Sunday, November 11, 2012

WSOP-2013: Week #11

It’s Sunday, so time for a recap of this week's prep/progress toward WSOP-2013:
  • Preparation:
    • Pregame. I worked a little bit again on my MTT preflight checklist. Nothing earth shattering, but it's still useful things to remind oneself of prior to playing a big MTT. For example, the lesson I continually seem to forget lately is: Don't chase draws! Raise or fold, but don't call down! 
    • Postgame. Zip.
    • Off-Table.
      • Forums/Hand-of-the-Day. Read a couple of HotD, but didn't comment on any of them.
      • Books. Still working through V's 1 and 2 of Winning Poker Tournaments.One of the key things that continually jumps out at me reading the hand analyses is how much more frequently the pros fold in marginal situations than I do. This seems to be a big hint staring me in the eyes...
      • Videos. None watched.
      • Podcasts. Listened to first half of this week's Thinking Poker.
      • Health. Not a good week health-wise due to travel. I ended up eating fast food a handful of times during my biz trip, and did exactly one lunchtime walk. Otherwise, no exercise, little sleep, long work days, poor diet, etc. Not surprisingly, I'm up a couple of pounds this morning, blood pressure is up, feeling unmotivated and lethargic, and so on.
      • Other. On the two long flights I took this week, I played a half-dozen MTT simulations via the DD poker software package. I have found some of these tournaments to be surprisingly challenging. The AI of the computer villains isn't super advanced, but it's not bad, either. It's also remarkable to me how closely you have to pay attention to every single little thing in a tournament, even a simulated one. This includes opp stack sizes, their tendencies, etc. One seemingly minor mistake or lapse can seriously harm your stack. Yikes.
  • Technique:
    • Preflop. Been experimenting a bit with different opening ranges in the DD software, sometimes playing very loose and passive PF early in the tourney (i.e., small ball poker), sometimes being super tight and aggressive (long ball), and sometimes somewhere in the middle. I seem to have the best success playing small ball, focusing on getting off marginal hands postflop. In other words: see cheap flops IP, then play poker post-flop. And especially: don't bloat the pot OOP preflop, even with hands as strong as AQs.
    • REDi. Blogged about some basic lessons learned watching the WSOP final table. Also posted a Bug Tip on taking the best of it; years ago this was one of those "a-ha" moments, and I've been actively reapplying it to my STSnG and MTT thought processes when playing.
  • Emotional Control:
    • Tilt Control. Travel fatigue and some home-life angst caused me to play poorly in a couple of STSnGs I played on the road. Otherwise, I've done OK.
    • BRM. The 'roll continues to grow, albeit a bit slower than usual due to little actual seat time.
    • Discipline. Trying to work on patience and "not panicking" in tourneys when my stack takes a hit and/or drops below average. For instance, I played extremely well in the one 75-man MTT I played online for the first 95% of the tourney, being very selective, picking my spots, chipping up, getting off losers, etc. This despite a 25% loss early on due to a cooler. Really thinking through hands and opp motivations helps a lot, too, as does taking advantage of the different phases of an MTT. I really attacked the bubble, for instance, and was quickly the chip leader with a 3:1 stack advantage when we made the money.... ah, but then I over did it. For some reason, I played like my stack mattered more than what my opponents' actions were telling me I should. Sigh. Busted in 4th place, albeit for a nice little ROI, but it's still aggravating that I was in a great position to win the tourney but had a discipline lapse there at the end that cost me a big jump in payout money. Grrr.
$ Results:
  • Tournaments (Online). Played four microstakes STSnGs and one MTT for a total net profit of $55.
  • Tournaments (Live). None played (and I'm going to miss this week's live MTT due to travel).
  • Cash Games. Broke even playing a couple hundred hands of $50NL 6max online.

Summary: As mentioned last week, this month is going to be more about surviving and not backsliding than it is about any real forward progress. This morning, for instance, I'm off on yet another week-long biz trip, in which bad food, lots of sitting, and little exercise will probably rule the days. It's not just a job....

All-in for now...

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