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Daniel - Poker Journal

Poker Mode

21 Mar 2006

I'm feeling the urge big time. All I really want to do is play. Not hold'em, really, but mixed game poker. I just miss it so much having not played as much recently.

Hold'em is so boring compared to a game like 7 Card Stud H/L. Seriously, if all you ever play is hold'em, do yourself a favor and learn some other games.

There are so many other poker variables that don't even come up in hold'em that happen on a regular basis in split pot games. Split pot games require intense card reading skills, in some ways, even more so than a mechanical game like limit hold'em.

I play all the games, and couldn't even tell you which one was my favorite. They are all so fun! There is nothing like squeezing out a "two across" in triple draw when you are drawing to 2-3-6-7.

For those of you who have no clue what I'm talking about, when you "squeeze" your hole cards by just looking at the side of them you can narrow down the possibilities of what the card might me.

Nothing across (A-2-3)
Two across (4-5)
Three across (6-7-8)
Four across (9-10)
Paint (J-Q-K)

A lot of players use squeezing to randomize their bluffs. For example, let's say you were playing 2-7 triple draw and drawing to 2-3-4-5. On the river, you look at the side of your card and see that there are three visible pip, or “three across“.

Now, that means you either made a wheel (7), a perfect 8, or if it's the dreaded 6 you are totally dead with a straight. In this case, you are a 2-1 favorite to make your hand.

If your opponent checks to you, it's not a horrible idea to sometimes bet without looking to see what you made. If you hit the 7 or 8 you'd bet anyway, and if it's the 6 the only way you could win is by bluffing.

You just don't get to squeeze in hold'em like you can in other games.

Other times, you won't even have to look at the whole card to know what it is. For example, if you are drawing to 2-3-4s-7 and catch a two across spade, you know it can't be the 4 of spades since you already have it. Then, you'd know it's the 5 of spades for sure. Just mental masturbation really, but it help makes the game more fun.

Along that topic, I really haven't spent too much time talking about the upcoming WSOP and the new $50,000 H.O.R.S.E. tournament that has been added to the schedule. Awesome!

The $10,000 buy in event will always be considered the "World Championship," but who really cares? This $50,000 H.O.R.S.E. event will be a smaller field for sure, but it will become the single most prestigious poker tournament in the world amongst poker players.

You won't see a table full of amateurs. Why? It's simply not possible! At that final table, it's an absolute guarantee that it will be chalk full of top professional players. You might see "one" fluke, but it won't happen with near the regularity of the no limit hold'em events.

If you look at the names of the players that won mixed game events over the last few years at the W.S.O.P. you'll notice one thing: you recognize EVERY name: John Hennigan, Doyle Brunson, Phil Ivey, Scott Fischman, myself, David Pham... see a pattern there?

Anyway, enough about that event. I woke up late since I didn't go to bed till about 9:00am. What was I doing? You guessed it, watching Boston Rob absolutely pwn the Survivor All-Stars. Wow, not only was he dominant in the challenges, but how he was able to convince Lex to let Amber live I'll never know!

Boston Rob and Amber were totally doomed. There is no way that they should have kept Amber, it made no sense at all at the time.

I'm planning on watching the rest of them tonight. When I stopped watching there were seven left and Rob and Amber looked strong despite rumblings of other alliances being formed.

So as I said, I went to bed late but was able to get down to the poker room by about 5:30pm. I sat down in a short handed game that eventually filled up.

My plan was to pull an all nighter. I felt up to it, and was focused and ready to plow through a 16-24 hour session. Once again, though, after a short while we were left with me, Jennifer, and David. Everyone else quit and I was out of action by 9:30pm.

I went to look and see if there was a $400-$800 game to play in, or possibly even a no limit game of significance. No such luck, which is probably a good thing. As much as I'd like to think that I can go from playing $3000-$6000 to $400-$800 and play well, I know that it's tough for me to give it my all.

If you are curious about some of the hands I played in my session tonight, I was sending my assistant Patty text messages throughout the session which you can find right here.

As much as I'd like to play again tomorrow, my mother is making dinner which means I won't be able to get down there till after 9:00pm. Normally that's not a problem, but the games have been breaking up early recently so who knows.

I'd really like to build some momentum and try to put in some hours before having to go back on the road again. Yesterday I played 8.5 hours and won a "peanut," $25,000, while tonight my session ended after four hours with me ahead $121,000. Unfortunately, all that does is cover my recent losses playing online, doh!