The entire concept of a “bull market in stocks” makes little sense. Sound crazy? These days, certainly, because we’re always hearing about a perpetual bull market in stocks. Valuations increasingly disconnected from economic reality, asset bubbles in one class or another, armies of speculators moving like zombie hoards descending on the next fad and blowing it up to infinity and beyond, Buzz Lightyear-like.Why is the whole concept of a bull market generally, nonsense? Because if the value of everything is going up simultaneously, then nothing is going up. If everyone is a superhero, nobody is. If, in an imaginary economy, absolutely everything costs, say, $5, (labor, land, capital whatever) and then the next day everything costs $10, then what’s changed? The answer is absolutely nothing.The only thing that matters is relative valuations between asset classes. Let’s divide them into three of the most basic ones. Equities (stocks), bonds (debt), and commodities (consumer goods). If all three are going up in tandem, then there is no “bull market” in anything. If commodities are going up faster than stocks and bonds, you have inflation, or even hyperinflation. Ask anyone in Venezuela whether they care that their stock market is doing great, nominally. They don’t. They’re looking for their next glop of gruel or morsel of moldy bread to survive the day.But if stocks and bonds are rising and consumer goods are static to falling, you have a bull market in financial assets. This is where we are now. And boy are we really hard and deep into it now. Below is the ratio of the S&P 500 to the CRB Commodities Index.And I’ve got news for everyone. This bull market in stocks relative to consumer goods in dollar terms is already over. It ended almost a year ago. On April 20, 2020 to be exact. Red circle blowoff top above. That was when oil crashed to negative $35 a barrel and we all lived in an alternative financial freakhouse universe. But I have more news than that. This entire “bull market” in stocks has been one gigantic illusion from the very beginning. Stocks aren’t going up. They haven’t gone up for 21 years. Money is going down. Here is the graph of stocks relative to the prime monetary commodity, gold, over the same timeframe above.We can see here that from 1990 to 2000, we had a real bull market in stocks. Equities rocketed in gold terms and in terms of consumer goods generally. Everyone felt richer. Portfolios up, expenses down. But since that time, money has been dying at an accelerated pace and the standard of living has fallen.The bull market in stocks over the last 21 years has been an illusion, a tiny echo of the bull that ended at the turn of the century. We have spent the last 21 years trying to reinflate it, but gold has exposed the lie. We are now at the point where the illusion is about to collapse completely. In my view, we have only a few months left until it all hits the fan. Until then, the bubbles will keep coming in staccato frenetic fashion, moving from one asset class to another faster and faster, until we all get so dizzy we can’t follow it anymore. Last week I speculated that maybe the next target for the zombie hoard will be in penny gaming stocks. I was close. It’s in Macau stocks. It may already have started two weeks ago. The frenzy has started over news about China opening up again. I mean, just look at this crazy chart of the Macau proxy ETF:That last surge higher is just since February 1. We could be at the beginning of a crazy but brief ride higher in Macau stocks right now. New all time highs again, and Macau isn’t even fully open yet. The latest full month statistics for December show a 78.6% drop in visitors year over year. And yet we’re at new all time highs in these stocks already. It’s just completely crazy. I can understand the Macau opening up again trade, but to argue that this factor is being priced in at these levels, at new all time highs? As if none of this full year shutdown hurt any of the casinos fundamentally at all? That’s just totally bonkers crazy. It’s a reflection of the value of the currency these stocks are priced in, not the stocks themselves.What’s happening is that the zombie hoard of bubble chasers is reading the headlines regarding China starting to open up again, and they’re slamming buy orders and call options like they’ve been doing with tech stocks and Gamestop and BTC and all the other fads. We just got news out of Bloomberg that China’s Imax had a face-ripping rally due to exploding ticket sales. China is, indeed opening up, and the zombie hoard of speculators is now going to spray their money hoses at anything Chinese. Macau might be at the center of it.How high can this Macau bubble go, if that’s what we just saw start two weeks ago? The truth is, it doesn’t matter. If you get into it, you’ll get hooked and keep levering yourself up, counting your paper gains, unable to separate from them until you get caught in a vortex. At some point, my view this year, it’s all going to come crashing down when all the damage from 2020 is finally revealed all over the world. You can’t paper it over forever. The damage to Macau casinos doesn’t just go away. It festers in the form of more and more debt, and a damaged consumer base that can no longer patronize casinos in the way it once could. Festering wounds need the paper bandage removed and they need to be operated on. That is painful. And it’s coming.When we think of the word “bubble”, what are we really talking about? A bubble is something that looks, from the outside, to be really big and stable. The shape of it, a sphere, is the most stable shape in the universe. It’s why planets, stars, moons, and possibly even the spacetime continuum itself, spontaneously shape themselves into spheres. The force of gravity equalizes at every point on the sphere, forming equilibrium. Nature always seeks equilibrium. And so bubbles take on the illusion of stability, but unlike a real sphere, there’s nothing inside them. When they pop, they are gone almost instantly. This one is about to pop. Macau appears to be the next victim sucked up by the bubble. Macau will survive and rebuild. The question is, in what form? I wouldn’t take a bet the depended on me getting the answer to that question right.
Every summer, poker players from all over the world flock to Las Vegas for the World Series of Poker. Luckily for the professional players, most of these visitors have little to no chance to actually come away with a big score because they set themselves up to fail from the start. To last the seven weeks at the WSOP you must remain focused and ready to play your “A” game the entire time.
Here are a few tips that will greatly increase your expectation at any tournament series without even mentioning how to technically play poker. It should be noted these are tips for players who want to have the highest expectation possible during a long series and only care about poker. If you’re going to Vegas to party and to play a few tournaments on the side, these tips probably aren’t for you. Then again, neither is the life of a poker tournament professional.
Get a lot of sleep
To be ready to play your best at noon every day, you simply have to get a lot of sleep. I make a point to get home as soon as the tournament is over each day or around midnight, whichever comes last. For example, if I play a $1,500 tournament and bust in the first hour, I will play satellites or cash games until midnight and then go home. If I play the same $1,500 tournament and survive the entire day, I will go home when play ends, usually around 1 a.m. When I get home, I go straight to sleep. I don’t sit around and have dinner and watch a movie. I get sleep so I’m ready to go the next day.
Play side games
In the past, I never really played the side games during the WSOP. I now realize just how much money I was missing out on. I’ve played mostly $500 and $1,000 single-table satellites in my spare time and have been happy with my results. I also hear the cash games are excellent. I used to simply go home whenever I lost a tournament, which would often waste an entire day. Now, I’m earning around $200 per hour.
Assuming you play four hours of side games per day, you will find that you profit $40,000 by the end of the series. That’s a nice way to supplement the daily tournaments. It can turn a losing series into a break-even one and a break-even series into a decent winner. Obviously this will take time away from goofing off or enjoying the outdoor world, but seeing how the profitability of poker has been shot in the foot because of the problems with online poker, you simply have to make the most of every tournament series.
A few years ago, I lost around 40 pounds simply through eating right and exercising regularly. Throughout the WSOP, I make a point to eat a few eggs, some veggies and some lean meat as soon as I roll out of bed every morning. During the WSOP, there are a few food delivery services that will bring healthy food to the poker table. I have my healthy breakfast plus two meals delivered to my table each day. This allows me to not take dinner breaks, which will make me slightly more profitable, and it allows me to stay in decent shape, especially since I have to cut out a little bit of my routine workout time.
That being said, I still try to get in the gym at least three times per week, even during the hectic WSOP. Also, for those looking to quickly lose fat and keep it off, simply stop eating sugar, fatty foods and starches. This means no smoothies, potatoes, rice, yogurt, fatty meats and bread. If you cut these foods out of your diet, the weight will drop off quickly. Realize though, this isn’t a diet, it’s a way of life.
Avoid your vices
My past vices have been drinking and degenerate gambling. I never had a legitimate problem with either, but I realized they cut into the profitability of poker. If you have a few drinks at night you’ll find you won’t sleep as well and will wake up with a mild hangover, which will make you play worse during the day.
If you gamble on random things, such as blackjack or sports, you will find when you lose, you’re on tilt from losing and when you win, you would rather be doing those things than playing poker, both of which are terrible for your concentration. My advice is to cut these activities out of your life, and not just for duration the tournament series. If you do, you will find yourself a much happier person in the long run.
If you are going to the WSOP, I strongly suggest you spend some time preparing. If you simply show up and expect to succeed, you are almost certain to fail. I recorded a six-hour long training series for you that explains all of the preparations I make in order to ensure I have the best chance to do well. I also discuss how to play with the wildly varying stacks you will be forced to play with at the WSOP. Check it out here: Jonathan Little’s WSOP Coaching Series
If you enjoyed this blog post, please share it with your friends. Good luck in your games!
I can’t believe how fast the time has gone by! Last year was my first World Series of Poker and it seems like just yesterday!Now, My second World series of Poker is halfway through and another year is almost already in the books! Time sure does fly! Going through these blog posts and thinking about my time last year, the good and the bad, sure was an exciting ride! I didn’t have anywhere near the schedule I attempted last year, but that didn’t mean I was going to miss out on the action! Things were just as exciting this year, but from a different perspective for me at least! Intertops had a great idea to send out two online qualifiers out for their chance at glory! After all who doesn’t want a WSOP bracelet and a million dollars!! The two qualifiers won their seats to the Milli Maker through a $100 buy-in satellite on Intertops online poker site. A pretty good deal considering its a $3500 package and the fields were only about 20 players deep! The deal was to set everyone up at the Rio for a 6 nights stay, so we could make the process run smoother and give the players the full experience of the amazingly fun CHAOS that is the WSOP! lol It also included the $1500 buy-in to the Milli Maker and $500 travel expenses. We also may have had a few nights of cocktails and food thrown on the Intertops tab as well.,,,maybe ???? but I’m not admitting anything! lolI met up with the two qualifiers, Barney from West Virginia and Balazs from Hungary for a drink a day before the tournament. They were both excited for Vegas, but it wasn’t their first time out here. Barney had been several times and Balazs once before. It was,however, their first WSOP tournament! Barney thought he had a rough flight, coming all the way from the other side of the country, until Balazs told us it had taken him over 18 hours just to get to LAX and then took a bus ride the rest of the way to Vegas!! While the scenery was probably pretty cool to see, we still had to give him credit for tackling the long journey! It was cool to hear their stories and as usual I told them plenty of my own. lol I kinda have a tendency to ramble on after a “Jack and Coke” lol We had some laughs and talked some strategy and I was happy to get to know them both! I was glad to learn they both weren’t really interested in the craziness of Vegas, they were focused on the Milli Maker and couldn’t wait to get to the tables! So we made our way to the cage for their tickets and their shot at the guaranteed one MILLION dollar first place prize!The World Series of Poker never learns their lesson apparently and again have most of the big tourneys starting at 10 am! So we had an early start the next day! Luckily the guys both came in a day early to help with the jet lag and try to get use to it before the big day. I doubt either player was real concerned about the lack of sleep and more concerned about the nerves of excitement as they sat down to play.The room was packed full of players and you could literally feel the excitement in the air! While it is chaotic many times at the WSOP, there really isn’t another poker experience like it. It’s truly amazing and if you haven’t ever at least gone to witness it, you really need to. I was pumped to sweat the action of these two guys ! They both handled themselves well midst all the madness and after few orbits, they had settled in nicely. We all had a quick chat on break about just enjoying the experience they both seemed to start not only getting comfortable but crushing their tables! Balazs had started to chip up quite a bit, but Barney was the one on a HEATER! He had a massive pot shipped his way, in i believe level 3, that turned out to be the boost he needed to catapult him to a deep run! I know he’s going to explain it better in an upcoming interview with Rikard from PokerTube, but from what he told me, it went something like this…He had Ace Jack of Spades in the big blind and a super loose aggressive player (coincidentally from my home casino lol) opened from mid position and got a one caller. Barney decided to just flat and see a flop. The flop came 9 high with two spades, a pretty awesome spot for Barney, but he decided to check and let the loose aggressive raiser hang himself, but to his surprise he checked and the caller, who was pretty short stacked, moved all in! Barney had the nut flush draw and two overs, so he called, only to have the original pre-flop loose aggro player check-shove ALL IN! Barney went into the tank, the loose guy had him covered , so this was for his tournament life!! He told me later he thought back to our talk about just enjoying himself and said “screw it”, making the call and taking the gamble! I can’t say I blame him for calling off, knowing the player that made the shove to be very wild and spazzy. He turns over his AJ spades to hear the “good call” from the loose player while he shows K10 of spades for the second nut flush draw and two overs. Well the spades missed the turn and river, but a Jack hit and was enough to seal the deal and ship HEAPS to our man, pushing him to over 3 x average stack in level 3!!! Woohooo!I’ll leave you hanging on that high note and in suspense! lol I’ll finish up with part two this weekend and hopefully figure out how to add some cool videos on here by then! We had some great moments and really wanna share those highlights! Be sure to check back for them soon and check out all the current events for Intertops here! Or if you want to ask me directly, come stop into our new YouTube channel and see my new Live Stream on there! Say hello, give us a like and see what we have planned for some cool upcoming projects!Run Good!Tim
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In what is thought to be the first sign that Caesars is planning for a live World Series of Poker festival in 2021, the operator has put on a new free-to-enter sweepstakes promotion, the Ultimate Poker Champion Experience.
Running from February 15 through April 30, 2021, the contest offers anyone in the United States a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be a part of the WSOP Main Event. One lucky person will not only get their entry into the Main Event paid in full, but they will also be treated to an elite experience during their stay. To enter, all you have to do is fill out the form.
With the coronavirus pandemic still causing mass disruption to live events and travel in the United States and around the world, the WSOP has yet to announce any schedule or plan for this year’s series. There is no information around the main event, for which the promotion is centered around.
The Normal Ramp Up to the WSOP
The WSOP is poker’s biggest event of the year. Tens of thousands of players descend on the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas for more than six weeks of poker. Action culminates in the $10,000 Main Event, the most prestigious tournament in the game. The winner is crowned the year’s champion, poker’s highest accolade.
However, last year, due to the coronavirus, the regular World Series of Poker 2020 was canceled for the first time in its 51-year history.
In its place was an online series held half in the United States—on the official WSOP Nevada and WSOP NJ online poker rooms—and half outside the US on global online poker room GGPoker.
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In the winter, WSOP and GGPoker joined forces again for a hybrid online-live Main Event where players competed in tournaments online, then met for a live final table. The two winners of these met in a special heads-up match in Las Vegas.
Normally by now, organization and marketing are in full flow. Online satellites are underway on official WSOP sites as well as partners internationally. Schedules are revealed, packages are offered and promotions are spread.
However, nothing has yet been revealed for this year—understandable, given how no one knows how the next few months will unfold. That makes this promotion even more intriguing.
Sweepstakes Package Details
The winner of the sweepstakes promotion will win entry into the $10,000 buy-in 2021 WSOP Main Event.
As noted, normally this is a multi-day tournament held live in the Rio; last year, it was mostly online. What it will be this year is unknown. The implication, however, is that Caesars wants to run this live in Las Vegas, given the other parts of the prize package.
The winner and their guest will be flown to Las Vegas from anywhere in the continental United States. Once in the city, they will be treated to a dinner for two at a Celebrity Chef restaurant, a three night stay in a suite at Caesars Palace, a whisky and cigar night at the hotel’s Montecristo Cigar Bar, and $1,000 in spending money.
The total prize package, including all the extra goodies, is worth $14,000.
Approximate Value (USD)
$10,000 Seat to 2021 WSOP Main Event
3-night stay in a Suite at Caesars Palace
Round-trip airfare for two (from continental US)
$1,000 VISA Gift Card
Whisky and cigars at Montecristo Cigar Bar
Dinner for two at Celebrity Chef’s restaurant
Hotel Stay at the Rio, a Hint of the WSOP Finally Moving?
Curiously, the stay is only for a three nights—which would normally not be long enough for a deep run of the WSOP Main Event. Last year, the tournament was spread over two weeks, with three Day 1s and two Day 2s then a Day 3, Day 4, and final table, with breaks gaps in-between.
Also of note, the hotel stay is in Caesars Palace, not the Rio. Whether this suggests an anticipated location move or not remains to be seen. The Rio was sold back in 2019 though Caesars agreed to manage the property for two years.
The 2020 event was scheduled to take place in the Rio, and the live Main event did go ahead in its convention center. However, no announcement has been made for the 2021 series—and with Caesars potentially coming to the end of its management contract, this could well be the first indication that WSOP plans to move it to another Caesars location in Las Vegas.
How to Enter the WSOP Ultimate Poker Champion Sweepstakes Promo
If you are a United States resident, just fill out this form. That’s it! You can read below for more details.
The contest is open to anyone over 21 years of age, with the exception of employees and family of Caesars Interactive Entertainment, Inc or Caesars Entertainment Services, LLC. The offer is only valid in the continental United States and void where prohibited.
Entries are open until midnight on April 30, 2021 and the winner will be randomly chosen on May 6, 2021 from all the entries received prior to the closing date.
In the event that the winner does not meet eligibility requirements, up to 5 alternate draws will be made to choose a winner. If no eligible winner is selected after the maximum 5 alternate draws, the prize will remain unawarded.
Prizes are non-transferable, and not subject to change except at the discretion of the contest Administrator. The Administrator reserves the right to substitute a prize of equal or greater value if the above prizes are not available for any reason, and winners are responsible for all taxes and fees which may be associated with receiving or using the prize. There is no cash equivalent for this prize.
The dates for the prize will be set once the Main Event is scheduled, but the trip must be taken before December 31, 2021. This gives the organizers a wide window to schedule the WSOP 2021 Main Event—whatever form it takes.
Wow, it’s really easy to slack on updating this blog!Haha Usually it’s the writers block or fear of making myself look even dumber than I am, but at least this time it’s because too much exciting stuff has been happening to know where to start! (ok, maybe still a little bit slackin’ lol) Between live tourney events, Intertops St Maarten satelites, Youtube additions and training changes, it’s been a hectic few weeks! So I figured a few quick updates are in order to catch everyone up to speed before we get any further along!WPT ChoctawWell first off I have to congratulate my good buddy Kamran Munaf for his insane run in the WPT main at Choctaw! Kam crushed souls the entire event, being in the top five chip counts for nearly the entire tournament! He had some good swings but overall just consistently added to his massive stack every level. His epic run came to a brutal ending though, when he bubbled the unofficial final table, finishing 10th. There were a couple HUGE hands that really wiped him out when they were down to the last two tables and there wasn’t much he could do after that. While I’m sure he’s dissappointed in not winning it all, it was a GREAT run and I expect him to be back in that spot soon to redeem himself! Hopefully we can get him in on the blog and Youtube channel to go over some of that experience!Intertops Poker now on YouTubeSpeaking of YouTube, Intertops and I are going to be doing a lot more with our channel to promote and grow the site. I will be doing some videos of the current tournament series running right now at my local casino, Winstar. The Winstar River series is a good size yearly event that brings in a lot of players from all over Texas and Oklahoma. With a 2 million dollar guaranteed prize pool for the Main Event, it’s been know to also have it’s share of big name pros swing through as well! They also have poker pro Maria Ho being the events sponsored player for added media attention. They run satellites all month leading up to a handful of events right around Memorial day. Hopefully I can scoop up a few of the cheaper satellites and free-roll the whole series! I would happy just giving the Main Event a real shot, but either way I’m gonna try and get some good highlights to share!Still 2Skinny…As far as the Fitness challenge goes, overall I’m still happy with what I’ve done so far, but still have some stuff to improve on for sure. I’ve managed to get from 144lbs to about 155lbs in about 3 months, so I’m happy with that for sure, but Ideally I would like to get back to about 170lbs before I’m really satisfied. I’ve been on point with my training around my Sciatic nerve/Piriformis issue, enough so that I’ve actually gone right back into a “normal” training routine. While I’m still dealing some some pain and needing to modify certain exercises, it still feels really good to be able to get back into that zone with training. There’s just something about being on a planned out exercise routine that seems to center me, and carry over positively to all other aspects of my life. There’s been a few “hiccups”, especially with traveling for the WPT Choctaw, but I suppose that’s to be expected. The consistency is really the biggest thing, with nutrition on Tournament days in particular, but sometimes you just gotta make due with what you have and focus on Poker lol. (Plus fried chicken N waffles are an AMAzing comfort food after busting out late in a tournament! lol)Intertops St MaartenLast and not least of course is the Intertops St Maarten WSOP circuit satellites going on right now! Last Sunday we gave away the first seat and some lucky winner is on their way to play the WSOPc main event! If they can pull themselves away from the beach that is! We are giving away a few more seats, and the next round has already started! Win your way to this dream package from as little as 3 Bucks!! The next event is going to be Sunday the 27th, so be sure to hit the tables now to get ready! Intertops and TKPT run one of the most entertaining series down there and you don’t want to miss this one! I hope to see you there!Run Good!TimPS that Intertops player XXGlorynbaes in the feature Photo! He was my dealer a few times for WPT Choctaw! Small World! lol
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If you’ve never seen Dara O’Kearney and David Lappin hosting The Lock-In before, then you’ve already missed out on some of the best poker content that has been out there during your country’s version of lockdown. If that’s the case, then head here for a more general look at The Lock-In and enjoy the whole canon. If you’re already a confirmed fan, however (guilty as charged), then this week’s detailed look at the action between Doug Polk and Daniel Negreanu by the challenge’s winner – Polk if you’ve been living under a soundproofed rock at least a continent away from Las Vegas – is just for you. In it, Doug Polk answers a range of questions from the Irish poker legends as he goes deep in terms of analysing his win and talking the boys and viewers through how he did it. Crib notes – it was a lot of hard work. In this episode of the Lock-In, it would be easy for Lappin and O’Kearney to simply gloat at Negreanu, especially as the Canadian six-time WSOP bracelet winner was both ignorant and disparaging in equal measure to their award-winning podcast when The Chip Race (presented by the Irish duo) was given due credit by their peers at The Global Poker Awards of 2019. That they don’t is to their credit and the very reason why both The Chip Race and The Lock-In have become essential viewing over the last few years, with the questions both detailed and knowledgeable and the pace of the interview perfect for their subject, the eponymous Polk – to eulogise on exactly what went right and wrong. There’s not a sausage in sight and Polk is refreshingly honest and open about how he structured his attack on Negreanu and in breaking down the closing half of the challenge, we learn a lot about how even the best heads-up online players stay at the level they’re at – hours and hours (and more hours) of work. Polk’s success, of course, came to the tune of $1.2 million eventually, but that took a huge winning session in the last yards to mean a seven-figure win was confirmed and was done so with a modicum of humility by Polk. He was the player many saw as the aggressor early on, but opinions have rightly changed on that. Negreanu frequently believed that he played ‘perfect poker’, but Polk laughs at the very idea, admitting to making hundreds of errors as anyone would do in a massive heads-up challenge, even the best in the world. Polk is honest enough to admit that should the heads-up game have been live, then he may have been a marginal dog in the fight, but between the three men, they go into some great detail around exactly why this kind of game would not have been totally to Negreanu’s advantage had it gone ahead. Of course, had the pair arranged to play 25,000 live hands of heads-up poker, it’s likely we would be covering it by the time Donald Trump runs for U.S. President again in 2024. Don’t shake your head; it could happen. Polk is called ‘hyper aware of his weaknesses’ by David Lappin and in a complimentary fashion, which Polk responds to very well, taking the time to talk about ‘knowing what he doesn’t know’, and as he describes, he has always been perfectly prepared to look at solvers, analyse his play and be open enough to look at where he has been wrong. The more you watch of the episode, you more that you realise Polk’s strength in the challenge was actually to appreciate that every session is full of mistakes by both players and being ‘hyper-aware’ of that was the edge. If you haven’t seen the hour-long special, then it’s essential viewing and can be viewed right here: Doug Polk is pure gold throughout, but he’s helped more than adequately by two of the best presenters in poker. If only they weren’t so successful at the felt, we might be treated to O’Kearney and Lappin presenting the game on a more regular basis whenever live poker returns, because apart from high-beef content sausage proprietors, who wouldn’t watch them?
Lessons I’ve Learned at the World Championship
by Jennifer Shahade
The two-time US women’s chess champion, and PokerStars Mind Sports Ambassador Jennifer Shahade admits that her biggest highlight of this poker season was winning the TonyBet Open Face Chinese World Championship High Roller event. Not only was it the biggest live buy-in she ever played, it was also the biggest cash prize of her career.
Since the event was streamed live, the recorded video footage allowed Jennifer to analyze her own game and use it to teach others about OFC poker. In this piece Jennifer shares her thoughts on two hands she played during the tournament and looks at them in more detail.
At this point of the tournament I had Jason Mercier and Marek Kolk as my opponents. Jason is a really good player under pressure, he has a lot of experience. In Open Face Chinese I think he plays a bit more conservatively than average. Jason is also extremely dangerous under new formats and new situations, as he can adjust very quickly, being used to that from high stakes mixed games.
So considering many of the players were not as used to tournament format that could give Jason an edge. I didn’t know as much about Marek Kolk though from the few hands I played with him, he seemed more on the aggressive side and willing to take risks when it’s close, so he and Jason were presenting two very different aspects of the game here.
Just like in other forms of poker, sometimes a more conservative line and a more aggressive line can have similar equity, so in Open Face it’s about trying to figure out when your style is interfering with the correct mathematical choice. I’m not sure where I lie on the spectrum – I think I’m pretty good, of course. Though if I had to identify a leak in this respect, I’d say I am probably a bit too conservative/straightforward when my hand is bad.
When talking about this particular hand, I definitely would have played Queen on top, 2, 3 in the middle and 7, 4 in the back first to act, as Marek did. I can’t see another way to set my hand: 2, 4 in the middle and J, 5, 5 at the bottom seems totally standard, the jack is the perfect kicker for the back.
As for Jason’s hand, anyone who watches my Run It Once videos knows how partial I am to pairs over three-flushes. With all of the kings, tens and sixes live, I’d consider K, K, 6 in the back, ten in the middle and ace up top. Believe it or not we are over 50% to make a boat or quads in this spot, which sounds outrageous, but makes sense when you consider how it’s rather unusual that all of our kings and kickers are live.
It’s also very nice that our other kicker is so live too so we’ll make two pair in the middle quite comfortably. Of course his set is very well designed for fantasyland, though I think my way gets there quite often as well.
I think Marek’s hand was shaping up poorly compared to our hands. Presumably, he did not get a diamond, and Jason was very likely to complete his flush. Meanwhile, all my jacks and fives were live too, and there were still three aces live at the time, so he decided it was time to gamble.
I think I’d play it the same way though I don’t know his discard on the crucial pull where he decided to gamble for Fantasy Land.
I think the value of Fantasy Land is slightly less in three-handed play. As I discuss in my Run It Once videos, however, I think that in three-handed it’s also a little easier to get to it because we will have more information about which kickers will be live and which will be dead.
Whether or not to go for Fantasy late in the game is often a pure math problem! It became a bit more complex in the tournament format with short stacks though I normally believed that if I had a relatively short stack, it was even more profitable to gamble for Fantasy.
It’s also very relevant as to which position we’ll be in when we come out of Fantasy Land. It’s not that important to see our opponent’s first five cards when we set a Fantasy hand, it will only occasionally change our set. However, it’s quite important if we can find ourselves on the button after getting out of Fantasy, rather than “wasting” our button while we are in Fantasy.
A very important factor to consider before playing a live Open Face Chinese poker event is one’s physical and mental preparation. Because you have to play each and every hand, it is very different from Hold’em tournaments.
I had an event in London the day before the OFC High Roller, and I wasn’t confident that I’d be rested enough to play the 10K High Roller. I ended up changing my seat from an aisle to a window the night before, and slept the entire flight. If not for that, maybe I wouldn’t have ended up playing and taking home the biggest cash of my career and the belt!
I was so energized to be in beautiful Prague, and just before sundown, I texted my friend Warren Lush to see what he was up to and how the High Roller was going. He encouraged me to come out and play and I rushed to the tournament. All in all, a great example of the butterfly effect for me.
I also had a wonderful time at the tournament – I’d never played a so-called “High Roller” before, though I’d played 10Ks in Main Events, this was quite different. I noticed that ironically, the atmosphere was more informal and relaxed. I also thought the staff did an exceptional job, especially considering how late the tournament ran. And the food was amazing at Kings Casino, I’ll always remember the steak and champagne I had after winning. I’m missing Prague already!
“You have to have ZERO respect for a dollar when you play tournament poker!”This was the advice I received after busting a recent tourney. I was venting/reviewing with a friend, who is a much better player with A LOT more experience, and he was quick to hit me with this line. We were going over a particular series of hands from the 300k GTD at the Winstar river series in which I went from nursing a short stack for hours, to a sudden heater that propelled me up to almost chip leader at the table. It was a 4-5 hands blitz that had me feeling pretty amazing, but then on the 6th hand a found myself in a gross spot that could have( and probably should have) resulted in getting those new found chips all in! As I discussed the hand history, I mentioned to him that I felt the urge to “save” the chips I had just finally acquired after so patiently waiting all day! He immediately was no longer concerned with the hand history and went right into questioning my mindset and bankroll. “If you want to be a great poker player, you have to have ZERO respect for a dollar when you play poker…as bad as it sounds, it’s true and unfortunately, that’s why so many people become degenerates!” Yikes, straight to the point and brutally honest, but exactly I needed to hear! Suddenly, this seemingly basic hand history review had turned into an explosion of questions about the inner workings of my game! Why was I fearful to lose those chips? Had I been playing scared?“Different kind of playing scared!”The hand history itself was past around and I received several different viewpoints on it, but to this day, I’m still unsure what the correct play was lol So I think I’ll save that for another post, as the more important point was made, maybe THE most important point of my whole poker career!?Have I been letting the “money” effect my decisions?I think we’ve all heard that phrase about being numb to the money in poker. Win or lose, you can’t let the thought of what that money means to you in the real world influence your decisions at the table. All that should matter in the moment is making the correct play. If you bust, you bust. If it’s a tourney you just re-buy or play the next flight. In a cash game you simply reload at the table and move on the the next hand. It’s just standard practice for almost every player I know, myself included. Hell a few times I’ve witnessed friends fire over 10 bullets at a single tournament, with buy-ins ranging from $150 to $1650! I’ve also watched as they reach into their backpacks for another brick of hundreds after getting stacked for the 5th or 6th time. While I’m sure it seems absurd to most normal people,(and it should be) unfortunately for us poker players, that’s kinda just the way it goes sometimes. We chalked it up to variance, running bad, or being unlucky. We just call it a “standard” part of the game and move on. We aren’t being degens, the run bad is REAL, right?! lol“Nah, it’s definitely about the money…”Seriously who burns all that money!? lol Don’t listen to the Joker up there, its always about the money! Well of course, being the best poker player you can be should be the ultimate goal for any seriously player (Sending a message? lol). Hmmm, so I guess for poker players, this quote should say something like “Send them the message; It IS about the money! ” So by showing your skills as a player, you plan on beating them and taking their money!? lol;) All joking aside, at the end of the day, it’s about making money. It’s what makes the poker economy go round! If you play professionally, you need to be earning and saving money to support yourself and possibly your family. You can’t be blowing through 10 buy-ins every weekend, when that money could have been your mortgage payment! It may not be as serious for you if you’re a recreational player, but not making money still means you’re not WINNING and what’s the point of competing if you can’t WIN? So no matter Pro or Rec player, the question becomes; What separates a typical “poker player” and from being a true Gambler. Where do we draw the line? Are we being financially irresponsible or making sound poker decisions?!“Every beginning has an end…”After continuing to hear my friends advice repeat in my head every time I’ve sat down to play since that day lol I realized I had to take a l hard look in the mirror and ask myself; Am I a poker player or am I a DEGEN? I mean I like to think I’m still pretty tame compared to a lot of players out there. Never being THAT out of control, but I’ve clearly made my share of mistakes. I’ve re-bought when I knew I shouldn’t, I’ve played above my means, played in bad games, played too many games at once, etc. You name it, I’m sure I’ve done it at some point, but at least I’m finally here asking, why did I do it? Have I been making the correct plays every time and just getting unlucky or have I been blind to my errors and just convinced myself what i was doing was “standard” !? Why it has taken me this long to really stop and think about it!? To realize something needs to change?So many questions and only one answer comes to my mind…Bankroll Management. The problem and the solution are the same. For me, sound decision making in poker starts with sound Bank Roll Management. Also it’s the only real thing I can control to prove to myself that I’m a winning player. So in the next post I’ll discuss general bankroll management strategies, outline my plan, and officially kick off my Intertops Bankroll Challenge.Run GoodTimPS: use promo code TOK2017 with the link to help build you’re Roll!
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ขออภัยที่โพสต์ยาว / ระบายล่วงหน้า! สำหรับการอ้างอิงการเสพติดเป็นสิ่งที่ฉันไม่คุ้นเคย ดูเหมือนลักษณะครอบครัวที่ทุกคนติดยาเสพติดหรือแอลกอฮอล์เป็นส่วนใหญ่ แต่แม่เลือกที่จะเล่นการพนัน สิ่งที่แย่ที่สุดเกี่ยวกับเธอคือฉันอาจจะเข้าหาเธอตอนที่ฉันอายุ 10 ขวบเท่านั้น เราเล่นกับเกมบิงโกที่ “เป็นอันตราย” ในช่วงวันหยุดมีอยู่ช่วงหนึ่งตุ๊กตาหมีกำลังพูดเหมือนเงินเพื่อเล่นและชนะ มันเป็นช่วงเวลาที่ดีและชื่นชอบความทรงจำ แต่ฉันมีความเข้าใจเกี่ยวกับอินเทอร์เน็ตและเมื่อเรากลับถึงบ้านฉันได้แนะนำวิธีการเล่นออนไลน์ที่บ้านและจะมีเวลาระหว่างเรามันปลอดภัยที่จะบอกว่าเราชนะด้วยโชคดีครั้งใหม่ มันสนุกอยู่พักหนึ่ง แต่ตอนเป็นเด็กฉันเบื่ออย่างรวดเร็ว ฉันแทบไม่รู้เลยว่าฉันปลูกเมล็ดพันธุ์เพื่อการเสพติดของแม่ของฉันเอง ตอนนี้ฉันรู้แล้วว่าตอนนี้เขาตื่นเต้นแค่ไหนที่เขาน่าจะตื่นเต้น แม้วันนี้ฉันเกลียดตัวเองในสิ่งที่ทำ เธอเสียเงินมากมายเราเสียคริสตมาสมากมาย ไม่สามารถจ่ายบิลหรือซื้ออาหารได้ภายในสองสามสัปดาห์ เธอไม่เคยให้อภัยตัวเองสำหรับเรื่องทั้งหมดนี้ ฉันมักจะโทษตัวเองอย่างสมบูรณ์และสัญญาว่า ID จะไม่มีวันสิ้นสุด คืนนี้ฉันมีความสำนึกว่าฉันมีอยู่แล้ว การปิดกั้นและการ จำกัด โควิดทำให้ฉันเบื่อฉันเชื่อ เบื่อมากพอที่จะลืมว่าการพนันเป็นอันตรายแค่ไหนและในอดีตมันทำร้ายฉันมากแค่ไหน ฉันลงทะเบียนบนเว็บไซต์บิงโก 20 ปอนด์ไม่เป็นอันตรายมาก ฉันถูกรางวัลแจ็คพอต เหลือเชื่อในที่สุดฉันก็สามารถชำระหนี้เล็กน้อยที่เหนือการปิดกั้นและไม่สามารถหยุดคิดอย่างจริงจังว่าฉันโชคดีและรู้สึกขอบคุณแค่ไหน ครอบครัวของฉันแสดงความยินดีกับฉันพร้อมกับพูดติดตลกว่า “ระวังอย่าโง่ง่ายเกินไปอย่าไล่เงิน” และฉันก็ตอบอย่างมั่นใจว่าไม่ไม่ฉันรู้ว่าฉันกำลังทำอะไรอยู่ ก่อนหน้านี้ฉันรู้ว่าฉันจะไม่เป็นแบบนั้น ฉันไม่ระวังเงินให้มาก … ตอนนี้หยุดไม่ได้แล้วฉัน จำกัด บัญชี แต่ฉันยังคงสร้างบัญชีใหม่ในเว็บไซต์ต่างๆ หลังจากที่ฉันแพ้ที่นี่อีกครั้งฉันมักจะแบนพวกเขาที่นี่ 10, 20 ปอนด์, 50 ปอนด์และอื่น ๆ อีกมากมาย ฉันไม่เคยทำลายซึ่งหายาก แม้ว่าฉันจะชนะฉันก็เก็บเงินส่วนใหญ่ไว้ในบัญชีเพื่อเล่น อาจจะอยู่ในม้วน … ดีแค่ถอน 50 ปอนด์ป่วยที่ฉันใส่ จากนั้นก็ส่งใหม่อีกครั้ง .. และอีกครั้งฉันไม่ทันคิดเลขเพื่อหาว่าฉันจะเสียเท่าไหร่ ฉันรู้สึกว่างเปล่า ฉันสะสมมากกว่าที่ฉันคาดไว้จะรู้เช่น ID ทำอะไรสำเร็จ ฉันแค่รู้สึกมึน ๆ ฉันเพิ่งเริ่มเล่นเดิมพันโง่ ๆ เพื่อดูเงินที่มองไม่เห็นหรือไม่? ฉันไม่รู้สึกอะไรเลย ฉันหยุดไม่ได้ จำนวนเงินฝากไม่สำคัญแม้กระทั่งเมื่อฉันรอจนถึงเที่ยงคืนเพื่อเพิ่มอีก คืนนี้ฉันตระหนักว่าฉันมีปัญหามันถูกฝังอยู่ชั่วขณะและฉันได้ปลดล็อคบางอย่างในตัวฉันที่ไม่ได้ใช้งาน ดังนั้นฉันจึงถูกแบนมาก และทุกคนมี ขออภัยที่ไม่ได้อธิบายรายละเอียดเพิ่มเติม แต่ฉันเสียมากกว่า ID ที่ชนะไปแล้ว ฉันใช้จ่ายไปมากเป็นสองเท่าของความสุขที่ได้รับชัยชนะเป็นครั้งแรกในพื้นที่ของสัปดาห์ที่แล้ว อย่าติดตามเงินทั้งหมดที่ฉันชนะและไม่เคยถอนออกโดยคำนวณว่าฉันอาจจะเสียสามครั้งฉันโกหกคู่ของฉันเกี่ยวกับเรื่องนี้แล้ว “โอ้ฉันมีเงินโบนัส” “โอ้ฉันมีเงินเหลือจากครั้งที่แล้ว” ฉันบอบบางและหงุดหงิดเกินไปฉันกำลังเล่นและหยุดตอบสนองเมื่อฉันเล่น ถ้ามันกวนใจฉันระหว่างเกมฉันก็ตัดมันและดึงมันออกมาและฉันก็รู้ตัวในวันนี้และฉันก็รู้สึกไม่สบายตัวจริงๆ เป็นเกมกลยุทธ์ที่เล่นเกมแอพของตัวเองดังนั้นบางครั้งเราจะไม่พูดมากเกินไป ฉันพยายามปรับการใช้จ่ายของฉันเพราะเขาเอาเงินเข้าเกมของเขาด้วยตอนนี้เราทั้งคู่มีเกม อีฟไม่ค่อยเล่นเกมด้วยตัวเองมากนักจนถึงตอนนี้ตอนนี้ฉันโกรธที่เธอพยายามคุยกับฉัน ฉันตระหนักว่ามันอันตรายแค่ไหน ฉันเกือบจะโกรธเขาที่อยู่รอบตัวฉันและหันมาสนใจฉัน แต่ฉันก็ไม่รู้สึกอะไรเลยถ้าฉันชนะหรือแพ้ในเกมเหล่านั้น ฉันแค่กลัวว่าเรื่องนี้จะยุติลงเร็วแค่ไหนดังนั้นฉันหวังว่าฉันจะหยุดได้แล้ว ก่อนที่ฉันจะทำลายทุกอย่างไม่ใช่แค่การเงินฉันหวังว่าฉันจะทำได้ดีขึ้น
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