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Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Poker Weekend

So on Friday night at 11:00pm my friend and I left for Ottawa for the weekend. Besides the traffic right by Toronto, because of one of the highways being closed for construction, the trip went pretty smooth. We did 140kmph all the way there and it only took us about 4 hours instead of 5. We played a little poker before going to sleep. The next day we had a tournament to go to which wasn't too far from us. There were about 30 players signed up but I didn't get any good cards and my best hand was A9, which I ended up going all-in on and losing. Later we played 1/2NL and ended up down $10 when I couldn't really get any good cards. We left around 3am and went back to the apartment to go to sleep.

The next morning we woke up bright and early at 8am, ate breakfast and headed to the U.S. border. The trip was about 2 hours and the people at the border didn't give us too much hassle. We arrived at the Mohawk Casino around 10:00am, played some video poker for fun and signed up for the 12pm NL tourny. It was $50 buy-in, $20 rebuy and $20 addon. I saw some really nice cards early on, and saw KK back to back, however they got cracked both times. Once by an A on the flop and the 2nd time I was allin preflop I had two callers, TT and JJ, and the board ended up 68739 to give the TT a straight. I rebought and held on for a bit until I 66, flopped a set and doubled up. I then doubled up again a little while later after my JJ hit a set against someone's AQ with an A on the flop. Finally I tripled up when I went all-in with my QQ with a ragged flop and JJ and 88 both called. The players here were just horrible, they called with any A, called when they hit absolutely anything and lots went to showdown. When they really did have monsters they'd check it. I got to the final table and in the money. I ended up busting out 6th when I tried to steal on the button but a low pp called me and I ended up being blinded out after that. I finished 6th out of 41 players and won $80 US. First place, another horrible player that saw a bunch of great hands, AA maybe 5 times, took home more than $2,000 US. The tournament players were absolutely horrible and if I played in one everyday I'd end up in the money at least 3/5 times. They actually do have tournaments everyday but I don't live close enough to be able to attend them regularly.

For the rest of the day I played 3/6 stakes. There were so many old people, shaking and not knowing what they were doing. They'd call all the way down to the river with nothing sometimes. I lost all of my tournament earnings to these horrible players rivering me, it was just ridiculous, and there is nothing you can do about it. All the casino have such horrible players, I believe the only way to win is if you play NL because they aren't willing to risk all their money in one pot. With stakes they have $400 infront of them so they don't care if they call an extra $12 to go to showdown, and there's so many people in the pot someone always ends up making two pair or some straight.

It was a fun trip and probably this weekend I'm going to go back with my friend to Casino Rama for another poker filled day. Hopefully I won't get sucked out as much.

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Friday, June 25, 2004

Casino Rama - They Deal Excitement, BIG TIME!

Yesterday was my friend's birthday, and since we all love poker so much and he finally turned 19 we decided to take the 2 hour trip to Orillia and go to Casino Rama for a night full of fish invested, low limit hold 'em poker! The traffic there was kind of bad at the start since we ran into rush hour. We left at 5 since that was the earliest I could leave. We arrived at around 8:00 and as soon as I saw the enormous building, in the middle of nowhere I already fell in love. There is absolutely nothing in Orillia, it's up north in the middle of nowhere, the only thing there is the casino. We walked in, showed id, got our stamp and headed right for the poker room. I quickly put my name down for 2-5 hold 'em, they had 2-5, 5-10, and 10-20 so I went for the lowest one. Everything was too expensive for me, I'm poor after all, right? :) I got seated within 10 minutes and bought-in for $100.

The entire table was a bunch of mid to old guys, they all sucked though. After a while a few more young players joined the table, only one of them was okay. Every game there was incredibly loose, the entire table seeing the flop sometimes, even after a raise. After having a couple of my two pair hands busted by people turning or rivering two pair I was down to a measly $18! I looked down and saw 99 in the SB, almost the entire table saw the flop again. The flop was 79T and I bet out, since it was only $2 to call pretty much every did. Turn bought an A and I bet again, $5, 2 callers. River was a 6 and I bet hoping my hand was the best, the BB raised to $10 and the other player folded. I called my remaining $4 and I was all-in. He turned over A7 for two pair and I took down the pot which brought me to around $50. An orbit later I had AKo in the SB and raised when it got to me, 3 callers. AJ9 on the flop and I bet, everyone called but wouldn't call my turn bet. Within a couple hands I made back almost everything and was only down $3. I got up and went to eat dinner with my friends.

After dinner we sat down again and I got to a great start. BB special gave me two pair, my KK held up in a raised pot preflop where everyone called and within 30 minutes I was up to $60. After this it was downhill. I had AA twice and both times they got cracked, once by 54o and the other time by 62s. My JJ got cracked by 68o and my two pair got rivered by a higher two pair. I ended up losing my profit and $50 of my own money. The people there were just incredible, they'd call with anything hoping to hit their 2 outer. One hand I had OESFD, the board paired on the flop though. I ended up turning a flush however an old man, who at first thought was a good player called people's bets and even bet raised himself with nothing but pocket 2's. He ended up rivering a 2 for a boat.

Bad Beat of the Night:

I'm dealt AA in LP, 6 calls so far, I raise to $4 and they all call.
Flop comes 9d 8d 4c. Everyone checks to me, I bet $2, 3 callers.
Turn is 5s. Everyone checks to me, I bet $5, 2 callers.
River is 7s. First person to act bets $5, we both call.

MP shows 9Ts for a pair of 9's.
I show AA for a pair of A's.
Get this...EP shows 62h for a straight.

He didn't have any reason to call preflop but he did, no reason whatsoever to call on the flop, not a single heart was on the board, even on the turn all he could wish for was a 7 on the river and he hit. Runner-runner straight, great hand :)

All in all I thought it was a lot of fun, I played poker for 6 hours and loved every minute of it even though I ended up losing some of my money. I'm not sure exactly if it's just at the low 2-5 tables where people play this loose and fishy or do they play like this at every limit. If they don't it might be more profitable for me if I went a little higher, maybe to 5-10 because unless you get lucky you'll end up getting rivered by some old asian man with no teeth calling to the river looking for his runner-runner straight and hitting.

Tomorrow morning I'm heading to Ottawa, 5 hour trip, for the tournament, first prize will be around $1.5k-2k so let's hope I make it far, maybe even win. On Sunday I'm going to the Mohawk Casino in NY which is about 2 hours from Ottawa for some more casino action.

Wish me luck!

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Wednesday, June 23, 2004

First Poker Trip

This weekend my friend and I are going up to my apartment in Ottawa. We're going to a poker tournament, around 60 people, $40 buy-in, $20 rebuys and add-ons. My roommate, who we're going to meet there, won last time and took home a grand. This tournament is on Saturday close to my apt. On Sunday we're going to head to Mohawk Casino and stay there for the day. This'll be my first time playing poker in a casino so let's hope I win so I can come home happy. I'll write about how everything went when I get back.

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Saturday, June 19, 2004

Going Slow

This month has really sucked for me, my bankroll has barely moved and I can't breakthrough and clear the $3000 mark so that I never have to look back. I just keep idling around it, I win a little, I lose a little, I win a lot and lose a lot. The only thing I really got out of playing this month was a bunch of free poker things like shirts, hats and my poker chip set which should be arriving today or tomorrow. Right now it's about 3 hours away (UPS tracking kicks ass). After withdrawing my money from PokerStars because I was pissed off, I re deposited money into their after my friends were playing a 2-table 18 player tourny. I finished 2nd after having a pretty big chip lead over 2nd place but ended up losing when he made some really weird calls with K or Q high after one of my draws missed and I went all-in. I didn't see many good hands but I stayed in there and stole a lot of blinds to keep me alive. When we were down to 5 I started to take control, play smart and I quickly knocked out 2 people. I went on to knock out the 3rd place too when he became so shortstacked he was pretty much all-in every hand. He'd let us steal all his blinds and would rarely play back. I'm going to play a few MTT's there today and a few more SnG's to see where it goes.

Is it just me or has PartyPoker just been horrible lately, and by horrible I mean much better than before. At the 100NL tables I'm rarely seeing any action, just a couple of limpers, and everyone folds to a raise bigger than 4x which is sad. I remember the days where people would be reraising with any two face cards or even a low pocket pair, they'd be pushing on a rag flop with A high and betting their gutshots hard. WSOP airs at the beginning of July so I hope this brings in a nice swarm of fish. Until then I'm going to keep playing smaller stakes on smaller sites and see where that goes.

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Wednesday, June 16, 2004

No More Experimenting

I've decided to stop experimenting and losing my money. While limit is still a great game I just can't stand having my AA or KK cracked by a small pocket pair or suited connectors when more than half of the table calls all the raises, I just can't protect my hand. Over the past few days I lost around $600 doing this so I stopped and last night I 4 tabled the 100NL like the good ol' times. I ended up winning back $400 so I'm still down but at least not as much. I'm almost finished my raked hands at Aztec Riches so as soon as that's done they'll be shipping my poker chips. I can't wait for those! Yesterday I played at a friends house, it was an 8 player tourny, $20 buy-in. I came in 3rd and got my money back. I got lucky a couple of times when I was all-in and outdrew my opponent when he had the better hand so I'm happy I got that far. I've had some really bad cards in live games though, I can't remember the last time I saw AA or KK, even any high pocket pair. Another player at the table had AA 3 times, lucky him. There's not much else new besides that.

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Monday, June 14, 2004

Bonus Whoring

I haven't started bonus whoring the blackjack casinos but yesterday I deposited $100 at Aztec Riches Casino using the link at Poker Source Online. If you signup through their links you can get the bonus money from the casino as well as a free 300 piece 11.5g chip set case included. You just need to play 150 raked hands, you get your $50 bonus money and they ship you the chips, easy huh? At the end of this month I'm going to withdraw about $1000 from my online bankroll and start bonus whoring the blackjack casinos with the autoplay options.

I'm also looking forward to finally play poker at a casino at the end of this month. My friend is finally turning 19 and we're going down to Casino Rama which is a few hours away from us. I can't wait, I'm excited :)

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Friday, June 11, 2004

Updated Links

I've added some more links on the left. I personally like Felicia Lee and Glenn's journals the best, I guess I just love reading trip reports and poker stories from live games. If anyone wants there link added just comment or email me.

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Playing 1/2 Limit

This morning I took quite a beating at the 1/2 NL tables at PokerStars. I'd flop two pair only to lose a big pot to a person who turned a higher two pair, this happened 3 times within 5 minutes and I quickly dropped $100. I decided to take a break from playing NL ring games for awhile and have some fun somewhere else. I'm playing more and more multi's at PokerStars everyday and today I wanted to also try the 1/2 limit at PartyPoker. I started with 1 table, opened a second one within 10 minutes and finally opened a 3rd one about 20 minutes ago. I've been playing these tables for about 2 hours and I'm up $150, not too bad right? I've doubled my chipstack at each table from the initial $50. The play here is pretty bad and I take down a lot of pots easily. I admit, I chased quite a few flushes but the odds were there. I think I might stick to this for awhile, see how much I can make then probably move up to the 2/4 since 1/2 is kinda low limit.

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Thursday, June 10, 2004

Poker Outfit

Today I received my PartyPoker hat in the mail from the affiliate program. It looks very stupid on me. On its way is my PokerStars T-Shirt and once I receive it I'll have my entire poker outfit, ready for the big tournaments, not!

I've been playing more MTT's, I've played a couple today on PokerStars. Both of them were re-buys which I don't like because people play very stupid at the beginning but eh, what can you do. I haven't placed really well anywhere but its bound to happen eventually, right? PartyPoker has updated its software with new add-ons like small MTT's with 30 players and they also implemented a Bad Beat Jackpot for limit tables, but it's horrible. You have to beat quad 10's or higher to get the jackpot. I'm sure people will like the new changes though, more places to play and more variation to the games.

I've also updated the link to The Poker Chronicles, it's been moved to it's own domain name.

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Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Strong Return

After laying low at Party and not playing much at all I decided to play 1 table today of 100NL. These past few days Party has been treating me poorly, I haven't been getting any hands and I've pretty much been getting blinded down. I played at PokerStars, 4 tabling the .5/1 and 1/2 NL tables. The players there aren't AS bad as PartyPoker however they still lack a lot of skill and make some incredibly stupid plays. I'm up $200 at PokerStars since June 1st and I also ordered a T-Shirt with my 500 FPP's that I've collected. I'm about halfway to receiving my $150 bonus money from PS also.

Anyways, back to Party. I sat down today at *only* 1 100NL table, after getting nothing for awhile I finally picked up pocket 6's in MP. I call the BB ($2) and the player on the button raises it to $6. After having everyone before me call I also call hoping that for once in a blue moon I'll finally hit a set that will pay off. The board comes 962 rainbow. Checks around to the raiser on the button who bets the pot around $20. The player directly to my right goes all-in for $87 and I raise all-in for $94. The button, who has a stack of around $250 calls. Turn and rag are both rags of spades but that doesn't matter. Button shows KK for a pair, player to my right shows 88, not sure what he was doing, and my set of sixes takes down a pot of around $270. A couple hands later I'm on the button and there's a raise to $7, with 4 callers in front of me I also call with A7d. The flop is all diamonds and after all the betting and calling I take down a $180 pot.

So for today Party has been good to me and things have finally gone my way. I'm going to continue playing 1 table for a bit and later tonight when the evening crowd comes to play I'll go back to my 4 tabling.

The only other update I've done is updated my bankroll status on the left. I'll try to keep it updated every week, even though I'm not sure if anyone even reads this blog.

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Friday, June 04, 2004

PokerStars MTT's

This month I deposited $200 from my bankroll into PokerStars to see how they were and mainly focus on playing some cheaper MTT's than at Party. PokerStars offers some nice $1/$3/$5 MTT's that I've been playing the past few days that I like much more than the $20 and $30 ones at Party. Yesterday I had my best performance in the $5+.5 PokerStars MTT. I started off pretty much doubling up the first hand I had, QJo. 3 people in the pot and the board came 78J, I bet and they both call. Turn brings a Q for 2 pair. I bet and I'm raised quite big but still call, I didn't think he had the straight. The river brought a rag and the raiser bets big, nearly his entire stack. I called and took it down. 10 minutes later I pick up KK in the SB. Everyone folds around to the button who raises, going for a steal most likely. I re-raise and the BB re-re-raises all-in. I pushed all-in and the button folds. The BB shows AJo but can't make a comeback after I hit a K on the flop for a set. At this time I was in 14th place out of 900. I was doing good, using my stack to my advantage and making some nice plays to further increase my lead at my table. My parents then came home and had to talk to me, occupying my time for awhile while I sat out of the tournament, the blinds increased and when I finally got back which seemed like forever, most of the table had caught up. I started off so well and blew it. I couldn't make it back and after going all-in on the flop with my AQo when an A hit I lost to person who had AKs and took me out in 120th out of 1200.

I withdrew another $600 from my PP bankroll and I'm going to deposit it into PokerStars since they're running the 25% bonus offer until June 7th. I'll get a bonus of $150 but getting the FPP's is a pain in the ass. I really want the PokerStars t-shirt for 500 FPPs which will nicely accompany my PartyPoker hat which I'm getting from being in the affiliate program.

Not only will I be playing like a pro, I'll be looking like one too!

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Tuesday, June 01, 2004

A New Month

May is over and June has begun. I started testing the waters at Party at the end of April and when May rolled around I seriously started playing. I deposited $400 and have turned that into $1400, add my $400 rake that I get from the affiliate program and I have made a profit of $1400 for this month. Considering these past few weeks I haven't played nearly as much as I wanted to I think I did a pretty good job. If I hadn't lost nearly $400 yesterday from a bad string of cards followed by a couple big bad beats I would've been sitting pretty.

With the start of the new month and a very large loss yesterday I've decided to move over to PokerStars for a bit. I want to get some cheap MTT action and that is the place to find it. The $20 and $30 MTT's at Party are great but since I'm not a great MTT player and just want to learn and practice I want to do it cheap. I've withdrawn $200 from Party and put that into my PokerStars account. I'll be playing around there for a bit and hopefully in a couple of weeks when Party explodes with a new group of fish from watching the WSOP 2004 I'll move back.

The other day I went to Brantford to play in the tournament, $80 buy-in. What a fish-fest, but you can't beat fish when you don't get any cards, right? I made a couple moves when I had absolutely nothing just to take some pots and keep me alive. I made it to the final table and tripled up when I went all-in on the button with A7o, was called by both blinds and they had junk. I still never saw any cards though, through the entire tournament the only good hand I saw was QQ, followed by 99 and 77. No rockets, no kowboys, and no big slicks, what luck. I ended up going all-in in the small blind with A5o when it was folded around. The BB was a horrible player, bluffed all the time, called with anything and should've been eliminated a long time ago. He was all-in twice for all his chips and both times he rivered his opponent to stay in the game. He called my all-in with K2o and outdrew me just like he did to all the other players. I busted out in 6th out of 20. The cards were sure going his way that night as he eliminated a lot of the field and made it to the final two.

When I got eliminated I bought in at the 1-2 NL game for $80. This table was very loose and the players were just horrible. They were raising to $10 or $20 with QJo, 5x and 10x the BB with QJo, are you high? I picked up 99 in LP and a player 2 to my left raised to $10, 3 callers including myself. I thought I'd take a stab and see if I hit my 9, if I don't and they go out betting I'm out of there. The flop came 893, two hearts. Inside I'm just laughing and overjoyed on how much money I'm going to rake in. I was first to act and bet out $25, I wanted to just take the pot right there since there were two hearts on the board. The initial raiser, as did another opponent but one of the biggest fish there obviously called. He had a ton of chips in front of him that he won from other with stupid hands. In one hand he was betting $20 and $40 into a pot with A2o when there was an A on the board, lucky for him his opponent was calling with 2nd pair. Anyways, he called my bet and the turn came a Q of clubs. I went all-in for the rest of my stack which was almost $40. He called and said "I guess he wants to lose his money". He flips over A8 of hearts, I show him my set of 9's but it doesn't matter when the river comes another heart to give him the flush. He laughs and takes all my chips. I had him beat the entire way but of course he chased and hit, what a great play by him. Blew $160 that night, which is a lot for a poor guy like myself.

Things never go my way.

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