WPT BootCamp Training for Cash Games completed

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I spent two enjoyable and information filled days at the FoxWoods Casino attending the WPT BootCamp for Cash Game Players. There were 40+ attendees with almost 20% of the audience being female.

Our instructors were:  Lee Childs, Rick Fuller, Nick Brancato, and Eric ‘Rizen’ Lynch.

Rebecca Joy, Event Coordinator at WPT Boot Camp, was the person behind the scenes that help to make things happen. Thank you, Rebecca.

The training took us from Pre-Flop play right down to river play.

The format was lecture, questions and answers, and then labs for each topic.

We were all giving a chance to play several hands of No Limit Holdem poker and then explain why we took the actions we did.

Being able to discuss my game was great and the pros told it like it was.

I took back some great ideas and concepts that I will work into my game.

I will let you know how it works out.

Have you ever had a chance to talk with the pros about your game?

What would you most important question be?

Do you feel it would help?

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"Full Rush" tables at Full Tilt Poker

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It would be hard to imagine that anyone who plays online that has not heard about “Full Rush” poker being played at FullTiltPoker.Com, an affiliate site of mine.

The concept is very simple. You can “quick fold” any hand when you are not the big blind and be moved to another table and get dealt a fresh hand. If you are the big blind, you can “quick fold” as soon as you are raised. You can also advance click a fold option selection, which is helpful if you are playing multiple tables.

The basic idea of the quick fold is to allow you to see more playable hands while folding away the junk … unless of course you crave the action and like playing position poker against the unsuspecting.

There are opportunities to steal blinds if you are the first raiser in the pot, say from middle position.  The blinds may defend button and cut-off raises so you cannot always count on the blinds folding to a pre-flop raise.

There are opportunities to defend blinds with air .. if you re-raise instead of flat calling and then make a pot size bet, the player trying to steal the blinds from the button or cut-off position will usually fold, although not always.

Play the Full Rush poker tables at FTP is a way you build your bankroll and experience action the likes of which you have not seen before. It is also a easy way to lose your bankroll when you make bad decisions. You are also going to run into maniacs and you will have worse hands hold up and beat your good hands.

Be prepared for a roller coaster ride as you end up having to play all styles of players and if you are unable to adapt, you will be losing out on a chance to chip up.

Where do I stand today … I am down about $25, but am now getting some of that back as I have adapted to the many styles of play needed to master these tables. A word of advice: If you lose more than two buy-ins, give it up for a while; if you are winning, keep playing until you start to lose your edge. Because of the increased number of hands you play, you will find that you might to lose your ability to concentrate after a couple thousand hands and that your decisions are not the best. So keep that in mind.

If you have not tried Full Rush poker tables and are a FTP member, give it a try. If you are not an FTP member,  click on one of the FullTiltPoker.Com links and join me at the tables. Look for StevieTrips. But you might have to look quickly as I jump from table to table.

Do you play online poker? Have you played at FullTiltPoker.Com? Have you tried playing at the “Full Rush” table? What were your results?

A “Full Rush” table tip! If you want to see how hands play out at the table you are currently on, click the “Sit out” option before folding. This way, you will be able to see the action at the table. This is helpful when you want to find out what someone was playing when they went all-in and were called.  I once saw an 83 suited go all in against a K8 suited. A three hit the board and the “83” won. These players wagered over $20 each on what was a coin flip.

The Professor, the Banker and the Suicide King – a review

Cover of "The Professor, the Banker, and ...

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I have just finished an interesting book written by Michael Craig entitled The Professor, the Banker, and the Suicide King: Inside the Richest Poker Game of All Time.

This story details perhaps one of the biggest cash games ever played, in excess of $20 million dollars and these events occured between 2001 and 2004 between some of the best professional poker players in the industry and an amateur, a banker by the name of Andrew “Andy” Beal.

Before reading the book, I had not heard a word about this event and yet it involved almost all of the poker superstars that I follow and read about.

The cast of players included the likes of Doyle Brunson, Ted Forrest, “Chip” Reese, Todd Brunson, John Hennigan, Jennifer Harman, Chau Gang, Howard Lederer, Bary Greenstein,  to mention a few.

For the most part, these pros would play heads up or one on one with Andy Beal.  These were his demands and he made them so that he would not feel that he would be cheated. He tried to make them play in games with the blinds being at least $100,000/$200,000 or higher in order to get the pros off of their comfort levels.

Overall this book gives a good insight into the type of lives and thinking the poker pros use on a daily basis. This was a real eye opener for one who might aspire to reach their lofty ranks. You better bring plenty of gamble to the table with you and be prepared to lose as well.

This was a hard book for me to put down. I finished it within a week.

Do you read any poker books that are about the history of the game and about the players?

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Small Ball Poker – a tourney strategy!

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I have just finished reading Power Hold’em Strategy written by Daniel Negreanu. He has five other contributors including himself in the book.

There is something there for both the amateur and the semi-pro as well as secrets that even the poker pros might be able to use to increase their wins. This book is intended for those players that participate in playing tournaments, both online and in a casino.

The bulk of the book is an explanation and tutorial on how to play “Small Ball Poker”, written by Daniel, who excels in that type of play,

On the surface, “small ball” is about winning small pots and building up your stack. It is about avoiding the all-in crippling confrontations that face all of us from time to time. He does not say to totally avoid those situations. But it is best if you only go all-in when you have the “nuts” or the best hand.

While his style of play was for tournaments, I have tried it in cash games with limited success.  This is certainly a book that belongs on your bookshelf if you play lots of tourneys.

Do you already play using “small ball” techniques?

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Initial thoughts on ClubWPT – an affiliate site

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I signed up for a two week trail subscription on ClubWPT.com and decided that I liked the site. Based on what I saw, I also decided to be an affiliate member as well, meaning that I earn chip money if someone else signs up with ClubWPT using the ad on this site.

The software reminds me of the older UltimateBet site now known as UB’. The table interface and options are the same as the older UB software, including the detachable chat, a feature that I enjoy.

For $19.95 a month I get a minimum of 500 tournament points per day to be used for buy-ins for Sit N Go’s and scheduled tourneys.  Just today, there were over 50 events available with buy-ins ranging from zero to 400 points with most of the events priced at 25 points or less. You can earn points that can be used to play more games.

This site is geared up for the player that aspires to play mostly in tournaments. The “cash games” on this site are using only “play money”.

Based on this weeks schedule, there are daily $1,000 prize tourneys with top place being paid $150. There are also events that can win you a seat to an upcoming WPT event or even a spot at a WPT Boot Camp!

There are even Sit N Go’s with buy-ins set at 10, 25, 100 or 250 points.  The point games are either No Limit Hold ‘Em or Omaha Pot Limit. The “play chips” games selections include those and Stud, Stud 8/b, Triple Draw and Omaha H/L.

To find out more check the following links:
http://www.clubwpt.com/what_is_clubwpt.html

http://www.clubwpt.com/member_benefits.html

The best part of the site is that it is an absolutely legal online poker site for US  citizens.

Have you looked over Club WPT? Do you already play there? What is your player name there? (mine is stevebrogan)

I play in fast tournments – and some are faster than others

The poker tables in the Trump Taj Mahal
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I have just completed a book about tournament poker that has turned my thinking upside down about how I should play.

The book,  The Poker Tournament Formula by Arnold Snyder, stated that the type of tourneys with levels increasing in 5, 10, 15, 20 or 30 minute increments are considered to be “fast tournaments” by his definition.

Snyder states that fast tourneys require more luck than skill due to the fact that the blinds and antes increase quickly to the point that all players, except perhaps the chip leader at the final table, will be short stacked.

In order to survive a fast tourney, Snyder says that you must play aggressively at the start of the tourney while the value of the blinds and antes are low in order to accumulate chips quickly. He does suggest that stealing the blinds and taking shots at winning pots are one way to amass the chips that you will need at the end of a tournament.

The style of play that he suggests for a fast tourney is not one that I am used to playing. In fact, I usually tend to be a little more careful when I play. When I tried to use some of the ideas and methods that he suggested, I ended up busting out of the tourneys rather quickly. Perhaps I need more practice?

He does state that the style of play needed to win will actually see you busting out early but states that this is better than surviving only to make it to the final table without enough chips to win. Winning back your buy-in should not be your goal – winning first place is the goal. You cannot just wait for good cards as they do not come around often enough in a fast tourney. However, if you have large starting stacks of double or triple the normal 1,000 – 1,500 you can be a little more selective about taking shots and risks.

The skills that he teaches in this book, he says are also useful in slow tournaments such as the WPT five day events. All tourneys at some point towards the end become a fast tournament. If you have the skills necessary to win a fast tourney you should do fine at the slow ones. The more skills that you have, the better off you will be.

Do you play in both fast and slow tourneys? How does your style vary from each type? How do you go about accumulating chips?

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Switching Gears!

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Today’s post is a bit off topic as I share with you some of the blogs that I like to read and that I think have value. I use Google Reader and subscribe to about 50 poker related blogs. Using Google Reader allows me to preview the current postings and then choose the ones I want to read in detail.

One of the blogs I read is the “Poker Bankroll Blog”, which uses guest writers. There is usually something there that I find educational or at least very entertaining.

This week I read Swyyft’s posterous blog and was entertained by the story he shared concerning the chat during a session with a high stakes online poker player.

The Mystical Jett is another blog site that contains very interesting and thoughtful posts and reviews.  Jett’s twitter account is @mysticaljett. I play poker online from time to time with him.

Paul Ellis writes on Pablos Place where he brings a lot of passion about poker, putting a “Bad Beat on Cancer”.  On twitter he is known as @coolwhipflea. We also run into each other on the online felt.

Bill Rini, a professional poker player is currently living in Thailand and always has something interesting, and very often, important to say about the state of online poker around the world at Bill’s Poker Blog.   Just visiting to see what pictures he has posted there is an adventure.  Follow Bill on twitter, @billrini.

Goeff Manning, aka @cprpoker on Twitter, has at least three great blogs. Complete Poker Rules contains recent stories regarding poker as well as sections about the rules of various poker games.  The Twitter Poker Tour site is both a forum and a resource for those of us who play on the #TPT tourneys. You will find the leader board, schedules and lots lots more. His latest site, Worth Cause Poker is dedicated to getting out information about fund raising poker events for charity. If you know of any local or national events, please let him know so that he can include it in his blog.

These are just a few of the many blogs that I check daily. Do you have any favorite blogs that you go for poker news or entertainment? Do you have some that you would recommend to me or others?

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