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Daniel - Poker Journal

I'm OK

22 Jan 2006

I been flyin'. I been flyin' a lot. I am not alone, however, as it seems a lot of top players are doing the worldwide tour in January. Barry Greenstein, Phil Ivey, and David Williams just to name a few are hitting all five big ones this month and we found ourselves on the same flight from Australia, to LA, to Memphis.

When we got to LA we picked up more stragglers including Freddie Bonyadi, Joe Cassidy, Gavin Smith, and a few others I can't remember right now because my brain is fried after playing online poker all day (I'll get to that later).

Me and Ivey got to hang out a little bit in Australia and catch up a little bit. We used to hang a lot more "back in the day" when Juanda, Ivey, Cunningham, and myself were traveling the tournament circuit and learning from each other. Actually, it was more like Juanda telling us what we did was always wrong, but that's another story entirely.

With Ivey playing so much poker at Bellagio, and me getting married, launching FCP, and several other things, we haven't "chilled" as much as we once did.

I was surprised to see Phil playing all of the tournaments, but apparently he is inspired. When he plays three tournaments and doesn't make it to the final table, he's not a happy camper! He is pretty intense and confident that if he plays his best he can will his way to victory. Sometimes you can, but other times the cards laugh at you, spit in your face, and make you look silly!

That's what they've been doing to me on the regular. By the Tunica tournament, my frustration was evident. I was just getting sick of losing every pot I play and starting whining a little bit. Not out loud, but inside I'm like, "Are you serious? Don't give me AA, don't give me KK, and don't flop me 21 outs!"

The Tunica tournament went much like the Australia tournament, and the Bahamas tournament before that. Me starting out just trying to get back to even. Me starting out hitting some monster flops followed by the 4 of spades, then the 2 of clubs.

In Tunica, I had 5 hands early that all looked like this:

In BB with 5s 8s, five way action. Flop 8c4s 2s. I bet 600, button calls. Turn 3. I bet 1200, button CALLS. River 10h, I check, button bets, I show my hand and fold. He shows the nuts, 5-6.

I raise LP with Ah 4h, David Pham calls in BB. Flop 10h 7d 5h. David bets 500, I call. Turn 4, David bets 1100, I call. river blank... David had 6-8.

I raise with 5d 8h three callers. Flop 9d 7d 4h. I bet small, then call small raise heads up. Turn 5, check-check. River Ks.

I missed five flushes in the first limit and had QQ and KK cracked. Finally, I got it all in against Gavin when we both flopped a pair of aces with useless kickers. He had a flush draw, though, and hit it on the river. See ya.

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I was aggravated, pissed off, and headed straight to my room, packed my bags, and drove straight out of Dodge. While on my way to the airport, Ivey called me to get some flight information. I met him at the airport and we flew back through Denver to Las Vegas.

We talked about a wide variety of things, none of which I'll be sharing with you. Phil is a pretty private guy, and I'm always respectful of that in my blog. Not everyone is comfortable with their lives being an open book.

Anyway, hanging with Ivey left me motivated to just get back on the earn. I am really busy with lots of things, but I do "goof off" a lot watching tons of TV and other stuff. I could use that time to earn online at www.fullcontactpoker.com.

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So with that, I've been piling up the hours playing online at FCP. Anything from $500-$1000 limit hold'em to $50-$100 NL, to a $30 buy in sit n' go with some FCPers.

I started playing this morning at 11:00am and played for about 10 hours off and on. I finally took a little break to watch Roddick get stunned in the Australian Open. The dude he played was out of his mind! He played ridiculously good.

I'm also looking forward to seeing how Martina Hingis ends up. I was at her first round match where she played flawlessly, and it appears she is continuing to play out of her mind. Not only has she not lost a set in three matches, she hasn't lost 3 games in a set!

I was trying to bet somebody even money that Hingis would go farther than Serena Williams. She looked terrible in her first match, while Hingis appears focused on making a big comeback in her career. Unfortunately, I didn't get any takers.

Watching Serena play tennis was an epiphany for me. Physically, there is no way she should ever lose a match. She is way, way, stronger than any of her opponents. She loses, because her technique is weak and her fundamentals are sloppy. You watch her play and it just doesn't look like she wants to be there. It looks as though she has fashion shows on the brain. She just doesn't seem to have a lot of heart or desire to be the best... Ivey does!

So do I, but one thing I've gotten away from is practicing. Not like a tennis player would practice his serve, but I need to just play more to stay in a groove.

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The online play went "ok" as I'm up approximately $7000. I feel like I continued to run horrendously bad, but was able to fight my way through it.

Tomorrow, I will watch the football games, get some errands done, etc., but I'll also make time to grind it out online at FCP. You can find me in either the $500-$1000 heads up limit hold'em, the $250-$500 heads up limit hold'em, or the $50-$100 NL games.

On the 23rd, me and Phil will probably head back to Tunica for the Grand tournament and then head over to Atlantic City from there.

I know that I've been running terrible, but I'm going to blast my way through it the way that I've always done. Nose to the grindstone, play, play, play.

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FCP NEWS: If you haven't checked it out recently, the site recently went through a software upgrade and there are now some really cool avatars that I'm really proud of. There is one of me, and various other sports theme avatars to choose from including the volleyball chick, hockey dude, baller, and others.

***Josh Arieh is still in the main event at the GoldStrike and he will have updates at his site www.josharieh.com***

***Cardplayer.com is running a poll where you pick your favorite poker player, as well as pick the celebrity poker player you think is the best. Check it out on the homepage and cast your vote.***

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