Monday, October 22, 2007

I have a good reason for my delay in blog entries....

Hey guys, I'm excited to announce that we are moving. I have recently come to an agreement to start blogging for, a website started by Barry Greenstein and his son Joe Sebok. Tonight I submitted my 1st entry for the site, and we should be live by the time you read this post. Needless to say I'm very excited to work with these guys, along with other poker professionals they have brought on.

My next entry will be on the pokerbowl tournament I played today in Vegas, and then I will post a 2 or 3 part blog series on what I have been promising forever to do and you guys have been anticipating since this summer........ My win in the Bellagio Cup III World Poker Tour event in July.

So come join us at

Until then~


Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Not a good start to WCOOP

So today we start event #16 of 23, Pot-Limit Omaha Hi/lo. So far I have a whopping 1 cash, which was in event #5 the 500nl last Sunday. These events are long and take a lot of concentration to stay focus, because one slip up over a 14-22 hour tournament and your toast. I've had good starts in both Sunday NL events, more then tripling my starting stack by the 1st break yet I ended up making mistakes later. I also had a very good start to the 200 rebuy, had like 31k at the 1st break and was in for either the minimum of $615 or 1 rebuy for a total of $815. Again I fizzled late, as has been the trend for me outlasting like 75% of the field but not making the money. I'm not really worried though, variance is obviously a part of the game and will catch up to me in time for the main event =).

A lot of people have been complaining about the length of the tournaments, saying that they need to be 2 day events. The debate really heated up after event #5 lasted 20.5 hours, starting at 4:30 est and finishing at 1:08pm est Monday. I definitely agree that perhaps the Sunday events could warrant being 2 day events, but I think making them all 2 day events is a little extreme. Conversation especially was sparked when a couple of top players went deep in this and complained that they were falling asleep while trying to play for over 400k. It takes a different kind of animal to stay focused for the long haul, which is why I want to give props to James "" Mackey for taking down event #14 the 1k NL for a cool 580k on Sunday. I had to sleep when there were only 3 tables left but he was putting on a clinic for the hours I had been railing.

Hopefully the last 8 events go better then the first 15 have. There has also been an interesting trend developing in the 100 rebuys on stars, which I will go into in a few days but I think there maybe some funny business going on. In closing, I wanted to send a big congrats to Annette_15 who last week won the 1st ever WSOP Europe main event. At 18 years and 363 days old, not only did she become the 1st ever woman to win the main event, but also became the youngest main event champion breaking Phil Hellmuth's record, but also became the youngest bracelet winner, including preliminary events breaking Steve "MrSmokey1" Billirakis's 3 month old record. Beyond her just being a deserving person of such an amazing event, I really think it could end up doing wonders for poker in general, possibly having a similar or even better effect on poker as Moneymaker's win 5 years ago did which caused the poker boom which we enjoy today.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Moochi in the little league...

Growing up as a lad one of my favorite movies was Moochie in the Little League. It was a black and white movie about a little boy about 8 or 9 years old and his little league team. They ended up going on a lengthy winning streak, and being superstitious Moochie had a pair of lucky socks which he wore for every game during the streak, without washing. When I was about 9 or 10, I used to emulate this character during my own little league seasons. I remember one team I was on was undefeated and won the championship, and by the end of the season I had to hide my socks from my Mom when she would be doing laundry. Man were those socks brutal by the end of that time.

Why do I bring this up? Well with all the big tournaments on Sundays, which are usually followed with major disappointment which is where the term "suicide sundays" has come from, I find myself on my own little Sunday winning streak. With the variance of MTTs, no one should ever get too down on themselves for a losing session or consecutive losing sessions causing a losing streak. As a rough estimate, I think it would be safe to say that I probably have a winning Sunday only about 25% of the time or so, if even that much. Today I'm trying to have my 3rd consecutive winning Sunday, which I'm not sure if I have ever done before, and this maybe my 1st back to back winning Sundays ever. If not my 1st time, it's only been a handful of times. So last week I took 2nd in the warm-up for 41k, 2 weeks ago I won the UB 500nl beating a sick player and good friend Rizen heads up to win 20k. Just like Moochie, I woke up today and put on the same pants, t-shirt and hoodie that I have worn for the last 2 Sundays, finding myself a little superstitious although I have washed these items.

Today is a big day, with the 3rd day of WCOOP underway with event #5 and FullTilt having their monthly million guarantee. Here is a look at my schedule for those who are interested. (all times are local for me, chicago time)

11:45 200+15 Poker stars Sunday Warm-up
12:00 100+9 Poker stars
12:00 100+9 Bodog 30k guarantee (already busto, runnin AA into QQ in level 1)
1:00 100+9 w/ rebuys Poker stars
3:00 100+9 Bodog 100k guarantee
3:00 10+1 w/ rebuys Poker stars
3:30 500+30 Poker stars WCOOP event #5, 2 million guarantee
4:00 200+15 Ultimate Bet 200k guarantee
5:00 500+35 FullTilt Million guarantee
5:30 300+20 Poker stars Wcoop event #5 second chance
6:00 100+9 Poker stars 20k guarantee
6:05 200+16 Fulltilt Sunday Mulligan 100k guarantee
6:30 100+9 w/ rebuys Poker stars
7:00 150+13 Fulltilt 55k guarantee
7:00 150+12 Absolute weekly 75k guarantee
7:30 500+30 Ultimate Bet 75k guarantee
8:00 200+15 w/ rebuys Pokerstars

Friday, September 14, 2007

I've been slacking...starting WCOOP today

Wow it's been so long since since I've made an entry, and I apologize. I've been super busy and I apologize for my slacking. Alot has gone opn in the last 3 weeks, poker related and un related. Last Sunday, I feel like I finally broke thru in a major. A few months ago I took 3rd in the UB 200k for like 17k, and in the past I had won the Paradise 150k two times, along with their 150k masters PLO (when we used to be able to play there *tear*)but even tho they were considered "majors" I personally didn't consider them to be majors because none of them had a prize pool over 200k. Each of the Dise wins were between 28k-35k, which is nothing to turn my nose up at, but up[ until Sunday I felt like I only had done well in a major event online 1 time in 3 years of playing online for a living, and that was a 3rd place finish a year and a half ago in the party 750k for about 80k. On sunday I took 2nd in the stars sunday warm-up, which had a 400k guarantee, and paid roughly 40k for 2nd, while 1st was about 80k. I feel like I pretty much played perfect poker the whole time, and don't remember a single hand I would have played different. I will know this for sure when I make the video for

The final table was stacked with talent, fortunately I had a pretty good seat on the other 2 great players at the table, with SCTrojans on my immediate right and Apestyles on his immediate right. Both really good friends of mine, SCTrojans ended up finishing 6th for 14k when his AJ couldn't beat A9 aipf, and I found myself heads up when apestyles went out 3rd losing a race A5 vs 44 aipf to the other player, and eventual winner yokerface. Heads up started almost even in chips, yoker had a slight CL on me but it was not a significant one, something like 11m to 9.5m, and the blinds were 100k-200k. With about 100 BB's in play, I figured the HU would last a while, as I planned to chip away at this guy, but only a few hands into it I was dealt AK, he was dealt 1010, and after a few raises back and forth pre-flop we ended up all-in pre-flop and I lost a huge race for most of the chips in play.

I was definitely disapointed with 2nd, but very happy with my play. I switched gears when I needed to, got lucky when I needed to (except the last hand), and think it will make an excellent video. With 2,085 players, a victory would have marked the largest online field I had ever conquered, but the 2nd place cash of 41k did mark my highest cash ever on stars, and 2nd highest ever online. Oh well, there will always be more in the future......LIKE TODAY'S START TO POKER STAR'S WCOOP (world championships of online poker. There are 2 events today, the $200 NLHE 6-max, which already has a whopping 3,400 entrants registered 30 minutes before start, and $200 pot limit 5 card draw, which will have a much smaller turnout, I imagine around 700 people. The next 2 weeks are going to be so much fun, with killer prize pools in not only the WCOOP events but regular tournaments too because of higher volume of players. It's time for me to get my 1st big win it!

So I'm excited, On Wednesday I finally bought my new car, a 2007 Chrysler 300 Touring. For the most part everything went smooth, until it came to closing the deal, when for every time they told me "it will take 5 minutes" it really took about 30...LOL. I drove it off the lot that night, met my Mom and Nephews Timmy and Tyler for dinner to show them. The look on my nephew's faces when I pulled up was priceless.

I returned the car today to have some upgrades taken care of, like 20" black rims, a custom front grill and tinted windows. Overall I'm very excited and happy with my purchase. OK, WCOOP is starting now, 4,610 players and 172k for 1st...wish me luck.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Tilt shoves are -EV

So I was cruising along tonight, playing great and stacks in a lot of good tournies. I end up losing a 45 BB race approaching the $ in the Tilt 55k, then AK<89o 10 from $ in stars 100r, and all of the sudden the only really good tourney I was left in was the Stars 1k which was paying almost 80k for 1st. I also had a really good stack in the 20r, and had started the 10pm 100nl's on all sites though the prizepools was kind of crappy comparatively speaking.

And then it happened... Having just made the money in the 1k with about 40 people left, I had a 45k stack which was almost 2x the average. A very strong player and friend of mine made it 2k @ 400-800 from UTG. I had J10o and clicked to fold before it was on me, but then as the table was folding I looked at the pot and realized that there was 3800ish in the pot and only 1200 more to call so i flipped it in to see a flop. I normally don't go broke w/ this hand on a Q10x flop, but utg bet 3700 w/ 13k behind and I read him for weakness so I shoved and he called pretty quickly w/ AK and promptly spiked an ace on the turn. So instead of approaching the chip lead and 70k I was back near average and eventually had 13k @ the 500-1000 level.

It folds to me on button, I jam 13k all-in w/ A9o, the SB calls quickly and I think I'm crushed but he flips over A8s. Eight ball np, I'm out and tilted. I then simultaneously shoved all-in in all 4 games, and of course I was only called in the 20r where we were deepest, and I had a 56k stack @ 600-1200 going vs KK against the only player who had me covered. OOPS. On the bright side it was my 1st cash in a stars 1k NL, and just the 2nd time I ever made the ante levels LOL.

So I was supposed to leave for L.A. on Thursday to play the Legends WPT starting Saturday but I decided to cancel my trip yesterday. I haven't really been feeling well the last week or so and I'm just not up for the travel so my next live event will have to wait until Foxwoods in November. I also plan on taking some time off after this weekend until the WCOOP in 2 weeks in hopes to be completely fresh and focused, not to mention take care of a bunch of other shit in my life.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Frustrating Sunday stacks, Monday crushilation

So I came up short once again in the majors, but played pretty well overall. I ended getting decent stacks and going deep in both the stars 2nd chance and FTOPS, finishing 29th and 85th or so. I was a little bitter about ftops, as I shoved 11 BB's from utg+1 w/ 88 and some moron who had like 500 chips less then me called off his whole stack on the button with A10 sooooooted. nh sir. My stack was a little swingy, but I don't think it was due to my usual big stack carelessness but rather situations that dictated themselves. I've really been trying to work on managing my big stacks deep in tournaments as this can be a major leak in my game at times.

The stars 2nd chance looked like it was going to be the one for me, I had about 150k @ 2k-4k with about 40 people left which was the biggest stack/ best chance I have ever had in this tournament, and I was playing great. I then lost a big race for about 65k of my chips, and at 3k-6k I made a standard 2.7x BB raise w/ 77 and about 78k stack, the BB shoved me and I called and I lost a race to his QQ. So overall I was happy with my Sunday, if not my results then definitely my play and I used the momentum going into Monday.

So on the bubble of the afternoon 100 rebuys, I was 17/19 with a stack of 14k and the blinds of 1k-2k. The bubble was pretty intense as there were 2 guys who had under 3k and just kept folding hoping that someone else would make a mistake. At one point, the BB had 2k in pot and 500 chips behind and he folded hoping to survive his SB hand, which of course he did LOL. At one point I folded KdJd in the hi-jack with a chance to be 1st in the pot with my 7 BB's (normally an auto shove), but a fold because of 2 players having less then 1 BB. So we get into the money and I've successfully blinded down to 11k with the blinds going up to 1.5k-3k when I picked up QQ in the SB to double vs A2 and I was up to about 25k. Sweet!!!! Still 17/17 LOL.

My short stack ninja expertise would be the them of this tournament, as I never had more then one player covered if not dead last in chips until we got to the final table, and at the final table I had 45k at 2.5k-5k and was 9/9. Soon I was 8/8, then 7/7 and 6/6...minutes later 5/5 and eventually I got 3 handed and was of course in 3rd place with about 100k @ 4k-8k while my two opponents were both between 400k-500k. I eventually got my stack up to about 550k, and after playing really snug the final 3 tables and even once we got 3-handed I decided to make a play. I called a button raise (his stack about 350k, while sb had 180k or so) with J8o in the BB. I then check/raised his c-bet all-in on an AQ10r flop with a double gutter, he tanked until he had about 5 seconds left and finally called with A2 and I missed my draw. I eventually went out in 3rd place, and also finished 8th in the 50 rebuys losing a CL pot for 25%+ of chips in play with QQ vs AK all-in pre.

Not a bad start to the night, and I was super pumped for FTOPS, the 1k NL 6-max tourney. That didn't go so well, though I did hit a one outer early on ( I was also one outed in the 50 rebuy earlier, kind of odd). I had a steady stack of around 6k during the 1st 2 hours until the antes kicked in entering the 3rd hour. I was very swingy and was eventually out around 300th of 1200+ starters after flopping TPTK vs bottom set w/ only 13 BBs to start the hand.

I had been grinding along in the tilt 150, having 10 BB's at the 120-240 25a level, when after shoving 63hh pre and sucking out on A10, I found a little rush and began stacking chippies. I was also deep in the 150 on stars where I eventually finished 29th. With 27 left in Tilt, Apestyles and I were both top 5 in chips and running our individual tables over. He's a really good friend of mine and almost as sick as I am. When we got down to 2 tables I was not really happy to see him at my table. He brings out the best in me, but I still would have rather seen him at the final table and no sooner. We entered the final table 2nd and 3rd in chips, and ape had direct position on the chip leader ( I mean how good does he run?). The final table was sick stacked, with Jason Gray, xxRagedxx, projectsix, and bubbledav along with Ape and I, not to mention #1pen who finished 11th just short of the final table.

When we got 5 handed Ape and I were 1/2 in chips, and I thought for sure we would end up heads up. Unfortunately for him it wasn't meant to be as I started some retardedly sick poker and abusing the entire table including him. I was making alot of huge bluffs at all the right times and showing to tilt everyone, still they still didn't start looking me up light as expected. I don't have any hand histories and was too lazy to record live for but it would have made a great video. I took 1st out of 542 runners for just over 20k and for the 2nd consecutive Monday I had a really great day of poker. Of course last Tuesday I followed it up by playing awful, and I haven't had a very good start today though not due to bad play. Hopefully I can avoid a repeat Tuesday performance after a welcomed Monday repeat.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

A funny story from Friday night.....

So in my apartment, we had one of our outlets wired to a separate electrical fuse because when we had the a/c plugged into the main fuse, we were blowing the fuse about 4 times a week, usually at night when it would be nice and dark outside for some reason. So Friday night, my friend Anne came over before going out to the bar to hang out. She was there only a few minutes, when we noticed the A/C wasn't on. Brilliantly, she determined the outlet wasn't working, noticed the outlet right next to it (on the main fuse) and plugged it in. BOOM! The A/C was working, I completely fail to realize what was ahead and she heads off to the bar.

About 12:30, everything goes out... I had blown a fuse. A little backgorund... I've lived in this apartment for 15 months, and have been so lazy that I still don't have keys to the laundry room or the storage room (where the fuse box is). No problem, I'll just call my roomate and see where he's at and when he'll be home, oh yeah he's in St. Louis for a wedding till Sunday night. Fuck, so I call my best friend George to see if he has keys, and of couorse that is the one key he doesn't have a copy of.

So I go outside to see if either of my 2 neighbors' lights are on showing possible life of being awake. Of course thats a big negative, along with the gut shot that maybe the door is unlocked downstairs. So I go back into my pitch black apartment, try calling my roommate but it goes right to voice mail meaning his phone is probably dead. I try searching for any keys that might be laying around, when I eventually find a flashlight in my roommate's office, of course the batteries are dead. If it was like 8pm I'd call the landlord, of course I realize that I don't have his phone number either so I start looking for something to break the window to the storage room and let myself in.

It's hard to find things in pitch black apartments, so I first grab the remote control and I think I would have had better luck breaking the window with the actual key. Fully armed with an oven mit on my hand and dish towel covering my arm I take a couple whacks ( trying to prevent cutting myself if my arm should happen to go through the window if I'm actually successful in breaking the window since that would be an even bigger disaster seeing as I don't have a running car to drive myself to the hospital.) I head back up stairs, and grab an iron....sweet this should work. You ever try swinging an iron? Ya... not so much.

I head back up to the apartment, and this is actually the point where I find the flash light in the office. This was one of those heavy duty flashlights, built like steel, easy to swing...should be no problem. I spend like 5 minutes taking about 50 swings, and I swear this glass window was laughing at me the whole time. This was the strongest glass I had ever encountered. After breaking the flashlight, I headed back into my apartment on the verge of tears. Not sure what I'm going to do, I go outside to sit on my front porch and ponder the situation. I noticed my downstairs neighhbor's TV on, I peak in the window...DING! He's up, I borrow his key and turn the fuses back on and I'm saved. WHEW!

So my sunday is off to a rough start, which is why I have time to write this. Hopefully I'm just getting the bad shit out of the way early. I lasted about 20 minutes combined in the warm-up and 1pm 100nl on stars. The warm-up wasn't really my fault, I thought I was making a value shove on the river vs a very active opponent, but was blind sided by my opponents hand. In the 100nl I lost AA to QK, and definitely should have folded the river with plenty of chips to play.

Hand from the warm-up....

PokerStars Game #11447802073: Tournament #57254865, $200+$15 Hold'em No Limit - Level II (50/100) - 2007/08/12 - 13:00:24 (ET)
Table '57254865 102' 9-max Seat #5 is the button
Seat 1: appelmoush (10300 in chips)
Seat 2: BeL0WaB0Ve (9850 in chips)
Seat 3: Dellboy64 (8125 in chips)
Seat 4: netzroller (10725 in chips)
Seat 5: jorg1 (8925 in chips)
Seat 6: imawhale26 (9650 in chips)
Seat 7: EX_IT_LJ (8825 in chips)
Seat 8: shaneAMSTRDM (13000 in chips)
Seat 9: gino47 (9700 in chips)
imawhale26: posts small blind 50
EX_IT_LJ: posts big blind 100
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to BeL0WaB0Ve [9h 9d]
shaneAMSTRDM: raises 200 to 300
gino47: folds
appelmoush: folds
BeL0WaB0Ve: calls 300
Dellboy64: folds
netzroller: folds
jorg1: folds
jorg1 is sitting out
imawhale26: folds
EX_IT_LJ: folds
*** FLOP *** [Tc 7h 9c]
shaneAMSTRDM: bets 200
BeL0WaB0Ve: raises 500 to 700
shaneAMSTRDM: calls 500
*** TURN *** [Tc 7h 9c] [3d]
shaneAMSTRDM: bets 1000
BeL0WaB0Ve: raises 2250 to 3250
shaneAMSTRDM: calls 2250
*** RIVER *** [Tc 7h 9c 3d] [Qs]
shaneAMSTRDM: bets 2000
BeL0WaB0Ve: raises 3600 to 5600 and is all-in
shaneAMSTRDM: calls 3600
*** SHOW DOWN ***
BeL0WaB0Ve: shows [9h 9d] (three of a kind, Nines)
shaneAMSTRDM: shows [Kd Jc] (a straight, Nine to King)
shaneAMSTRDM collected 19850 from pot
*** SUMMARY ***

I really felt my opponent was putting out a block bet with QJ, when he had actually flopped a double gut shot that I hadn't seen. Alot of times I will flat call here, but I felt like I would be losing value for some reason and called. Hopefully my day isn't filled with more mistakes like this.