June 19, 2010

WSOP! Trip 1, day 2

Tuesday was the day of my first tournament, the 2500PLO. Having won about that much playing cash games the day before, I was effectively freerolling, which is an excellent way to play tournaments with sizeable buyins. My starting table was full of unknowns, though most were younger and American, so perhaps it wasn't the best draw. I went ahead and cashed in my rebuy chips immediately, since the players on my right had done so, and I hoped to build a big stack ASAP if possible.

I won a few small pots in the first level, but didn't get involved in anything big. The first big pot came in level 2, with blinds of 25/50. I overlimped KQQ9cc UTG+1, and called a raise to 200. The flop was AJTr, and I checkraised the preflop raiser and one caller to 1800. Both of them called. The turn was 7:diamond:, putting a backdoor flush draw up, but otherwise a safe card, so I shipped my remaining 6200. Both called, and I was up against KQxx with diamonds and ATT2 with diamonds. Not in great shape, but the river bricked off and I won half of the large main pot and a good sidepot.

Next, I opened T986ds UTG, got 3bet small, and called. The flop was Q9x and checked through. On the 7 turn I check-called 600. The Q river completed a flush and I donked out 1200 as a bluff. He raised and I folded without enough ammo to 3bet bluff or a good representation of a boat.

I opened AQ42ds, got squeezed by the button, and actually just folded because I didn't really like my floppability out of position. It turned out to be a fortunate decision, as I would have flopped NFD+pair+gutter and lost to a turned boat. At the first break I had t10675.

During level 3 (50/75) I opened AKT8dd and called a 3bet. On the Q97r flop I donked out 1200 and folded to a raise. I kinda like my donkbet though, I think it gets him to expose his range, sometimes winning me the pot outright and sometimes getting me a turn card with initiative.

The next big pot I played, I repotted AKKJ against an aggressive shorter stack. He called and we got the rest in on an 852r flop, and his 5432 held up for the double.

Going into level 4 (50/100) I had t5650. Phil Galfond had moved to our table, which wasn't a welcome sight, but at least he was on my direct right. I limped AdQQTd UTG, and after a few more limpers Phil raised from the BB to 400. I called along with one other player. The flop came out AT3r and I called a bet of 650 from Phil. The turn was a Q, quite an interesting card, and we both checked. I don't think theres really much of a reason for me to bet there in what is probably the closest you can come to a WA/WB situation in PLO. The river bricked off, and he bet 1600. I thought about it a bit before calling, figuring that he can have AQ there as often as AA, and he'd probably bet turn with KJ most of the time. This time he had AA, so I was down to t2500 or so.

The next hand, I squeezed KK72cc from the blinds and got one call. The flop was AQ4ccc, giving me the nuts, and I stuck the rest in. Perhaps checking is better, but I don't imagine he will spew too much either way. Anyhow, he called quickly and rolled TT7x with ten high clubs. I was in good shape (>97% to win) but he binked a T on the turn and paired the 4 on the river, and I was out. Sigh.

I didn't feel too bad about it though, in a way getting a sick beat like that was less tilting than busting to a stupid coinflip or something. And at least it was a fairly early bustout, so I got to head to the cash games for a while afterwards. I did well again, winning 5k or so, and any discontent I had about busting a tournament was quickly washed away by cash profits.

On a semi-recommendation from someone, Vincent and I went to the Rio's Italian restaurant for a late dinner. Now, its well-known that the Rio is an awful place to try and find decent food, so I was hopeful that there might actually be a decent restaurant hiding in there somewhere. Sadly, it was disappointing, and the ongoing search for decent food at the Rio continues.

Posted By DJ Sensei at 11:08 PM


Tags: plo wsop rio Phil Galfond

June 15, 2010

WSOP! Trip 1, Day 1

I arrived in Vegas around noon, semi-planning to play the 2500 6MNL event today, but decided I'd be better off just relaxing, playing some cash games, and preparing to crush the 2500 PLO event tomorrow. So, I did just that. After a large lunch with Tom (tecmo) and his special lady at the Rio's world buffet, I headed to the Rio's poker room to play some cash games. My first 4 hands were at a shorthanded 5-5-20 PLO game (weird!) but I took a seat at the more conventional 5-10-25 PLO game when it opened up. The game wasn't great, but I grinded out a win by playing solid and running decently well. The only really big pots I remember were: My 6642ds against A753ds on a Q53ssx flop (I was actually in fairly bad shape, since my opponent had my 6 high FD crushed with her 7 high FD and she had 2 blockers to my wrap). Fortunately for me, we chopped that one when we ran it twice. After that, we got it in again, my ATT2 to her QQ52 on a T43 twotone flop. She had FD to go with her OESD+overpair, but I managed to bink a 4 on the turn both runs and scoop a ~$4500 pot. I don't really remember too many other hands all that well, aside from one time I flatted AAxx and flopped AQQ in a 4-way pot, but only got one c/c from the preflop raiser. It was a shame nobody had AQ, I probably would have won a monster pot. Anyhow, I booked a win of about $2500 on the session, which conveniently pays for my entry to tomorrow's donkament. Hopefully I manage to run good and get a fat stack, PLO tournaments are much more fun that way!

After the session, we had dinner reservations at CUT, a steakhouse that I hadn't eaten at before but which was quite favorably reviewed by everyone I asked. The opportunity to have a nice dinner was another reason that I chose to skip the tournament today, and I think it was a good one. Joining me for dinner were Chris (DeathDonkey), Jonas (RBK), Vincent (soepgroente), Emil (whitelime), and Ariel (FWF). Tom and his lady stopped by again, but they didn't stay for the full meal. The food was excellent as expected, but I didn't feel very well throughout most of it. I think it was just my body getting used to the horrible vegas atmosphere again. Hopefully its nothing worse than that, I hate being sick in Vegas. I also had to deal with a sweat in creditcard roulette, since my card was one of the last two heads-up for the $1200 bill, but fortunately I picked my own card to be safe and Jonas got stuck with it. It would have been super lame to be feeling bad during the meal and then get owned with the bill, too.

So tomorrow I take on my first tournament of this series, the 2500 PLO. I think I'm due to break my non-cash streak (currently 11 or 12 WSOP tourneys, I think? More if you include the other live tourneys I've played. Certainly within range of normal variance, but blech.) If I busto, theres a slight chance I'll play the 1500NL on Wednesday but probably not. I've got better ways to spend my day than that. Thursday I'll play either the 5000 6MNL or the 2500 PLH/PLO, and then I'll be heading back home on either Friday or Saturday. I can only take so much Vegas before I go crazy, so I'm planning to make a few shorter trips to try and keep that from being a problem.

Posted By DJ Sensei at 08:46 AM


Tags: plo wsop CUT

May 28, 2010

A brief lesson in PLO outs

A: 1 out is enough outs.

Full Tilt Poker $5/$10 $400 Cap Pot Limit Omaha Hi - 4 players - View hand 720875
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

CO: $568.00
BTN: $1284.50
Hero (SB): $1039.00
BB: $902.00

Pre Flop: ($15.00) Hero is SB with 8 of spades 9 of diamonds 7 of spades 9 of spades
1 fold, BTN raises to $20, Hero calls $15, BB calls $10

Flop: ($60.00) 6 of hearts 9 of hearts J of spades (3 players)
Hero checks, BB checks, BTN checks

Turn: ($60.00) 6 of clubs (3 players)
Hero bets $45, BB raises to $195, BTN folds, Hero raises to $380, BB calls $185

River: ($820.00) 6 of diamonds (2 players)

Final Pot: $820.00
Hero shows 8 of spades 9 of diamonds 7 of spades 9 of spades (a full house, Nines full of Sixes)
BB shows A of spades T of hearts 6 of spades K of hearts (four of a kind, Sixes)
BB wins $818.00
(Rake: $2.00)

B: 0 outs is not enough outs.

Full Tilt Poker $5/$10 $400 Cap Pot Limit Omaha Hi - 4 players - View hand 720876
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

BB: $568.00
CO: $1264.50
Hero (BTN): $639.00
SB: $1320.00

Pre Flop: ($15.00) Hero is BTN with 9 of hearts 8 of diamonds T of hearts J of spades
CO raises to $20, Hero raises to $75, SB calls $70, 1 fold, CO calls $55

Flop: ($235.00) 8 of spades 6 of diamonds 7 of hearts (3 players)
SB checks, CO checks, Hero bets $120, SB calls $120, CO folds

Turn: ($475.00) 3 of spades (2 players)
SB bets $205, Hero calls $205

River: ($885.00) 2 of hearts (2 players)

Final Pot: $885.00
Hero shows 9 of hearts 8 of diamonds T of hearts J of spades (a straight, Ten high)
SB shows 7 of diamonds Q of hearts K of clubs K of hearts (a pair of Kings)
Hero wins $883.00
(Rake: $2.00)

Full Tilt Poker $5/$10 Pot Limit Omaha Hi - 6 players - View hand 720877
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

CO: $3806.00
BTN: $822.00
SB: $654.75
Hero (BB): $1007.00
UTG: $1069.75
MP: $1017.00

Pre Flop: ($15.00) Hero is BB with J of hearts T of spades 7 of spades 7 of hearts
4 folds, SB calls $5, Hero raises to $30, SB calls $20

Flop: ($60.00) 5 of diamonds 5 of spades 7 of diamonds (2 players)
SB checks, Hero bets $50, SB calls $50

Turn: ($160.00) 8 of diamonds (2 players)
SB checks, Hero bets $140, SB raises to $360, Hero raises to $927 all in, SB calls $214.75 all in

River: ($1309.50) Q of hearts (2 players - 2 are all in)

Final Pot: $1309.50
SB shows 4 of clubs K of diamonds 3 of diamonds Q of clubs (a flush, King high)
Hero shows J of hearts T of spades 7 of spades 7 of hearts (a full house, Sevens full of Fives)
Hero wins $1306.50
(Rake: $3.00)

note: Same villain in all hands. Hand #2 was the hand immediately after hand #1, and #3 was on another table shortly thereafter. I like this guy!

Posted By DJ Sensei at 10:41 AM


Tags: plo one outer

May 11, 2010

Dumbest thing I've done in a while

This evening I was browsing around the stars lobby and discovered that tomorrow there are some tripledraw tournaments (SCOOP #24). Intrigued, I also discovered that there were hyperturbo SNG satellites to the biggest one. So, I registered for one in case it got off the ground. Then I got distracted and wandered off, naturally forgetting to unregister because I hardly ever play SNGs, especially those that require waiting around to start.

A few hours later I return to the computer and think “oh shit”! And yes, of course the tourney happened without me. I unsurprisingly finished 4th of 6 and effectively punted a few hundo. Sigh.

Hopefully I’ll crush the tournaments tomorrow and make it worth my trouble, but for now I am on lifetilt!

Posted By DJ Sensei at 06:30 AM


Tags: stupid punt lifetilt

May 01, 2010

April report

My apologies for not posting anything in April, but I can explain! I spent the better part of the month moving into a new apartment. My special lady finally moved to San Francisco, and we got an awesome two-bedroom place overlooking the park. We’re using the second bedroom as an office (my first office ever!). The apartment is huge for its type and overall is just a pretty fantastic place. Also, she brought her cat Zeus so now Jenny has a playmate. Two cats are way more fun than just one! The domesticated life is a little weird, but I’m slowly getting used to it. I think once we’re finally all-the-way unpacked and settled in it’ll be quite nice.

With all of that, I didn’t have much time for playing cards. In very limited action (maybe a thousand hands of PLO/tripledraw and 2k hands of .5/1 rush PLO) I won about $3k. I can’t complain. I plan to get back to serious grinding in May though, and will probably set a few monthly goals soon.

Posted By DJ Sensei at 08:33 PM


Tags: moving April

April 01, 2010

EPIC end to the month!

So I got a rather early start to the grind tonight, hoping I’d book a nice little win to cap a nice little month. Things started out well and I was up 2k pretty quickly. Next thing I knew, I couldn’t win a hand and I entered a long losing stretch. I saw some good games at higher stakes so I jumped in hoping to speed up the unstuck-ing process. As often happens, that plan wasn’t exactly what the deck had in mind. Pretty soon I was stuck 10k and pissed off at the big dent I had just made in my month’s results. But the games were still good, and my game was still solid, so I stuck with it and it finally turned around. I gradually built up a stack at a 25/50 shallow table and was alllmost unstuck when I picked up “the unicorn” and this epic hand went down:

Full Tilt Poker $25/$50 Pot Limit Omaha Hi – 6 players
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

Hero (MP): $5464.00
CO: $2024.00
BTN: $1547.00
SB: $6574.00
BB: $4532.00
UTG: $1574.00

Pre Flop: ($75.00) Hero is MP with K Club K Diamond A Club A Diamond
UTG calls $50, Hero raises to $200, 2 folds, SB calls $175, BB calls $150, UTG calls $150

Flop: ($800.00) Q Club 7 Heart 2 Club (4 players)
SB checks, BB checks, UTG bets $777, Hero raises to $3131, SB raises to $6374 all in, BB folds, UTG calls $597 all in, Hero calls $2133 all in

Turn: ($12702.00) K Heart (3 players – 3 are all in)

River: ($12702.00) 6 Diamond (3 players – 3 are all in)

Final Pot: $12702.00
Hero shows K Club K Diamond A Club A Diamond (three of a kind, Kings)
SB shows 3 Diamond Q Diamond J Club Q Heart (three of a kind, Queens)
UTG shows 3 Spade 7 Spade 7 Diamond 8 Spade (three of a kind, Sevens)
Hero wins $7780.00
Hero wins $4919.00
(Rake: $3.00)

Boom, shake the room. Another successful “get unstuck no matter how long it takes” in the books!

Posted By DJ Sensei at 06:24 AM


Tags: plo unstuck the unicorn

March 24, 2010


March continues to be a successful month of poker, though I’ve run into a patch of greater variance lately. Because my confidence levels are high and the games have been good, I’ve been playing a little higher. Naturally, higher stakes = bigger swings, so that has been happening. Fortunately I’ve maintained my composure, played well, and powered through it. Here’s a graph of the last few days:

I’m actually within striking distance of my 30k hand goal for the month, so thats encouraging too! (about 23k hands so far, though if you take out the rush poker its about 20k) Who would have thought that I might actually achieve a volume goal ever :p.

Some non-poker notes of awesomeness:

1) March Madness has been amazing so far! Not only is Duke crushing all opposition, the rest of the games have been exciting and fun to watch. You couldn’t really ask for a better tournament imo. Well, maybe if the rest of the ACC teams had achieved better. Funny story: some friends and I went to a bar to watch Duke’s first round game. As we were leaving, a Maryland-clad fan heckled us from a distance. I hollered back that I wished him luck, and that we should all be rooting for the ACC now, and he looked utterly torn-up inside. Apparently the idea that a Duke fan would ever root for Maryland was too much for him to handle. Note: I usually root for every ACC team except UNC in all non-conference games, especially tournament games.
2) The wedding in Durham last weekend was a ton of fun; I got to see lots of friends from college and dress up in my fancy suit and even go watch Duke win the ACC championship live and in person!
3) This coming weekend is another college friend’s wedding, this time in Houston. Conveniently, Houston is also the location of the South regional which Duke is playing in, so I’ll be going to the games on Friday and Sunday*! If Duke makes it to the final four, I plan to go watch that too. What kind of fan would I be if I didn’t?
4) Spring is here! Wooo!

  • - no jinx please!

Posted By DJ Sensei at 10:43 AM


Tags: swings grinding Duke

March 16, 2010

[Book Review] Cowboys Full: The Story of Poker

Cowboys Full: The Story of Poker by James McManus

Most online grinders rarely consider the history of poker and its roots on the American frontier. A story perhaps more familiar to amateur players, moviegoers and historians, it is one of intrigue and legend. Cowboys Full does an excellent job of describing the stages of poker’s historical development, from European card games to the palatial riverboats of the Mississippi, from the wild west to the civil war, from the early days in Las Vegas to the modern era of massive WSOP fields. Reinforcing general trends with famous and interesting anecdotes, he weaves the tale of poker in an engrossing manner.

The history of poker was not a subject that I had ever spent much effort investigating; most of my attention thus far has been devoted to optimal strategies and tactics. While you won’t find any modern strategic advice in this book, you may certainly benefit from reading it. I found it to be a refreshing and enjoyable read which gave perspective to my current career and the state of poker on the whole. It also reinforced my anger towards those who forced the UIGEA into law, not only because of the underhanded way that they did so but because I now recognize even more that poker is a very important part of America’s cultural history.

Posted By DJ Sensei at 11:22 PM


Tags: poker history Cowboys Full James McManus

March 12, 2010

Maximum Wage

I’ve been focused on the grind all month so far and it has started to pay off a little more consistently. In fact, I’ve only had one losing day (and I won it back with extra profit the next day). The game is midstakes PLO, mostly, but I’ve had a few successful triple-draw sessions too. I’ve managed to put in a little more than 12k hands, which is about on par for my goal of 30k in the month. Though 2k of them were from rush poker, so they don’t quite count, even though I won a little bit :). Hopefully I don’t jinx myself, but I think my results are consistently attainable (i.e. close to my likely true winrate) so I plan on keeping it up.

Interesting side note: at Rush $50 PLO, the rake burden is close to 17bb/100, which seems ridiculously high! Compare to: 5.7bb/100 at 2/4 PLO or 3.2bb/100 at 5/10 PLO. Let me know if you guys find similar results. If that’s the case, FullTilt is making a killing in rush games!

This weekend I’m heading back to Durham for a college friend’s wedding in the Duke Chapel (baller!) and I’ve also arranged to go to the ACC Championship game, which will hopefully be awesome! Quite a nice little weekend holiday. Sadly, I won’t get any chances to make fun of UNC, because they are already out of the tournament. So it goes.

Note: the title of the post came from the awesome song by Jelly Donut (a rapping pastry from San Francisco). Behold.

Posted By DJ Sensei at 09:35 AM


Tags: grinding rush plo March GTHC

March 02, 2010


Poker Stars $2/$4 Pot Limit Omaha Hi – 2 players
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

Hero (BTN/SB): $554.70
BB: $170.05

Pre Flop: ($6.00) Hero is BTN/SB with 3 Spade 6 Diamond 6 Club 7 Club
Hero raises to $12, BB calls $8

Flop: ($24.00) 6 Heart 9 Heart 9 Club (2 players)
BB checks, Hero bets $16, BB calls $16

Turn: ($56.00) 8 Heart (2 players)
BB checks, Hero bets $40, BB calls $40

River: ($136.00) T Heart (2 players)
BB checks, Hero bets $106, BB calls $102.05 all in

Final Pot: $340.10
Hero shows 3 Spade 6 Diamond 6 Club 7 Club (a full house, Sixes full of Nines)
BB shows 5 Heart 5 Diamond J Heart Q Heart (a straight flush, Eight to Queen)
BB wins $339.10
(Rake: $1.00)

Then, the very next hand:

Poker Stars $2/$4 Pot Limit Omaha Hi – 2 players
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

Hero (BB): $400.00
BTN/SB: $339.10

Pre Flop: ($6.00) Hero is BB with J Diamond 9 Spade 8 Club T Club
BTN/SB raises to $8, Hero raises to $24, BTN/SB calls $16

Flop: ($48.00) 6 Diamond 3 Diamond T Heart (2 players)
Hero bets $28, BTN/SB calls $28

Turn: ($104.00) J Spade (2 players)
Hero bets $78, BTN/SB raises to $287.10 all in, Hero calls $209.10

River: ($678.20) 7 Club (2 players – 1 is all in)

Final Pot: $678.20
Hero shows J Diamond 9 Spade 8 Club T Club (a straight, Seven to Jack)
BTN/SB shows 3 Heart J Club J Heart 6 Club (three of a kind, Jacks)
Hero wins $677.20
(Rake: $1.00)

Posted By DJ Sensei at 09:06 AM


Tags: justice

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DJ Sensei