Pokerstars WBCOOP Event #5, 8 game mix....

It was just one of those nights at the virtual felt last night. I may have had a little fun along the way, but the damn cards were as frustrating as Hell. I had some pretty big hopes going into the mixed games last night, hoping that my familiarity with the variety of games being played would give me a tiny bit of an edge.

But to call myself card dead last night, would not quite do justice to how awfully bad I was really running.

The game started out with a bizarre twist. I had a friend sitting at the table with me, in the form of SmBoatDrinks. There was only one other player actually sitting with us, as the trend of registered players not showing up continued in full on effect. SBD busted our third player fairly early on with what else, a boat! Noice. Then we went on a really, REALLY sick run of hands. I think we went three wins in a row for SBD and then, three in a row for me. Back and forth, back and forth we went. It truly was an epic battle. All the while as we fought on, we were eating up the blinds and antes from the players that were sitting out. I managed to grow the stack into just more than double in the first hour. With SBD getting the far better of the deal, leaving our table with nearly a 4x growth in chips.

I continued to get premium starters with the 3 of us still at the table. Then I'd get into it in one of the games and come out a loser if I stayed in and of course, a huge winner if I folded. Bricks continually hit my RAZZ and STUD starters and if I folded the crap like 9-Q off,

I'd see a flop like this and a pair of Kings take down the huge pot.

When our table busted up, I was moved to the perfect crap position of course. Naturally the 3 to my right were all sitting out, but the two to my left were actually at the table. They had free run of the blinds and antes, while I had to make it through them to get to a pot. PERFECT!

I made it to my third table with a stack that was anything but spectacular. After it folded around to my SB, I went for the steal with a raise. I was met with the chat of, "I thought we were buds." Then a re-raise. Now I'm drinking, not particularly enjoying the game as it has played out for me and my, "bud" is re-raising my bet. I do what comes natural to me when I'm feeling miserable, I jammed with my crap.

Now I know what that feels like from the other side of things! Sorry "bud."

As a partial idea of how bad things were running for me, here's a sample RAZZ starting hand.

And then of course, here's a sample STUD starting hand.

I could throw up dozens and dozens of caps like those to be honest, prompting me during the game to complain about all the "feet" I was getting in place of hands.

That is a part of the game though so I'm sure that you can imagine the stealing, bluffing and moves I had to make, just to maintain some sort of a stack. For the most part, my timing was bang on the mark.

I did do well all night in 2-7 triple draw though, as it seemed my assumption that others knowledge of the game would be pretty weak, was quite correct. I saw several Ace high wins that totally shocked the crap out of me. Even my "bud" took one of those down as a matter of fact.

Now 2-7 for those that don't play the game, is based on 2,3,4,5,7 being the mortal nuts at the end. Straights play, flushes play and Aces play as high cards. The hand also plays out in three draws and three betting rounds, where you can really catch some of the drawing players at their best. In other words, the worst hand you can possibly imagine is true gold. As an example,

I stood pat after drawing one card to start this hand out. I believe a lot of players will draw themselves to death, hoping to catch the absolute nut hand for the win. I could tell by a few of the hands played, that my opponent here had some idea of how the game actually worked. So I tried to control the pot, while holding what I thought was a solid enough hand to take it down. Although his last stand pat did scare the crap out of me.

As was typical for the rest of the night, I ran crap, was dealt crap and more often than not if I folded crap, I would've hit the crap out of the flops. So my end came when I had nearly enough chips to play another ten minutes or so, and was dealt a RAZZ starter with two others interested. Get'em in and pray for the triple up or, go back to the bar and enjoy the rest of my night.

The band at the bar was hawt and the Scotch went down every bit as good if not better, than it would have while staring at my monitor and hoping for the magic to return.

I should learn to never get my hopes up about big games, it never works out like I plan it to.

Ces't le vie.

Oh and my "Bud." Well I finally figured out who it was and have to say thanks. (NOT for the chips on the suck out either!) Thanks for making an unbearable and painful night of cards, so much more fun than it could've been.

As I'm probably the only one that knows it's you, I'll do my bit to keep it to myself. I think you were really enjoying the secrecy behind the whole thing so, enjoy away!

Event #6 is NLHE and by my calculations, runs in less than two hours. Hope to see you there!

My sincerest thanks for dropping by....


Pokerstars WBCOOP Event #4....

I'm pretty sure that this is the post where I'm supposed to say, "Yay me! Look what I did on Pokerstars kids!" But honestly, I feel pretty let down to tell the truth.

Losing while playing relatively, (for me) good NLHE is just that. It's losing. Don't get me wrong I'm thrilled to make it deep in these things, it's just that I really thought I played well enough to take this one down.

Next time!

So as in any large field MTT, it helps to get off to a good start. The player to my immediate right had been open shoving every single hand. I figured this one was good enough to fight back with.

Chalk up one for the good guys!

After watching these two players go at each pot with the six others sitting out, I thought I'd take a shot at a little $200 pot with nothing but Ace high.

To say I was pretty surprised as the chips slid my way, is a fairly large understatement!

It made a little more sense when I saw them both do this though.

Here's a funny little hand that I was totally ready to toss away but by some weird miracle, these chips slid my way as well.

Based on his betting pattern, I made a read that the player to my left was on a busted flush draw. I figured that a bet on the blanked river would get him out of the hand and me the small pot.

Bad read, great result!

Of course to get anywhere at all in an MTT of this donkatude, you have to have a little hand on hand violence AND....

catching a pretty good flop when someone jams their pocket rockets, doesn't hurt in the least when it happens.

This was a hand that I really hated. It felt so good going into the action but as the play developed, I took my lumps and let the ladies and the chips I'd bet go.

The stack took it's second big hit there but realistically, I made the right play in both pots and in the end, I should be happy about that.

Things went all normal for a bit after that hand.

With Bammer after Bammer becoming the way to go.

So on the fifth Bammer in a row,

I scooped up a tidy little stack of chippies!


A little later on in the game, my attention turned to a player that was playing exclusively any Ace in the hole. Every single hand he was in and had to, (or chose to) show, there was an Ace back in his holdings. He also played any flopped Ace in those situations pretty strongly. So I took a chance here that furfy1 didn't score two pair on me and you know what?

He didn't.

A couple of hands later I made a play to bust the same player. I took a real gamble slow playing a flopped set. But once my hand improved to the boat on the river, I think it became a pretty strongly disguised hand and it did help me get his entire stack in the center.

I'd appreciate any thoughts on how that hand was played. I find the decision process of when to slow play and when to jam in hands like that, one of the toughest concepts for me to grasp in NLHE. Yes it worked out OK, but was it the right way to go?

This last hand I'll show, also makes me wonder if I did the right thing. Flushed to the Queen as the river card came, his jam just didn't add up in my head.

I took a lot of time to hash that one out. I just couldn't wrap my head around him having the King of Spades the way the betting all went down. Good call I guess, but a tough one for me.

From that point on in the game I was either completely card dead, or I'd run into situations like this. I'd get a few chips in with a good starter,

only to see flops come out like that.

Of course to keep the Earth within it's proper gravitational attitude and all, my old friend stuck with me through and through!

Like a fine wine and a perfectly aged cheddar,

it's just plain nuts not to put us together!

In the end I just plain made an awful read. I got it in as a slight dog and apparently, I wasn't holding enough catching up from behind to win.

So there you have it, a summary of how this donkey managed to outlast 1,860 other donkey's that play the game.

Special thanks to Scott for the rail and as always, my man Double D for the perfectly timed "rail-a-shot" as well.

It's the 8-game mixer tonight kiddies! Should be one of my better chances at a bigger prize in this deal. I <3 newbies at 2-7 triple draw. That, the STUD and the PLO, should help me get through the LHE headaches that are bound to occur. Good luck to everyone that's playing and hopefully, we'll see you at the tables again.

My sincerest thanks for dropping by....


Well I'll be damned....

More later.

My sincerest thanks for dropping by....

Pokerstars WBCOOP Event #3....

Up here in the Great White North, it's no surprise that we live for Hockey. One of the key lessons we're all asked to learn early is if your head and heart aren't in the game, do not step out on that ice. Because for certain if you do, that's when you're going to get hurt!

I think an 1,800 plus player MTT of NLHE Online, should carry the same warning!

I took dozens of screen caps last night as the frustration built within me. But looking back now, I know my head wasn't really in the game. When that happens you're going to get hurt!

This is exactly how last night went for me.

Holding pocket 10's and second to act, I make a 4x raise to $80. The player to my immediate left makes the call as does the button. A flop of Q-8-9 rainbow sees the button lead out with a bet. I settle on the fact that I'm against a Queen of some kind and I let go of my hand. The call was made by one to my left. Naturally the Johnny comes on the turn that would have completed my gutter. There is small action and the second 9 on the river got them to the point we see here....

For the record the call was made and the Q - 2 takes down the pot, as the player to my left open mucks his J - 4.

The standard raise at our table whether the blinds were at $10/$20, $30/$60 or $40/$80, quickly became $300. Typical of much of the Euro MTT play I see every week. This should not have frustrated me as it did and actually, I should have seen it as a great opportunity to build up the chip stack. But no! I repeatedly folded hands to pressure, only to watch that hand become the mortal nuts with a huge pot built up in front of me. Then I'd watch the pot get pushed over to the eventual winner, holding A-2 for the Ace high win.

My head just wasn't in the game.

I can bitch about bad play and starting hands of others all I want but in the end, my job was to figure all that stuff out and take advantage where I could.

I just didn't do it so, no GG me.

Hopefully back at it tonight for Event #3, with the right attitude and my head and heart in the game. Hope to see you all there as well.

My sincerest thanks for dropping by....


Pokerstars WBCOOP Event #2, PLO....

Pokerstars ran Event #2 of the World Blogger Championship of Online Poker last night, a Pot Limit Omaha game. Since I do play a fair amount of Omaha and PLO rather than the O-8 rendition, I had my hopes set pretty high for this one.

I eased into the game by taking a pretty big gamble. After folding for the first dozen or so hands and observing the wild starting hand variety of a few of the players, I made a note or two on who were acting like the Hold'Em players and who it was, that seemed to be playing PLO. The player RuzGerman was definitely falling into the Hold'Em category of players. He had won and lost a few good pots, with nothing more than top pair. So after his pre-flop call and subsequent re-raise after this flop, I took a shot that the flush was not what he was after.

I don't particularly like that as a starting hand to be honest but given the play ahead of this hand, my gut said I was going to make out alright.

Thank goodness I did too! Just after that I get this :


Oh and then I see this one next!

For what seemed like an eternity, I couldn't get back into the game. Soooooooooooo frustrating. I see the Internet & DSL lights on the box flashing at me, taunting as a reminder that I should be playing Poker right now but can't. All I can do instead, is sit and wait.

As my connection issues finally resolve themselves and I get back in the game, I see my folded hole cards and the hand being played out as follows.

Although I would have preferred the hand double suited to be honest, that is one of my favorite starters in PLO. I think I could have increased my chip count on that one.

Playing four-handed later against the two players on my left that would start with just about any four cards, I drew another of my favorite starting hands and hit the nearly perfect flop.

After abuabu1 checked, I bet it out. His check-raise was met with a re-raise of my own and after a long pause to think about it, his fold slid me another healthy pot.

The player to my immediate left jcars, was constantly showing a penchant for betting out on flopped top pair. Holding the set, I built up the pot a bit post flop.

Improving to a boat on the river, wasn't going to slow me down any time soon. So I managed to get his entire stack into the middle and the rest as they say, is history.

Well into the event, the number of players sitting out made for a challenging table. Here we sit 3-handed with a monster stack to the left of me, for what seemed like forever!

It basically came down to who had the balls to make the run at the open blinds. A pretty tough way to play the game. So I picked my spots and quite honestly, a lot of them were where the two active players were actually in the blinds. I figured that anyone can chip away at an empty spot with chips in front of it. Why not show them that I'm not afraid of a spot with a live player at it? Solid play or not, I don't know. But for the most part, I held my own and managed to garner a few pots along the way.

At the $150/$300 level and a pot grown to over $2000 in chips, I found another favorite starter and decided to play pretty aggressive pre-flop. With the uber-aggressive nature of the two behind and to my left, I was actually quite surprised to see the pot pushed my way before a flop. Bonus!

Although two hands do not a player make I know, I'd seen poltsik on my right get it in twice in the last 8 or so hands, with Quad's in the hole. That to me is JUST the kind of player you want to have sitting there ahead of you.

Poltsik was also playing a lot of hands quite aggressively as well. So when I picked up a starter that I thought was pretty good against his pre-flop aggression, I played right back at him on this flop. I got all my stack in with the flopped set, only to watch his set of Kings in the hole improve to the flush.

I'm just not good enough I guess, to have seen that one coming.

So I'm busto!

Out in 206th. of the 1634 that entered.

GG me and GG poltsik, whoever you are.

I railed a couple of players through the rest of the event and would like to offer my congrats to both BadBlood for his 73rd. place finish and Lightning as well, for picking up a 3rd. place for his efforts. Great work both!

Event #3 goes tonight at 6:00pm ET and will return back to NLHE. I hope to see you all there for the fun!

My sincerest thanks for dropping by....


Pokerstars WBCOOP, Event #1 ....

The good :

I was sat at my first table with TanOrpheus, so that was a lot of fun. Also had a chat by siting of Zeem. That always puts a smile on this kids face too.

I played solid early on, building a stack with stop n' go's and one very well timed bluff against the spot to my left. I also got a hand or two dealt to me, which I find helps a surprisingly large amount of the time. Nothing really special mind you, but getting off to a solid start just the same.

The Bad :

I busted out around 1188th. or so, of the gazillion bloggers that had entered. That I busted out there isn't actually as bad as it sounds, it was more the way I busted out that bothered me. Holding crap at the time and with a very comfortable chip stack, I jammed the stack in on a total mistake. Just as I was supposed to be clicking fold, Peb's let out a yell from upstairs in the kitchen. She burnt her hand getting dinner out of the oven. (yes she's just fine now, TYVM for asking!) Needless to say I miss-clicked and somehow, my crap didn't manage to get there.

The Ugly :

Playing at a four-handed table because some signed up and then didn't show, was verging on total re-donkulous at times. I get that the timing of the event made for some serious rushing around for a few. I also get that it's the luck of the draw if you get one of these tables too. I'm just saying that despite it not really being anyones fault, it still sucks huge, hairy Donkey Balls when it happens to you.

Pokerstars WBCOOP Event #2 goes off at the same time tonight and one things for certain, with it being PLO things could get really interesting early!

Hope to see you there!

My sincerest thanks for dropping by....


To Betfair or not to Betfair....

That indeed IS the question!

As most of you that are crazy enough to follow the exploits of this particular Poker playing idiot already know, I am a member of a fine organization just recently started up around these parts. The Canadian Amateur Poker Tour is live and local Poker, being run at several locations throughout the week. It's an organization that I feel deserves a little push whenever I get the chance, based on the owners commitment to keeping it fair and fun for everyone.

Recently the good folks at Can-Am added an on-line side to the fun, holding two games a week on the Poker client Betfair. Betfair is supporting the live games with prizes for the weekly winners in the form of a T-Shirt, and it only made sense for Can-Am to hold their games over there. Support those that support you is a good solid business plan, at least IMHO. The plus side for Betfair as I see it is, those that start playing on-line Poker at Betfair for free, might just want to deposit a little cash into the site and make it their on-line gaming headquarters. At least that's the only reason I can see, that Betfair would actually want to run these free games at all. As a side note to that, the folks at Can-Am are just starting to put the finishing touches on a few on-line cash games to be held at Betfair as well. Meaning that if you want to play in them, you'll have to deposit some cash and Can-Am gets what they want, hoping to strengthen their support with the sponsor.

Now the drawback is that Betfair is no PokerStars or FullTilt, as far as the workings of a Poker client go. It's actually quite frustrating to sit at one of their tables for the first time, as there is nothing comparable between it and any of the other descent sites out there. Having said that, I put aside my differences and started up a play account to support my friends at Can-Am.

Now here's where it all gets a bit fuzzy for me. I wanted to learn how the Poker client worked over on Betfair, prior to actually sitting down at the virtual felt with my friends. So I enter the proper member name, password etc.... and get myself into the 'Play Lobby' to find a game to learn from. I kid you not, every single game was "suspended" at that time. Every game! So I wait, and wait, and wait. Nothing!

Suddenly over in the incredibly large advertising section on the right, there pops up an invitation to a freeroll event called a "Bankroll Starter." I click the link and it takes me directly to the tourney lobby for the freeroll. Perfect I think to myself. A free way to learn the client and how it all works over here at this new, (to me) site. One little click later and I'm in.

Despite navigating my way through the client as gracefully as a certain wheelchair bound friend of ours making his way up the Las Vegas Strip, I figured it all out and I became pretty comfortable with the sites unique characteristics as I went. Enough so I guess, that I took a 1% portion of the $5.00 that had been added to the game by Betfair as a "bankroll starter." Yes kids in my very first attempt to understand Betfair, I scored a $0.05 profit!

For which I received the following:

= = = = = = = = = = = = =
CONGRATULATIONS! You’ve just won a cash prize in one of our Betfair Poker Freerolls.

Your prize has been credited on your Betfair account. To comply with Gaming regulations we need to verify your age and make sure that you are not under 18 years old. Unfortunately failing to do so would lead to the temporary suspension of your Betfair account.

In order to verify your age, please send us a copy of one document from the list below:

Personal Identification – a copy of one photo ID from the following list:
• Passport (full front photo page, including algorithm at the bottom)
• Driving License (full card)
• National Identification Card (photographic ID required)
• Citizenship Certificate

The copies of the documents have to be sent to freerollwinners@betfair.com. The sooner we receive the document, the sooner you will be able to enjoy the cash prize you’ve just won.

Please remember to inform us of your Username and good luck for your future tournaments!


• Do not send original documents, but rather copies of these documents.
• The documents must be clear and legible. NB: please DO NOT include your password in any correspondence.
• Send documents that state your residential address. Regrettably, documents addressed to a P.O. Box number are unacceptable for validation.
• Please send scans in JPEG, PDF or GIF file formats only with a maximum size of 10MB per page.
= = = = = = = = = = = = =

So if you followed along properly at home, here's the rub.

For the $0.05 they placed into my account that was set up for play money and some fun with friends, my first contact with the site administration is that they will be forced to suspend my account, should I choose not to send them a copy of my passport or drivers license.

Makes sense right?

It's not exactly like I want to yell at Betfair to get off my lawn or anything, but for cripes sake! Wouldn't you think that they make enough money out of this on-line gaming thing they do, to take the time to analyze the situation before they piss off someone that's supposed to be a potential customer?

I wanted to try FullTilt and did so, I then did the same on PokerStars. In both cases I found the sites to my liking and then, I made deposits and started an account like any other customer. It would appear to me at this time that Betfair's current business model on customer service, will make it pretty difficult for me to do the same thing over there.

But that's only my opinion, based on how they're treating me.
As with everything, Caveat emptor.

My sincerest thanks for dropping by....