Wednesday, July 26, 2006

WSOP day 1; battle of the babes by Texter

So far I've had two good beats, the airport didn't lose my luggage and the line for taxis was real short. Unfortunately, we've had two bad beats...our interview with Isabelle Mercier got postponed; PokerStars had to move their courtesy suite due to some dental convention plus our interview with Joe Sebok and Gavin Smith got postponed as well!

On my way to the Rio from the incredibly crappy Gold Coast (it's right across Flamingo from the Rio) I heard more bad beat stories in 10 minutes than an entire year online. Also, who do these hotels think their kidding...not washing towels for the environment...yeah right.

The World Series is even crazier than last year, all the big poker rooms have suites with free food, free drinks and free crap. The dichotomy of hospitality babes is pretty interesting. The Full-Tilt babes are all italian with big boobs, the ultimatebet babes are all paris hilton clones, the doyle's rooms girls are all country style with cowboy hats and shorts and the bodog babes are so busty the hindenberug is jealous.

The suites are all pretty swank...but the bodog and full tilt ones take first prize, there are leather sofas and an open bar. The bodog one looks like a fancy nightclub but it's harder to get a drink there.

The bathroom situation is infinitely better with port-o-johns out the back of the Rio next to the milwaukees best tent....a guy is telling his bad beat story as I type...his AK suited lost to a straight on the river (welcome to vegas).

To all you guys I promised some free poker shirts and stuff...they're on the way...they are giving away all kinds of crap. We're headed out to the "Naked Poker" party at the Rio in a couple hours.

I'll see you tomorrow for Day #2.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

My WSOP Venture Final Blog by Discopimp

Well alright we left off at break....When i got back to my table, this is where things began to get interesting.....I was semi shortstack, but not too far down, but definetly not up....Now remeber how i told you the guy to my right, we would have many battles....Well everytime he was on the button, he would raise me out of my small bilnd....Whenever i was big blind, he would raise me out since he was in small blind...And i am not lying when I tell you, my best hand the whole time he was doing it, was 93 offsuit...But eventually Imma get him!! So i started losing quite a bit of money since he kept stealin my blinds, and we started to have to ante up......Now a few hands pass, and I look down and see AQ....Now its time to decide if i need to go all in now or wait....The bald dude across from me raises....One guy calls, and now i know its time to move all in, if no one calls i get take a nice lil pot, and if someone calls i have a decent hand....Now one of the larger stacks behind me says "Reraise, Im all in!"....First thought in my head was like oh shit, im in deep trouble...First guy raises, I reraise all in, and he reraises all in, hes at least got maybe KK, AA....So I start sweatin til everyone decides to fold, and its just me and him....He flips over.....JJ.....My first thought was SWEET! I can easily fight this, I thought for sure I was in deep water....So flop comes QQ4....LOL! I knew i could fight it, but that shit is too funny....No cards improve him, and I double up, PHEW!
A few hands later, the bald dude raises again, and some guy reraises all in...I look down and see KK on the button....So announce reraise, Im all in....The bald dude, seemed upset, and mucks his hand...The other guy who went all in flips over QQ, and I flip over my KK....Board brings him no help, and I eliminate my second player of the tourney....I had a nice size stack now, somewhere around 9 or 10,000...but with blinds and antes high, no stack was safe....Ok I look down at 44....Blinds are high, so i decide just to call...a few other guys just call....Flop come A94 two diamonds...I flop a set of 4's...small blind, big blind check...Once again the guy to my right bets out 500....With the two diamonds on board I decide to raise....i raise to 1500...The guy to my right thinks for awhile and calls....Turn comes 8 of diamonds....He checks, and I decide to bet at it.....I bet 2,000....And he immediately moves all in.,...FUCK....He caught his fuckin flush....I shoulda moved all in on flop.....I seemed noticeably upset, and end up folding my set....I know, some of you say how can you fold that, but I had to...I didnt wanna get knocked out knowing he had flush, and I called anyway....A few hands later he leans over to me and says "Hey I had 99, I flopped a set on the flop" OH SHIT!!! Was i fuckin lucky, we flopped set over set...I coulda and shoulda gone broke that hand....PHEW....But the result of that hand did make me go back down to a mediocre stack......After a quite bit more hands, I didnt play many hands, and went into dinner break kinda low....
As we walk to dinner I talk about my play with my friends, and girlfriend...As we are standing in line ordering our food, and look over my shoulder, and I see Shannon Elizabeth....Daaaaaaayum girl, you're fine! I did however think she was much taller....I think she was only a inch or two taller than me, and Im about 5'8 or 5'9......Ok well anyways, my back was really hurting, and i was just tryin to stretch out, before we had to go back and sit....So dinner break comes to an end, and we sit back down....Antes are up to 50, and blinds i think were 400, 800...So i had no time to fuck around...A few hands pass, and Im runnin kinda low on chips....Im small blind....Once again the guy to my right always raises on the button....I look down and see AJ, so Im like alright damn it, Imma get you this time....So i reraise all in....big blind folds, and it goes back to the guy on my right...And hes kinda sighs, and in my head i was like "lol, i got ya!"....Then the moment i thought that he says "I call".....He flips over AK.....FUCK! Board comes and gives me no help....I get eliminated.....God damn it, I should not have moved all in....the rest of the day I was sooooooooooo upset at myself for making that move...Ask my girlfriend I never stopped bitchin about it...I was soooo mad at myself, we still had 4 days left in Vegas, and not one day did I sit at a poker table....Thats how upset I was....Maybe Im makin a big deal about it...But I think I made the wrong move, and I still havent forgave myself for it....I dunno, what you guys think.....Who knows...Overall I thought I played well, and relied on strong play and good reads...Who knows, maybe next year, Ill get another shot!!! I guess my unofficial result was like 540th out of 2,891 players!

Friday, July 21, 2006

My WSOP Venture Part 2 by Discopimp

Ok we left off at first break....Field was sooooo huge we had to take break in two different sets, half the field first, then the other half....Naturally, I get the second half break....So we play for 20 minutes while the other half is on break...During then i received only one decent hand....I look down at JJ, i raise...And here is where decisions are made...A man directly across from me kinda sit up quickly and awkwardly, and reraises all in....Everyone folds to me, and I automatically had one of those feelings...Remember I had just lost that huge hand with the set of JJ's, so I was at about 875 or so....Normally I would move all in shortstacked...Until I decided it wasnt time, I flipped over JJ, and told him I fold....He pats the table and flips over AA.....I took a huge breath and realized i just dodged elimination....It was finally our turn at break...I met up with Steve and he told me he was at about 1775....I told him i was somewhere around 675 or 775, really wasnt too sure...He gave me so ensuring words, but I assured him, Im still in good shape...
Breaks Ends....We make our way back....I began playin tight, just pickin my spots...Blinds were 25-50 I believe....A new guy at our table sits, and raises with his first hand...I look down at A9 of diamonds...Normally I fold, but for some reason I thought I might get a good flop...I move all in...Everyone folds to him, and he says the dreaded words "I guess I'm way behind, but I'll call"...Last thing I want is losing to some retarded hand....I flip over my A9 suited....He flips over.........A9 offsuit! LOL....We chop, oh well, at least I didnt lose.....Another man joins the table a few hands later....He was small blind I was big blind....Everyone folds to the blinds, he raises to 125...I look down and see Q10....He only raised 75 on top of my 50 i already put in, so I called....flop came Q73....He checks, and I bet 300, a lil more than half my stack I had left...He thinks for a good while...And he reraises about 400 more, and I move all in for what I had left, and he then slams the table...He flips over JJ....Turn and river bring him no help, and I doubled up!
A few hands later, that guy busted out....A few hands later im big blind and look down at 88, the guy under the gun goes all in for about 300...It folds all the way around to me and I feel I have no choice but to call...He flips over AJ...Sweet lil race situation...Board comes 10 high, and I bust out my first player....Like a hand or so later, a guy raises, and Im on the button, and I look down at KK....It comes to me, and i pause for a second, and reraise all in! He automatically calls me and flips over QQ....PHEW..Im in good shape, board brings him no help, and I double up again...Im around 2500 now....A few hands later the Floor man walks over and tells us hes breakin our table, and to draw cards, so we can move....
Now we left off where I got moved to a new table....I sit and down, and dayum, did I get moved to the worng table...Everyone around me has a huge stack, i had about around 3000 maybe more....So I first sit down, and get a nice run of cards, raisin, people folding....Then I get pocket 88's under the gun, so i decide not to raise, and just call....The guy on the button raises, and it folds to me....I automatically think, two over cards! So i say "I call.......I check in da dark!" He sits up, and is like "Excuse Me? Did you say check in da dark?"...I was like yup....My plan is, if flop comes low, and he bets, Im all in! Flop comes 10 4 2....Im like here we go....The guy grabs his chips, stacks up a few....and then checks....I was like damn it! Now if an over card comes, Im screwed....SO I say I check in da dark again! He puts his head down....Turn comes a 7......Once again, hes stacks up some chips.....and checks.....I say "I check in the dark again!" River comes a 4......He grins, and flips over AK....I flip over my 88 and win the hand.....
A few hands pass, and i steal few pots here and there.....I come across 88 again in the big blind....It folds all the way to button, and the guy just calls...The guy next to me (small blind) calls as well....I raise and button thinks for awhile and fold, but small blind calls....The flop comes J73....Small blind checks, I check.....The turn comes 4....He comes out and bets 1200 right away....I think to myself that if he had that J he would bet out right away....So I immediately call! River comes a 7.....He checks, and I flip over my 88, and he mucks! That was one battle, that soon to become very many with the guy to my right....There was a guy directly across from me (bald guy) who had the largest stack, and was very aggressive...I look down at my hand and see A5 suited under the gun....I just call, and it goes to the bald guy....He checks his big blind, and we're heads up...The flop comes 10 4 2....The bald guy bets out 400....I immediately call....The turn comes a K...He checks, and I know i can bluff him....I bet out 1500.....He takes of his sunglasses, and stands up....He pats the table and says nice hand of K10, and he flips over 10 4...two pair! Dude!!! I was like oh shit, WTF was i thinking! I mucked my hand quickly and gave a lil grin!
There was only a few more mintues before the next break....I look down at JJ again....I had that hand about 8 times, and lost about 7 times with them! Anywayz, Im under the gun, and raise....The bald guy announces a reraise....He sits there fiddlin with his chips for god knows how long, and hes says all in! I was like sonna of....I was a big stack, but not necessarily a shortstack either...So i think for awhile, and decide its not my time, once again I flip over my JJ and say i fold....He sees my JJ, and automatically mucks...I was like FUCK, i wonder what he had.....The break comes, and the bald dude makes his way to me..."I had QQ that hand, very good fold! I like the way you play!" I was like hey thanks! I never felt so good about my poker play, and a lil better now that I knew I made the right lay down! Now I know this has seemed like forever but tomorrow will be the final blog, and my outcome of how everything went down!

MY WSOP Venture by Discopimp

Well its the big day....The day of my tourney....We woke up in da mornin for all of us to get ready....And if anyone you know my poker superstition, you know damn well I CANNOT go anywhere unless I'm wearing my rings! We jumped in a cab on our way to the big show....We told our driver "To the Rio please.." He replies " Are you guys going to watch the WSOP?".....I, of course, reply sarcastically with a "Im going to win it!"....
So he drops us off right by the entrance, and as I creep up to the door, I must admit i was a lil nervous, trying to think of every lil situation I might be involved in, and how to play....Then my phone rang....It was my mom, and she called to wish me good luck....If any of you know, that meant a lot to me...My mother does not approve of my poker lifestyle, and harasses me about it constantly....But I am very glad she called, and it eased my nerves just a lil....I met up with Steve and his family before we entered the poker room..Steve is a friend of mine, who also played in the same WSOP event as I....
Ok, its time for da show!!!! I went to go find my table, and seat....I intentionally went to be the first one to sit down, so I can pinpoint each of my opponents, and label them...I must say as they all flocked in, I had each one labeled lower than me...I only labeled one guy at my level...And my assumptions were correct, as I studied them during the day....So we sit, we're all set, SHUFFLE UP, AND DEAL!!
I was pretty nervous to see what my first hand would be...Didnt really wanna be the first guy out ya know....Hands are dealt, and I get KQ offsuit....I raise everyone around the table folds...Now I know its on, and these guys are just as nervous as I am.....Very next hand, I get AQ offsuit....I raise, and one guy calls.....Flop comes 10, 5, 3....I bet out, and he folds....Next hand I fold......Next hand I get AK, I raise, and no one calls....Next hand a guy raises, and I look down and see JJ....I just call....Flop comes KJ9....I flop a set....The man who originally raised bets out 100....Now I know this is a crucial moment in the game, where I need to decide how to play this....I decide to raise, in case he has KQ or K10, lookin to chase a straight....I raise it to 500....He quickly called....I then decide he has KQ....the turn comes an 8.....He checked, and then I decided to see if i can bait him into thinkin i was bluffin, and hope he bets the river...So I checked....The River comes a 9, giving me a full house Jacks over 9's... He checks, and now i know hes got dick....So i decide and over bet might bite him into bluffin me, so i bet out 800......He thinks for a lil bit, and then folds....Right away I won 4 out of 5 hands and know i got control of the table....
I got in a lil groove early....And then I hit one of those streaks....No matter what you get or what you play, and some guy always has a better hand...So i decided not to play too many hands and just take it easy....I was up to about 3,245 in chips....I felt good, and most players at my table were scared to get in a hand with me....A man raises before me, and I look down and see JJ again....the flop comes QJ4....Once again I flop a set....He bets hard, and automatically I put him on AK...SO i dont want him chasing a straight....I decide to raise and raise big! I reraise about 1,000, and he moves all in....I immediately call him and flip over my JJ to show my set....He then immediately flips over QQ and show his better set....Ooooo man did that hurt....The only good thing about that hand was that he has about 2300 chips, so i wasn't out of the tournament, but I did take a crippling hit....We hit the first break, and i had a nice lil relaxed conversation with my friends...Told them about my hands, and how i decided to play them, and how now, Im runnin low on chips.....Ill continue this tomorrow in another blog.....Got plenty of hands, and stories to tell....

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Don't tap the glass by Texter

Had an interesting chat session after my two pair heldup against a guy's allin bet with an open ended straight flush draw. It went something like this:

GuyWhoLost: nh
PokerLizard: Thanks, would've played it the same as you.
GuyWhoLost: Yeah, I'm happy with how I played it :)
FishyGuy: What! You just lost $50 and you're happy....
PokerLizard: Poker is about decisions...not money.
GuyWhoLost: Liz...shoosh...Don't tap the glass on that one.

Ooops...I had just committed a cardinal sin at the poker table; I had given insight to a fish, which may actually make him/her a better player or make them play me better. GuyWhoLost actually follows fishyguy from table to table taking his money and I may have derailed his gravy train. Luckily fishyguy didn't catch on.

So learn from my mistakes don't tap the may scare away the fish.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Controlling pot size based on position by ORAG

I've been running well lately and one change I made is to adjust my opening raise size based on my position in NLHE. Here is what I've been doing for a 10 handed game, then I'll discuss my reasoning.

Position 1-3: Raise to 3xBB
Position 4-6: Raise to 3.5xBB
Button, Cuttoff: Raise to 4xBB
Small Blinds: Raise to 3xBB
Big Blinds: Raise to 4xBB

That is the case if I am the first in the pot (big blind example only SB and he limped). For each limper I generally add 1/2 BB to the raise and adjust what I raise from the BB down.

Now to the important part, why? Some would argue that a small raise in early position is just inviting multiple callers to get in cheap. From what I have noticed, in a deep stack NL game the actual size of the raise is doing little to change the number of callers, I'm talking raises in the 3-6xBB range. Also, I usually want some callers because I'm probably taking the hand down anyway after the flop.

What this does is it allows me to play smaller pots when I'm out of position and larger pots when I have position. I think any experienced NL player understands how important position is. Although I may love to play a large pot w/AA in early, do I really want to play a large pot w/AQ or 99?

In addition to playing for more money when I have a positional advantage, this also allows me to open up my raising requirements slightly in early position. Hands such as AQ and 99 I could be coming in with a raise and if I need to toss it I'm committing less chips. I've found I win a lot more money raising with these types of hands then just calling, as most of the time my opponent will be me on a better hand and will miss the flop. By raising I do not need to hit the flop, they do.

Now, if you're raise isn't narrowing the field to 1-3 callers most of the time, then some adjustments may be needed. In 10,000 hands recently though I've found little need to change this. It probably would not be the case for a low buy in live game.

Remember, it's all about position in NL and if you can have others commit more to the pot when you have that advantage you'll see some nice returns.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Top 10 Things from the 2005 WSOP by Texter

Heading out to the WSOP in a few weeks, has me reflecting on last years WSOP, so here are the top 10 things I saw last year:

10. James Woods - this guy oozes charisma, I can definitely see why he is a movie star. Most of the "stars" at the media tourney showed up looking like they just rolled out of bed and slapped on some sweats. This guy shows up in a nice suit and just took over the room.

9. During the main event, some player I didn't recognize had a small DVD player and was watching "The Color of Money". Not a bad idea considering how long some of those hands were taking.

8. The Rio's Amazon room. This is the where all the tourneys are held and it is the biggest room I've ever seen. Wall to wall poker tables; it's really hard to imagine; TV doesn't do it justice.

7. Tobey Maguire...doesn't like having his picture taken by slobs like me.

6. I found it strange that there was a very long line to get Phil Helmuth's autograph at the Poker Lifestyle show while right across from him there was virtually no line for Howard Lederer's. I guess acting like a douche pays off.

5. Paul Phillips trying to buy his way to a final table; he told me he had already had enough rebuys to purchase a car in one event.

4. Playing in the media/celeb tourney was a lot of fun, even though the structure is really bad.

3. The party at the Palms Ghost bar was very cool; they bar hangs out over the side of the palms and there is a portion of the floor that is see through and you can see all the way to the ground; a lot of people didn't seem to want to step on that floor.

2. The WSOP press conference; we got to ask some questions to the legends.

1. The big game at the Bellagio. I sat in Bobby's room and watched the big game for awhile, it was interesting seeing all that money; also that the pro's play "props" to stay focused & entertained while playing.

This year promises to be pretty cool, but I doubt it will be able to top my first World Series...this year is going to be more about business; which is a little sad, but as they say, "You gotta pay the rent".

Sunday, July 9, 2006

Know Your Opponents and Profit by Skrangeo

In this day and age, a poker game of your choice is at your fingertips. Point, double-click, log in, and away you go. It's a low key evening, and you find what you are looking for...several open $.50/$1.00 no-limit ring games. You log into three tables, switching back and forth. You are a tight player, so if you don't like what you see, you simply fold and switch tables. You win a few pots, lose a few pots. You run into a monster, you catch a good hand. Your results are okay but you just doesn't seem like you get paid off on your monsters and you get called down on your marginal hands. What is the missing element vs how well you do in a live casino? I mean, you are playing the same style, right?

Simply put, multi-tabling will give you poker volume but will end up cutting your player reading edge. Reads are what allow players to make the proper bluffs, traps, slowplays, and getting called on things like overbets. But, with players wanting more "action", the player reads often take a backseat to multi-tasking to keep the energy and excitement levels high with two, three, or even more tables.

This weekend, I (a frequent multi-table player) decided to step back and open only one table. My goal: to make the best player reads possible, record their tendencies in my player notes, and hope to utilize that information to extract the most money possible. I opened a $.50/$1.00 no-limit full ring game, and loaded up $100. I was playing a very tight, aggressive game. Unfortunately, the cards weren't coming and I was taking more notes than I was playing. Due to this, I was able to record the player's actions to my left on this hand:

Snoopy raised in late position ($4), the button called, as did the big blind. The flop was Q78 rainbow. The BB checked, Snoopy bet out $8 into a $12 pot, the button raised to $16, the BB went all in for $45, and then Snoopy re-raised allin ($59) to push the button out. The button folded and the BB showed 9T for an open-ended straight draw while snoopy had AQ for top pair only. Two bricks fell and Snoopy took the pot. I recorded in my notes that Snoopy WAY overvalued his hand (based on the raise and check-raise all in that he then re-raised), and therefore hoped I could get in a mix with him at a later point where he would again overvalue his hand.

It didn't take long. I was in the SB with A6s and limped after it was folded around. I'm not a huge fan of Ace-small (I like it when it is suited in a multi-way pot) but was willing to take a risk against this opponent. Snoopy raised and I called. The tale of the tape.

Full Tilt Poker Game #782289345: Table Sunny Springs - $0.50/$1 - No Limit Hold'em - 11:29:58 ET - 2006/07/09
Seat 1: vertti81 ($39)
Seat 2: Bizznass14 ($106.10)
Seat 3: bigE408 ($104.70)
Seat 4: trepdogg ($44.70)
Seat 5: kracka1 ($19.45)
Seat 6: skrangeo ($105)
Seat 7: snoopy1 ($135.95)
Seat 8: Feeves ($47.75)
Seat 9: johnvoc ($36.35)
skrangeo posts the small blind of $0.50
snoopy1 has 5 seconds left to act
snoopy1 posts the big blind of $1
The button is in seat #5
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to skrangeo [6d Ad]
Feeves folds
johnvoc folds
vertti81 folds
Bizznass14 folds
bigE408 folds
trepdogg folds
kracka1 folds
skrangeo calls $0.50
snoopy1 raises to $3
skrangeo calls $2
*** FLOP *** [6s Ac 7h]
skrangeo checks (I fully expect snoopy to make a continuation bet)
snoopy1 bets $5
skrangeo raises to $10 (I felt way ahead at this point and wanted to test the waters)
snoopy1 calls $5
*** TURN *** [6s Ac 7h] [3c]
skrangeo bets $92, and is all in (I ruled out him having AA, 66, or 77 because I don't think he would have risked a bet on the flop after I checked to him and taking down such a small pot. I felt he might actually have an ace, and unless he held A7, I was a HUGE favorite at this point. If he did have an ace, I highly suspected he would call my MONSTER overbet as if I was trying to buy it. If he didn't have an ace, I doubt he would probably call any more bets)
snoopy1 calls $92
skrangeo shows [6d Ad]
snoopy1 shows [Ks Ah]
*** RIVER *** [6s Ac 7h 3c] [2d]
skrangeo shows two pair, Aces and Sixes
snoopy1 shows a pair of Aces
skrangeo wins the pot ($207) with two pair, Aces and Sixes
*** SUMMARY ***Total pot $210 Rake $3Board: [6s Ac 7h 3c 2d]

Slowplay the Pros at the WSOP by texter

I've been thinking about the World Series of Poker lately and reading a bunch of pro players blogs including but not limited to Joe Sebok, Tony G, Daniel's video blog which you should all check out.

They all pretty much say the same thing, "in these smaller events, I want to double up fast or go home (or to play golf in Daniel's case)." As a matter of fact, Joe's latest blog says, "I started this event today with every intention of playing fast and either building up some chips or going out quickly"

So my advice to the dead money out there in the lower buyin events....slowplay! Let these guys try and double up with top pair and snap them off, go over the top of their big raises; put them to the test for a change. Face it, you don't have much of a chance to beat these guys if you play ABC poker...mix it up and let them hang themselves!

Do it for Johnny! (go read the Outsiders)

Sunday, July 2, 2006

Sometimes nuthin' can be a real cool Corndog

First post here. Figured I would talk about a nice heads-up hand I just had in a Bodog 10-person SNG.

I came into the match with a large chip lead over the villain. This is probably 15 hands into the HU when this hand came up. Although I had such a huge lead, I consider this hand the real turning point.

I have 6955, he has 3045. Blinds 100/200. I am SB (dealer) and get Ks8d and raise it to 400. Villain calls.

Flop 7d 6h Th. No real help, but have an inside straight draw. He checks and I bet 200. (Fairly bad bet on my part in relation to the pot, but it may have helped me later. In general, though, I don't recommend 1/4 pot bets HU). He check/raises me for another 300. This was the first time he had tried that but it was a fairly small raise and I had a stack to play with so I call.

Turn Jc. This doesn't help me, but surely can't help him. He had been tight enough so far that I don't think he had an 89 for an already completed straight. I would put him on an AT or flush draw right here. He bets $300. Really small bet considering the current pot size. After his check/raise that I called, I expected him to fire a big bet at the turn. I have nothing, but the gut instinct after that small bet is to call here. I'm getting ready to bluff at any non-heart river.

River 2d. Can't think of a better card for me (except, of course, one that would have helped my hand). He bets 600. Sticking to the plan, I raise the pot (4200). He folds. Boo-yah!