Tuesday, November 16, 2010

some random thoughts

My parents visited my house for the first time this weekend. We watched the manny pacquiao fight on saturday night at the casino. I was surprised at how crowded it was for just a fight. I think they need to televise an event like this to bring boxing back. It was an amazing fight in that margarito was so much taller and bigger yet still got pummeled. Manny did get hurt though from a few uppercuts.

My fantasy teams are rolling. Tied for best record in the league in one, & on a five game winning streak in the other. This despite a slew of injuries.

Didn't play much this weekend due to folks visiting. I did play a short session with my dad watching, and ran into a few interesting spots. Got it all in with middle set against a flush draw that couldn't fade the river.

Friday, November 12, 2010

mid month update

Having a good november so far. Plugged some leaks and am focused. Had a few hands of "regs gone wild," which was fun...

Villian #1 was a loose aggressive regular who was stealing around 45% of hands.

PokerStars No-Limit Hold'em, $1.00 BB (8 handed) - Poker-Stars Converter Tool from FlopTurnRiver.com

UTG ($146.20)

UTG+1 ($100)

MP1 ($198.50)

MP2 ($110.15)

CO ($186.50)

Button ($54.50)

SB ($100.50)

Hero (BB) ($100)

Preflop: Hero is BB with A, A

6 folds, SB bets $4, Hero raises to $14, SB raises to $100.50 (All-In), Hero calls $86 (All-In)

Flop: ($200) J, 10, 10 (2 players, 2 all-in)

Turn: ($200) K (2 players, 2 all-in)

River: ($200) 5 (2 players, 2 all-in)

Total pot: $200 | Rake: $3


SB had J, 9 (two pair, Jacks and tens).

Hero had A, A (two pair, Aces and tens).

Outcome: Hero won $197

Hand 2, villian is another loose aggro reg

PokerStars No-Limit Hold'em, $1.00 BB (9 handed) - Poker-Stars Converter Tool from FlopTurnRiver.com

Button ($406.30)

SB ($128.15)

BB ($76.45)

UTG ($125.35)

UTG+1 ($111)

MP1 ($75.50)

MP2 ($68)

MP3 ($53.20)

Hero (CO) ($100)

Preflop: Hero is CO with Q, Q

5 folds, Hero bets $3, 1 fold, SB raises to $11, 1 fold, Hero calls $8

Flop: ($23) Q, J, 6 (2 players)

SB checks, Hero bets $9.50, SB raises to $34, Hero raises to $89 (All-In), SB calls $55

Turn: ($201) J (2 players, 1 all-in)

River: ($201) 2 (2 players, 1 all-in)

Total pot: $201 | Rake: $3


SB had 8, A (one pair, Jacks).

Hero had Q, Q (full house, Queens over Jacks).

Outcome: Hero won $198

Friday, October 29, 2010

21 card bingo

So today I met my equivalent in the bingo world, a 21 card playin grandma who has been playing that many cards since she was 15. She said she used to play 7 days per week for years, and has now cut down to 2 days/week. Unfortunately, bingo is a negative Expected Value proposition for the long term, so there is no chance for her to make a living playing.

I had to bump down in stakes to 50NL, but am now playing 24 tables consistently, and hopefully will be able to grind my roll up and start mixing in some 100NL tables again.

Monday, August 30, 2010

fantasy football

So you know summer is coming to an end when fantasy football drafts start up. I'm in two leagues this year, and had one draft to warm up for the league i've been in since college.

My lineup in this 10 team league consists of, in the order in which they were kept/drafted:

Adrian Peterson (keeper)
Tony Romo
Ryan Mathews
Jamaal Charles
Chad Ochocinco
Mike Sims-Walker
Percy Harvin
Jets D
Mike Wallace
LaDanian Tomlinson

and a few other bench players I can't remember

Overall I think I hit a home run and have a stellar team. This league does not give points per reception, so quarterbacks are of extreme importance, hence the first round pick of romo, which i would not otherwise usually do. He was the last decent qb available, so I felt compelled to use a first rounder on him.

Pokerwise, I've been on a terrible downswing and will have a losing month for sure. I've really over extended my play and 24 tabling is not just for me. It's not fun, and I can't go through my thought process quickly enough to keep up. So I will stick to 12 tabling for now until I get my bankroll to where it needs to be, and will probably only play a max of 14-16. I've also limited my play to just the 40-100 100Nl big blind tables, as having different limits and different buy in amounts was just too confusing for me.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

first hand history post

here's a link to the discussion on my first two plus two hand post...


I think doing things like this make me think more critically about my actions, and will help me to learn from good players...

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

largest pot so far

PokerStars No-Limit Hold'em, $1.00 BB (8 handed) - Poker-Stars Converter Tool from FlopTurnRiver.com

MP1 ($100)

MP2 ($130.40)

CO ($419.70)

Button ($372)

SB ($204.35)

Hero (BB) ($167.50)

UTG ($305.30)

UTG+1 ($282.20)

Preflop: Hero is BB with J, J

UTG bets $3, 2 folds, MP2 raises to $8, 3 folds, Hero calls $7, UTG raises to $17, MP2 calls $9, Hero calls $9

Flop: ($53.10) 8, Q, J (3 players)

Hero checks, UTG bets $25, MP2 calls $25, Hero calls $25

Turn: ($128.10) 6 (3 players)

Hero checks, UTG bets $30, MP2 calls $30, Hero raises to $125.30 (All-In), UTG calls $95.30, MP2 calls $58.20 (All-In)

River: ($466.90) 5 (3 players, 2 all-in)

Total pot: $466.90 | Rake: $3


Hero had J, J (three of a kind, Jacks).

UTG had A, A (one pair, Aces).

MP2 had Q, 10 (one pair, Queens).

Outcome: Hero won $463.90

Sunday, August 8, 2010

july review

July was another sucky month. However, I realized I can't be so robotic at the tables, and have tried adding a few elements to my game which will both make playing a little more interesting, and will make me tougher to play against. Things such as flatting premium hands a little more often, playing passively with strong showdown hands when I'm against an aggro opponent, and adding in more bluffs and playing them the exact same way I would play my monsters.

So how did I do?

-153.77 table losses
125.96(5248.21*2.0 FPP/VPP*.012c/FPP)
50 for 45k VPP
22.19 USD total profit- UGH!

Year to date stuff: 1273.99 total rakeback thus far, not including jan, which I need to look up.

So total profit:

2195.48 table winnings
1273.99 rakeback
400 stellar reward bonuses
3869.47 total USD profit

269.45 hrs for an hourly rate of 14.36/hour. I guess I won't be giving up my day job anytime soon!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

time to get back on track

So I've been so bombarded the past two months that I lost platinum status. However, career wise I think I've found what it is I want to do, and what direction I hope to go. That means that poker may need to take somewhat of a back seat the rest of the year. Not putting forth as much effort is a little disappointing though. I feel like i've put in a lot of sweat to get to this point, and to decrease my playing time is rough. At this point, achieving supernova will certainly be a daunting task. But I've come to realize I'm not a superstar. I'm not Sidney Crosby. Rather, at best I'm probably a third line winger like Tyler Kennedy. I know though that I am good enough, and that if I had the stamina and time, that I could at least make 70-80k in a year. But what a grind that would be, and I don't think I like poker that much!

So with my bankroll the way it is, I have a few options on what direction I'd like to go. I can easily keep gold star status with no problem the rest of the year, and probably make like 5-10k. But I've been in an ambitious mood lately, and I would really like to achieve supernova. Right now I need 53,380 VPP the rest of the year. That's 10,676 VPP on average each month. A tall task. I've also decided to start my own practice. Another tall task. But I think both are quite nice accomplishments, and are worth pursuing.

To get supernova, I'd need to play more 200NL, and for longer stretches each month. But whatever. If it happens, it happens.

I've drafted a business plan and hope to open up my own office in the next few months. We'll see how that goes. If I become an entrepreneur, I think I'll need to start another blog and a webpage!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

june review

June was again a very eventful and stress filled month. When there's so much life change it's hard to get good volume in. I finally ran well above expected value, but my winrate was still very lackluster for how lucky I was.

The end result:

+577.00 table winnings
+83.25 rakeback(2561.53VPP*2.5 multiplier for platinum star*.013c/FPP)
+50 stellar reward bonus for 40kVPP
710.25 USD total profit

I only played around 20 hours, for an hourly rate of about $35/hr. I feel like I need to incorporate a few changes into my game. I'm going to play less tables, and will try to make some non-standard plays against certain opponents to try to get this winrate up. Likewise, I will stop overplaying some trap hands. For instance, I'll try 3betting AQ less often, as it does have good showdown value on its own, and is not something I'm too excited to be playing 3bet pots in.

Hopefully i'll be able to post some goals and a reflection on the past few months shortly.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

goodbye vancouver

So we did everything we needed to do this trip- i hope. Business wise, I hope everything is done and I won't have to come back for this purpose again (will elaborate later...). Otherwise, I've really enjoyed my time here. It's a very cool, diverse city, with lots of outdoor stuff going on. A few things i've noticed:

-the people here are slim. i guess i come from a typical, overweight american city, and the people here are fit and skinny. I fit the skinny part, the fit part not so much.

-i've missed living in a city. it was really nice to just walk everywhere you needed to go, or to use public transportation. Today we had to rent a car, and i hit my threshold at the end of the day, and just wanted to park the car, get out, and not drive anymore.

-People here are more health and environmentally conscious. I suppose this also comes with a city. It seems like recycling and eating well are taken more seriously.

Although we've enjoyed our time here, I don't think I could live here full time.

Poker has been going ok, some good, some bad. Today I had sort of an eureka moment, realizing how much the opponent matters. I shouldn't have stacked off against this tight nit. Calling the turn was good, and I kept on hearing my gut saying this guy has the nuts, and wouldn't stack off without it, but I shoved anyway...

PokerStars No-Limit Hold'em, $1.00 BB (9 handed) - Poker-Stars Converter Tool from FlopTurnRiver.com

CO ($91.90)

Button ($100)

SB ($121)

BB ($100)

UTG ($210.60)

UTG+1 ($104)

Hero (MP1) ($106.90)

MP2 ($112.95)

MP3 ($132.05)

Preflop: Hero is MP1 with Q, Q

2 folds, Hero bets $4, 1 fold, MP3 calls $4, 1 fold, Button calls $4, 1 fold, BB calls $3

Flop: ($16.50) K, 8, 9 (4 players)

BB checks, Hero checks, MP3 checks, Button checks

Turn: ($16.50) Q (4 players)

BB bets $11, Hero calls $11, 2 folds

River: ($38.50) 4 (2 players)

BB bets $21, Hero raises to $60.50, BB raises to $85 (All-In), Hero calls $24.50

Total pot: $208.50 | Rake: $3


BB had 10, J (straight, King high).

Hero had Q, Q (three of a kind, Queens).

Outcome: BB won $205.50

Monday, June 14, 2010

vancouver trip

We're in the middle of our trip to vancouver, and overall it is very impressive. The weather has been a little on the cool side, but it was perfect for a 4 hour bike ride we took through stanley park and the rest of the city. I like the diversity and the cleanliness of the city. We're staying near yaletown, which for us is the perfect location- near lots of diverse restaurants. Business wise, i'm getting the things done that need to be done, and it's encouraging. Yesterday, we just walked a little through chinatown and gastown. We stopped into a bar that had a world cup game going on, and I had a guiness and fries- my new favorite food... Today we went to granville island, which has some artsy stores, and a large market. We got some pot pies and they were very, very good.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

crazy month again

Finally got most of the stuff out of the apartment this past weekend. Life is just too hectic right now... i'll be going away to vancouver for a holiday/professional trip, and it's just really bad timing right now. However, I think the amount on the to do list has hit its peak and will be getting better in the coming few months.

I just signed up for my canadian health card yesterday. Maybe i'm falling prey to my wife's socialist view on healthcare, but I will admit i'm happy to not have to deal with co-pays or pre-existing conditions anymore.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

may review

May went a little better than my fiasco in april, but still the results are disappointing.

The end result:

450.95 table winnings
+244.38 rakeback(7519.47 VPP*2.5 multiplier for platinum star* 1.3c/FPP)
+50 stellar reward bonus for 30k VPP

745.33 total USD profit

I played 23K hands at 100NL and had a 1.32ptBB winrate. I had some losses at 200NL over 500 hands.

Need to get this winrate up!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

april review

Here's a quick update on what happened in april. I've been procrastinating long enough, and have to man up with the disaster.

The end result:

-609.05 table winnings

+333.42 rakeback (10258.94 VPPs *2.5 multiplier for platinum star*1.3c/FPP)

+50 VPP bonus for 20K VPP

+50 VPP bonus for 25K VPP



Here's the AIEV (all-in expected value) graph:

About $800 below, so I guess I can't be too upset with my play... Also only 34,000 hands so anything can happen, I just hate losing months!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

low volume

This month i've played only around 14 hours. It's been quite a struggle with the new job. Even though i've only been working 4 days a week, the adjustment has been a lot harder than I originally thought. A lot of it is due to the long commute, since we haven't quite moved out of the apartment yet. Also, the new job is a little more involved, so mentally it's been draining. However, I feel like i'm settling in, and am once again enjoying work and playing poker again.

Overall I think i'm up around 600-700 in table winnings, but my low volume has put me in danger of being bumped down to gold star. So i'm away this weekend, but will have monday to try to keep platinum status.

For those that are wondering why one would play so many tables at once, the answer is twofold. First, just like at any casino (or restaurants, stores, etc with a frequent diners/shoppers club) one gets bonus points for the volume played. They have labels such as gold star, platinum star (which I am now), then supernova and supernova elite. The difference between platinum star and gold star for instance, is that I in effect earn more bonus for the same amount of play. So when I play 18 tables, that's a decent amount of bonus I can earn. At my current level, I would guess my rakeback is around $12-15/hr. This is kind of my "base salary," and is a nice cushion in case I am running poorly or playing bad.

Second, multi-tabling reduces my risk. if I have 18 tables with 100 dollars each going, as opposed to two tables with 1000 each, my risk of going broke is virtually impossible during that session. Plus, the competition is lesser at the $100 table. If I were ever to try and make a career out of this, I would certainly just try to play 24 tables, and try to cut variance out as much as possible. I think it would be possible to get 4k/month in bonuses alone, doing this roughly 32 hrs/week. But that's really grinding!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

april review

I keep on forgetting to download my hand histories from my laptop so I can't post my results yet, but I think i'll hold off as long as I can. This month was terrible- I lost around 600-800 in table losses. With rakeback I probably lost 300-500 overall.

Oh well, what can you do. My poor results were probably a combination of running bad (about 600 below all in expected value), and just poor play.

After my sessions yesterday and today i'm in a solid 10 buy in downswing. Since the tables have switched their buy in structure the tables seem less populated with fish. It seems like most tables have so many regs now. Even during my session today (saturday) I couldn't keep 18 quality tables going. Oh well, just gotta stay positive, don't tilt, and make the necessary adjustments.

In non-poker stuff, my life has been absolutely crazy this month. I'm spending so much $$ on stuff that needs done for the house, our move, job stuff, etc.

I'm really looking forward to getting out of the apartment, and just enjoying the new home and city, and just relaxing a little. Unfortunately, that isn't going to happen anytime soon! Hopefully by August things will be a little calmer...

Monday, April 26, 2010

"case #1"

Ok, so let's give this a try. The hand I originally wanted to post was just retarded, as i just scared playing for stacks at a 200 no limit table. So after searching through my database, here's a hand that may be interesting:

PokerStars No-Limit Hold'em, $1.00 BB (9 handed) - Poker-Stars Converter Tool from FlopTurnRiver.com

Button ($101)

SB ($100)

BB ($110.15)

UTG ($73.70)

UTG+1 ($116.55)

MP1 ($100)

MP2 ($70.25)

Hero (MP3) ($143)

CO ($100)

Preflop: Hero is MP3 with Q, K

3 folds, MP2 calls $1, Hero bets $5, 1 fold, Button calls $5, 3 folds

Flop: ($12.50) A, J, 7 (2 players)

Hero bets $8, Button raises to $26, Hero raises to $44, Button raises to $96 (All-In), Hero calls $52

Turn: ($204.50) Q (2 players, 1 all-in)

River: ($204.50) 10 (2 players, 1 all-in)

Total pot: $204.50 | Rake: $3


Button had J, A (two pair, Aces and Jacks).

Hero had Q, K (flush, Ace high).

Outcome: Hero won $201.50

Some background:

The player who limped was a fish, he was playing about 1/3 of hands, and limped each time. My raise was trying to isolate him. The button is a competent tight aggressive regular. The fish folds, and i'm heads up out of position against the reg. His preflop calling range of my raise consists of: 22-QQ, AJo+, A10s+. He will most likely only raise AA, KK, and occasionally AK and QQ.

On the flop: Gin! Flopped the nuts... So how do we get villians stack? On a monotone flop like this, I would typically lead out with any ace, face card flush draw, and pair with flush draw, AJ, sets, and some air (bluff). So my continuation bet doesn't necessarily scream monster.

He raises. Yea! So this villian is definitely capable of raising this flop light, but i think mostly he has a decent hand. I'll assign a range of AA,JJ,77, a smaller flush like J10dd, AJs, A7s, and some air (say 42spades, and 42clubs). Let's pokerstove it:

KdQd has 90% equity against this range, and he's crushed. My pot odds are I have to call 18 to win 46.5, or 2.58:1 So the question is whether to raise or call. If I raise here, it's obviously for value. I expect villian to call or raise (this is his continuance range) with sets, AJs, and A7s only. Ok, so this is where i have trouble... villians range at this point is about 2.2% of hands. His continuance range is 1.1% of hands. So he continues with 50% of his range (don't know about this math). So if he's calling/raising with about half of his range, it's seems more profitable to raise since there are many cards on the turn which will kill some action (any diamond will slow down any sets, and any A,J,or 7 will put any sets and some two pairs ahead). So there's 8 diamonds, 3 aces, 3 jacks, and 3 sevens that are theoretically out there for a total of 17 cards of the remaining 45 or about 38% of the deck is bad...

So I elect to raise and in this instance, one of the hands in his range (AJo) decides to play for stacks...

Ok, that was long...