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The Quest for Cash, Thoughts on Omaha, and Heads-Up Timetable

Hello all! I have an extra spring in my step due to the interview and poker success yesterday.

The Interview
The interview went extremely well. I met with all three of the firms' partners. They remembered me from a year ago when I interviewed for an entry level position. One of the partners in particular, the only woman, seemed to fawn over me. I'm more of a ladies' man than a mans' man, due in some part to my irresistable charm and my utter lack of athletic skill and interest in sports stats. So, either she was hitting on me when she said that they were, "extremely happy to see" me, or it's in the bag. I'm trying not to count my chickens before I hatch, but if I were to be counting, my chickens would be worth more money but take extra hours. Sounds like a fair shake overall.

Success in Rio
On the subject of making money, I have a generally theory on poker that I have (after I developed it) heard either Lederer or Ferguson say in a FullTilt Lessons from the Pros. The concept is this: You MUST change up your game every once in a while. It will keep your game fresh, well-rounded, and often profitable when you switch to a different game. This is not about Omaha. I'll get to that in a minute. Rather, this is about the $20 SNGs at Noble. After winning a $20 SNG two days ago, I decided to ask GCox to join me for another one. This time, in pursuit of a special Jackpot, we played the 6-person $20 Rio Jackpot SNG. For those who don't know Noble, you are missing out. I almost don't want to tell you about it, because it's been such a treasure trove for me. I don't need my readers, who are undoubtably superior players (thanks in some part to my superb insight) to ruin my own personal fishing pond.

But here is the deal. Noble is running a promotion regarding their SNGs. If you win 7 $10 SNGs in a row, you get a cool Million. Not too shabby. There are smaller prizes for 6 in a row, 5 in a row, and some number in a row placing 1st or 2nd. Before they were running this, the started (and are now continuing) the Rio and Maui SNG Jackpots. Maui are $5 10-person SNGs. Win five in a row and get $15,000 or so. It may be higher, as its progressive. Come in 1st or 2nd and get $200. Rio are $20 6-person SNGs. With six in a row and get $18,500 (which has now progressed to $30,000). Place 1st or 2nd in six in a row and get $300. I'm now aiming for $300 after coming in 1st and 2nd yesterday.

I'd been playing limit to no particularly good or bad effect. GCox and I decided to go for the Rio, and we discovered something that made it even more juicy. Rios pay out three out of six spots! Obviously, as a result, the payouts are worse. However, it helps to insure some win. 3rd place gets $24, for a dollar profit (they take a $3 fee, which is higher than their $2 non-Jackpot SNGs). 2nd = $36. 1st = $60.

In both games, I "carried" GCox to 3rd place victory. In the first one, it was immediately apparent that we had a TIGHT table. So I bluffed. A lot. And they folded. A lot. Sooner or later, I was the big chipleader. GCox was holding on, when I took out fourth place, who had him out-stacked. In 3rd, GCox was in the money, but went out to the eventual 2nd place finisher. At that point, I was the big chip-leader, with about a 3-1 advantage. I flubbed a bit (which, for Kipper's sake, means fumbled or fucked up in layman's terms), and was near 1-1. I fought back for a 2-1 advantage when this hand happened.

I had 3c4c. I raised pre-flop from 200 to 400. My stack was about 4000. His was 2000. He called. I raise a lot pre-flop, and he was catching on, but I wasn't concerned. The flop was 2c5x7c. I bet out 400. He pushed for another 1200. I thought for a bit and called. My reasoning was that I had a lot of outs. I didn't think that he hit the board. I didn't even have him on a flush draw. I figured KJ or Ace high. He had Ace high. I had a lot of outs: three 3s, three 4s, three Aces (but potentially more, if he didn't hold an ace), four 6s, and any club, which amounted to an additional seven outs (ignoring the 6c and Ac). In total, I had 20 outs! I didn't realize how smart I was. Even if he had an overpair or a pair of 5s or 7s, I had 14 outs. Golden. I hit the Ace of clubs and called it a win. Go me.

The next SNG was quite the comeback. I was cold-decked and hurt by the more aggressive table. So my overly aggressive play to start was a big mistake. I switched modes to fit the table conditions and tightened up. When we were down to four, I decided to make a bluff attempt, hoping that my tight image would pay off. It didn't and I was the major short stack with 450 to go and 20-40 blinds. That's when I lost my internet connection. My laptop is totally pirating off of neighbors. I have to yell at them because all of their connections suck. Its not easy being a pirate. Arrrrrr!

When I fired up Noble on my desktop, I was down to $300 chips, and the blinds were 30/60. Usually I use the Rule of 10. If my stack is less than 10x the big blind, I never call. I either go all in, or fold. I will, however, check if I am the big blind, which may not generally be the best strategy. As a result, my stack went up to 360, when I doubled up with my AK v. an AJ. The flop was Qxx. The turn was a J. I was mentally packing it up. The river was a sweet T, and I was back in it. I believe I also doubled up at some point with my AQ v. AK. Luck was with me. I doubled again when my 88 held up agains AK. I switched to aggressive play, even though I was still one of the shorter stacks, and eventually someone overplayed a hand. I don't remember the details, but I feigned weakness and then pushed after he raised. He called and was promptly eliminated. By this point, GCox was the small stack, so I jokingly said that I carried his ass to 3rd again. In all truth, he carried himself. I then took him out, just for the hell of it. I think it was my AQ v. his AT. He doesn't improve, and I've secured 2nd. I came in 2nd, dashing my hopes of the big jackpot, but keeping me alive for the small one ($300). The last hand went as follows:

We are about even in chip stacks. He has me by about 200. I hold Q8o and double the blinds preflop from 200 to 400, I think. He calls. The flop is 487. I check. He minimum bets. I go all-in, and he calls. He has K8, and the rest, as they say, is history.

I look forward to playing and placing 1st or 2nd in 4 more Rios. Wish me luck.

Jordan on Losing Omaha
Omaha may be profitable to some, as suggested by Mourn (thanks for reading and commenting). I'm not sure if he meant limit or pot limit, but pot limit Omaha has not been good to me. The bottom line is, when I have a good hand, I always bet the pot. So, when I get outdrawn, I'm out pretty quick. I know that there must be a better strategy, but I'm trying to protect my hands by messing with my opponents pot-odds. It doesn't work though, with some of these players, because the term pot-odds isn't in their vocabulary. Bottom line is, I like the game, but it isn't profitable for me right now. I'll probably go back to it every once in a while, but as for now, I'm avoiding it like the plague. Can anyone say Omaha Challenge?

Heads-Up Challenge
The SNG Challenge wraps up this week. For the leaderboard, check out GCox's site. It's been a great success and I can only hope that the Heads-Up Challenge will be even better.

With the SNG Challenge ending on Monday, Aug. 8th (why didn't we end it on Sunday?), I would like to start the Heads Up Challenge shortly after. I suggest Wednesday Aug. 10th, which will provide six days to iron out the details. The competition will continue until we have a winner, which I estimate to take three to four weeks, depending on our independent schedules.

Unfortunately, Kipper has bowed out of the HU Challenge. Fortunately, DoubleAs is in. Assuming that DNasty and SteelerJosh are up for the HU Challenge, that gives up six Challengers: Me, GCox, TripJax, DNasty, SteelerJosh, and DoubleAs. If need be, this is a fine field. However, we are looking for two more competitors? My wish list includes Dr. Pauly, WillWonka, WiredPairs, Stabby, Robbie Hole, Dave Roose or Sammy Farha. Others are invited to join. Maybe you can be America's Next Top HU Champ!

In the Preliminaries, each challenger will play against each other challenger. The top half, by win/loss record will advance to the Semi-Finals. All semi-finalists will play each other. The top two will advance to the best of 5 finals. Depending on participants, 2nd place may receive a prize.

We can choose one site, or we can play at any site that players want for each individual match. If we choose a central site, it should have low traffic OR private rooms. This will allow us to jump into an HU SNG without any interference from others. I suggest Noble, since most of us have accounts there, those that don't can get the 100% First Deposit Bonus, and the traffic in HU is pretty weak.

I suggest we play $5 HU SNGs, as this is a friendly challenge moreso than a money-making venture. However, I would permit challengers in particular matches to agree to higher stakes. If either disagree, $5 is the default.

Scheduling is the interesting thing. We can arrange to meet online at a given time. For instance, if DoubleAs is against SteelerJosh in the first round (better SteelerJosh than me), then we can arrange that they play at 10pm ET on Monday, August X. The players can arrange the date and time, and announce it at a central site (preferrably here). This way, all competitors can meet up and railbird.

The other way would be to allow competitors to meet up willy-nilly. If they see each other online via AIM or otherwise, they can arrange their quick game, and post the results.

Maybe we should do both. Players can pre-arrange their matches, OR they can meet up as they go. Of course, pre-arranged matches are preferrable, since it will accomodate railbirds.

Challengers, please leave comments with your consent or suggestions as to format and location. Interested challengers, please leave a comment as well. We are looking for a total of 8 people to really make this thing interesting.

posted by Jordan @ 9:23 AM,


At 1:27 PM, Blogger GaryC said...

You know I'm down for whatever you decide. I have no problems playing at whatever site(s) you want to play at.
Post the rules and I will play by them.

Nice work last night. I appreciate you dragging me along.

Wife and kids are gone to Texas for the weekend. I'll be playing alot in the next four days. Still trying to decide if I can meet DuggleBogey at the casino one night.


At 1:41 PM, Blogger WillWonka said...

I'm dangerously close to making the committment to the heads-up challenge. I will enjoy being humbled by you guys. If it is going to be Noble, I will have to sign up there. What are the other options?

At 2:42 PM, Blogger HighOnPoker said...

Other options are any other site, really. Will, I suggest you sign up for Noble anyway. The 100% first deposit bonus is awesome and easy to earn. And with the Jackpot SNGs, you should clean up. I have to imagine that they attract the fishes.

If anyone knows of sites with low traffic OR where we can set up a private room, let me know. Thanks.

At 6:13 PM, Blogger TripJax said...

My notes show the SNG Challenge ending on the 7th. And if Kipper and GCox agree, I'm fine with it ending Sunday. The words foregone conclusion come to mind, though Kipper might want to have that extra day to grind it into 2nd (or 1st if he goes for the $50 SNG's!!). Either way is fine with me, but I had already figured it was the 7th until you wrote otherwise.

If it can't be done at UB, I'd say we definitely go for Noble. Most of us have accounts their, and those who don't have good incentive to do so (PSO promotions, Noble promotions, $1mm SNG's etc...). Let's do it their if we can. I had planned to cash out their to use for vacation, but I can hold off on the cash out for a while and just pull the money from another account for vacation. Let me know what ya think...

At 8:20 PM, Blogger HighOnPoker said...

The only problem that I have with UB is that there is a decent amount of traffic and no private rooms, so i'm worried about wasting money trying to play against a challenger and joe schmo jumps in first. Plus, losing at the SNG Challenge didn't help my opinion of that place.

At 8:21 PM, Blogger HighOnPoker said...

Oh yeah, Kipper, stop being a puss and enter the challenge!

At 9:17 PM, Blogger DP said...

I'll play in the next challenge hopefully but I'll stay tuned for the results of this one...

Also, I like playing on Full Tilt Poker; they have the best software by far and heads up $5 + 0.25 SnGs that don't have a lot of traffic.

At 9:34 PM, Blogger TripJax said...

i'd be willing to consider full tilt. but i had a shit hard time trying to clear their bonus and i pretty much lost my roll their. funny how whether you make or lose money at a site can decide if you like it. don't get me wrong, i really like full tilt, just bad results for me so far.

I'm up for anything though, i guess...

At 11:23 PM, Blogger HighOnPoker said...

I hated Full Tilt. Same deal as Trip. Lost my bankroll and couldnt earn their damn bonus.

Is it that hard for everyone to do Noble? Work with me here, people.

At 9:15 AM, Blogger HighOnPoker said...

And DP from Wired Pairs would be a welcomed addition to the challenge. I encourage you to join, sir.

At 11:41 PM, Blogger DP said...

Noble seems like a great site to have the heads up matches.

Although it sounds like fun, I don't have enough time to compete online right now.


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