Monday, February 23, 2004

Damn, it's been fun reading all the poker blogs and the reports of last evening's epic tournament. Gentle reader, you owe it to yourself to plow through the list on the right, if you haven't already.

FatGuy's full writeup

So while driving into work today I was thinking, how the hell did we ever get this tourney thing going? It truly was an off-handed comment.

From December 13th: "One of these days we'll need to get a private table and have a poker bloggers only game. Or can we arrange a private SNG? That could be purty fun, imho."

from Hdouble: "The Great Blogger Hold 'Em Experiment!"

from Grubby: "Let's do it!"

And he did.

We proceeded to get turned down by Party, Empire, PokerStars, Paradise and Ultimate Bet before Grubby saved the day, landing us a home at Choice Poker. A hearty hoist of the Guinness, to you, Grubbs.

It can only go downhill from here.

I know people were bashing Choice for the software (I was guilty, too, of whining about the turbo blinds) and what-not, but honestly, we should thank them for hosting the tourney for us. Beggars can't be choosers. I was content with Grubby finally finding a place for us to play. No need to take a $20 blogger tourney more seriously than it is.

But, I _really_ wanted to see the hand histories. So I've been harassing Choice Poker support today. I finally received this response:

We apologize about the inconvenience but we have had some problems with the hand history feature. We will send you the information as soon as we have it back working.
Choice Poker Support

For the love of God, there's only FOUR people playing there and I'm sure they're all props. Cmon, Choice, it's not like there is a ton of data to go through here. This makes me realize I should prolly cut PartyPoker some slack when they are supplying this data for 36,000 players.

Speaking of which, my Party Poker buddy list hasn't worked in weeks.

But back to the tournament for a moment - I completely forgot about Felicia (who of all the players I would least like to have on my left, of course, was on my left) trash-talking our table. I don't think anyone was expecting the fart and/or p*ssy jokes. Talk about a missed opportunity for an over/under bet.

I mentioned earlier how I broke the ice at our table, the first to go all-in, coming over the top of Dan at PokerWatch on the flop. I really enjoyed reading his take on that play:

I fared poorly. Placed 22nd out of 32. I think I got thrown off my game early on when I folded trip-9s-with-an-Ace-kicker against I don't know what. The dude (he goes by Iggy) was betting like a maniac and I couldn't figure out what he might have, so I ran like a scared little girl -- regretting the move only half-a-moment after I pressed the fold key. He claimed a hand or two later that he was bluffing into me with 2-7 offsuit, known in poker-blogger parlance as The Hammer, for which there was a special $250 bounty out there for anyone who could play it and win.

From that point on, I somehow believed everyone was playing The Hammer against me always -- a classic Dan mistake. Putting your opponents on a constant stream of 27o's is no way to win a poker tournament.

Too damn funny. It's worked, we finally have people muttering to themselves, "could he; could he, possibly be holding THE HAMMER?"

For the record, I was indeed bluffing so I thank the Poker Gods for Dan's fold, or I would have won a months worth of poker lessons, instead of Liquid Swords. Felicia says playing The Hammer didn't count because I didn't show it, and she's correct, but I had the damn auto-fold button still on. I figured the all-in move was win-win, either I get the fold and the pot or I have a good laugh if I get called.

I've also been meaning to link to Dan's fun story about Clonie Gowen playing in his poker game, so here it is:

Shaynamouse, who didn't get a chance to play, had a philosophical take on watching us:

Isn't it weird how the love of a certain passtime coupled with the internet can actually create weird community? It was SO ODD saying hello to people that I spend my days reading about...

I thought it was cool as hell. I didn't mind one bit when Mr. Decker outkicked my top pair early in the tourney, using me as his own personal chew toy. It seemed fitting. And I amused myself by spilling virtual beers on grubette, directly to my right, as she attempted to figure out Choice's chat software.

Thanks to Pauly for posting this:


"thefatguy: you don't know how talented my asshole is, sir..."


Damn, we need to have a weekly Sunday night tourney. Sure, it's -EV, but the laughs more than make up for it.

Alrighty then, enough of this incestous post. The tourney was all that I expected and much more.

Ready for the next one?

What: Poker Blogger World Poker Tour II
Where: TruePoker
When: Wednesday, March 10 @ 21:00 (9pm EST)

Email me for the tournament password.

I think you'll find the TruePoker experience to be quite different from any other site you've ever played on. I'm not saying that's a good thing, it's just different. Much more of a social bent, which should provide some jocularity with our gang.

I'll go ahead and put a bounty on MeneGene's head. Prize to be announced at a later date.

Ready for some non-poker-blogger tournament content? I've got it in spades, per usual.

I'm loathe to mention this BUT: I read Felicia's post about bots so I might as well follow her lead. Plus MS Sunshine is posting about it in 2+2.

Scumware, imho. It's likely one of two things: terrible AI and not worthy of the attention given it or better yet, a trojan horse. I've posted several times in the past about poker bots and generally have great disdain for them. I've played nearly every type of hold em software out there and the AI just doesn't cut it. Read prior posts for why this is so, when compared to a game like chess.

Humans (thus far) > poker bots

That being said, it's important to track these trends, even though I personally don't care. Hell, even Scoopmonster could play as a bot, back in the day, although you'd certainly lose alot of money if you let it. I've found that even the best software, is better used at running sims and refining your play in certain situations (defending blinds, for example) than actually taking the time to beat it. Your mileage may vary. This is especially true at no-limit.

WSOP tournament director, Matt Savage, had updated info on this year's Big Tourney:


The Horseshoe is set to open on April 1st and the WSOP dates are set for April 22-May 28th, 2004. The schedule on the Binion's Website is slightly incorrect, for a more accurate schedule see PokerPages.com, CardPlayer.com, or the PokerProfessor.com.

I am happy to announce that Susan Albrecht is on board and already taking room reservations for the 35th Annual World Series of Poker. Please call 1-877-FOR-WSOP or for immediate results call 702-278-3226. Rooms are already filling up fast and we are making every effort to place everyone in rooms for
the dates they want. Susan also has information on the Schedule, Supersatellites, Double Shootouts, Turn $50 into Millions, Single Table Satellites, and Second Chance Tournaments.


Food for thought: we cut it too close this year, but starting in May, I think we could start a Poker Blogger Series Tournament that sends a poker blogger to the '05 WSOP championship event in our name. It wouldn't be hard to do. There are two monthly local tournaments here, that do just this. I dunno, just drinking thinking out loud.

I've got a ton of poker news links, but screw it. I'd rather pimp these new poker blogs.

First and foremost, make sure to bookmark School of Hard Knocks. You'd never guess by his Photoshop work that he's a cop, but you'd be wrong. That alone makes his blog compelling, but here's why you wanna bookmark it:

I have worked long and hard to get the David Ross story up. Luckily he allowed me to put it on my site so you no longer have to do the BS search that 2+2 will put you through to read it.

Yup, all the David Ross posts in one place. Go visit now.

From a policeman poker blogger, to a surgeon in residency.... Damn, aren't we a diverse group?
Another keeper.
Casino Gosain

Another new blogger who played in the tourney last evening.
Single Malt Poker

From Chicago:
Chicago Phil's Poker Blog

What my blog should be named:
Poker Flatulence

Here's an empty poker blog. C'mon Russ, I'm waiting!
The Russ Has Spoken

No, he hasn't. Not yet.

Finally, World Poker Tour pro, Richard Brodie, wisely chickened out of the blogger tourney, but as a mitigating factor, he has a new post up.
It Rains in Southern California:
The 2004 Los Angeles Poker Classic

Great stuff.
I suppose I'll have mercy on my readers and not post a dozen poker news links.

Let's post poker pro's online names, shall we? From RGP.


Pros & Name Players At Ultimate Bet

dill pickle Mike Matosow
psykokwak is Bruno Fitoussi
Erik123 Erik Sagstrom
atl-angela Josh Arieh
formerly devastator now spirit rock = prahlad friedman (Best NLHE player online, crushes guys heads-up)
Annie Duke - AnnieDuke
Phil Hellmuth - PhilHellmuth
Devilfish/David Ulliot
LayneFlack Layne Flack (has another name on UB but nobody knows it)
joe buttons - Phil Ivey
Tallphil - Phil Gordon
empty chair - Eric Sidel (has a new name, unknown)
scottynguyen - Scotty Nguyen (seldom plays on UB)
Ticker Erik Lindren Swede - (won this years UB Aruba Tourney)
Peasant - Juha Helpi (Last years winner of the Aruba Tourney)
bizingo is ben affleck (does well in pro NLHE game, extremely tight)
tiltboy Rafe Furst
Krullis Daniel Larsson 2nd aruba UB won 300K 2003
wetspot Harley Hall
Zhuge Liang John Juana


Ditto for Poker Stars, only from 2+2:


Daniel Negreanu - doublesuited
Tom McEvoy - Tom McEvoy
Minneapolis Jim Meehan - actiondonkey
Chris Moneymaker - Money800
Pete Giordano - TheBeat
Dutch Boyd - KidDutch
MrPokeJoke - Mike Matusow
LuckBox - John Juanda
Tigerma - Tony Ma
EDOGN - Erick Lindgren
Razorbax - Josh Arieh
DeOhGee - Joseph Cordi
reload this - Layne Flack


I've got plenty more to blog about but it shall have to wait.

Thanks a ton for reading. Consider using my bonus code IGGY on Party Poker if you've found any value in this blog.

Time to Ralph
Ralph Nader is a money-hiding, union-busting, corporate-investing, worker-abusing, glory-hounding, germophobic secrecy freak who scammed his way into receiving millions in college student service fees. And he hates dogs.

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