Archive for the ‘Poker’ Category

Pocket Aces

Thursday, May 21st, 2009

I see way too many posts where people talk about how often they lose with pocket aces, how terrible of a hand it is, blah, blah, blah. What it usually boils down to is how they play the hand. For me I love pocket rockets as according to my database of hand histories it is my biggest winning hand by far.

The most common way people get into trouble with A’s is they slow play them. Now there is a time for slow playing such as you have a loose aggressive person acting after you that always raises, great time for a check raise there. Another case would be heads-up and you are mixing up your play. Slow playing A’s with a lot of people in the pot is just going to get you into trouble. Think about it, unless you get a great flop leaving you a closed end straight draw or a nut flush draw, you are pretty much hoping an ace hits. When you miss these conditions and you have 4 or 5 other people in the pot there is a good chance someone else hit something. So you ended up tossing chips into the pot where you probably have to fold if someone comes out aggressive post flop.

This brings up the next way people get into trouble with aces, they can’t get away from the hand. Unless you are going to try and bluff someone out of the pot what will you do if someone gets aggressive? What if someone raises, they get re-raised, and then it comes to you where the flop missed you? Still going to play them aces? Too many people do and lose too much money.

Aces aren’t a miracle hand, like any other hand in poker you have to know how to play them.

Why Am I Putting Money Into The Pot?

Sunday, May 17th, 2009

In this case I’m talking about playing No Limit Hold’em (NLH). Other then when posting the blinds or antes, you should be asking yourself this before tossing chips into the pot. If calling, why are you calling and what will you do if someone raises? If raising, why are you raising and how will you handle X number of callers or a re-raise?

Pre-flop (PF), the absolute worse reason to place chips into the pot is because you want to see a flop. Great, you want to see a flop. So if someone re-raises do you still want to see the flop? When you do see the flop how are you planning to proceed if the flop hits or misses you? Did you factor in how many people are also seeing the flop and what possible hands they may have?

Right up there for a bad reason for placing chips into the pot is you want to see where you are at in the hand. If everyone folds that tells you that everyone else thought you had the best hand or they weren’t getting pot odds to call you for their drawing hand (you did take pot odds into consideration before betting didn’t you?). Now change it to where you get a caller. Do they have you beat? Are they on a draw? Are they bluffing and looking to raise you on the turn? How about if someone raises your bet, do they have the best hand? Are they bluffing? Do they think you are bluffing and playig back at you? Do they thik your bet was an attempt to see where you are at in the hand?

The key takeaway is to know why you are putting chips into the pot and how you will proceed based on the what the table does. Never chip yourself to death, unless you are playing with me at a table.

Love Those Big Blind Specials

Saturday, May 9th, 2009

PokerStars Game #28009068128: Tournament #162358535, $0.10+$0.00 Hold’em No Limit – Level IX (200/400) – 2009/05/09 16:59:23 ET
Table ‘162358535 2’ 9-max Seat #1 is the button
Seat 1: kees nak (10315 in chips)
Seat 2: chino103 (2320 in chips)
Seat 3: Hero (2430 in chips)
Seat 4: ezoob98 (8120 in chips)
Seat 6: kim__armyan (29905 in chips)
Seat 7: couplin (3485 in chips)
Seat 8: nikosho (6080 in chips)
Seat 9: pearlly1 (7455 in chips)
kees nak: posts the ante 50
chino103: posts the ante 50
Hero: posts the ante 50
ezoob98: posts the ante 50
kim__armyan: posts the ante 50
couplin: posts the ante 50
nikosho: posts the ante 50
pearlly1: posts the ante 50
chino103: posts small blind 200
Hero: posts big blind 400
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to Hero [2d Th]
ezoob98: folds
kim__armyan: folds
couplin: folds
nikosho: folds
pearlly1: calls 400
kees nak: calls 400
chino103: calls 200
Hero: checks
*** FLOP *** [Td Tc Ts]
chino103: bets 1870 and is all-in
Hero: raises 110 to 1980 and is all-in
pearlly1: folds
kees nak: folds
Uncalled bet (110) returned to Hero
*** TURN *** [Td Tc Ts] [9s]
*** RIVER *** [Td Tc Ts 9s] [9d]
*** SHOW DOWN ***
chino103: shows [As 4d] (a full house, Tens full of Nines)
Hero: shows [2d Th] (four of a kind, Tens)
Hero collected 5740 from pot
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 5740 | Rake 0
Board [Td Tc Ts 9s 9d]
Seat 1: kees nak (button) folded on the Flop
Seat 2: chino103 (small blind) showed [As 4d] and lost with a full house, Tens full of Nines
Seat 3: Hero (big blind) showed [2d Th] and won (5740) with four of a kind, Tens
Seat 4: ezoob98 folded before Flop (didn’t bet)
Seat 6: kim__armyan folded before Flop (didn’t bet)
Seat 7: couplin folded before Flop (didn’t bet)
Seat 8: nikosho folded before Flop (didn’t bet)
Seat 9: pearlly1 folded on the Flop

Chrysler Files For Bankruptcy

Thursday, April 30th, 2009

No surprise really. Chrysler is a much different company structure wise then General Motors. What I find interesting the remarks from President Obama:

“This is not a sign of weakness but rather one more step on a clearly chartered path to Chrysler’s revival.”

And how about this?

“I have every confidence that Chrysler will emerge from this process stronger and more competitive”

My question would be “Isn’t this also true for General Motors”? Would have been a lot cheaper for the US taxpayers.

Answers For Two Poker Questions

Monday, April 20th, 2009

When sitting at a table how do I figure out who the donk or fish is?

If after 10-15 minutes you haven’t figured this out then it is you.

Is bad play or variance a reason for my recent loses?

If you have to ask this question then it is bad play.

I’m Disappointed

Tuesday, April 14th, 2009

I don’t see me mentioned by name anywhere in this report. Aren’t we glad that since President Obama entered office this is the happy land of milk and honey?

Now if the Bush administration had released something like this I’m sure Moveon.org and Daily Kos would be having a hissy fit right about now. Chances are they are hugging each other instead.

Rock, Paper, Scissors

Wednesday, April 8th, 2009

You may remember this childhood game: Rock beats scissors, scissors beats paper, and paper beats rock. Over on 2+2 poker forums this topic came up in regards to it being n a chapter in a book by Arnold Snyder called Poker Tournament Formula. In the book Synder related this to poker in the following manner: Position beats cards, stack beats position, and cards beat stack. In general I think he is correct and will look at it here.

Position beats cards should be obvious. Position is big in poker as being the last to act gives you a chance to gauge how everything reacts to a flop (talking hold’em). Given your read of the players and the texture of the flop you can use your position to win a pot with a hand that is probably beat if everyone showed their cards.

How stack beats position is also pretty obvious when you think about it. If I have to act first thus having worse position I can counter the position by either getting all of my chips into the middle or making a big enough raise where if a late position caller makes the call I know they are pretty much pot committed, or even makes me pot committed.  This can work if you are either short stack at the table or have the big stack. I see it often where people don’t know how to use their chip stack at the table. Fine with me, makes it easier to get their chips.

As to cards beating stacks, well the best hand wins. If short-stacked and the big stacks are being chip aggressive yo just need the best hand to win.

Being short stacked can actually be the trump card for a player. If you get short-stacked and the blinds are high relative to your stack position and stack size, and even cards are not going to matter.  You are just looking for a good spot to shove all of your chips into the middle and hope for the best

That’s Poker

Thursday, March 26th, 2009

Playing in a single Sit and Go on Pokerstars (9 players) and made it to the bubble. For those that don’t know a 9 person SnG pays the top 3 so when 4 people are left you are on the bubble. Great time to be aggressive and steal chips as many people tighten up just to make the money.

I’m in the BB abd get dealt As 7s. Not the greatest hand but good one on the bubble. Folds around to the SB that min raises to $200. The SB has been a losse cannon, making lots of calls with very poor hands but sucking out at the end (this is called foreshadowing). Uusally when he has been doing this so far he has been playing a hand with an ace. I make the call and hope for a good flop.

Flop comes 2 spades (8 and 6)  and a heart (k). The SB over bets the pot to $1100 and now I ‘m pretty darn sure he is holding an ace and making a steal play. I re-raise all-in and he makes the call. His hand is the Ad 2H. I was right on his hand. So I’m looking for any spade and he needs to catch a duece.

Turn brings an Ah, good card for me. Now a spade or any card lower then a 7 and I win the pot. A 2 gives him the pot, any other card and we split. Looking good for me.

The river of course is a 2. I bust out on the bubble. He had 3 outs on the river and caught one. That’s poker.

Some Tips For Beginners to Hold’em

Monday, March 23rd, 2009

Not going to cover starting hand requirements, but some general things where I see beginners make mistakes:

Not Aware of Position

Position is huge in hold’em (any poker game really). Being the last to act gives you a chance to see how the table is responding to the cards on the table. Likewise having to act early is a disadvantage, you don’t have a chance to see how the others will respond to the cards on the table.

Being A Calling Station

Sometimes calling is good, you have a drawing hands and have good odds to call or trying to trap an opponent when you have what you think is the best hand. In these situations you know why you are calling. If you are calling because you are holding an ace or just want to see the next card then let me know where you play. I could use the money.

Overvaluing Your Hand

Usually done when holding an ace or suited cards. Suited connectors can be good hands to play, 10-6 suited is a pretty crappy hand. Holding a hand of A-6 is likewise a pretty bad hand. There are times to play hands like this based on position, table image,  and stack size to name a few. Too many beginners play these hands too often.