Tuesday, September 30, 2008

3 things...


As was requested by some peeps after I put out my 6-tabling video, I'll be putting out a small series of 4 videos where I play 10nl through 100nl 6max in hopes of showing players how to beat their respective stakes. ~30 minute videos per stake in which I'll be two-tabling while talking about the hands I play and the general strategy I think you should adopt. Should be fun.

I've already finished 10nl and 25nl today and I think I'll do the other two tomorrow.


I won't be playing any more poker today. Why? Because the new Brothers in Arms game is out and I want to pop some tops.


Best month ever. I've done too much bragging already, so this is it for September:

Biggest winning pot:

Biggest losing pot:

My only real goal from last month was to play more hands. I'm really not hating myself that much for playing what I did. I'm only 4-tabling and occasionally 6-tabling, and I'm thinking about poker like I never have before. My biggest strides in my game have been from this month and August. I do think I could plug more hands and I'll see if I can do so in the coming months, but honestly I'm happy plugging 15k-20k hands monthly and doing what I'm doing now.

Plans for the future include treating myself to some new shit, including a reclining leather loveseat for my room and probably some clothes. I own about 50 white and black tees, a pair of khakis and a pair of ripped up jeans. It's about time for some new stuff. I think long-term I'm going to stick around at 200nl for a good 50k hands minimum and see how that goes. If I maintain anything over 5ptbb/100 I'll probably start taking shots at 400nl.

Monday, September 29, 2008

1151 hands

I remember falling asleep last night thinking about my play, and thinking there was really only one hand I felt I played poorly. AK stacked from EP vs a tag. Aside from that, I played well, ran extremely well again, and couldn't be happier.

Obviously I've been running hotter than the sun, but I do feel (when I'm not tilting) I'm playing a very good game which definitely contributes to my winnings. My NSD winnings are on a steady incline for the month and just at the tables I feel like I'm really running them over the majority of the time. Running 24/22 which is also a lot of fun :)

Yesterday was especially fun though. I ran into a fish or two who were just terrible. One guy at first just seemed bluffy and bad, but soon started tilting after losing some pots to the point where...



All three against said fish. Within 270 hands I'd made like 1200, and about $1400 total on the day.

More nomnoms

Same guy as above, weak tagfish.

Floaty hand against a good tight aggressive regular. Kind of interesting.

Easy to start second-guessing yourself in spots like these, but this guy is pretty lag and even right after losing I'm pretty happy with a stack there.

AK hand against the tag. Not a fan of stacking here even though my image was like 30/30.

One more I could have made a bad call on, and probably did. I think there are enough smaller flushes, trips and straights in his range to make the call, but it's close. His terrible slowplay certainly earned him the max this time - it's got to work once in a while or else they learn and start playing correctly :)

Sunday, September 28, 2008

1,758 hands

Another swingy one. I definitely tilted for a good 200-400 hands or so, but I was running pretty bad too. My biggest problems were playing oop against aggressive fish who fuck with me on like every flop I cbet (and naturally I try to cbet more, duh), and also playing deep with a pretty tough lag while on tilt from the former.

Villain had just sat down at the table, and after checking my HEM database and finding out he's a 40/30 over a good sample, I decide it's good enough to ship. He stuck around and was obviously very drunk with all his table chatter, but it was a pretty big pain in the ass playing against him oop. Basically in a situation like that it forces you to nit it up which I hate doing.

Against the toughish lag. If you read the HA on cc/stox then you know I called the river, which imo is terrible. I'm stopping it at that point though because I want to hide the results. Still a little undecided about the hand, but I'm leaning towards betting the flop, and check-calling the turn since his range is so chock-full of floats.

Kind of marginal hand. Tough to get away from given my image and the fact that the 4bettor is pretty good and can be in there with some JJ/AQs hands as well as the occasional bluff. A little optimistic but I don't think I can let that one go.

Fuck you, fish! Top of his range, meh.

Against that good lag, this is after I got stacked by him though. Nice result, turned my frown upside down!

Against a decent tag. Easy when you flop a set on a board you can rep a bluff-raise with, but it could definitely get a little tougher on rag boards or Axx/Kxx/Qxx boards.

Aaand that's it. -$200 or something on the session, thought I played pretty well aside from the tilting and the AKs hand, and there's always room for improvement.

Friday, September 26, 2008

2,126 hands

And the ball keeps rolling

I've been bragging incessantly and I think I'll save it for the end-of-month review, but this is just getting insane. That debate about going for fewer tables and increased improvement vs playing a kajillion tables and going for lots and lots of rakeback and rewards is definitely a legit one. I've thought a lot about that the last month or two and have yet to make a decision; right now though I'm perfectly happy playing 4 (or occasionally 6) tables now with my 24/22 style. I've improved the most in my newly found niche in 6max than I ever did before, and the results reflect that.

My only qualm is that I'm still playing a dismal number of hands, but a lot of that is a result of playing so few tables as well as the fact that my real life has been crazy busy lately. I could definitely plug more hands. Hell, I could just abandon sleeping if I really felt like it, but I don't think it would be healthy. I'm in a nice balance right now with my poker playing time, my cash flow and my real life. Aside from a few problems here and there I'd say my life is pretty damn good right now.

Enough bragging; here are some of the more interesting hands since my last post:

Wow. Checking my biggest pots lost, I don't even have a full stacked one. Biggest is $156, then $120, then $100 and under.

One of the many reasons squeezing dominated hands like AT is a dumdum move.

Gotta let them have one once in a while or they stop coming back :)

om nom nom

That was in my 6-tabling video actually. Villain is a reg.

Tight pf stats + superlow fold to any postflop street + super high wtsd = valuetown him!

AK high ftw!

That's about it, tons more coolers and flips I won, nothing too interesting. Last hand there is kind of a fun one I guess, but most of the hands are just boring to watch tbh. I'll be coming out with another video, next time 4-tabling for the forums, both cardschat and stoxpoker.

edit: oooh by the way, next thing on this consumer's list is a reclining leather loveseat :) Pics when/if I get it.

More mgmt, I'm just obsessed with these guys right now. Weeeeird youtuber video though:

Saturday, September 20, 2008

4,277 hands

lol swongaments

The hands I've played since my last post have been my swingiest ever. Two days where I dropped nearly a grand, then clawed back to bring myself back to even at 4 in the morning. I'm not going to post another long, drawn-out thing about how ignoring your results is key and how I have yet to master that, but as you can tell I was tilted by my swinging so much so fast that I couldn't help but cringe at the $1000 swings.

The good:

The bad:

The ugly:

I could go on...

But overall it's been fun. The challenge of controlling your tilt and sticking to at least your B+ game is always hard. At least the frustration of variance is making me plug more hands. I played some of my longest days yesterday and the day before, and today was a good ~1000 hands too.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

323 hands

Just a reminder - it's not about the results, but about how well you played. I lost half a buyin today but I felt I played great and ended the session with a smile on my face.

Fun wa/wb calldown against a pretty aggro player. I didn't have many hands on him though which made it a little more marginal.

"Let's see those jacks, let's see 'em!!!", and he did.

Against a hugely aggressive (and as I later learned, stationy) player who had fucked with every single one of my cbets up to this point, so I decided to take a stand. Didn't work. I think I probably should have basically waited for a hand before getting some money in. This guy just wasn't going to believe me unless I showed him a hand. Raising 52o pf knowing your opponent is going to mess with you isn't the best idea either.

I can think of a few more hands I played poorly, but in smaller pots. Taking the 'make mistakes, but learn from them' road rather than the 'play the same and never improve' one is much much better in my mind though. I've been trying some new lines and experimenting a little which is always fun, but definitely not always profitable.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

A hand and a song

Because I'm lazy.

Villain has %100 vpip after less than 1 orbit and that's all I know.

And an unfortunately unembeddable song from mgmt.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Mid-month review

Month started slowly but I've been playing more and more. Will hopefully reach platinum again this month, though I kind of doubt it. At least the results are still good. Started a session this morning before realizing I had a shitload of stuff to do and ended it early. One big hand:

New to the table, but with hands on everyone. CO is a huge fish that the BTN, a solid regular, will no doubt be isolating crazy-wide. I'm not sure what the real line is here since there's no dynamic yet between me and the BTN and I can't really expect him to be 4betting me that wide. It just feels so weak 3betting and folding to a 4bet in an ideal 4betting position.

Monday, September 15, 2008

1,125 hands


First time in a while too. After contacting Hunter of stoxpoker about coaching and getting some advice to drop down a couple limits and play HU for hand-reading experience, I first went to a 50nl table. My opponent was very loose and very passive. I never won a 'big' (see >20bb pot), lost a full stack in a FH < quads cooler and still managed to clean him out for somewhere under a buyin. Decided to move up to 100nl. Found one huge fish and one decent player who I thought I still had an edge on, and two tabled them.

Long story short, they both caught some cards, I ran bad bluffs, tilted, ran worse bluffs, and lost lots. I was as low as about -$500 at one point, but after the fish hit n run on his last hand, I cleared my head and started to play well against the better player. Only about -$200 on the day, and I'm still not happy about tilting. I think as long as I have an ego and have some respect for money, there will always be the possibility of me tilting. It's always a challenge to try and level my head out though when I am steaming, and I'm glad I did it well today (albeit a little too late).

I do have to say that Hunter was right though - it improves your hand reading skills like no other game can. Value betting ace high and bottom pair in 3 bet pots can feel pretty sexy. Next time I have to make sure I don't multitable though, it's just too quick at the moment and puts me in exponential tilt when I run bad.

Some of the hands. Keep in mind HU is obviously a very read-dependent game. Also keep in mind a lot of this is just bad :)





Don't ask me why I'm raising someone who won't fold middle pair...thank god for the turn.

Those are most of the bigger ones, I'm sure there were tons of other interesting spots but I didn't manage to mark them in between the crazy-fast HU hands.

Looking forward to hitting up the 6max tables tomorrow and logging another solid day to get me back on track.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

883 hands

Posted this one in the forums, still not sure what the best line is. I'm thinking since there are a ton of draws I want to charge, but at the same time I think there are a good number of bluffs in his range that I want to keep in so they can barrel me. Also of course legit hands make up a decent part of his range, not sure if there are enough of them to make me want to fold.

I like the double barrel. Villain is like a 21/19 tag, I think most of his range on the flop is pocket pairs that just can't continue on the K turn. Looks like he floated me with AK or hit a set...well that or he slowplayed AA on me.

Not sure of the best line here. This one was in a video for Stosh so I'll get some nice feedback on it which will help. We're a little deep and I was debating on the flop whether I wanted to ch-r and barrel the turn or bet-3bet or bet-shove the flop. Not sure what tilted my decision but as played I don't think I'm ever getting him to fold the river so I shut down.

Villain is a huge fish, pretty bluffy, and very aggro. I like my isolation but the call of his limp-raise is a little sloppy. I actually don't like my postflop play either, I like just raising the flop to try and fold out 88-QQ and set up a nice turn shove. Turned out well though, I guess that's what happens when you're a lucksack.

Fun calldown vs a massively aggressive fishy-ish player. He's like 30/26 or something, never folds to 3bets and barrels so often it makes baby jesus cry. I guess his bluff here has some merit since I'm probably floating him often, plus on the river the draw's missed so meh. He's still a fish though :)

Fun spot. I'd been very aggressive taking lots of pots down, also making small cbets against fish to get a better price. Villain here is a good reg who was no doubt paying attention and I put out a smaller bet to make him think I was doing the same thing since it's such an obvious cbetting flop. Worked perfectly, got my ch-r bluff out of him that I wanted but unfortunately he didn't have KQ or a flush draw or whatever.

So things are good. Aunt is getting better, but it's obviously going to be a long, drawn-out process. My mom's business is still going slow, but her boyfriend, my step-dad, has been working a very high-paying construction job for the last few months and we're getting caught-up with our debt. As you can tell from my incessant bragging, I'm also doing very well. Bankroll is growing daily, often in $300-$500 chunks, and I'm feeling very comfortable at the tables.

I have more money flowing than I ever have in my life and it's actually to the point where I don't know what to do with it. Aside from letting my roll grow and moving up in limits (won't touch 400nl for a long time mind you), I'm thinking I'll grab some more stuff from Ikea since it's so damn cheap (leather loveseat and a new cupboard/shelve thingy). I've also been thinking about getting into a boxing gym or something and getting myself back into shape.

Some other stuff on the list includes coaching for Tygran (I hope he doesn't mind me mentioning this), and possibly getting a deucescracked subscription on top of my stox one.

Yeesh, looks like I'll be dropping a lot of dough in the near future...

Thursday, September 11, 2008

880 hands

Interesting session, and a very profitable one again. Just going to drop some plop some hands on you since I don't have much else to talk about.

First, some 4bet pots:

Unknown who just sat down. I'd guesstimate that more than half the time a 3bet from a new player at the table is a solid player trying to set his image down. I guess this time he had a hand :)

Flippedy doo dah. I'd been stealing this guy's blinds like crazy and had 3bet light quite a few times. These hands get it in no matter what, but I think I had him shoving a much wider range than that and the big pairs.

I run so good. Villain's stats here after <50 hands suggested he was a good lagtag - something like 24/20, and a player like that is 3betting crazy light in a spot like that, so I took a shot. Postflop I decided I was probably playing for stacks, but had to play it wa/wb.

Villain was a 75/25/kajillion fish and although stacking TP looks fishy I'm miles ahead of his range. Funnily enough not only does he have the very top of his range, but I suck out :) That kids, is how to run good.

Bah. This guy ate me up. He was a huge fish, and barring one bad hero call I made for a >PSB with A9-high, he basically ran ridiculously well against me and just couldn't lose. Being oop against him sucked too.

Just ch-f right? Villain is a 40/10 fish, not sure I fold anything I beat here or get called by worse. Bah.

Another fish who had my number. He hit and run after this, little c***.

That was the one thing that got me a little steamy last night. I was trying to record my last video for Stosh and I remember saying "ok Stosh, well now you get to witness me try to cool myself off" before taking some long deep breaths, lol. It was fine though, I was sitting at plenty of fishy tables and got my money in good. Can't do much better than that. Another $500 day is nice too, I'm damn near at last month's (best month ever for me) total and I've only played like 4k hands.

In the back of my mind I keep expecting an 'inevitable' downswing, which is of course absurd. Swings, both up and down, are nothing but the product of our pattern-obsessed minds. Play good, and on average, you'll run well. Play bad, and on average you'll run bad. Stosh's comments in his most recent video review really boosted my confidence, maybe too much. He basically said "I know you say you're running well, but you're playing great too. It looks like you'll crush 200nl and are set to beat up the mid limits". Fistpump. No seriously, I fistpumped when I heard that. Then I gave myself a high five.

In other news, I think I have a fucking broken pixel! WTF!

I opted not to get the extended warranty and I'm not sure the 'standard' warranty will cover this...scared as shit. Right now I'm running a dead pixel sweep or something, it's an annoying TV distortion-looking window I need to keep over the dead pixel for a good hour. Wish me luck :(

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

1,800 hands

Still going slow as fuck, but I can't really do much about it. I finally kind of slapped myself in the face and realized I needed to make a schedule for when I should be playing based around when I'll be taking care of my grandma. Several days a week she goes to an old folks centre type thing, and so naturally those are the days I should be plugging as many hands in as I can. I could play poker while she's here, but it's a little inconsiderate leaving her downstairs by herself all day and just dropping her lunch in front of her at noon.

Another thing that's been keeping the progress down at a snail's pace is that I'm sick. It's getting a little better, but bad enough in the past week that I even when I had time to play, I just couldn't sit there and play. I was getting headaches, sinus pains, my nose was running like a tap, and I was hacking up green shit all day. Not pleasant. Been trying to eat healthy and drink lots of water and it seems to be helping.

Even with the lack of hands, I'm still on pace for my best month ever. Trying not to pay too much attention to the results since I'm just running wayyy above expectation, but I'm feeling really good about my play right now. My tilt has been knocked down a few levels and my game is constantly progressing. I really feel like I can crush 200nl and although I know I shouldn't jump up for a long time, I'm already thinking about 400nl. It's all still pretty surreal to me.

I'm not really sure I could say any single event or influence is 'the' catalyst for me. Stosh's coaching has boosted my confidence like crazy; every time he reviews a video he says my hand reading is great and he only finds a few small mistakes throughout the sessions. I guess it's easy not to tilt when you're running as good as I am, but I've still run into some pretty nasty strings of beats and haven't tilted a bit.

I'm trying not to bloat my head too much though, obviously the rate I've been winning is far and above sustainable, but I do think I can beat 200nl over the long run. And that's nothing to gawk at. We'll just have to see how it all turns out in the long run though.

Speaking of Stosh's coaching, I just got my third hour and second video done with him. I posted it here at cardschat.

Hmm, otherwise nothing much is happening. I finally saw the Dark Knight and although I'm already a little sick of it after watching it like 3 times including an imax showing, it's still definitely in my top 10 or 5 movies of all time. I didn't really know or care much for Heath Ledger before I saw his part, but god damn he was great. Definitely every hilight in the movie included him. From the pencil magic trick to his "c'mon, c'mon HIT ME...I want you to hit me, c'mon c'mon...", he was just 10/10 imo. Two things I didn't like about the movie though: 1) it was just a little too long, and 2) I just can't stand Maggie Gyllenhaal, the old-lady looking chick. Just such a terrible choice for 'the girl' in the movie. Can you really say a billionaire who can bring the whole russian ballet down through the carribean on his personal yacht at the snap of a finger is going to go for a girl like that? Come on...

Anyways, as you can tell I'm a little obsessed with the movie now :)

Just for kicks, here are some of the bigger hands (wee, hand replayer is working again?) from this month as I'm sure I've bored you to death already:

BTN was ~44/10, SB was a huge fish. I really don't like my shove as I don't think the button 4bets with anything he's folding, and our AKs is absolutely dominated by that range.

Online poker is so dead.

I actually laughed this one off. Glad I don't go apeshit and break shit any more.


Off to the races...little bit of a boring hand I guess :/

Definitely one of the hands I asked Stosh about. He actually missed this one in my video and now that I think about it I just asked him this morning (or was it last night?) if he would take a look.

om nom nom

Inducing bluffs is fun. Got a lot more than I expected out of this guy since he was actually really tight. I think maybe that's the result of playing borderline maniacal on some tables, people just go nuts trying to beat you.

I'm so good. Seriously though I thought I could barrel him off tons of hands here, apparently I was wrong. PERFECT river card to save my ass though.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

611 hands

...and another crazy day.  This is just surreal to me.

After finishing what seemed like a pretty solid session, I started looking through holdem manager for hands to post, and noticed I'd won another $670.  I'm running fucking 30ptbb/100 this month, and 11 since the beginning of August.  Just insane.  I'm not sure I've ever run this good over this many hands in ptbb, and that includes going way back to 25nl.

Recorded last night's session for Stosh and I'll be sending it to him some time today.  Of course once he sends me his reply I'll post them both for you guys.

Some hands from yesterday:

Against a guy who looked like a 21/17, but was going nuts that session. Must have had a huge beat before I sat down or something.

Just noticing the hand replayer is hiding my cards for some reason. meh. This was against a floaty type player. What a perfect river.

A little bit of a dicey calldown, but I think it was actually ok.  I'd been 3betting this guy like crazy because he opens so wide, and this was the first hand he fought back with. I've also really underrepresented my hand. I look like I have AK/AQ etc here almost always after checking the turn (which may have been a mistake), so his bluffing frequency is going to skyrocket.

He called the flop really quickly (which to me is either a monster or a complete float, usually the latter) and took just as little time on the turn, which made me think. This is exactly what a made marginal hand like 9s will do, and I was really surprised he'd checked so fast with a float. His river bet didn't make much sense to me though - I look like I have ace high, rarely an overpair, and he basically 3/4 pots it. If he's got a monster like a set or 99, he wants me to call with marginal hands like a weak ten or even ace-high. Betting that large just didn't add up to me, so I called. Thoughts?

Was scared shitless here. SB is a nit, BTN I wasn't worried about, but I don't have much experience playing deep and really wasn't sure if I should be stacking there. Wasn't even sure about the pf amounts.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

New toy

Still haven't played a session today, but I'm about to hop on it right after this post.  Don't exactly want a repeat (hands-wise at least) of last month.  I think I'll make a video out of it and ship that to Stosh too.

My new $440 toy beside her twin sister:

It doesn't seem like much difference from my acer/samsung combo, but now that the resolutions and sizes are the same I think it will be much easier to use.  Much sexier looking too imo :)

I think I'm done splurging for a good while now.  I don't really *need* anything else (especially nothing relating to my workstation), but I'm sure the consumer inside me will find something else to blow some cheddar on.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

0 hands


I can't help it - I love spending money. Not that I need to be spoiled more than I already am, but I love treating myself to a new toy after a good month. This time 'round my bankroll is sitting higher than it has ever been, and as I don't plan on moving to 400nl any time soon, I figured I'd blow a little bit of dough.

I mentioned the TV-monitor tradeoff I might do with my mummy. I give her my 32" Acer, she buys me a new 24" Samsung. I actually pay a small amount of rent, or room and board rather, but I whipped up a deal with her saying that I could be let off the price of the monitor for the next few weeks' rent, and we call the deal even. So tonight, if she's down to drive me downtown to futureshop, I'll be picking up a nice second hi-res 24" samsung and my mum will have a flat panel to watch in her room :)

Thinking about the future...

With this whole thing with my aunt and my recent move to 200nl, I've been thinking a lot more about exactly what I'll be doing in the coming months (and years). Before my oma moved in, I was planning on moving out or even going traveling. That's kind of out of the window for now because I have to be around to take care of her.

So I'm thinking going back to college (ie community college). I was going to say that there wasn't much point since I've already finished all the electrical courses, but that's pretty narrow-minded thinking. I could definitely expand my education and look into construction, business management, maybe pick up another language, who knows. I'll definitely blow the dust off the course list book and take a look at what else they offer.

Speaking of things I haven't done in ages, I need exercise! I used to play different levels of hockey at least every winter (several years in summer hockey), but ever since I surpassed the max. age limit I have basically done zilch to keep myself active. I walk my dog daily, work out every month or so at home, and recently was getting really heavily into speed bagging before my stand broke. Since there are issues with the speed bag stand (can't keep it outside during the winter, can't bring it inside, don't have space to put in a wall-mounted version), I think I'll have to scrap that idea. I thought maybe I'd join a boxing gym. That's something I've been wanting to do for ages.

So I've got a brand new list of shit-to-do on my bedroom wall, including getting my driver's license, updating my passport, getting a credit card, skydiving, and all of the stuff from above. Looks like I've got stuff to do aside from poker after all.

None of that today, btw. I might play later on once (if) I get my second monitor hooked up, but I was too busy walking my dog, giving him a flee-killing shampoo and cleaning the house to get any tables fired up.

Monday, September 1, 2008

836 hands


First, these:

Against a nit...

Against a massive fish...

Against another fish...

Just blagh.

But then, the poker gods smiled down upon me.

And the final tally:

A new record day, just two days after my previous record :) I ran like a god, can't really chalk this one up to good play.

That is all for today, not much else to add. I tried to make a video out of it for Stosh but my commentary was all over the place.