One day pause and back to the usual crap
Tuesday June 13th 2006, 4:44 am
Filed under: Full Tilt Poker,No-Limit Hold'em,S&G

I didn’t have any urge to play poker yesterday, as I spent my day on the couch watching the footie world cup and then NBA Finals at night. Goooo Dirk.

Basically much of the same today, minus the NBA Finals, after all they don’t resume play until tomorrow night. So I fired up FullTilt for some relaxing SnG action, although the relaxing part almost turned into the tilty part pretty quickly. Kings cracked by sixes, hmm…thanks, which basically let me tilt of the next SnG. Then in the third one I thought it was all over again, after I pushed my AKs into AA. Always lovely to see two category A hands in a 3 handed game. I thought my way back though. I’m in the BB and Mr. Pushmonkey on the button, he min-raises which more often than not spells Aces or rag Ace, depending on the situation. The SB folds and I read it to be a rag ace and called. Let’s say I was giving it a shot, as calling the min-raise put around 25% of my stack into the middle. Flop comes 4-4-A. Perfect, I check…he bets double the pot. I push…he calls…he shows A5…turn and river are blank…and all the chips come my way. What did I hold? Snowman’s sailboat…yup, that’s 84o…lol…from that point on I just kept bullying the weak tight player until he busted and when I was headsup with Mr. Aggression-Monkey it was over pretty soon, couldn’t catch anything and he ran away with it. I still feel good about my play, although I’m officially folding Kings preflop next time…or maybe not… 😉

Hammer time…
Saturday June 10th 2006, 2:28 pm
Filed under: Full Tilt Poker,No-Limit Hold'em,S&G

After I had written the last post early this morning, I felt the pressure and anger go away. So I decided to play two more SnGs. Sure enough I didn’t change anything about my approach – play a small range of hands, always considering position and when in a hand and hitting, bet the living jebus out of them. Sure enough it worked this time and I finished ITM twice in a row (2nd, 3rd). The turning point was the following hand which put me into the chiplead and lead to a 2nd place finish.

I’m in the SB, UTG folds, button calls, I call, BB checks. Pot is 1200. Flop comes down 8-7-3 rainbow. I push my remaining chips in the middle. BB ponders and calls. Button goes over the top to push the BB all-in, he calls. Showdown: button K8o, BB J7s, Me 73s – s00ted canadian hammer baby! Turn is a 6. River is a 7, giving me the lovely s00ted-almost-the-hammer-boat and w00t 5.3k in chips. Ooooh the sweet taste of winning a pot with the hammer, even if it’s s00ted and only almost the real hammer 😉

On another note: they both didn’t know what hit’em, but hey, I was in the SB, had two live cards, so why not give it a discounted look 😉

S00ted canadian hammer boat

Germany w00t, my play/luck argh
Saturday June 10th 2006, 4:28 am
Filed under: Full Tilt Poker,No-Limit Hold'em,S&G

So the Fifa World Cup started today with the opening match Germany vs Costa Rica. We won 4-2, w00t. Not a really good game and the two goals scored by Costa Rica really showed that the defensive part is the weakest link of our current team – although one of Costa Rica’s goal was an offside goal. Given that it was the opening match, with expectation high and feel for the game low, it was a good effort and the first 3 points. Nice one. Even better that I picked both Germany and Ecuador to win their opening matches (Ecuador 2-0 Poland), so I’m off to a good start in all of the pots I’m playing.

After a nice bbq along with some beer and some more footie (Ecuador vs Poland) it was time to play some poker. I was in such a good mood, but that quickly changed as soon as I received my first junk kickings. Now I’m not a whinebox per se [although this very blog has been, is and will be my way of dealing with things, so bad beat stories, whether you like to hear/read them or not, are an integral part of this blog – although I’m trying to get keep the “whine whine”-post to a minimum and get to the point of analyzing the play along with the situation and questions, opinions and advice are very welcome], but sometimes you can’t help but shout/write it all out after you’ve received yet another kicking. Sometimes it’s just bad luck, most of the times it’s bad play shown by your opponents (sure enough rewarded by the deck) and sometimes it’s just bad play. I think that most of my beats today were a mix of all of the above.

1. Let’s start with bubble one (this hand didn’t happen on the bubble, but it put me from chipleader to bottom and ultimately led to my bubbling), aka kick my junk:

I’m sitting on the button with Phil Hellmuth’s favourite hand (two black nines), there are two limpers in front of me and I decide to get at least the blinds and/or one of the limpers to fold, winning the hand right there. I put a bet of 400 into the pot (blinds are 30/60). Sure enough the SB calls and all others fold. So I’m now heads-up. Nice. Even nicer when the flop comes down 3c9h8h. Now the SB is putting in a bet of 180. I read that as a feeler bet and ask myself: What hands can I put him/her on at this point? As I don’t have any prior notes on the player in question, I can’t be sure, so I apply my rule of thumb: Either a high pocket pair (JJ, QQ, KK, AA), a strong Ace maybe suited, or just twenty (maybe suited). So (s)he could be drawing to a straight or a flush, or (s)he could think that (s)he’s ahead with the overpair. I decide to go with my gut (overpair – after all (s)he called a 400 bet prior to the flop with only 30 commited) and push right there. (S)he goes into the tank for a while and reluctantly calls – showing JhJs.

Now I feel really good about the situation. I was behind preflop, but with the nice flop I’m now an almost 85% favourite to win the hand. The turn is the 10c – although this is not a card I wanted to see, it’s still not too bad, the odds are still on my side with slightly over 77% to win the pot. Now I get the sick feeling in my stomach that is only present when the dealer is about to peel the one card of the deck that can hurt me (in this case it could be two cards Q/7 which might all be live, so basically 8 outs). Sure enough the dealer is kind enough to peel the Qc off the deck for yet another fascinating runner runner straight.

Good for me that I’m pretty used to such crap by now, so I abstain from throwing up on my keyboard and moan a little. Then I think of the old math thing: if you’re a favourite to win it around 77%, you’re going to lose it around 23% of the time. But god, do does 23% (or anything between 1-30%) seem to hit a lot against me or what? Now I know that it’s obvious that you’re going to get outdrawn more if you move in (way) ahead and the human mind remembers (bad) beats more than when hands hold up (or when you outdraw yourself for that matter), but I don’t think that’s the case here – and to prove my “I’m losing against all odds more often than I’m supposed to”-theory, I’m starting a bad beat and (bad) win log from this day forward! Let’s see if I can prove my theory – and even if it’s for a (shorter) period of time [after all such things are supposed to smooth out over an extended period of time].

My analysis of the hand:

After I flopped top set, there’s not much I could have done different. After all I need to make sure that I make drawing as expensive as possible as I’m sure that I’m ahead right there, so I can’t see an obvious error on my behalf in the hand…can you?

For your viewing pleasure, the hand in it’s beauty, yuck:

Come on!
2.+3. Are you kidding me? – or otherwise put: there’s exactly one hand (or very few) that can beat me, sure enough one opponent will hold ’em!
2. Let’s start with the hand as it evolved: I hold 9h 6d in the BB, blinds are at 80/160. It’s folded around to the SB who calls and I check. The flop comes down 8d Th Qd. The SB puts in a min-bet. Now I don’t know where the hell I’m standing, but I call. Turn is the 3c. He checks, I check. Now I’m pretty sure that he doesn’t hold top pair, but for all I know I’m behind. River brings the Jh. I made my straight and with now flush possible I feel that I hold the winning hand – after all the only hands that can beat me are K9, AK. SB puts in another min-bet, which I read as at least a semi-steal, so I min-raise him. He pushes. Now I’m wondering – can he really hold K9/AK? Unraised pot. Bet the flop. Checked the turn. Bet the river. I’m not sure, but I don’t put him on this right there, so I call. Sure enough he not only shows AK, but AKs.

Analysis: Well, this is the old problem of giving it a shot. If I lay down this hand after he bet the flop, I don’t have to worry. I’m out of 160 (BB) and that’s that. So this is the first and final error in this hand (IMO) – after the check on the turn all I can put him on (that would beat me) is a flush draw or one pair/two pair, after the river card I can’t put him on K9/AK(s)…or can I? Maybe I should have believed him right there, but I didn’t. My bad.

3. Nines again, this time 9s 9h UTG, four handed. I’m slightly behind the chipleader and way ahead of two smaller stacks (3 ITM). Bubble time. I pop it up to the pot size (blinds 80/160). The two small stacks fold, the BB (chipleader) calls. Flop comes down Td 8h 7h. The BB puts in a min bet. Turn is the Js. Now I made my straight and wait for the BB to act. The BB puts in another min-bet (160), I reraise to 2k. BB goes into the tank and calls. River Ks. Now the BB pushes his remaining chips in. What to do? For all I know, the only hand that can beat me is AQ. Now this would be in the range of hands to call my preflop bet, but not really in the range of calling the turn bet, or am I missing something? Was he really drawing to a gutshot with Ace high (or a kicker playing rag Ace for that matter)? Impossible is nothing, but I’m not laying this down. I call. He shows AsQc and I bubble.

Quick rewind: Preflop – BB 44% Me 55%, Flop – BB 20% Me 79%, Turn – BB 14% Me 86%, River – BB 100% Me 0%

Sigh, ahead all the way, outsuckered again. So I would sum those three hands up as good played hands – Me 2, Donkeys 1, hands won – Me 0, Donkeys 3.
Opinions, comforting words, advice and even “stfu you made an error here, here and here” comments very welcome. I’m out…

Mixed results with monster hands
Friday June 09th 2006, 2:51 am
Filed under: Full Tilt Poker,No-Limit Hold'em,S&G

I haven’t seen that many AA, KK and QQ that I saw today in the last few weeks combined. Still I wasn’t able to win a SnG today. Played six, finished ITM only twice (2nd, 3rd). Especially painful was my chiplead 3:1 heads-up: I got AA, KK, QQ and AKs – got my Aces cracked and no customer on the other hands. So I ultimately lost…argh!

Nontheless a nice session overall, although I’m slightly down. I’m off now to watch Dirk kick Shaq’s ass 😉

Goooooooo Mavs 🙂

Hammer and Kill’em all
Thursday June 08th 2006, 4:23 am
Filed under: Full Tilt Poker,No-Limit Hold'em,PokerStars,S&G,Shorthanded

Poker can be excruciating pain, but on the other hand it can be so funny that you need all your concetration not to wet yourself. Tonight’s session was a mix of both. Always ugly to bubble two times in a row, but hey, that’s poker too – if someone’s winning, someone gotta lose. At least I had some good things coming my way to end the session:

  1. Getting mighty shortstacked on the bubble – sucks
  2. Getting the hammer and dropping it taking down a pot – priceless 😉
  3. Still bubbling – sucks…


After that hammer experience with the inevitable bubble I played one of my favourite SnGs – 5$, 1 Table, Shorthanded, Top 2 ITM. What can I say? I totally owned the table and knocked out every single player. Yup, every single one of them. The first to eliminations were a little weird. I hold QQ…flop comes all rags with a long shot straight draw (only if someone played low cards and was extremely lucky)…good for me that one played his Ace rag which hit top-pair like gold, the other one was really on a gutshot – I don’t know what he’s thinking as this was at the 10/20 blind level 5 minutes into the SnG? Even better that noone connected on the blank turn and river and I tripled up. The next one was even better…I hold AJ and raise it up in LP. Two callers. Flop AA4…one of the callers pushes, the other folds. Now I know that I’m only behind if he really has AK or AQ…so I call…he shows A2..he doesn’t improve and bang, we’re down to three. One of the remaining three was ultra-tight, no position raises, always calling, always folding to a bet. He was out after some rounds and we’re ITM. I’m up around 2.5 to 1 in chips and although he wins a nice pot I push right back and it’s basically a done deal as I flop the nut flush. He bets into me and I get maximum value. I’m now up almost 4 to 1 and it’s all over a few hands later. This is really the first time I knocked out every single one of my opponents. The sweet taste of the bright side of variance I guess – groovy stuff.

Kill all!

Sidenote: Second time I played this format, the second win. I know that that’s not a representative sample yet, but I might found my new game of choice…we’ll see… 🙂

WWdN – Katitude Invitational
Wednesday June 07th 2006, 4:28 am
Filed under: MTT,No-Limit Hold'em,PokerStars,Tournaments

Well…played for nearly 2h…was card dead most of the time, but when I was in with a hand, I mostly won. Didn’t receive any help on my last hand though AJo vs JJ and finished in 21st (of 69).

Side notes:

  1. I’ve seen Wil drop the hammer 3 times with the first hour
  2. I’ve seen xkm1245 play the hammer almost to perfection – he boated up on the turn 🙂
  3. I’ve seen Luckbox sucking out a chop (vs Waffles)…
  4. I’ve seen Luckbox winning a monster pot and he was ahead the whole time…
  5. What more can you ask from a tourney? 😉

During current Hold’em session you were dealt 165 hands and saw flop:
– 10 out of 21 times while in big blind (47%)
– 4 out of 21 times while in small blind (19%)
– 4 out of 123 times in other positions (3%)
– a total of 18 out of 165 (10%)
Pots won at showdown – 5 of 7 (71%)
Pots won without showdown – 6

Looking at those stats, you could think that I was Mr. Tighty McTight…but what can you do if you hold stuff like 36o, 46o and K4o (7 times) all night? Especially hawesome if you’re looking down at monsters like 23o, 24o, 26o all the time when you’re in the blinds… 😉

Da Return of dqb!
Tuesday June 06th 2006, 3:58 am
Filed under: Full Tilt Poker,No-Limit Hold'em,S&G,Tournaments

No joy in the token satellite. I can’t remember the last time I played one, but it was once again good fun, seeing donkeys sticking with the ever so popular motto “push early, push often (no matter what you’re holding)”…so we were down to the final table quite quickly. Sad part was that I was really card dead and sure enough, once I get a playable hand (AJs) someone is holding bullets – unfortunately I’m not Phil Hellmuth Jr., so I couldn’t dodge ’em 😉

Played 4 other SnGs afterwards, 1 win and 1 third place along with one bubble and one early exit, so not to shabby.

Side note: It would have been fun one way or another after the following hand evolved

  1. You’re looking down at 66 in the BB
  2. MP decides to min-raise
  3. One caller in front of me, I call
  4. For the rest of the hand see pic below…I guess I don’t need to explain that I let him hang himself 😉


PokerStars junk kicking reloaded
Tuesday June 06th 2006, 1:20 am
Filed under: No-Limit Hold'em,PokerStars,S&G

Only managed to squeeze in a little poker yesterday (1 SnG – 3rd place finish) and today (3 SnGs – 1 bubble, 2 earlier exits). Sometimes you’re in the junk-kicking-zone (yesterday) and sometimes you’re in the getting-a-junk-kicking-zone (today). Played the first two table SnG and really played well. When we were down to 5 handed (4 ITM), I just couldn’t catch a break and had to take a shot, missed, no biggie. Then I watch some movies and relax a little, come back, fire up PokerStars and play two SnGs at the same time. Everything looking good until I catch three hands in a row:

  1. KK in LP…one early raiser, one caller behind him…then folded around to me…Push…orginal raiser calls…shows AJ….flop AJx and IGHN
  2. Parallel to the first hand I catch 77, medium sized stack on the button raises…folded around to me…I ponder and decide to give it a go…push…he calls…shows Q10o (?!)…flop J78…turn the case 9, river 5…
    Don't ever forget to wear your titanium cup
  3. In the very next hand I look down at As6s…I’m now short stacked and decide to push on the button as there was only one limper so far…he calls…shows KcKh..yuck…flop Ac Jd Jc 🙂 …turn Qc…oh oh….river 6c…and IGHN…
    Don't ever forget to wear your titanium cup

Enough Stars for today…let’s see if I can get some revenge on the other rooms…

Post imminent
Sunday June 04th 2006, 9:04 pm
Filed under: Opinionated,Poker Stuff

Well, after yesterday’s home game I was confused and my mind was running at 180mph. I had a pretty good discussion on the drive home about the question “How does ‘questionable’ play influence your own game?” and the things surrounding that question.

I’m still writing on this very interesting topic and so this is just a note that there will be a post about it as soon as I got all the things worked out. Could be today, could be tomorrow, could be a few days…you’ll find out soon enough… 😉

Live game experience
Sunday June 04th 2006, 3:26 am
Filed under: Live Play,No-Limit Hold'em,Tournaments

There’s nothing like playing poker in a live environment. It would rock more though if you would get the hands to go along with that feeling. The only playable hands that I got prior to the final table were rare (QQ…which I layed down after a possible/obvious flush board presented itself, an AQ which I layed down to yet another possible/obvious flush board and AA – just when I needed it). So I made the final table again, but I was unable to take control of the table as I was on the shortstack and so the possibilities to push one of the pot were rare given the huge blinds. So my end came in 6th place when my KdQd received no help vs 1010…too bad…at least I made the final table again….


  1. Being on the shortstack – sucks
  2. Sitting in the BB at the same time – sucks
  3. Having three limpers in front of yourself – sucks
  4. Looking down at AA and more than doubling up against the other shortstack to reach the final table – priceless 😉