Wednesday, March 31, 2010

A Virtual Stack, A Virtual Story. Rush Poker Edition

It's been a couple of months now that Rush Poker on Full Tilt has been available. There have already been many posts by those of us who've tried it, many positive and many negative. Now, lucky reader, you get to hear my take on it.

I enjoy it. Immensely. Here's why.

To me, the most significant advantage of Rush Poker is the constant changing of players and positions for each hand. I'll be honest, for nearly the entirety of 2009, I did not play NLHE cash games online. It was strictly PLO and PLO8 for close to 100,000 hands. I made this decision because of the fact that I had not purchased "HUD" software to assist my play.

(For those of you unaware, HUD or heads-up-display software is used to overlay player statistics over their avatar at an online poker table. These statistics show player tendencies in easy to read formats that show you how tight/aggressive a player is. It essentially allows you to make "reads" based on their behavior. It's a fantastic tool for multi-tablers who are unable to make these reads by paying attention to each table visually.)

I'm on a Mac, and at this time last year, there wasn't a decent way to get the Poker Tracker software running without booting into Windows. I did not by my Macbook Pro to run WinXP, so there was some philosophical opposition that I couldn't get past. Without tracking and HUD software, I truly felt I was at a disadvantage to those who were using it. Therefore, rather than play against players with more information at their disposal about my play, I just chose not to. I understand you can run the same software for PLO and PLO8 but it's not as predominant nor do many people know exactly what to do with player stats in those games.

With Rush Poker, the tracking and "HUD-ing" were all but eliminated. Now people would need to pay attention to the action at the table for a much larger player pool, not just their 5 opponents at a 6-max table. So for a player like myself without the additional software aids, I stood a better chance against my opponents.

I won't even get into the speed of play benefits with this post except to say that with rakeback, two-tabling Rush Poker earns me about $10/hour in rakeback alone. That's not insignificant.

So how have I been running? Like with all forms of poker, hot and cold. I've had 7-10 buy-in upswings and comparable downswings. But every now and then, I'll put together a real good session where I win all my showdowns.

Last night was one of them. KK > 99 in blind vs. blind all-in-pre. Set of 66's > TPTK. AA > KK and AA > QJ on a QT9 flop. That's my story. Here's my stack:

Monday, March 08, 2010

Mastodon / Metal

Let me just say Mastodon Weekend was a resounding success. From Thursday's 5-star dinner at Rick Erwins, to Friday's poker marathon at Azia's, to Saturday's Trivia Contest / Bar Crawl, not a whole helluva lot could have gone any better.

Shout out to the folks who added to the prize pool and paid for the food. Jeff and Nikki - we both know who the poker player among you guys is. :)

(Also - special thanks to the experts who helped my wife's uber-drunk friend into our minivan. All was well by Sunday. Except for the smell...)

I have tons of video to post and hopefully I can put it all together somewhat coherently. In the meantime, I leave you with a Metal Monday video and a snippet from the bar crawl.

This band could easily remind you of some old Pantera. Check out Throwdown's This Continuum:

And lastly, just to show you all how low-brow our humor is at Mastodon, I call this next snippet "Gastodon:"