Sunday, October 31, 2004


Some Gambling and Poker News

Bettors are risking millions the outcome of the presidential election.

This is interesting to me, because in my mind there's a lot more riding on this presidential election than millions of dollars. There are lives at stake in Iraq. There are civil liberties at stake here at home. The environment is in constant danger.

There's an interesting article about students not needing campus jobs because they're making money playing poker in the Harvard school paper.

There were some big poker games going on when I was in the dorms in the late 80's and the early 90's too. I don't remember there being a lot of press about how dangerous gambling and poker are to our youth back then, but maybe that's because there wasn't a bunch of televised poker going on in those days. It's funny to think that the sports betting industry is so huge, but since the government continues its gambling prohibition almost everywhere, the only people profiting from sports betting are involved in organized crime, at least on some level.


The Difference Between Party Poker's $25 No Limit Tables and Party Poker's $100 Pot Limit Tables

At first I thought the difference between Party's $25 no limit tables and their $100 pot limit tables was about $20 per hour, because that's what I win, on average, at the $25 no limit tables. (So far anyway--believe me, I don't have great records or tons of data yet.) And I lose at the $100 pot limit tables. (At least so far--again--I don't have enough data.)

But to calculate the real difference, I have to calculate how much I lose at the pot limit tables and add that to the difference. That makes the picture much different. I only played about 5 hours at the pot limit table, but I probably lost $500 or so. That's $100 per hour.

So the real difference between the $25 no limit tables and the $100 pot limit tables at Party, for me anyway, is about $120 per hour.

Saturday, October 30, 2004


SportingBet buys Paradise Poker & Other Poker News

Poker's such big business now that poker companies are actually being bought and sold. SportingBet just bought Paradise Poker for $297 million.


Poker Conversation

This is a transcript of an actual poker conversation I had recently.

T - Man, I'm going to play poker all weekend.

Me - Yeah?

T - Yeah. And I'm going to play hard too.

Me - (Pause)

T- Are you going to play this weekend?

Me - Yeah. I'll probably play a little.

T- Are you going to play hard?

Me - Hell yeah.

T- Man--I've been winning about $50 per hour on Party Poker lately at the pot limit tables.

Me- Yeah--I've done allright for the past couple of days. Maybe $40 an hour.

A few hours after this conversation, I went on tilt and dropped about $400. One of the first times I'd ever been on tilt that I know of, and the funny thing about it is that I didn't even realize I was on tilt til I lost a bunch of money and quit and thought about it.

My new goal is to be like David Sklansky. He never tilts.

Real People, Real Poker, Real Time...Crazy Vegas Poker

Wednesday, October 27, 2004


Poker at the Monte Carlo in Las Vegas

I know I was supposed to write about my experiences in the different Vegas casinos already, and I know I'm only now getting around to it, and I'm sorry. But here goes.

Poker at the Monte Carlo was nice. The poker room was intimate and classy without feeling crowded. The staff running the place were very nice, and the cocktail waitresses were appropriately busty. (I like busty cocktail waitresses when I play poker. I probably shouldn't worry about that, but I do.)

The game there was also surprisingly soft. I played limit hold em there, and I don't remember the stakes, although I think it was $2/$4. But I remember that I did very well, and that I left after maybe 3 or 4 hours winning about $100. The Monte Carlo poker room was about as nice a poker room as I played in while I was in Vegas. I thought it was as nice as the Bellagio poker room, even if it did lack the famous players and the big high roller room.

And it was a lot less crowded than the Bellagio room. I'm a big guy, over 400 pounds in fact, and I hate crowded poker rooms.


Phil Hellmuth Jr. Interview

No, I didn't get to interview Phil Hellmuth. But I did read an interesting little interview with Phil Hellmuth and wanted to share the link here. Evidently he's promoting a new book about bad beats and stuff. (Interestingly enough though, one of the surgeons who performed open heart surgery on my dad saw that I was reading Phill Hellmuth's first book, Play Poker Like the Pros, and mentioned that his father-in-law played professional poker, and he had actually met Phil Hellmuth. I got the impression he wasn't too impressed, but who knows.)

Anyway, here's the Phill Hellmuth Interview. And for those of you out there who don't like him, I don't really care. I think he's funny as hell. I've got a buddy who's a webmaster who has a very strong resemblance to Phil, and he was a lot of fun over drinks and taught me a lot about search engine optimization. Kevin, if you're reading this, you know that I'm talking about you.

Ultimate Bet


More on the Richardson Poker Room Bust

I wrote about the poker room in Richardson getting busted by the police the other day, but I found another article about it on another blog. Pokerati's article on the Richardson bust is available here, and he prints the email letter that we all received. And here's the link to my original article about the Richardson, TX poker room bust too.

I'd just like to say that I agree with Dan about this place having the best food in town for a poker player like me. The meatball subs on Friday nights were terrific. And quite frankly, the guys running the place were really cool to me every time I was there, and made me feel really welcome.

I don't know anything else about this event, but it was a disappointment, to say the least.


Stu Ungar Movie - High Roller: The Stu Ungar Story

Originally titled "Stuey", "High Roller - The Stu Ungar Story" is a movie about Stu Ungar's life. I didn't even realize they had made a movie about Stu Ungar until the other day when I was surfing a discussion board and someone mentioned it there. Anyway--I love the movie's tag line: "Gambler. Addict. Loser. Legend."

A.W. Vidmer won the best director award at the San Diego Film Festival for this movie. As near as I can tell, the movie has not been released to the general public yet, and it has only been showing at film festivals. I'm hoping it will be released soon, because I'd like to see it.

Here are a couple of links: Stu Ungar Movie Official Site and Rotten Tomatoes Stu Ungar Movie Page. And I wrote an article about Stu Ungar here.

Absolute Poker whenever where ever

Saturday, October 23, 2004


Richardson, TX Police Raid Poker Club

A poker club in Richardson, TX is now closed until further notice. The club was raided by the Richardson police on the night of October 20. From what I understand (I wasn't there) nothing really happened to any of the players, but the same can't be said for the gentlemen who ran the club. The Richardson police confiscated all the poker chips, the poker tables, and the playing cards. The owners of the club are waiting for a court date to see what they're going to be charged with.

Saturday, October 16, 2004


Hoyt Corkins - Poker Player Hoyt Corkins

His name is Hoyt Corkins, and he is a rancher. (With a name like Hoyt, really the only other profession he could have would be a poker player or a country music singer.) But come to think of it, Hoyt Corkins is also a well respected and aggressive poker player. Phil Hellmuth Jr. called him "Mr. All-In", which he meant in a derogatory way, but I don't think anyone else has taken in that way. In fact, from what I can tell from the other articles I saw on this guy on the other websites, everyone thinks of that "Mr. All-In" moniker as a term of respect and possibly even endearment.

From what I've read on some other sites, Hoyt Corkins is one of those old school gentlemen who you can't even provoke into saying something bad about someone else, not even Phil Hellmuth. This is the biggest thing that impressed me about him. (That and the big black cowboy hat--I just love that whole cowboy hat and sunglasses look he's got going on.) On a side note, it's almost fashionable to dislike Phil Hellmuth Jr. I guess I go against the grain, because I like him very much, and even liked his book, Play Poker Like the Pros.

Anyway--Hoyt Corkins is my kind of poker player. I admire aggression, and I admire big black cowboy hats too, although I haven't worn a cowboy hat myself since I was in my early teens. (And I mean early, like 13 or so...)

Ultimate Bet

Here are some more articles about Hoyt Corkins:

Friday, October 15, 2004


Doyle Brunson and Me

Doyle Brunson is arguably the most famous poker player alive today. (With the possible exceptions of Amarillo Slim, or Chris Moneymaker, or Greg Raymer. And I guess Gabe Kaplan is pretty famous too, or at least he used to be, but he's famous for more than just being a poker player. I digress.) I have a special place in my heart because Doyle Brunson and I have a few things in common.

Doyle Brunson is a big man. Tall and a little bit overweight. (Much like myself.) But he's not just physically big. He's also a big player and a big name. He's contributed as much if not more to the game of poker than just about anyone else living. If the only thing he'd ever accomplished was the publication of Super/System, that would probably still be enough to earn him a place in poker's hall of fame.

Like me, Doyle Brunson is from Texas. Unlike me, he was quite an athlete growing up--he played lots of different sports. Basketball, baseball, track. Heck, he was such a good basketball player that he was drafted by the Laker's. A knee injury ended his professional career as an athlete though. (Unlike Brunson, I've never had a career as an athlete, but I do have a bit of arthritis in my right knee.)

Another big difference between me and Doyle Brunson is our level of play. Doyle's a legendary poker player. He's won at least nine gold bracelets at the World Series of Poker; I've never even played in the World Series of Poker. Another cool fact about him: he has a hand named after him. A "Doyle Brunson" is a T2.

Ultimate Bet

You can read more about him here:

Doyle Brunson Biography and Interview at PokerPages

Doyle Brunson Bio at Poker Babes

Doyle Brunson's Super/System

Sunday, October 10, 2004


Poker Hobgoblins and Ben Affleck

"Trick or Treat! We're the Poker Hobgoblins!"

My god but this article made me laugh. I'd love to see my kids want to dress up as famous poker players for Halloween.

I saw another article today about Ben Affleck being on the cover of All In magazine. My aunt brought me a copy of the magazine when she was in Vegas this year. She was there visiting her son, but the WSOP was going on at the same time, so she picked up a copy for me. I thought I'd heard a rumor that the magazine was already in financial trouble, but I can't imagine that's true, considering poker's tremendous popularity right now.

One of the things that I like about Ben Affleck, aside from him being a poker player, is that he's not only a handsome guy, but he's thoroughly likeable too. I could easily see hanging out with him and having a beer and shooting the breeze. From what I understand, he's one of these really good celebrity players too.

I've been playing a lot at Party Poker lately. It's funny though--seems like every time I sit down at a table, it gets really tight really fast. And I'm not playing really high stakes at all; I'm just playing $2/$4 limit holdem.

I was coming up really high in Google for Clonie Gowen until recently. I'm like any other webmaster, I guess, even poker webmasters need traffic. And I was really pleased I was getting between 3 and 5 visitors a day who were searching for her name. But now I'm nowhere to be found for that term any more.

Not much else to report today. I'm doing well at Party's $2/$4 tables lately, and will probably swing by there tonight to play a bit more.

Ultimate Bet

Saturday, October 09, 2004


Poker at the Excalibur Casino in Las Vegas

I haven't written latey because I've been in Las Vegas for the Casino Affiliate Convention. While I was there, I played a lot of poker in the cardrooms at the casinos there. I'm going to write about each cardroom and experience separately, and I'm going to start with my experience playing poker at the Excalibur Casino.

I arrived in Vegas at 9am at the Boardwalk on the strip. They wouldn't let me check in early because they didn't have my room ready yet. So I walked over to the Excalibur to check out their poker room and play a little poker. I was hoping to play $1/$2, but the only table where they had an open seat was at a $2/$6 spread limit Texas Holdem table. It was full of a bunch of older men.

I wound up playing until about 4pm in the afternoon at the same table with the same old guys. We occasionally had people sit down and get up and leave, but the core of the table were these same six fellows.

Ultimate Bet

At the end of my 7 hours of play, after tipping the dealer and the cocktail waitresses multiple times, I was only down $20. I started talking with a railbird when I finished playing, and he explained to me that I'd been playing at the table with all the local regulars--apparently they play poker every day at the Excalibur at that table, and most of them play really tight and really well. He said that having only lost $20 for 7 hours with those guys was actually pretty darn good.

I did overhear one of the players muttering to another player that I never had the hole cards they expected me to have when we got to the occasional showdown. I think that's a good thing.

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