Welcome to Derek's Poker Blog

Monday, July 26, 2004

Poker and TV

LIVE Final Table - Turning Point Casino

They aired a live poker tournament on Fox Sports NY the other day. Only the final table was aired. It was on a 5 minute tape delay. It was interesting to see all of these hands being played. Pros playing at a final table short-handed was a sight to see and a good learning experience especially since it was uncut and unedited. The hands being played were not just the bigs ones they usually show you on the normal TV shows. They even showed the bad and ugly ones. Phil Ivey won and beat John Dagostina. John Juanda and Paul Phillips also played. It took place at the Turning Stone Casino in upstate NY.

2004 WSoP on ESPNCorona Anyone?

I'm really glad ESPN decided to air more of the World Series events on TV this year. I enjoyed seeing 7 Card Stud and Pot limit Omaha played on TV. Nothing beat seeing Men the Master snarf his Corona on himself and the table!  Those games weren't as smooth and fluid as when you see an airing of a Texas Holdem game but it was still interesting enough to hold my interest and entertain me for an hour. I look forward to seeing more of these events played on future Tuesday nights.

ESPN's Recent Top 25 ListIntimidators or Bullshit?
ESPN did a Top 25 Intimidators and somehow Chris Moneymaker made the list and Mariano Rivera didn't make it. ESPN is all about hyping up the WSoP. How else would Monemaker make the list as #25 and nowhere to be found is Mo Rivera. That Eric Gagne guy made the top 5. What's with that? For that matter, why wasn't a bigger poker star listed? Didn't Johnny Chan or Stu Ungar come to mind when ESPN was making up this stupid list? Rivera, Ungar, and Chan are much BIGGER intimidators than Moneymaker. ESPN is selling out on this one. I don't dislike Moneymaker or even a guy like Lance Armstrong, who also made the list, but how in the hell does a short fat guy or even a skinny guy in tight spandex shorts intimidate people over Mariano Rivera or one of the other big name poker players? Maybe it's the shaved legs for Lance!! So ESPN runs that story of Stu Ungar to hype up the 2004 WSoP but they don't include him on the list. I think that's rather strange. 

Sunday, July 25, 2004

Great Weekend Online

Ever since I started getting better at NL ring games, my ability to perform well in NL tournaments has dropped off slightly. There's a different kind of mentality involved in both. My gameplan is different. I fold much more in tourneys and wait until the opportune time to double up. I'm not as aggressive early on as I would be in a NL ring game. I fold some really good hands early in tournaments. If you can make it to a certain level without making many mistakes in a tournament, then you'll be ok. By then, most of the All-in clowns will have been knocked out and you can start playing some hands. The tournaments are challenging because the person who makes the least mistakes usually wins. But, you can't be too timid to play hands either. You still have to be selectively aggressive and read your competition. The game changes as the levels increase. You need to make the right adjustments and adapt. Tourney life is also tough because you can't be too foolish in your play and risk making a huge mistake that will cost you your entire stack. Lately, even though my success in tourneys has been a little off the last few weeks, my NL ring game play has gotten much much better. Last night I cashed out of a $25 NL game with over $185. It was definitely my best session ever. I only played for 2 hours and I won most of it in the 1st hour. I flopped Quads on one hand and slowplayed it the whole way to the river. I was worried that it wouldn't pay off but somehow it did. I got the guy during the final betting round. I was lucky he caught a good hand and paid me off. Too bad he didn't have more money.

Check out the hand when I flopped Quads . . . the 2nd Queen was a little scary though.

TexasHoldem (NL) Ring Game -- Seat 3 is the button Total number of players : 10
Seat 1: Jesus ( $33)
Seat 2: P-diddy ( $6.40)
Seat 3: Hack ( $26.50)
Seat 4: ME ( $95.02)
Seat 5: AK123 ( $24.40)
Seat 6: RW ( $32.60)
Seat 7: StickyBud69 ( $24.50)
Seat 8: george ( $24.50)
Seat 9: Don ( $69.95)
Seat 10: Rey ( $26.35)
I post small blind (0.25)
AK123 posts big blind (0.50)

** Dealing down cards **
Dealt to ME [ 4c, 4h ]
RW folds.
StickyBud69 folds.
george folds.
Don folds.
Rey folds.
Jesus folds.
P-diddy folds.
Hack calls (0.50)
I call (0.25)
AK123 checks.

** Dealing Flop ** : [ 4s, 4d, 5s ]
I check.
AK123 checks.
Hack checks.
** Dealing Turn ** : [ Qc ]
I check.

AK123 checks.
Hack bets (0.50)
I call (0.50)
AK123 folds.
** Dealing River ** : [ Qs ]

I bet (2)
Hack raises (4) to 4
I raise (8) to 10
Hack raises (12) to 16
I raise (84.02) to 94.02 I'm all-In.
Hack calls (9.50) HackNice is all-In.
** Summary ** Main Pot: $50.85 Side Pot 1: $68.52 Rake: $2.65
Board: [ 4s 4d 5s Qc Qs ]
Hack balance $0, lost $26.50 [ Jd Qh ] [ a full house, Queens full of fours -- Qh,Qc,Qs,4s,4d ]
My balance $119.37, bet $95.02, collected $119.37, net +$24.35 [ 4c 4h ] [ four of a kind, fours -- Qc,4c,4h,4s,4d ]

I know some people hate to see hand histories on blogs but too bad . . . here's another hand from last night.  

I folded and rightfully so . . . but unfortunately I would've won a big pot. Oh well . . .

Seat 6 is the button Total number of players : 10
Seat 1: frank ( $33.95)
Seat 2: P-diddy ( $0)
Seat 3: mix ( $25)
Seat 4: ME ( $167.97)
Seat 5: AK123 ( $22.15)
Seat 6: Thrill ( $51.75)
Seat 7: StickyBud69 ( $25.50)
Seat 8: Tera ( $25)
Seat 9: Don ( $67.70)
Seat 10: Rey ( $26.15)
StickyBud69 posts small blind (0.25)
Tera posts big blind (0.50)
mix posts big blind (0.50)
** Dealing down cards **
Dealt to ME [ 6c, 9c ]

Don folds.
Rey folds.
frank calls (0.50)
mix raises (0.50) to 1
I fold.
AK123 folds.
Thrill folds.
StickyBud69 folds.
Tera folds.
frank calls (0.50)
** Dealing Flop ** : [ Ks, 9d, 9h ]
frank checks.
mix checks.
** Dealing Turn ** : [ 4h ]
frank bets (0.50)
mix calls (0.50)
** Dealing River ** : [ 9s ]
frank bets (32.45)
frank is all-In.

mix folds.
** Summary ** Main Pot: $36.05 Rake: $0.15 Board: [ Ks 9d 9h 4h 9s ]
frank balance $36.05, bet $33.95, collected $36.05, net +$2.10

I missed out on getting quads again but that was a really crappy starting hand to have.    Anyway, so since I did really well Saturday night in the NL ring games, I decided to call it quits after only 2 hours and went to bed. I wanted to play in the early Sunday morning Party Poker Multi-Table NL Tournament. I wanted to work on a few things and try to correct my recent poor play in tourneys. I was excited and hoped that my great play Saturday night would carry over into Sunday. Unfortunately, it did not. I had my worse placing in this tournament in a really long time. It stung. I played 3 hands all tourney. My full house lost to quads. Fitting revenge I guess. I was outkicked in the other two hands and got KO'd much too soon. Normally I would be a little pissed but I'm not. It was easy to let go of since I won over $160 last night . That made the pain of losing today slightly easier to take. All I can say is . . . next time!

Sunday, July 18, 2004

Sunday morning NL tourney on Party Poker

 I played in one of those cheap NL multi-table tournaments this morning online.  I played with 4 poker bloggers today. There was 1,273 entrants. 1st place winner gets $1,273.  Playing was Al Can't Hang, my brother Paul, Maudie, and myself.  Boy Genuis and Chris Halverson have also been known to play in these NL tourneys.  They didn't make this one though. 
Al Can't Hang finished in 811th;
Paul finished in 583rd ;
I finished in 547th; and
Maudie finished in 438th.

I got knocked out with two pair. I went all in on the flop in the BB. I had 3-9 offsuit and I flopped 9's and 3's. I went all in.  I was a little less than 10 times the big blind.  The table chip leader announces that he's on a club draw. I get slightly irked because he took two big pots from me earlier. One of them was a runner runner bad beat. I knew I was in store for a roller coaster ride with two cards to go in this hand.  Of course he decides to call my T900 raise. I was hoping clubs wouldn't come out so my eyes were focused on looking for clubs.  None came out. I was pumped but why did the pot go to him? This guy caught runner runner on me again but it wasn't for the flush. He got a straight and KO'd me.  Ouch, that hurt. Oh well.  Next time. Poker's a marathon like baseball. That was the 2nd runner runner he caught on me. Damn him! Maudie outlasted us all. She flopped a straight and lost to a flush. Ouch. Paul's all in raise got cracked by pocket 9's. Al Can't Hang was short stacked and went all in preflop with pocket 9's and lost to AQ offsuit. The guy caught his higher pair and Mr. Hang lost.  We all got screwed and busted out. That's two things in common now. Poker blogs and we got smoked on bad beats in the Sunday tourney. I'm itching for the next time we can play together.

Sunday, July 11, 2004

No conscience . . . Mo Rivera would be proud!

I played online late last night into the wee hours of the this morning. I was playing in a $25 NL Holdem ring game. My max buy in of $25 quickly grew to $50. I caught the infamous Hilton sisters in the BB. After one early position raise and a call, I re-raised and got two callers preflop. I flopped a set. There was an A on the flop too. First position bet out half the pot. Second guy folded. I raised it up 3 times his bet. I figured he had an ace or maybe two pair if he was lucky. I was going to make him pay for the next card. He called and a rag hit. I bet again and he called. An A hit on the river. I went all in with my Queen's full. He called and turned over AQ offsuit. He had two pair on the turn . . . Aces up vs. my set of Q's . . . until the river. I lost it all and decided to play two tables at once. No fear . . so I lost a $50 hand earlier . . . so what if my credit card wasn't happy. Well . . . it was a great idea because I stormed back at the same table and my new one and cashed out with a very large payday. It was one of my best sessions online. I was hot at both tables. It was a combo of everything. Good cards, smarts bets, some luck, some skill, great position, aggressive play, tight play, and some loose fish calling my monster preflop hands with their rags. I also did a great job of outplaying people on the flop. Outplaying people on the flop online is tougher than doing it in person at a casino but it can be done if you play it right. Maybe I'll share some of my hands in a future post. More to follow . . .

Saturday, July 10, 2004

Bad Beat City

July 9th - Party Poker

I've been doing real well online these days and have done a better job of letting go of the bad beats that come my way because you have to play in the moment and realize that bad beats are going to happen. Just don't let them get you on tilt. Let it go. With that said . . . . . . I have to mention these two bad beats because they were ridiculous and happened in my last two sessions online. I can't believe this asswipe called my preflop over-the-top re-raise . . . .

Multi Table NL Holdem Tournament
Seat 1 is the button Total number of players : 10
Seat 1: Billy (835)
Seat 2: Joe (1045)
Seat 3: Deeb (835)
Seat 4: Asswipe (590)
Seat 5: Pookie (835)
Seat 6: TJ (1130)
Seat 7: I like Farm Animals (2010)
Seat 8: Sammy (805)
Seat 9: Kostas (985)
Seat 10: Me (900)
Joe posts small blind (10)
Deeb posts big blind (20)
** Dealing down cards **
Dealt to Me [ Ac, Ad ]
Asswipe calls (20)
Pookie folds.
TJ folds.
I like Farm Animals raises (100) to 100
Sammy folds.
Kostas folds.
I raise (300) to 300
Billy folds.
Joe folds.
Deeb folds.
Asswipe calls (280)
I like Farm Animals calls (200)
** Dealing Flop ** : [ 6h, 7c, Kc ]
Asswipe checks.
I like Farm Animals checks.
I bet (600) I'm all-In.
Asswipe calls (290) He's all-In too.
I like Farm Animals folds.
** Dealing Turn ** : [ Ks ]
** Dealing River ** : [ 4c ]
Main Pot has $1510 for Asswipe
Side Pot for has $310 for Me
** Summary ** Main Pot: 1510 | Side Pot 1: 310 Board: [ 6h 7c Kc Ks 4c ]
Asswipe's balance 1510, bet 590, collected 1510, net +920 [ Qc Kd ] [ three of a kind, kings --Kd,Kc,Ks,Qc,7c ]
My balance 310, bet 900, collected 310, lost -590 [ Ac Ad ] [ two pairs, aces and kings -- Ac,Ad,Kc,Ks,7c ]

This clown called my AA re-raise with KQ offsuit! The crazy thing is the original raiser (I like Farm Animals) probably had KK or AK and laid it down but Asswipe calls with KQo. Got to love that. Anyway, I was really short stacked after that hand and held on for a little bit. Unfortunately, I never recovered financially and got knocked out. Mentally, I've let it go and even though I got knocked out, I know this bad beat didn't effect the way I played any of my subsequent hands. That's the only good news. I don't think I could've played my hand any better. He only had a pair of K's on the flop so I was still ahead of him when I went all-in, that is . . . until that turn card came. Ouch.

Here's the 2nd one which actually happened first. I was playing in a $25 NL Holdem ring game and was also dealt AA. I don't like to slow play AA, AK, or KK. There are the few occasions when the time is appropriate but I'm usually aggressive when I bet with these 3 types of hands. My aggressive betting style with these hands usually takes down the pot preflop. I'd rather win small pots with these hands than get cracked and lose a big one. When I get these hands, my hope is that someone will raise it up before the option gets to me. In these 2 hands, that is exactly what happened. Normally, I'd be in heaven but unfortunately these were two instances when things went bad . . . that's poker for you.

Seat 1 is the button Total number of players : 10
Seat 1: Rocco (35.10)
Seat 2: Hank (10.45)
Seat 3: Mel (8.75)
Seat 4: Any Two Cards will do (89)
Seat 5: Large Marge (18)
Seat 6: Phil (11.30)
Seat 7: Kobe (58)
Seat 8: Chris (20.5)
Seat 9: Yogi (18.5)
Seat 10: Me (58)
Hank posts small blind (0.25)
Mel posts big blind (0.50)
** Dealing down cards **
Dealt to Me [ As, Ad ]
Any Two Cards will do calls (0.50)
Large Marge folds.
Phil folds.
Kobe raises (5) to 5
Chris folds.
Yogi folds.
I raise (20) to 20
Rocco folds.
Hank folds.
Mel folds.
Any Two Cards will do calls (19.50) to 20
Kobe calls (15) to 20
** Dealing Flop ** : [ 7s, 2c, 4h ]
Any Two Cards will do checks.
Kobe bets (5) to 5
I raise (38) to 38. I'm all in.
Any Two Cards will do calls (38).
Kobe calls (33) to 38. Kobe is all in.
** Dealing Turn ** : [ 3s ]
** Dealing River ** : [ 3c ]
Main Pot has $174.75 for Any Two Cards will do
** Summary ** Board: [ 7s 2c 4h 3s 3c ]
Any Two Cards will do's balance 174.75, bet 58, collected 174.75, net+116.75 [ 3d 2h ] [ full house --3d,3c,3s,2c,2h ]
Kobe's balance 0.00, bet 58, lost -58 [Kc,Ks] [two pair, kings and threes --Kc,Ks,3s,3c,7s]
My balance 0.00, bet 58, lost -58 [ As Ad ] [ two pair, aces and threes -- As,Ad,3s,3c,7s ]

Unbelievable, huh. Mr. Any Two Cards will do caught a full house on the river. What was he doing in this hand? This hurt for a few moments. I know I want this guy calling me in this situation but this call was ridiculous. This was my worst money loss session in a while. It was a lot to lose but I know I played it right. I would do it again. You have to. You can't have fear or dwell on past losses/bad beats if you want to be successful and win. You must play your good hands aggressively and take down as many pots as possible. The above hand is usually the type you lose when you slow play pocket A's. Unfortunately, I fast played them and this idiot called and still caught the winning hand (runner runner nonetheless). What a bad play and a great suck out by Mr. Any Two Cards will do. These two bad beat stories are not going to happen every time you play this way (unless of course you play against Mr. Any Two Cards will do every session) so I just let it go and I know I will be better off in the long run.

Monday, July 05, 2004

Poker Blogger gives me some luck . . .

June 27, 2004 . . . Al Can't Hang = Good luck for me. I sat down at a $25 NL ring game with Mr. Hang. I've never played with Al before. His blog is linked up on my site. Check it out. His mere presence immediately brought me some good cards. I won my first hand and never looked back. I steamrolled my way to one of biggest sessions online. I walked away with a very large profit that night. I even took a monster $7 pot from Al. What a joke this hand was!! We both had nothing and we were the only ones playing. We both caught back door Royal Flush draws. That's how bad this hand was! Most of the cards were on the board. We both checked all the way down to the river. On the river, I bet after I hit my runner runner flush and beat Al. This pot was even funnier because Al was blogging while it happened. I had the Qc and Al had the Tc. We each needed the other's club to get the Royal flush. It was an ugly hand to say the least but I won!! Anyway, I look forward to the next time I get to play with Al Can't Hang.

Sunday, July 04, 2004

Multi-Table tourney

I've been playing in these really cheap No Limit Multi-table online tournaments. The odds of winning are tough. Usually over 1,000 people enter. First place pays over $1,000 in money. It's a grind but it's good practice. Nowadays, the major tournaments that you see on TV have almost as many people competing. I think a buy-in is worth it every once in a while to gain some good experience in competing against a large field like that. I usually finish in the top 100 or 200 out of 1,000. Not bad since I just started playing online in May. Don't get me wrong, there are times when I've finished much closer to 1,000 than I would like to admit but more often than not I hold my own. Last week I did my best and actually finished in the money. I lasted over 4 hours and finished in 27th place. It was the best I've ever done in this tourney. I won some money which was great but I wish I had my hands on the $1,500 in 1st place prize money. 4 hours is a lot of time to spend staring at a computer screen and only finishing in 27th place. Thank goodness for television and other things. The guy who won 1st place must have been a happy camper that night. I'll blog more about specific hands and situations later. More to follow . . .