Thursday, November 15, 2007

Mook Hands and when not to do Training

Of course it was Wednesday last night so of course that it means it was time for the MOOK . Man, were things going great or above average last night as I was getting the hands early. It felt a little Astin-ish. Unfortunately, not many of them got paid off and some of them completely missed the flop and I had to fold to pressure.

Speaking of Astin, I have 3 hands I want to review with my 1 or 2 readers in which 2 of them include Astin . A little history between the two of us as he laid down a pretty big hand last week while he was ahead. Congrats, by the way, go to Astin with a 2nd place finish.... again.

Hand #1

Seat 1: UnTiltable15 (2,125)
Seat 2: AgSweep (3,000)
Seat 3: Astin (2,880)
Seat 4: GScottW (4,000)
Seat 5: jamyhawk (2,150)
Seat 6: willwonka (3,655)
Seat 7: chipperdh (3,875)
Seat 8: VinNay (1,915)
Seat 9: Julkeus (6,280)

I have been raising a bunch as I mentioned earlier. I am UTG+2 in this hand with QTs (spades) and raise it to 180 (blinds are 30/60). Not a normal raising hand this early; but mixing it up and I have been raising a lot so perhaps people might read a little more strength with another raise based on gap concepts. Everybody folds to Astin who is in the BB.
Flop comes 9h8hJd. Bang!! Hit the flop.. Now how do I get chips?
Astin actually leads out 240 and I raise to 520 (intentionally small) as we all know that flopped straights are no good. Astin Calls.
Turn is harmless 2 spades and again Astin bets out.. this time 600.
What is your play? around 1970 in pot? My plays will be at then end of post.

Hand #2

This wasn't as exciting so I will breifly mention this one.

This hand is against AgSweep who is a player that I didn't recognize and hadn't played against.

I have 5445 in chips vs his 2540. I look down to another great hand QQ. Blinds are 50/100 and Ag raises from UTG+1 to 300 and I raise to 800 and now he re-pops to 800. It is 500 to call? What do you do?

Results below

Hand #3

Another hand with Mr Astin. Blinds are 60/120 and I have him outchipped 3205 to 1890. I am in the SB with J6d. Julkeus calls from UTG+1 and Astin from button and I call and BB checks. The flop comes:
Jc2h9s giving me top pair, crappy kicker. I check (with the intention of check/raising as I love to do). EP players also checks and Asting throws out 360 and I raise to 860 and he wastes no time in pushing all in which would cost me 910 more.
Is he just tired of me always seemingly check raising him? I definitely think he can push on a bluff or semi bluff.

Results below.

Hand 4

My last hand against my good buddy from Soonner land. I am now down to 895 and blinds are 80/160 so I'm just looking for a hand to push. I look down at AJs and I am primed to push away; but before I do that GCox raises to 560.
Knowing his play, do you wait until the next hand knowing that he has a good hand?

Results Below


As I have mentioned, I have subcribed to some video training one of which being StoxPoker.
So far I am really enjoying it. They have a video category called "The ClassRoom" which talks of theoretical things as opposed to specific hand type stuff. Here are a few of the subjects:

-Stox talks about opening hand ranges when not in steal position.
-Bryce talks about Limit Holdem blind play
-Journey up in stakes
-Stox talks about the use of Poker Ace HUD and Poker Tracker
-Making poker decisions
-Stox reviewing biggest hands
-Bryce showing some PokerStove tricks
-Colin showing SNG Wizard

and more....

Great stuff so far. I have also subscribed to another service which I will talk about more later.

The problem for me is when to watch them. A couple of the videos I decided to watch after I was finished playing whether it be from a good or bad session. My problem is that it is usually late when I start these and it is hard to stay focused especially after a bad session as your mind drifts back towards your session.

So, having said that, I will not make a point to either watch them before I start playing or instead of playing? Thoughts?


Results from above:

Hand #1 . I pushed for 2955 more and he folded; but he clearly didn't want to. We had a little conversation afterwards where I was saying that I was ahead; but didn't necessarily want a call. He wasn't so sure which confirms that he had a good hand.

Hand #2. I just called. Flop was 25Kr. Turn was 2cFlop and Turn both went check, check. River was Tc putting a backdoor flush out there. I checked and he put a nice value bet of 500 in and I called. He showed KK for a flopped set and turned boat. I think I did ok here to get out of this hand with a minimum loss

Hand #3. I had to call and he showed a better kicker. The board paired on the turn giving him thoughts of a split as his kicker was only a Ten. Turns out that card killed me as the river was a 6 and I lost with 3 pair.

Hand #4. I had to push and Gary showed QQ and I didn't improve and IGHN. I finished way down the pack a little worse than halfway. Oh well. There is always next week.

Have a nice day!!!


Wednesday, November 07, 2007

I'm still Rollin... plus some Poker Training

I'm still Rollin.... Downhill that is. I guess the only positive is that I broke my 31 game winless streak. Yep, you read that right, at the $10 SNG level, I went 31 games without a win. LAME!!!! Something needs to give.

I went 2 for 5 last night:

#1. 6th AK lost to 55 which crippled me and then K7 ran into AA
#2. 1st 53 beat KQ; but it was already over by then as he just had 1K chips. I was pushing ATC.
#3 5th KK lost to AK .. then lost race to go home
#4 9th KK lost to TT 3rd hand of tourney.. Allin preflop
#5 2nd AJ lost to AT

So I continue to more or less put my money in with the best of it.

Also played the Mook last night. Another good crowd of over 100 runners. I made it about half way through it before my AA got busted by JJ. To be honest, I did not get my chips in ahead because a Jack came on flop and that is when the money got it in. DNasty was the villain here; but at least he took the chips and took the thing down. Congrats!!!

Anyway, 41 Tourneys so far.

ITM: Amazing 26.8%
ROI: -38.1%

I refuse to believe that I suck that bad in SNGs. For crying out loud, I was beating the $55 dollar SNGs on Party and I can't beat the $10 SNGs on FTP? That darn bankroll management thing. Hopefully, things will change and I will start moving up again because the above hands don't begin to tell the story of things that I see during the game.

So what do I do? I have said many times that I was interested in some video training and I had narrowed it down to a few sites. Again, what I was looking for was SNG info, MTT info and possibly even some ring play on the limit side as I still love to play limit poker.

So here will my review of a poker training site that I went with.

Along with Training, I've been looking into getting one of the well known SNG programs and SNG Wiz was always the one that I was planning on getting. Also, as a member of ThisIsTheNuts as my rakebake provider, they always had a promotion to get 1 month free of StoxPoker which I took advantage of a few times; but I don't play nearly enough anymore to generate the needed $500 in MGR as I don't play as much ring play.

Anyway, Stoxpoker is running a few great promotions right now of which one that caught my eye. One of which is to sign up for a year of Stoxpoker and you get 6 points. You can use those points to get:

Software (3 pts each):
Poker Tracker
Poker Ace HUD
SitNGo Wizard
Idle Miner

Books: (1 pt each):
Winning in Tough Holdem Games
Making of Poker Player (Matt Matros) which I have read and really enjoyed
Sit'nGo Strategy
Getting Started in Holdem
Small Stakes Holdem
Professional No Limit Holdem
No Limit Holdem: Theory and Practice
Winning Low Limit Poker
Super System 2
Holdem Poker
Any of the Harrington on Holdem books
Tournament Poker
Psychology of Poker
Theory of Poker
Mathematics of Poker
Sklansky on Poker

In other words, any of the really good books are available at 1 pt each. They also have a similar deal for 6 month subscriptions. I think you get 3 pts then. They do have other promotions so click on the link on the right and take a look at them.

Since I was already a member, I would only get 5 pts for a yearly subscription which I did and I order SNG Wiz and Winning Tough Holdem Games and SitNGo Strategy . I received the books in less that a week and will start reading them shortly. Hopefully, these will books that I can actually finish as I am terrible about doing that.

I have started using SNG Wizard and the good news is that I am not making too many mistakes especially around bubble time. It did say that I made a mistake on one hand. You can see the hand below:

Click here to view a larger version.

You may need to click on picture to see hand.

Any thoughts on this? Would anybody else be pushing here? Results aside of course, I still think when a big chip leader min raises, he just wants the blinds and I felt that I had enough chips to make him fold a pure steal attempt. As it turns out, I didn't; but I got lucky anyway. It's a shame that I have to get lucky as I did get my chips in with the best of it again.

So again, click on the ad on the right and check out. Here is a look at the video selection that they have:

Stoxpoker Coaching Videos
NL Holdem (6 max): 50 videos
NL Holdem (Heads Up): 9 videos
NL Holdem (Full Ring): 9 videos
Limit Holdem (6 max): 39 videos
Limit Holdem (Heads Up): 18 videos
Limit Holdem (Full Ring): 5 videos
The Classroom: 13 videos
Omaha HL: 2 videos
Omaha PL: 4 videos
7 Stud HL: 1 video
MultiTable_Tourneys: 12 videos
SitNGo: 10 videos
Razz: 2 videos

They are adding videos on Monday, Wednesday and Fridays.

Here are some of the contributors:

Contributing Bloggers:
Collin Moshman
House Calls
Ed Miller

So far so good with these guys. I need to take more time and actually watch them. I think I will devote weekends to them.

I will a review of another poker training site this week. I'm sure you will be able to guess as there was kind of clue within this post.

Have a good day!!


Monday, November 05, 2007

Quick Shout Outs

No poker last night as I watched Dexter with Mrs Wonka and then was really too tired to play.

Something I'm going to try to start doing at least every other month is throw out what I view as my favorite or Top 10 Poker Blogs that I read. As with every blogger, I'm sure they like to know if they are being read and even more that people are enjoying what they write. This list more than likely will not be the same as my next list as things can change over a month or two. So in case the two or three people that read this blog are looking for some more blogs to read, here you go although most of these will already be ones that you are reading. As I have mentioned before, I like reading blogs about poker.

Plus as an added bonus, I will add the blogs that I have recently added to my Bloglines.

My Top Ten Blogs:

#1 Quest of Closet Poker Player . Craig continues to crank out the good stuff including some video blogs which I have not had a chance to watch. I think it helps that we share similarities about sharing poker with family and work and trying to make it all work.

#2 Hoyazo . It was really close as to who would be #1 on my list. I don't think there is anybody in Poker Blogdom land that cranks out more Poker Contentl. Not only is it good, relevent poker content; but it almost everyday. I don't know how he does it. From his great poker strategy posts to his weekly blogger tourney to his well known rants, Hoy is the place to be.

#3 O-Poker - It is no secret, I am a O Poker wannabe. He just continues to impress me with his poker play but he still blogs without that arrogance that some of they good poker players do. He is always questioning his play and looking to improve. Personally, he has helped me look at my game and also aided in helping look for help through training sites (more on that later this week).

#4 Online Poker Blog - Plan3T Gong. This is another guy that cranks out the poker content with an emphasis on SitNGo's which of course gathers my attention. He has another site called sitandgoplanet which is just chalked with stuff about that game called poker. Very good stuff.

#5 Cause Everybody Else is doing it. Ther is not much else that I can say about Mook that isn't already know. He throws the best little Blogger Tourney out there as witness by the almost 120 poeple last week. Of course the smaller $10 buyin helps a little; but the fact that he live blogs it and the work that he puts into it is great. Come join us on Wednesday nights at 9PM Central. Good times are guaranteed.

#6 Vegas Poker Scene . I think the fact that Miami Don lives in Vegas and plays both live and online poker and loves to talk about Sports Betting is what reels me in whenever that I see he has a post. Just the kind of person that a lot of us think that we would like to be doing.

#7 Recess Rampage . Alan is relatively new; but that doesn't stop him from posting some really good stuff especially around Cash Games. I love the hand analysis posts.

#8 How to Fold KK. Another newer blogger. I think the fact that he is a St Louis area blogger keeps me interested. I love the proud father posts about his son's football. I'm hoping that things will work out and the coach will get his head out of his butt for future years.

#9 Poker in Arrears. 3Jacks was one of the very first people that I started reading and getting to know along with High On Poker and Low Limit Grinder. He also posts regularly and has some good stuff. Not to mention that he is not a bad poker player. He really comes to play in the Big Game. I've said it before and it is worth repeating, if weren't for these 3 guys, I probably still wouldn't be blogging.

#10 Rizen Poker. He is just a midwest Poker Pro that I enjoy following his career.

There are many more as I have subscribed to 141 poker blogs. You can click on the link to the right to see all of them. Again, this list may be the same or it could be completely different the next time I do this. So, if you don't already, go check out these blogs and leave comments to let them know.

Here are a couple of blogs that I recently added to my bloglines.

#1 Hard Boiled Poker . Not only does this guy post about poker; but he has the most compreshensive list of poker podcasts that you would ever want. This is actually how I found them as I was looking for podcosts to listen to on my way to work. I will probably list a few of these in a future post.

#2 The Poker Grind . This guy has been on a tear lately and has won his way to the Bahamas. I believe he did it via the Poker Stars steps that just he just started with some frequent player points. Now, that is the way to do it. I wish him all the best.

Have a good day!!!


Super Tilt

Super Tilt. That is what sharkscope says when you go 8 straight SNGs without cashing. I had the unfortunate pleasure of experiencing that this weekend plus more. I know some people are dead against posted negative results on their blog along with Bad Beat Stories. I say why? If you are willing to post good results, I say go ahead and post bad results. After all, this is my poker journey and I want to be fair in my writing. But before I talk about this, let's talk some football.

But even before that, I wrote a little bit about pot sized flop bets. If you didn't get a chance to take a look, click on the link and let me know your thoughts.

Speaking of prior posts, a few days ago, I posted about the Game of the Year. I gave what I thought was some good evidence that you should be picking Indy (plus the number which was 6 in this case) and the under. Now, if I would have listened to my own advice and hit the sportsbook windows and laid a nice parlay on it, that would have been nice. But no, I stayed away from it. I have said it before, and I will say it again for anybody that will listen. Tom Brady is the best QB EVER!!! This is taking nothing away from Manning as he is also extra special and would take him on my team anyday. This is what the rest of their schedule looks like:

Week 10: Bye
Week 11: at Buffalo
Week 12: Philadelphia
Week 13: at Baltimore
Week 14: Pittsburgh
Week 15: NY Jets
Week 16: Miami
Week 17: at NY Giants

Do you really see anybody that can beat them? It is the NFL and there is the any given Sunday thing; but yikes, the old Miami guys must be really sweating it this year.

I would also be remiss if I didn't plug my Cowboys. Never a doubt in the game last night. They even scored in the 1st quarter for a change. I really hope to see a rematch between Dallas and NE in the Super Bowl.

Back to Tilt. This is not going to be post about dealing with Tilt. That has been covered plenty of times by people much better than me. To me, everybody needs to deal with it in their own way. Anyway, I am starting off the month again in glorious fashion. Currently, I am a 24 SNG streak without a win and had a nice 0 for 13 streak in there. Here are some details:

#1: 4th AA vs TT All in Preflop... 4Q46...T
#2: 6th AJ vs QJ JKKQ5
#3: 5th 99 vs 88.. 6975K
#4: 7th KQ vs A6.. A6 limped in for 100 and I pushed for 1025. Who calls with A6?
#5: 4th KJ vs AJ.. ok I'm behind but flop was JK2... oh but wait.. TQ runner, runnered
#6: 6th 99 vs AJ no biggie lost race
#7: 7th AK vs QQ vs JT I came in third on this one and lost main and side pot
#8: 8th KK vs QT allin on flop... 5T8Q and a T on flop just to rub it in
#9: 5th 88 vs A7 4 flushed on river... I was chip leader hand b4 this but lost AKs to TT with K on flop. Of course there was also a T
#10: 7th A6 vs K7 5KK65
#11: 8th KQs vs 88 another lost race
#12: 5th 65s vs KJ Hit straight on turn but 4 flushed on river
#13: KQ vs J9 hit 2 pair but lost to straight
There you have it and there you are. You think I should give up on SNGs? Nah, not my nature to give up after being kicked in the junk. Here is the chart:

We'll see how it goes.
Have a nice day!!!

Friday, November 02, 2007

Pot Sized Continuation Bet

Pot Sized Continuation Bet. What does it mean? This has continued to be on my mind since my last post which included a hand from the Mook against Astin . The basic gist was that there was an UTG 3x raise with a flop of Axx which included both potential flush and straight draws. UTG led out with a pot sized bet. The question of the day is what do you make of this bet?

But before, we go onto that, I'll breifly mention my 1st day of SNGs for the month of November. Again, I played my typical set of 6 SNGs. Unfortunately, I have started off on the negative side of things as I went 2 for 6 and again I am starting off badly regarding bubbles. I had 1 1st and 1 3rd and 2 4ths and 2 others. One of the bubbles I went out with AA vs KJ. KJ was better on this occasion. 2nd bubble, I was behind; but hoping for a push with my A7 going against A8.. Ace on flop along with 2 over cards.. 8 on turn sealed the deal. So I am a whopping 3 dollars down on the month. I will stay with the $10+1 SNGs this month until I see positive results.

Plus, Full Tilt is having some kind of SNG Madness thing this weekend. I won't be around too much over the weekend; but it will be interesting to see how this turns out. Some of the things they will be doing is taking part of the prize pool and dividing that up in to bountys. I'm not sure I like that as I am not usually they guy knocking people out early. We'll take a look and see as I'm sure this will bring many more people to the SNG tables.

Back to the Continuation bet thing. I discussed this topic a bit on 2+2 and had some interesting comments; but I placed in the Single Table Tourney forum as I wanted just a general discussion on this.

Back to the hand. This will be, by the way, hopefully both theoretical while still using this hand as an example. In this hand, Astin puts out the pot sized bet on the flop on a semi dry board. What does this mean? Here is some of the things that I think it could be (particularly with a EP
raiser with a pot sized flop bet while still being in position):

-He has a big Ace and is protecting against straight and flush draws
-He has a mid to little Ace and is protecting
-He has a big pair and didn't like the Ace but is putting a big enough bet to deter a call.
-He has nothing but maybe broadway cards.

I can't speak for Astin other than to say he is (to me) an aggressive; yet solid player. He has been known to raise a bunch. So, now we are making this case a little more specific saying that we are playing against an aggressive player.

Perhaps, plenty of people throw out pot sized bets as continuation bets as a standard operating procedures; but I don't agree with that.. especially if you are strong. Now, I do believe in protecting your hands on non dry boards; but my C-bets are typically around 1/2 pot to 3/4 pot. That doesn't mean that is the correct to play them. I tried to do a quick poll of my Hand Histories to see how often I did pot sized C-Bets but couldn't find an easy way to do this Poker Tracker; but I'll bet that I only do it when I have a monster hand or a hand that needs protecting such AQ or AK or JackAce.

Of course alot of these type things are read dependent; but recently, my first thoughts when I see a pot sized bet on the flop is weakness. Again, especially with a dry board. So, the question comes down to how to act when you see this. For me, it goes back to my hand, my stack, and my position.

My hand. In order to call or raise, I need to have something. I hardly EVER push with air. If I do raise or call, I want to have some outs or some implied outs based on betting patterns. In other words, what if that straight card or flush cards come. I can easily take control of the hand and lead out.

My Stack. What is my stack compared to the preflop raiser. This is a huge deal for me in a tournament. You don't have to be a brain surgeon to know that more chip equals more power. If you put pressure on somebody that will cost them all of their chips, it makes it much more difficult to call.

My position. We all know that position is the all important ingrediant in poker; but in these type situations, it is not as big of a deal for me and alot of times, I would rather be the first one to act. If I'm in steal mode, I want to be the person who first gets to put on the pressure. I don't want to give the original raiser the chance to put pressure on me or even draw a free card that might help him. Of course, I wouldn't mind too much a free card since I was drawing; but in these type cases, I don't necessarily want a showdown to disguise what I am doing.

We all know about the different levels of thinking in poker and it is important to tell your story with some cosistency; but sometimes just shoving on the turn when you perceive somebody does not have a made hand can be worth it. I need him to believe that by calling preflop and calling a pot sized bet that I have something... but at the same time put in his mind that I may be bluffing. So, what do you typically put a person on when they call two bullets and the turn card is a card that most likely doesn't help anybody? I think it shows monster strength or bluffing with a draw as I did this time.

Truthfully, the most reaction was that I played the hand terribly and that I was being results oriented in my thinking. I don't think so; but that is OK.

Some final thoughts. I'm not sure why you put in pot sized C-bets on the flop unless you want to scare some people away. If you have a strong hand or if you want to see where you are at a smaller bet can achieve the same thing. Again, unless it is a very coordinated board, there is no need. Now, I'm not sure what Astin had other than I know that I was behind as he comment on the previous post. He also mentioned that he thought that I could be a big draw; but it wasn't worth all of his chips to find out.

Boy, there is so much that you could talk about when it comes to these type bets on the flop; but I have run out of time.

Have a good weekend!!!


Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Battle of Bloggers

I have been very bad in not mentioning the latest installment of the Battle of the Bloggers II.


Thanks to the usual suspects, AL , Hoy , MooK , the Riverchasers gang and Miami Don .

Tonight was the Mook and there was an incredible 114 runners on this Halloween night. A really nice Halloween night here in St Louis, weather wise. I got house duty this year (I think because the weather was nice) while Mrs Wonka took the Little Mermaid and Mouse around the neighborhood although the little Mouse (1 yr old) didn't last very long.

I fought long and hard; but in the end I barely got my money back as I finished 14th. There were three big hands that could have changed the outcome of the game.

The first one came with Astin.

I'm thinking he laid down the best hand; but as he said, it looked a little fishy.

Full Tilt Poker
No Limit Holdem Ring game
Blinds: $100/$200
8 players

Pre-flop: (8 players) Hero is BB with :9s :ts
UTG raises to $600, 6 folds, Hero calls.

Flop: :ac :8s :7c ($1300, 2 players)
Hero checks, UTG bets $1300, Hero calls.

Turn: :2s ($3900, 2 players)
Hero is all-in $3190, UTG folds.
Uncalled bets: $3190 returned to Hero.

Final pot: $3900

That gave me a few chips to keep up with the Jones; but I could have been severely crippled..

A little later this hand came up that would have been gi-normous... Obviously, I can't really call this; but I sure should have and almost did pushed over the top to begin with.

Full Tilt Poker
No Limit Holdem Tournament
Blinds: t500/t1000
(Ante: t125)
7 players

Stack sizes:
UTG: t17636
UTG+1: t32103
MP1: t5199
Hero: t17233
Button: t6148
SB: t13788
BB: t8255

Pre-flop: (7 players) Hero is CO with :th :td
UTG folds, UTG+1 raises to t3000, MP1 folds, Hero calls t3000 (pot was t5375), Button folds, SB raises all-in t13663, BB folds, UTG+1 raises all-in t31978, Hero folds.
Uncalled bets: t18315 returned to UTG+1.

UTG (dmanns) had KK
and SB (irongilrl) had AA

Flop: :kc :9h :js (t8875, 0 player + 2 all-in - Main pot: t32201)

Turn: :ac (t8875, 0 player + 2 all-in - Main pot: t32201)

River: :qh (t8875, 0 player + 2 all-in - Main pot: t32201)

Final pot: t8875

DOH!!!! I would have rivered a Straight.

And my final hand was against Schaubs where he went all in with AK and I lost the race with QQ and that is that. As usual, coulda, woulda shoulda.


No SNGs tonight so the month will will end with a nice net of 0$.


I've been wanting to talk about this Absolute Poker thing; but have never really gotten around to it. By now, I'm sure that everybody has read all about it at sites such and others. While I think it is deplorable at what they did, I have made the decision to keep my money on Absolute at the moment which I'm sure that many people will disagree with. For one reason, all the poker players (good poker players) in the know have probably already left so that has left all the not so good players there. At the stakes that I play 2/4 and 3/6 limit, I really don't have to worry about high stakes cheaters looking at my hole cards. I didn't play whole lot at AP but I did play a little over 1,000 hands with a 5.62 BB/100 hands win rate. So tell me, should I leave... I think not.

What about AP as a going concern. Let's take a look at the numbers per

Site History

Date/Time (PT) Peak Players
Aug 31 @ 9:50 PM 2129
Sep 1 @ 6:54 PM 1797
Sep 2 @ 8:00 PM 1924
Sep 3 @ 7:16 PM 2202
Sep 4 @ 7:44 PM 2158
Sep 5 @ 7:09 PM 2174
Sep 6 @ 7:58 PM 2032
Sep 7 @ 7:34 PM 2028
Sep 8 @ 8:10 PM 1852
Sep 9 @ 7:49 PM 2052
Sep 10 @ 7:49 PM 2226
Sep 11 @ 7:53 PM 2507
Sep 12 @ 7:27 PM 2629
Sep 13 @ 6:58 PM 2678
Sep 14 @ 8:09 PM 2296
Sep 15 @ 8:40 PM 2059
Sep 16 @ 7:49 PM 2257
Sep 17 @ 8:32 PM 2430
Sep 18 @ 9:00 PM 2269
Sep 19 @ 7:00 PM 2523
Sep 20 @ 7:13 PM 2462
Sep 21 @ 8:13 PM 2227
Sep 22 @ 7:08 PM 1902
Sep 23 @ 6:58 PM 2096
Sep 24 @ 7:53 PM 2311
Sep 25 @ 8:05 PM 2453
Sep 26 @ 7:41 PM 2422
Sep 27 @ 7:45 PM 2420
Sep 28 @ 7:05 PM 2345
Sep 29 @ 6:31 PM 2120
Sep 30 @ 7:40 PM 2414
Oct 1 @ 7:27 PM 2341
Oct 2 @ 7:32 PM 2504
Oct 3 @ 8:06 PM 2301
Oct 4 @ 7:48 PM 2622
Oct 5 @ 7:23 PM 2301
Oct 6 @ 8:31 PM 2200
Oct 7 @ 7:31 PM 2447
Oct 8 @ 7:54 PM 2417
Oct 9 @ 7:45 PM 2619
Oct 10 @ 7:51 PM 2795
Oct 11 @ 7:50 PM 2613
Oct 12 @ 7:14 PM 2479
Oct 13 @ 8:09 PM 2163
Oct 14 @ 7:39 PM 2352
Oct 15 @ 8:02 PM 2611
Oct 16 @ 6:49 PM 2593
Oct 17 @ 7:56 PM 2411
Oct 18 @ 7:49 PM 2461
Oct 19 @ 7:20 PM 2310
Oct 20 @ 8:20 PM 1928
Oct 21 @ 7:50 PM 2190
Oct 22 @ 7:43 PM 2490
Oct 23 @ 7:57 PM 2450
Oct 24 @ 6:50 PM 2394
Oct 25 @ 6:53 PM 2345
Oct 26 @ 8:00 PM 2355
Oct 27 @ 8:00 PM 2120
Oct 28 @ 6:40 PM 2361
Oct 29 @ 7:39 PM 2500
Oct 30 @ 7:44 PM 2556

So as you can see the numbers haven't really suffered which is a little surprising. So for now, I will keep my little money that I have on Absolute and will monitor how things go there. The whole thing is just a huge mess.

So, they should do it for today..


Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Game of the Year

This week is the week we have all been waiting for in the NFL. The matchup of the year. Of course, I'm talking about the Cowboys / Eagles game with Tony's new contract. OK, while that game is huge to me; I must admit that the NE / Indy game is far more intriguing. Let's take a look at this game in detail to try and figure out who covers the spread.... But, as usual, more on this later.

Let's start with my fantastic night of SNGs. Again, just one set of 6. That would be 0 for 6 with 3 bubbles and 1 5th and 2 others including a 9th.

Bubble 1... 98s see a flop of T73. I push with my open ender against big chip leader in Blind vs Blind. He calls with a 7 and I miss my 14 outs twice.
Bubble 2... Again B vs B and I have J7s.. Flop JT7... again all chips go in with me a 69% fav.. River pairs the T and I am outkicked and kicked out of tourney
Bubble 3... This was OK as I pushed KTo from button and got called by JackAce and I didn't improve

The 5th place was also a little painful.. I open push with AQ on a steal attempt. Unfortunately, I get 2 callers.. One with KK and one with AJ... I get my miracle Ace on the flop and I am looking good. Well, until the Jack comes on the turn. IGHN. Brutal.

Oh what the heck. Let's look at the rest.

8th place: I'm in SB with AT... folded to button who min raises... Boy do I hate min raisers and I go ahead and push.. he calls with KQ. T on the flop. Any guesses as to what came on the river. Q.

9th place.. nothing exciting here. I pushed with TT and get called by JT.. J on flop..

This puts me at exactly 0$ for the month. Nice!! At least there is little bit of rakeback to go with that.


Now, New England vs Indianapolis

Is there anybody sane enough to bet against the Patriots. The public money seems to be all over the Patriots on them. The opening line was had NE as a 5.5 favorite. That line has now moved to 6 on some sites and even as high as 6 1/2 at others. is one of the sites that has the line at 6 1/2. So, if you are on Indy, this might be a good place to go. While you are there, you can also play poker and other casino games as it is one of the US friendly sites. They are on the same network as Cake Poker so there may be some rakeback deals out there. I didn't find any at first glance. Feel free to look at the links at the top right of blog for more info.

Back to the game. I'm not so sure NE is the play here.

First, Indy is the defending Super Bowl Champs and they have not lost a game this year either so I'm sure that they have a chip on their shoulder for all the publicity that NE is getting.
Second, they are at home and that has to mean something. Even in Indy which to me is one of the more docile enviornments that I have seen; at least when I went to a Cowboys game there.

Here are a couple of fun facts:

Indy has covered the spread every time at home (4-0).
The underdog in this matchup is 9-3-1 in the last 13 matchups.
The Colts have gone over the number 2 out of 3 times at home and the only time NE didn't go over the number was on the road.

Marvin Harrison is due back for this game while Sammy Morris and Ben Watson are still out.

Now, this IS a revenge game for NE as they lost the AFC Championship to Peyton and the boys; but I believe they have moved passed that.

What we may be overlooking in this game with 2 very powerful offenses is the defenses of both these teams. Indy is actully #1 in the AFC against the pass and 3rd overall in combined defense.

I have said it before and I will say it again. Tom Brady is the Best Quarterback I have EVER seen and that includes Peyton Manning. I've seen my share of great QBs (Staubach, Aikman, Montana, Elway, Unitas a little, Favre and the list goes on) and Tom Brady is second to none.

Having said that, I think I am leaning with Indy and the Under on this one. Of course, I reserve the right to change my mind.

I wonder what Miami Don has to say about this game or is still jacked up on his deep run in the 750K. Congrats, by the way, on that.

Have a nice day!!!!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Changes and Home Game with new Table

I finally hope to start making some changes to this here blog. It is a little bland and hope to maybe change the template and/or add some ads in here or something. Change is not something I'm not really used to; but in this case it is much needed.

I missed the MATH as we running a little late with the kids tonight; plus I thought Mrs Wonka wanted to watch some TV. She ended up falling asleep when putting Toddler Wonka to sleep. I had a brief window to make it up here to make the tourney; but I didn't feel in the right frame of mind; plus I had some fantasy implications on the football game so I decided to watch so more of it. In our league, we actually do payouts after Week 8 (1st half) so this was a big week. We have 2 different payouts. 1 payout for our normal schedule which we play 2 games a week (so that we will have played everybody 3 times by the end of the year) and 1 payout that Sportsline calls Breakdown which is as if you played everybody every week. Not knowing for sure, I think I'm going to end up 4th in standings and 3rd in breakdown (out of 12 teams) which are both good for payouts. Something is better than nothing.

So after a while, I got frustrated watching Cutler trying to do something, I came up here to play a set of SNGs.

I went 3 for 6 with 2 1sts and 1 3rd and 1 4th and 2 others.

I was both lucky and unlucky as I was a big chip leader in one SNG with 4 left and got my AA cracked by Quad 7s. By the way, I also hit my set which more or less made it impossible to fold just given the odds. I actually thought he hit a flush on river. Same difference I guess. I went out a little later when my QQ lost to A3 to finish on the bubble. I also got lucky in 2 other where my lower pair hit their set to crack a higher pair. That's poker, they say.

So, altogether, I have now played 165 SNGs with 37% ITM and a 3.6% ROI. I am still enjoying SNGs and look forward to improving my game. More on that later in the week.


I decided to throw a home together last Friday in celebration of my new poker table that I just got. This was a combo late wedding present (7 years late) and early Christmas present from both my mom and my wife's parents. Take a look:

In the actual game, we had 12 people and played 2 tables until we got down to 9. Some of the monthly crew were there (Pantyman, Bud, Ace, Iceman and Fluff w/ Mrs Fluff), there were a couple neighbors and a couple of co-workers (both current and old). I was hurt really bad when my AT lost to A8 which more or less brought me down to a little over the BB. Luckily, I picked up AA 2 hands later and tripled up. I ended up 2nd with one of my neighbors taking it down when his Jackson Five (J5o) out did my A6s. A little controversy brewed with the old One Person to a Hand rule; but that is the way it goes sometimes in home games. My co-worker, who I will call Zeus tried to steal some blinds and while the BB was deciding what to do, somebody said that you just can't call that and then he went all in. Zeus had 94s and had to fold. Next hand, he puts in a raise with A6o and gets called by Iceman's K7s. The flop brought 2 of his suit and Zeus went all in and was called by Iceman. Doing the math, Iceman was actually ahead and he dead spike a K to put Zeus out on the bubble. You could see steam coming out of his ears and he was gone in about 2 seconds after he busted. He's over it now; but it was fun giving him the business today.


Really enjoying the 2nd season of Dexter which is on Showtime. It may not be quite as good as the 1st season; but it is starting to get pretty good. Plenty of little twists in this show. I am trying to decide if watching Brotherhood is worth watching even if I didn't catch the 1st season. I ended my Blockbuster Acct before I could watch them.

Speaking of movies, my wife and I recently celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary so we went out for Steak and a Movie. It sure is a lot different eating dinner with 2 young kids. Yep, a pleasant experience. Who'd of thunk we would have lasted 7 years. I think the over/under was 3... days. Anyway, not going to get all mushy here. Not my MO. We went and saw a movie called Gone Baby Gone and I really enjoyed it. I gave it a rating of 9 out of 10. Maybe 8.5.

Well, it is getting late. I see the MATH is down to headsup. Two people that I have not heard of so best of luck to one of you.

Have a Nice Day!!!!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

October Winding Down

Where is this year going to... So much has happened since my last post that I could never do justice to it in one post, so I will spread things out over the week.

The theme for the month was Sit'N'Gos. So that is where I will start. At last report I had played 82 of them with a -13% ROI. I am now up to 147. I took about a week off from them to play a few different things. Anyway, I just took a little break to try to clear my head from all the bubbles and normal nonsense.

As usual, things went good and they went bad. I guess the overall good news is that at least I made it back to positive numbers; albeit, barely.

Before I go into the numbers, I will tell you a quick story of one of my SNGs last week. The whole SNG lasted 6 hands which in itself is not unusual... sometimes it just happens; but this one was a little funny. Funny, you say?? Funny haha, or funny peculiar. I will let you decide.

5th hand, I get QQ UTG+1. I do a normal 3x raise and then get raised about 2.5x that by a late position guy. Being that it was early, I could just call; but where is the fun in that. I pushed, he called with AK and won the race. No big deal there. Happens all the time. Obviously, I'm crippled. Anyway, next hand I get AK and of course put in the rest of my chips. The same AK guy from above raises and again we are heads up. He turns over QQ and again wins the race. Now, is that funny haha or funny peculiar. I say.... typical.

So, let's cut to the chase. Here is how things look since my last update.

So the bubbles have definitely decreased. More 2nds than 1sts which is never good; but I'm heading in the right direction.

Again, I have played 147 SNGs with the following results:

ITM% = 37.4%
ROI% = 1.3%

Here is the graph of finishes.

Here is a different kind of look... by Tourney Range. Here are the numbers for tourneys in group of 25 compliments of TourneyManager.

1-25 20%ITM and -34.5% ROI
26-50 36% ITM and -5.1% ROI
51-75 40% ITM and -1.8% ROI
76-100 56% ITM and 30.9% ROI
101-125 40% ITM and 37.5% ROI
126-147 31.8% ITM and -21.9% ROI

Hopefully things can turn back around.

I will just keep it up for the rest of the month; but probably won't hit the 200 that I had planned on playing.


I did play in a Tier II Token frenzy of the weekend and now have a token for the next Big Game.

I also played in a freeroll today for (One of my rakeback sites). $2,500 was what the winner got. I was top 10 fairly late into this thing; but a couple of position raises with A5 and KTs were re-raised by one of the blinds and I folded both. Finally went out in 31st when my flopped 2 pair was ousted by a 4flush... really a 5flush; but he had the ace. That was definately a coulda, woulda, shoulda.


New England Patriots. What can you say about these guys other than it doesn't matter who they play or where. It would hard to bet against these guys as they have covered the spread every week. I am very curious where the line will come out on Tuesday for the NE / Indy game in Indy. Talk about no respect, I would bet that NE will be a pretty good sized favorite against the reigning Super Bowl champions. Would you bet against them?


That will do it for now; but hopefully, more regular posting is on the way.

Have a nice day!!!!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Another Day Another Lost Dollar

Boy, I love Sit-N-Gos...

Here is my very first hand of the night of my first set of 6.

FullTiltPoker Game #3808651608: $10 + $1 Sit & Go (29009732), Table 1 - 15/30 - No Limit Hold'em - 23:14:56 ET - 2007/10/09
The button is in seat #9
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to willwonka [Kc Ks]
maxwell3000 folds
vivette folds
ganja smkn raises to 60
jdntal raises to 420
Steps25 folds
willwonka has 15 seconds left to act
willwonka raises to 1,500, and is all in
trojanmana folds
pokaaparty folds
ganja smkn folds
jdntal calls 1,080, and is all in
willwonka shows [Kc Ks]
jdntal shows [Ah Kh]
*** FLOP *** [Jd Ac 3h]
*** TURN *** [Jd Ac 3h] [5h]
*** RIVER *** [Jd Ac 3h 5h] [9d]
willwonka shows a pair of Kings
jdntal shows a pair of Aces

Here is another hand tha will give you a tone of how things went...

Full Tilt Poker
No Limit Holdem Tournament
Blinds: t25/t50
7 players

Stack sizes:
UTG: t2860
UTG+1: t1250
MP1: t1660
Hero: t1455
Button: t1885
SB: t1480
BB: t2910

Pre-flop: (7 players) Hero is CO with :6d :6c
UTG folds, UTG+1 calls t50 (pot was t75), MP1 calls t50 (pot was t125), Hero calls t50 (pot was t175), Button calls t50 (pot was t225), SB folds, BB checks.

Flop: :9c :9h :4s (t275, 5 players)
BB checks, UTG+1 checks, MP1 bets t50, Hero raises to t200, 2 folds, UTG+1 calls t200 (pot was t525), MP1 folds.

Turn: :6h (t725, 2 players)
UTG+1 checks, Hero checks.

River: :as (t725, 2 players)
UTG+1 bets t400, Hero raises all-in t1205, UTG+1 calls all-in t600.
Uncalled bets: t205 returned to Hero.

Final pot: t2725

UTG+1 had Ad9s.

All told I played 13 SNGs will another great result 38.46% iTM and -18.18% ROI. Of course, I will tell you that this doesn't tell the story of how things went. Or maybe it does and I am just a terrible SNG player. Actually, that is probably closer to the truth.

Not counting the last 10-15 minutes because I quit writing things down because is was going fast and furious. I got my money in with the best of it 6 times... I lost 5. I was 2 for 6 on Coin Tosses and 1 for 11 when getting the money in bad. To say that I was coolered tonight would be an understatment. If I had AQ on an Ace flop somebody had AK. If I had JJ somebody had QQ. Top pair vs a set. You get the picture.

To make things worse, I had no wins... 3 2nds and 2 3rds... I had Bubbles so I had that going for me. There are always positives. You just have to find them.

To make things even worse I played 100 hands of limit and my Won $ at Showdown Percentage.... 18.18% The last hand that just made me quit was I had A9s on the button.. Loose guy directly in front of me raises. I 3 bet. We see a flop... J8A.. Turn 9... River 8... He had J8.

So, just for documentation purposes.

82 SNGs
32.9 IM
-13.2 % ROI

I did much better at the $55s than I am doing at the $10s per this oldie but goodie Post..

UTG+1 showed Ad 9s
Hero showed 6d 6c

Monday, October 08, 2007

New Sheriff in Town

There's a new sheriff in town or should I say in Dallas; but....

First things first.

Online Poker

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

This Online Poker Tournament is a No Limit Texas Holdem event exclusive to Bloggers.

Registration code: 2470086

Next, the new sheriff is Nick Folk. How clutch is that guy. Makes a 53 yarder only to have to do it again. Normally, Tony Romo is the man; but obviously, he had some issues last night. He just didn't seem to be zipping it as much as he usually does. Too many lobs. But let it be known right here and right now. Tony Romo is THE Man for the Cowboy's future. We'll give him a pass yesterday; especially since we won.

OK Next, Let me say that first, I am NOT a TO fan. I was against him coming to the Cowboys and wouldn't miss him if he left; but he seems to be getting some unfair treatment with the referees. Tonight there were 3 pretty bad calls and no calls against him that should or should not have gone his way.

First play, makes a catch and they call spiking the ball. Not only was it not spiking; but the ball ended up just a few feet from the referee. Not much of a delay of game in my book

Second, he caught a ball and they called it out of bounds even though it was clear he was shoved out of bounds and would have gotten both feet down.

Third and critically, on the 2 pt try. The cornerback never looked back for the ball, he only stuck his hands up and face guarded him which is a clear interference. NO call!!!!

Not only did he not get the calls; but the MNF announcers didn't even say anything. Again, I am NOT a TO apologist. I think he is a showboat and a time bomb just waiting to go off. He drops too many passess and so on so on; but tonight, he deserved to be defended. There were many scenes where he was upbeat and trying to get people to play. No telling what he would have been like if they had lost that game. Oh by the way, did I mention the Cowboys won their MNF game.

Enough Said.

No Poker SNGs tonight as it was pretty late after the game and news conferences that I watched. I played a couple hundred limit hands for more or less break even.

Have a nice day!!!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Started Good and Ended Bad

OK... Continuing on the SNG Quest for the month. I played 25 of them this weekend. More on this later..

But first I want to rant about one of the dumbest NFL rules that relate to TV Blackouts. Now, I live in St Louis and I am obviously a Rams Fan (2nd only to the Dallas Cowboys). For the first time in many years, the Rams did not sell out in time and the game was blacked out here locally and they showed the Steeler/Seahawk game instead.

I'm trying to get my head around this black out thing and why they do it. Obviously, I understand that they only have 8 home games and they want/need the people to be at the game; but on the other hand, many people can not afford to pay the money for the tickets, parking, concessions, etc... I don't know of any other sport that does it. I know baseball and hockey do not do it. We should be able to see these games.

Secondly, I subscribe to the NFL Sunday Ticket. In other words, I pay to see all the games and of course they follow the same black out rules. Even worse, I can't always watch a game on the Sunday Ticket Channels if the game is being telecast locally. Again, all for the all might local dollar. I'm just getting sick of it!!!!!!

I'm going to put some thought into this and see how to possibly get a petition going to voice my (and I'm sure many others) displeasure to this idiotic rule. When a team is 0-4 (and now 0-5 and soon to be 0-7), what incentive is there to go and lay down a C note to watch a football game. Does that mean that I don't want to see the game. No, not at all, I'm a loyal fan and will sit through many losing seasons. I know a petition would be of absolutely no good use; but it may make me feel better.

OK, on to poker. We left off after having a terrible start to the month. I played each day this weekend. I set of 6 on Friday and Saturday and 13 on Sunday.

Friday was good was as I was In the Money (ITM) 50% for a 50% ROI (I did have 2 4ths which again really hurts) and Saturday was awesome as I was in the money every time. Yep, 6 for 6 which again got me to within $13 of being break even for the month. So, Saturday was 100% ITM and 145.45% ROI. And then there was Sunday. I should of just stayed and watch the Bears/Packers game as I went 2 for 13 with a dismal -56% ROI.

Saturday was just crazy as I went 9-1 when there was an ALL-IN when I had the best of it, an incredible 5-1 on coin tosses and and even more incredible 5-6 when I was behind. Just one of those days when things worked out although the bad news was that I could only finish one of them out for a win. I also had 3 2nds and 2 3rds.

Here is how the weekend looked.

So for the weekend I was In the Money 44% and my ROI was 17.82. As I mentioned it could of/ should have been much better.

So here is the month to date look.

Which leaves me at 31.9% ITM and -12.3% ROI

We'll see how the rest of the month goes..


The Longhorns did get it done this weekend. They had opportunities; but when ever there was a bounce or any kind of break that comes up during the game, it just didn't go their way. I can't even blame it on the officials other than I'm pretty sure that when the whistle blows and some body plows into your QB from behind, that it is a penalty. Not sure how they missed that one. They sure didn't miss the late hit from a Longhorn player later in the game. Oh well, at least they didn't get embarrassed and they did cover the spread, right GCox. I got your transfer. Thanks.

Have a nice day!!

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Bubble SNG Boy

I'm continuing on my SNG Quest this month and so far so bad. Results have been really bad and frustrating. Take tonight for example. I just played one set of 6. 1 1st, 1 3rd and 2 4ths. Obviously bubbling way too much. To further drive the point see the below chart.

Yep, that big bar in the middle is the bubble bar. 25% of my 44 SNGs so far this month have resulted in 4th place finishes..

That's one thing. The other is how I got my money in tonight.

Tonight I got all my chips in as a favorite 6 times (won 5 of them) and went 50/50 on 2 coin tosses. All that is OK; but compared to the fact that I got my money in with the worst of 7 times is alarming (of which I won 2 of them). Of course, these are exact calculations as I just immediately categorize them as I play. Typically, I like to get my money in with best of at a lot higher percentage. DUH!!!!!

My ITM started out at 14% of the first 14 and after 22 I had an alarming -55.4% ROI. YIKES!!! Things turned around and I almost got back to even with making the money 7 of the next 8 tourneys; but then only to follow that with 10 straight out of the money. So after 44, the terrible stats show that I am only in the money 25% and my sickening ROI is -29.3%.

I'm not one to give that easily so I will continue on.


Back to poker Training. With all the SNG stuff that they have along with Tournamnets, PokerXFactor was the easy choice. I've signed up for a monty and will most undobutedly resign for another 3 soon. So far, I have really enjoyed it. I will wait a week or two to give my full review. Yes, that's right... more on this later.

I've also just downloaded a program called Poker Hound and will give that a gander. It sure can't hurt.

The only thing I plan to buy is SNG Wizard to help with the SNG End Game which I am obviously having trouble with. We will see.


I would be remiss not to mention that this weekend is the Annual Red River Shootout matchup against the UT Longhorns and Sooners of OU. I'm assuming that both myself and some OU Fans aren't too happy with the state of things in football land; but that doesn't matter because you throw everything out the window with this game. Gary's Sooners are an 11 point favororite and he assures me that number is a little low so we have a little side bet going on the game. The point spread winner will have his next Mookie tourney paid. So G, when you make that player transfer the screen name is W-I-L-L-W-O-N-K-A

Hook 'em Horns!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And I would also be remiss in no saying...

TONY ROMO is the MAN!!!! The Cowboys run good. Hopefully they don't look past the Bills on the way to the big showdown with the Patriots in a couple of weeks.

Have a good Day!!!!!!

Monday, October 01, 2007

Here we go again...

Well, Let's try this blogging thing again.... Things obviously haven't gone too well.

The month of September was blah... I played 106 SNGs losing a grand total of $14 at 38.7% ITM at the lowly $10 range. It is obviously frustrating not to be able to do better at that level; but bankroll dictates where you play at.

Ring play was an impressive plus $100. Add a few dollars for rakeback and at least it was a positive month.

So the plan for October.... More SNGs... it's kind of personal thing now... I must beat the $10 SNGS... I'm shooting for around 200 of them.

My first set of 6 tonight.... 1 1st 1 4th and the others not so good... Typical to how things have been going though..

SNG #1 8th place TT loses to KQ... he called my preflop raise... I hit my set on the flop... oh but wait the flop was AJT... and flopped straights are apparently gold. Who knew. The boat didn't fill up so I'm gone.

SNG #2 5th My second high nut flush was ousted by the nut flush... lovely

SNG #3 5th JJ lost to 88 DQB What can you do...

SNG #4 1st Wahoo.

SNG #5 4th This bubble went on for ever seeing the shorties over and over again winning. DonkeyPuncher was there to witness the fun and got 3rd after he was sucked out on. I definitely need help on my bubble play. More on that later.

SNG #6 9th AK lost 34 on Ace high flop. He got his second pair on turn and I called his all in like a big dummy.

Given the lackluster performance again this year, I have definitely made up my decision to try a training site. There are many out there. It seems that are two or three clear leaders (that I know of) and they all seem to have their speciality. Any comments on any of these would be greatly appreciated.

First off, I will probably finally purchase SNGWiz as compared to SNGPT.

Next video Training. I think I have finally convinced myself to do one of these. I have a few bucks on Poker Stars and the plan is to use that site to fund my poker training. Hopefully I can make $25 a month on that site. If not, I really have problems.

PokerXFactor - specializing in Tournaments; mostly MTT; but plenty of SNG talk. They have a great Hand Analyzer and the video selection is great.

Cardrunners - Newly re-redesigned website looks great. Seems to specialize in Cash Games. O-Poker obviously likes it.

StoxPoker - seems to specialize in Limit Holdem which is what I presently play most; however, through ThisIsTheNuts, you can get this free if you generate enough rake.

Deuces-Cracked also looks good. Not quite as many videos to offer as the others do.

SNGIcons - specializes in SNGs... but may be too specialized since they cost about the same as the others.

Donkit - also specializes in SNGs. I viewed one of them and I thought it was good. Selection might be the issue here as it looks like they are not adding new videos.

I'm sure that there are others and if you know of any, please let me know. I will keep you updated on how it goes. I really want to get into some NL cash but didn't fair to well this month.

We'll see how it goes.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The Lost Room

A little non poker stuff here. I recently rented the Lost Room which was a 6 part mini series starring Peter Krause. Very good stuff. I highly recommend it. The basic gist is that there these objects from some event in the sixties that does different things such as "the key" which will teleport you through any door with a lock to any other door that you can picture in your mind via a motel room. Another object (the comb) as they are called freeze the world around you. Anyway, Peter Krause's daughter gets lost in this motel room (which resets itself after every time you close the door to the way it was) so he goes on a quest to find his daughter. The ending wasn't perfect was still good enough for me to give it two thumbs up.

Poker... ah yes...

Well, like some others, I decided to play regular SNGs as opposed to Turbos to see if it truly makes a difference. After my first set of four, it was a definite yes with a one 1st and 2nds. I'm wondering if that is a pretty good sample size to judge how things will go. Hmmmm... Probably not.

I played my second set last night. 7th, 7th, 7th and 9th. Oops. Let's see. AA lost to J5s who thouth it would be great to call a 500 dollar raise from the big blind. Of course I flop a set and he flops a flush. He pushed... I called. IGHN in 7th. Now keep in mind, almost all of these happened within one minute or two. JJ lost to AA which lost most of my chips as I didn't call his re-reraise all in and then I just lost a race with my AJ to his 33. IGHN in 9th. Nothing too bad about that one. Just poker. Next one... AA vs QQ... All in on Q high flop. DOH!!!!! 7th... Lastly, AK lost to AQ when he hit runner runner 4 card straight. Not to mention that I got stacked twice playing NL when I got outkicked twice when we both had trips.

The only good news of the night was that my 3/6 limit game did well enough to basically break even for the night.

BTW, some people don't like posting bad beats. I say post them. It's your blog.

Monday, August 13, 2007

What's it all mean

So the other day, I spoke about a horrible run I had been having. Of course, I would now like to tell that things have switched around I made up my losses and more; but that will not be the case today. To tell you the truth, I took a 4 day sabbatical and returned to the scene tonight. Things started out well as I jumped out of the gate going +100 in my first few dozen of hands playing 2 tables of 2/4 and one table of 3/6. Then what happened... somebody rivered a gut shot and two successful people hit flushes when I flopped top pair.

Anyway, that is not the point of this post.

The other day, I mention a lousy 9%WSD after about 100 hands. To tell you the truth, after 243 hands, that number was up 41%; but I still lost $192 on the session. So I looked a few things. Actually, out of the 234 hands, I only went to showdown 29 times and actually was positive over the 29 hands albeit barely... but positive is positive. Considering where I was at, I can live with that.

Something else had to cause the problem. How about going to showdown and losing 17 for $275 and going to showdown 12 times and winning $283.. OK, that is the same thing as above with just a little more detail.

I folded before showdown 44 for a loss of $246. Take a way the blinds and I folded 13 times for a loss of $69. Again doesn't seem terrible. You are obviously going to see flops and fold before showdown so that doesn't seem to terrible. Conversely, I lost $177 in the blinds in 31 hands. That's not good. I had a 34.78 VPIP from BB and a 56.25% from SB. Off hand, the SB number looks high. It's hard to say if I was just calling or raising; but I can say I raised from the SB the 2nd most from any position (button was first). About half of those were one that it was folded to me. So big question marks on my blind play. Need to look at that.

This night the only position that I was positive was on the button and the cutoff which hopefully is always the case. Position, Position, Position.

The obvious problem that night was short term variance for the most part, I believe. When you have draws that don't hit and you have draws that hit against you, that can cause variance. Perhaps, check calling might be a better strategy to use when that scare cards comes on the river; but I certainly don't like it. It shows weakness... or does it. If they were on a draw, the most likely aren't going to call your river value bet (again assuming 6 handed limit holdem); but if you check planning on calling no matter what (within reason); but maybe you are actually saving yourself a bet. I think that is where pokertracker might have to come in to decide if this a guy that would go all the way to the end on a draw

Overall, my VPIP for that night was 31.62 with a preflop raise of 11.11 (which is low but understandable giving cards). Won win seeing the flop was 25.61% which is low but in line with the W$SD number. Went to Showdown was 35% which is OK. Total aggression was 1.74 which is just OK with AF on river being the least. Am I giving up on post that I could take down with a river bet? Who knows?

So, what does it all mean? That is the question? First and foremost, I will be looking more closely my blind play and also at my drawing hands. Am I truly getting the price to get to that flush or open ended straight.

That should do it for now. Like many people, I have given in and will be trying to actually start exercising and losing some weight that I have added over the last 10 years. I joined Gold's Gym tonight and hope to get into a routine. I will be trying to know off something in the range of 30 pounds. The price was pretty good as compared to the YMCA that my wife was going to. She was paying somewhere in the neighborhood of $45 for a single membership and it is only $30 at Gold's. Perhaps, the only bad thing is the Gold's is not a kid friendly place. They do have a kids area for when you are working out; but no kids are allowed anywhere else. We'll see how it goes.
Also Fuel55 is running a new Heads Up Challenge. As a former champion, I most likely will be playing. I was hesitant at first because I thought he was requiring everybody play HU matches without blind increases; but that doesn't seem to be the case. It was just a suggestion. That would just take too long for since I don't get to the computer until late due to kids. Head over to his site for details.

Have a nice day..

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Be careful what you wish for

We all look for tables that are full of people that see tons of flops and call down to the river looking for whatever they can find... Be careful for what you wish for as they will hit their hands occasionally or in my case most of the time.

There is a key stat for me when it comes to Poker Tracker at least playing Limit poker. That is W$SD which translates to Won $ at Showdown. In other words, if means what percent of the time that you go all the way to showdown are you winning. I think a rule of thumb is to see this number greater than 50% but more ideally above 55%. My W$SD after a little over 100 hands last night was 9.25%. Just think, I was complaining when this number was in 30% range over the past week. 9.25% is just insane.

I won't go into details on the beats; but one really stood out to me as typical of the way things have been going. I get KK in the BB. It is raised and reraised before me. Let me backup and say that the table was a good table on average seeing 40% of the flops with only 8% raises. Anyway, I of course pop it three times and the original raiser caps it. Flop comes all low cards and all hearts. I bet out (I don't have a heart). Original raiser raises and next guy pops it again. I just shake my head and fold my Kings. Nothing too exciting on turn and river. Any ideas what original raiser and capper had? Yep, Q6 of hearts. Be careful what you wish for.

Another hand AK.. I continue to raise and bet out. T on the river and Mr QT decides to call down all of my betting. Be Careful what you wish for.

Inside Straights. Oh yeah, more of those... to the tune of 3 of them hit on the river. Be Careful what you wish for.

Flushes. Wouldn't want to miss those. They don't bother me too much as there are too many people that will call down with flush draws and open enders. That is just the nature of the beast in limit poker. But dang, it would be nice to hit flush draws with the frequency of the people that draw out their flush draws.

2nd Nuts. Yep, 3 times the 2nd nut straights not good enough.

2outers, 3 outers... etc... etc... I'm sure that you get the point.

Oh yeah, I did suck out once last night. I had that terrible hand of AA but unbeknownst to me, I was behind his 95o who called all of my raises and turned 2 pair; but I four flushed him on the river.

This post was obviously just to blow some steam and hope that by posting it things will turn around as they do when you post good results which ultimately causes a downswing.

So, be careful what you wish for in your opponents as they will hit.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Are you ready for some FOOTBALL!!!!

So, who is ready for football.. I know I am. I didn't watch too much of the game last night with the Steelers and the Saints; but you can bet I will be watching the Cowboys/Colts game on Thursday.

But wait, this is a poker blog.

Poker continues to go blah!!!!!!! If I see somebody else hit an inside straight on the river against me.... OK, who knows what I will do. I continue to win at showdown at or below 42% which is practically inconceivable.

I finally decided to set up an ePassporte acct. Boy, do I miss Neteller. With ePassporte, I am presently limited to only load $300 per day and then once I make the load, I don't see it my acct for almost 2 weeks, even though it has been taken from my bank acct. Very frustrating. Speaking of Neteller, I did get my money back from them so I have that going for me.

Now, back to something a little more exciting.

As a given, I am huge Dallas Cowboys football fan so I obviously was interested in the Hall of Fame inductions there year. Say what you will about Michael Irvin, but I thought his speech was awesome. He was very open and candid of the good times and the bad. Others have also thought that it was pretty good so maybe it just wasn't my biased perspective.

Without seeing much or hearing much about training camp this year, I truly expect the Cowboys to be one of the top teams in the NFC. I fully expect Tony Romo to be the man and lead the Boys back to the promised land.

That's about it as I just wanted to put a few words out there since I hadn't posted in a while.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

More Mooook Action

Another Wednesday Night, another Mook. Truly, my favorite of all blogger tournaments. I think mostly because it has the highest turnout due to the $10 buyin. How did I fare? I'll tell you... but first...

The paper check cash from the small site that I cashed out and cleared so I guess I am good. By the way, it came Fedex in less than a week so kudos for the quick turnaround. I opened the Fedex package and all there was in there was a plain white envelope with no writing. You know the rest as there was a hand written check in there. Anyway, I couldn't resist anymore and I started to play a little no limit (1/2 and 2/4) with the almost $1,200 in there. I think Karma had something to do it with as I lost buyins with QQ against 89 on a 8 high flop. Chips go in.. next card.. an 8. Next day... JJ gets all the chips in against AT on a T high board... next card... T. Next day... QQ gets all chips in against Q9s.. Flushed out on turn. Yesterday... Hit my Broadway Straight on turn only to get boated on River. I think you get the point. Anyway, I think I am a little under $900 on there now with a good session after the first lost buyin yesterday.

I finally set up an ePassporte account and got it verified. Pretty painless so we will see how they work. Now, if I could only get my Neteller money released to me.

Onto the Mook. Surprisingly, my starting table had a lot of names that I didn't recognize as about half of them were in their first or second Mook. That, of course, didn't change anything for me as I am typically pretty conservative early on while waiting for the right time to take a chance since it was a deep stack.

I folded my first 11 hands and then picked up a fairly nice hand (AsAh)... 1 caller to my raise; but folded to c-bet. On had 23, I decided to take my chance and raised with J9d from Middle position. Flop comes AJT with 2 hearts. I through out a c-bet and get raised pretty big by Bornlate55. Again, I don't know this person, so I give him the benefit of the doubt and throw my hand away. This hand got me to thinking about something Alan wrote about regarding continuation bets and I vowed from there to change things up a little. Nothing original, mind you, but the delayed contiuation bet would be my new theme. It seemed to work pretty well in position or out. Out of position, I would check the flop and check/raise the turn and I got my needed laydowns as I'm sure that I was behind. Of course, you have to be careful anytime you give people free cards and I did fold to turn bets when I felt that I couldn't get a fold.

I'm down to about 2,500 now and pick Aces again on Hand 31. No action. I did get one call; but again they folded to my c-bet. I try not to get too fancy with Aces... especially on a 456 board. I then win a small pot with 99. 99 would be huge for me in the tourney; both good and bad. I slowly build my stack to about 3,200 when the first big hand happened.

I get one of my favorite hands... JTs.. Blinds are 40/80 and I am on the button. SmackBob in middle position makes it 200 to go and of course I call with JTs (diamonds). Flop comes K44 (1 diamond). Check Check.. hmmm.. is he weak or trapping? Turn brings another 4. SmackBob leads out for 201. I pause; but knowing that I am raising and raise to 670 which he calls. The river brings a T for a board of Ks4d4c4sTs. SmackBob checks. What do you do? I'm reasonably sure that I just won it on the river; but what is he going to call that doesn't beat me? Not much. I check and win. He had AQo. I doubt that he is calling that. Who value bets there? That was hand 53.

Fast forward to Hand 68 and it is showdown #2 with SmackBob. Blinds are now 50/100 and I'm sitting in the BB with A40. I have around 4100 chips and Smackbob has 3400. We get two limpers and I check to see a flop which is 2h4cJs giving me bottom pair. Check Check Check. Turn comes my Ace. I check raise SmackBob after he bets 100 to 300. He makes it 700... meanwhile he is saying that he is on tilt (although I'm not sure why as I am playing multiple tables and didn't catch anything unusual). I make the call as I'm thinking this is a little revenge from earlier; but pretty sure I'm ahead. I actually thought he might have JTs. Q comes on river and I check (pot control???). SmackBob bets out 1200. Now, I'm beginning to think he has JackAce; but make the call based on original read and he shows Q8s. Nice!!! Does Anybody push there? One of my main thoughts every tournament is do NOT go busto with Ace Rag. That hands puts me at 6220 and among the leaders.

Now, on to Hand 94. One which I'm pretty sure that I played pretty badly all around. I Would appreciate any comments here. Blinds 80/160 and I'm sitting on a 6000 stack. The villain in this hand is another unknown to me (AdrewaOlaf) who has me out chipped. I get JdJh in the small blind. Andrew puts in 3x from MP. I just call????? Flop comes 4s8c5s . I check raise his 660 bet to 1660. he calls. Turn.. Qs which of course is a terrible card for me. Instead of checking or pushing, I decide to bet 2750 (of my 3900). Comments????? He folds and I take down a pretty big pot.

A couple hands later I take out the immortal Al when I woke up with KK against his AJ. Only one question here as it is an obvious call or raise. When it was my turn to act from MP, I waited before I called as there were 3 people yet to act. They ended up folded and there was no love for Al and he promptly asked if I just slowrolled. First, let me say, that I can't think of anything I hate more in poker than slow rollers. More specifically, when they are the last person to act and know that are going to call. I told him no that I had other tables open which was only partly true. I did have 2 other tables open and it did take me a few seconds before I saw this hand; but I did intentionally pause before calling. My question to you is this really slow rolling? I don't think so as I am trying to get other people involved in the hand. If this is truly regarded as a slow roll, I apologize... as it was not intended as such.

Hand 112 sees me using my delayed cbet with a check raise with KQ on a 7cAhKc2h board. My check on flop induced a bet on the turn which I raised and took it down. More than likely, I was ahead; but I got some chips out of the deal. From here, I take advantage of my stack. Sometimes it worked and sometimes it didn't; but that is the luxury of a big stack. Nobody seems to be better than Astin as I saw him raise pot after pot after pot.

So by Hand 199, I have worked my way up to 11804 with blinds of 300/600 75ante. We'll call this Race decision #1. Jordan (20,155) did a typical big stack steal attempt and raises to 1800. I have 7h7s and just call in SB. Riggstad (7215) in BB then seemingly pulls a squeeze play and goes all in. The Devil's Advocate folds and now it is up to me. Getting a little over 2-1 do I call hoping for a race (at best)? It felt like a squeeze and I called and won the race against AQ. I will say it again and again. You HAVE to win races or coin tosses... or should I say that I HAVE to win races in order to win. Sure you can accumulate chips with raises and re-raises.. but somewhere along the way you have to go to showdown. Of course, it is much easier to push knowing the best you can do is race; but calling is a much tougher decision.

A couple hands later, a delayed continuation bet again got some more chips. This time against an aggressive Astin. I raised with JTo and hit 2 pair on flop. This put my chip count over 30K.

Hand 204... Race Decision #2 or really just decision as I didn't know it was going to be a race. Blinds 300/600 ante75. I raise with my big stack (30K) from EP with T9s (diamonds). Weak_player goes (6646) goes all in from BB. Again, getting right about 2-1, I think for a while and take most of my time before I call. He shows 88 and the flop of 969 pretty much seals the deal. He obviously didn't like the call. Any thoughts? This puts me at 37K.

I continue to put pressure on people and work stack up to 43K but get pushed back a few and stack back down to 36K. We're in the money by now and everybody is pretty healthy. Of course, winning at showdown is huge; but making the tough laydowns is also tough. For example:
Hand 256: Blinds 600/1200 ate 150 (7 handed). I look down in EP and have QcQh and raise to 3650. Dr J (35K) pushes back for 12K. Push or Call? I wimp and call hoping not to see an Ace or King on flop. Flop is 2K4 and I check/fold to Jeciimd 12K bet. I'm not sure what to think of this one. His range is fairly tight and that is why I went that way. That takes me down to 24K.

Hand 275. Race#3. I don't have a problem with how I played this hand. It's just poker. Blinds 800/1600 ante200 (7 handed still). I (22400) look down to AKs (hearts). and raise from EP to 4850. DrJ (33k) calls. Flop of 336 and I push my remaining 17K. Jeciimd tanks and then calls with Presto (55). Well, Presto isn't gold as I luckbox an Ace on the turn. Stack now 48K and 2nd place.

Hand 294. Another 99 dilemma. Blinds 1000/2000 ate 250. I have dwindled down to 35K. I get 99 and raise to 6150. Crazdgamer calls. Flop 7K7 and he immediately pushes. Stop and Go? I think not and take my losses. Stack 29K 4th place (of 7).

Hand 298. Back in Business. Blinds 1000/2000 ante 250 (6 handed). I (25K) get pocket Jacks and raise to 6150 again from EP. OOSSUUU754 calls. Flop TT2 and OSU bets out 14800. If I'm beat, I'm beat and push and of course he calls the 4K K8. I get a J on turn to seal the deal. Stack up to 52K 2nd place.

Hand 302. Crushing Blow with 99. Blinds 1000/2000 ante 250 (6 handed). I am now chip leader with 49K. 2nd place crazdgamer has 46K and raises from MP to 8000. I call with 99. Flop of 265 and he c-bets 7500. What do you do? I took my full time and raised to 22K. He then pushed for another 17K. Is there anyway you get away from this now? I made the crying call and he showed JJ and won a huge pot of 94K taking me down to 3K and obviously last place.

I get AQ a couple hands later and double up. Fold QT from BB a little later. Double up next hand with K6o. Steal blinds with KJ. Double up with QQ and just like that I'm back to 33K and in 3rd place out of 4.

Hand 339. Final. Nothing major.. I push with JackAce and get called with KT. King on flop and I am out in 3rd place. Close but no cigar to my 3rd Mookie Title.

Congrats to Crazdgamer on his win.!!!!

Have a nice day!!!!
Who links to my website?