I am really starting to like Pacific Poker. I decided to play in a $10 buy-in with 142 players and won:
I am really getting into my groove with my new strategy. I also experienced a lot of bad play. Players were just giving me their chips. I guess my tight-aggressive tendencies draw people to try to either bluff me or think I'm bluffing.
I also played in the $20 180-seat SNG at PokerStars and was in the top 10 for most of the game. But then when we were down to 11 players and I was in 6th place I had to take a couple of important phone calls and lost my focus. I should have just sat out until I was done but instead I pushed post flop from the SB with bottom pair and got called by a bigger stack in the BB with top pair. My A6 had very few outs against his A10 and I was out. Missed opportunity for sure because I could have made the final table and a lot more money:
Bankroll Update: $1,735.53
Thursday, September 28, 2006
I am really starting to like Pacific Poker. I decided to play in a $10 buy-in with 142 players and won:
Wednesday, September 27, 2006
I took the money I made in the Poker Savvy Blog Tour freeroll on Pacific Poker and entered a $20 tournament. I played solid until my AK nemesis got me in trouble in early position again. I got a limper in late position so I raised to see how serious he was. He just called and I totally missed the flop. I did bet out to see where I was and he called. The turn was a K at which point I bet out again and got called. The river was a blank and I bet and got re-raised. I called and saw he slow played a set of 5s he hit on the flop. It was downhil from there. I actually moved all-in with a pair of Qs and got called after the flop by two players with Ace-rag each. The turn AND river where both Aces and I was out early.
I then took my remaining cash to a $2 SNG with 40 players and placed third:
I also hit quad Ks when I was short stacked to get me back in the game:
Monday, September 25, 2006
This is not poker related but is way more important. I recently read the FairTax book and decided to write a post and try to get the word out. Many of you might have heard about the FairTax proposal but are not sure exactly what it means So here are two quick paragraphs that will help explain it:
What is the FairTax plan?
The FairTax plan is a comprehensive proposal that replaces all federal income and payroll taxes with an integrated approach including a progressive national retail sales tax, a rebate to ensure no American pays federal taxes up to the poverty level, dollar-for-dollar revenue neutrality, and the repeal of the 16th Amendment. This non-partisan legislation (HR 25/S 25) abolishes all federal personal, gift, estate, capital gains, alternative minimum, Social Security, Medicare, self-employment, and corporate taxes and replaces them all with one simple, visible, federal retail sales tax – collected by existing state sales tax authorities. The FairTax taxes us only on what we choose to spend, not on what we earn. It does not raise any more or less revenue; it is designed to be revenue neutral. So it is also cost neutral – the final cost for goods and services changes little under the FairTax. The FairTax is a fair, efficient, transparent, and intelligent solution to the frustration and inequity of our current tax system.
What is Americans For Fair Taxation (FairTax.org)?
FairTax.org is a non-profit, non-partisan, grassroots organization dedicated to replacing the current tax system. The organization has hundreds of thousands of members and volunteers nationwide. Its plan supports sound economic research, education of citizens and community leaders, and grassroots mobilization efforts. For more information visit the web page: www.fairtax.org or call 1-800-FAIRTAX.
So if you live in the USA and pay taxes, this should be of interest to you. I urge you to read up and let your friends and family know about this plan. Post it, e-mail it, talk about and vote on it whenever you can. If you have any questions I will be happy to try and answer them.
Sunday, September 24, 2006
After a crushing Friday where I was the receiver of multiple runner runner suckouts by the PokerStars idiots I was going to sit out for a little bit. My buddy and I counted how many KK hands got cracked and I think we got to over 5 out of 6 just for the hands we played. It was brutal.
But the Saturday afternoon I decided to play my ticket in the Party Poker weekly $100K Monster game. All I wanted to do was make the top 2000 out of over 4000 players in order to get my ticket into the $1M Monster monthly. That turned into a big fight with the wife who thought I was about to cancel our date night for poker. That was never my intention and I was not even going to play in the first place except she was off to go shopping in the afternoon. I told her that as soon as I make the top 2000 I can quit anytime, unless I make the final table in which case the first place is $12.5K and I am sure she would appreciate that.
I started with some very good hands that got me a lot of chips and a very solid table image. but after loosing half my stack with AK to AA I thought I was going to have to slow down. The very next hand I got AA and made my usual aggressive raise for about 5 times the BB. The guy who just had AA against me raised all-in from late position and I figured he had a high pocket pair so I called. He had KK (the death hand) and didn't improve to double me up again.
After we broke the 2000 barrier people were dropping out like flies and getting very aggressive. Since I had a pretty big stack (about 2 times the average) I didn't get involved in many hands. I was up and down for a bit but eventually managed to stay around the average stack wen my wife came back home. I went to ask her what restaurant she wanted to go to and while I sat out a couple of hands I missed pocket AA. So as soon as I got back I shoved all-in with A9 against QQ and got knocked out in 171st place. I could have stayed and played but the game ended after 8 hours (and a divorce). I figured there is no reason to keep playing since the real money was at the final table only. I did win $90 which almost covers my investment at Party Poker:
There were a bunch of other reasons to play on Saturday afternoon. The Sin City Poker Tour has a few more qualifiers at Poker.com before the Vegas final. The Blogger Poker Tour played its first round over at Poker.com as well. I played them both but could not pay too much attention and eventually just dumped my chips so I could concentrate.
I also played another small field at a Poker Savvy Blog Tour at Pacific Poker. It was a $250 freeroll with 49 players and the first time I've played at Pacific as far as I know. I ended up in 4th place after an awful suckout. My AQ all-in was called by A7 big stack who said "let's gamble" and hit a 7 on the flop and a 7 on the turn to take me out. Still, I won $30 which is nice. I was going to play the $10 tournament with $500 added at Mansion Poker but didn't register in time to enter. Thanks again to Poker Savvy Blog Tour for all these awesome tournaments they are running lately.
Thursday, September 21, 2006
Wednesday, September 20, 2006
OK, so last night was obviously going great. I started in some MTTs and busted with set over set and other suckouts. I think I have spotted a few leaks and tried my hardest to plug them and I think it is starting to work. I decided (against my better judgement) to deposit again into my PokerStars account. And as usual I ended up going into the 20 table $20 SNG. But as you can see below things worked out better.
The player who won was actually down to about 2K in chips when we were 4 handed and managed to pull AA and KK in almost back to back hands. He managed to go from short stack to chip leader in about 4 hands. At that point I told him that with his luck running like that he is bound to win it.
I really stayed out of trouble most of the game but when we were heads up I was about a 4-1 shortstack. I knew I had to get lucky and we actually traded the chip lead a few times. We both made bad mistakes and caught some good cards but I think my undoing was calling his all-ins with middle or bottom pairs to his top or middle pairs.
The final hand was a tough one. I held the all powerful 9-3o and called a min raise. The flop was Qs-6s-3d with two spades. I held the 3s and was going to fold to any bet. But it was just check-check so I saw a free card. The turn was a 9s giving me an interesting bottom two pair and a very weak flush draw. Since I was down to very few chips I pushed. He thought about it a few seconds and called with Q-6o (no spades) for top two pair. The river was a blank and I was done. Still a nice outcome.
This tournament was a true roller coaster. I was 2nd in chips early on and then made some serious mistakes and went down to 72nd place. From there I made a few good plays and was back in 3rd. At one point at the final table I was almost eliminated but by waiting for the button to go around I caught KK and more than tripled up.
I also checked The Poker DB this morning to see who I was up against and found that most of the final table players had between 5K-10K in winnings since 2005. So I guess I feel pretty good about holding my own with this bunch.
Quick Bankroll update: $1,466.56
Side note - I have been finished second a few too many times to my liking in the past few days. I can't seem to win any of the Rio and Maui SNGs that I am playing and keep coming in second. The 180 seat SNG was another example. I think I need to start practicing some low limit heads up but I am not sure that will keep me interested. I know I have to improve my heads-up skills in order to be able to close a tournament. Which brings me to another point:
Second side note - This is the highest my bankroll has ever been and I think I am getting bored with the lower limits. I think that playing Fort Knox SNGs is a little too high and I am not sure what I can do to maximize my return. If anyone has any ideas, leave me a comment.
PokerStars Tournament #32205424, No Limit Hold'em
Total Prize Pool: $3600.00
Tournament started - 2006/09/19 - 20:55:14 (ET)
You finished the tournament in 2nd place.
A $720.00 award has been credited to your Real Money account.
You earned 218.81 tournament leader points in this tournament.
For information about our tournament leader board, see our web site at http://www.PokerStars.com/tlb_tournament_rankings.html
Thank you for participating.
Tuesday, September 19, 2006
The Blogger Poker Tour is starting up again for a fun filled season 2. There will be about $30,000 worth of prizes including custom poker tables and iPod Nanos. The Grand Prize will be an all expense paid trip to the Aussie Millions in the early part of 2007, including a seat in the tournament.
Each game will be a freeroll for $500 over at Poker.com which is fast becoming my favorite place to play. All you have to do to play is register and validate your blog by going to Blogger Poker Tour.
I think I figured some of my recent mistakes and tendencies to get in trouble and I am doing my best to correct these issues. I played a few tourneys last night and did pretty well until my Queens ran into Aces in one and in another someone caught a straight on the river with a junk hand.
I did manage to take 25th place out of 233 in the $2000 Guaranteed at CD Poker:
I also took second in a Rio Jackpot SNG. But the best part was making quad Kings:
Monday, September 18, 2006
I am really starting to enjoy playing at Poker.com right now. First of all they processed my withdrawal quickly and were a delight to work with. Second, they have huge overlays in their guaranteed tournaments. Case in point, I played a $2K guaranteed last night that only had about 74 players at a $20 buy-in. I played solidly almost the whole game sitting on or near the chip lead. All this while getting beat by quads twice! Here's an example where I flopped a boat and lost to quads:
Kajagugu Posted Small Blind 300
NoLimit6 Posted Big Blind 600
You Were Dealt (5h, 5d)
walsh2787 Calls 600
Kajagugu Calls 300
Dealing Flop (5c,Jc,Jh)
walsh2787 Bets 600
Kajagugu Calls 600
Dealing Turn (Js)
walsh2787 Bets 600
Kajagugu Calls 600
Dealing River (9c)
walsh2787 Bets 4,800
Kajagugu Calls 4,800
walsh2787 has (Jd, Kh)
Kajagugu has (5h, 5d)
walsh2787 Wins 13,800 from pot 1 with : Four of a Kind, Jacks
I guess I was not going to get away from this hand anyway. When the third Jack fell on the turn I should have folded because any higher pocket pair would have beat me, but I ended up losing less than if I had pushed early.
I did get lucky a couple of times at the end with the blinds getting high but busted out in 4th place taking $200:
Friday, September 15, 2006
In the past week I have received a few e-mails from several poker sites saying that since they have no idea what the current legal state is related to poker they will not be accepting any more rake from US based players. You can play the play money games but no real money will change hands. Some, like Victor Chandler Poker and Purple Lounge said you need to take your money and run before it's too late. Some like Poker4Ever are not accepting new US players and have all sorts of withdrawl restrictions. Some, like DreamPoker sent the following:
The current legislation regarding online gaming in the United States and the rules governing online poker and casinos is being reviewed and actioned.
Due to the governing laws in certain U.S states, Dream Poker will no longer be accepting customers and any bets from the following states:
THis brings up three interesting scenarios:
1) Do these sites go out of business without their american players?
2) Do non-US players also suffer from the fact that there is less competition out there and less fish?
3) How in holy cyberspace can anyone say for sure where you are from? Will they not allow you to connect based on your IP address? Will they just check you registered address? Could there be a business for me in creating virtual PO boxes in the Caymans for american players to use as their address?
If you are an American player and want to play poker please go to http://www.CaymanPOBox.ky and sign up for your new mailbox!
(I just made that up but I am sure someone will still click it)
As usual I could only win 2 in a row of the Fort Knox SNG at CD Poker. But while I lost three, I was able to win one:
And then at Poker.com I won a 10-seat $20 SNG:
Poker.com - $561.50
CD Poker - $184.81
Poker4Ever - $48.74
PokerRoom - $39.02
Pitbull Poker - $24.35
Thursday, September 14, 2006
I had my best night ever of my short poker career. I will start with the end and move backwards in time because I want the top of this post to show you where you need to go first:
Poker Savvy Blog Tour is AWESOME! They ran another $1000 freeroll, this time at Poker.com and only 21 people showed up. So only the top three places got paid ($500, $300, $200).
I have never played well at Poker.com for one reason or another, but last night was different. I saw a bunch of bloggers who I think are very good players (GCox25, CawtBluffin, Katitude). Kat was about to bubble out and hung on strong to make a comeback and finish second. She almost knocked me out heads up but I got lucky and caught a K on the river to almost finish her. Couple of hands later it was over:
Ok, before all this started I was trying to clear my Poker Inside weekly bonus over at CD Poker. I basically took all my money out of every iPoker site I had and moved it over. I started out playing the Rio jackpot SNGs but was getting clobbered. So I did what any donkey would and uped the stakes. I deposited another $100 and went to the $50+9 Fort Knox SNGs. I then won two in a row. That's two out of six for the $100K jackpot:
Best Poker Night Ever - $800 and three wins.
Thursday, September 07, 2006
I was trying to move my bankroll around so that I can play on CD Poker in their Jackpot SNG games since I get bonuses from Poker Inside. While BetFred Poker has been good to me but I can't seem to win more than 2 Rio SNGs in a row. It happened again last night. So I decided to cash out and found out that I needed to make a depoist first. Since I thought I had no money in my Neteller account I withdrew all my Titan winnings. But then to my surprise I saw that I had some money just sitting over at Neteller. Upon further investigation it seems like I have been making some money from some of my affiliate links.
So I decided to dump all the Neteller transaction and see what's going on. Here are my interesting findings:
1) $2915 total debits (this includes fees and software that I have bought from my winnings like Poker Tracker and PokerAce HUD, which if you don't have you should run and buy right now!).
2) $2602 total credits. This includes affiliate deposits.
So that gives us a total of $313 out of pocket for all my poker ventures ever since I started playing online about 3 years ago. I thought I was deeper in the hole than that and since my current bankroll is over $400 I am actually ahead. Not to mention the hours of entertainment I have enjoyed...
3) I've made about $150 from affiliate bonuses, which is something I didn't think would happen.
4) I have deposited $619 but only withdrew $325 at PokerStars which doesn't surprise me very much. I have nothing to show for it except for some FPP points that I am still trying to use to get into the MoneyMaker Millionaire tournament. So a total loss of $294 to river 2 outer suckouts is not too bad.
5) I have deposited $650 at UltimateBet which might as well change their name to UltimateBeat. Never made a withdrawal there. So that is a total loss site for me.
6) Party Poker has taken $610 of my money and given only $50 back. I have nothing in my account there right now except for my ticket to the Weekly $100K as part of the Monster Jackpot they are currently running. So that's $560 down the Party Drain.
7) I've made $170 withdrawal at Trident Poker, $145 at PokerRoom and $100 at Poker4Ever pretty much without depositing any money.
So what does all this show me? My poker career is pretty much a zero sum venture. I don't make money, I don't lose money. I just play and have some fun. So I need to just keep it fun.
Last Friday we had our monthly neighborhood home game. It has grown into a monster and we actually had 19 people playing, even though many people said they would not be able to make it because of the long Labor Day weekend. Once again we played on two tables. My suggestion to actually have two separate games was eventually shot down by some greedy guys who could only think of the big payday but in reality got knocked out before the tables merged.
We had some new poker clock software to work with and we actually managed to do a half hour for the first level before the crazy blinds started to kick in. Still, the first game was almost 3 1/2 hours long.
I played well and as usual ran into lucky Charles who calls with anything and makes full houses out of K2o. He actually went on to win the thing, which was a surprise since he was all-in with very few chips several times. I think I pushed with 55 or something and he got lucky to cripple me and eventually knock me out.
During the break I played darts for probably the first time in my life. We played 'Cricket' and I had no idea what I was doing. Eventually I started to figure it out when I was way behind and the only way for me to catch up was to hit bulls-eyes. So I hit it about 8 times to take the lead and win. Not bad. Too bad I wasn't this lucky at poker.
The second game was starting and we changed the blind structure so that the game would be over in 2 hours. So it became a shove-fest again. I managed to stay afloat for a while and eventually made the final table. At this point the host's wife was totally hammered and sitting to my right. So not only were we playing 10 minute rounds, but having to tell her it's her turn, who's still in the hand, whether or not the pot has been raised and to how much - all that got us to about 2 hands per round. I was getting cold decked and short stacked and eventually got 77 in the BB. Button called, drunk SB to my right went all-in for about 3/4 my stack and now I had a choice of folding and getting another round being extremely short stacked or going all-in to isolate her. At some point while I was thinking someone said the only reason I was still thinking about it was how much I wanted to get her out of the game. I eventually raised and the button folded. I turned over my pocket 7s and she called my a shit for calling and turned over 96o (WTF moment #1). The wonder flop was 969 (WTF moment #2) the turn was an 8 and the river was a 10, giving me a crap straight and flopping her a full house. Then the best part was that she though she actually had a pair of 6s, which would not have mattered anyway because she would have flopped a boat either way. My next hand I was all-in in the SB with A-10 (not too bad) and she called with 72o and flop a set of 2s. She went on to get second place because she was too tired to fight it out and gave up.
This was probably the best (and worst) display of drunk poker any of us had ever seen. Better than 12-pack Chris.
On a good note, my wife joined the fun this time. I had been telling her that many other wives were playing and that she would love it. And indeed she did. She only played in the first game because she threw out her back the day before trying to pick up the baby. She is a total calling station and never ever raises unless she has the absolute nuts. And she knows when I bluff so she calls me down. The reason she knows how I play is because we played lots of heads-up to get her ready for the big night. She hates playing online so the only way to practice was to play for real. Anyway, she did pretty well and got lucky a couple of times to double up. She made it to the final table and got knocked out 7th out of 19. And thank heavens, I was not the one to knock her out.
I am getting a bit frustrated with the our neighborhood games because of the short rounds and the blind structure. If anyone has a better idea of how to get 20 people to play a game in 2 hours, let me know. I think I would just get one big game going with longer rounds. Someone gets knocked out, they can start a side cash game.
Last note, I switched over to the new Beta Blogger version and I don't think the spell check is working, so pardon the errors. Oh no, I just figured it out. I actually wrote a post without errors.
Tuesday, September 05, 2006
I have been having quite the roller coaster at BetFred Poker these last few days. I can't get more than two wins in a row at the Jackpot SNG tables and I have been playing them all ($5, $20 and even $50). My best run has been at the Rio $20 SNG which pays out a $35,000 progressive jackpot to whoever wins six in a row. I won two, then got a second, then won again. My $30 bankroll has gone all the way down to almost nothing, but is now up to over $170. Wish me luck!
Sunday, September 03, 2006
Friday, September 01, 2006
Ever since winning $30 at BetFred Poker in an affiliate freeroll I have been riding the crazy Jackpot SNG roller coaster. I started by winning the Maui and Rio. Then I won the Rio a second time. Then I lost. Then I won the Maui a second time. Then I lost again. I even decided to go nuts and play the Fort Knox which has a $50+9 buy-in (where if you win 6 in a row you get the $100,000 jackpot). I got really lucky and won the first one. Then I lost the second to some moron who played A4 out of position. Then I lost the third. I am still up to around $90 from nothing which is good. I am itching to play the Fort Knox again. We'll see. Here's Fred winking at me for winning: