Sunday, October 21, 2012

WSOP-2013: Week #8

It’s Sunday, so time for a recap of this past week's prep/progress toward WSOP-2013:
  • Preparation:
    • Pregame. Played in only a couple of tourneys, but I went very deep in one of them (a small stakes 250-man event) last Sunday. This deep run was due, in large part, to my pre-game mantra that I kept repeating throughout the game: Fold unless there's a very good reason not to. Fold, Bug. Fold, dammit. Why wouldn't you fold, knucklehead? Come on already and FOLD! Etcetera.
    • Postgame. Reviewed a couple of key hands from the MTT, especially those where I started to get "thirsty" for chips well after the bubble burst. I'm not sure what if anything I could have done differently, however.
    • Off-Table.
      • Forums/Hand-of-the-Day. Blogged about one hand of the day, which was the one where I concluded folding KQs from the blinds was the right play in a MTT against a shorter stacked player raising from LP. You can read it here. It is interesting to note that I received a number of emails from 4-5 readers who strongly disagreed with me, but after a lot of thought, I'm sticking with my original answer. Fold unless there's a very good reason not to. In this particular hand, there isn't a very good reason to call.
      • Books. I read some more of both Snyder's second book and the Winning Poker Tournaments book, Volume 1. My wife also picked me up a used poker book at the local library book sale she frequently goes to. The book is Hold'em on the Come: Limit Hold'em Strategy For Drawing Hands, by Slotboom and Mason. I'm not really a limit guy, but the book looks really interesting regardless. In fact, I posted a Bug's Tip on missed draws that hit me like an "a-ha!" moment after skimming the book. You miss your draws on average 2/3's of the time, so how are you going to make money off of them? Good question.
      • Videos.Watched the start of a cheap set of videos I purchased on live tells. So far it's just "meh" but I'll stick through them and see what I can divine..
      • Podcasts. Listened a bit to a Vanessa Selbst "video" that was in fact effectively just a podcast (i.e., a video without any pictures; weird.). Selbst is one of my favorite players, so it was informative to listen to her talk with another MTT expert about 3- and 4-bet ranges in MTTs. Also listened to Hanson's weekly podcast, plus some of the Thinking Poker 'cast. All good stuff.
      • Health.Tough week to stay the course due to long work days and "design review food" which is typically high-carb, empty calorie fests, including donuts, bagels, pastas, cookies, etc... We also did a big group meal one night, in which I over did it on rich Mexican food and beer. I did a modicum of exercise, however, and jumped back on the wagon hard Friday and Saturday. The scales this morning show I'm actually down another pound overall this week, which surprised me, as did my slightly lower blood pressure and resting pulse rate. Overall, I've dropped about ten pounds since starting this WSOP prep process.
  • Technique:
    • Preflop. As mentioned above, I played a moderately-sized, low stakes 250-man tourney this past weekend and went very deep, nearly final tabling. A large part of my success was just not getting involved preflop with marginal hands like KJs and QJo, even from the button in limped pots. I tried hard to focus on stack sizes and getting inside the heads of my opponents before making the choice to enter a pot. More often than not, the answer I got back from that little voice in my own head was: Fold.
    • REDi
      • Applied REDi to a hand of a day, which helped reinforce the Snyder's advice to "hang it up" if you don't get inside your opponent's head. One of the keys to doing this  is the evaluation of opponents' stack sizes and figuring out how desperate they are. As the old poker adage goes: figure out what your opponent wants, then do the opposite. 
      • Took some hand reading notes from the Thinking Poker podcast; good, basic stuff, which I blogged about here.
      • Posted a Bug's Poker Tip on missing draws, here.
  • Emotional Control:
    • Tilt Control. Nothing significant to report, primarily because I played hardly any poker.
    • BRM. Again, nothing significant to talk about.
    • Discipline. Words I try to live by, both on the tables and in life in general: "The difference between what you want, and what you have, is what you do."  I want to go to the WSOP next year, and I want to go deep. Ergo, I have a lot to do between now and then. It's really that simple.
$ Results:
  • Tournaments (Online). 17th place for $60 in profit in a 250-man online tournament. Busted out with AKo. Was down to 12 big blinds and antes were well in force. I three-bet jammed on a MP limper, but got called by a huge stack in the big blind. He turned over JTs and hit a T on the turn. Sigh. It really is true that more often than not, you end up busting from a tournament with a pretty good hand. Small consolation, however....
  • Tournaments (Live). None.
  • Cash Games. None.

Summary: Despite it being a crazy busy week at work, and me only playing a few times, I feel like I actually made some progress on my game. There's still a lot of ground to cover, however, and I'm already two months into this prep for the WSOP.... Holy crap. Two months already?!? Time flies....

All-in for now...

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