DADI 7 Results
Friday, June 30, 2006
I have a deposition this morning, but once I get a chance, we'll work through this and figure out who is getting what. Whatever the case, thanks for playing everyone. Your fearless writer placed 15th, enough to beat Woffle's All-Star Team in a Last Longer Bet, but not enough to win the Multi-way. That honor is bestowed upon JJOK's team. But more on that later. Until then!
So, I'm back. Let's take a look at the results and see who won what?
In First Place (to no one's surprise) is Scotty McDreamy himself. Scott is one of the few High On Poker role models for his consistency and ability to make great reads. So, Scott, congratulations. Not only did you win a sweet amount of cash, but CMitch from O-poker has donated a $215 token to the DADI for it's first place winner. You can contact me at highonpokr AT yahoo DOT communication if you would like CMitch's email information, but I believe that he may have provided it to you last night. Congratulations once again Scott! (And, I've finally linked you up...I don't know why I haven't done it sooner.)
In Second Place, Grumbledook! I have to admit, I don't know Grumbledook, but congratulations to him. For his efforts, he wins an iPod Shuffle from PokerOnAMac.com! You can email me or go to PokerOnAMac.com and contact the site directly. Congratulations for your valiant effort.
In Third Place, JJOK, captain of the winning Last Longer Team. For his efforts, JJOK gets 800 VPP Points from Vegas Poker Pro.com! You can collect your prize by emailing VPP at email@example.com, or by emailing me. To collect the prize, you will have to open a VPP account, but you do not need to do any promotions (although you may choose to do one or more to build up your VPP points before you cash them in).
In Fourth place was, ug, SirFWalGMAN. Man, what the fudge! Not only was I stuck at his table the entire time, and had to listen to his pathetic attempts at tilting me, but then after I bust he keeps talking shit. I swear Woffle, I should kick your virtual fudging teeth in. But, nice win. Enjoy your 400 VPP points, you silly prag. Email VPP at firstname.lastname@example.org or email me directly and I'll hook it up.
On the bubble was Grupper. I sat next to Grupper for a long time, and he was good company, especially since he liked to fold to my bets. But he got the last laugh. Like his avatar, the goat, he was stubborn and sure-footed enough to last out some bigger stacks and at least with the bubble prize. 400 VPP points are coming your way. Email VPP or me.
Finally, someone won the bounty on VPP Dave for 400 VPP points. I don't remember who it was. The letter G comes to mind. But whoever you are, I know that Dave and I explained the bounty to you, so you know who you are and you know how to contact us.
66 players. Not too bad. Thank you everyone for coming out. I should probably discuss the last longer bets now.
JJOK's team won with 51 total points, followed by Smokkee's team with 67, Team Drunkie with 79, our team with 118 and Teak Iakaris with 151! Congrats to JJOK's team. I don't know if anyone has begun transfering funds yet, but here is how we'll do it. Smokkee's team should transfer $10 each to JJOK. Team Drunkie should transfer $10 each to Drewspop. Team Iakaris should transfer $10 each to MiamiDon. My team will transfer $10 to each of the individual players on the winning team (along with an extra $5 each, since we had a little side side action against JJOK's team). Capiche?
My team DID beat our side bet with Woffle's replacement team, which consisted of CJ from Up for Poker and Katitude. I was worried about his new roster, but both of his teammates went out early. Mine lasted until 48, which wasn't much better, but I was able to make it deep enough (15th place) to win our team last longer. Woffle seemed upset that Duggle wasn't on his team. If he was, Woffle would've won. But, he wasn't, so YOU LOSE! Ah!
As for me, I played well, probably better than I've played in a long time. I played attention, I made good laydowns, I made the appropriate steals when necessary. I eventually went out with AJ v. 77 preflop all-in, but that is part of the game. I needed to win that cointoss to catapult me into good position to money with ease. So, I put it all on a "coin toss" (which I will be writing about in depth later) and lost. I now see why they say that you have to win some coin tosses to win a large field tournament (not that 66 is that large). I think I lost to McDreamy, so at least I can say that I lost to the best player in the tournament.
As expected, there were no entires in the Smack Talk contest. That's why I set the minimum at 3 entries for the contest to kick in. Last time I tried it, I got one entry, and I felt like a jerk cancelling it after the fact. It's not that people aren't talking smack. It's just that they are also playing poker, so there isn't the time or thought to copy and paste. Oh well! I'll have to find another way to give away some free stuff.
With the multitude of blogger tournaments around, I wonder at times if DADI is even necessary. I can play in a blogger-heavy tournament every day from Mon-Thurs. In fact, I wanted to so much that I found myself neglecting other things to join these games, or feeling bad about missing out. Well, I have to accept that I can't play in every single one.
Don't think I'm not happy about the proliferation. The truth is, I love it. I love playing with people who can joke around and have a good time (except Woffle, who can suck it). I like the familiarity of these games. It feels like a home game, really. That is part of the reason why DADI has sought out sponsors and added side action. We want to keep it interesting and different. It's also why it happens once a month, instead of weekly.
The point is, thank you, other bloggers, for coming out to DADI, especially after record-breaking numbers at Mondays at the Hoy and the Mookie (if I'm not mistaken).
So, does anyone think we can do a $10 rebuy next time? Just a thought. I need to speak to my compadres, but it might be a nice twist. I'm just concerned that it might scare some people off.
I think I need to go now. Superman Returns tonight! Helping wifey Kim's friends move into their new home tomorrow (somebody shoot me). Oh, and I'm off to Jamaica on Monday, so if any winners need help with their prizes, I'll either get to it when I get back (if not before) or you can contact TripJax.
In Case You Forgot...
Thursday, June 29, 2006
Oh, it's DADI time! Remember, the password is pokertrust. Make sure you type it in as all lowercase, too!
Don't forget that Smack Talk contest. Go ahead, tilt someone. Then copy and paste it into a comment on this site. If there are three or more entries, the best smack talk (based entirely on my opinion) wins either (a) their buy-in of $11 back, (b) a used poker book, chosen from a varied selection, (c) a deck of copag cards, or (d) the PC version of Daniel Negreanu's Stacked videogame.
I warmed up last night by sucking out at Genoa to become one of the big stacks, and then later losing it all to the only person with more chips than me when I made one of the WORST PLAYS EVER with KK. I reraised a lot preflop. He called. The flop had an Ace and we both checked. He bet 400 into a 2400+ pot on the turn and I pushed. He called with Ace-Ten, and I saved face with this gem: "And that completes the lesson on how Not to play Kings. I hope you've all learned a lot from today's session." I then made my exit.
I also played in the Mookie. I busted 23rd out of 55. I was short stack for a while. Whatever. It's behind me.
I'm still struggling to tie down all of the last longer bets. Bloggers who are involved, please check your emails. I sent out a mass email this morning to get everything sorted. Team Waffle need not check. Everything is squared with them. Funny, actually, how it is Team Waffle House. Arguably, Duggle came up with the team roster, and Hoyazo has been on such a tear, it almost warrants the team name Team Hoy. But, Waffle has the power of personality behind him, and the funniest name to boot, so Team Waffle House it is.
Man, I'm going to Jamaica! I can hardly believe it.
I got myself an iPod last night. It came in the mail pretty damn quick. Thanks Amazon, PSO and VPP! I also had $50 in iTunes thanks to a VPP promo, so I've already got some sweet new (for me) music on the iPod, including Gnarls Barkley and the Chemical Brothers. Nothing says poker than moody, trance-like, techno music!
So, I've got lots to do before I get home and play tonight. Have a great day!
Oh, and one last thing. Enjoy this pic of a very pregnant, very naked Britney Spears. Ironically, she hasn't looked this good (or thin) in years:
If you bet it, they will come.
Wednesday, June 28, 2006
Great news, everybody! Wifey Kim is going to Miami on a speech therapy conference! Of course, it's in November; November 15-19 to be exact. And, in truth, I doubt she'll be learning much about speech therapy, since I don't see many of the seminars taking place at the pool or beach, where wifey Kim will be undoubtedly tanning and gabbing with her friends from work.
And poor lil' Jordan, with nowhere to go...unless...
Atlantic City? This is always a goodie. It's a cheap trip, costing just gas and rooms, preferably at a comped rate for the weekdays. It's a shame that the direct train from NYC to AC won't be running by then. With all this notice, I can probably get some blogger bretheren to meet up too. But even if I don't get blogger bretheren there, it'd be easy to get together some of my local crew. Yes, AC is the great fallback plan! But how about...
Foxwoods? The price of rooms is ridiculous, but I can probably get a room in some seedy motel. The thing is, Foxwoods is only one place. I haven't been there in years, and I wouldn't mind returning to see what's up. The real selling point, though, would be the NE bloggers. I know Waffle is nearby, as is Drewspop and more than a few that I can't think of right now. In fact, I believe Bone Daddy was planning something at the 'woods in November. Not a bad choice at all, especially for a cheap change of pace. Except, how about...
Vegas? Wow, Vegas! What a great idea. The flights will be expensive, probably, but I can always book a free flight through United if I earn enough points by then. Even without that, the experience of Vegas is well worth the price. Wifey Kim's old college roommate lives out there with her poker-playing boyfriend, so I can probably arrange to stay with them. All I'll need is a rental car and a map! Surely I'd get to spend some time with Vegas bloggers like Miami Don and Carmen Sin City (who I just realized that I had yet to link to, now corrected). I might even get some other bloggers to head out to the ole' L.V. for some pokery goodness. If that doesn't work, there is always...
Poker Roadtrip? I'm not sure how this would work. I guess I could start down in Washington, D.C., where I know a few bloggers like Garthmeister. Then, I could make my way up through NJ, hit AC, and keep going through to Foxwoods. Ultimately, I can end up in my old alma matter, Buffalo for some wings and degenerate gambling at the new casinos. Seems like an aweful lot of work, but quite a bit of fun too. Still, it might be too much for 5-6 days.
What a predicament! I wish they were all this tough!
So, I moneyed in an MTT last night and went deep into another. The money was at Poker.com, in a $10+1 MTT with 48 other players. When we were down to 6 (the bubble), I was the chipleader. But I ultimately went out in 5th, due in large part to the escalating blinds and two bad beats. My final two hands were AK v. AQ (rivered Q, all in pre-flop), and AJ v. T9 (flopped T, turned T, all-in preflop). I wasn't too upset about the beats. It just verified to me that I still got it. I played very well throughout, and lost ITM with two bad beats. That's poker!
The other tournament was a $5 rebuy PLO8 on Titan. I didn't rebuy at all, but added on. I made it to the top 20 out of 78 or so, but after that, the blinds were so high that the game was a crap shoot. Still, it felt great to have a modicum of success, if not a tidal wave.
I also had the pleasure of playing some .25/.50 NLHE at PokerShare with GCox, who I can only presume is working through a PSO or VPP bonus. I suppose that is another great reason to try a PSO or VPP promotion. Sometimes, you can find a whole new fishpond, when all you are looking for is a free lunch ("I dub thee, Jordan, Master of Mixed Metaphors!"). The players at PokerShare are muy terrible'. G was able to turn $30 into $110 or so. I actually lost a buck or 7, but only because I couldn't stick around long enough to benefit from the action. When I played there last, I deposited $300 or so and withdrew $500. I then redeposited $200 and withdrew $290. So, um, why the hell am I not playing there more? I have no idea, but that will change...as soon as I'm done clearing the Stars bonus...
So, that's where I'm at with the poker. I've had a rebound of success, albeit small, overall. I'm going to keep my mind strong, possibly play at Genoa tonight, and move forward.
In a few days, I'll be on my way to Jamaica. In the meanwhile, my Team Leader (team of 2, mind you, which makes me a Team Follower) just had a baby, so he is out for the week. Let's do the math: Regular Work + Prep others for when I'm Out of the Office + Do the Work of the Team Leader While He's Out + Facilitate the Transition to When He's Back and I'm Out = Hardworking Jordan. Yippee! Meanwhile, I've barely thought about Jamaica. I still have a lot of shopping to do and packing as well, but I guess that is what weekends are for.
SLB159 has gotten himself a blog. SLB was a reader who showed up for a random Mookie (or Hoy?) and stuck around. He's a good guy, and has been commenting on this and a few other sites. I guess everyone kept telling him to get a blog, since that's what the cool kids do, and sure enough, peer pressure wins out. Head over to SLB's blog and leave him a witty sarcastic comment. May I suggest, "Nice blog. Why don't you just do heroine, too? Everyone else is doing it!" I went with the more subtle: "Welcome to the family. You've been assigned the role of great aunt." My sarcasm knows no bounds. Of course, in honesty, I welcome SLB into the poker blogging community. But I do encourage him to read some poker books, because if you get all of your advice from blogs, you are going to be one broke mofo! They'll give a blog to anyone! After all, this blog might as well be Exhibit A.
I think that is all for now. I'm mentally gearing up for DADI. I'm a bit nervous about numbers, as always. It's a silly thing, but it's like throwing a Halloween party and hoping that people show up in costume. Even if it's a small crowd, it'll be fun. But, with all of the apple bobbing, silly string, and pin the tail on the donkey (I ran out of Halloween references) going on, you want to have the place filled to the brim.
Welcome to Prime Time, Fish!
DADI Side Action
Tuesday, June 27, 2006
I booked some DADI side action, and it is not too late to get into the mix. It's gotten a bit messy after someone suggested that we combine the last longer bets. So, here is a recap of what I understand to be the current side action. If any team would like something changed (i.e., a switch from the straight last longer bets to the combined), leave me a comment.
Stable Last Longer Bets- a "stable" in horse (or professional wrestling) terms is essentially a roster of players. In this case, there will be stables of 3. The team with the lowest COMBINED place wins.
Team PokerTrust v. Team Waffle House- TripJax, GCox and I will be facing DuggleBogey, Waffle and Hoyazo in a heads-up Stable Last Longer match for $10 per player. If all members of the winning team outlast all players from the losing team, the best double and the winning team gets $20/pp.
Team PokerTrust v. Team Smokee v. Team JJOK v. the New School- This is a multi-way challenge, started at the suggestion of CL Russo. The full teams are
1. G, Trip and I
2. Smokkee, Wes (presumably, the one from Dumbasses Trump All) and Surflexus
3. JJOK, Drewspop and Miami Don
4. Iakaris, Bone Daddy, and Fuel55.
The current game is set at $5/pp, but I am right now announcing my intention of raising it to $10/pp. I need the consent of ALL team captains (the first-named for each team) for the increase to go into effect. There will be no double up provision. Other teams are invited to join, including Team Waffle House, if they'd prefer to change their wager.
Smack Talk Competition- Here's the deal. I love me some smack talk. So, if you drop a particularly funny like, copy and paste it into a comment on this here site within 8 hours of the event. If I get at least 3 submissions (by three different people), then the one that I find funniest will get their choice of (a) a used poker book, (b) 2 decks of copag cards, (c) refunded entry into the DADI 7, (d) the PC version of Stacked the game with Daniel Negreanu.
Now, two last things.
First, check out Hold'em Authority if you have a chance. It's a new site from Joe from Check-it-Down. He's going a different route, creating an info-based site, as opposed to the usual steam-of-consciousness blog. Good luck to him.
Second, while I was thinking about the last longer bets, I realized something. For anyone not involved, have no fear that the participants will play any differently (ok, maybe a bit tighter) than usual. That isn't the way we bloggers roll. It is more important to any of the individual bloggers to win the whole shebang then to win the side bets. So have no fear. I'll gladly bust Trip and GCox if given the opportunity.
How to Lose $0 While Withdrawing from your Bankroll
Monday, June 26, 2006
I've read about certain bloggers having problems in the significant others department. This game happens to be a time vacuum, so I sympathize completely. I suggested that they share some of their winnings. It's easy for a loved one to hear about the $1000 in winnings (or $50 for that matter) and think, "Where is this so-called money?" It doesn't make their life any easier or more extravagant. All it does is sit in an account, encouraging the poker player to continue "wasting" his/her time with the game with no discernible benefits.
Another common problem. Players want to feel like they get some tangible benefit from their poker play. As a result, they face that ever-present issue. Do you withdraw some funds and buy yourself that gadget/vacation/etc. you always wanted? Or do you let the money build moreso, and wait for the big day when you can withdraw money online and not lose your bankroll momentum.
I have a solution for both problems. For the significant other in your life, share the wealth. Use your poker play to earn them whatever they want, be it a shopping spree, a new TV, or whatever knicknack they desire. For you, earn yourself a gift, just by playing online.
There is one way to do both of these things without removing a cent from your bankroll. The answer, my friends is Vegas Poker Pro.com and Poker Source Online.com.
I originally found PSO through GCox, who, I believe, learned about it through DuggleBogey. I heard about VPP (sponsor of DADI 7) months later, thanks to a comment from a reader at this site. PSO and VPP are sites that offer free prizes for signing up at various poker sites through their links. PSO and VPP make money with referral fees. They pass on their profits to you by providing gifts. The gifts are varied, and of course consist of poker-related items like chips, books, DVDs and tables. But the real joy are the gift certificates to such places as Amazon.com, BestBuy and iTunes. You can even get AmEx cards from PSO (last I checked), but for the most bang for your buck, go with Amazon or BestBuy. Note, though, that your best move at PSO is to go for the PSO points, since they generally allow you to then get the gift card and still have PSO points left over. VPP is a big different though, and I discovered that it makes more sense for me to just choose an iPod $50 gift certificate rather than the 750 points, which will entitle me to $45 in gift certificates at most.
Now, some people might think, "Stupid Jordan, if you sign up for rakeback, you can earn your own rake on each site, as opposed to getting some dinky prizes once and only once per site." Well, fine, be an asshole then. But if you think about, you'll realize that you can finish the PSO or VPP promo, get the prize, earn the deposit bonus from the site, and then never go back again. I'm sure PSO/VPP would rather you stay and play there forever. But you don't owe them nothing!
OK, I know I've mentioned this all before, but some of you have still not taken a shot at these sites. It's just easy money waiting for you. And since the prizes are given out as actual goods or gift cards, you don't have to feel the sting of withdrawing from your bankroll.
I should probably mention, right about now, that you can also use your points or promos to get gift certificates to poker rooms like Party and Absolute. So, in fact, you can still use VPP/PSO to build your bankroll. But I wanted to focus on the other aspect, winning free stuff without that bankroll-withdrawal feeling.
So, what have I won through these sites. Hmm...let's see. A poker table top, 2 decks of Copag playing cards, $450 in Best Buy gift certificates which went toward my big screen TV, $200 in Amazon gift certificates that went to my newly ordered iPod nano (I finally bit the bullet), $50 in iTunes gift certificates to load up my iPod, over $200 in Party Poker gift certificates, and over $150 in other Amazon gift certificates. Oh yeah, I also got Poker Tracker software. Add that all up, and I've made over a grand from using these sites. Luckily, VPP added new rooms recently (Poker.com is especially easy to clear the bonus), so I'm gladly going to continue earning too.
Let's go back to those two original scenarios. Wifey Kim was bummed out one night. It didn't have anything to do with poker, but I had been playing a lot recently. I went to PSO, clicked on a couple of things and got an Amazon gift certificate emailed to me in a couple of days. I showed her the confirmation email right away. "Hey honey, when this comes through, it's all yours." She bought a couple of flip flops and other assorted items. The prospect of shopping is always a pick-me-up. I've also been wanting an iPod for some time now. I think I started discussing it in November of last year. But in the end, I could not rationalize spending $250+ on a gadget that was not crucial to my existence. I could, however, rationalize spending $40. That's what I did. The rest was all in gift certificates. Wifey Kim doesn't begrudge me these things. I do it to myself, out of a sense that it is irresponsible to spend money on such items. But it doesn't count if it's a gift card.
Now, go and earn yourself and your loved ones some gifts. And if you are going to sign up for a promo, contact me via email and I'll give you some hints. There are definitely easier bonuses to clear than others, and I know of a couple of more tricks to make your life easier. Here's a few to start:
- At PSO, if you go for the PokerShare promo, only deposit $50 at first and then you can immediately deposit more. Why? Because this way, when you are done earning your PSO bonus, you'll also get the 100% first deposit bonus ($50) released at the same time. Otherwise, you can deposit $100 at first, finish the PSO promo, but still be stuck at the site until you finish your cash bonus (or abandon it, as I did after I initially deposited $300).
- At VPP, sign up for Poker.com. It's a very easy bonus to clear.
- At PSO, sing up for Bodog. It is also very easy, and Bodog starts you out automatically with 50 of the 200 points needed to clear the bonus.
- At most sites, you may be able to run through the raked hands requirement faster if you multi-table. At Absolute, for instance, I would open three tables. One was a shorthanded table, where I played as I normally would. The other two were full ring games, where I played uber tight. After all, each hand you are dealt (regardless of whether you post a blind or just fold out of the blinds) counts toward your bonus. Note, though, that some sites only count hands that you contributed to (Doyle's Room).
Sunday, June 25, 2006
We've got a busy week planned. Not only do we have the usual slate of weekly blogger tournaments, but the DADI 7, NLHE, is scheduled for Thursday, June 29th. Sign up early, beeches! We've got some great freebie prizes in store. First place gets a $215 token from C-Mitch of O-Poker, an iPod Shuffle from PokerOnAMac.com, and 2000 VPP Points spread amongst four different players from Vegas Poker Pro.
Not too shabby for a little home-game-like online tournament. And remember, the password has changed to pokertrust.
Aside from the DADI tournament, I also have a vacation to Jamaica planned for next week. I leave a week from Monday, and it's really just crept up on me.
On the poker front, I've stuck with PLO8, mostly on Stars, working off a 20% bonus. It's been going well overall, even though I hit a couple of difficult second-best hands and a couple of more river suckouts that left me losing my entire $50 buy-in on several occassions. That's the nature of the beast, though, with Pot Limit Omaha Hi/Lo, so I've taken my lumps and I'm on top overall, fortunately often doubling up with the stone cold nuts while the kamikaze style players push all-in with their weak hands.
I've been considering why PLO8 has been a more profitable game for me of late (or at least it seems that way), and I suppose it comes down to a variety of reasons. First, the game requires a good analysis of outs and redraws, and while I'm no pro, I do feel like I have a better grasp than the average shmo playing PLO8. At least at my levels, I have to assume that the players are little more than NLHE players who like to gamble. That's number 2 actually. The players are (at least at the .25/.50 level) pretty bad. They buy in short regularly, and they just don't have a grasp of what a good hand is. For instance, I literally just won a hand with QQJ6 in the BB when I flopped the Q on the flop. I bet the whole way, pot the whole time, and I was called down by someone with AQ for TPTK. Hell, when the river made a flush, I considered checking, but then I realized where I was, and decided, correctly, that my opponent was actually on something a lot weaker (or they would have bet first on the rivered flush). In PLO8, TPTK may as well be spelled SHIT. So, generally, we get a variety of gambling players who think that ramming and calling with bad draws or mediocre hands is the way to success. Third, the hi/lo component allows me to play more hands (albeit cautiously), so I get the action I crave so much. This way, I don't fall into the trap of playing KTs in NLHE because I've gotten antsy, something that I should NEVER do, but still happens from time to time. Fouth, I think that PLO8 demands me to think more. I am so familiar with Texas Hold'em that I can put myself on auto-pilot, which actually stinks in comparison to focused poker. At PLO8, I need to read the board carefully, contemplate my hand, and then act. Finally, PLO8 is easier for me because the decisions are much more clear cut. TPTK will not get beaten by an overpair, because I'm laying down TPTK nine times out of ten. Sure, you fall into different problems more often, like K-high flushes running into A-high flushes (it happened to me at least once yesterday), but if you are familiar with the game, you come to expect these things.
I've been itching, lately, to get into some bigger buy-in tournaments live. I'm seriously considering making a go at a WPT/WSOP Winner's Choice event at Full Tilt. Otherwise, I'm keeping an eye out for the WPT schedule for late 2006 and the WSOP Circuit events for the same time period. I want to buy in to the cheapest event, likely a $300 or $500 buy-in, but truthfully, my roll couldn't take it. So, I have a few options. One, I can try selling shares in me, but I don't think that will get me too far, and I don't want to annoy people. Two, I can try live satellites, if they have them. Three, I can commit more of my bankroll than is appropriate, just so that I have the experience. Four, I can save what little money I make from this site and use it for the buyin. That last option seems best to me, but I don't know how practical it is.
I'm off to AC for the first weekend in August for a bachelor's party. The party is on Saturday, but Roose and I have a room for Friday, so we can get the party started early. We plan to play the 11am Saturday $50+10 at Showboat. If anyone will be in town, let me know.
Rumor has it that some bloggers may also be meeting up at Foxwoods in November (I think) for some WPT event or other. If anyone knows any details, shoot me an email or comment. I'd love to make it.
I've still not been running super well. One blogger, who shall remain nameless, shot me an IM yesterday, complaining about his bad run/luck as of late. I'll admit that I was a bit annoyed. I had been running bad myself, and my goal was to repeatedly remind myself that this is a game of variance. Staring in the face of someone else's bad beat story did little to comfort me. So, I laid it out. "It's luck, and it will all even out." "Not for me it won't." "Bullshit." I hope that you all remember this when you are running bad. Sure, you should strive to improve your game. Sure, you should avoid tilting, and maybe even take a break or change rooms so that you can rehabilitate your table (and mental) image. But in the end, you WILL lose sometimes. It's up to you to determine if these losses will be a tragedy that will bring you into the depths of self-pity, or a bit of variance that you will wait out. For me, I'm going for the latter, and for the most part, it's been good for me mentally, if not financially just yet.
And now, I shall briefly return to my old habit of twisting famous movie lines to reflect some sort of poker-ish statement.
Look up in the sky! It's a bird! It's a plane! It's Phil Ivey!
Throw it on the Wall
Friday, June 23, 2006
The cat is back and I'm worse for wear. While Mama High is in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, wifey Kim and I are playing host to Ernesto Fernandez-Madrid Montoya the cat, aka Ernie. When last we watched Ernie, I instituted a no-sleeping-in-our-bed rule, but last night, the rule was ignored. Boy was that cat cute when he decided to play capture the toes at 5:11am this morning. Of course I' m not tired or grumpy. Fucking cat! Let's try to put that behind us.
I was doing well last night, overall. Started by losing $35 in PLO8 at Party and then taking a break. When I came back, I spent about an hour earning $36 at Stars, recovering in 60 minutes what took 5 minutes to lose. The good part was that I DID recover. I also put in some time at a $50max NL room with Waffle and 23Skidoo. I won $5 there as well, after an excessively long period of time.
But then I did it. A 9-person PLO8 Turbo SNG on Stars for $16. I bubbled. Damn me! I wonder if I should give up on SNGs all together, but then I just realize that there will be times when I just won't win, and I tell myself to stop being such a puss.
The challenge is set, for all intents and purposes, for a Last Longer Stable Match between Team Extreme (Gary, Trip, and I) and a the deadly combo of Waffles, Hoy and Duggle. The stakes are still up in the air, but they will be in the $5 to $10 range. The team with the lowest combined place wins. If either team has all three players outlast the other team's three players, the winning team doubles there money.
The general challenge is still open, so if you have the testicular fortitude to face the three-headed monster, I just have two words for you: Bring it! And here are two more words: Bad Beat!
That's what I call a segway, since I'm about to talk about bad beat stories. I was chatting with an unnamed blogger last night who was running bad. I have to admit, I think I've reach bad beat story saturation point. So, I'm instituting the $1 rule, as set forth by some other esteemed bloggers. If you want to tell me a bad beat story, pay up. Otherwise, I don't give two rat's asses about the 2 outter. Poker happens, and the last thing that I need is to feign sympathy for someone else's misfortunes while I internally smile at the thought that I am not the only one getting his junk rearranged by fate. Schadenfreude indeed!
Okay, let's institute another DADI-related contest, just because. I'm reinstituting the Smack Talk contest. Rules are as follows: during the DADI event, talk some smack. Copy and paste said smack talk into a comment on this blog. If I receive three entries or more, I will choose the best smack talk. That person will win one of three things: (1) A copy of Daniel Negreanu's Stacked for the PC, (2) A copy of one of several poker books that I own, or (3) two deck of Copag cards. I'll even let you rename this crappy blog, if you rather have that.
Tonight I may go to Genoa with David Roose for the $50+10 tournament. I fear that it is a rebuy on Fridays, and if it is, Dave is not interested. No problem, as we have a backup plan to head over to X-Men 3, the Last Stand. I swear, they may take away my comic book geek license if I don't get to this movie. I already have tentative plans to see Superman at Imax with the wifey. I have a sinking suspicion that both movies will suck, but reviews suggest otherwise.
I guess I'm already running out of steam for today, so stop reading this and go do something productive. Jordan, out!
Thursday, June 22, 2006
An open challenge shall be made by myself, TripJax and GCox, founders and purveyors of the DADI tournaments. Any of ye with a team of three such bloggers, readers, or poker players, may challenge the triumverate of DADI Superstars in a team last longer bet.
Wagers can range from $1 to $10 per player.
Judging is based upon the combination of all three player's results. The lowest total wins. For instance, if I got out in 20th place, TripJax goes out in 10th, and GCox goes out in 5th, we will have a combined score of 35. If you win the tournament (1st), but your two teammates go out in 25th and 12th, your combined score would be 38, and you would lose.
Challenges are to be submitted in comments at any of our three sites or may be placed in the DADI site comments.
In addition, I would like to make this final announcement: The DADI password, pokertrust, is case sensitive. Please use all lower case letters when entering the tournament.
Wednesday, June 21, 2006
It's been a while since I've discussed playing the hammer (72o). Many people think that the suited hammer is cursed or is otherwise not hammerific. Well, I will admit that it is not for the faint of heart, but there is a lot of strength that can come out of the suited hammer.
So, remember, don't try this at home.
I was playing in the Mookie last night. We were on Level 5, 50/100 blinds, and I have 1680, one of the shorter stacks at our table (but not yet desperate). I'm two seats before the button. It folds to me and I make a small raise from 100 to 300 with the bloody hammer, 7h2h. Dr. Pauly, with about 2300 on my immediate left, calls. Surflexus, with over 8500 in the BB, calls.
The flop is Kc Kh Ah, which gives me the flush draw. Surf bets 100. I call. Dr. Pauly raises to 500. Surflexus raises to 900.
Now, at this point, the pot is 2450, and I have about 1380 left in front of me. If I call, I may as well push, since I will only have 480 left in front of me. If I push, I'll be getting about 1:2 on my money, since, beyond the 2450 in the pot, Surf will definitely call for 450 more. I might even get a call from Pauly which will further help my odds, but that would scare me that I'm facing a higher flush draw.
A cautious player would let this hand go, fearing a full house or a higher flush draw. Realistically, though, Surf and/or Pauly are playing an Ace-high or a K-high hand, and I'm facing beatable hands. Plus, this is a blogger event, which means: (a) I'd rather go for the double up and have a chance to really play, and (b) there is nobility in playing the hammer, even if it is bloody.
I push, Pauly folds, and Surf calls. He holds AdQs. The turn is a 3h, and I've made my flush. The river is inconsequential.
I eventually busted in 20th out of 57 people, a new high for the weekly Mookie. My last hand came at the hands of DuggleBogey, who called my preflop shortstacked all-in with his KT vs. my QQ. He flops his K and I go home.
I also lost about $10 in a PLO8 game on Party, mostly because I didn't have enough time to ride out the game. In the end, it was a -$20 night, but it does not phase me in the least. My play during the Mookie may have appeared spotty to onlookers, but I liked how I played, taking advantage of certain players, and relying on my reads.
This Friday, I'll probably be having a lazy night at home. If you are going to be on the virtual felt, hit me up with a comment, email, IM, whatever. I'm actually interested in getting a mini-blogger-reader-whatever game going, since I always enjoy them, but there are none on Fridays. Also, if anyone knows of some good Friday night MTTs, pass them along. Thanks for reading, and have yourselves a lovely day.
As part of the perks (hell, one of the ONLY perks) of having my own website, I received some free merchandise from the lovely folks at Stacked sent me a free copy of their game. Why, pray tell? Probably because they checked a variety of poker-related sites and didn't have time to realize the drivel coming out of my keyboard. But too late, suckers! I gots the game. And now, with that introduction, I shall proceed with the review.
Here is the thing about Daniel Negreanu's Stacked. It's a video game, not poker. It's essentially the NFL Blitz of poker, in fact. If you don't know NFL Blitz, here's a brief explanation. Blitz is a football game, but the tackles and action is over the top. It's not about sound football, but rather about having some fun running some characters around and kicking ass under the football backdrop. And so is Stacked.
I played the PC version of the game, and it took a while to install. But once there, the game was quick. I started Career Mode by making my character. He actually looked surprisingly like me, especially considering that the game lacked a variety of character types and accessories.
Once my character was made up, I entered an SNG in the first, bottom-rung casino. I played one SNG in total, but you can also play cash games. The players were pretty bad, but then again, I was at the lowest rung. In that regards, they actually played like the donkeys at Party. The action is pretty quick too, but it doesn't feel rushed, as though the blinds escalate too much (although they did seem to go up every 2-3 hands). In the end, I placed 2nd, happy to win some money....until I found out it was a winner takes all. The winner, by the way, was a pretty good player too. I actually watched to see how players were acting to see if they had set patterns, and sure enough, I did see some.
So, what's the deal with the game? I only played that one SNG, but I was impressed. But the real question is who is this game for? The only think I can think of are teens. They don't know the game, they don't have money, they've seen poker on TV, and now they can play at home for free over the Internet with other players! Sounds familiar? It should. It's the play money games at any online poker site.
So, I ask again, why buy this game? I can only come up with two answers. 1) You are going away where you will not have an Internet connection, but you still want to play some poker for fun. I played the game on the train ride from LI to NYC. No problem. 2) You are a videogame player who has a mild interest in poker.
So, to recap, in my brief experience, it is a good videogame, but a poor game of poker. It'll be fun for the casual player or the serious player looking to get a fix when there are no other options. Overall, I think it was a valiant effort, similar to an NFL Blitz, when the game that you have is not quite the real deal, but if you don't compare it to the original, it's pretty damn sweet. I don't know how the multiplayer action is, so no comment there.
Now, after all that, let me direct you to a post that has a different viewpoint. Random Space for Random Info really was displeased with the game. I'm not a shill, although I play one on the Internet, so I'm going to direct you to his post and his comments. Specifically, I asked him why he thought Stacked was not good, and he gave some good reasons. So take a look and see some of the pitfalls of the game. Just remember, though, that Stacked is Not Poker. Stacked is a Game about Poker.
Kick Ass in 3 Hands or Less & Your Decide #39
Tuesday, June 20, 2006
I appreciate everyone's patience during my downswing. I never intend to write woe-is-me posts, and certainly I hope you see that. However, I also greatly appreciate your comments, so thank you greatly.
Since you've been so patient, I've got something to cheer you all up. Well, maybe not cheer YOU up, but cheer ME up and give you at least one day's respite from my recent bitchin' and moanin'.
I won last night, $55 in total. I played a 12 person shorthanded SNG on Starts with Drewspop, and Waffle (and possibly someone else, although I think that was it), and moneyed in 3rd place. The 2nd place winner was sitting out, so that irked me a bit, but at that point in the game I was so shortstacked that my play (re-raising with KTs into AT preflop) was warranted.
I also won some dough at .25/.50 NL on Stars and a variety of PL Omaha stakes on Stars and Party Poker.
Overall, I was in a much better place than usual. At the Stars cash game (and in the SNG at times) I just bombarded my competition with bets. Players were buying in for the $10 minimum, so playing the role of the big stack was easy. Plus, there is nothing more fun that pushing around a table.
I went on a particularly fun three-hand run, and as soon as the third hand ended, I knew I had something post worthy. So here it is, Jordan Kicks Ass in 3 Hands or Less.
It's .25/.50 NL full table, with a $50 max buy-in and a $10 min buy-in. I had bought in for the max and was playing at the table for about 30 minutes or more, during which I took turns folding everything and then betting everything. Swings happen and at this point, I had $38.70, with three players less than me and three players with more (the table wasn't 100% full at the time).
I'm dealt 5s7s in the BB. Gun with $19 makes it $2 from the button after everyone folded. The SB, Snow with $21, called. I called the $1.50. This is a Waffle manuever, hoping to hit it big with a less than stellar hand because if I do, the payoff will be sweet. Also, the button could easily be on a steal with less-than-stellar cards, and the call from the BB did not concern me.
The flop is 6d 4h 9d. I have an open-ended straight draw, but I usually mentally negate two of my outs (8d and 3d) because it would fill a flush, and straights vs. flushes = busted. The SB opens up the betting with $1 into a $6 pot. I call, as does the Gun (button).
The turn is the Jc. This is good, because it didn't fill the flush. It's bad because it didn't fill my straight, and it may've paired a looser player with KJ, AJ, QJ or QT. Remember that this table had not wow'ed me with their intelligence and prowess (although I did appreciate their fear).
Sno bets $1.50 into a $9 pot. He better be trying to milk us with these sorts of bets. Whatever the case, I have to call, simply because of math. With 6 outs (and realistically, probably 8), and 46 possible cards to come on the river, my odds of hitting are roughly 1 in 8 or 13% give or take (I'm doing this in my head, but feel free to get one of those nifty odds calculators). The bet is 1.50 into 9, which is 1 in 6. But the implied odds are huge if I hit. Two-pair, a set, or even TPTK are likely to pay me well, and I have both of these guys covered, so my exposure is limited to an extent too.
Unfortunately, Gun raises $3.50 to $5, total. Snow folds. So there is now $15.50 in the pot, and $3.50 to call. The bet from Gun is scary, but it also reassures me that I will get paid off if I hit. I call.
The river is an 8h. I hit my straight. I get a bit overzealous though. Gun has about $10 left in front of him. Let's make it look like a steal. I push all-in for more than he has. He folds quickly. I've now earned some maniac cred. I doubt anyone has me on a straight. Gun was probably bluffing or was going for the flush.
I decide to taunt the table and come up with the ever-witty, "WARRIORS, COME OUT AND PLAYEEYAY!!"
I like to play rushes. So, on the very next hand, on the SB, I'm dealt QJo, now with a $49 stack. A new player, Lock, bought in for the max in EP/MP and checks when it is folded to him. I call, and the BB, Fish ($59), checks.
The flop is Ad 4s As. There is nothign there for me, but I do have two things going. First, it is fairly unlikely that either player has an Ace, since two are already out, and if it was any decent ace, I'd probably be facing a raise. Second, I'm first to act, which is ideal for a steal here. I bet the pot, $1.50. Fish folds. So far, so good. Lock calls. Uh oh. I put him on a 4, a low pocket pair like 6s, or a flush draw.
The turn is a 6d, which is rather inconsequential. However, he's shown me that he is willing to call a bet, and I don't want to throw in good money with the bad. I check. He checks too.
The river is a Td. I've dodged the flush, but in truth, I don't have anything anyway. I can bet out here, but I'm only going to get called by a winner, and I don't think I can get this guy to fold. Besides, he just sat down and I don't have any read on him. I check. He checks....and I win.
Elated, I type: "haha," and then "Q high?" and then "really?" He had 25o. Now everyone has seen that, not only am I a taunting prick, but I'm also bluffing, albeit weakly. Let's really have fun.
One of the things I like to do at the online table is have some fun referncing video games. To me, its just goofy fun, but I suppose it also reflects the mentality that it isn't poker when its on a computer. It's just a videogame where the points are $$.
One of my favorite refernces is from NBA Jams. In NBA Jams, if you hit three baskets in a row, your player is on fire (as the announcer says it, "He's on Fire!"). If you are a male born between 1977 and 1983, you likely know what I'm talking about. A lot of people outside that range do too.
I often state, "one more and I'm on FIRE!" in the chat box after winning two hands in a row. The problem with the line is, it makes everyone hyper aware that you are going for a trifecta, and they know you are playing with dookie. Even so, I had to drop it, "one more and I'm on FIRE!" Let's see how that last hand went.
Third hand in a row. I'm finally in position on the button. This is the real hand to watch, the others were just set ups. In fact, lets make this the Degree All-In Moment. Um, wait. I mean:
You Decide #39
We know the setup. I'm dealt with Qs2h $51.60 in front of me. It's a far cry from a good hand. But I'm on a rush and in position. My good buddy Lock limps with $48. No fear there. Gun limps as well, with $10 left. I limp, the SB folds and Doom, the BB, checks.
The flop is a surprisingly helpful 2c Js Jh. Yeah, I just have 2s, but my kicker is ok (for someone playing a 2) and I'm really just fearing a Jack or an overpair to 2s. They are both possibilities with all of these limpers.
The blinds check and Lock does as well. Gun (remember, he only has $10 in front of him), bets $2. I take my time. The chekers might have been slowplaying, but if they did, it'd be the first time I saw it from either of them. Lock doesn't appear to have the capacity, and Doom seems fairly straight forward. I decide to go for the kill with an isolating bet. I raise $10 on top. If Gun has me beat, I only lose what he has, which isn't much. However, he might be on a steal here with desperation sinking in. Also, if he doesn't have a Jack, he may fold an overpair to my 2s, because, frankly, he folded on the river bet two hands ago when I pushed him all in (after he led out most of the way).
The other players fold quickly, and Gun calls. The turn is a 6d. The river is a 2s. As it turned out, I hit my 2-outter. Gun had 33. I exclaim: "HE'S ON FIRE!!!", do some goal tending, and then get back to folding.
Last night, this stretch of three hands felt amazing. Looking back at it, it was really just sheer aggression, followed by some luck on the last hand of the series. However, I think, overall, I played the hands well because I was constantly putting my opponents to the decision. It helped that I was the big stack in most of the confrontations.
One last hand before I go. In my 12 person shorthanded (6p tables) tournament, we are at 100/200 blinds and there are 5 players at the table when I'm dealt AA in the SB. I have 1400 in chips. It folds to the button (3500 in chips), who min raises to 400. Thank god! I see an opportunity to slowly get all-in (instead of the usual push here), so I min raise back. I don't want to scare this guy away, since I need me some chips. He calls after the BB folds.
The flop is a glorious 8h 3c As. I have to check, since I want some action and the Ace might scare any pocket pairs. He pushes all-in. I call. The rutn is Th. The river is 2c. The cards flip and my set holds up against A7c.
It's Easy with Aces!
That's all for today. Enjoy!
I was doing fairly well for the night when I decided to try to earn a $40 free money bonus at Party Poker. I sat at a .50/1 full No Limit table with $100. I dealt with some tough situations, including top set of 9s eventually losing to middle set of 6s after the 6s went runner runner flush. I also had to lay down JJ preflop when it was raised from EP, I called, the player to my left reraised large, a player to his left called, and the original bettor called. I folded, under the suspicion that my JJs were dominated by AA or the like. Sure enough, two people go to show down after the K88 flop. One guy had QQ, just as expected. The other had Q8! Not the brightest bulb.
So, imagine my joy when I get KK. I bump it up big, since one player has been very loose against me, and he had just won the hand before it. I had been catching great starting cards, and in that hand, I held JJ. The flop was all unders and I bet out. The turn was a Q and I continued betting. The river was a K and I slowed down a bit. My opponent did too. He had QJs (with no flush draw), so he was calling my large preflop bet and pot-sized flop bet with crap. He's a dream player at any table.
So, I have KK and I know this guy is a crappy player, so I bump it to $5, which is no egregious, but higher than I'd usually raise in this situation. Well, he thinks but eventually takes the bait. The flop is KAA and I'm ecstatic. The only things that have me beat are AK or AA, and I don't think either is likely.
The player is loose, so I just go for it, pushing in my significant remaining stack. He calls and the turn and river are unimportant. The cards flip. I have KK for a full house Ks full of Aces. He has...POCKET ACES, for quad Aces. To recap, it was KKKAA v. AAAAK. I didn't stand a chance.
And that's how I lost $100.
The epitome of inevitable, I don't blame myself for my play. Sometimes, that's just how poker is.
Around the Corner
Monday, June 19, 2006
DADI 7 is around the corner. For more details check the DADI website, or check the post, below. One notable change is the password, which is now PokerTrust. If you could do me a great favor, please take that perty banner or text or whatever and give DADI a little bit of love on your site. I know I'm pandering, but we usually start pimping for DADI a month in advance, and we don't even have two weeks this time. That with the password change means we can take all the help we can get!
I've turned the corner mentally. Sometimes I use this forum as my own public therapy session. After some hard knocks, I posted a bitch-fest about how I was "gambling" instead of playing poker as some sort of masochistic ritual. I think it was true at the time, but often after a post like that, I can put it behind me. By the time I write about it, I've already identified the problem. By the time I get comments, I'm already reflecting on it. By the time I'm back at the felt, I'm already working on it. That middle step, reading your comments, is a huge component in the formula, so thank you all for giving your two cents.
Hoyazo asked about my sports betting of late in a recent comment. I have been on fire, once again. If I didn't throw away $40 in misplaced bets and $45 in a tilting attempt to undo some damage, I'd be up about $180 (not including the money currently placed on pending bets. As it is, I'm actually up about $100. For a guy who started with $47 to gamble with, that's pretty damn good.
Since I've made those misplaced bets (betting the under 2.5 instead of betting on Argentina and the Netherlands), I won my misplaced under 2.5 on Mexico v. Angola for $20, and lost the $45 I put on Mexico to win. Yuck! The next day was much better. I lost $15 on Czech OVER Ghana, but won $10 on Portugal OVER Iran and $10 on the Under 2.5. I also won $22 on USA +.5 OVER Italy (i.e., I win if US ties or wins), which is the first of three underdog bets I won in a 2 day run. On Sunday, I also won with a bet on Korea +.5 against France, and Japan +.5 against Croatia, for about $37 total, before losing $10 on the Over in the Brazil-Australia game. I've already won $10 on Switzerland OVER Togo today, but lost $10 on the UNDER 2.5 for the Ukraine/Saudia Arabia matchup. The last bet currently pending is the UNDER 2.5 for Tunisia/Spain, starting at 3PM EST today.
Okay, enough of that. This ain't High on Sports Betting! What about the poker? I lost a token SNG (bought in with a $24+2 token to win a $75 token) at Fulltilt on Friday night, and also lost a $30+3 Limit MTT on Poker.com which only had 6 players, and therefore was not much of an MTT. Yesterday, I won $10.50 at .10/.25 NL Omaha 8b at Stars and $2 or so at 2/4 LO8. So, it was an up day, but not by much.
And that was all. I'm not playing alot. I'll keep it to one or two SNGs or one MTT predominantly per night, or, even better, an hour, at most, at a cash game. The SNGs and MTTs have not been profitable, and I'm here to make money.
My attitude is a lot better. Last night, I felt like playing some more, but it wasn't that good feeling. It was that compulsion feeling. Instead, I watched some Deadwood and eventually hit the hay. I guess self-control is the remedy for what ails me, and I plan on keeping my self-control as a priority.
DADI 7: DADI I'm Coming Home
Sunday, June 18, 2006
It's time, once again, to clear your calendar and follow the siryn's call to the next DADI event! Who said you can never go home again? No, really, who? I just googled it and couldn't find squat.
Whoever it was, they were wrong! Because DADI is returning home to No Limit Hold'em! It's the usual, but we've gotten some great sponsors to provide additional prizes, and a blogger has even offered up a tremendously generous gift to the first place winner.
Also, don't forget that the DADI has a new password, PokerTrust. What the hell is the Poker Trust? You'll find out when we are good and ready, trust us.
So, what does DADI 7 have that no other tournament on the web (that I know of, at least) has? Besides the usual cash prize, the following prizes are going to be added to the prize pool:
First Place: Will receive a $215 token to enter a PokerStars tournament, generously donated by CMitch of O-Poker!
Second Place: Will receive an iPod Shuffle, courtesy of PokerOnAMac.com, your destination for poker...on a Mac!
Third Place: Will receive 800 VPP Points*, courtesy of VegasPokerPro.com, where you can earn great prizes like chips, gift certificates and more just for trying a new poker site!
Fourth Place: Will receive 400 VPP Points**, courtesy of VegasPokerPro.com.
The Bubble: Will receive 400 VPP Points**, courtesy of VegasPokerPro.com.
Bounty on VPP_Dave: 400 VPP Points**, courtesy of VegasPokerPro.com.
Check out the DADI website for future updates!
* Points are redeemable at the VPP store for various prizes, including $50 in Amazon.com or BestBuy gift certificates for the 800 points awarded.
**Points are redeemable at the VPP store for various prizes, including $25 in Amazon.com or BestBuy gift certificates for the 400 points awarded.
Friday, June 16, 2006
I've been sports betting a lot lately. You've noticed, aye? I'm sure you've also noticed that my poker game has degenerated. It's a rough time right now in HighOnPokerville. It's nothing particular. Work is going well. Wifey Kim is still the best. I've just been, well, out of sorts.
CJ, in his comment regarding You Decide #38, stated that after the turn, I was just gambling. He's right. I've been gambling a lot lately, instead of playing poker. The question is, why?
Some people get stressed out and become control freaks. Everything has to be as they say and as they want it. When a teenage girl decides not to eat anymore so she can lose weight, it's often said that they are trying to control their weight because it's the only thing they think they have control over. I know the feeling. After my first serious girlfriend dumped me the summer going into my junior in High School, I pretty muched stopped eating. At the time, it wasn't about control, or so I thought. I was just really heartbroken, and I stopped eating because I was depressed. I blamed my weight partially for being dumped. I wasn't fat, but I wasn't fit either. Over the course of the summer, I lost 28 lbs. I dropped from to 171 to 143. My mother worried that I was emaciated.
Eventually, with my new body and time behind me, I got over her. I got back to eating and I was getting chicks. I left that all behind me. Most of it, at least. Apparently, I've gone the other way now.
Instead of trying to control something, I think I'm just trying to lose it. Lose control. Let fate decide. I'm too tired, unskilled, unlucky, incompetent to earn what I want. I must put money on sports that I know little about, or play poker without really thinking, without really controlling my game or my fate.
I told you that I placed bets on Argentina, Netherlands, and Mexico. I was wrong. Apparently, I clicked the wrong thing and bet on the under 2.5 goals for each of the games. I lost $40 already (Argentina and Netherlands games), and I'm set to lose another $20 in the Mexico game. I tried to cover by betting on another site for Mexico, but I had to put out $45 to win $15, so it's really not going to do much for me.
What the hell am I doing? I'm self destructing, that's what. Let's admit it. Freud is somewhat right. Gamblers are just losers trying to punish themselves. I'm not trying to be a gambler. I'm trying to be a poker player. Shit.
Bottom line, I need to check myself. This is the wakeup call. I just hope I don't hit the snooze button.
You Decide #38, and the Min BuyIn Experience
Thursday, June 15, 2006
You Decide #38
Let's get right to it today. I was playing in the "WWDN: Not The" last night (yeah, I know, the tournament title could use a change) and eventually lost, out of the money. However, I did experience a particuarly interesting hand which really got my analytical juices flowing. After mopping those juices up, I decided to make the hand into You Decide #38:
You are in a blogger-heavy tournament with 20 players to start. You are down to probably 13 or so. It's level 3 (25/50 blinds), and you have 1375 in chips, down from 1500. You've also just sat out the last fifteen minutes, so you don't know how the table is playing, and they don't necessarily have a read on you (other than the fact that you are me, i.e., Action Jordan). There are 6 people at the table.
In the SB you get dealt 8sTs. Chipleader SLB with over 4k in chips min-bets from 50 to 100 UTG. It folds to you. You call. The pot is 225.
The flop is Js9s3h. You have an open straight-flush draw. You check, and he bets 350. You call. You have 925 left. The pot is 925.
The turn is a Kh. You check. He bets 3k+, obviously putting you all in. What do you do? I thought for a moment. I don't like going all in on a draw, but this was a straight flush draw. Was he bluffing? Likely not, but with my small stack, it was a possibility. Was he betting second pair from the flop (9s)? That was a possibility too, since the 350 bet seemed suspicious. If that were the case then I'd have an addition 3 outs (to make a pair of Tens). I ultimately decided to call.
He had JJ. The river was a 7h. I hit my straight and won the hand.
Apparently, according to DuggleBogey, my call on the turn was correct, mathematically. But what about those intangible things, like betting your tournament life? Also, how about the call on the flop? Was that optimal? Let me know!
As you probably know by now, I've been running bad at the tables. I was stuggling just to stay near even last night (I eventually ended up d0wn about $20 for the evening), when I decided to try buying into a NL ring game with the minimum. So, I went to .50/1 and bought in for $20. In the very first hand (I posted in MP) I get dealt Q6o. I check and the two blinds and I see a flop of Q69, rainbow. Looking good! The BB bets $1 in to the $3 pot. I raise to $4. He called. The turn was a blank. He checked and I pushed all-in for $15 more. He called with QT, top pair, crappy kicker. I doubled up.
At first, I though that was a success in the Min Buy In Experiment. In hindsight, it cuts two ways. If I want to look for the bright side, perhaps he played harder against me since I was shortstacked and he knew he wasn't too exposed. Also, maybe he thought I was a poor player or a push monkey since I started with a short stack. On the other hand, what if he just sucked? Maybe I could've gotten more out of him?
Overall, though, I'm going to say it was a success. Without the short stack, I may've bet at the turn to try to "maximize profits" and scared him off. The push with $15 looks like a scared move, and I could've gained value from the appearance of desperation.
In the end, all I know is that someone will probably want to write a comment about the evils of buying in short. I know, I know. But sometimes, you just need to change things up.
I don't actually intend to sway anyone. Hell, I don't want to really. But I thought I'd take .5 minutes to explain why I will not be playing in the Sunday Blogger Freeroll at PokerStars.
Let me start by saying that PokerStars is a great site, and its wonderful that they offer bloggers opportunities like this. However, the tournament this year is ridiculous, and it just doesn't make sense for me to (a) play and (b) put up their banner to advertise if I'm not going to play.
Why not play? Let's take a look:
- The event is scheduled for Father's Day...and my father hates my poker degeneracy. But, you know what, you can't control me dad! Except for on Father's Day, when I will renounce my poker and homosexual life style and pretend to be interested in sports for reasons other than gambling. And, no, I'm not REALLY gay. Just ask wifey Tim...er, I mean Kim.
- The competition is HUGE! Last year, there were over 2000 players. Since these blogs are free to start AND people from last year probably missed out but heard about the event, I'm sure that the number will be even higher. What does this mean? I played a 1000 person tournament a while ago and placed 6th and 5 and a half hours. This game will likely take longer, ESPECIALLY because of all of the players who are going to sit out for the first 2 hours.
- The prizes are weak. Here's the thing. Unless you get in the top 10, the prizes are a waste. Now, top 10 out of (let's underestimate) 1000 players means that you need to be in the top 1% (and realistically a lot higher than that) to get anything worthwhile. 11th through 20th place gets a freeroll into a WSOP satellite. I mean, puhlease! You win a chance to win a seat after 5 hours? 21st through 40th get an iPod nano. Now you are talking! Truthfully, this is the only prize worth winning, from what I can see. 41st through 50th get a freeroll to the Sunday Million. 51st through 54th get a jacket that you won't want to wear in public (unless you are in the midwest, in which case, ROCK THAT JACKET!)
- I can't use the top prizes. The 10th spot is a HU match against Wil Wheaton for $1000. Now, that is pretty cool. But 9th to 2nd get a seat into a $1500 WSOP event. Even if I could make it out there, I don't see anything about expenses paid, so I assume that will come out of pocket. The top spot gets a $12,000 WSOP ME seat, which presumably means $2000 for expenses. Not bad at all...if you can take 2 weeks off to play in the Main Event. Not me though.
I've been putting off posting today because I'm not feeling too inspired. But it's time to get going. This won't be a poker-heavy post, hence the title. But I will touch on a little bit right off the bat.
I lost $30-40 last night. Basically, I started off in a Rio, which has changed slightly. The buy-in is now $20+3.50 instead of +3. That wouldn't be a big deal (it still isn't really), but when I moneyed in third place (out of 6!) I only won $0.50. WOOHOO! I then played a Heads Up SNG and lost. I was card dead and stupid, to boot. The last hand saw me push with mid pair Ts against a flush draw on the flop. I was shortstacked. The turn completed the flush and that was that. Finally, I played a $20+2 SNG on Poker.com, only to lose in 8th after over an hour! Insane. So, yeah, let's not talk about poker right now, since there are other interesting stuff.
Thanks for all of the comments on my treatise regarding buying in for the minimum. I love those discussions. I am especially proud that this site has lately been a hotbed of civil discourse. There is no flaming or insults. It's civilized debate. Thanks everyone.
So, World Cup, aye? That's not all of the sports betting I've been doing. On the advice of little bro Dave, I put $10 on the Mets last night (won) and $10 against the Yankees (lost). I also put $20 on Winky Wright to beat Taylor in their match tonight. This concludes the section where I bet on things without the slightest comprehension of what I'm doing.
But the World Cup! Now that's a whole other thing. Yesterday, I lost by betting on Ukraine over Spain ($10), won in the last minutes with Germany over Poland ($30 profit), and lost on Saudia Arabia over Tunisia in the last minutes ($10), for a profitable day, overall. Today, I won my morning bet on Ecuador over Costa Rica ($20), and lost my Tie bet on England v. Trinidad & Tobago ($5; on the logic that it cost too much to be on England, and T&T had no chance of winning). I've also put $11.30 to win $10 profit on Paraguay to tie or beat Sweden. So far so good there, as its still tied at half time.
So, the sports betting continues.
Now I need your help. I have, what they call, anticipatory buyers remorse. After selling my Nevada Jacks gift certificate that I won in the PSO Blogger Freeroll, and earning over $165 in gift certificates via PSO, I can afford a 4G iPod Nano. But I can't help but get the feeling that it is a bad idea. In the morning, I prefer to listen to the radio when I can (i.e., when I'm not in the subway, which makes up 60% of my commute). Is there something worthwhile that I can put on my iPod that I can't on my dinky 516mb (or whatever) Sandisk mp3 player? Is there something better to spend the $250 on? Shit people, let me know if you have an iPod or if you know of a place to get good iPod content, cause I could use some advice.
That's it for today. Shittiest post ever.
When Min is Correct
Wednesday, June 14, 2006
Sooted recently wrote about his return to NL cash games. His current strategy is to buy in for the minimum to limit his exposure. Of course, many players are of the mind that you should always buy in for the max. One of the most vocal is SirFWalGman. According to a Waffle comment at Sooted's site, "Poker is all about maximizing your profit on the edges you have not minimizing your risk." Therein lies the issue, and actually the solution to the question of when is it correct to buy in for the minimum. I agree with Waffle generally, but I think that those people who are max-buy in fans should also be able to see why a player might be correct in buying in for the minimum.
Now, this is nothing new, I assure you, but I'd like to discuss it anyway.
An inexperienced player or a player who is unsure of his post-flop skills would actually be assisted by buying in short. Essentially, this will minimize the amount of options for the unskilled player, and in doing so, will eliminate some of the opportunities to make mistakes.
On the flipside, the confident, skilled player wants to have the max buy-in, since he wants to have all of his weapons ready, including the threatening all-in, the continuation bet (and second continuation bet on the turn), and manipulating pot odds.
Let's take a look at 2 scenarios in which stack sizes control play.
In Scenario 1, Joe Poker buys in for $10 at a .50/1 NL game. He has 10x the BB. In his first hand, he is dealt AA under the gun (i.e., in the first seat to the left of the big blind. He raises to $3 to induce some callers. The button calls, but all of the other players fold. The pot is $7.50 (his $3, button's $3, SB's $.50, BB's $1). The flop comes down 8s9hTs (two spades). Joe Poker decides to push. His hand is done, no matter what happens. If he is called or folded to, he has no more decisions to make.
Scenario 1 might go another way. We'll call this Scenario 1A. On the same flop, Joe might decide to check. If his competition bets $3, Joe is pot committed and has to essentially push anyway. If his opponent bets Joe all-in, with AA, Joe will be hard pressed to fold. In most cases, he is getting all in before the turn. That's the bottom line.
Scenario 2, Joe Poker buys in for $100 at .50/1 NL. He had 100x the BB. In his first hand, he is dealt AA under the gun. He raises to $4, because he has more money and he wants to build the pot. The button calls, but everyone else folds. The pot is now $9.50. The flop comes down 8s9hTs. Joe likes the flop and bets $10 to try to win the hand right away. The button, though, pauses for a minute before raising to $50. Joe is in a tough spot. He's not experienced, but he has Aces. Maybe he folds. In that case, he may've been folding the best hand. But let's say he calls. Now the turn is a Queen. Joe is scared of the straight and checks. The button senses weakness and pushes all-in. Now Joe has to fold.
See the difference? You might play Scenario 2 differently, but that's because you are confident in your abililties. Maybe you decide to re-raise all-in on the flop, and push out any draws. Maybe you don't like AA when faced with all of those draws and a raise, and you fold right there and are correct to do so. But you aren't Joe, and Joe isn't you. He sucks. So, if he wants to play at these stakes, Scenario 1 is preferable. When he wins the hand, he'll feel great. If he loses, he'll rebuy. He only lost $10, after all.
And that's all there is to it. Buying in for the minimum is a smart move when you are outclassed by your competition, or when you are uncertain of your abilities. Just writing about it makes me want to buy in for the minimum at a 5/10 table to see what I can do!
I have written a lot lately about the path to success in poker. Some of my recent titles include The Path to Destruction, The Way It's Supposed to Be, and Not the Way to Play. All of this introspection into the game and, specifically, how I've been playing, is really an outgrowth of my desire to improve in the face of the reality that this game somtimes has a compulsive pull on me.
Last night, I was able to harnass that pull. The result was a +$40 night, which in and of itself is no real accomplishment, but is at least a step in the right direction.
I had intended not to play at all, remember? Well, wifey Kim insisted on watching the Real World/Road Rules Challenge and I just couldn't take it. I mean, come on! How many times do I have to see the same freakin' celebrity-wannabes compete in senseless physical challenges and hook up with each other like some sort of backwoods family reunion.
What's a man to do? I know. Poker.
The night started with about 30 minutes of 1/2 Limit at Poker.com. I signed up at Poker.com through VegasPokerPro, a site that gives you free things for signing up at poker rooms through them. In this case, I'm going for the 750 VPP points, in an effort to earn enough points for some decent Amazon gift cards, to be used toward the purchase of an iPod. I've already gotten $120 in Amazon gift cards from PokerSourceOnline, so I'm working toward something here.
I finished the Poker.com VPP bonus in no time. I highly recommend it, too, since PSO only requires you to earn 1000 points, and that amounts to very little time (I think for me 3-4 days, tops without even trying) at Poker.com.
Since I still have a $100 bonus to earn (which requires 10,000 points, over 10x the VPP bonus), I have decided to stick it out there for a little bit. Last night went smoothly, winning about $15 or so at a relaxing full ring 1/2 Limit table. By the time the half-hour was done, I decided to lock in the profit (any profit would do well for my confidence) and spend more time with the wifey.
Wifey Kim eventually went to sleep, and I was still up. I decided to shop around for a game to play. Nothing was really interesting me. I was in the tournament mood, but I didn't want to start an MTT for fear that I'd once again stay up too late. I decided on a Rio 6 person SNG. I played smart and tight, limping with AJ preflop as opposed to raising, and folding in the small blind when my cards were utterly miserable. I even laid down some otherwise decent hands to preflop raises. My goal is to simply money in the top 3 out of 6 spots, so to start off, I just want to avoid confrontations. The game was a long one, but eventually I was able to scrape by into 3rd before switching to a more aggressive play. I eventually busted 2nd for about $12.50 profit.
After that, I considered turning in, but I still felt like I had one more in me. I went for my second Rio, and once again, the competition was stiffer than it used to be. I was still able to play a smart game, though, and placed 2nd once again, creating a 2 game streak. If I can money in the 1st or 2nd place spots 4 more times in a row, I got a $300 bonus coming to me. But let's not get ahead of ourselves.
So, what did I do differently? First, I was stone-cold sober for most of the time I was playing (accent on "most"). Second, I was playing one game at a time. Third, I was not bonus chasing for the sake of bonus chasing. Fourth, I was paying attention when it mattered (as I freely admit that I was surfing the web during the beginnings of the Rios).
It's that simple. I just need to screw down and play poker, instead of this mindless gamblefest that I've been prone too lately. And while we are talking about a mindless gamblefest, let's get to my sports betting.
A HUGE thanks to Mr. Gross, who suggested that I bet on the Mavericks +4 last night. Also, thanks to Own the Flop, who seconded the suggestion. A couple of days ago, I had $7.23 left on Paradise Poker. I put it into their sportsbook, which immediately gave me double my money as a bonus, $14.50 in total, approximately. I then bet on the Under 188.5 in Game 2 of the NBA finals and won that bet, with about $28 total in my account. I put it all on the Mavs last night and they came through, bringing me to about $58. Thanks guys, I needed it.
Spain is whooping Ukraine as we speak, up 2 nil (thanks Acorn for the soccer grammar lesson), so that bet doesn't look too good, but I still have some decent dough on Germany over Poland later. Wish me luck.
That's all for now folks. Be good to yourself and each other.
The Leak: World Cup Fever
Tuesday, June 13, 2006
Man, I'm loving this World Cup! I first started watching in 1994 (I believe). Even then, my buddies and I would gather in my living room and immediately exchange bets. I didn't know much about anything then, and I still don't know much, but soccer was/is exciting, and betting wasn't too hard either.
World Cup bets are just naturally easier for me. This is primarily because we are dealing with national teams instead of local teams that trade players. Brazil is a soccer nation and the USA is not. Germany has top players and who the hell knows what's going on in Poland.
With that in mind, let's go through today's recap. I placed bets on all three games, and while I lost one bet, I'm still ahead.
Korea beat Togo, 2 to 1, even though Togo was the favorite. Fortunately, the distant memory of Korea's top 4 finish last year, the Korean's great run during the winter Olympics (not soccer, but athleticism and training is displayed nonetheless), and the fact that I thought Togo was a take-out sandwich shop made this a great last minute pick for me. I placed $10 and won $14 or so. Nice!
France tied with Switzerland. I should've known the fucking French would just give up. Mark my words, if I ever bet on France again, you can all personally kick me in the nuts. I bet about $28 and lost it.
Brazil beat Croatia, 1 to nil (that's soccer-speak for 0). No surprise here. I placed a second bet on Brazil after France's loss to try to recover some. They came through for me, netting $20 profit.
Tomorrow, I've already placed my 2 wagers of the day. My picks are $57 on Germany to kick some Polish ass. They did it in WWI. They did it again in WW2. You know, this reminds me of a joke. A Polish guy walks into the bar, holds out his hand and says, "Hey guys, look what I almost stepped in!" I didn't say it reminded me of a funny joke.
In addition, I've decided to speculate, and threw down $10 to win $10.30 on Ukraine over Spain. Ukraine only needs to tie for me to win. After today's French game, it really sunk in how a tie is not only possible, but at times likely. Spain and Ukraine seem to be relatively even teams (after all, Ukraine is the underdog and they are only paying $10.30 on the wager), so I'm hoping for a tie. I'd be happy with a win.
One last thing. On the advice of some expert comments (thanks guys), I've also put money on the Mavericks getting 4 points against the Heat tonight. I would've thought that the Mavs would be giving 4, but I guess it is a Miami game, so that probably factored in. Of course, I know jack shit, so don't listen to me!
I've been playing like a junkie lately. Last night, I found myself on my couch alternatively clicking register/unregister into a $20+2 Noble Poker MTT at 11pm. The jonesing eventually go the best of me, and 2 hours later, I was busting out of the money and way past my appropriate bed time.
I think I need to slow down.
Basically, since the AC loss, I guess I've been trying to win back my losses, instead of playing my A-game. So, I'm going to be a lot more cautious tonight, and hopefully, I'll skip playing all together. I say hopefully because the lack of interesting television and wifey Kim's early bed time can be a tempting thing. We shall see.
Whatever the case, I played at Mondays at the Hoy last night. In case you haven't heard, Hoyazo (aka HammerPlayer), has started a weekly $20+2 tournament on Mondays. Come along next week and join the fun. Details are on Hoy's site.
The sports betting has been the one light in my gambling life. I put some money on Korea over Togo this morning on a last minute hunch. The odds were something like $10 to win $11 profit, so I've continued my winning record, now 3-0. I have also placed bets on Frace over Switzerland. In fact, I placed the bet twice accidentally, for $14 to win $10 and $14.70 to win $10 (i.e., a combined $28.70 to win $20 profit). After reading a bit about France, I'm a little worried, but I'm also on a winning streak, so I'll let time tell what my fate will be. Finally, I got $26 to win $10 on Brazil over Croatia. This should be an easy win.
That's all for now. I needed to admit that I've been on the wrong path lately. It's time to reevaluate and refocus. Wish me luck. I'll need it.
The Leak: World Cup
Monday, June 12, 2006
It's time once again for Jordan to find a new way to lose his bankroll. You may recall that I had a post called The Leak: Mayorga v. De La Hoya just a month or so ago. I picked Mayorga to win, and sure enough, I was wrong. I don't profess myself to be any sports betting genius. In fact, I'm just the opposite. I know little to nothing about most of the sports/games I gamble on. I try to read up a bit, and I listen for that inner hunch. For these reasons, I rarely do sports betting. Simply put, I know it is -EV. But since I love me some action, I decided to perk up for the World Cup, and have already placed several bets, one of which I won and another that I'm winning as we speak...er, as I type. Let's take a look, shall we:
Pick to Win the Cup (Front Runner): Brazil. Why Brazil, you ask? Two reasons. Number one, they are Brazil, which is easily one of the best teams in the world. Number two, Little Acorn Man. When you don't know something, go seek out someone who does. In this case, I went to a European blogger. Acorn suggested that Brazil was a solid choice to win the whole shebang. The odds are paying out $25 for a $10 wager, so sure enough, I bet $10. After all, I'm not doing it for the money. I'm doing it to just have a little bit of action.
Pick to Win the Cup (Dark Horse): Netherlands. Again, this was influenced heavily by Little Acorn Man. It didn't hurt that Netherlands is also a great place. What do I know about the Netherlands team? Um, not much. I know they are a decent team, but a relative long shot. I also know that if they win, I get $130 for my $10 wager. Good enough!
Individual Game: Mexico over Iran. Since I'm too impatient to wait for the whole Cup to finish, I put some money on an individual game, Mexico v. Iran. After perusing the lines at WSEX.com, I chose the Mexico game for several reasons. First and foremost, fuck Iran. I'm more than happy to choose my game based on personal biases. I've seen Mexico play before, albeit years ago in a half-drunk state on a small TV in a flea market in Cancun. But I've seen them, and I knew one thing, they could play. They might not be Brazil, but they had a decent team. Iran, on the other hand, has an oppressive regime that hates America and Israel. So, they can't possibly win, because god is Jewish. Okay, I kid ya there, but I just couldn't see them winning. In the end, I placed $16 to win $26 ($10 profit) and won. Viva Mexico!
Individual Game: Italy v. Ghana. After winning the Mexico bet, I rolled my money over to the Italy game. It has become my new goal, finding games where I can place a stright win bet on a favorite by paying odds. In this case, I laid down $30 on Italy, win a chance to win $50 ($20 profit). As of now, Italy is up 2-0, and they are in the last 15 minutes of the match. Looks like I'm going to win.
So, what's next? My plan is to keep betting on favorites, especially when they are huge favorites and the odds are decent. I've perused the schedule, and have decided that I will play one to two games per day. Here is my schedule and picks.
- June 13- Brazil over Croatia (bet $26 to win $10); AND/OR France over Switzerland ($14 to win $10). Clearly, France pays out better, but can Croatia beat Brazil? Very unlikely. So that will probably be my pick.
- June 14- Germany over Poland (odds not available beyond June 13th); AND/OR Spain over the Ukraine. I saw Poland against Ecuador and was unimpressed. Plus, if the screendoors on their submarines or solar-powered flashlights are any indication, Poland is not exactly going to play a very smart game. I don't know much about Spain or the Ukraine, so I'll have to keep my eyes open as the game approaches.
- June 15- England over Trinidad & Tobago; AND/OR Ecuador over Costa Rica. I saw Ecuador play, and I'd support them. But I think England is easy money against T&T. Hell, even with both those countries, I don't think they stand a chance against the British squad. I'll probably stick with England, and I expect odds similar to Brazil over Croatia.
- June 16-Netherlands over Cote d'Ivoir; AND/OR Argentina over Serbia & Montenagro. Argentina is a great team, so that will definitely be a weighted game. But I'm very curious about the Netherlands game, mostly because I have no fucking clue what Cote d'Ivoir is. How could they possibly win if I never even heard of them? Now that, my friends, is indefeatible logic.
Enjoy your footie!