Saturday, February 28, 2009

The Poker Players Alliance

My first experience playing poker on-line was with Pokerstars. In the beginning, I enjoyed the fun of playing with Play Money chips, and entering the small sit and go tournaments. I cashed in my fair share, won a few, and considered myself an above average poker player who was worthy of a WSOP bracelet because I’ve done it on the WSOP video game on Playstation. Ah, the power of dreaming. I've learned a lot since then.

A few years ago, the Poker Players Alliance announced some Freeroll tournaments on Stars, where they uploaded some cash into the tournaments. I’d never done one before, and thought “hey, this one would be fun.” The only pre-requisite was to register was I had to agree to register as a member of the PPA. I really knew nothing of the PPA at the time, and without a thought agreed so that I could play in the tournament. It was a good thing that I did, as I cashed in that tourney to the sum of sum $11 or $12, my first real money win.

The concept of real money on Pokerstars was completely foreign to me. I wasn’t even sure if playing poker on-line for cash was legal. In fact, I had an old version of Pokerstars loaded on my PC at the time, and I couldn’t even access the money for a few weeks. Finally, I contact PS support, and they had me install a new version and I played in my first cash games on-line.

Yesterday was a PPA trivia day on twitter, and the question was asked “Who holds the record for the most WSOP bracelets.” I had just dropped Jordan at the airport, and randomly checked my Blackberry and noticed the tweet. I figured (while driving, which is illegal in California now) that I’d respond back with Phil Helmuth, the appropriate answer. And later that night, I received word that I’d won the contest. The prize? A PPA T-shirt. I was stunned. I mean, I’d just won the Twitter Poker Tour contest a few weeks ago, and now a PPA T-shirt. I just couldn’t believe my luck through twitter.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the PPA and what they do, I’ve learned since my first encounter a great deal about their role and their importance to me as a poker player. The PPA’s mission statement is such:

“The Poker Players Alliance (PPA) is a non-profit membership organization comprised of online and offline poker players. Our membership consists of enthusiasts from around the United States who have joined together to speak with one voice to promote the game and protect the right to play poker in all its forms.

The PPA’s mission is to establish favorable laws that provide poker players with a secure, safe and regulated place to play. Through education and awareness the PPA will keep this game of skill, one of America’s oldest recreational activities, free from egregious government intervention and misguided laws.”

I am a member of the PPA, and I am proud to call myself so. This is a link to a video that explains a little bit more about what they do,

I encourage everyone to become a member of this group at
You can do so for free. Or you can upgrade to be a premium member for only $20. It’s worthwhile, and supports a cause that I believe in, Americans should be allowed to play poker.

I want to thank ppapoker for the T-shirt contest, and for everything that they do. I am truly grateful. For those on Twitter, give @ppapoker a follow. You won’t regret it.

Friday, February 27, 2009

A final table appearance at the TPT

Thursday brought 41 players to the Twitter Poker Tour as the crew saw action on Pokerstars for TPT-Stars #10. Play was pretty fast and furious early, and I got caught up in a really bad hand with an opponent who kept calling me down.

We both took a flop with me in the BB of J-brick-brick. I had J-7, and led out on the flop, turn, and the river, the last bet being enough to put my opponent all in. The turn and river bricked out as well leaving me with top pair, and almost all under cards. I didn’t put my opponent on a straight, and when he called my River bet, I was surprised to see QJ, but the Q kicker was good.

From there, I was only left with 400 plus chips, and would take 470 to the first break. Then it became a real shove-fest for me, where anytime I got something moderately decent, I moved all in. I stayed alive long enough to double my stack a couple times, the biggest of which getting 2 callers with pocket 6’s. When the cards were flipped, my opponents tabled AK and A7. The flop came out 4-6-7, and I was in really good shape. The turn produced another 7 giving me a boat, and a couple more outs to my opponent, but the river bricked, and I moved to over 3k in chips.

I was able to nurse that stack pretty much all the way to a final table where I would get bounced in 9th place. I raised half my stack with pocket 8’s, and the guy on me left moved over the top all in. I thought that he had Aces or Kings, but was hoping for AK when I made the call to at least make it a race. But I was right when I called and he tabled K’s.

I had to leave shortly thereafter to pick up some IV supplies for Traci, so I didn’t get a chance to catch the final table action after that. But I want to extend my congrats to the players who cashed.

5th – S.t.b
4th – Waz Poker
3rd – sotied
2nd – 110 Octane
And a special congrats to taz31362 for winning the event. It was another well played event, and I’m happy that I made it back in time to play in it.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

A full Table to the Home Game

Last nights game at Pablosplace brought a full table to the home game, as 9 players saw action. It was another fun game, with painfully long orbits, but a very well played game indeed.

Tay made her return, declaring that it was her night, and while it didn’t start that way, it would certainly look that way in the middle stages. She was the first exit, after calling me post flop, on the turn, and raising my river bet all in. On a board of J-J-2-10-J, Tay shoved her remaining 40 chips, and I made the call flipping pocket 4’s for the made full house. She tabled Q-2, and then re-bought another 50 chips.

Sherman would make the next exit, and then re-buy, the last one of the evening. Then slowly, players dwindled. Jordan exited after having his stack crippled moving all in pre-flop with Q’s, only to find Robert calling him with Aces. He was the first to exit the game. Sherman would follow in 8th, and then Tim in 7th. Chris, then Amber would go, and finally Traci to leave the larger stacks (Myself, Tay, and Robert) three handed.

Tay had gone on a magnificent run of cards, catching everything she needed in chipping up to a good sized lead of over 600 chips, with 1000 in play. But I caught a break a little later, holding Jc-4c from the big blind, I got to see a free flop of Qc-10c-6c. Tay and I checked down till the river, and the turn produced a brick 7h, and the river was the King of Diamonds. On that one, I bet 20 and Tay raised to 40. I re-raised to 60 and Tay moved all in. I called showing my flush and Tay table AJ for a straight. But that chipped me to the lead.

Robert would eventually get it all in against Tay and ended up way behind K-9 to A-K. The board provided Robert with no help, and he exited in 3rd place.

Tay and I had a great heads up match, lasting nearly 60 hands. She controlled all of the early action, amassing a massive chip lead of nearly 850 to 150. But I made a comeback and was able to chip up to over 200 when the first swing hand took place. I got it all in having flopped a pair of J’s, and Tay made the call with K-10. She didn’t catch up and I doubled. To her credit, I had showed nearly everyone of my bluffs, and she put me on absolutely nothing.

The second swing hand came shortly after, as we got it all in on a board of J-J-2. I tabled J-7, and Tay, J-3. The turn produced a 5, and the river an 8, and my hand held up. This gave me a commanding lead as it left Tay with only 52 chips left. The final hand, we got the money all in pre-flop, and Tay tabled 6-2, and I tabled A-6. No 2 on the board gave me the pot and the win.

Thanks for everyone who made it. It was a lot of fun as always. I’ll be getting back from New Orleans on Wednesday, so I will be playing in Thursday’s TPT on Stars, and the home game is good to go on Friday. Cheers, P

Friday, February 20, 2009

42 in the TPT

It was another great tournament last night as the Twitter Poker Tour brought 42 players to the tables at Full Tilt to compete in TPT Event #9. It was the 5th event of season 2, and the even continues to grow more and more popular.

I began the night in neutral, and really remained there for most of the evening. I never dipped below 1000 chips (starting is always 1500), and I never chipped up to much above 3000. It was just kind of an average night for me. I saw Aces twice, and Kings twice, and in those 4 hands, I received a grand total of zero caller, and saw no flops, racking up the blinds early on.

Also (and this is giant news) I received pocket Q’s, and I played them. The board popped out Ah-Qh-brick, and action was checked to me. I bet the minimum, and my opponent folded. Does this mean that the curse of the Q’s is over? I don’t know. I’m still a little bit tentative when I see them. I did get bounced out in 10th place in a knockout tourney with Q’s, and 9 places got paid. Oh well.

In the end, I got the rest of my 2400 chips into the middle with Ad-9d, and the big blind made the call with a suited connector (7d-6d). He had two live cards, and a 6 hit the flop. The turn and river bricked out for me and I was eliminated in 10th place, mostly content with how I played, and that I’d stayed alive at near the bottom of the tourney for so long. The deep run also pushed me into 2nd place on the Season 2 Leader Board ( Looks like I may end up getting a T-shirt from Bad Beat Clothing ( after all! Still got some more events to play in, but I’m definitely happy with where I’m at.

And now, for the winners. A special congrats to the players who actually cashed last night. In fifth, @pokerplasm, who also (about the 3rd hand in) declared himself the bounty. He came out firing the first few hands, and then tightened up and played strong all the way through. In the final few hands, he got unlucky getting it all in with AJ, and his opponent had A7, and the eventual 7 on the river did the trick. He wasn’t eliminated, but short stacked, and would go out shortly there after.

In 4th was @rhoegg, who with this cash and awesome run, remained in First place in the Twitter Leader Bboard Standings. Congrats!

In 3rd was @bloomey, whom I believe mad his initial appearance in this week’s TPT. A strong showing for the first timer.

The heads up battle between @Mitchell1969 and @ffcowboy76 was amazing. @ffcowboy76 came in with the chip advantage and also with an extra $5 by eliminating @pokerplasm in 5th place. But the chips swung back and forth for quite some time until one pivotal hand changed it all. Both players got it in with two Kings on the flop, and @Mitchell1969 had a K. That hand was best as the pocket 4’s were no good, and left @ffcowboy76 with only about 3k in chips. But he battled back ferociously, taking a few pots, and chopping a few others to avoid elimination. In the end, an amazing hand finished it off.
With the blinds at 1k/2k, and @ffcowboy76 at around 15k left, both players took a flop of A-9-6. After a check, @Mitchell1969 led out with a min bet, and @ffcowboy76 promptly check raised to around 10k, leaving only about 2k behind. @Mitchell1969 went into the tank for a while, called for time, and then made the right call by re-raising enough to put @ffcowboy76 all in, and he made the call. The two turned over their hands, and @Mitchell1969 was ahead with his pair of 9’s (9-3) to @ffcowboy76’s 6’s (K-6). The turn made it interesting as another 6 hit the board, giving @ffcowboy76 a set of 6’s. But the lead was very short lived as the river produced another 9, giving @Mitchell1969 the winning full house and the TPT #9 victory.

Thanks again to everyone who participated. Next weeks event on Pokerstars just seems too far away! See ya then. Cheers, P

Saturday, February 14, 2009

The Reg's for Friday Night

It was nice to have most of the group back in the place where we usually play at home. The pablosplace group brought almost all guys to the table last night, as Traci was the only female playing, but nursed her short stack all the way to a third place finish.

In all, Robert, Tim, Jordan, Jay, and Andrew, joined Traci and I to make a 7 person table and make the laughs abundant. Play was pretty good all the way through, and eventually, I ended up heads up with Jordan, with Jordan holding a significant chip advantage.

In the last hand, we gat it all in when I re-raised by shoving all in with A-5, and Jordan made the quick call with Pocket 8’s. The flop came 5-5-Q, and ran out bricking for Jordan to give me the win.

Next week, we’re good to go as it’s the last night that I’m in town before hopping a place to New Orleans for Mardi Gras. Until next time, cheers, P

Friday, February 13, 2009

Jack'ed up

Last week it was Queens that did me in. This week, it was pocket Jacks by the Queens.

We had another 30+ showing at the Twitter Poker Tour as 33 players made their way to the Thursday Night game. I began my evening with a renewed enthusiasm as I’d been playing well enough of recent to enjoy a couple of cashes in tourneys. But I was having fun playing poker, and the TPT always enhances that.

I didn’t think that I played extremely well, but I picked my spots for the majority of the tournament, and at the break I somehow managed to take myself into 2nd in chips. I didn’t have amazing cards, but played the ones that I had pretty well. 3 hands basically became my undoing.

The first one was a pot with @The_Gov, I was dealt pocket J’s, and made a 2.5 raise. Action was pretty tight at the table, and most people were folding even to min raises or small post flop raises. But from the SB, @The_Gov, re-raised, and I made the call. Heads-up to the flop @The_Gov moved all-in with a board of Kn-brick-brick, and I put him on a flush draw and made the call having him covered. He tabled Pocket Q’s and I didn’t catch up. From there, @The_Gov made a great run and amassed a sizeable chip stack. He played really well from where I sat, and controlled a lot of the action at the table.

Down to 10 players, I got it all in calling a pre-flop shove when I got pocket J’s again. Heads up, my opponent tabled Pocket Q’s again. And that left me with only about 1200 or chips. I was pretty well done in there, but still had one more shove in me, getting it in from the button with pocket 5’s, and getting one caller, who tabled pocket J’s, and my evening was ended in 10th place.

Final table action was well played again, and the heads up lasted well in excess of 100 hands. Eventually the night ended when @arispoker called the pre-flop all in by @rhoegg and having him in trouble A-5 vs. J-5. The board produced no help for @rhoegg and @arispoker took down the pot in a great battle.

Congrats to the others who cashed: 3rd Waz Poker, 4th markofInk, and 5th, magictrekker.

It was another fun Thursday Night. Don’t miss out on the upcoming event next Thursday on Full Tilt. Click here for more details ( Until next time, cheers.

My favorite contest win

I can think of two contests that I’ve won in my lifetime. One was for tickets to the Phantom of the Opera. It was a radio thing where I called in on the local station and won two vouchers for seats at the Pantages theatre in Hollywood, redeemable for seats anywhere in the house. I was able to get second row seats in the orchestra section. I was so close, you could see the actors sweating during Masquerade. I took my mom, who’d never before seen Phantom, and it was a great experience all the way around.

But this one, even though it’s a much smaller win in relation to the dollar amount (The Phantom tickets retail for about $400 each), meant a lot more to me. A lot of it has to do with the timing of when it happened, but I have to say that I am much more excited about this win.

Yesterday I was announced as one of four winners for the Twitter Poker Tour free entry giveaway. The prize awarded 4 players 2 free entries into TPT events, which amounts to a total of $11. And I was more overjoyed than I can express in words.

I’ve written about the TPT events several times on pablosplace, and if you haven’t been able to tell from the posts, I love (And I mean L-O-V-E) playing in these events. I have a tremendous amount of fun chatting with the members of the group, talking about funny anecdotes on life, and overall just being friendly on twitter.

But for me, the TPT has provided a big escape from the stuff that life has brought upon my household over the last year. To help fully understand, I’d have to write a book about all the medicinal stuff that my fiancĂ© has faced in the last 7 years, between successfully battling cancer, to the advanced Graph vs. Host disease (“GVH”) from the Bone marrow transplant (“BMT”), to the eventual loss of motion in her lower extremities, resulting in a wheelchair being her only means of transportation. Then the GVH advanced so rapidly, that we began to fear the potential of loss of life. GVH is not typically a terminal disease. It is quite common after BMT’s that patients acquire it to some degree. In the smallest of degrees, it may be a small patch of skin that changes its pigment, and then burns itself out to return to normalcy. Then there are advanced cases like Traci. Her GVH as become so extreme, that it has basically eaten away the flesh on her legs from the knees down to the ankles, and the live wounds make her susceptible to infection. It’s the infection that can often lead to an ending.

We still hold onto hope that the wounds will heal. That the GVH will burn itself out. That through physical therapy there may be a chance that she could regain the ability to walk. But at this point, all of it is really unknown. And we make sure that she gets her nutrition regularly supplemented through a home IV, and that she goes in weekly to have the dressings on her wounds changed in the operating room by a surgeon under sedation. To say that it has been difficult would be the misrepresentation of all misrepresentation. It’s been impossible. And yet, we hold onto hope.

After my divorce, I found poker. It wasn’t the thing that healed me, but it was a vehicle that created the games at my place. Because I had custody of the kids, I invited everyone over to my place on Friday nights to play a game. And slowly, I became social again. It was a way that I could re-engage with the world, so-to-speak. And I’m grateful that I did. I found many wonderful friends that I think the world of, have had many memorable experiences with, and continue to share laughs and good times on Friday nights, and beyond. But it was tied around this game of cards. This strategy game. A game that is just simply, a fun game.

Finding the TPT has really helped me rediscover the fun in poker. Because it’s online, I can sit in the living room, and not have to leave the kids with a sitter, or leave Traci unattended, and sit down and play my game without worries of everything that is here in the house for a few hours. Life, it just kind of fades away for a brief moment while I’m able to play a game, laugh, and have fun. I don’t indulge very often because I rarely have the time (between medicine, work, and being a dad to 4 girls). There just isn’t enough hours in the day.

In creating the TPT, it has brought unexplainable joy to me. I talk about it a lot, because it means a lot. I want to say thanks to Geoff (@cprpoker) and Trevor (@pokerplasm) for having the foresight in creating the Twitter Poker Tour, and for diligently working to maintain its overall awesomeness. I truly appreciate all of the work that you’ve done, and I hope that you’re getting back from this all that you deserve.

I’d like to thank @BassW for hosting the contest, and providing the prize. And to respond to your DM, yes I will continue to write about and Tweet about the TPT. I hope it grows into a phenomenon. It has all the features that would lend one to think that it would be possible. And it excites me every day to watch it happen before our eyes. Thanks to the TPT sponsor’s Bad Beat Clothing ( and Grinder School ( for adding the value to the TPT that you bring.

And a great deal of thanks to all of the players on the TPT. You make the ride possible. Without your contribution of $5.50 every Thursday, it wouldn’t be the same. Having you show up, and push chips around the table, and throw out the witty zingers with “lol’s” makes the night go by with smiles. Thanks for all of the “nh’s” and “gg’s.” They have been enjoyable. Every one of them.

I look forward to the event growing, and I’ll continue writing about it so long as I’m capable. I do intend to be a part of as many of these as I possibly can, and have re-worked my calendar to allow me to be able to do so. It means a lot to me. And I’m glad to call myself a member of the TPT.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Tourney's are my friend....

at least....they are today.

A day after my vent post about Cash games, I played in a couple of tourney's. I began with the smallest buy in that there is, the Poker Stars Micro $.10 buy in 360 person Sit and Go tourney. This thing is a total crap shoot, and I've won it a couple of times (A pay out of $8 and change, which considering the buy in and time spent, it's not terrible). You begin with 1500 starting chips, and the blinds begin at 10/20 with 5 minute levels (yes, 5 minute levels), so it's a bit of a shove-fest. By the hour mark (the first break) the blinds have gone to 500-1000 with some ante that I can't remember at the moment, and really, the tourney has almost always reached the bubble.

I felt vindicated in that since this was the first tourney that I'd played in since my rant, that I'd finished in 23rd place out of the 360, and took home a modest cash of $.30. It's not so much the $.20 profit, because I could really care less about that. I was clapping my hands, and giving the fist pump of joy, and an occasional "YEAH!!" every once and again. I was having fun playing poker. And I've missed that.

Today, I got home from work and entered into the Full Tilt $3.30 Knock-Out Tourney and I had my best result yet, a 5th place finish. Add the 5 knockouts to the $18 cash, and it was a nice little profit. But I didn't really care about the cash. I was giddy over the final table appearance. Something is just cool as the Midnight Theme goes to a Final Table theme. My heart starting to pound as player after player was bounced until we were 5 handed, and I got it in with Ks-10s, only to be called by AQos.

I had fun. It was what poker was supposed to be, and I was happy that I was playing again. Can't wait for tomorrow's TPT and I hope that my success on the last two tourney's Parlays into a good showing. I don't really care about the cash. I'm just happy that I'm having fun again.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Letting go of a Poker Dream?

Over the last week or so, I’ve come to realize that poker is not really something that I’m ever going to excel in. I’ve never thought of myself as an elite poker player. I’ve always enjoyed the game itself, and I’ve enjoyed the camaraderie with the players that I’ve fellowshipped with throughout my 3 plus years of playing the game.

But lately, I’ve been taking poker too seriously I guess. It’s ceased becoming a fun game, and become more of a business venture of sorts, and a losing one at that. I’ve started to look a the statistics of how my play fares from a financial standpoint, and it’s losing it’s fun qualities for me.

I started tracking my progress on Full Tilt, and began with a $71 bankroll. I was happy after my cash in the TPT and had some success at the $.05/.10 tables on Tilt. But the cash games just weren’t as fun for me. I played in a little under 2000 hands of poker only to be down, and now, I’ve charted 3200 hands of poker to a losing total of more than $46. I’d say it’s a rut, and there would be some truth in that, but really I’m just getting beat a lot. In looking at my 24 sessions of cash game play, I’ve had 10 losing sessions, and 14 winning sessions. Yet, I tend to lose a lot more than I win. Not sure exactly why, but I think it’s because I chase my cash when I’m losing instead of walking away. I’ve had 4 double digit dollar losses, and only 1 double digit gain. Meh.

I guess in all this ranting what I’m feeling is that cash games are just less fun than playing in tournaments. So I stepped away from the cash scene and played in some of the 90 person Knockout Sit and Go’s. It’s a $3.30 buy in, and $.50 goes for your knockout, and the other $2.50 into the tourney pot. The final table gets paid, and your collect $.50 each time you knock someone out of the tournament. And lo and behold, I’ve found myself having fun again. I cashed in 9th place in one of the tourney’s and felt happy about it. And in the tourney’s where I lost, I didn’t walk away carrying that sinking feeling of donking off chips on some ridiculous hand.

Over on the Stars side of things, I’ve played in more of the lower buy in tourney’s and enjoyed those a great deal too. But the cash games always tend to leave me frustrated with my losing as well. And while pleased with the small wins that I do get, it leaves me with a thirst for something more.

I’m a big time competitor. I love sports, and I love conclusions. It’s probably why I’d like to see a playoff instead of the BCS mess that they currently have. And I think that it’s this belief that lends me to have more fun at the tourney’s than at the cash games. I like that there is an end goal. I want an eventual winner, rather than an open ended financial goal which seems to be virtually unattainable, and also completely unknown to the other players. How am I supposed to know what the other player’s financial goals are at a cash game? I see so many people come in for one hand, play it, win/lose, and leave again. Was that for fun? It bothers me. At least at a tournament, everyone’s goal is to at least finish in the money, if not to win the whole enchilada.

I’d love some feedback as to whether anyone feels the same way. But I’m thinking about giving up on the cash games all together. What do you think? Can you play poker in a setting where you have no real motivation?

Monday, February 9, 2009

Twitter Poker Tour Contest

So the TPT is giving away some more prizes, and you don't want to miss this one. It's too easy to enter. Go to, and enter the contest already.

Many thanks to @BassW for sponsoring the contest in which he has offered 4 winners, 2 buy-ins each to the next TPT events ($11 in cash). Entry is easy, so just do it.

And if you haven't been to yet, go. Go now. Just click the link and do it, and discover for yourself what everyone else already has. The TPT is an awesome emergent weekly tournament.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Don't play with Queens

They’re a beast. They’re an evil beast at that.

Yesterday, I played in two different tournaments, one live and one on-line. In the live game, Jordan, Phat, and I all went down to the Bike to play in the $40 buy in Nooner. I was pleased when I sat down at the table to see $4000 tournament chips to start us out as opposed to the normal $2000 that this tournament provides. Generally, Wednesday is the only deep stack that they have, and it’s the way that I prefer to play. But until March 3rd, all Nooner tournaments will be deep stack, so I may play in one or two more if my schedule permits.

My tourney started out in the wrong direction quick. Every one of my small raises was either called or re-raised, and if I chose to see the flop, it missed me completely. I couldn’t catch stronger starting hands than A-Kos, and it hurt. By the time that the break had rolled around, I was down to about 1k left. Phat came over to pay his respects as he hit the rail having turned a spade flush to the Q, but his opponent flipped over A-K with the Ace being a spade, and the 4th spade on the river did him in. Jordan had chipped up nicely to around 9k, and was playing very well.

After the break, I got a doubled up with pocket 5’s in a race with K-J. I dodged that bullet and was at around 1900 when I got the last of my chips in the middle again. From middle position, there was one limper to the pot when I saw pocket Q’s. With the blinds at 100-200, I raised it up to 800. Action folded to the big blind who made the call, and then the limper folded. Heads up, we saw a flop of 8h-7d-5h, and the big blind checked it to me. I pushed the last of my chips in the middle, and got an instant call. He turned over 4h-2h for a flush draw. The turn was an Ace of clubs, and the river did me in with a 6 of diamonds, giving my opponent a straight. Tough hit as I left with 7 tables remaining.

Jordan would last to shortly after the field went to 6 tables, as he’d get the rest of his chips in on a board of J-6-3, and found action from one caller. Jordan tossed over AKos, and his opponent tabled 4-2. The turn produced a 4, and the river blanked eliminating Jordan. Both of us walked out of the Bike in sheer amazement that we’d been done in by 4-2.

Last night, the on-line tourney was another Twitter Poker Tour tourney. As I’ve written many times before, I’ve really grown to love this event. Last nights version was a relative surprise as only 26 players saw action, but it was still a great tournament.

I started out the night taking a few small pots without a showdown, and then I just got stuck in reverse again. I ended up at the break with around $1000 left. After the tables consolidated to two, I left in 17th place getting a preflop call on my all in shove. Heads up, I had pocket Q’s, and @JPYoung showed Ad-Kd. The flop and turn were all unders which gave me a huge lead, but I lost the coin flip on the river (again) as a K hit and eliminated me much earlier than I would have liked to have been.

I’d like to say that it was my chips that had @JPYoung take control of the tournament and dominate it all the way to the final table, and the eventual win, but really it was his good play that did it. I’d also like to extend some congrats to the other cashes, @Rhoegg who eliminated @SteveBrogan in 5th place and won the bounty in addition to cashing in 3rd. And a congrats to @Swyyft for his second runner up finish of the TPT season 2. His cash vaulted him to the top of the TPT leader board, just ahead of @SteveBrogan in second place, and yours truly as I remain in 3rd place on the leader board (

Next week I’m hoping to make another deep run in the tourney, as I’d like to move up in the standings. Hopefully we’ll see some increased participation in the TPT-Stars event. I’d love to see over 40 participants.

For the Pablosplace game, we’re a no go tonight as we’ll be at a house warming party at Andrew’s. Until next week, Cheers.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Tracking my online play

I recently read a blog by Daniel Negreanu at A respected and world renowned pro, Daniel has decided to try an experiment by loading $10 onto a Poker Stars account (, and play at the Micro Tables (.01/.02 No limit Hold em') and see if he can begin building a bank roll. His goal is to take that profile to a bank roll of $100,000 in three years, and he's got some unique ideas as to how to do just that.

I found myself intrigued at the notion that a player could begin at a level of poker that I can afford, and run their bank roll to over $100k. I thought to myself, "why can't I do that?"

Well the easy answer is, I'm not Daniel Negreanu. I haven't ever played a live tournament for more than a $200 buy in (one time) and generally don't play for more than $60. On-line, I usually don't spend more than $5 on an entry fee, so my experience is far more limited. But more than that, I'm not even in the same league as a player as Daniel. Needless to say, it's not likely that I'll be seeing myself with one of his 4 shiny bracelets anytime soon.

But it is kind of a goal of mine. I would like to one day compete with some of the best players in the world. While I'm no where in their neighborhood as a player, I think that it would still be fun to give it a go, and see what happens. So with that in mind, I began charting my play in ring games this past week, and here are the results on my Full Tilt account:

Hands : +/-
39 $14.15
82 (-$8.00)
95 (-$4.00)
76 (-$8.00)
49 $7.85
47 $2.85
152 $10.75
102 (-$20.10)
99 $4.85
70 $2.65
139 (-$9.00)
130 (-$11.95)
98 $4.75
88 $7.05
341 $15.45
122 $2.90
196 (-$7.35)

All in all, I've played just under 2000 hands last week (1925 to be exact), and my balance is down $1.15. I've been playing at Full Tilt's lowest limit game which is .10/.20 Hold Em'. My balance would be lower if not for the fact that I've accrued enough FTP's to gather $15 in bonuses, and I also transferred $6 to play in last week's Twitter Poker Tour on Stars. So it's more like an all in all loss of $10.15 on the tables. Not so good.

It's kind of interesting to see if I can make something more of my bank roll, and if nothing else, I've had a lot of fun just playing poker. I have much smaller goals (like reaching $100), and I'll see about re-evaluating them if I'm able to get there. Anyway, I'll update this a little bit on from time to time. Maybe with some luck, I'll get to $100k before Daniel does.