Thursday, January 29, 2015

Lammer jammer mamma

Above: When you play in satellites, they pay you with tournament buy-in chips called lammers (see below for Wiki definition).

The WSOPC hasn't gone well. I played the first few days with nothing to show for it. In one, I made a big mistake and didn't recover. Another I had two bad beats: I lost with K K to K 10, all-in pre-flop when the board ran out with four diamonds. I built my stack back up, then called a guy's all-in on the flop of 4-3-3 when he had 2 2 and I had A A. A 2 on the river was the two-outer he needed. When you're running bad, you're running bad. I took a couple of days off to regroup.

When I was in Las Vegas last summer, I talked to a guy who told me he won all his entry fees (he played the Senior Event and the Main Event) by playing the one-table satellites there. I've always avoided them thinking they were a crap shoot -- low starting chips and fast levels. He swore no, they were beatable, but (paradoxically) you have to play ultra-tight. That didn't make sense to me, so I expressed my skepticism, but he continued to tell me the same thing. This was a guy I played with, talked to, and liked. He wasn't some nut, so I had to a least consider what he was saying.

After I took two days off here, I decided to try them as an experiment. The Tunica Horseshoe event is offering three kinds: $75 buy-in with 1500 starting chips and 10-minute levels, $125 buy-in with 2000 starting chips (pays $1125) and 15-minute levels, and $200 buy-in with 3000 chips and 15-minute levels (pays $1850).

Tuesday, I played in three of the $125 type and chopped one of them, so came out ahead for the day. What I discovered is that you do have more play than you would suspect, and playing tight is right. If you have one misstep, however, you are in trouble. You don't have enough chips to withstand that unless you were lucky enough to double up early.

Wednesday, I played in one of the $200s. When there were two of us left, we each had 15K chips, so agreed to an even chop. Chops are common when two- or three-handed. Even the bad players know that anything can happen when short-handed, so they are willing to minimize the risk by chopping. That was a $925 profit, so, hey, I think I might like these things.

You are paid with lammers and cash, but mostly lammers. You can sell them to anyone entering a tournament, so they are essentially the same as cash (see photo above).

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In a casino setting, lammers are also used to indicate which variant is being used, whose turn it is to pay the blind etc.., and lammers are also a name for "chips" awarded in satellite tournaments as buy-in chips to larger tournaments.

Poker equipment - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Image taken with my cell phone. I brought my camera, but left my cable (to connect to my laptop) in FL, so using phone.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

First event is in the books

I played in Event No. 1 of the WSOP-C playing in Tunica MS. There were 338 runners, 10K starting chips and 30-minute levels. I won a big pot early with A Q when the flop was A-Q-5 rainbow. I was in the small blind and checked. The button bet and I check-raised him big, he called. The turn was a 4 and we both checked. The river was a 3, so a 2 would make a straight, but we both knew the other person didn't have that. I value-bet the river and he called.

After that I drifted down. I lost a decent-sized pot when the villain stuck around and hit a flush. Sometimes, I c-bet and had to give up to a raise.

When the blinds were 150/300/25, it folded to me on the button. I bet 700 with 8 7 and the big blind called. I hit an amazing flop: 7-6-5, giving me top pair and an open-ended straight draw. Villain checked, I bet 850, and he check-raised to 2100 (or something like that). I went all in and he called and showed: 6-4 for a pair of 6s and also an open-ended straight draw. He had nine outs (four 3s, two 6s and 3 8s). His 4 wasn't an out as that gives me my straight.

The odds calculator at Card Player says I was a 68.3% favorite to his 20.6% with some chance of a split pot. The turn was the 2 and my odds increased to 79.55% and he was 20.45. A 6 on the river was not the news I was looking for.

That left me with one big blind, and I busted out shortly after that.

I kept my notebook again. I played 20 hands out of about 80 for a 25% rate, much better than the last time I kept track. I won 6 of these which included a walk.

Tomorrow is another day.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Heading to colder weather

The WSOP has what is called Circuit Events that rotate to various venues throughout the year. The next one in at the Horseshoe Casino Tunica (see image above). I've played in these before, and even though I haven't won a ring, I've had some good results (see here, for example).

I'll be leaving sunny Florida shortly to head back to the Memphis area. I haven't been playing much lately, and I've got a poker Jones. Right now it's 71 degrees here (Fahrenheit) and 50ish in Memphis. It's all about making sacrifices, isn't it?

See here for the schedule of events, and good luck moi.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Cheap gas

I'm back in the Memphis area for a few days for some doctor stuff. One of the things I like about living here is that the people are friendly and nice. I also like it that most things are inexpensive. Gas for $177.9? Are you kidding me?

I know that the price of gas is going down, but I bet it's not this cheap where you live, is it?

Photo taken with my cell phone.