Monday, October 22, 2007
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 www.pokerroad.com.
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
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 "mig.com" 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
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
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 baby...book 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
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
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 www.pokerXfactor.com 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
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
BeL0WaB0Ve: calls 300
jorg1 is sitting out
*** 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.
Wednesday, August 8, 2007
As for online, to say I've been in a drought between pokerstars and fulltilt the last 2 months would be an understatement. Thankfully I had some success on UltimateBet and Absolute to keep me from completely drowning both mentally and financially. That all changed Monday, as I had one of my best days online in months. I gained dominating stacks in most everything I played, made 4 FTs with a win in the Tilt 50 rebuys, 3rd in stars 100 rebuy, 3rd in stars 30 rebuy 6-max, and 6th in Tilt 75nl after losing a big race 6-handed to get short. In addition, I also bubbled 2 more final tables including the Stars nightly 100k. The ironic part is of all the tournaments I played, the 50 rebuy win was definitely the one that I played the worst in. It was my last tournament after busting from the stars 100k, and I seriously think I voluntarily put chips in the pot pre-flop on something like 60 consecutive hands, folding "occasionally" to a few shoves after I had raised, called a raised, or just limped. It was completely insane, and in all honesty I got really lucky to win.
After my big live win, I took a week away from poker for a few reasons. As far as poker goes, I wanted to make sure I was completely focused when I returned online playing my usual tournaments after making such a large score live. I am confident I was completely focused when I returned, but I have been running bad and it was taking a toll on me mentally. Again last Wednesday, I took a 4-day break, returned Sunday refreshed and focused and it showed. I also took a chance to hang with some friends and family during my 1st week back from Vegas, which felt good as I usually don't have a ton of time away from my usual poker schedule. I've decided to stick to taking Thursdays and Fridays off from poker to enjoy other aspects of life more (of course exceptoins for FTOPS/ WCOOP).
In conclusion, FTOPS V starts tomorrow, and like I was saying last Monday night "MY TURN". This is my new slogan, kind of like that KenneyBrynn guy and his "all it takes is confidence." I feel a big series coming up, and it all starts tomorrow. I bettter get some sleep.
Thursday, June 14, 2007
Sunday, June 10, 2007
Tuesday- Played the 1k rebuy and Imper1um was at my starting table. LOL @ him wanting to go all-in blind 1st hand. I told him I wasn't going to go all-in blind but I was going to be willing to gamble if I picked up a hand like QJs, 10Js, suited Ace, pairs, etc. 1st hand he shoves blind 35o and I wake up to AK and double after somehow dodging his 46Q flop. Up to 8k and wide-eyed at the prospects of a large stack if I found some hands and Sorel decided to run bad for the 1st time in his life, after Sorel's 57o cracked JJ he shoved 5k or so with 22 and I called with AK again. He flops a set, let the rebuying begin. The rest of the rebuy period, which was 2 hours long, did not go very well and I ended up with just over the minimum of 8,400 and I was in for 10k, 7 rebuys and 2 add-ons which was 2k over the budget I set for myself. Oh well.
After the rebuys were over I dipped down to 5,500 then started to gain some momentum and was back to around 11k when I picked up AdKd in the SB. The worst player at the table opened to 700 @ 100-200 25a from MP, I made it 3500 he shoves for 6,200 and I turn a flush draw but miss for 13k pot vs his KK. Left with about 5k, I pretty much folded and the 1st hand after the break I shoved 4,200 utg+2 with JJ and Imper1um called with AQ in th SB. The blinds were 150-300 25a and my stack was very odd to play so I just decided to ship and see 5 cards. He flopped a Q and GG me.
So I move onto the 1,500 Omaha hi/lo which I won 1 complete pot the entire tournament and I was eliminated shortly into level 3. This wasn't originally on my schedule but I felt it was worth playing since they had around 700 entrants. My desire to win my 1st bracelet definitely influenced this decision.
Wednesday was the 2,000nl which also had a huge field. My 1st table had David Williams and a couple other players who I recognized. I started out pretty aggressive and had chipped up around 5,000 when I 3-bet an 8c2c2h flop with 8h4h (I raised pre-flop) and ran into KK. The pot was about 7,500 with 2 others who had seen the flop also, and I went running hearts for my 1st suckout...oops?
That table broke with about 15 minutes left in the 50-100 level and my new table was very different. I didn't recognize anyone and everyone was between 2k and 4k (we started with 4k) except for the 2 players who were seated to my immediate left. They both had around my 9k give or take a thousand. Seeing as I was fortunate to have the 9k stack I was holding, I decided to establish a tight image and proceeded to only play 5 or 6 hands over the next hour and fifteen minutes until the 100-200 25 ante level. Then the plan was to get aggressive once the antes kicked in.
This pretty much worked and I was up to aroound 15k when I attempted my 1st official blow-up of the tournament. I say official because I know had a great stack where as early I was willing to be aggressive to get a stack. Chris McCormick had been moved to my table a little bit earlier and he opened utg+1 for 650. He had about 13k and I decided to just call utg +2 with 99 and see the flop. The flop came down KK10 w/ 2 diamonds which I really felt was a good flop for me and I called his 1,200 bet on the flop. The turn was awful...another 10 now giving me 9 high. He checked and I decided I was going to try and make it look like I was trying to get value with my king betting 1,400 on turn with plans of betting 3,500-4,000 on river as long as a baby came. I really felt like he would look me up on turn with Ace high but fold on river. Instead he check-raised with his ace high to 3,200 and I folded immediately. So now I feel outplayed having to fold the best hand bc of the board and he limps utg for 200. This is where I decide to get retarded and make it 900 w/ 10d4d utg+1. He calls and I bet 1,500 on KdQd4h flop, which he raises to 5,000 and I end up shipping for 7,500ish more. He calls with KhQh and I river the 8d for a pot worth something around 26k.
Right here I should have gone back to being tight after what the table had just witnessed and waited for some good hands to play or the blinds to get even higher and worth stealing but no, of course I couldn't do this. I had to try and win the tournament in the next 2 hours of course. Long story short, I got chopped back to 15k before the 200-400 50a even started and proceeded to yo-yo between 9k and 15k playing way to many hands when I raised to 1,350 from MP w/ K7cc and the BB shoved for about 4,500 more. Everyone was shoving on me, and I was getting a little frustrated and knew the BB was capable of shipping it in light so I decided to call hoping I was a 40/60 at worst vs a hand like AQ or AJ and maybe even a 60/40 favorite vs QJ or something like that. He ends up having QQ and I lose a race chopping me down to 8k. After paying the blinds and seeing a flop on the button I had 6,100 at the last hand of 200-400 25a.
I opened with Ah10s from the c/o for 1,300 and this old guy in the BB asked me what I had behind and then proceeded to shove about 20,000 chips in the middle very forcefully. I could tell he was faking his strength, and he wanted to show me a wild bluff but I'm to proud for that. I called and he flipped over 2c3d and the board came out QhJh6x4h...river off suit 5 NH sir GG me?
Thursday/Saturday- Thursday was the 1,500 short handed event and Saturday was the 1,500 NLHE, which I decided to group together because they went the same way. Both were crap shoots and I didn't make the 1st break of either one, end of story.
Friday was the 5k pot-limit hold 'em event and after my blow-up in the 2k NL I was really psyched for this. PL strategy is so different then NL strategy and since there is never an ante the play is much much tighter. I knew this and I really needed this tournament to get back in the right mindset of playing tighter then I had been. Early on I played a few pots but never committed a lot of chips during one single hand when I was sitting slightly above the starting stack of 10,000 chips. At 50-100 I raised to 250 from MP with 9h7h and got called by John Hennigan in position, the small blind and John Gale in the BB. The flop came down Q96 with 2 diamonds and I bet 600, to which Hennigan and the SB folded but John Gale raised to 1,800. This board was so draw heavy that I really thought I might be ahead so I decided to call and re-evaluate on the turn. The turn was a complete brick and Gale lead for 2,200 with about 3,200 behind and i decided I likely have the best hand given how wild he plays, and my line would likely make him fold any queen. I was wrong, he called with 96 for 2 pair and I was left with about 2,000 chips.
I grinded so hard from here, playing only 3 or 4 hands the entire 75-150 and a few minutes into the 100-200 levels when I finally doubled up. Sitting on 2,700 chips I decided to raise to 550 from the c/o with A5 and the BB called. The flop was A high, the BB check/called my 800 bet and check called my shove of 1,300 on the turn. Slowplayed KK is no good son....5,500 for me! I get up to 6,400 when this very loose player opened for 700 from UTG+2. This was the 4th or 5th he raised my BB and I looked down to AQ, so I contemplated my options considering my sack and decided to make it 2,200 with 4,200 behind. The LAG player called very quickly and I was somewhat concerned. I decided I could still check/fold the flop if it wasn't a good flop for me, but when the flop came Q97 rainbow I moved all-in for just under a pot size bet. I have never seen anyone call so quickly, I surely thought I was dead to 99 for a set or slow-played KK/AA...but I was wrong, he flipped over the oh so powerful K10 off for a gutty and 1 over, and proceeded to spike a king on the river. I stormed out, didn't say goodbye to 3 friends at the table, didn't wish the players GL like I normally do, didn't attempt to say goodbye to Bax who was on the table behind me either. I was trembling with anger, confused as to what the heck had just happened.
Bax saw me storm out and came after me and asked me what happened, and I told him I'd tell him later but I couldn't talk about it. I got all the way to the taxi stand when I remembered that I had my ticket for Saturday's 1,500 NL in my back pocket. I decided to head back in and un-register, un sure if I wanted to stay here or head home on the next flight out. Fortunately for me the line was a gazillion people long since alot of people were registering for the 5 P.M. stud that was starting in less then an hour so I decided to go talk to Bax and a few others while they were on there break. I managed to cool down a bit and made it back to my hotel room in time to play all the nightly's online.
Every story has a happy ending. My game has been pretty sloppy that few weeks online, and I brought that into the live arena which can get very expensive very quick. So I ended up firing up 7 tournaments for the night and I was completely focused. I ended up bubbling the 100 rebuy on stars for a chip lead pot in a complete cooler hand, but managed to stay focused and not tilt out of the 3 tournaments I had left. I had been grind a 15-20 BB stack for some time in the FTP 30r, a tournament I normally don't play and ended up finishing 12th when my AcQc lost to AsQs all-in pre-flop....such a fun game I know. No worries, I was still grinding the UB bounty with about 30 people left I had just over 10 BB's and I was just reaching the final table of the 100 rebuy on which paid the top 5. I ended up crushing the 100 rebuy, taking it down for 6k with pretty much no resistance at all. I ended up getting a stack on the $ bubble of the bounty, and getting to the final table 2nd in chips. I also crushed this final table until I got heads up vs a complete moron who should probably with draw the 7,800 he got for beating me. I wasn't bitter, still +10k or so online for the night, not to mention a ton of confidence in my game that I regained that night.
I didn't have my usually bloody Sunday, and actually ended up making 2 final tables in Major events today. I took 3rd in the UB 200k for 18k, which was really disappointing but not as disappointing as taking 9th in the 200 rebuys on stars for just under 3k. I got retardedly un-lucky in that tournament and really feel like I should have at least ended up getting short handed if not winning the damn thing....oh well, fun game we play.
I'm really looking forward to the rest of the week here in Vegas. Tommorrow I'm playing the 2,500 NL, Tuesday I will likely be online if I don't make day 2 of the 2,500 as I don't care to play the 1,500 shootout and Wednesday is the 5,000 NL which is my favorite event of the series, just ahead of the 1k rebuys. thursday is a 1,500 PLO, Friday 2k NL, Saturday is another 1,500 NL circus, Sunday is a 3,000 NL which I think will end up being a pretty good tournament despite being on Sunday, and Monday is my last event for this trip the 2,500 NL short handed and of course I may play the 1,500 razz on sunday if I bust from the 3k NL event.
I feely really good about my game right now, better then I have since December probably. I was extremely focused today online and plan on having a great tournament tomorrow focusing on playing mistake free poker and switching gears when I need to. Good luck to everyone else playing in Vegas, hopefully I will have good news to report very shortly.
Monday, June 4, 2007
Quick story about MrSmokey1. He's a Chicago boy like me, yet I met him through online poker. Two years ago a bunch of us online players met for the first time at Turning Stone Casino. I headed out to Rochester, New York a week before the tournament and was staying with a friend who was to accompany me for the entire trip. One day in, I was stranded and at the end Smokey drove me 2 hours back to Rochester to catch my flight. That's good people.
Quick congrats to TheWacoKidd, cashing in his 3rd straight WPT Main Event taking 2nd place for close to 450k. I know it wasn't the title you wanted, but winning 3 of your last 4 heads-up matches live ain't too bad. Just make sure you shipped Kimberely ;-).
As for me, I haven't been able to post much the last few days. I took Thursday and Friday off, went out with my Father and Step-Mom for dinner Thursday night and my friend Robby was in town town and we went out drinking followed by the mandatory "Forest Park House Game" between us and my friend George. Let's just say we started with $5 tournament with 3 maximum rebuys of $5 the last one getting you double chips. Robby won, I didn't bother re-buying as I was lacking focus on the game, which then turned to .25-.50 NL cash and ended around 9 A.M. at 1-2 NL cash. I also took a few days to prepare for vegas, as my flight leaves tomorrow afternoon. I obviously had some errands to run but I also wanted to take a few days away from poker as I will be completely focused on poker through the next two weeks live. After last summer I look to this series as being my redemption summer, and I won't be satisfied if I don't make at least one final table giving me a shot at my first live tournament win.
All I've heard and read about is that the 1st few days of the series have been an absolute mad house, which is to be expected and why I chose to stay home for the few days. I'm not a big fan of crowds and chaos, and even once the Rio people get their shit together and run things at the ability that is expected I still feel it is all a little overwhelming for me. That's just who I am, oh well I think it's a little too late and a little less profitable to switch professions now :-P. My 1st event will be the 1k rebuys, and I'm really excited about them giving us double the starting chips this year. I figure I will budget around 8k for this event like I did last year. I've promised myself that I will be 100% focused on the WSOP this year, on and off the tables, unlike last year when I was hopping from casino to casino looking for the next tournament. No second chance tournaments for me this time.
As for blogging during the series, I'm not sure if I am going to post here as Cardplayer has asked to speak with me once I get to vegas about blogging for their site. I may end up posting in both spots but we will have to see. I will let everyone know obviously. As far as following coverage online from home this weekend, Cardplayer and pokerwire have been a mess and I actually have found the coverage of WWW.worldseriesofpoker.com, which is powered by pokernews.com to be the best by a long shot. They also provided live radio feed of the final table at http://www.worldseriesofpoker.com/bluffmedia.asx which I found to be an awesome way to follow Smokey's win, even if the broadcaster were a couple of blubbering idiots. Time to tighten up things for vegas......
Tuesday, May 29, 2007
Like most tournies for me, the mid stages were a roller coaster for me. With like 5 minutes left @ 100-200 level, I had a very good stack around 12k when everything started going crazy. 1st A_Junglen shoves 1,900 from the button w/ 56o, I make a good call in the SB w/ A6cc thinking I was likely ahead of his range and to my delight he was dominated. Turn 5 no problem. No big deal, but then the guy to his immediate right raises to 720 @ 120-240 25a on the button with 2300 behind, I shove him with QK and he instacalls with Q10o. AKx flop, turn a J and instead of 18k I had 7.5k and was a little frustrated. 2 levels later, 140-280 25a and the cut-off opened for 800 or so, A_Junglen had just been abusing the fuck out of this player and made it 2300 w/ about 5k behind. Given how weak the c/o was in general, I knew AJ's range wasnt really tight and I re-shipped from the SB w/ JJ, losing 16k pot to AJ's KK. :( I still had about 4k and went into grind mode, eventually getting to the 15k mark when we hit the 250-500 50a level with about 50 people left.
Paying 27 spots, I just started going nutts attacking the bubble with very little restraint from any of the players at the table. I was actually pretty suprised by this, but who am I to complain? With 36 left and the official bubble arriving I was sitting top 5 in chips with 40k and blinds of 600-1200 with a 150a. My favorite time in poker is a bubble in a tournament with a large ante when I have a stack, and FullTilt is the best site online for this. When we hit the money at 27, I had gone from my 40k or so w/ 36 left to over 85k and I was the chip leader. I had almost no resistance on the bubble, though I did double a guy who had about 12k with A7 vs AQ. From 27 to the final table of 9 was alot of the same and I entered the final table as the chip leader with over 200k.
Playing for such big money, the final table play was very tight and the other big stack was 2 to my left and kept re-popping the fuck out of me. He was clearly going after me, and I had decent hands but never had anything I could 4-bet him pre-flop, and every decent hand I had when we would see flops would completely miss me. I don't think he was very good necessarily but he was fortunate to have picked his spots well. I spewed my way down to about 100k with 2k-4k when I lost a very key showdown. With 6 or 7 left and the blinds 2k-4k, a shorter stack how had just lost 1/2 his chips moved all-in for 42kish 2 off the button and I had A10 in the BB. From what I had observed, this player had been pretty tight, but I also felt he had to push alot of hands from this spot and at the laast second I decided to call. He flipped K9o, 1067 flop was good for me, turn brick, river 8 :(. If I win the pot I'm over 150k, instead I had to go into grind mode with 60k or so.
Fortunately for me, with 5 left the guy to my immediate left just kept folding every time I shoved his BB. This guy was a complete nit, folded his way down to 22k @ 4k-8k blinds before picking up AK and doubling. As you could imagine, I was not thrilled to look down to 88 in the BB when this player shoved my BB for like 45k. I had him covered barely, by like 3k, and with these blinds I couldn't fold 88, but I thought I was racing at best. He ended up flipping up 66, I held and 4 handed I had about 105k, vs 3 other guys who were between 220k-300k. NP, I've been here before and I know I will have to gambol soon and I'm generally good at picking my spots to steal while chipping up my short stack. Unfortunately I shoved 74k on button w/ J8hh at 4k-8k and missed vs SB's KK on Q10xA board, out 4th for $26,325. Disappointing considering the chip lead I brought to final table no doubt, but it felt good to have my 1st 5-figure score in a tournament with a buy-in greater then $20 since January.
After I busted in FTP, I was still in UB 11pm 100nl, the 55k and stars 100nl @ 1am. I made a really poor shove pre-flop of a chronic limper w/ 88 for 22 BBs at 200-400 from the c/o with 88 and only the SB having having me covered and of course he woke up to 1010. I finished like 17th in the UB which was good enough to make the $, all be it I probably cashed for like $150 bux only. Then there was the 55k domination, which I am going to write about later because I don't feel like putting forth the effort I'd like at this time while playing. Lastly, really looking forward to the 1k Super Tuesday on stars tonight...one time be the suck out god that you are in a big buy-in on stars BeL0W.
Monday, May 28, 2007
Another awful weekend of running miserably followed closely by awful play for me. When players run bad, they often take a negative approach at the tables and are hesitant to commit chips in a hand. I do this a lot when I'm running bad. I'm very cautious putting all my chips in pre-flop, even on the flop to an extent and it leads to me leaking chips pre and post flop which is just awful poker. I'm going to try to put forth extra effort towards taking a more positive approach towards poker. I will run good today!!
Real quick congrats to Atimos for making the final table of the million on Pokerstars for the 2nd time yesterday, taking home close to 60k for his 5th place finish. He won this tournament back in November which was good for 250k. Also congratulations to Four6suited, also known as badbeatslayer, and JohnnyBax who finished 1/2 in the Full Tilt 400k guarantee last night. I think this is where I lost my chat, lol. Dana defeated Cliff heads up for her 1st win in a sunday major and 95k to go with it. Cliff earned almost 60k for his 2nd place finish, and they both played an excellent tournament, and had a tough final table to fight through that included 2 other ranked players, one who was going for his 2nd win in this tournament.
Time to win me some monies~
Saturday, May 26, 2007
So yesterday was my birthday, and last night we went out for my birthday. Jason and his girlfriend arranged for Grandma to watch Jr. and along with my roommate Mike, his girlfriend Patria and George we had a few drinks at my apartment before finally hitting Madison street about 11. When Mike and I were apartment hunting last spring one of the most attractive things about our apartment was the location. We literally walk out of our apartment and take about 10 steps and we are on Madison Street in Forest Park, which has a strip of about 15 bars in a 3 week run at our disposal where a lot of people we know from the surrounding suburbs go to hang out. It's great being able to go out and have a few drinks and not have to worry about how you will get home, and Madison street is usually pretty hopping.
This was not the case last night. Perhaps because of the memorial day weekend the usual suspects decided to go down town to party, but Madison was pretty dead and after just a couple beers at 2 different bars we found ourselves calling it a night and I was at home and in bed by 1:30 or so. I don't know why this is, but a weird thing has happened when I've attempted to sleep after a night of drinking the last 2 times out. Most who know me know I have very weird sleeping patterns, usually not falling a sleep before 6 A.M. and most nights only sleeping 5 or 6 hours. Last night I was out cold by 2 A.M. but woke up at 5 A.M. and I was not able to get back to sleep. I layed in bed for about 30 minutes before finally turning the T.V. on and flipping through the channels for a couple hours before I got back to sleep. At least I was able to get another 4 hours of sleep before having to play today, and I don't feel tired really. Last Thursday was different when I went out to the bars and got home around 1 A.M. I was a sleep by 2 A.M. and again woke up at 5 A.M. This time I wasn't able to get back to sleep until after 10 A.M. and I ended up sleeping all afternoon missing the afternoon tournaments. Lying in bed last night, I was fearing I was going to repeat this. I'm not quite sure why these almost identical situations took place, and I have only had a "weird" sleeping experience after a night of drinking 1 other time, and that was after the only time I ever drank vodka-redbulls last summer in Vegas.
Real quick I wanted to congratulate a couple of friends of mine, Cory "UGOTPZD" Carroll and Darrell "gigabet" Dicken on finishing 2nd and 3rd respectively in the Mirage WPT 10k main event. Nice job, great playing guys.
Friday, May 25, 2007
Last summer I was alot more prepared, and had rented a house in Henderson with 4 other online players. I lined up backing for any event I wanted to play and I was determined to do well. Everyday pretty much was the same thing. I would go to the Rio at noon, bust from the WSOP event, head over to bellagio for the 1k at 2, bust from that and head back to the Rio for the 500 second chance at 5, and when I busted from that go back to the Bellagio for the 1k at 7, heading home after I busted there. Over the entire Summer I managed to rack up about 90k in buy-ins, making a grand total of 2 dinner breaks, 0 day 2's and zero cashes. It wasn't that I played bad, I definitely ran awful but I could have saved alot of money in buy-ins if I didn't play all of those second chances and just focused on the series.
This year I'm taking a different approach, cutting out most of the 2nd chance tournaments and focusing on getting that bracelet. Another difference is I will not be spending 2 months straight in Las Vegas, instead making 2 trips of about 2 weeks with a 2 week break in between where I will be back home. As I type this, I'm suppose to be in Vegas in 10 days and have yet to arrange where I will stay, so I guess I combining the 1st two experiences a little bit. Worst comes to worst I will probably stay at the Gold Coast which is fairly inexpensive and right next to the Rio.
Monday was a very disappointing day of poker for me. I made the final table of the afternoon 100r, with another disappointing finish of 8th. This has been the norm for me lately, if I make a decent final table I've been racking up alot of 7th-9th place finishes. This has been really frustrating considering I'm used to making the top 3 once I make the final table at least 40% of the time, and since I won the TLB on Pokerstars in April I only have 5 final tables with 1 3rd place finish and zero wins. Eventually the frustration has to get to the player, and even the very best are rarely immune to this. This definitely showed in my tournaments Monday night as I lacked focus in every tournament, making ridiculous bluffs in every tournament and only making 1 break out of 8 tournaments I played (not including the 1st break of rebuy tournaments.)
Tuesday was a long over due day off, and I got to spend it with my family. I went over to my Mom's house and had dinner with my Mom, 2 sister's, 3 nephews, niece and my sister's friend John in celebration of my Birthday (which is actually today.) It was a fun time, but I especially enjoyed the 45 minute car ride to my Mom's house getting to sit in between Tyler (4 going on 5) and Madison (3 going on 21). You would be amazed how many different games you can play in the back seat of a mini-van with the imaginations of the youngsters. My Mom and sister helped to cook a great dinner of Steak for the adults, burgers and hot dogs for the little ones along with twice baked potatoes and some vegetable (how would I know? I don't eat veggies). It was good to see the family.
It's almost 2 years old, but Madison, Timmy, Tyler and Kyle(the baby in front) my nephews and neice showing their excellent taste in sports teams =)
PokerStars Game #10091713054: Tournament #50597390, $100+$9 Hold'em No Limit - Level XIV (1500/3000) - 2007/05/24 - 23:44:56 (ET)
Table '50597390 6' 9-max Seat #3 is the button
Seat 2: Tony_Hibbert (44992 in chips)
Seat 3: t soprano (56722 in chips)
Seat 4: hanstalstad (46280 in chips)
Seat 5: LukeFromB13 (73429 in chips)
Seat 7: SEEK_ONE (36623 in chips)
Seat 8: BeL0WaB0Ve (76500 in chips)
Seat 9: Bjorn_I_Hi (92980 in chips)
Tony_Hibbert: posts the ante 150
t soprano: posts the ante 150
hanstalstad: posts the ante 150
LukeFromB13: posts the ante 150
SEEK_ONE: posts the ante 150
BeL0WaB0Ve: posts the ante 150
Bjorn_I_Hi: posts the ante 150
hanstalstad: posts small blind 1500
LukeFromB13: posts big blind 3000
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to BeL0WaB0Ve [As Js]
BeL0WaB0Ve: raises 5750 to 8750
t soprano: folds
LukeFromB13: calls 5750
*** FLOP *** [Ts Jh 3s]
BeL0WaB0Ve: bets 11100
LukeFromB13: raises 24900 to 36000
BeL0WaB0Ve: raises 31600 to 67600 and is all-in
LukeFromB13: calls 28529 and is all-in
*** TURN *** [Ts Jh 3s] [7d]
*** RIVER *** [Ts Jh 3s 7d] [Qc]
*** SHOW DOWN ***
LukeFromB13: shows [Qs Kc] (a pair of Queens)
BeL0WaB0Ve: shows [As Js] (a pair of Jacks)
LukeFromB13 collected 149108 from pot
Bjorn_I_Hi said, "siiiiiiiiiigh"
I'm not a fan of overplaying AJ, but this is the dream flop for my hand. As soon as I start winning these pots I know the great finishes will begin to pile up. The sooner the better ;-).
The last 2 nights I haven't been blogging when done playing as I have been spending time recording videos for www.pokerxfactor.com. With the WSOP coming up, are goal is to "bank" some videos for the next few months as most of us will not have time to record with all the live play. I had 3 projects I wanted to complete and 17 days to do them. With 10 days left I have knocked out 2 of the 3, the pot-limit omaha video and the video of my pokerstars nightly 55k win, leaving just 1 more project which is a video of a $25 freeze out from pokerstars where I managed to go deep. I really enjoy making these videos and being able to give back to the poker community. Very few of us are able to just get better on our own, I couldn't begin to list how many people have helped improve my game over the last 2 years, and a lot of people don't have the benefit of having other players to discuss hands with.
Tonight we have plans to go bar hopping for my birthday. We'll start at my apartment, and more then likely end up there at the end of the night so who knows how much poker I will play on Saturday considering how much alcohol I will likely consume tomorrow night. Ugh, people over means I need to clean my room tomorrow =/.
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
World series events I’m looking forward to playing this summer.
Tue, Jun 5th
3-Day Event No-Limit Hold’em w/Re-Buys (Event 8)
Structure Sheet $1,000
Wed, Jun 6th
3-Day Event No-Limit Hold’em (Event 10)
Structure Sheet $2,000
Thu, Jun 7th
3-Day Event No-Limit Hold’em / Six Handed (Event 12)
Structure Sheet $1,500
Fri, Jun 8th
3-Day Event World Championship Pot Limit Hold'em (Event 13)
Structure Sheet $5,000
Sat, Jun 9th
3-Day Event No-Limit Hold’em (Event 15)
Structure Sheet $1,500
Mon, Jun 11th
3-Day Event No-Limit Hold’em (Event 19)
Structure Sheet $2,500
Wed, Jun 13th
3-Day Event No-Limit Hold’em (Event 22)
Structure Sheet $5,000
Thu, Jun 14th
2-Day Event Pot Limit Omaha (Event 23)
Structure Sheet $1,500
Fri, Jun 15th
3-Day Event No-Limit Hold’em (Event 25)
Structure Sheet $2,000
Sat, Jun 16th
3-Day Event No-Limit Hold’em (Event 27)
Structure Sheet $1,500
Sun, Jun 17th
3-Day Event No-Limit Hold’em (Event 28)
Structure Sheet $3,000
Sun, Jun 17th
2-Day Event Seven Card Razz (Event 29)
Structure Sheet $1,500
Mon, Jun 18th
3-Day Event No-Limit Hold'em / Six Handed (Event 30)
Structure Sheet $2,500
Head home for 2 weeks, my best friend George is getting married the last weekend in June.
Back for main a couple days early to play 2nd 1k rebuy
Mon, Jul 2nd
3-Day Event No-Limit Hold’em w/Re-Buys (Event 52)
Structure Sheet $1,000
July 3rd-5th play the bellagio cup 2,500, 5,000, 5,000
Focus on main Event starting on day 1B or 1C the 7th or 8th
Bellagio Cup main event starting July 10th or July 11th if I’m not still in main event (so this event is highly doubtful)
Monday, May 21, 2007
This was originally gonna just be about Sorel, but man is Jared "TheWacoKidd" Hamby almost equally as sick. In the last 2 months Jared has won 3 live tournaments, taking down the $2,500 pre-lim at the bellagio WPT championship which was followed days later by a win in the $2,000 pre-lim during the same serious for over 500k combined. He then went on to cash in one of the toughest live events ever, the 25k WPT Championship Main event. That wasn't enough for him so he decided to take down the $1,000 Pre-lim at the Mirage WPT for another 100k. Today he will be starting day 3 of the 10k main event at the Mirage, down to 40 people and 13 away from his 2nd consecutive cash in a WPT Main Event on his journey to the 1 million dollar 1st place prize. Not to mention his 3 final tables last week in the Poker Stars 100 rebuys, where he had a 5th, took a night off from domination then finished back to back nights 1st and 2nd. The 3 scores combined were worth close to 50k.....sick!
Growing Pains. Every poker player has to deal with them, unless of course your name is Imper1um. From the 1st moment I saw him railing me in a FullTilt tournament, I thought Sn8wman was just another crazy railbird. Gboro780 told me from day1 I was wrong, and I will be the 1st to admit that I was. Brian is a young 18 year old is a dedicated student of the game who has been constantly picking the brains of any top player who was willing to talk to him. His results since I first saw him on my rail have reflected this dedication he has for this game, as he has been doing well in alot of the biggest and toughest tournaments on the net. It's pretty safe to say he hates poker today, at least I would if I were him.
Sn8wman had 2 great finishes yesterday, finishing 5th in the Pokerstars 200k 2nd chance for over 12k, and Final tabling the biggest tournament of the day taking 9th place in the FTOPS main event for 25k. With about 20 people left, he was 3rd in chips with about 2.5 million. A little perspective on his situation, when they would hit the final table the average stack of the remaining 9 players would be just a shade over 2 million. I remember feeling what he was probably experiencing at this point. The excitement, the nerves, the pressure of not making that one crucial mistake and "choking" at what might be your best chance ever at a 6-figure score online. Even for the greatest players, with the size of the fields these days the opportunity to take down an event such as this one or the Pokerstars Sunday Million maybe a once in a life time opportunity.
I remember when I had my chance. It was the last Sunday of February in 2006 on Party Poker during their monthly 750k guarantee with a 350+28 buy-in. I'm not positive on the exact payouts, but I remember cashing for roughly 70k when I finished 3rd, so I'd imagine the top 3 spots were 1st- 200kish, 2nd-100kish, 3rd-70k. I remember the natural nervousness I felt. I did however have 2 things going for me. First, the fact that 4 months before I had my "introduction" to real pressure when I made the final table of the Paradise 150k guarantee. I passed that test with flying colors, winning the tournament for just under 30k. The prize pool was nothing compared to this party tournament, but I remember the final table was stacked with great players including Roothlus and JohnnyBax amongst others. I should have busted very early at this final table, but fortunately JohnnyBax is a great player and made a standard fold pre-flop for great players. I dont remember the exact situation, but we were 8-10 handed and it was the typical Paradise push fest. The blinds were like 4k-8k, and the chip leader who was opening alot made a standard raise to like 22k, and I shoved like 150k all-in with AQ. At the time, I didn't know Bax except from playing with him on stars and we had yet to become the close friends we are today. In the SB Bax tanked forever, having a decent stack which was in between mine and the CL's and eventually folded AK. CL called with KK, I hit my ace which would have been out-kicked if Bax called too and went on to win the tourney.
The second thing I had going for me was the support group I had around me. With about 60 left my messengers were nutts with friends excited for my opportunity. I'd say I had about 20+ friends messaging me, but I remember specifically responding to only 3 or 4 players who were major factors in keeping me calm. The others I would respond when I had a chance but didn't take an urgency to it. I remember specifically wanting to play perfect poker and not make any mistakes once we were down to 100 people or so since I had a pretty good stack. One specific example of this was from 100 people left until we were down to 6 or 7 I remember folding AQ EVERYTIME someone had open raised ahead of me, even when the raise was from late position. It was the one hand I didn't want to lose my tourney with. Then finally with 6 or 7 left at the final table, I was one of the shorter stacks when a slightly shorter stack moved all-in from the c/o or button in what was pretty much an any 2 shove for him and I re-shoved from either the button or small blind (I remember there was at least 1 if not 2 players behind me), knowing that if I lost the pot I would almost certainly be the next one eliminated. The other guy was live with something like K7 and I held with Ace High. I ended up busting 3rd after I went from chip leader to crippled when I shoved KJs vs the 2nd stacks 88 and lost a race. When I made the push, the blinds were 50k-100k, and the original raiser had like 1.8m when he 3x'd, I had 2.2m ish and the short stack had 900k. Pretty standard play considering the stacks and the pay jumps.
OK, back to Sn8wman. Here Brian is with a most excellent shot at 336k for 1st (more then most people make in 10 years of working for the man) and having already locked up 9.5k with 2 tables left. I imagine his nerves must have been at his highest level ever while playing poker at least. I was talking to gboro on messenger who was helping keep him calm in such an intense moment. Brian asked gboro for my messenger and Brian and I began talking. At this point Brian had lost some pots and had gone from his peak of 2.5millionish to about 1.6m, but he was still in awesome shape with the blinds only being 25k-50k and this being the greatest structure ever online in my opinion. My intentions were not to try and help him in any hands but to try and provide a calming influence as others had for me. I asked him how many people he was talking to on messenger, as too many voices is never a good thing. To my surprise he was only talking to 1 other person besides gboro, martine23. Thats a pretty excellent duo over poker intelligance if you ask me, as they both play near perfect poker. He had been opening pots to 150k, standard 3x the BB and was getting re-poped alot. I told him I wanted to only give him 1 tip and that was to decrease the size of his raise to between 115k-130k as they have the same effect as 150k and when you get re-popped you save 25-35k if you end up deciding to fold.
Anyways, everything was going wrong for Brian and he was soon down to about 900k after getting re-popped pre-flop and losing a confrontation in a battle of the blinds vs a very tough opponent who was in the SB. Lucky for him the break was just in time, but he was in a somewhat panic mode, insisting he had to get off messenger and focus on getting this done. I tried to calm him for the 5 minutes he had on break and offered him one last tip. With blinds being 30k-60k, he had that awkward 15 BB stack that is tough to play. I told him to tighten up on opening pots instead looking for good oppurtunities to move his stack in vs someone else who opened a pot. This is definitely the best way to play a 15 BB stack when the other players have a similar stack to yours or a 20-25 BBs stack. With that I wish him luck and he signs off.
So now there were somewhere in the area of 12 people left when it folded to Sn8wman in the small blind and he just completed. The BB had about 1.1m barely having him covered raised to 200k total, 140k wore which brian called. At this point gboro and I both thought Brian had AA and were shocked at what ensued on the flop. On a flop of 974 and roughly 430k in pot, Brian checked to the BB who bet 540k and Brian let his natural instincts take over and instantly moved in for about 700k total with Q9o and the BB called exposing he was on a complete move pre-flop with his 75o. The turn was a 5 and the chat spam went nutts for Q's and 9's on the river which never appeared. The river was a 4....oh yea, the board was now 97454 counterfeiting the BB's 2 pair and shipping Brian the nearly a 2 million chip pot!!
So now the blinds are 30k-60k and there are 10 left with 9 making the final table. It folded to the SB who made it 3x and Sn8wman called from the BB with Q10dd. The flop was KK8 with 1 diamond. in the previous blind vs blind confrontation earlier the villian raised 3x pre, and led 3x on A72flop w/ 2 diamonds which Sn8wman called holding QJ of spades. The SB check the turn and Brian bet 6x BB and folded when the SB moved in on him. So back to the hand at matter, the flop came KK8 with 1 diamond and both players checked. The turn was a rag diamond, 3 or 4 or something and the SB lead for 250k with about 1 million behind. Meanwhile another player had busted at the other table so the next hand would start the final table. Sn8man has 2 options when the SB leads 250k on turn. He can call and have 1.5 million when the action continues on the river, folding to any bet if he doesn't improve his hand and still in decent shape to start the final table. This play is a little weak/conservative at this point, but definitely not "wrong". Option two is simple. With almost 700k in the pot after the SB's bet and having the villain covered by 500kish, ship your stack in there and put him to the decision of calling off his last 1 million chips knowing that the final 9 is set if he folds. If the SB does call, and he needs a big hand to do that, you still have outs and also have him covered by a few chips...in NLH aggression OWNS. Unfortunately the villain called w/ AK, Sn8wman missed his flush draw and ended up pushing King hi in the SB vs the BB the 1st hand of the FT, who called with a better king high and Brian was eliminated in 9th taking home 25k.
While it wasn't the 335k he had hoped for 25k was still a nice score. Most of us know this, but I'm sure it will take him a few days to realize himself as I imagine he's feeling disappointment and second guessing a few of his plays late instead of feeling the pride of the accomplishment of finishing 9th out of 3,798 participants in one of the largest tournaments ever played online. In my opinion he should take pride in knowing that he played the Q10dd the way 90% of the top players would in the same exact situation, and this is just one of the many growing pains poker players go through in their journey towards greatness.
Sunday, May 20, 2007
12:45- 200+15 Sunday Warm-up on Pokerstars, 350k guarantee and 100k added*
13:00- 100+9 NLHE on Pokerstars
13:00- 100+9 NLHE on Bodog, with a 50k guarantee
14:00- 100+9 w/ rebuys on Pokerstars*
15:00- 50+5 NLHE on Pokerstars, with a 25k guarantee
16:00- 100+9 NLHE on Bodog, with a 100k guarantee*
16:30- 200+15 Sunday Million on Pokerstars, 250k added*
17:00- 200+15 on Ultimate Bet with a 200k guarantee*
17:15- 200+15 NL Heads-Up Matches on pokerstars, 256 max entrants
18:00- 500+35 FTOPS Main event on fulltilt, 1.5 million guarantee*
18:00- 615+35 WSOP Main event qualifier on Pokerstars
18:30- 200+15 second chance on Pokerstars w/ 200k guarantee*
19:00- 100+9 double stack on Pokerstars
19:05- 200+16 Mulligan (FTP's version of second chance), 75k guarantee*
19:30- 100+9 w/ rebuys on Pokerstars*
20:00- 150+13 NL on FullTilt w/40k guarantee
20:00- 150+12 NL on Absolute w/ 60k guarantee
20:30- 500+30 NL on Ultimate Bet w/75k guarantee
20:30- 50+5 NL on bodog with 50k guarantee (alternate for me)
20:30- 100+9 w/ rebuys on Ultimate Bet w/ a 20k guarantee (alternate for me)
21:00- 200+15 w/ rebuys on Pokerstars w/ a 100k guarantee*
21:00- 20+2 w/ rebuys on pokerstars
21:00- 200+16 World Series Main Event Qualifier on Fulltilt, 2 seats guaranteed (alt for me)
* indicates a qualifying tournament for Cardplayer's Internet Player of the year standings
Basic qualifications for CP's IPOY is 100 entrants or more, Buy-in of 100 or more, and Prize Pool of 100k of more. The sites that qualify are Pokerstars, FullTilt, UltimateBet, AbsolutePoker, and Bodog. I personally think this is a little too narrow, and I feel the minimum buy-in should be 50 and prize pool 50k. I feel like CP has the narrow qualifications to make their data mining easier on their end. As it stands, Monday thru Friday during a normal week, the only tournament across these 5 sites that everyday is the pokerstars 21:00 nightly 100k guarantee (150k guar on Wednesdays). On very freak nights, the evening 100 rebuy on pokerstars will qualify, but this is very rare. The only other weekday tournament that qualifies is the Fulltilt Monday night 1k NLH which has a 50k guarantee but regularly approaches and exceeds a prize pool of 200k. They mine as well call this Cardplayer's Yearly Internet Player of Weekend. My feelings aren't directly related to my poor standings, which some may think.
Here is a link to the current rules-
Here is a link to the current standings-
Here is a link to my current standing-
Under the current qualifications, here are the typical tournaments that qualify each week.
Bodog- 1 total tournament
Bodog- Sunday 16:00 100+9 w/ 100k guarantee
UltimateBet- 1 total tournament
UltimateBet- Sunday 17:00 200+15 w/ 200k guarantee
Absolute- 1 total tournament
Absolute- Saturday 16:30 200+16 w/ 150k guarantee
Fulltilt- 3 total tournaments
Fulltilt- Monday 21:00 1k NL, Sunday 18:00 200+16 with 400k guarantee (1 sunday a month this is a 500+35 w/ 750k guarantee), Sunday 19:05 200+16 with 75k guarantee (this has been meeting the qualifications in the last few weeks so I will give it the benefit)
Pokerstars- 12 total tournaments
Pokerstars- Monday thru Saturday 21:00 150+12 w/ 100k guarantee (wednesdays is 300+20 and 150k guarantee), Sunday- 12:45 200+15 sunday warm-up w/ 350k guar, 14:00 100+9 w/ rebuys, 16:30 200+15 Sunday Million, 18:30 200+15 second chance w/ a 200k guar, 19:30 100+9 w/ rebuys, 21:00 200+15 w/ rebuys w/ 100k guar
So under the current qualifications, there are 18 tournaments a week over the 5 sites. 3 of the sites only have 1 tournament, and I understand pokerstars is the largest site open to the entire world but they dominate this holding 12 of the 18 tournaments, which with such a small sample 67% is a huge percentage.
Total weekday entries-6
Total weekend entries-12
The following tournaments would also qualify under the 50 buy-in/50k prizepool.
Bodog- Tuesday, Wednesday and Sunday 20:30 50nl with 50k guarantee, Sunday 13:00 100nl w/ 50k guarantee.
Bodog total- 4 added, with the initial 1 that qualified for a total of 5.
Absolute- Sunday 20:00 150+12 w/ 60k guarantee
Absolute total- 1 added, with intial 1 that qualified for a total of 2.
UltimateBet- Sunday 20:30 500+30nl w/ 75k guarantee
UltimateBet total- 1 added, with intial 1 that qualified for a total of 2. There is a slight hope that the nightly 20:30 100+9 w/ rebuys w/ 20k guarantee will eventually qualify if UB ever figures out how to get players on their site, as this is a great structure for a rebuy tourney.
Fulltilt- Mon-Sun 20:00 150+13 w/ 40k guarantee. This usually hits 50k everynight, but we'll estimate a conservative 5 times out of 7 per week. Saturday 15:00 300+22 6-handed NLHE w 40k guarantee. Saturday 18:00 100+9 with 50k guarantee.
FullTilt total- 7 added, with initial 3 that qualified a conservative total of 10 (remember we allowed for 2 of 7 nightly 150+13's to not hit the 50k qualification.
Pokerstars- Mon-Sat 14:00 & 20:00 100+9 w/ rebuys. Mon-Sun 15:00 50+5 which starting Monday will be known as the "daily fifty grand", as pokerstars increased it's guarentee from 25k to 50k. Saturday 13:00 300+20 nl. Sunday 19:00 100+9 double stack, this has been regularly getting 500+ runners. Occasionally a 50 rebuy will qualify, but we wont count any of them since it is not a regular occurence.
Pokerstars total- 21 added to original 12 for a total of 33.
Overall break down- 100/100- 18 tournaments a week, 50/50- 52 tournaments a week, with pokerstars still holding a dominant 63% of the total entries.
Weekday entries- 27 entries
Weekend entries- 25 entries
(i double check math later, trying to rush and finish the post)
After running the numbers, maybe an average of just over 7 tournaments a day is a tad high, although I think an average of 2.5 is way to low and I think there needs to be a better between weekday and weekend tournaments. Perhaps they could come up with a system that "specific tournaments" qualified, like UB's largest daily the 20:00 120+9 bounty with 30k prize pool and maybe just the 20:00 100+9 w/ rebuys on stars instead of both daily 100+9 w/ rebuys to try and create a little more balance between sites. I'm no expert, but the current system blows in my honest opinion, especially considering how fortunate one needs to get in the majors.
So far, I've busted everything, and in pretty ugly fashion. Hopefully this will allow me to better focus on the million, which is 30 minutes in. With 10,894 runners and the 250k Pokerstars added out of their pocket, we have a $2,428,800 prizepool, which is certainly the largest prize pool ever for the 200+15 Sunday Million, and may have surpassed the largest field when a few sundays ago they put a 1.5 mill guarantee celebrating something or other. That being said, the payouts suck.
Spots paid: 2,619
Total Prizepool: $2,428,800
1,504th-2,619th(the bottom level)- 242.88
1st place: $229,764.48- nothin to sniff at, but only 9.46% of entire prize pool. I believe normally when they get their average 6k runners or so 1st takes home 15% of the prize pool, which would mean $364,4320. Of course when the number of players increases their pay out change, but their standard payouts for this many runners is 1,314 spots paid, with 1st collecting 12.8% which would be $310,886.40 for the winner. I'm all for paying extra spots, I understand the theorey from the sites, but I think paying 20% is plenty which would be about 2,179 spots and add $106,867.20 (4.4%) to the prize pool towards the higher spots.
Yesterday I forgot to send out a big congrats to TheFatFish A.K.A AndyMcleod for winning FTOPS event #9 the 100 rebuys and pocketing 75k. Also congrats to Imper1um on winning event #8 Friday night, the 200+16 Pot-Limit Holdem event, and pocketing 40k for his efforts.
A big good luck to Jared "TheWacoKidd" Hamby, J.C. "PartyPsux" Alvarado, Jon Friedberg, Corey "UGOTPZD" Caroll, Darrell "gigabet" Dicken, Eric Froehlich and Shaniac on day 2 today of the WPT Mirage 10k event.
In great shape 5 levels into the mil so far with 27,950 up from my original 10,000, but tis a marathon, WML. I'll leave ya with a sick hand I played in the million, the last hand before the 1st break.
PokerStars Game #10018468329: Tournament #50186235, $200+$15 Hold'em No Limit - Level IV (150/300) - 2007/05/20 - 17:28:10 (ET)
Table '50186235 988' 9-max Seat #5 is the button
Seat 1: trdr55 (11275 in chips)
Seat 2: yokkamo (6225 in chips)
Seat 3: BeL0WaB0Ve (19450 in chips)
Seat 4: eres chingon (16400 in chips)
Seat 5: BADBEATGMJR (9300 in chips)
Seat 6: fruktmusli (17950 in chips)
Seat 7: desiree777 (12175 in chips)
Seat 8: crimpster (8550 in chips)
Seat 9: dunkmaster50 (8200 in chips)
fruktmusli: posts small blind 150
desiree777: posts big blind 300
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to BeL0WaB0Ve [8h 9h]
BeL0WaB0Ve: raises 550 to 850
eres chingon: folds
BADBEATGMJR: raises 950 to 1800
BeL0WaB0Ve: calls 950
*** FLOP *** [Jc 6s 5h]
BeL0WaB0Ve: bets 900
BADBEATGMJR: raises 900 to 1800
BeL0WaB0Ve: calls 900
*** TURN *** [Jc 6s 5h] [2c]
BeL0WaB0Ve: bets 300
BADBEATGMJR: raises 900 to 1200
BeL0WaB0Ve: calls 900
*** RIVER *** [Jc 6s 5h 2c] [Th]
BeL0WaB0Ve: bets 2950
BeL0WaB0Ve collected 10050 from pot
BeL0WaB0Ve: shows [8h 9h] (high card Jack)
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 10050 | Rake 0
Board [Jc 6s 5h 2c Th]
Seat 1: trdr55 folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 2: yokkamo folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 3: BeL0WaB0Ve collected (10050)
Seat 4: eres chingon folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 5: BADBEATGMJR (button) folded on the River
Seat 6: fruktmusli (small blind) folded before Flop
Seat 7: desiree777 (big blind) folded before Flop
Seat 8: crimpster folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 9: dunkmaster50 folded before Flop (didn't bet)
All day I was playing some sick poker. On full tilt I was the bubble boy in the 300 short handed, as my QQ was no match for the eventual winner's AJ aipf. I also managed to go deep in the 100r ftops event, where I finished 32nd out of 1,487 runners. Another BLAH!! Seeing as I have such great luck in these big rebuy events during the series, no one at my table rebought, perfect! :( I tried to loosen them up with some stupid all-ins, and when i finally got called my AK was no match for K4 suited =). With no one at the table willing to be an idiot with me, I just started getting really aggressive pre-flop, opening for 300-400 and taking it on the flop. I got to the 1st break w/ 16k or so. Was my usual up and down performance early, but I had about 30k at the 1200-2400 level, when the average was about 50k or so with 125 people left. I pretty much grinded the whole tourney, never having more then 70k, and never having more then 1/2 the average stack. Was down to 20k @ 3k-6k, when I could grind no longer and moved in with A6 and failed to improve vs 99. BLah BLah BLah whatever.
I'm feeling good going into another Sunday. Here's to making it a special Sunday and not the usual I hate Sundays, where's your gun?
Friday, May 18, 2007
The UB bounty was simple pickings in the beginning, as I gathered 8.5k during the 1st hour. Tho I swang a bit, I was never really in any danger, and the only time I was all-in before there was 12 left was when I flopped top set vs a flush draw with about 25 people left. On the final table bubble, the button who had 45kish, made it 5500 or so at 1k-2k blinds. I had the perfect re-stealing stack, and moved all-in from the BB with 44 for about 30k. Whoops, he had KK, and I'm out 11th. Oh well.
Both the 22k and 40k on FTP started very similar. Alot of folding during the 1st hour with me putting very few chips in the pot, and having around 2.5k of the starting 3k at the 1st break. In both tournaments I picked up alot of cards during the 2nd hour and managed to get to around 15k at the 2nd break. The 22k was a steady ride to the final table where I eventually finished 4th. I didn't lose many significant pots, when 5 handed and the blinds 6k-12k, utg+1 shoved my BB for 130k w/ KJhh, I obv called with AA and lost a race on the river. I tried to grind, as my cards were very ugly. I eventually shoved 85k w/ K8o 4-handed and was called by A7o, live to the river but I missed :(, taking 4th for 2.5k.
The 40k I found myself with a monster stack right after the 2nd break after I played a very sick hand. I'm not sure how this will look when I paste it, but I'll try it anyways since I saved the hand. Towards the end of the 2nd hour, as I was amassing this large stack, I was opening up some more but I was also getting some hands. So it's reasonable to say I may have had my usual loose image. So pre-flop, I limp behind utg limper with small PP, and bet the flop when checked to me, just under 3x BB. UTG calls, turn brings straight draw, and utg again check/calls, this time my 1/2 pot bet. The river pairs the board, and I was shocked utg didn't lead. I really wasnt sure where he was at, but figured if he rivered trips he's calling, if he had the straight he was calling, and he may even call if he limped JJ-1010 or AA. So I said screw it and decided to go for the massive over shove of almost 3x the pot which he called pretty quickly, I was shocked at his holdings.......
Full Tilt Poker Game #2456793747: $40 000 Guarantee (18164261) Table 21 - 120/240 Ante 25 - No Limit Hold'em - 22:21:13 ET - 2007/05/18
Seat 1: min33 (4 025)
Seat 2: blindumpire (5 405)
Seat 3: Matadoren (4 565)
Seat 4: TheStein (10 665)
Seat 5: Andre Pierre (16 040)
Seat 6: SirWatts (8 405)
Seat 7: GetPWN3D (16 510)
Seat 8: phat_cat1 (7 495)
Seat 9: drome (3 740)
min33 antes 25
blindumpire antes 25
Matadoren antes 25
TheStein antes 25
Andre Pierre antes 25
SirWatts antes 25
GetPWN3D antes 25
phat_cat1 antes 25
drome antes 25
Matadoren posts the small blind of 120
TheStein posts the big blind of 240
The button is in seat #2
Dealt to GetPWN3D [ ]
Andre Pierre calls 240
GetPWN3D calls 240
Matadoren calls 120
Andre Pierre checks
GetPWN3D bets 645
Andre Pierre calls 645
[ ] [ ]
Andre Pierre checks
GetPWN3D bets 1,200
Andre Pierre calls 1,200
[ ] [ ]
Andre Pierre checks
GetPWN3D has 15 seconds left to act
GetPWN3D bets 14 400 and is all in
Andre Pierre has 15 seconds left to act
Andre Pierre calls 13 930 and is all in
Uncalled bet of 470 returned to GetPWN3D
GetPWN3D shows [ ] (a full house, Fours full of Queens)
Andre Pierre mucks
GetPWN3D wins the pot (32,735) with a full house, Fours full of Queens
Andre Pierre stands up
Total pot 32,735 | Rake 0
Seat 1: min33 folded before the Flop
Seat 2: blindumpire (button) folded before the Flop
Seat 3: Matadoren (small blind) folded on the Flop
Seat 4: TheStein (big blind) folded on the Flop
Seat 5: Andre Pierre mucked [ ] - two pair Queens and Nines
Seat 6: SirWatts folded before the Flop
Seat 7: GetPWN3D showed [ ] and won (32 735) with a full house Fours full of Queens
Seat 8: phat_cat1 folded before the Flop
Seat 9: drome folded before the Flop
This put me at 35k, which I pretty much rode to the final 2 tables, not getting many hands. With 1500-3k blinds, given the huge antes on FTP, I shoved my 58k in the sb when folded to me, and the BB woke up to KK...my 67o was no good and I was down to 22k. Folded to me on the button and I had a standard shove with A9o, and the same guy wakes up to QQ, nh gg gl etc etc.
This week I fell to #11 of the rankings on www.pocketfives.com. On 4-11-06, I moved from #11 to #6 in the rankings. In October of '06, I was ranked #4 in the old system, when pocketfives switched to the new system, which is more results based. I debuted in that system at #3, and eventually held the #1 spot for about 2 months maybe. Since the 1st of the year I have been traveling alot playing live, and along with some sick performances by others I have been steadily dropping. Still, the approximate 57 consecutive weeks I spent in the top 10, adjusting to a brand new system with a new criteria, not to mention having to fight off so many great players worthy of such high rankings is definitely one of my proudest achievements in this game to date. With all the insane PLB totals, and the 4 weeks I'll be in vegas this summer, it's going to be really difficult but I plan on reclaiming my spot in the top 10 very soon. Overall I'm really happy with my game, and looking forward to a big weekend. I'm going to do my best to run good when it counts ;-).