Sunday, March 21, 2004

"Luck is not chance
It's Toil
Fortune's expensive smile
Is earned"
Emily Dickinson

Is it wrong to quote Dickinson in a poker blog?
Probably, but I think she hit the nail on the head, so it stays.

Thanks for reading - hope you enjoy today's content.

First off, I'm playing two WSOP qualifiers this evening. I'll keep you posted on how I do. I'm stinging a tad from a sad situation last nite. After banging the 3.6 tables for about $120, I decided to sit in a qualifier for the WSOP tourney tonight on Empire. Only 60 players signed up, with the final nine getting paid, and the final six winning seats. For some reason, this was a limit tournament, which surprised me, but still, I ran up a big stack and was playing extremely well, thanks to TheFatGuy coaching me. When we were down to 15 players, I had a large chunk of my stack in at the turn with top pair and then - DISCONNECT. Argggggggggg. Talk about the worst timing ever. When I finally got back to my table, my stack had been vaporized, and I ended up on the bubble, finishing tenth.

Oh the humanity. I'm still irked.

Here's a classic quote from Scott:

thefatguy: limit tournies are like dry-humping
thefatguy: you both know what you want but you can't quite get there

So I'll be taking a crack at the $150 buyin tourney this evening. I don't understand why in hell these are limit tournaments. It seems bizarre to be playing a limit satellite tournament to the NL championship event. Maybe it's just me.

But it was another fine weekend of poker on Party. With the exception of the Great Disconnect on Saturday evening, I had a fine time at the tables. I even discovered that with the new software, I am able to play SNG's again. For the fun of it, I played in a $30 NL yesterday, and finished second. I suppose I should play some more of these, to sharpen up for the next poker bloggers tournament.

Speaking of which, I like how PokerStars will run a private tournament for RGP, but not for the poker blogging community. Damnit, I'm gonna fire off another email. The fact that these sites can just ignore new business is indicative of how much money they are raking in. Literally.

All poker bloggers please hit Felicia's site for details on the upcoming poker blogger tournament next Sunday at 9pm. She's done a great job setting us up with a custom tourney structure.

Whoa - this is the most amazing post, ever, in a poker blog. I don't want to spoil it, but you must go read this entry before it's gone. For the record, she said YES.
cardplayer's journal Congratulations, Steve!

Hell, how do I segue after that?

Let's try this: here's an interesting RGP post about the legality of wearing a mask in a poker tournament:


While packing for Reno and the WPC, I came across an old Halloween
mask, basically a skeleton head, death mask with wild purple hair,
which of course got me to thinking that it would be pretty cool to
show up at a tournament table wearing this thing. I mean to hell with
wraparound shades and a baseball cap. Is there any rule against
wearing a mask at a tournament?

He never received a straight answer, but I'm waiting to see if Matt Savage will respond. How flexible are the rules on this, I wonder? Personally, I'd go for a welders mask.

Also, from poker pro Tommy Angelo, a final word in a long thread about wearing sunglasses at the tables:

As to sunglasses, I can see how they might be helpful to any player under bright lights in high-stress games, but at a regular casino, at mid-limit, sunglass-wearers smell like fear.

One last interesting note, per RGP. I discovered an old thread with Adbul and John Feeny giving the old back and forth. Fascinating. Here's a snippet relating to luring your opponents into dominated hands, while avoiding dominated hands yourself as a clear path to victory. Feeny first up, with a follow up by Abdul:

I might quibble a bit, however, with the assertion that this preflop accomplishment "gets you most of the way to victory". As you know, it's generally accepted among top hold em players that most of your profit comes after the flop. There are games which are exceptions, but post-flop play is typically the key to winning more than a little.


Unfortunately I cannot really argue with you here, as it would be a silly argument. I can argue that table selection is the most important thing, as a good player with bad game selection skills might be only breakeven in expectation. Or I can argue that hand selection is the most important thing, as someone who plays very well after the flop but has horrible hand selection skills will be destroyed. Or I could argue that any number of other things are most important, but really everything is interdependant.

But anyway, once you enter a pot, pot odds dictate that you should continue contesting it quite frequently, so your pre flop play tends to set you on a course for the rest of the hand. If you are calling tight raises with hands like KJ, no matter how creative your postflop play is, you're not going to be able to reduce the effect of this disaster by much.

Abdul rules.

Damn, Stars support got back to me quick:

We have received, over the last few months, a veritable tidal wave of
requests for private tournaments and cash games. Given that, we're
going to suspend doing *any* private events (except those for which we
have a prior commitment) until we can review the whole process and
decide exactly how to proceed with them.

Please accept our apologies for not doing your tournament or cash
game at this time. When we have reviewed the private event
situation in detail and have a reasonable plan for doing them, we'll
consider all offers.

Boooooooo. That's the same thing you said three months ago.

So let's see what else I have for you today. How about a brand new LionTales, with our poker blogging hero, Richard, cashing in this latest event. Congrats, Richard!
Welcome to the Party: The 2004 PartyPoker Million Cruise

We snagged Andy "The Rock" Bloch away from a Chinese Poker game with Phil Helmuth, Jr., who was in the process of buying and drinking every bottle of Dom Perignon aboard ship

Ever since Fuzz ran his $50 buyin at Party up to a grand, he hasn't needed any of my help. So I've been helping Hawkman, a brand-new hold em player and friend. He sent me his stats, but I'm too lazy to grab them right now. Anwyay, abridged version: after a week, he has tripled up on the 50.1 tables. About twelve hours of play. Let's see if he can't run his bankroll up to a grand in a month or two.

But I'd be remiss if I didn't post this email from Fuzz this morning:

i was playing party poker .50/1 last night and i won a 36 dollar pot. That
has to be one of the biggest pots won at a .50/1 table. Needless to say i called it a night after that. God i love the taste of fish in the wee hours of the morning.

A buddy sent me a PDF from this site
KickAss No-Limit Holdem Poker - I thought it had some interesting points, but it's not anything I would personally pay for. I am, however, researching taking poker lessons from a top pro. I am looking at doing this in early April, when I take a hiatus from this blog. I need some time to gather my thoughts and decide what concepts I'd like to explore and discuss. I think this will prove to be an excellent decision on my part - to deepen my understanding of the game and gain a better feel for some trouble areas. Money well spent.

Oh yeah, I wanted to post this question and response by Gary Carson. A top-of-the-trees viewpoint about TOP.

Im about half way through "The Theory of Poker" and I have just finished
The Free Card chapter. In it, Sklansky explains the importance of not
giving someone a free card if you have the best made hand, or second best
made hand becuase another player's draw could hit and you gave it to him
for free. In turn, he explains how important it is to GET the free card
when you are on a draw. Yet, after rereading Mr. Carson's book "The
Complete Book of Hold'Em Poker" a short while ago, Ive been playing his
suggested strategy and have been raising on the flop with flush draws.
Yes, I do lose a little bit when I dont hit, but I usually rake in huge
pots to cover those losses plus some when I do hit...a profitable play. I
also figured that if I raise on the flop with the draw, it might encourage
other players to think I have a made hand instead of a draw and therefore
if I do hit the flush, that might be the last hand they expect I have.
Yet when I read Sklansky's suggested strategy, I think that if I cut the
losses from not hitting and win mediocre pots when I do hit, maybe I will
even win more money. Both techniques seem profitable to me, does anyone have any suggestions???


The Theory of Poker explains a bunch of fundamental poker concepts, and does a
pretty good job of that. It does not do a good job of explaining when those concepts are applicable and when they aren't.

The idea of raising solid draws for value isn't one that The Theory of Poker covers. Sklansky thinks of playing draws in terms of either free cards are semi-bluffs, not in terms of value.

There are times you should take a free card with a draw, times you should semi-bluff, times you should bet for value. If you're playing in good games you should usually bet/raise for value.

I spent some time in 2+2 this morning, and realized that GrannyMae is back. Sigh. What a dingbat. I guess Granny's real age to be around 18.

Anyway, here are the latest two David Ross posts:

Playing online for a living week 46

Playing online for a living week 47

Reviewing my rake numbers has me wondering what percentage of players can actually win. Since I started with poker tracker, I’ve won $15,350, and paid $14,600 in rake. Assume an imaginary 6 player table, with all of us paying 14,000 in rake, plus my 15,000 in winnings, that’s 100K that the other 5 have lost in total. Unless I’m missing something, those are pretty spectacular losses. It’ll take a lot of opponents to make up that 100K. Clearly I need to look at moving up in stakes if possible to reduce the rake as a percentage of my earnings.

Yet another new poker blog! John started blogging this weekend so go check out:
BadBlood plays Poker

Well, I need to run so I can't get to my Party Poker tips for the day. Allow me to link up a couple of news articles and be on my merry way.

USA Weekend: A fluff piece with sound bites from Chris Ferguson, Daniel Negreanu, Annie Duke, and such other experts as Lou Diamond Phillips and Richard Karn. Nothing of any value, but it looks like really good fish food to me.
Poker faces

Daniel Negreanu. "Patience and discipline are the most important aspects of becoming a winning player. Learning that through poker can give you that virtue in life. You're waiting in line at the bank or stuck in traffic. It can teach you that calm, Zen-like feeling."

Here's an editorial on:
Poker: A game of chance or a science? Backstory: The Green Bay cops shut down all the hold em tournaments going on in bars.

Here's a long article speaking yet again about the cultural juggernaut that is POKER. And this one is worth reading. Can you say MORE poker shows on TV???? Woohoo!
Oregon Live

On "Late Night Poker," Phil Hellmuth Jr. has just played a bad hand. The announcers can't believe it.

"What induced Phil to play that hand in the first place, Barney?" asked Jesse May, disgust dripping from his voice.

"Position, arrogance, desire to control the game," analyst Barney Boatman replied.


What in the name of "Amarillo Slim" Preston is going on with all this poker on TV?

"Enough is enough, I'm tempted to say, but there's more in the works," said James McManus, the author of "Positively Fifth Street: Murderers, Cheetahs and Binion's World Series of Poker" and a world-class poker player.

And how does McManus know more poker shows are in the works? Well, because he's helping develop one himself. He can't talk about it (he's signed a nondisclosure agreement), but he can help explain the full house of televised poker and the insatiable demand for the game that's sweeping the country and making math popular again.

Wow, McManus developing a poker TV show. This poker thing just keeps getting more and more insane.

I suppose that's enough for now. Hope you enjoyed the post and actually read this far down. I'm off to make dinner for the family and prepare to play some tournament poker tonight. Hope you enjoyed a great weekend.

Link of the Day:
Speaking in the Nerd Person
The Joel Furr FAQ "is not provided out of a sense of personal vanity." How could anyone get that idea from a 19,900-word, 93-question, 315-Joel list that answers everything from favorite soft drink to feelings about fish?

All Content Copyright Iggy 2003-2007
Information on this site is intended for news and entertainment purposes only.

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