Friday, May 30, 2014

Satisfaction-May Review 2014

Well, I managed to end May on a solid note after all :)

The upward slop beginning around hand 70K wasn't exactly coincidental. Good things started happening when I chose to move away from Zoom and play the normal tables again, drawn to them by the 700K miletstone promotion that was happening on Stars. Zoom hands were not eligible for the promo so it made sense to spend my hours grinding at the tables that could possibly bring me a nice bonus at any instance. I didn't end up binking any milestones but I did seem to catch some rungood and started winning with more consistency. I think that the Zoom 6 max tables are higher variance than the regular tables but not by as much as my results might can actually see that my EV graph begins to spike well before hand 70K (when I was still playing Zoom) so I think most of my turnaround can just be attributed to variance. Also, I did play another session of zoom a couple of days ago when there weren't a lot of normal tables running and won almost 3 buy-ins so yeah, I think variance is by far the bigger factor in my upswing compared to the type of tables that I was playing.

Here's the breakdown by stakes ^^


$4,090 Table Winnings
$2,000 FPP Value
$1,000 100K Milestone bonus
$7,090 USD

Factor in some salary and a nice US exchange rate and the month turned out to be pretty satisfying. My volume let me down a bit again but I think that I did earn the most VPPs that I have in a single month in 2014, accumulating around 36,500. It's a start at least. I'm running out of time on the SNE chase though so I'm going to have to actually put up a respectable VPP count in June if I want to make this happen...I'm not even going to throw out a number to target since I've been so unsuccessful at hitting them but I am going to play as much as I think that I can.

Away from the tables, things also shaped up quite nicely at the end of the month. I've been back working out and eating better, which has allowed me to feel much better both physically and mentally. My ankle seems to be holding up alright and it was one of the least sore parts of my body after the first workout back in roughly 4 months...

I've been back on YouTube this month with my Hand of the Week series and I'm looking to continue that in June. What I wanted to do for June though, is analyze hands that are sent in by you guys. If you'd like to submit a cash game hand (any stakes) for me to review, please just send me the hand history text in a private message on my facebook page: LINK Don't worry about finding a super crazy hand or anything, the more standard ones are actually probably more helpful for people. I'll see how many submissions that I get but I'll probably plan on just picking the first 4 interesting ones that I receive and release 1 per week. If this is popular I can obv continue taking submissions in future months, or do some sort of mix of my own hands+hands from y'all.

Alright, I hope everyone has a good weekend. I'm wrapping up May 1 day early to take care of some chores tomorrow so that I can clear my plate by June 1. The weather's getting to be very nice again in Vancouver so I'm also going to be hosting a BBQ tomorrow night with some girlfriend also picked up the new Mario Kart today so I'm looking forward to that BBQ turning into a Mario Kart party later in the evening! I've only really played MK for the N64 but I'm assuming that my skills will be transferable to the Wii U and if that is indeed the case, everyone else better bring their A-game.

gl at the tables!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The SCOOP Aftermath

Well, the SCOOP was pretty much a disaster. This whole month has been pretty frustrating at the tables actually but I'll talk more about the cash games in a bit.

I ended up cashing in only 2/18 SCOOP M events that I played and unfortunately they were basically min-cashes :| Fortunately, the MTT losses aren't going to hurt my bottom line. My play seemed to be pretty much all of my bustouts were flips or bad beats. I probably could have done myself a few more favours by trying to pick better spots or be more patient but it's always easy to say that in hindsight. The fact remains that how successful my SCOOP was going to be was basically going to come down to how I did in the M $1050 Main Event. The tourney turned out to be pretty uneventful though, as I only played a couple of really meaningful hands. The first hand saw me open AA and Cbet an Axx hhh flop and get called...Turn brought another heart and it went check-call...River put a flush on board that didn't pair and I check-folded. Not too long after that I found myself all-in with AK vs. QQ and missed. I started to make some ground in the $109 wrap-up turbo but in an ending that only seemed fitting to the SCOOP I ended up busting about 1 orbit before the money bubble. I was proud of my bustout hand though...I ended up calling the CO's jam with A3s knowing they were likely light on about 10bb's each. Like obv A3 isn't doing great against anything but I don't think you can pass up those spots in a turbo if you're trying to go deep...anyways they had KJo and binked. There's always next time and I'm glad that I'm already looking forward to the WCOOP and am not discouraged by how SCOOP 2014 panned out.

I have to say that it's been a really interesting month at the cash game tables. As hard as I'm trying, I still don't feel like I'm in full grind-mode yet. That said, this will be my highest volume month of the year (if it hasn't already been) and hopefully a warm up for the remainder of 2014. I'm sitting on about 27K VPPs and should end the month with at least 50K. As for putting in hours...well I'm probably putting more hours than I ever have when you combine my play at the tables with off-hour studying. Things feel like they're coming together on the 6-max front but the run-good just isn't there right now. Obviously I'm not playing outstanding but I'm quite convinced that I am a winning 200nl Zoom player and I'm not sure how many Zoom regs can say that before rakeback. I mean, you get some quality players that dabble in 500nl and 200nl but then there are some other regs that just seem like there's no way they can possibly be making money. Anyways, here's the graph of the month so far:

So I mean, you can see my EV line shoot up towards the end there but the only line that really matters dropped downwards. Well, I guess I should say that normally the green line is my #1 concern but right now I'm actually more confident in seeing my EV line head uphill because that's telling me that my plays are winning long-term. I was looking through HEM to see if there was any interesting hands to point to the EV discrepancy but it looks like they're mostly standard pair-over-pair hands that got cracked.

So anyways, I'm only down 5 buy-ins I guess and it's all EV. It's pretty much nothing but anytime you have a long break-even/losing stretch it can mess with your confidence. I've got to keep my focus on improving and hopefully get some run-good to finish out the month strong. I'm actually going to be playing normal tables while the the $700K Milestone Promotion is currently underway. Zoom games are not eligible so you won't see me passing up the chance at landing another milestone-it's been a while.

My life feels like a bit of a mess right now. I think that breaking my ankle really affected me a lot more negatively than I expected it to in terms of messing with my lifestyle. Without being able to exercise or do anything active, my healthy eating habits have also reverted to more convenient cooking/eating and some occasional culinary binges. The result has been that I just haven't felt as mentally sharp or as good while playing too. The good news is that I'm going to be back at the gym this Thursday I think. It was supposed to be sooner but I had to take care of some other chores and seemed to reinjure the ankle a bit a few days ago. It feels good to go right now though so I'm looking forward to sorting everything out. I've got a lot to figure out...I've got to decide what games I want to play, I've got to get back to exercising and eating better and I've got to figure out how the F I'm going to get SNE in 7 months when my highest monthly VPP total will be 50K. I've got to figure it all out but I know that I can do it.

gl at the tables!

Friday, May 9, 2014

The latest SCOOP

Just wanted to drop a brief update on how the month has been going as I'm currently in the midst of my heaviest grind of the year (not saying much). The cliff notes would be "not particularly well" but just saying that wouldn't make for much of a blog post now would it?

The SCOOP has been less than spectacular for me so far, cashing in 2/9 Low events and 1/7 M and both cashes were for the min or close to it. I think that my play has been alright and most of my bustouts have been pretty standard or just bad beats (lost AA < QQ<JJ in the $82 AU yesterday). I'm still planning on playing about 10+ M events and at least that many L's so we'll see if I can make a deep run in something before the series is over.

The zoom tables have been pretty rough this month. I think that I'm playing fairly times I feel like I'm playing outstanding and at others I find myself playing a bit sloppy in spots and doing a bad job with the little things (ie bet sizing to set up future streets, stealing the BTN w/out looking at who's behind me etc.). Frankly though, I think that I've been running flat out bad overall and hopefully have some rungood coming around the corner. Just looking through my sessions yesterday, here are a couple of non-standardish hands that I lost:

This was fairly interesting. BB is a reg with a 20% 3bet from those positions (15 hand sample) so I think flatting pre is optimal most of the time. Flop seems standard as I wouldn't have much of a raising range in this spot. Turn gets interesting when it brings another club and the villain makes an unusually small donkish looking bet. I actually talked about this hand with fellow Team Online Pro xflixx and PSO coach GarethC23 and we all kind of agreed that my line is probably best and that the river was just unlucky. I knew it seemed fine but initially tried to make a case for raising the turn with my AK non-club combos, along with some stronger semi-bluffs (ie AcX) but quickly agreed that splitting our range there doesn't seem great. I think that AKo is still a strong enough hand to call with on a blank river and the strongest part of my range (ie nut flushes) wants to call turn to let the villain barrel off with bluffs. We talked about maybe having a raising range on the turn comprising of bluffs with our worst flop-calling hands (ie 89ss, JTss, QJss, 76s etc) and I was thinking that could be balanced with our sets/2-pair and maybe AA no-club.

PokerStars Zoom No-Limit Hold'em, $2.00 BB (6 handed)

Button ($250.72)
SB ($312.62)
BB ($240.03)
UTG ($354.66)
Hero (MP) ($206)
CO ($116.40)

Preflop: Hero is MP with A, K
1 fold, Hero raises to $5, 3 folds, BB raises to $18, Hero calls $13

Flop: ($37) K, 7, 5 (2 players)
BB bets $21.20, Hero calls $21.20

Turn: ($79.40) 3 (2 players)
BB bets $23, Hero calls $23

River: ($125.40) Q (2 players)
BB checks, Hero checks

Total pot: $125.40 | Rake: $2.80

Results below:
BB had Q, K (two pair, Kings and Queens).
Hero didn't show A, K (one pair, Kings).
Outcome: BB won $122.60

Here, I wasn't sure what to make of the BB because they were full-stacked but after seeing the CC of the 3bet and then another call of my 4Bet I assumed they were just a rec-player. I think that I played this hand well. I toyed with betting bigger on the flop to get in as much money as possible since villain is probably never folding but it's so dry that it's likely that betting smaller could even be better to induce some spazz. The only turn card I don't want to see is an A and even then the villains range is probably wide enough that I can never fold. I figured that checking-back to induce river spew is probably best but unfortunately it didn't work out here.

PokerStars Zoom No-Limit Hold'em, $2.00 BB (6 handed)

Hero (Button) ($208.55)
SB ($233.24)
BB ($217.44)
UTG ($200)
MP ($294.07)
CO ($200)

Preflop: Hero is Button with K, K
3 folds, Hero raises to $4, SB raises to $15, BB calls $13, Hero raises to $45, 1 fold, BB calls $30

Flop: ($105) 5, 3, 9 (2 players)
BB checks, Hero bets $54, BB calls $54

Turn: ($213) A (2 players)
BB checks, Hero checks

River: ($213) 9 (2 players)
BB bets $118.44 (All-In), Hero calls $109.55 (All-In)

Total pot: $432.10 | Rake: $2.80

Results below:
Hero had K, K (two pair, Kings and nines).
BB had 9, 7 (three of a kind, nines).
Outcome: BB won $429.30

Anyways, I'll spare y'all the straight up bad beat hands and the full house < quads but you get the idea. I'm still only down about 2 buy-ins so like I said, hopefully some rungood is around the corner and I can continue to improve. I think that if I lose 10 buy-ins then I'll try to mix things up and play some normal tables for a bit. More on that though if it comes to that. Like 10 buy-ins is nothing but it will likely depend on my frustration level when/if it happens lol.

Alright, back to the grind. I'm basically just working through this weekend and won't be doing anything too exciting. I also have the roof guys coming back on Monday and Tuesday to fix my ceiling where it had that small leak so I'm not particularly looking forward to working through that...not sure exactly whta I'm going to do. I'll be calling things a bit early on Sunday though to head home for Mother's Day :)

gl at the tables!