing I have learned is that if you play "by the book", you often are not bothering to play correctly based on reads. I mean, you will become weak/tight. I have not enjoyed that feeling at all over the last month. So, its time to end the experiments. I need to get back to the good parts of my game. I can't lose those, even when I am tearing down my game.

Its just soooo hard to read hands sometimes. Plus, I am playing too many hands from MP. Correction time? You bet. Back to Viper poker, but with some new lessons learned.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

pissing away small amounts of money

I played cards last night and put everyone on the right hand at first. I had TP and a guy reraised me on the river. Smelled like 2 pair, but I called. 10% of my stack gone. Then I have KK and the MP raises. I reraise and he is the only caller. The flop is QT3 and he bets 1/2 the pot. I re-raise and he goes all in. Well, there are really only 2 possible hands here (or he's a complete idiot). The AA (in which case I am way behind) or QQ (in which case I am WAY behind). Any lower pocket pair no longer makes sense because he went all in with the Q on the board. Yet, I call with the KK because I had raised so much, it was only another 25oo to call into 100oo. So, he flips over the QQ. I actually cheered because I made the right read. But I lost almost all my chips. Finally, short stacked and all-in with Ax, I was outdrawn by the BB with Q4o.

AFTER this, I could not seem to read solidly in the side cash game. I made one really good call, but again, I played poorly short handed. This USED to be the strength of my game (or so I thought).


Tuesday, September 13, 2005

poker and Monday Night Football

I played in the poker stars $1 tournamnent last night, since I missed the start of the charity tournament. I went to listen to Matt Millen talk (Go Lions). It was interesting in that I was completely emotionally detached from the process. I think I ended up 198th of 1200. You just can't afford to lose a race or to chase something and miss. I remember catching some players overplaying hands after the flop (like AK), but when you play solid poker, it is very hard to keep up with the average stack size. Alas, towards the end (<300 players), I missed to important draws. Both times I protected chips and both times I had the calling odds, but both times I missed. Neither was a good spot for a semi-bluff either. So, I eventually lost a race when my big pair lost to something marginal.

Anyways, A money place in one of these big fields continues to elude me. And you know what? I am going to find out why.

Question. Its level 9 and your stack is average. You are dealt 89o at UtG+1 (9 players). Do you limp, raise 2x, or raise 3x?

Monday, September 12, 2005

quick SnG's, personal life, and Card Club

I have played some SnGs lately (low buy in) and have been the KING of third place!! Why? Because if you play consistent, you don't get knocked out, but you dont win huge pots in a 50/50 race either. I am not willing to race a LAG with Ax, when I know I can outplay these guys over the long haul (strategy vs tactics). So, I make the money, but am often a 4 to 1 dog a that point and have not really been as good at making that up as of late. But my LONG GAME is much better. I think...

When your personal life is off kilter, do not play big stake games. The level of concentration is not there. You can still play to relax, but play in games where you can lose and walk away. The lows should never be combined.

I owe card club another One Minute Mystery. And it's half done. I'll get it to them soon if you are a fan. Listen to the cardclub poker podcast/radio show at:


I find it interesting that there are so many parallels between football and a game of poker. Game plans, tendancies of the opposing team, taking your shots, punishing someone for going across the middle (or limping), stats are fine but all that matters in the end is the score, applying pressure, and MAKING GOOD DECISIONS. Next time you watch a football game, think about your game. Oh yes, and GO LIONS!!! 1-0 baby!! WOOOOOT!!!

Saturday, September 10, 2005

still testing

Last night I played in a MTT where I was controlling my table and chips pretty well. I worked my 3500 into 7500 at the break. Then, players started to drop out. Suddenly we are 6 handed. I always liked my short handed play, but last night I ran into The Captain THREE times with second best hand. TWO of the three times, he called from the BB from behind. He flopped a straight one, and the other time flopped TPTK and called my all-in instantly, despite a board of AJx. (I had KQ and was running a dangerous semi-bluff as I thought he was playing into me).

some questions:

1. I was trying to figure out what to do when you have 33, you raised it pre-flop and the flop is 5JJ. The BB checked. I bet 1/2 the pot and he check raised me. I folded. But, it seems that I did it right. I think by raising with the 33 pre-fop, he put me on big cards. I raised on 2xBB though, as I wanted to stop making EVERY raise 3x just to mix it up.

2. I am still working with post flop betting. I noticed last night that people wanted to play back at me because of the constant 1/2 pot bets. It worked for me though, as I often had hands there... until one player began to check raise me every time. The 3rd time, I come back at him all-in and he called with TPTK. Surprising though. I did not expect that he would call an all-in with that since he is a very solid player.

3. I RARELY if even seem to hit the SC, yet it must just be temporary, as I see others hitting them. Heck a Q9 flopped a stright and cost me 1/3 of my chips before I blew open the escape hatch.

Overall, I played a calculated game, with the exception of the LAST hand of my night, I never got into a showdown with second best hand, and too some good pots and got good value from my solid hands. BUT, it costs chips to get away from hands, because you have to bet to see what is what. Two hands where you run into big hands and escape, and half your chips can be gone. My LARGE mistake, I think, was that the blinds were not big enough, nor the rounds so short, that I needed to do anything but proceed cautiously. But when the agression is working for you, then suddenly, opponents pick up big hands, you are left to adjust. It is especially bad if the SAME player keeps beeting you, because now you begin LOOKING for the bluff.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

remember when...

I had a tirade about how poker can possibly stay popular due to people becomming frustrated? (Tuesday, August 09, 2005 : "Why holdém will be the death of poker")

PartyGaming falls on fears fad is over
By Matthew Garrahan, Leisure Industries Correspondent
Published: September 7 2005 03:00 | Last updated: September 7 2005 03:00
The sharp growth of the online betting sector came to a halt yesterday when shares in Party-Gaming, the world's largest internet gaming group, fell 33 per cent.
[see link for remainder]

another 3rd place

It was funny though, being the shortstack and watching positions 4 and 5 go all in vs. the loose but ginormous stack and both getting knocked out. Once again, I just folded my way to third. I had some good hands early, but then bled through the middle rounds. It was IMPOSSIBLE to be aggressive as they would call almost anything. So, I had to sit back and wait. ugh.

2 sit n go's

finished 3rd in both, after losing back to back races in both. I have decided that I am not reading hands well, mostly due to lazyness? So, in order to force myself to see more flops (with good hands), I am going to switch to Pot Limit and work on my reads.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

test run #2

Wow, talk about a tale of two games. There were numerous Loose-agressive players playing very speculative hands. In order to make the final table, I had to lay down the following hands pre-flop: AK, QQ and 99. In the QQ case, the other player with a big stack made a HUGE pre-flop raise. He loves to do this with AK, so I could race him, but I was SECOND in chips at the time. Why take that risk? And if he is FIRST in chips, why isn't he slowing down?

Fast forward to the final table. Action is so loose, that I FOLD my way to THRID. WOW. And now, I surrender my blinds with T2 and T3 respectively. Common wisdon says not to do that when the BB is 10% of you stack and the you have about 5% of the other stacks. But I knew if I got a hand, they would pay it off. I got AK next, and doubled up. Then the finally came up. I am the big blind. The small blind and chip leader raises 3x. The Button goes all in. I call with JT figuring this is a chance to double up with 2 live cards. I figure him for a pocket pair, about 77. But here is the thing. The button goes all in , I call and the other player CALLS ALSO. WHY? With AJ no less?! And the flop is 25T and I am ahead. But an Ace on the turn seals BOTH our fates, as loosy mcloose takes down the final large pot of the night.

But I must admit I was very pleased with my showing. In fact, I had only 3 big hands all night. I had KK on a flop of rags with 5 callers of a 4xBB raise! I one time hit a straight on the turn and took a player out. And I took another nice hand with an over pair early on. That's right, no two pair, twips (sic), or Flush all night long. Boat? no water even in sight. But I still managed to play my cards for all their worth.

The KK was the ONLY hand I played at the final table during my fold-a-thon. And I raised it up 4x from EP, just to get FIVE callers. How loose is that?! The flop was 732 rainbow. Serves them right. Everyone who called that hand (other that the two monster stakcs), finished behind me. I did not even consider slow playing it with that pool, as soon as I saw the cards, I was all in FTA, no hesitation.

So this was a test of adaptability. Could I go in with one plan, and have to switch to a completely different one? YES. But it was an easy switch to go from loose agressive to tight.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Test Run #1

I use the PSO site as a training ground to test new weapons. I was using two new test weapons. The first was described in the last post. Being looser when the option of being first to act comes up. The second was to be less shy about making 1/2 pot stabs at uncontested pots.

Despite losing BOTH races (my AK lost both times), my AQ flopping TP and losing to KK, having to dump QQ post flop, AND finally succumbing to the BB flopping a perfect straight, I came in 12th (out of 79).

So, test #1 was a success. I need to adjust though. Despite laying down the QQ (and yes I was beat), I still need to be able to make a big laydown even when I am low on chips. That may be the difference. I also changed gears enough to compensate for my "current image", to make sure I did not play too many hands in a row. This helped immensely.

(It is still hard to confidently raise with AT or AJ in EP.)