Poker Words - A Poker Blog

Mostly a recount of my poker exploits along with a bunch of random other stuff just for fun.

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Office Poker

We had an office poker game on Thursday. Since our regular monthly game is in its three or four month long summer hiatus a bunch of us at the office couldn't take the withdrawal symptoms anymore. So we had a small home game.

There were ten of us playing, with a rather wide variety of skills/experience. We had our good players which consisted of, in no particular order Archie, myself, Noah, Jason and Aaron. And by no particular order I mean best to worst. Then we have Jason and C-Bass who are your typical play too many hands too aggressively type players. They will occasionally amass a huge chip stack due to there sheer aggression, and a few big hands, but ultimately their style is their downfall and they get eliminated fairly early. Then we have Tracie, Jullian and Richard who have either never played before, or have not played in years. They all had cheat sheets and we spent an hour before the game playing some practice hands as we were waiting for everyone to arrive.

The game itself was a lot of fun, but it was more because of the people in attendance and the conversation/banter than the actual card play. The card play was horrible.

I think I played four hands the entire tournament, and won only one of those. I think just about every hand I had contained a four and either a six or an eight. If I was really lucky maybe I would get T4o or maybe even J4.

Somewhere in the second blind level ($T10/$T20 - we started with $T75) I get my first remotely playable hand ATo but I'm out of position UTG. I decide to play it anyway and pop it to $T50. Julian is the only one who calls. Since this is more or less her first time playing I figure I have a pretty good shot of being ahead, and bet another $T50. She calls. So much for bluffing. Now I move into check to the river and hope I hit a card mode. I don't improve by the river and she turns over big slick. Oops.

The blinds go up a few more levels and I get my next playable hand. Good ole 72o. Noah, my arch nemesis is in the big blind as I raise it 3.5xBB to $T125. Noah's short stacked after losing a large amount of chips to Julian when her nut flush beat his not so nut flush. He thinks about calling for quite a while saying that he is either going all in or folding, but he can't decide which. Eventually he gives up and folds. I show my cards and smile.

Now, playing the hammer is sooo two years ago, but the implied odds are phenomenal. I'm fairly certain that the next time Noah's in the blinds and I have aces, and make the same raise, he's going to go all in without a second thought. Or maybe I'm just trying to set him up for another hammer bluff knowing that he reads this here blog on occasion.

Noah gets his revenge later on though. I have JJ in late position with $T30/$T60 blinds There are three limpers ahead of him, and he min raises. It folds to me and I push all in for my remaining $T575. The limpers fold and Noah calls with JhTh. The flop gives him two more hearts and the turn an inside straight draw which he his on the river to take a size able chunk out of my chipstack.

I held on for a little longer after that before pushing all in with pocket fives and getting four callers, one of which fopped a pair of tens to put me out of my misery.

I missed the final results because Guitar Hero was calling my name but I think Archie ended up winning with Aaron in second and Jason in third. Other than the crappy cards I had it was quite a fun night and hopefully we can turn it into a more regular thing.

Originally posted at

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Wednesday, June 27, 2007

7 Stud Hi/Lo Tourney

I qualified for another one of those WSOP fantasy league free roll tourneys on FullTilt on Monday. As you can probably guess by the title of the post it was 7 Stud Hi/Lo. I did surprisingly well considering my complete lack of skills in this particular game. 1000 people qualified, a little over 400 actually registered and maybe 200 of those actually showed up. 90 places paid. I finished just out of the money at 107. I probably could have folded to the money if I wanted to, but where's the fun in that?

Since there were so many no-shows my table started off playing three handed with the other five just contributing ante's for us. I thought I was in trouble after the fist couple of hands when the other two guys came out aggressively, but I started playing some hands and pushing them around and winning some decent sized pots and before I knew it I was the table bully. And it only took me a little over one blind level before I remembered it was Hi/Lo. In my defense though, I was trying to cook dinner at the same time so I wasn't all that focused.

Eventually two of the other dummy stacks showed up so we were five handed for a bit, but for the most part it was just us three. I completed/raised with just about any three cards. If I had top door card of the three of us I raised, if I had low door card I raised, if my hole cards could beat their door card high or low, I raised, and usually I took the pot right there. It did a lot for my confidence, but probably didn't help me out too much with that whole learning proper hand selection thing.

For most of the first hour or so I was the top 30 and had a fairly comfortable stack when all the no-shows finally started busting. As the tables started to fill up with actual players, I started loosing some hands, and stopped growing my chip stack. The killer was when seventh street brought me trip eights in a big three way pot where no one was likely to have a low, but brought one of my opponents a full house queens full of twos with all three queens hidden.

Before I knew it I was dangerously close to the next big hand I played being almost a guaranteed all-in. I decided to wait until I had what I thought would be a monster, or else hope I could just hang on until the money.

It was rolled up jacks that killed me. I think starting off with three of a kind on the short stack in this game is bad luck, because the last time I played a 7 Stud hi/lo tourney (maybe it was horse) was a blogger event and I went out when I got all my chips in with rolled up 5s only to see my opponent's up cards come heart after heart after heart, and I lost to a flush. This time it was spades. I got all my chips in on fourth street, and cringed as he got spades on four upcards, and I failed to pair any of my other cards. He actually didn't get a flush, but managed a low straight and scooped the pot.

Oh well. I did have fun playing unlike previous attempts at this format where I just sat there and got abused and felt like I had no clue what I was doing. I'll have another shot next week at the normal 7 stud event.

Originally posted at

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Saturday, June 23, 2007

Fantasy Sports Sit-N-Goes

One of the problems with Fantasy Sports, especially baseball is that through the course of a full season you tend to get bored with it. There's nothing worse than getting off to a horrible start in fantasy baseball and then having to watch your team flounder in last place for three or four months. You probably end up more or less abandoning your team which makes the league less fun and competitive for the remaining players. Even if you are doing well, don't you get tired of checking up on your team daily or weekly, month after month?

Enter Fantasy Sports Live. This brilliant idea, dreamed up by poker blogger Blinders is the short attention span version of traditional fantasy sports. Each contest lasts but one day, so there's none of the hassles of traditional leagues such as maintaining your roster, making sure your players aren't on the DL, checking the waiver wire etc. You just pick your team for the day and go.

Oh, and did I mention the best part? You get to bet on the outcomes. Bet may not be the correct term. You pay an entrance fee for the contest and can win cash prizes. Its very much like a fantasy sports SNG.

From what I understand, this is perfectly legal even in the face of the UIGEA, and they even take deposits from major credit cards and PayPal. Since anti gambling laws have carve outs for horse racing and fantasy sports, sites such as this could be the new craze for people wanting to gamble test their skill online.

Go check it out. Sign up now and get a $10 bonus on your first $100 deposit to try out the site. Use bonus code POKERWORDS and get $10 for a $50 deposit, $20 for $100 or $30 for $300.

Originally posted at

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Monday, June 18, 2007


I made my first WSOP cash tonight. Technically I wasn't actually in a WSOP event, but I did earn some cash as the result of it, so I'm counting it.

As I've mentioned before FullTilt has a fantasy poker league where you pick players to money in each event and get points based on the amount of cash they win. For each event the top 1000 fantasy teams qualify for a freeroll.

I qualified for event #3 I think but the tournament for that ran yesterday. Only 300+ of the 1000 people registered for the tourney, but I was on vacation and by the time I got to my hotel room I had already busted out in 167th place. Top 90 pay. Oh well. I did get a free hat for being in the top 50 in fantasy points.

I also qualified for event #7, the $2000 Omaha Hi event and with the freeroll running tonight. I We're now at the 2 hour break and we've just hit the money. So I have won at least $10 at this year's WSOP. Go Me.

Either last year I only qualified in Holdem events, or they mixed it up this year. Which ever game was played in the tourney for which you finish in the top 1000 fantasy players, that is the game that is played in the freeroll.

So I just cashed in a Omaha tournament. Sure 1/4 people who actually registered cashed, and I'm guessing most of them don't know what they are doing in Omaha, but I still cashed. And for the record I don't know what I am doing either.

I started off not having any clue what I was doing and dropping my stack to about half of what I started with. Then I went on a bit of a run, hitting my draws, picking up orphaned pots and stealing blinds from the abundance of people who didn't show up.

Then I started running into a number of aggressive players and didn't know what to do. I have no idea what kind of hand is worth defending pre-flop in Omaha, so I folded a ton, and limped into the money.

I managed to hang on for 27th place and a fat $10 for my efforts. If had lasted until 19th I could have doubled it at $20. I was hoping for a top 10 finish because the they are entered into a freeroll at the end where the winner gets a seat to the 2008 WSOP which is probably my best shot at making it. Alas it was not to be.

On of the problems with pot limit tournaments is that you can't go all-in pre-flop without some cooperation from the rest of the table, which meant the all-in tards were forced to play their hands which in turn made the tourney last longer. On the other hand maybe that helped be because even when I was bored and just wanted to push and end it I couldn't.

I'm registered for the Stud Hi/Lo later this week. That should be interesting. I suck at Omaha, but I look like an expert compared to my 7-Stud skills. Hi/Lo? I might as well close my eyes and mash on the keyboard.

Originally posted at

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