Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Disappointment Brings Introspection

In this post, I'm just going to ramble around, from subject to subject, on a wide range of poker topics.
I always get introspective when I'm disappointed. Am I the only one? I would suspect everyone is like this, but whenever I jump to such conclusions, I find out that I'm totally wrong, lol.

Anyway, today I'm supposed to be sitting at Bellagio, playing a Stud satellite for tomorrow's event. I'm not there. My diabetes is causing some complications right now, so instead, I'm sitting home reflecting about poker. I tend to think very long and hard about things. I think about my play, others' play, possible hands, fantasy scenarios.
In January, I have two major tournaments to choose from. At Commerce, the LA Poker Classic will be held from January 26 through February 24. There are four Stud events. At the Horseshoe in Tunica, the Jack Binion's Open will be held from January 5 through January 27. There are two Stud events in Tunica. Although they barely overlap, I am still going to LA versus Tunica.

I know that I've said Commerce is a terrible environment to be in, but Carl Frommer told me that the LA Classic is a better festival environment than the State Poker Championship. Probably some of that has to do with stuck players right after the WSOP who are steaming and on the edge.

So why am I choosing LA over Tunica when Tunica is a great, fishy place to play? Well, let's just dissect these two festivals from stem to stern.

The Horseshoe in Tunica was bought by Harrah's. We all know how much Harrah's loves poker (not). We all know how greedy they are. The juice in Tunica was maxed out at 10% in January 2004. Next year, they are adding an additional 3% for the house, and an additional 3% for the state. So the juice is a whopping 16% in the $500 events! Even if you win, you lose.

in January 2004 at the LAPC, the juice was maxed out at 10% for the $300 events, but went down from there, with the championship event being only 2%. In addition, Commerce had many bonuses, which included additional money added to prize pools, guaranteed prizes and best overall player prizes. This January, Commerce is keeping the juice about the same for most events, with the main event having the juice lowered 50%. There are less guarantees, but still added prize money and BOP cash. I have heard that Commerce is going to start charging juice on rebuys, but this still is a much better deal than Tunica.

So there you have it. And where does this conversation lead, other than telling you which event I'm choosing? Well, it leads to a revelation that I consider odd.

On RGP, people are griping about Commerce, while virtually ignoring the juice at the Horseshoe. Somehow the Shoe has been almost completely overlooked. No one is bothering to add up the increase in juice. It seems that only the Brits are truly interested in what is going to happen in Tunica. Over at the Hendon Mob, this is worthy of discussion, while the Yanks continue to line up like lambs for the slaughter in Mississippi. Go figure. To each his own, but I'd rather play four Stud events, and pay my juice of $40/40/60/60, with an additional 50k in BOP awards and a better overlay, than pay $80/80 for only two events, no additional prizes, a flight to Mississippi and no overlay.
Oops, this just in. I went to Commerce's web page and found out that Poker Pages has the listing slightly wrong. For the $300 events, $39 is taken for juice, so that is over 10%. The other events are $485+55, 970+90, 1455+125, 2425+155, 9603+397. While all of these are higher than Poker Pages listed, they also include house gratuities. The rebuys also have juice this year, something virtually unheard of in legitimate tournaments.

I still plan on going to LA, as the juice is less, even with the increases above, I will be able to drive and there is a lot of added/guaranteed money ($1,390,000).
Glenn plays so much at one poker site that he constantly qualifies for their freerolls. They have many per week, and the players are usually abominable. For whatever reason, Glenn has developed a sure-thing strategy that has him in the money about 50% of the time. Jeez, doesn't that seem impossible for a MTT? Mathematically, this shouldn't be happening, yet it does, and over and over again. He has been doing this for many months, and has the same, excellent results over time. Sure, some of the time he is barely in the money, and it is a joke payout, like maybe $1.00 for the last money spot, but still. If I could get in the money 50% of the time in pay tourneys, I'd be the next John Juanda of the poker world.
I've had to cut back my links over the past few months. I hate doing that, it is almost like cutting off a part of myself. Some of the journals are gone. Some are hardly ever updated and simply trailing off. Others combine so much political and off-topic content along with poker that they can't legitimately be called a "poker journal." I hate deleting, yet not adding. I hate to see some of my favorite writers get cut. I read about three times as many journals as the number of links on my site. Some of the journals I love the most are ones I don't feel that I can link.
Harry Demetriou started a poker journal recently. It is some fantastic writing. He can't quite figure out the cut-n-paste, but it is worth it to wade through the errors. A fantastic guy, great player. I seem to have a love affair with Brit players, go figure!
Yesterday someone on 2+2 asked a hypothetical question. I thought it was a no-brainer.

He asked if he wanted to "buy a bracelet" at the WSOP, which would be the best event to enter. Buy-in was of no significance, and his skill level was equal at any poker game.

I was kind of surprised at the answers. Like I said, I assumed it was a no-brainer. So when I didn't see the right answer, I posted it. To my shock, I immediately got responses saying I was wrong. Wow, I really, really thought this was simple!

Glenn asked if I was going to tell them why mine was the right answer, but I said "no." I told him that if they'd asked me, legitimately why I thought my answer was correct, I would tell them, but since they just pounced, then I would let them wallow in their ignorance.

So this morning when I woke up, I got a pleasant surprise. A response from Sklansky was in my e-mail box, saying, "Felicia's Right. It's not even close. Especially if you gamble at the beginning and never stop rebuying."

That felt good, even though I never doubted myself for a second. I had picked 2-7 NL Draw. Since they are doing away with TDL, the natural choice, I had to go with the 2-7. I really never thought anyone would say differently!

Naturally, after David spoke up, some others started replying, "I would pick 2-7," LOL. Baaaaah, sheep!
2+2 is going to start an Internet magazine of essays. I wonder if they'll use any of mine. Jeez, I can't wait to see how I'll be picked apart if they do!

I hope some of the better theory writers submit essays.

(Don't cry if I left your name out of this sentence. I had limited words to connect to links, so I just went straight down my bookmarked list.)
So, I guess today I'm just going to sit around whining about not being at the Five Diamond. I'll probably continue to add to this post off and on, as I think of more rambling and spill my guts.