Sunday, September 16, 2012

WSOP-2013: Week #3

Today is Sunday, so it's time for a recap of this week's prep/progress toward WSOP-2013.
  • Preparation:
    • Pregame. Poor. As usual. Sigh.
    • Postgame. Did some post-mortems.  Also, I downloaded PokerTracker4 trial version. I'm not thrilled with HM2's tournament stats, especially the fact that it seems to lose data occasionally. I'm not sure if PT4 is much better, but a 30 day free trial will hopefully allow me to decide if it's worth converting back to 'Tracker so I can do better post mortems and track my results more accurately. The kind of amazing thing to me is that the PT4 hand/data import took over 24 hours to complete. Why? Answer: because I had 1.5 million hands of data. Seriously. Holy cow, I've played a lot of poker.
    • Off-Table.
      • Forums/Hand-of-the-Day. Only made a couple posts to 2+2, and they were in regard to my Donkey Test questions. I did, however, post a number of hands of the day answers. The more I do the HoD, the more useful I think it is to improving one's game.
      • Books.  Still reading Snyder's PTF book, and in fact I ordered the sequel, which is called PTF2. While the first book is focused on fast tourneys, the second is all about big, slow, skill-based tourneys like the WSOP. Once I finish PTF1, I'll jump into PTF2.
      • Videos.  Watched some more of the Last Man Standing series; focus is still on early-mid game play.
      • Podcasts.  Listed to 2.5 hours total of podcasts during lunchtime walks. One hour of this was Bart Hanson on cash games, the remainder was the 2+2 podcast. One thing to note about Hanson's 'cast this week is that even though the weekly podcast is about hold'em cash game, he talked about some deuce-to-seven lowball triple draw poker, as well as some PLO hands. His point in discussing these hands is that poker is poker, regardless of game type, and that to get better at one form (read: hold'em) you can/should occasionally play other forms.
      • Health.  Lost back most of the weight I gained last week, although Friday night was a tough one because we went to my in-laws house for dinner, which of course was a giant smorgasbord of delicious German food, including spetzle, rouladen, cheese noodles, desserts, etc. Did a pretty good job of exercising all week. Started recording not only my weight, but also resting pulse and blood pressure (which ain't very good, btw, sigh.)
      • Other.  
        • Did a couple of SnG push/fold 10-question quizzes on the trial version of PT4. 
        • Signed up for this year's WRGPT "Glaciers" tournament.
  • Technique:
    • Preflop.  Played a couple of 45-man $5-buyin tourneys semi-blind. What this means is that I taped some paper over my cards on my screen so that I couldn't see my hand preflop, and I had to act purely on my position and reads on the opp. Postflop, I cbet blind, but I allowed myself to look at my cards if I got action back on me. These exercises were extremely illuminating and, frankly, difficult. I found myself really wanting to know what my cards were, but I also realized that in both of the tourneys I played this way I went very deep before busting. Interestingly, in reviewing my hand history after the fact I learned that I had twice folded sets that would have won big, but I also folded AKs and JJ in EP, both of which would have knocked me out of the tourney if I'd played them. Also, in both tourneys, when I finally had to take the paper off the screen and play normally (because my stack was so short) I busted out holding "legitimate" hands. As Snyder says in PTF1, you almost always bust out of a tournament holding good cards; i.e., your own cards are the weakest/least-important factor when playing. I intend to play more tourneys blind this coming week. Annette_15 is my (re)new(ed) hero.
    • Postflop.
      • Evals (RED).  Except for reviewing some of my Donkey Test answers, I didn't do much in the way of working on this aspect of my game.
      • Line Implementations (i).  Worked some more on "creative" line implementations. Delayed c-betting and floating in particular as bluffs.
  • Emotional Control:
    • Tilt Control.  Generally did a good job keeping emotions under control. That said, the more tourneys I play, the more I realize how difficult this is in the long run for the MTT grinder. Unlike cash, where if you go more than 2 or 3 days of losing you know it's your play and not the variance of the game, wins at MTTs are ridiculously few and far between. I listened to an interview of Antonio Esfandiari on the 2+2 podcast this week in which he said he's gone years without winning a big live MTT. To become a tournament grinders, you better have your emotions under control.
    • BRM.  Played well within BRM for tourneys, but as usual strayed a bit in cash.
    • Discipline.   Was 90% successful this week at playing highly disciplined, patient, focused poker. Alas, the other 10% (i.e., one cash session) was a disaster, with me playing totally unfocused and distracted. Dumped back a ton of money in cash during that one forty minute session.
$ Results:
  • Tournaments (Online). About broke even for the week playing most $5.50 and $11 9-handed games and 45-man tourneys. Nothing wonderous to report.
  • Tournaments (Live). Played in a live 37-man game, but busted one before the final table was formed.
  • Cash Games. In addition to some $50NL and $100NL, I played some $25PL Omaha. Actually lost some money in hold'em, but made up for it in PLO, for a net gain of essentially zero.

Summary: In general this was a so-so week. It feels like I need to work harder on specific REDi things like tournament hand reading. Otherwise, I am mostly on track and am incrementally improving my tournament game, bit by bit.

All-in for now...

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