Monday, 4 July 2011

Taking a few steps back

It kind of seems like you have to be really fluid in your approach to this game and I'm going to be taking what feel like a few more steps backwards in my poker life.

I was a little late to the Full Tilt Poker license gongshow boat, not having read any other blogs or the zoo or listened to podcasts for the past couple of weeks until yesterday and I also only play on Stars. I'm sure you've all read about this ad nauseum so I'll just post some cliffs for those that have been under a rock somewhere like me. As far as I can tell from skimming forum threads it kind of looks like it went:

  • $1 in FTP$ != $1 in USD since there's not enough to go around after the DOJ seizure and the $60M shortfall in what is essentially player credit due to inability to process transactions coming in pre-BF.
  • Not paying back players sufficiently is a violation of their license.
  • License suspended / revoked by Alderney Gambling Control.
  • FTP is completely shut down worldwide in the middle of regular play with no warning. Can not connect at all.
  • FTP claims "maintenance" and to this day still say they are "updating" on their website.
  • Hearing date set for July 26th.
  • European investors to the rescue!
  • Ivey drops his lawsuit against Tiltware.

To their credit, the Isle of Man put out a statement saying that Stars has continued to show that they are in full compliance with their license. That said, I think I'm going to take a step back and play on a much smaller bankroll for the time being as I really can't afford to see that amount *poof* into nothing no matter how unlikely it is on Stars with a rather large property tax bill coming up. FTP has shown their incompetence over and over pre and post BF, while Stars has shown the complete opposite, but everything still feels chaotic with new sky is falling here and there messages every other week. Online poker has taken a beating and a number of steps back in the past few months. I don't want to be left holding a bag of monopoly money if another random bombshell drops despite having very high confidence in the integrity of Stars.

So for now I'm going to take a step back as well and withdraw most of my BR, drop down to 10NL, try to learn 6max in a more serious and focused way, and practice some more aggressive bankroll management than I have in the past. Hopefully I'll feel like I'm on more of a freeroll once I build it back up. I've become way too comfortable in the past just sticking it out at whatever level I feel best at and that has led to a lot of burnout and de-motivation to learn. Tentatively, I plan to start with $500 and move up at 30 buyins giving myself 10 buyin shots and whatever happens with my VIP level happens, although I would be shocked if I don't reach Supernova again by the end of the year.

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