The Poker Bookie

A journal dedicated to my exploits into Poker, Sports Betting, and Thoroughbred Racing

Location: Bloomington, Illinois, United States

Friday, December 26, 2008

Don't play on Bodog

Just a quick post to let everyone know that I am no longer affiliated with Bodog. I would not recommend that anyone play on that site anymore. Just a lot of horror stories with cashout. What's the point of winning if you can get your money out.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Huge Overlay on Bodog!

It's been a while since I have posted on this blog but I know that I am still getting some visitors according to my blog traffic report.

The reason for this entry is to tell you about Bodog Poker. They are one of the few remaining sites that will cater to US customers after the fallout from the UIGEA bill and the Neteller debacle.

Here's why you should be playing at Bodog. I requested a payout last week through Western Union and I had my control # within 24 hours. I went to the nearest Kroger and took the much for the end of poker!!

Secondly, Bodog is running some tournaments with huge guarantees that are having overlays every night. I want you all to check out their Tuesday and Wednesday 50K guaranteed tournament at 8:30 PM. It is a $50+$5 buy-in and I guarantee that there will be a juicy overlay.

Click on my link on the left if you don't already have a Bodog account. Otherwise, see you at the table....

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

This thing still work???

I got an email today with a summary of traffic to this little blog of mine. I normally just delete those things but I was curious to see whether I had anyone still visiting and I was surprised to see that there is still a trickle of traffic visiting.

The reason that I haven't been updating is that poker has been depressing lately. You would think that I would be winning more after finishing both volumes of Harrington on Hold'em but that has not been the case. Fortunately, it hasn't been a bloodbath either. I am just treading water but that is no fun when you are used to cashing for big money consistently. It's gotten so bad lately that I have even considered signing up for a poker training site. I haven't done it yet because I am not sure what kind of training I can get to cure people hitting miracle one outers and runner runners on me.

On a personal note, big changes are happening. I got a promotion at my job.....great news! But we have to relocate to Illinois.....not so great news anymore. We have been busy lately with getting our house ready to put on the market and house hunting for a new home in Illinois. I feel like I am stuck on one of those reality shows on the A&E network.

Monday, February 13, 2006


It took awhile but it finally happened yesterday. I won a big multi for a $3200 payday. This win was long overdue and it definitely helped restore my confidence. The most amazing thing is that I lost a coinflip with AK vs JJ in this tourney for almost all of my money in the middle stage of this tourney. I barely had enough to post the blinds, but I caught a few hands and cruised to the final table.

Earlier in the day, my wife made her first final table playing as Pokerescape on FullTilt. It was so fun to watch her work her way up the prize ladder. I was so proud of the way she played and it made me feel good that all those hours of watching me play was finally paying off. She didn't win the tourney, but she got 3rd place. The $450 prize will go toward some nice shoes I am sure.

Maybe I should start a poker coaching service. Earlier in the month, my brother in law also won a multi table tournament. Although it was only a $5 tourney, it was also a pretty nice payday. He was fearless at the final table and there was no way he was going to fall short. Now if I can just coach him to become less tilt-prone, he will be a great player.

Nothing too exciting to report from a travel perspective. Our trip to Albany is going to push back to March. With the severe snowstorms up north, we really didn't want to find ourselves stranded at some airport.

Time to get back to the tables!

Monday, January 30, 2006

A January to Forget

Poker has been depressing lately. That's always the case when you are running bad. You almost feel like the poker gods are out to test you. I have lost every possible way the last 3 weeks. It's been sickening at times because I can actually call out the flop or the river before it gets dealt. Thank goodness for the $2000 that I won in the first couple days of January or this month would be even uglier.

Nonetheless, January is going to be a losing month and ending my streak of continuous winning months. When it's all said and done, I will be down about 2K for the month. It's been so painful I have avoided looking at my running total on the Excel spreadsheet that I keep. Taking into account the great start to the month, it's been a $4000 downswing since then. I hope the tide turns soon. The only positive that I can take from this is that I am still getting my money in when I have the best hand. Once the money goes in the middle, it's all up to the poker gods and to probabilities. Here's to hoping that probabilities prevail!

January has been disappointing in other ways. The World Series of Poker Circuit and the World Poker Tour were both in full swing in Tunica, Mississippi this month. I was hoping to go and play at least a couple of the preliminary events, but that didn't happen. Tunica is the closest place to Atlanta for some live poker for me. It doesn't bode well for my goals of playing more live tournaments this year if I can't even make it to Tunica.

Outside of poker, we only took one vacation this month. My brother rented a cabin in the North Georgia mountains....actually he rented a mansion log home. The place was incredibly nice. We got to spend one weekend there and recharge. My only complaint was that I was not able to get an internet connection.

My goals for February is to get back on the winning track. I am starting on Harrington on Holdem Volume II. You will find me on FullTilt playing the lower limit SNGs for the next couple of weeks until I can rebuild my bankroll.

Vacation plans for February: visit the in-laws in Albany, NY.

Friday, January 06, 2006

2005 Reflection and 2006 Poker Goals

Looking back at 2005, I think I did alright for myself as a poker player, but I think there was definitely some room for improvement. I started the year playing mostly $20 sit and go with a few MTTs in the $10-50 range. By the end of the year, I was regularly playing $50 sit and go with a few shots at the higher limits. I also had a lot of success in the last 3 months of the year on the MTTs on Full Tilt Poker. I must have had over 15 cashes for more than $1000 each in the last quarter of the year. This is a drastic improvement from the beginning of the year when I would struggle to just make the bubble in the MTTs.

I can definitely say that my game has improved over the course of the year. Much of this has come with experience and playing 2-3 hours per night. However, I also spent a lot of time studying the game. I read a lot of the poker books, magazines, and poker forums .....basically anything that I could get my hands on that was poker related. In that regard, I achieve my goals for the year.

One thing that I wanted to do this past year was to satellite my way into a major tournament. On that aspect, I failed. I just didn't take many shots at those satellites. For the first half of the year, I was cashing out most of my winnings to pay for various things associated with buying a new house. I also stayed away from the highest level MTTs in order to protect my bankroll. However, as well as I was playing, I should have definitely taken more shots. It was hard to read the forums on Monday morning and see the same group of players do so well in the Sunday big tourneys.

My poker goals for 2006:

* Continue to improve my game and learn new advanced concepts.
* Continue to have fun playing the game
* Make more money this year than I did last year - as a matter of fact, I want to make more money playing poker this year than I make at my current job. I have a pretty good paying job so this will be a challenging goal to meet but it will keep me motivated. Although I currently enjoy what I am doing, I would be lying if I said I would rather work than play poker professionally. At this point, I am no where near good enough to go pro, but I want to build a little nest egg and see where this poker thing goes in the next couple of years. Is the poker bubble going to bust? I doubt it, but I won't leave my secure job for something that may not be here a couple of years down the road. It would be nice to make a score in one of the Sunday tournament so that I can buy some investments that will generate some residual income to subsidize my poker earnings.
* Play a WSOP or WPT event. Although I would like to play one of the 10K event, that will be unlikely unless I win a satellite. I promise myself that I will try harder this year, but I will not jeopardize my bankroll by buying in directly.
* Graduate to the $100 level for sit and go. I have experimented at this level and have had some success. I haven't been able to justify the variance, but I am planning on keeping a bankroll large enough to be playing at this level sometimes this year.
* Cash in a MTT for more than $10,000. To date, my biggest cash is a little less than $5000.

So far 2006 is off to a good start, I won my first MTT of the year last night. It was a $50 MTT on Full Tilt. There was only 80 players so I cashed for $1280. Hopefully this is the first of many MTT wins this year.

Good luck at the tables!

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

We are Back!

My body is back in Georgia and back to the office grind, but my mind and spirit is still in Vegas!

We had a great time there ringing in the New Year. Although I am a little lighter in the wallet, I would definitely do it all over again. I am going to try to give a brief trip report focusing on poker. Although this is not a bad beat blog and I hate to recount bad beats, you will notice a trend if you continue reading. OK that's the on at your own peril.

Our flight on Delta was packed like a box of sardines. Other than having to endure a pack of giggling school girls sitting right behind us and a crying baby in front of us, the flight was pretty uneventful. After 4 hours, we got into Vegas at 9:30 local time. I decided to take a cab instead of fighting the lines for the shuttle bus. It cost $25 to get from the airport to the Riviera.

We checked in to the Riviera and were not very impressed with our "deluxe" room. Although it was already 1:00 AM eastern time for us, we couldn't just go to bed. This is Vegas after all so we decided to check out the casino. I passed by the poker room and it was very small. They only had 3 tables going and no tournaments. We proceeded to play some blackjack. We both won about $150 in less than 30 minutes. My wife was smart enough to keep her winning, but I decided to give mine back to the craps table. Now that I got that out of the way, we are finally ready for bed. Not so fast....on our walk back to the room, my wife puts a couple of dollars into the slot machine and hits for another $200. I think I found my lucky charm!

We get up bright and early on New Year's Eve. The plan is to walk to all the casinos up the strip and play a little blackjack at each stop. It was a cool day and perfect weather to do some people watching. The same trend continues for me....I lose while the wife continues to win. When we got to the Mirage, I found that they were running continuous sit and go. This was my first chance to play some live poker this trip so I sat down in a $60+10 table that paid 80% for 1st and 20% for 2nd.

The play was pretty weak and I quickly took control of the table. After about an hour and a half, we were heads-up and I had a 2 to 1 chip lead. My AQ ran into AK and now we were about even in chips. I still felt pretty confident as the other player was not challenging my raises. Everything was going my way until they switched dealers. We see a flop with me holding A4. The flop comes Q42. My opponent checks at the pot and I move all in on her pretty certain that she didn't have the Q and would have to fold. Actually I said "all-in". Without waiting for the player to respond to my all-in bet, the dealer deals a 7 for the turn card. She said that she didn't hear me.....are you kidding me??? Now I am stuck in a hard place, there are 2 overcards to my pair of 4's but I have to continue with my all-in bluff to have any chance at winning the pot. My opponent happily calls with the hammer "7-2". To make it enough worse, she confesses that she would have folded to my all-in bet on the flop. So instead of winning $420 for 1st, I have to settle for $180 for the second place finish. I really like this poker room and there was quite a bit of action. It didn't take very long for the sit and go to fill. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to get back to this room prior to leaving.

After ringing in the New Year on the strip, we wake up on New Year Day and pack up to move to the Monte Carlo Hotel and Casino for the remaining two days. The room here was much nicer but that was to be expected. Our next stop after checking in was the Aladdin since I had heard that they run sit and go all day on Sunday. I was not disappointed as the room was very nice and the staff was friendly. I sat down at one table $55 sit and go. Lot of pocket aces were being dealt, but I didn't get any of them. I think I busted out in 6th when I tried to semi-bluff with middle pair and ran into top pair. Although I would have liked to play more than one, we had to leave for dinner reservation at the Monte Carlo. There would be no more poker on this day.

On Monday, my last full day in Vegas, I told my wife that I wanted to enter some of the multi table tourneys. My first one was at the Monte Carlo at 9:00 AM. This was a $40 buy-in and it only drew about 30 people with top 3 making the money. We each started with 1000 chips and the blinds went up pretty quickly. After an hour, we were down to the final 9 players. The blinds drove the action and we were quickly down to 5 players. I was the short stack when I pick up pocket jacks on the big blind. I was more than happy to call when the small blind moved in on me. I wasn't so happy when he turned over KQ because I knew we would be racing. He managed to hit both his K and his Q to send me packing in 5th place. I had a real shot at 1st if my jacks could have held up.

After lunch, we went back to the Aladdin so that I could play the 1:00 PM $60 with one $40 rebuy. We each started with 2000 chips and I immediately took the rebuy for an additional 2000 chips. Some donk promptly gave me all of chips when he tried to move me off my pocket 10's with his A4 offsuit. I won a couple of smaller pots and was quickly chip leader at my table with over 7000. Then this hand happened. I find pocket KK and make it 500 with the blinds at 100-200. I get re-raised to 1000. I got the feeling that the guy was just tired of me picking up pots and wanted to catch me stealing or wanted to slow me down. I decided to push all in. I thought that he may read me for a steal and maybe call. Well I was right, he did call with the only hand that I didn't want him to....pocket aces. Now I am doing to under 2000 and I can't take another rebuy since you are limited to only one.

A few hands later, I am on the button with AQ suited. There are 3 limpers to me and about 900 in the pot. I decided to push all -in. I am called by the same guy who had aces against me earlier. This time, he has my KK and I get no help on the board. Game over. That was all the poker that I played on this trip. I didn't do as well as I would have liked but I had a lot of fun and it was nice to hold some real cards for a change.

Now that I am home, I will soon make some 2006 poker goals and get serious again. I have some big plans this year. Check back soon for that entry.