Saturday, December 29, 2012

Hello Again

With the new year fast approaching I am trying to get things in order.  I have moved into a condo in Henderson, finished furnishing it, and am finally ready to put all my concentration back into poker.  With my bankroll now at an all-time low I have no choice but to get after it with much fervor. 

I'm not one to make New Year's Resolutions but in 2013 I will make my best effort to study more, play more, and tilt less.  And most of all, avoid working for the man.

Many thanks to Mr. Sub(optimal)liminal for prodding me back to the computer.  I plan on making more posts, even if they are shorter in length.

Monday, August 27, 2012


In the midst of this 2 week break even stretch, which has had it's share of ups & downs, I need to reiterate some basic lessons to myself.  Listening to different sessions on I've realized it all comes down to this:

1)Control tilt
2)Play your "A" game
3)It's all one long game
4)Let the game come to you (don't force things)

Thank you John Kim & Nick DiVella for the insight & reminders.  Now if I can just remember these things.  I may write them down on a note pad & take it with me to the table to remind me.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012


Man it's been a crazy month so far.  I'm still up for the month but it's been very swingy.  Big wins followed by big losses.  Very strange, but I guess that's the nature of the beast.

Played an interesting hand at Wynn the other day.  Villain & I both have ~$600.  I'm in the cutoff with K7hh & limp after 2 others.  Button limps, SB completes, BB checks.  Flop is Th3h6h giving me the 2nd nuts.  My idea on this flop is to bet about half pot if checked to me; I need to see where the Ah is & I want to make any possible flopped sets pay to pair the board.  Surprisingly an EP limper fires $18.  With 3 others left to act my thinking is now to just call, string them along, & reevaluate the turn.

The button calls but then the SB check raises to $50.  The BB folds, EP who led for $18 folds, leaving it up to me.  Now I'm trying to put SB on a range of hands.  I take the nut flush out of the equation because I think he would just call & try to string the rest of us along.  I put him squarely on 2 pair, a set, or a smaller flush.  If he has any of that I want to get as much money as possible in now, but don't want to lose him.  So I "spring the trap" & raise to $140.  To my additional surprise the button flat calls my raise.  I immediately know he has the ace of hearts.  SB also calls.

Turn is an offsuit 8, changing nothing.  SB checks & I instantly jam my remaining $320.  Button folds immediately in disgust & SB tanks for about 15 seconds before calling.  River is the 4h.  I see the button slump in his chair in agony.  I table my flush & SB shows TT for flopped top set.  So the dealer pushes the ~$1150 pot to me.  I almost threw up.

Anyway, I'm taking the night off to try to get my sleep schedule on some kind of normalcy.  This wake up at 3-4pm, fall asleep at 7am crap is for the birds.  When I was winning in July I was up by noon, playing until about midnight, and asleep by 2-3am.  Plus I have some errands to run & can't get some errands accomplished at night.

For any Howard Stern fans the Ronnie Mund Block Party & Poker Tournament is going to be at the Hard Rock Casino Saturday night.  I kind of want to go, and it's only $25 for the party.  The poker tourney is $250, but I don't plan on playing unless I go on a tear this week.  Also excited about Guns n Roses taking up residency here soon.  I know it's not the real GnR but if the price is right, I'm there.

Watching the WSOP coverage on ESPN.  Next week I may get some TV time, so keep your eyes open.  That's about all from Vegas.  Looking forward to my parents coming in next weekend.  Finally get to eat some real (expensive) food!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

How a Fold Lead to a Win

I know it's been a little over a week since I've posted anything, and while I could go on about what's been happening the last week - bad back, horrendous start to August & the rebound - I want to discuss a hand that played out a couple of days ago.  Matter of fact, I only remembered this hand about 15 minutes ago & felt the need to write about it.  OMG, poker content!

Anyway, I was at the Mirage playing a 1-2 game.  I don't usually play there due to bad rulings/bad results, but word on the street was the games were really soft this week, so I decided to check it out.

I will preface the hand I want to talk about with a hand that happened immediately prior.  I was in the 4 seat & raised to $10 preflop with QQ, & only the 5 seat called.  The flop came J high rainbow, I bet $15, he calls.  Turn was a baby, I checked to pot control/induce a bluff, he check back.  River paired the board.  I just knew villain had a jack, so I value-bet about $40, he calls.  I show the QQ, he shows JT, and I scoop.

Now the hand of note, which was the very next hand.  UTG limps, all fold, I look down at KK & raise to $12, only the limper called.  Flop comes down J76 rainbow.  Perfect!  He checks, I fire $20, he thinks for about 5 seconds & calls.  Turn brings an 8.  He checks, I fire $45.  Villain now thinks for about 10 seconds then shoves another $125 on top.  What the hell?  I get TWO premium hands in a row & this guy wants to shove on me?  So I tank.

I think about all the possibilities of hands that he has.  I realize he has played kind of solid and hasn't gotten out of line to this point.  I take about a solid minute, finally apologize to the table for taking so long, then I did something I rarely do.  I started talking to the guy.  I wanted information.

"Do you really have 9T here?  45?"

"Did you flop your set?"

"Are you on a draw?"

The entire time the guy sat there looking away in the distance in front of him with his head resting on his hand.  But the more I talked to him the more I thought I saw him turning red.  Now I had to interpret what this meant.   I took a few seconds with this and finally determined that he was reddening because he wanted a call.  I also figured there would be better opportunities at this table to make money.  So I sighed really big & said "OK, you got it" & folded my KK face up hoping to get a show from him.

And he turned over 9Tcc for the turned straight.  I smiled & turned my head to the heavens, thanking God for helping me find a fold there.  It also dawned on me that, as with the hand prior, my reads were spot on.  As the villain was stacking his chips my neighbor in the 3 seat turned to me & said "that took a little chunk out of you, huh?"  He wasn't intending on being cruel, he was genuinely trying to be nice.  But I looked at him and said "yeah, it might have.  But if I keep making reads like that, I'm going to make some money today."

Needless to say, I left a couple of hours later up a buy in.  This leads me to 2 things.  1) A quality fold can be profitable later on, & 2) NEVER let your opponent know he made the right decision.

Thanks for reading & run good!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

July Recap & August Goals

So July ended up being pretty good.  It started off tremendous then kind of puttered out towards the end.  I still ended up making $16.50/hr. averaging 41 hours a week.  Not too bad from what I hear.  That being said I have already made some goals for the month of August.  Here goes:

1) 50 hour weeks.  It has been told to me to set a goal each day of how much to win, then stop.  I have followed that and been successful.  But to make a good living playing these stakes you need to put in volume.  So I am alternating the Stop Win goal to play somewhere, make a certain amount, then go to another location.  Will probably start playing 6 days a week, too.

2) Maintain $16/hr.  $20/hr. would be great but maybe not sustainable. 

3) Limit Expenses.  This has been a huge leak for me.  Oh, I'm up 3 buy ins the last 2 days?  Let's eat out!  Let's buy some stuff!  No more.  I'll be happy with what I have until I can move to 2-5.

4) Start exercising.  I will spring for a gym membership at UNLV - only $25 a month.  Now I just have to use it.  The plan is to work out after I wake up, eat, shower, hit the rooms.

5) Take shots at 2-5.  The 'roll is close to the imaginary number I need to start taking shots here.  If the beginning of the month goes well I'll start towards the end of the month, playing at Bellagio, where I hear the game is softer.

That's all I've thought of for now.  I will update here as the month goes along.  If you guys can think of any other suggestions don't be shy.  Thanks for reading!

Monday, July 30, 2012


July is coming to an end and it makes me sad.  I've had a pretty good month, averaging about $15 an hour, which I hear is good for 1-2 & 1-3NL.  I HAD been averaging about $20/hr. but the last 2 days have been horrible.  Still a winning month overall, plus I still have 2 days left to make it even better.

I think I have been controlling my tilt a little better at the tables.  I have been reading The Mental Game of Poker by Jared Tendler & think it is awesome.  That, along with subscriptions to Crush Live Poker by Bart Hansen & Stack Em Coaching have helped transform my game & approach.

Anyway, on to life.  I flew back to Houston last weekend to surprise my 5 year old for her birthday.  I had an incredible time with both my girls, taking them to Chuck E. Cheese for Ashley's birthday & Toys R Us for birthday presents.  The best times were when we would be back at their house - the wife was good enough to let me stay with them, thanks K! - watching TV & Ashley would crawl up the couch & lay with me.  She'd tell me she loved me & how much she missed me.  I'm grateful to have such an affectionate daughter.  She bawled when they took me to the airport, which broke my heart.  She tried telling K that she was "going with Daddy.  I'll be back in 3 days."  Oh how I wish.  I miss that little stinker.

I have decided I'm fat enough & am going to do something about it.  It's so bad now that when I walk from the parking garage to most poker rooms my lower back starts to hurt.  Plus when I saw that picture of Antonio Esfandiari & me I was appalled.  It never looks that bad in the mirror!  So I have found a gym at UNLV, which is literally 3 minutes away.  I haven't visited it yet but plan to either Tuesday or Wednesday.  From what I've read it's only $25/month, you can use all the facilities, and you can get personal training at a huge discount.  Now I just need to join, and get there as soon as I wake up in the afternoon.

Along with this weight loss thing I am going to attempt to eat more organic foods.  Or let me say, less processed foods.  That includes bread, pastas, chips, basically shit that needs to be made.  I will try to eat more living stuff: fruits, veggies, red meat, chicken, fish.  I will be purchasing a George Foreman to help cook some stuff.  I'm looking forward to the challenge.  I'm ready to put in the work.  I plan on keeping everyone updated on here as to how it goes.  Just writing about poker stuff is kind of boring anyway.

I guess that's all from Vegas.  Thanks for reading!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Outta Here

I'm leaving for the airport in a few minutes.  Heading to Houston to surprise my 5 year old for her birthday.  I will be without the laptop so no posts until I get back - like I make a lot anyway.  I'll probably post a trip report when I get back, although it will be lacking in poker content.  Peace guys.