Monday, March 29, 2010


I know some give me grief for entering such a donkament, but, hey, you gotta play within your bankroll.

Gotta love the profit!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Exercise in futility? My Mohegan Sun NAPT satellite jaunt.

I tend to like live satellites...I have a great record in them. Two Borgata Poker open Main Event Sats, one $500K Guarantee Borgata sat, one Foxwoods Poker Classic Main Event Sat...overall my rate of entry is around 70%. Maybe it's my acting background that gives the satellite some appeal. A satellite is an audition...the event you go into is a callback.

My percentage went down today.

Saturday approached and well, I'm not Jewish, and had nothing to do, so Bonnie and I decided to go up the 2 hr trek to Mohegan. She would shop and I would enter the NAPT 'Step 1 Satellite.' why Step 1? Well, this $230 satellite earns you a ticket into a $1000 Step 2 and THAT satellite earns you a seat...a new format for me, but no matter. Onward!

Well, we get there, and Mohegan is a shitshow. Packed. I mean, to the gills. We hear there is a show going on at the arena later, but I'm running late so I head to the convention center. More on the event later.

So, I stroll in...nice setup. Nice, open, clean space. A $600 buy-in event is currently going, sit-n-go satellites forming, and us, the Step 1 stragglers. The Step 1 attracts 56 so 11 get a Step 1 ticket. Cool, I thought, no problem. 20 minute blinds, escalating antes...a slight impediment. But still, seems doable.

Well, maybe a slight problem. Despite two full houses(which chipped me up from our original 6,000 to about 11K), I become the victim of my first royal flush...a FLOPPED Royal Flush, against my three Aces. I had this guy covered, but he played it masterfully, and I walked right into it. This crippled me with about 28 left, and when we got to 300-600-75, I had only 3800 left and had to shove with my first sensible hand, a2s sooted UTG. I would've been even more crippled a hand later, so I figured, let's see what happens. 1 caller at UTG+1, he flips over AQos. Two spades on the flop - hope! But I don't make it and I'm gone.

I meet Bonnie and we head to Bar Americain,t he Bobby Flay joint. Unimpressive lamb chops but we NOW learn that none other than Bon Jovi is playing tonight! No wonder it was crowded(and no wonder the quality of some of the attendees)! Bonnie was very sad that she would yet again miss another major concert(she got shafted out of Aerosmith some months back) and this true BJ fan would have to miss this too. A quick drive back...and that's the story!

I felt I played just about as well as I did at Foxwoods last week. In all truth, I played the three aces badly. With three diamonds on the board I shouldn't have played them so was a bad play. I could have waited for a better shot...I didn't. Of course, I hate analyzing this, but it's the only way you get better.

But I have not given up hope on the NAPT...I am on Step 3 of the PokerStars step sats. Can I finish in the top 2 for three more sit-n gos! YES WE CAN.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Bad Mookie, good Ferguson

Well, I final tabled the Mookie but again it was not to be.

However....the evening proved to be interesting. I have been campaigning for the resurrection of the leaderboard and I am now in touch with Ben, and it seems I will be able to help him out.

A good thing I stuck around...BuddyDank and the ragtag band of fugitives still awake as the Mookie closed proposed a 'last shorter' in the $1 Ferguson HORSE, with everyone contributing $5 to the person out first. Now, considering it's all fixed limit, there is some strategy involved. I simply hit the worst possible hands with some other people calling courageously, and I was out in first. This pt me in touch with AlCantHang, who was participating, and since I met him at the Borg once or twice before, it was nice to reconnect with him. I even offered to blog for him somewhere...who knows, maybe my writing background will bear some fruit after all these years.

The mystery of the night...what happened to Jordan? he signed in and blinded out...FYI Jordan, you got a full house while absent that kept you around until you bubbled the final table! So, even're 'that guy.'

Thursday, March 18, 2010

My Foxwoods Poker Classic Experience

I felt a bit of a degenerate driving alone to Foxwoods by Zipcar, but my two traveling companions bailed, so off I went to scenic Ledyard, CT, home of the looming behemoth that casts a shadow on the Connecticut countryside, Foxwoods Casino and Resort. I had never been to the FPC before, but a comfortable $200 by-in with 40 min levels seemed alluring enough.

Let's start with the fabled WPT Poker Room at Foxwoods, where I played a little warm-up NLHE before the tourney began. First off, it is huge - I think it has to be bigger than the Borgata, but to get there you go down some stairs, and while some tables are exposed to the atrium way above, some are hidden away in low-ceilinged little lairs that are just plain cramped. Plus, it's mayhem down there. Nothing seems particularly organized, and it is LOUD. The sound travels up to the atrium and just bounces around willy-nilly. I lost about $15 and then it was time to head over to the Grand Ballroom where the event would take place.

This ballroom was ugly, stale and largely unattractive, but certainly quieter. And talk about a quiet starting seemed no one uttered a word for the first 30 minutes. I was the only one wearing St. Patty's day green, so they certainly weren't the festive sort.

So, everything up until the dinner break was pretty garden-variety. Caught some good hands and played tight aggressive and chipped my original 5,000 up to about 12K. I think I might have called two PFR the whole afternoon, but then right before the dinner break things got interesting.

22 in the BB. 3 limpers, I check. Flop comes 2 -6-8, two spades. Now, I'm at about 11K here, and blinds are now 400-800-50. So, I shove. If someone wants to chase those spades, they'll have to pay for it. I quickly get an all-in for less. DOINK! Crap, what could he have? He flips over 2-8. The turn is a 6 that gives me a boat, and I'm suddenly on a 20 K stack.

Now here is where, effectively, I should have left the tournament. Still 400-800-50, I raise UTG with AA to 2600. This way too light a bet for this table, and I knew it the second I put it out there. I didn't want anyone to catch anything on the flop, but I wanted to extract some value too. A guy across from me who is a self-proclaimed cash player calls sheepishly, and I put him on a connector of some kind, and well...that's exactly what he had.

Flop comes J-10-x and I've seen enough. I fire out 5K and he immediately shoves over the top. So, of course, I'm fucked here, he's got J-10, and I'm suddenly feeling like I'd rather go back downstairs to the poker room and play some O8. Although I think he has two pair, he could just as easily be bullying me around with A-J, or KK, QQ, so I call for all my chips and he tables J-10. Then, like a bolt of lightning from the sky....turn is a 7. River is a 7, and I get the better two pair. This guy took it well, but obviously tilted. He shoved the rest of his chips with someting like Q-7os and was gone the next hand.

So, I was comfortable for a bit with 45K, but the blinds were escalating. After dinner I noticed that my new table was kind of short stacked, so I went into small-ball mode, firing at almost anything marginal and met my quota of about 60% folding around. This got me up to about 85K and then I went card dead completely...I mean, not even playable smallball hands. Some might argue that any hand is a playable small ball hand, but we're talking 9-2, 8-3, 7-2....for at least a good level I saw no face cards. So things start to get dicey again. We're at 4000-8000-400 and my M is dwindling. So starts my shove fest. Uncontested, I shoved with these hands unopened during the next level


People were getting sick of me, but no one would contest, which is really what I sorely needed. I didn't want to just cash this fucker, I wanted to go deep(28K first prize) but no one bit, not once. Then I went cold again, but judging from the tables breaking down I saw the bubble looming. Could I hold on to at least go home with something? Fuck that, I said. Who cares about the bubble. And those words, dear readers, is just how I roll.

I'm at about 5BB and I pretty much have to shove with any two, so I do that. Q10s came and I shoved, another short stack tables a8, and I don[t get there. Bang. 12 out of the money.

For over 700 runners I wasnt upset with my play, but I have to say it was especially harrowing and taxing. I've played many smaller tournaments and big events, but this experience was especially exhausting for some reason. I think that people are jyst plain getting better. As I shifted tables and went deeper, the play was pretty tough..tougher than I experienced in AC or Vegas. I've still not made a big cash in a big event(my ONLY cash coming at the Borgata Winter Open two years ago) although as the smaller tournaments go, in the about 15 tournaments I've played in a 3 yr period in AC and Vegas, I've cashed in 5 of them, and won 2 of them. Granted, that is just simply not enough tournaments to play for a decent result, and I've estimated my ROI to be at about 2-3%.

In today's aftermath I don't want to see a deck of cards or a poker table for a week. But just a week. I'll come back refreshed and ready to kick some ass at a later date.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Holy Crapballs. Bad Beat of the Year.

Read it and weep. Mookie madness.

Full Tilt Poker The Mookie No Limit Hold'em Tournament - t20/t40 Blinds - 8 players - View hand 581841

The Official Hand History Converter

bayne_s (UTG): t2895 M = 48.25

pvanharibo (UTG+1): t3785 M = 63.08

Hero (MP1): t3000 M = 50

hoyazo (MP2): t2565 M = 42.75

NumbBono (CO): t2855 M = 47.58

Pig2dpen (BTN): t3640 M = 60.67

JOELPOKERGOD (SB): t5465 M = 91.08

Schaubs (BB): t2795 M = 46.58

Pre Flop: (t60) Hero is MP1 with 4 of hearts 5 of hearts

1 fold, pvanharibo raises to t120, Hero calls t120, 5 folds

Flop: (t300) 5 of spades 4 of diamonds 4 of spades (2 players)

pvanharibo checks, Hero bets t240, pvanharibo calls t240

Turn: (t780) 7 of clubs (2 players)

pvanharibo checks, Hero checks

River: (t780) 3 of clubs (2 players)

pvanharibo bets t600, Hero raises to t1800, pvanharibo raises to t3425 all in, Hero calls t840 all in

Final Pot: t6060

pvanharibo shows 5 of diamonds 5 of clubs (a full house, Fives full of Fours)

Hero mucks 4 of hearts 5 of hearts

pvanharibo wins t6060

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Been a while...

..I've been a bit overworked and underpaid, and with the snow, LOST episodes, and lack of proper funding, I haven't been playing much live.

In live poker, I've been stacked off in two consecutive sessions with dumb plays on my part. So, that's about $400 in the can. Onlne has been equally unimpressive cash-wise, with my early PS cash advantage dwindlin down to almost even. In short, I haven't been running all that well. A bright spot prompts my entry today...


It was nice to put a little old=fashioned solid play to use and get it down to three handed.

I'm debating heading to AC with the GF this weekend to do this Caesar's tournament. I know, it sounds cheesy, right? It's going on in tandem with the Circuit Event, at the tail end, and it's been advertised on a lot of financial publications, so I'm thinking it might attract a soft crowd, plus a frustrated crowd from the busted Circuit Main Event. The big advantage is that the deal can all go on your credit card, and since I'm sometimes irresponsible like that, I'm about 70/30 sure I will make the trip. For $674 you get the buy-in and a room at Caesar's...of course if I don't cash I'd be mighty pissed.