On a Heater, Zoom Poker

Posted by: Fundy  :  Category: Uncategorized

Well things have certainly gone my way since I last wrote and it’s all because I started playing Zoom Poker on PokerStars.  I naturally play a little on the tighter side anyway and this sort of game plays into my hands I think.  For those that may not know, Zoom Poker is where you get dealt a hand and if you want to fold, you click the Fast Fold button and you are immediately dealt onto another table with a bunch of different players.  You don’t like that hand, fold and once again dealt onto another table.  I believe the idea was first done on Full Tilt Poker called Rush Poker.  I didn’t do very well when I first started out with it and for various reasons.  I actually don’t think I played tight enough at the beginning.  Sometimes I would try to outplay people, or try to bully through a hand.  In a game where all you have to do is fold and get dealt into another hand right away it’s not too often that someone is bluffing.  Why take a chance and lose when you can just move on right away?  Actually, I should amend that a bit.  It’s not too often that people are bluffing on the turn and river.  Everyone and their dog continuation bets the flop after preflop raising but in this case it’s even smarter to c-bet.  If they call, you know they have something.  In this day and age that’s not always the case.  When you watch guys on TV like Tom Dwan, Jason Mercier, Phil Ivey, etc. where they’re always looking for a way to win the chips, people try to emulate that style.  Dwan has said on numerous occasions that he’ll call a bet looking for a card that he can bluff.  It’s such a high level of thinking nowadays.

I’m not saying nobody does it in Zoom Poker, just not very many.  At least not on the levels that I’ve been playing which, up to this point, have only been .05/.10, .10/.25 and now .25/.50.  I will play that way in certain situations because I just don’t believe someone has the hand they’re representing.  I will float to see what happens on the turn or see if I can pick up a draw to lead at.  One of the other things I’ve noticed is that95% of the time if it gets folded around to the button that person will raise.  And almost every time I will fire back at that person no matter what I have.  I’d say it works about 75% of the time.  These people are using the same thought process I am as far as people mainly playing premium hands.  Obviously someone will have a hand and will re-raise you, or they don’t believe your raise and will play their position.  That’s OK because for as many times as the person on the button is folding to your re-raise, you’re still making money on the occasional hand that plays back at you.  If I raise in early position with AJ or A 10 and someone re-raises I will fold almost 100% of the time.  You’re so dominated most of the time that I think it’s much better to simply find a better spot.

So, a few nights ago I was playing .05/.10 and my bankroll had started to rise pretty rapidly.  I knew this was going to be a tough grind because using my rule of not moving up until I had 100x the big buy in, the difference between that and the next level of .10/.25 is pretty significant.  But I went on a serious run of great cards, well timed bluffs and some luck and next thing I knew I was right at the $250 mark.  I moved up and just started killing it right away.  I started that night with $215 in my account and at the end of the night finished with just under $500.  Considering the blind levels I think that’s pretty good.  So the next night I moved up to .25/.50.  Now, I should point out here that normally I wouldn’t just move up because of one or two really good sessions.  But, I’ve played this level enough in the past to know that I can play and beat this level too and so far I haven’t been disappointed.  I fold a heck of a lot more than I used to in certain situations during a normal ring game.  For example, I might limp in early position with a medium to low suited connector in a regular ring game and depending on the size of the raise, maybe I call and maybe I fold.  Now, 9 times out of 10 I just fold.  Same with ace/rag in early to middle position.  If I start to win a little bit I’ll raise sometimes in those spots to mix it up.  While there may be something like 300 or more people in the player pool, people do still remember how you play in certain hands.  I know I do.  My account is now almost at $700 and hopefully will keep rising.  It’s a perfect time of year to try and bring in some extra cash and my goal will be to get up to $2000 by the end of November.  Wish me luck!

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Long Time No Write

Posted by: Fundy  :  Category: Uncategorized

It’s been a long time since I’ve even considered writing on here.  Well, that’s not entirely accurate.  I really haven’t had the time to play any poker at all and without being able to play it’s hard to write about results one way or the other isn’t it?  I ended up having to work 65 hours a week and being a single Dad of a preteen who plays a lot of sports takes up almost every hour of the day.  Sometimes I try to sleep in there as well.

Now though, I’m down to one job after getting promoted and I’ve moved in with my girlfriend and her kids as well.  FOUR kids in the house now instead of one and while that sounds like I still may not have as much time to myself it’s actually turned into quite the opposite.  My girlfriend is very supportive of my playing poker online when I get the chance (especially when I’m winning) as I have recently gotten the bug to start again.  I had cashed out most of my account on PokerStars and had taken out most of it on FullTilt before they got shut down as well.

I had $20 on my Stars account and decided one night, when shockingly nobody was home, to try playing again for a little while.  Well, with my normal rule of not playing any limit below 100x the max buy in, .01/.02 it is.  I’m proud to say that I’ve worked that up to a high point of $200 and currently stand at around $175 in the month or so that I’ve gotten back into it.  I’ve found that I’ve come back to this site a little bit more to read up on some of the advice I’ve written in the past because I do forget that playing nickel/dime, a lot of players don’t understand some of the “stories” I’m trying to tell in certain situations.  Players see they have top pair and just call, hoping it’s good.  I played a little above my comfort zone, bankroll wise, and saw that it works a little more.

Anyway, I think I’m going to start doing this some more to see how well I can play and writing has always been therapeutic as well, especially after a bad session.  Hopefully results can keep going up and I’m going to see if I can try playing more tournaments also.  My tournament game is absolutely lousy right now and I need to keep playing them more to get better.  I also wanted to post some thoughts about the Lederer Files, the first interview Howard Lederer has done since Black Sunday 15 months ago.  For now, good luck on the tables

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PLO and Deal Making

Posted by: Greg  :  Category: My Results, Poker Tips

Well I decided to post this quickly as the tourney is still freshly on my mind. I made another solid run last night, this time in a pot limit omaha (PLO), $26 buy-in on Full Tilt. I also made a semi deep run in a small buy on Pstars in a omaha hi lo tourney, finishing 30th out of over 1200 people.

There were some significant hands along with significant runs during this tournament the propelled me from an average stack to chip leader. My first huge hand was in very much a cooler situation but I feel the other guy over played his hand hugely.

I held JJ85, the pot was not raised pre, the flop came down J74 rainbow. This was a heads up pot where I had position, the other player led out and we were both quite deep, double average-ish. I raised just more than a min raise, he immediately re raised me the minimum back. At this point, my thought process is this, he is going to have one of two hands, a lower set or a huge wrap draw, something like 5 6 8 9. I re raised him back, hoping it was the set and I was right, he had 44 but he also had 56 for the open ender, he bricked out and I won a huge pot.

there was also a point where I figured out the guy to my left was a very loose player with a ton of chips and I felt I could really benefit from playing him. He started with over 37K and I had about 16K when I started a run that took me to 40K and him down to 14K, I won 7 hands in a row, 5 of them against him with two showdowns where I had nuts!!

After that, I was close to the chip lead, 27 players paid and I held the chip lead for 90% of the time from 30 down to 10. I entered the final table 2nd in chips and ended up chopping 5 way for just under 2nd place money, I was sitting in 3rd place at the time, just behind the two chip leaders.

So, this is a great time for me to chat about two items, PLO strategy (in multi table tourneys) and deal making. Strategy in any multi table tourney is huge and if you can find something that works, success won’t be far behind. First off pot limit tournaments never have antes, this allows you to sit on stacks for a very long time. So, if you’re short stacked, you can play very tight and hang on, until you start flopping hands. On the short stack, I recommend attempting to see cheap flops with high return hands, ie, any pairs, double suited, connected hands, etc, etc. Obviously there is going to be some gamble in there, but with any short stack play, gamble is going to be involved.

Moving on to playing a big stack, in this position, I love to control the play with limps or min raises. At one point during that tourney last night, I was limping 80% of the pots and betting out on the flop to get folds about 80% of the time. If you raise I recommend to only call re raises against opponents that can’t hurt you. It is very easy to play just the short stacks in these tourneys, risking 15% of your stack or less to add very useful chips.

My biggest recommendation is, don’t get married or overplay high pocket pairs. Pocket pairs are the downfall for most players in this game, mainly aces. Did you know, if you have pocket aces and no draw post flop against a player that has just one pair and 3 other cards, the odds are almost even? Aces are good in situations where you can get most of your stack in, heads up, pre flop. In these situations you will most likely be up against KK or AKJT type hands, which is exactly what you want.

The next reccomendations is, don’t pay off river bets when draws get there, no matter how strong you were prior to that river hitting, the guy is going to have it 8 times out of 10 and the bets are usually big enough to never be profitable over time. Key to PLO, let your decent, big hands go.

On to deal making, man this is another long post, sorry, lol!! When it comes to deal making you have to factor in a lot of things. We made a deal 5 handed last night, first place would have paid, over $1500 and 5th place was under $500, that is a big spread. Not to mention first place was $1550 and 2nd place was $980. In this situation, if I can lock up close to 2nd place money, this deal should be made every time. I may have been the favorite to win last night but PLO comes down to a lot of flips and luck so it’s not as easy as saying I should get 2nd place everytime in these spots. I would have almost guaranteed that I would have come 3rd so taking almost $200 more than 3rd place money and $40 less than 2nd place money was value for me. Don’t let your ego get in the way here, poker is about variance and locking money down, vs taking chances, it’s the smart thing to do. Anytime you can get in to top 3 range in tournaments, that’s where you want to be!!

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Deep run & what do you do with QQ in this spot

Posted by: Greg  :  Category: My Results, Poker Tips

Hey,

Well, after a nice Easter long weekend spent in Disneyland, I flew back in to town yesterday and played the daily double tourneys last night on Full Tilt. I went out of one early on but I was able to build a nice stack in the other one when this hand came up.

Average stack was about $26K, my stack was $20K, re raiser had $30K and first all in had $45K. So I raise AA up in 1st position to $3675, blinds were 700/1400 I think. 3rd position re raises to just over $12K, leaving himself with $18K behind, next position ships, I call and the re raiser calls, quickly. The hands, my AA, re raiser QQ and first all in, KK.

So what do you do with QQ there, I know for me, I can easily fold QQ here. Perhaps earlier in the tourneys, I may not because people can get a little crazy on occassion but when blinds are big, deeper in any multi, there is no way one of the all in guys don’t have AA or KK here. The re raiser still had half of average which is a playable stack, for the times you are good here but still in a flip against AK, it’s never profitable to call, IMO. I did win the hand, which threw me right in to the mix in this tourney, with about 100 people left.

I proceeded to build my stack up to over $100K, calling smaller stacks all ins with AQ or better, or pocket 88’s or better. I stayed above average until we got down to about 27 people, picking my spots well and grinding, lots of folding.

We got down to about 15 people, I fell below average but was able to get doubled up in a couple very good spots, my AK vs AJ, my 86 clubs vs 87 spades, after a 963, two club flop. I made the final table in about 6th spot out of 9 left, fell to the short stack with 8 people left. From there it was mostly all in poker, I got it in good three of four times, holding each time and grinded down to 4 players, where I ended up being extremely short, we played 4 handed for a lot of hands, until I finally shipped QT in the small blind in to KT, for about 7 big blinds, when blinds were 12K/24K. I didn’t get there and busted in 4th, which I was quite happy with.

Hopefully this means a good run is coming and I could sure use it as I’m sure everyone could!!

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Another Poker Roller Coaster

Posted by: Fundy  :  Category: My Results

Only a short post today as I have to get to bed.  What a ridiculous couple of weeks!  I started playing some of that new Rush Poker on Full Tilt and was doing absolutely great.  Good cards, good reads, and overall just good poker had me up $400 in two days playing .25/.50.  Then, in 3 days time I lost that in what can generously be called the complete opposite of the first two days.  Actually, that’s not true.  I was getting the good cards but wasn’t flopping anything remotely decent, and the play in a lot of the bigger pots I played was so horrible it was unbelievable.  Ridiculous suckout after suckout, with two occasions having flopped set over set only to see the person river the one outer.  Read more…

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My Intro

Posted by: Greg  :  Category: My Results, Poker Tips

Well I would like to thank Justin for the introduction. I’m really looking forward to actually documenting some of my thoughts and looking forward to useful feedback. As mentioned I have had some nice scores and great experiences over the last year that I will be sharing with you, including two trips to Vegas where I played in a couple of WSOP events and also watched a large amount of the WSOP Main Event final table. Today, I’m going to introduce myself and share all this with you, in the future I plan to break down a lot of my thoughts on making money online, playing sit n go and multi table tournaments. Read more…

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New Contributing Writer, Isildur1 is Back

Posted by: Fundy  :  Category: My Results

I wanted to take the time to introduce a new writer for this blog/site.  His name is Greg and he goes by the name of gr24 on Full Tilt.  Over the past year or two, he has had pretty good success in online tournaments, garnering a 3rd place finish I believe it was in an FTOPS Omaha event and a $24K payday.  There have been other deep runs as well but I will let him introduce himself in greater detail.  He will be writing about a lot of the similar things I do, detailing how he’s been doing and hopefully some tips as well.  I’m not a very good Omaha player at the moment so I’m hoping maybe he will provide some of his own insight into the game as well as No Limit Hold Em.  Welcome Greg! Read more…

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Bluff Magazine 2009 Awards Results

Posted by: Fundy  :  Category: Poker News

Well, the results are in for this year’s Bluff Magazine Award winners.  Sorry it has taken this long to get the results (if you don’t know them already).  I’ve just been really busy but I’m planning on writing more often.  As for the the winners there were a few surprises, a few that were not surprising at all, and a few that could have gone either way.  Below are the results compared to who I thought was going to win… Read more…

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Bluff Magazine 2009 Awards

Posted by: Fundy  :  Category: Poker News

At this time every year, Bluff Magazine gets ready to dole out it’s annual Readers Choice Awards.  This year there are 14 categories and 4 choices in each category.  I haven’t seen if the winners have been announced yet so I will pick who I think should win and who probably will win in most of the major categories.  There are some categories, such as best Podcast or best Poker Forum that I won’t even try to guess a winner as I just don’t know enough about them.  Feel free to voice your own opinion though. Read more…

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“But I’ve Invested So Much Already”…So?

Posted by: Fundy  :  Category: Poker Tips

There is a very common mistake people make at the poker table and it’s thinking the money they’ve already invested in a pot matters in their decision making on later streets.  You’ll hear something like, “Well I’ve already put in so much.  I have to call now.”  This couldn’t be further from the truth and flawed thinking like this will only cost you even more money. Read more…

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