Friday, 21 December 2007

Frustrated with Full Ring - Card Dead

So far this month I've played full ring on Stars, Full Tilt, and Party and have made a whopping $38 over 14,000 hands. I've been pretty much card dead for most of it and missing most flops and draws. People are not folding to c-bets at all either, which would be awesome if I was catching hands!

According to PokerEV I'm making the correct play 61% of the time that hands go to showdown, which is quite high, but it's just not paying off and I'm getting hit pretty hard with the bad beats lately, ie. flop a flush or a straight and get the money in and villain rivers their full house or what have you a lot more than usual; flop a set that doesn't hold up after the money's in, etc. Apparently I'm down $40 overall due to all-in luck.

I'm also flopping sets only about 8% of the time that I hold a pocket pair so that doesn't help either as that is my main source of income. Hopefully this will swing itself around again.

But when negative variance is done with me it will move on to the next person, so I just have to get through it. I'll probably continue to study a bit more of my game from November since my graph looked a lot better than it does now, lol. I find that trying out other games and formats helps me see situations that I hadn't seen before at the FR NL tables.

I think I go through a couple weeks at a time where my hand reading skills are excellent followed by a couple weeks where it's way off and then some time where I'm pretty much not confident in my game at all and see monsters everywhere. So I need to snap out of that.

Thursday, 20 December 2007

Trying to play superLAG

I watched a couple other people's videos today where one of them were playing extremely LAGgy in 6 max. I normally play 6 max the way I'd play full ring with the first 3 hands folded. So in the video the guy says, "T8s UTG, I'll raise that... Q8o UTG+1, I'll raise that" and I'm thinking Wai... Wha...? It just blew me away. The preflop play and his incredibly wide range wasn't what was so mind blowing, it was the overall postflop play and the image he was creating even at extremely low stakes. He said you still have an image at the micros, it just takes really exagerated plays to adjust it.

So I tried this out today in 6 max at the 2NL tables on Stars - my experiment level - and finished exactly breakeven over 500 hands running at 40/30, something that is completely foreign to me. I actually played 1/2 of my hands on the button and cut off - weird. I think this is going to work with some practice. What is happening and what I hadn't really thought of before is that by making slightly -EV plays preflop and in small pots, you increase the value of your +EV plays by so much more in large pots, especially against the TAGs and the HUDbots who will either misinterpret your stats or get tired of you raising and playing so many hands. I think this most resembles Daniel Negreanu's style of play, lots of pots and lots of small ball play. When they come back at you you know they have a hand for the most part unless they've figured you out (at which point you can switch gears) and they commit a lot of chips to find out if you have a nut hand or not.

I would have finished up quite a bit in terms of BB if it weren't for this hand and a couple others. It's a bad beat obviously, but it demonstrates just how light you can expect to be called down and this is the situation I want to put myself in every time. This guy had been calling me down with 2nd pair a lot and since he bet 1/5 of his stack, I figured a min raise would pot commit him with anything he's opening with, with a smaller chance of pushing him out. He'd be c/r with a set here I think, so I put him on a draw or 2 overs or a bare 7. Notice how he overplays a hand that beats nothing but a bluff - which he obviously thought I was. Great hand history converter by the way:

Poker Stars, $0.01/$0.02 NL Hold'em Cash Game, 6 Players - Hand History Converter

MP: $1.32
CO: $1.09
Hero (BTN): $5.78
SB: $1.19
BB: $1.89
UTG: $2.47

Pre-Flop: K 7 dealt to Hero (BTN)
UTG folds, MP calls $0.02, CO folds, Hero raises to $0.08, SB folds, BB calls $0.06, MP calls $0.06

Flop: ($0.25) 2 7 3 (3 Players)
BB checks, MP bets $0.50, Hero raises to $1, BB folds, MP calls $0.50

Turn: ($2.25) Q (2 Players)
MP checks, Hero bets $0.25, MP calls $0.24 and is All-In

River: ($2.73) 6 (2 Players - 1 is All-In)

Results: $2.73 Pot ($0.10 Rake)
MP showed 6 7 (two pair, Sevens and Sixes) and WON $2.63 (+$1.31 NET)
Hero mucked K 7 and LOST (-$1.32 NET)

Monday, 17 December 2007

Changing Gears for December - SnGs

I haven't posted in a little while. It's been a busy week again so not much poker going on. I think I burned myself out a little bit in the cash games last month and I haven't really felt motivated to play them for the past 2 weeks, considering my breakeven stretch and all.

I thought I'd recharge a bit by switching it up. I'm currently playing a lot more SnGs than I normally do and the odd MTT with mixed results. I really like the way my opponents play the SnGs on Full Tilt and I've pulled in a ROI of 75% in the 15 or so SnGs that I've played there so far. 1st place: 5x 2nd place: 4x 3rd place: 2x ITM: 62%

Example of why I like playing here, this is from the second level of a 1 table SnG:

Hero is dealt KK

UTG limps, UTG+1 limps, MP2 limps, Hero raises to 6BB, UTG calls, UTG+1 calls

Flop: 3s 4d 5d <--- not a particularly nice flop for me, but wait...

UTG open shoves a 6x pot sized bet all-in, UTG+1 folds, Hero thinks a set/76/A2 would slowplay or value bet smaller so this is obviously 66-AA and Hero thinks he's way ahead most of the time so Hero calls

UTG shows 66, not a particularly bad play on his part with the OESD but a smaller bet or a check raise scares me a lot more than this.

Turn: blank
River: blank

Stars is just the opposite and seems to be so nitty in the SnGs and I'm running a -20% ROI there so I think I'll stick to Full Tilt for a while and see what kind of stakes I can take down. I've played a bunch of 45 man tourneys as well on Stars, but unfortunately I'm finishing around 10th most of the time. I think my tourney game is starting to improve though, so I think I'll continue to play these.

I've been keeping track of my preflop all-in hands in tourneys to see what kind of equity I have when we're getting closer to the endgame. One thing I noticed is that I have slightly more equity with the hands that I am calling an all-in with than the hands that I am open shoving. This becomes quite clear when I look at my and my opponent's range for each situation and it pretty much demonstrates the gap concept.

I'm also spending more time on studying my game and reading some books to help me improve both cash and SnG games and I hope to be back at the ring games around Christmas. And also, I just became an uncle last week, which is awesome!

Wednesday, 5 December 2007

Not much going on this week

I haven't posted much this week as my time has basically been spent shovelling snow, lol. The snowfall amounts are crazy here right now due to it being so warm for November/December - ie 2 feet of snow on my driveway x2 this week. I'm going to try to get some time in probably tonight and the rest of the week. I've been trying out some SnGs with some pretty drastic changes to the way I play them, and this has been, for the most part successful. Even taking down a few turbos which I normally suck at because I was always such a nit.

Saturday, 1 December 2007

November Graphs and Stats

It's December now so I'll post my stats and graphs for November. Overall it was a pretty good month except for the last couple of days where I've been on a 9 buyin downswing. 46k hands played and running at 10.5BB/100 on average. My winrate sure has taken a hit at 10NL because the downswing was almost exclusively at that level. I played about 30 SnGs and MTTs as well but finsihed about breakeven for those.

I found this program kind of interesting, too. Not sure what to make of it but it's kind of inetersting to see what happens in these situations. Apparently I'm pretty good at flopping sets :)

I hope I can start turning this downswing around soon.