September 29, 2009

THIN! (Part 16)

Standard shorty-pwning thin-ness:

Full Tilt Poker $0.50/$1 No Limit Hold'em - 8 players -
The Official Hand History Converter

UTG+1: $47.25
MP1: $109.05
MP2: $60.75
CO: $15.50
BTN: $18.85
Hero (SB): $100.00
BB: $29.80
UTG: $123.95

Pre Flop: ($1.50) Hero is SB with Kc Jc
1 fold, UTG+1 calls $1, 3 folds, BTN raises to $5, Hero raises to $17, 2 folds, BTN calls $12 (Button is a shortstacker trying to punish an EP far behind could KJs possibly be? They ARE brack cards...)

Flop: ($36.00) 4s 7s 3d (2 players)
Hero bets $3, BTN calls $1.85 all in (Not exactly the nut frop for KcJc, but I'll put in his rast $ a sick varue bet!)

Turn: ($39.70) 8h (2 players - 1 is all in)

River: ($39.70) As (2 players - 1 is all in)

Final Pot: $39.70
BTN shows Kh Th (Ace King high)
Hero shows Kc Jc (Ace King high)
Hero wins $37.75
(Rake: $1.95)

Red cards? Way behind....


September 28, 2009

September 23, 2009


So I was away from the game for about two weeks at the beginning of the month...good to take a break from things, relax, and enjoy the freedom and flexibility of being a poker player :) Went on a travel tear up to NYC, LA, Niagara Falls, Toronto, Chicago, Knoxville, and back home. Surprisingly despite bringing my laptop along for the trip...I didn't feel the urge to fire up Full Tilt.

After I came back earlier this week, I was INSTA ready to fire things up and pick up where I left off. However I definitely hit a few speedbumps in my return to the tables...which has become a pretty consistent theme when I take extended breaks. The most difficult about my game/style is striking a balance between LAG/MANIAC. IMO there is a razor thin line between the two styles and when my game starts veering towards the latter - 3 words come to mind. FML. My variance goes through the roof and then my game suffers in general. There are also alot of THIN decisions that I find myself being on the wrong side of...and if I were in the grove, I'm more confident that I would make the correct decisions.

Here's to pwning donkeys and bringing your A game!


September 21, 2009

Vegas Trip Report

Got back from Vegas last night - all in all, a very solid weekend. Boxing, gambling...only downside: a lot of us got sick (cold sick, not drunk sick), including me. All in all I managed to end up a slight winner on the weekend, up ~$400 from poker, down $100 from boxing and $150 from blackjack. Fawking blackjack.

As usual, we did all our gambling downtown (except for the boxing bets we placed at the MGM Sportsbook). This gives you great value at the brackjack table (if you get lucky, you can find $5 at Las Vegas Club's "Fetish Pit", which involves hot brackjack dealers dressed up in various uniforms (e.g., nurse, biker babe, etc.), and some scantily clad female dancing on a pole in the middle. Unfortunately it doesn't offer the best poker games - The Golden Nugget only had $1/$2 hold 'em, and while the game was obviously pretty soft, I'd imagine the $2/$5 games on the strip were much juicier.

In any case, I did play the $1/$2 games at the Nugget for a few hours. It really couldn't be any more different than the online game. Probably the most notable hand of the weekend happened in the first half hour or so of my Friday night sesh. I had been playing fairly tight while the whole table was seeing 6-way limped flops, etc.. Anyway finally I picked up 4c3c on the button and raised up a couple of limpers to $15. A couple of them called and we saw a flop which was...arr crubs!! I think it was Qc8c5c. They check to me and I bet $30, only to be min check/raised by a lady with a bunch of the money on the table (like probably $800), which I thought might be an indication that she has some clue. Enough of a clue that if I 3-bet, she'll fold everything, and if I call she'll put me on a single club or a scare one-pair and shove the turn. So I kind of played with my chips for a while and finally called. The turn paired the 8 and she shoved. I wasn't crazy about the board pairing since she could have 55 or Q8, maybe even 85, but I'm obviously not folding. I made the call and she showed a single queen, saying she didn't have a club. She just mucked her other card as the river came a 5h. Then she went on for about 5 minutes about how it was so hard for her to put me in 4c3c. I'm's not the 4 and the 3 that matter. It's the crub and the crub! If you don't want to put me on 4c3c, put me on AcJc and don't overplay your Q! All of that was in my head of course...I just told her it was a tough hand and stacked the chips.

The boxing match Saturday night was definitely well worth the trip. It wasn't a sold out show, so we moved down and ended up with seats significantly better than the ones we paid for. Which was the other side of the bad part of it not being a sellout, which was that we could only get half price for the extra ticket we had. So we basically ended up with 5 $600 seats for the price of 5.5 $300 seats. Not too bad. The Katsidis-Escobedo undercard was, as anticipated, the highest-action fight of the night.

But Floyd Mayweather was the undisputed star of the show. Say what you will about Floyd (and after some of the things he said leading up to the fight, you'd be justified to say he's an idiot), on Saturday night you got to see an all-time great at the peak of his powers. It was the kind of performance that I will put with getting to see Jordan play for the Bulls, and getting to see Pedro pitch for the Red Sox, in the category of truly spectacular athletes I have gotten to see in person. Sure, Floyd did have a size advantage (although according to the ESPN measurements, Marquez has a longer reach than Floyd). But if you made a list of all the fighters in the world that could take the fight at 147 lbs (Justin and I tried to do this), you'd be hard-pressed come up with 10 that would be liver dogs than JMM. Here are the ones I can think of (no particular order):


1. Pacquiao
2. Cotto
3. Mosley
4. Paul Williams
5. Andre Berto
6. Josh Clottey


1. Tim Bradley
2. Devon Alexander
3. Margarito
4. Luis Collazo

I don't think you can really make a case for anyone else, although if you want to, feel free. I haven't seen Sergei Dzindziruk fight, nor do I know if he could make 147, so maybe him. I don't think Sergio Martinez could safely make 147. Even putting Paul Williams on the list is questionable. Among the guys I've listed here, Clottey, Collazo, Bradley, Alexander, and Williams are complete non-starters because they can't bring any fans to the table and therefore don't offer Mayweather as big a paycheck for a fight. That leaves Mosley, Cotto, Pac-Man, Margarito, and Berto. Throw out Margarito because he's still not even licensed to fight in the US. That leaves four feasible guys that Mayweather could have picked that would have been tougher fights for his comeback, two of which (Cotto and Pacquiao) are fighting in November, a fight whose winner Floyd will probably face next year in a megafight. So just keep that in mind when you hear people talk about Floyd cherry-picking opponents. Sure, he could have come back against Mosley, a much tougher fight for probably not much more money than he made vs. Marquez. But it's not like Marquez is some tomato can. He's ranked #2 pound-for-pound in the world, has gone toe-to-toe with Pacquiao twice in fights that many thought he won. Even coming up in weight, he has to be considered among the top 10-15 people in the world for Mayweather to face.

And Floyd completely dominated him. Totally and absolutely. Watch any other Marquez fights and then compare it to this one. Watch his fights against Pacquiao, or against Juan Diaz or Joel Casamayor. I have seen all those fights and can tell you that Marquez deserved every bit of his #2 p4p status. He is a very accurate combination puncher and a skilled and experienced boxer. Floyd made him look like an amateur. Floyd stood right in front of him as Marquez threw whiffing combinations. Floyd landed jab after jab and peppered Marquez with counter right hands and left hooks. He landed 290/493 of his punches for 59%. Marquez landed 69 of 583 for 12 percent. Of course the weight difference helped Floyd, but it's not as if they were trading bombs all night and Floyd's power and chin were the difference.

Marquez showed great heart to make it the whole 12, although some of that has to be attributed to Floyd not really going all-out to get the KO. I had bet the late-round KO, so of course I was disappointed that didn't happen.

It's OK to be frustrated with Floyd for not fighting Mosley and for not trying harder to KO Marquez. But at the same time, you can't take anything away from his boxing skill. He's the #1 p4p fighter in the world, and he should be considered a significant favorite in any fight he takes next, whether it be Pacquiao, Cotto, or Mosley. If he wants to be considered a true top 20 all-time pound-for-pound fighter in the conversation with Sugar Ray Leonard, for instance, he'll have to take those fights and win them. If not, he's merely the greatest fighter in the game today, and a wonder to watch.


A Case of the Mondays (Part 5)



September 17, 2009

Vegas Here I Come!

Tomorrow morning I'll be up early driving out to Vegas for the Mayweather/Marquez fight. I'm really looking forward to it - should be a great fight in the main event, with a couple of very nice undercards. Anybody else going to be in Vegas for the fight? I definitely encourage all SpritPot readers to get the PPV or watch the card at your local movie theater.

I'm sure I will try and hit the tables at some point, but I'll be with a group of guys so not sure when I'll be able to negotiate a few hours away from the crew to pwn some live donkeys. More likely there will be hours and hours of low stakes brackjack with the free drinks flowing like wine.


P.S.: Anybody watching the PAD cash game this week and last? Did you need further conclusive evidence that Howard Lederer is a donk/durrrr is a beast?

September 16, 2009


It's been a middling run at the tables for me recently but every once in a while I still play a hand well. I think this was one of them:

Full Tilt Poker $0.50/$1 No Limit Hold'em - 9 players -
The Official Hand History Converter

BTN: $120.05
SB: $198.05
Hero (BB): $113.00
UTG: $178.65
UTG+1: $68.55
UTG+2: $135.75
MP1: $20.30
MP2: $49.00
CO: $37.85

Pre Flop: ($1.50) Hero is BB with 5h 4h
4 folds, MP2 calls $1, 3 folds, Hero checks

Flop: ($2.50) 3h Th Kh (2 players)
Hero bets $2.50, MP2 calls $2.50 (Frop a cards though. Generally I like to lead in these spots because it's hard to get much value out of a check/raise, often it gets checked through, and since it's a limped pot, I have to start building it now to get his stack. Also if another heart comes my hand kinda sucks.)

Turn: ($7.50) Jd (2 players)
Hero bets $14, MP2 calls $14 (Here's the interesting decision. With the Jd on the turn, I think his calling range is very inelastic to my bet size. That is, if he's gonna call, it doesn't matter what I bet. And there are a lot of hands that he's gonna not want to fold, like any Ah, any Qh, KQ, QJ, JT, a big bet gets called just as often as a small bet, and it sets up a pot-sized river shove.)

River: ($35.50) 9d (2 players)
Hero bets $35.50, MP2 calls $31.50 all in (BOOM goes the dynamite!)

Final Pot: $98.50
Hero shows 5h 4h (a flush, King high)
MP2 mucks Qs Ks (Huge suckout by me, obv...he had SPADES!!!)
Hero wins $95.50
(Rake: $3.00)


September 14, 2009

New CR Vid Today

My new CardRunners video is up today. It's the first video in a five-part series about combatting shortstackers. So there will be a video every Monday for the next five weeks. Apologies again to those who don't have a CR membership. But if you do, please give it a look and leave a comment and rating letting me know what you think.


A Case of the Mondays (Part 4)

My favorite standup comedian...enjoy!


September 11, 2009

Back from Vacation!

Just got back from NY. A friend of mine got married last weekend upstate, so we scheduled a few days in the city around it. Does anything beat the Big Apple? I've been all over the world, and I'm gonna go with a no. For its energy, dynamism, intelligence, rapacity, and beauty, I think you just can't beat it.

We saw a couple of Broadway shows, the best of which was God of Carnage. Jeff Daniels and James Gandolfini in a witty comedy involving a whole bunch of power plays/marriage commentary. Good stuff.

Wednesday night we ate at one of the better restaurants I've ever been to, Eleven Madison Park. I made the reservation about a month ago after reading a glowing NYT review, and it was well worth it. It may seem crazy to call an $88 Prix Fixe dinner a bargain, but it really is.

Anyway, I'm back in town now, with a lot of work to do. Gotta get back to pwning the tables, hopefully it'll be a good weekend!


September 1, 2009

Yer Gonna Rove My Nuts! (Part 10)

Not much comment on this one...just your standard call 3b/OOP float c-bet with gutter for 1/2 your stack/shove turn...

Full Tilt Poker $50.00 No Limit Hold'em - 8 players -
The Official Hand History Converter

UTG: $8.50
UTG+1: $63.35
MP1: $92.05
MP2: $22.30
CO: $62.70
BTN: $33.40
SB: $47.75
Hero (BB): $50.75

Pre Flop: ($0.75) Hero is BB with Ah Ac
1 fold, UTG+1 raises to $2, 4 folds, SB calls $1.75, Hero raises to $8.50, 1 fold, SB calls $6.50

Flop: ($19.00) 5h Jd 9h (2 players)
SB checks, Hero bets $14.00, SB calls $14

Turn: ($47.00) 7c (2 players)
SB bets $25.25, Hero calls $25.25

River: ($97.50) Js (2 players)

Final Pot: $97.50
SB shows Td 7d
Hero shows Ah Ac
Hero wins $94.50
(Rake: $3.00)