Monday, April 23, 2007

MATH, the 400k, and More on the FTOPS Satellites

The Battle of the Blogger Tournaments returns this week with two tournaments for your donking pleasure, starting with tonight's Mondays at the Hoy tournament at 10pm ET on full tilt:

Remember, the buyin for the new full-tilt-bound MATH tournament is a Tier I token or $26 cash, and it is a double-stack tournament, meaning that everyone who plays will start off with 3000 chips instead of the normal 1500 chips for most of full tilt's other multi-table events. The action has been fast and furious over the past three weeks at the MATH since the BBT took effect, and the result has been prize pools of well over a thousand bucks for each. Almost anyone can capture the top spot on the 2007 MATH moneyboard with a victory this evening, and then you won't have to listen to my incessant blogadoccio for another week because I'm still on the top of the list. So why not take your shot at fame and notoriety by taking over the yearly money lead from me tonight at Mondays at the Hoy!

Anyways, as far as my weekend of poker went, I think I can sum it up in one word: tilt. I didn't do anything much on Friday or Saturday night, only playing maybe one or two tournaments over the two days, but one thing I did do was play in the Sunday afternoon 400k guaranteed on full tilt. Basically I had watched the kids all afternoon on Saturday, and the Hammer Wife, being the goddess that she is, suggested to me for the second straight week that I should just play the big weekly guaranteed tourney on full tilt to get some time to myself to make up for my giving her Saturday afternoon off with her family. And who am I to argue with that logic, huh?

OK so fast forward to Sunday evening, where I'm sitting in the 400k guaranteed, and then I run into the following gem after nearly doubling my stack early against a donk who insisted on calling multiple bets from me with just an inside straight draw:

I limp utg with Aces (notice guys, not with AJ, but with pocket Aces):

Of course here I'm hoping someone will raise it behind me, so I can repop it with the best of all possble starting holdem hands. This move tends to work especially well for me, as I come in raising in maybe 95% of the hands I choose to play before the flop, so when I limp up front at a table I've sat at for a while, people tend to smell weakness and try to take the action away from me right away. I get my wish:

Yup. A raiser and a caller of that raise. I love it. So what do I do here? Of course, I make the baby Jebus cry with a min-reraise:

Now if this guy can't smell the Aces yet, after I limp UTG and then min-reraise a 4x raiser and a caller of that raise, then he's a clown. Ok so he's a clown. Awesome. So I'm seeing a flop 3-handed, although the first guy to my left is already allin, and it's just between me and the guy at the bottom of the screen who couldn't sniff out my Aces.

Shitty flop for my Aces, no doubt. But, since this guy called a big raise preflop with me having already limped UTG as well, I can't really be afraid of his hand at this point. In my head he's gotta have a pair of face cards or AK, and although you tighty donks out there are thinking "Oh no he's made a set of 7s!", in reality that is plainly speaking a downright foolish conclusion. Of course. So I'm allin. As I have him on a high pocket pair, I think I have to do this here since I am as close to knowing I'm ahead of him, given the preflop action, as I could possibly be, and I think there's a good chance that he'll call me as well.

He calls my allin on the flop and...BINGO!!! I'm going to be in 2nd place out of about 1750 players remaining after I take down this 11,481-chip pot. The first guy is an uberdonk moving allin with KTo. The second guy, he's just the chump who ran his KK into AA. Man I love being the guy with the Aces against the Kings once in a long while. The turn is a harmless 3, and I'm one card away from being off to a 2nd place start in the 400k guaranteed. Which, btw, I'm totally going to win.

To describe this as "crushing" doesn't even begin to do justice to the way I felt when that King hit the river. That fucknut had one card and one card only that could win him the big portion of this pot. Yes the donk on the right had his four 9's as well, but even if one of them hit I'm still winning about 8500 chips on the hand overall since his was just the smaller main pot. I think my favorite part about the fucking shitcocking King on the river is that the donk on the right already has the third King in his hand, meaning that this is literally the only card left in the deck for mister 14141414 to hit on the river. There goes my buyin, and my chance to win the 75k first prize or whatever it is. All stolen away from me by the fuckers at full tilt. I'm beside myself as I write this right now. Time to get drunk. Thanks to my late-afternon grocery run today, tonight's buzz will be brought to you be the good Irishmen who make Killian's Red.

And hey, at least this is some solid kind of player to be off to a 2nd place start in the first hour of the 400k guaranteed on full tilt, right? Check out 14141414's lifetime stats:

Great. Nothing like a 49-to-1 loss on the river to an abject donkass muggafugga to start your poker week, to a guy with four cash wins of any kind in full tilt mtt's in his entire life, and none larger than $29 (yes you read that right, $29), until winning his way in to the 400k on Sunday in a 1215-person, $50 buyin mtt satellite which awarded seats to the top 300 or so entrants. That's the kind of donk who took this pot from me, and who, by the way, managed to end near the bottom of the top 100 in the 400k (I checked along the way) for a cash payout of around $350 thanks to that redickusuckout. 49 to 1. One in 50 times he hits that shit. With his Kings. To beat my Aces. Un. Fucking. Believable. And you just know I would have done so much more with that huge starting stack than making less than twice the buyin for this tournament. Grrrrrr.

Now, since this is me we're talking about, let's just say that I spent the rest of Sunday night taking out my anger about this beat on my bankroll. As if my roll had anything to do with causing this redickushitness. I played 3 or 4 ftops satellites, donking easily and stoopidly out of all but one of them. In the fourth, an mtt satellite to FTOPS Event #1, I was way, way out in first place with 8 players left, with the top 3 finishers winning seats, as I had a chip stack that was more than 3 times bigger then the guy then in fourth place. I could have basically folded to the money at that point. Well, jump ahead an hour later and not one, not two but three AK losses to QQ, and even still I had clawed my way back into second place when the first place guy calls my allin reraise with his A5s against my pocket 6s (what a fucking donkeysucker!), he hits his Ace on the flop and IGH in 5th place. I still can't believe the way that last one happened. But it's ok, because I was just hemorraging my roll on Sunday. Completely bleeding it out. Most of it, being done on purpose by me. I mean, I would enter tournaments, solely with the intent of moving allin preflop the first time I found any two face cards, regardless of the other action at the table. I knew I was tilting but I just didn't care. This is me at my worst, as I have always had a problem with tilt and that beat in the 400k just set me off redickulously. I know I need to get better about this, I always have known, and if you can believe it I'm actually much better about it nowadays than I was a year or two ago. But I'm still a terrible tilter, make no mistake. And the result of last night's self-inflicted rampage? I tilted off around a third of my existing roll on full tilt. Just like that. Mostly on purpose. It was unreal. I'm embarrassed to even admit that, but it's true. Now, I don't keep a huge amount of money on any of the poker sites anymore so it's not like I lost 5 grand or anything. But believe me when I say, this was one of the worst nights of tilt in my entire life of playing poker. Perhaps even the worst.

I've written about this several times before, but the 400k debacle was one of the very worst kind of bad beats to me. I've always said, at least to me, it's one thing to lose to a bad beat when the other guy is blinded in, or basically had the pot odds and had to get allin or whatever. Those suck ballz, and they too can tilt me no doubt. But in my head it's a whole other ballgame when I use superior play and trickery, fucking fool some guy (or in this case, two guys) into putting all their chips into play when I have deliberately made them sure they're ahead, and then I spring my trap on them. I think about that feeling in the stomachs of my two 400k opponents who got allin preflop and on the flop in that hand. I think about them literally involunatarily sucking in air when they saw my Aces, in particular the guy with the Kings. I think about him seeing the third King in the other allin opponent's hand, and knowing it was over. I just love knowing how he had to deal in the first couple milliseconds with knowing that he just got played, played by the ultimate player. I love knowing that I caused him to feel that way, and to feel that overwhelming sense of loss, in what I assume was his first-ever 400k guaranteed tournament, and the biggest-buyin event he's ever played in. And then to have it all raped away from me by a 49-to-1 card at the river, it just drives me nucking futs. Like I've said, it's one thing to just lose to a bad beat that happens because of the randomness of the cards. But when I set up the fucking beat to begin with, when I use my poker skills and my deception to trick someone into giving me all their chips, I have a major problem dealing with losing like that.

Given the magnitude of the tournament itself, the fact that I would have been off to a second-place start within the first hour, and just given the redickulousness of my 98% favorite on the river, this hand in the 400k is without a doubt one of my all-time worst bad beats. It may or may not be the literal #1 worst, I don't know -- my wife suggested my WSOP beat at the hands of Joe Hachem last year, and maybe she's right -- but it is without a doubt in the top few. And man did it suck, and it ended up costing me a lot more than just my shot at the 75k first prize. A third of my full tilt roll later, and I'm still trying to find my footing. I can only hope that tonight I am able to play with some more stability than on Sunday, or else it's gonna be another short run for me in the Hoy. At least I did manage to win a little at the $200 nlh 6-max cash tables last night, as I sat at a table that ended up having fellow poker blogger nabomb at it, and both of us played most of the session at or above the $300 mark thanks to some early wins and consistently solid play, which helped to erase some earlier cash losses when my tilt rage was at its worst. Still, I head into this evening's poker play with probably more questions than answers, and I'm just hoping something good happens early on for me or it could be a short night for me on a lot of fronts. In fact, look for me at the Hoy because I'm going to have to be drunk on my Killian's already by the time that badboy starts if I'm ever going to be calm enough to even consider playing +EV poker. And a drunk Hoyazo is always a threat to make a dumb play, and even more of a threat to go off on somebody in the chat and/or to write a drunken rant for tomorrow's blog post. Ahhh the joys of being an angry, tilting drunk.

OK well after that happy little interlude, I just want to get back to the new "Avatar Race" on full tilt, as promised last week. After having a weekend to check things out, here's the scoop. So the FTOPS is coming up again, ten events as always, ranging from May 11 to May 20 next month. As with the past three FTOPS series, the overall winner of the entire series in FTOPS points will win his or her own avatar created specially for him or her for use on full tilt in the future. As a result, in the past, full tilt has run something called an "avatar race", which is a multi-event satellite that awards the winner(s) with seats to multiple of the FTOPS tournaments, and hence it is called an "avatar race" since it is a satellite to help someone get a leg up in the race for the avatar by entering them in multiple FTOPS events for one satellite victory. Anyways, as recently as FTOPS III this past February, I actually won an avatar race so I know from experience, this was a $75 (tier II token) buyin, and it awarded seats to three of the ten FTOPS events -- events #1, 6 and 8 if you're counting.

Well, I guess full tilt decided that they are really in to the whole avatar race idea, as they have expanded the concept even further for FTOPS IV in May. Just like in February, full tilt now runs an avatar race once every night at 10:30pm ET. The newly created avatar race carries a $216 buyin, typical of full tilt's larger buyin tournaments, what I tend to think of as a Tier III sort of buyin, even though Tier III tokens do not exist (yet) on the site. In addition to expanding the buyin for the avatar race since FTOPS III, full tilt has also expanded the prize package for this nightly event, which now awards a seat to FTOPS Events #1, 3, 6, 8 and 10 (the main event). So winning one of these seats is a quick n easy way to get into five of the 10 FTOPS tournaments, just like that. It's a really cool idea, and the best part is that, due to the $216 buyin and the $1505 total prize package award, it is basically one avatar race winner for every 7.5 entrants. So if you get the 40 or so entrants that has been common during the first few days of this event, the top 5 finishers will win the 5 FTOPS seats. You really can't do much better than those odds as far as a quality mtt satellite, and for a guy like me this is basically just what I'm looking for.

Now, after tilting off a third of my online roll this weekend, I can't exactly be buying in to this $216 avatar race for cash very regularly. But, never fear, since full tilt continues to be the smartest- and best-run online poker site out there, they have devised a range of five nightly satellites to the avatar race, which run every single night between 7:45pm ET and 8:40pm ET for your satelliting pleasure. Those satellites, all of which are very reasonably priced, are:

7:45pm ET -- $10 turbo nlh mtt with one guaranteed winner. This one is cheap, but it also does not IMO offer a very favorable number of winners for the difficulty of coming in first place out of the entire field. Remember, you need 44 players in order to award just two avatar race seats, and so far this satellite has yet to approach the 44 player plateau.

8pm ET - $14 turbo nlh mtt, also win one guaranteed winner. Again, the buyin is good but this suffers IMO from the same problem as the first satellite listed above. You need more than 31 players to award two avatar race seats at $216 a pop, and again there has not yet been 31 players in this thing, and even if there were, personally I prefer to spend a little more up front to get better odds than just one winner out of every 16 entrants. As with the first sat above, you basically need to win this thing outright in order to win your seat to the avatar race, and that's a pretty tall order for anybody of any skill level in my view.

8:10pm ET - $5 turbo rebuy nlh mtt, with one guaranteed winner. Now here is a structure I love and really excel at -- the rebuy satellite, but the problem here is the $5 buyin. Make this badboy a $15 buyin and I would be hooked. And I'd be playing in the avatar race every single night. But here I think full tilt screwed up, although I'm sure they are trying to make this thing affordable to the masses. And the result is that, even though I love the rebuy structure for an mtt satellite like this, this thing has never even been close to awarding more than one avatar race seat in its first several days of running. So for now I gotta stay away from this one as well, which really hurts since I own full tilt rebuy satellites.

8:20pm ET - $24 turbo nlh mtt, with one seat guaranteed. Now this is getting to be more up my alley. Yes you have to come up with a tier I token or $26 cash to buy in to this satellite, but at least it awards an avatar race seat for every 9 entrants. That's my kind of odds -- get 27 players, and the top 3 win seats. It's still not great, but it's doable and I'll probably play it most nights until I win one of these avatar race badboys.

8:40pm ET - $40 turbo nlh mtt, with one seat guaranteed. This is the last of the nightly avatar race satellites, and as is often the case on full tilt, the last one is also the best one, if you have the bankroll to buy in to it. In this case, it's a hefty $40 a pop to enter this satellite, but at least it awards one seat for every 5.4 players entered. So, if 22 people play in this 8:40pm ET satellite, then the top 4 will win avatar race seats. This is the kind of odds where I want to be, and I will probably be in this thing as well most nights when I'm online by 8:40pm.

As far as I'm concerned, there are only two things full tilt is missing with these avatar race satellites (not that you asked me). First as I mentioned above is a $14 or even a $20 rebuy satellite into the avatar race. I wish they would add this, but I find that somewhat unlikely as they already affirmatively chose to run a rebuy sat but elected to go with the lowest-common-denominator of $5 for the buyin/rebuy cost instead of a more winning-ratio-friendly higher number. The other thing I wish full tilt would do, which I think there is probably some chance of them adding if the avatar race does not start filling up a little more over the next week or two, is add a $75 tier II token buyin avatar race satellite. I know the buyin is a bit steep, but my roll can afford it (even after this weekend), and I would play that shiat probably every single night to get in to the nightly 10:30pm ET avatar race. I mean, they run a regular $75 satellite into the weekly $216 HORSE mtt, so why not into the nightly avatar race as well? I'm hoping they will consider this over the coming week or two to help stimulate action in the avatar race, which I have to say, after a weekend spent researching what's out there, has got to be the best overall value for getting in to a number of the FTOPS events for a minimal buyin.

That's all I got for today. Remember, I'll be hammered by the time you see me tonight at the virtual tables, probably in a few of the avatar race satellites I mentioned above, as well as possibly one or more of the 9 o'clock hour satellites to the midnight ET bracelet race. Come look for me because drunk Hoy is always a threat to give away his chips.

And speaking of giving away my chips, I'll see you tonight for Mondays at the Hoy on full tilt!

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Blogger smokkee said...

i also got donkeypunched outta the 400k yesterday. it's no 1-outer. but, it still stung.

*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to smokkee [Ah Th]
CalBandGreat raises to 360
smokkee calls 360

*** FLOP *** [2h 7h As]
CalBandGreat checks
smokkee bets 600
CalBandGreat calls 600

*** TURN *** [2h 7h As] [5c]
CalBandGreat checks
smokkee bets 1,395, and is all in
CalBandGreat calls 1,395
smokkee shows [Ah Th]
CalBandGreat shows [Ad 4d]

*** RIVER *** [2h 7h As 5c] [3d]
smokkee shows a pair of Aces
CalBandGreat shows a straight, Five high
CalBandGreat wins the pot (4,890) with a straight, Five high


9:12 PM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

That is sick, Smoke. I saw you in there and I watched you for a while while I was ripping shit up at my own table, but believe me after this redickulous AA loss to KK, I closed out and had to go pound some beers for an hour or two before I could even get back on line. What a sick, sick beat. At least in your case it's a 7-outer, in that he could have hit one of three 4s or four 3s to take that pot. Not that a 7-outer is cool in any way, don't get me wrong, but 7-to-1 is a far cry different from 49-to-1. That's seven times more likely to hit than what happened to me in that phucking 400k. I'm still nauseous just thinking about it and reviewing the screen shots.

9:16 PM  
Blogger smokkee said...

take another look. it's a 5 outer Hoy. the 3h and 4h are no good. they give me the nut flush.

still ur beat is way worse.

10:05 PM  
Blogger StB said...

A one outer takes a lot of jumping jacks to get the marbles back down where they belong after the swift kick.

10:29 PM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

My bad, Smoke. Either way we both took severe junk kickings to get busted early from that thing. It's enough to make me not want to play in it anymore for a while (not that I'm usually able to anyways). The worst part like I said is that I tilted off a massive part of my roll basically on purpose after that King hit on the river. Un real.

10:51 PM  
Blogger Nabomb said...


Sorry to hear about that, that truly truly truly sucks.

You actaully seemed to be playing pretty solid at our cash game and were very civil in the chat which is a testament to your character given the circumstances.

I've had a couple similar sessions tilting off major portions of just sucks. All you can do is learn from it, tell yourself it won't happen again to the same extent anyway and get back on the horse. Give yourself a couple weeks and I'm sure you'll be posting on here about satelliting into FTOPS.

11:05 PM  
Blogger Nabomb said...

Or better yet winning one of the events.

11:06 PM  
Blogger WindBreak247 said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

11:15 PM  
Blogger WindBreak247 said...

Sorry to hear about the bad luck. I've been one outered once in my poker playing days. But here's the encouraging part...I couldn't tell you the story, because I've forgotten the details of the hand. In time, your wound, too, will heal.

Best of luck throughout the rest of the week in your pursuit of the FTOPS.

11:18 PM  
Blogger Goat said...

Just filthy, Hoy. You have my most sincere condolences.

You'll never forget that beat, given how well you laid the trap and the stakes involved.

I think it's time to devise an equation for Bad Beat pain.

11:46 PM  
Blogger oossuuu754 said...

Man I must really suck, I catch you on the worst tilt day of you life, and at the time of day when you should have been passed out (if you drank as much you said you were going too) and you still manage to flop a boat against me in HU token race. God I suck at those things.

3:03 AM  
Blogger Blinders said...

You tilt too easy. The low variance style is for you. Trust me.

3:58 AM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

No doubt I tilt too easy. It's a matter of constant focus and attempt to improve for me, but I clearly have a lot of room left to go. Normally a single bad beat would not have the ability to send me off the deep end like this, but I think it was the 1-outer combined with the fact that I was going to be in 2nd place and on my way to winning 75 grand that did me in. No excuse, just an explanation.

4:13 AM  
Blogger T0mmy2T0ne said...

man that kockbite and his kings... Lol, secretly between u and me thats my 2nd acct I just started up a bit ago while I was on my pokah sabatical.... Sorry I didn't win with all them chips of urs :)

Naw man, that sucks. Harsh..

But I really just came by right now to guarrantee a win tonight at the hoy. And a big middle finger to one Smokkee Whinesalot. LOL j/k there too udaman SMOKE!

Good Day!

6:11 AM  
Blogger Donkeypuncher said...

Thanks for hosting, Hoy. I dedicated my last post to you.

10:58 AM  
Blogger Scots_Chris said...

Thanks for hosting the Hoy tonight! My first Hoy play and my first Hoy win! Awesome. I look forward to playing with all you excellent people again soon.

12:36 PM  

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