Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Back to my roots - a min cash at the $100K on Bodog - 2010-08-01 recap

I can't let PokerGrump take all of the money on Bodog's overlaid tournaments.  I've been looking for awhile to [re-]start a bankroll there; it was Bodog that started my online poker addiction career.  Back in March of 2007, I had deposited $50 and was able to play with it for 6-8 months before going busto.  After busto, the credit card companies denied new deposits and I sort of gave up on Bodog.  Well, a few months ago, they sent me an email offering me $10 free in casino chips to try out there casino with the catch that I had to place 100 bets in order to request a check / use the money in other areas of their system (i.e. poker).  I was able to convert the $10 to a $15 bankroll, and immediately proceeded to donk it off at the .02/.05 poker tables.  Crappy, yes, but oh well - it doesn't feel good to lose your puny BR at the micro stakes :-(.  I then tried to swap money with a fellow blogger, but Bodog doesn't allow player to player transfers.  Long story short: I gave up.

Fast forward to 4 days ago and you can imagine my surprise when I got an email from Bodog offering me a complimentary $215 + $12 ticket to their $100K Guaranteed tournament.  It's interesting that they offer me $10 in gambling casino chips, and now offer me a $227 tournament entry(?!?!).  I'd take the cash any day of the week, but whatever.  I'll take a shot.  After checking it out with the wife, I registered and waited for Sunday 4pm to roll around so that I can take my shot at getting a real bankroll.  Quick aside: I had read previously that Bodog's player base was very weak, so I see an opportunity there, if only I can get a bankroll where I can sustain the ups & downs.  Starting out, my goal for the tournament [obviously] was to win the thing; the structure was such that first prize would get 25% of the $100K.  However, as a default position, I wanted to do no less than min cash, thus giving me the bankroll I desired.  A min cash would work out to .3% - $300 for 63rd place.

As I said, the tournament started at 4pm, though I didn't really get serious about it until 6:00PM - my stack was up & down, and the play was proven to be absolutely atrocious.  If you've been reading this blog long enough, you know that I'm a 98% cash player; I'm not sure whether this is standard for $227 Sunday majors tournaments.  For example, people were putting stacks on the line post-flop with AK high, or calling all-ins with gutshot draws (and they all seemed to be hitting & sucking out).  I knew if I got a hand or two, I would be able to at least cash this sucker.

WARNING: No hand converters, so HH suck!  I'm going to try to detail most hands, but I'm kinda lazy!

Early, I wound up doubling through a flush draw against my flopped boat...  the players were chatting "vnh," "nh," etc...  Really?  I'm playing like 10% of my hands and I call all-in and you think I played it well?

Anyway, I'm sitting on a mid stack at around 6:50PM when the following comes up:

ThTs in SB with 300/600 blinds & 60 antes.  I'm sitting on a short 17K stack and donk is sitting on 25K.  This is a pretty dicey situation, as I can seriously hurt donk's stack if he loses, but I will absolutely go out of the tourney if I lose...  Donk raises to 1325 from BTN; he'd been stealing and very active.  I re-pop him (first time I'd 3 bet) to 5K.  That's a pretty good indication that I'm not going to fold when I have 1/3 of my stack in there already.  He 4bets me to 15K and I ship for the last 2K.  He shows up with AcKd so we're off to the races.  Now, as I said earlier, I'm not a tourney pro by ANY stretch, but against a tight opponent, if you're the donk, aren't you flatting against my FIRST 3 bet?  At best, you're 50/50, and at worst you're FAR behind.  I have to imagine I'm flatting there...  Anyway, I fade a 9 2 J Q 2 board to win a huge (relative) pot.

From that point on, I had garbage on top of garbage, and my table consisted of 3 of the top 10 big stacks with 120 runners left...  I sat in 27th place, FYI, after the hand.  When I mean garbage, this kinda crap was typical:

The sum total of runners was 593 players, leaving a nice overlay to the tournament that was free to begin with :-).  For the next few hours, I had to sit idly watching big stacks battle each other and throw all in with gambles -  it’s to the point where it’s humorous.  The play here is simply atrocious.  They're 100BB+ deep and getting all in PF with AK vs. 55 or whatever...  I’ve stolen a few times, but haven’t had the gall to re-steal against those stealing on me.  BTW, I hate the fact that I can’t get a HUD with Bodog tournaments.

I work up the courage to start opening my game, because I'm not getting any traction...  I steal in early position with the best hand I've seen since the TT hand (30 minutes ago):
And it works!  I move up to 25th place!

3 minutes later, I get involved with a really weird hand with a player who had been incredibly active - raising nearly every hand.  The quick of it is that I have 34K to his 57.5K stack.  Antes are 500/1K & blinds are 100.  I am dealt Ah2h in SB (once again) and decide to defend his EP raise to 3K.  We see a flop of Kc4cAc.  I check call a bet of 6K, leaving me 25K.  The next card is a Kh and we check through the turn.  Finally, Js is dealt on the river and I check to weirdo who leads for 19.9K(!!!?!??!?!?).  Given his check through the turn, I have trouble buying that he has an Ace or King - he's polarized to monsters / air.  [I probably shouldn't have] but I check / raise all in for the remaining 25K and he SNAP folds... I mean so fast he didn't even wait for my bet to hit the table...  Just weird, but I win a 60K pot!  I am now in 4th place out of 110 runners!  With the blinds and bubble approaching, stacks are moving fast.

I [unsuccessfully] try opening my game up but fail miserably.  After chipping down a bit, I steal with A8o and get into a little mix with a big stack:

I have 49K and big stack has 73.5K... 500/1000 blinds and 100 antes still.  It's 7:30PM. (WHEW!  A lot happened in a short amount of time!)  I am dealt A9o in the UT+1 and raise 3.5K where big stack calls in the BB.  Flop is 2c7h6c and we check through.  The turn is Ks and I lead for 6K and illicit a fold, taking a decent pot.

Then, I get involved in a 3-way pot which was somewhat of a cooler (600/1200 blinds and 120 antes):
I have Ah4h and call in EP for 1200.  CO calls as well, but BTN short stack open shoves 7.6K.  I flat and BTN flats behind.  I considered raising there, but I wanted to keep it light with BTN because he's sitting on 78.5K vs. my 46K.  Flop comes 4s9s6c and I lead 8400 and get a call from BTN.  Turn is a beauty: Ac.  Since the pot is now well above my stack (41K), I bet 22K hoping for commitment but he folds.  The BTN has 4c4d for the flopped set - CRAP so I wind up breaking even on the hand with a $17K side pot win.

7:40PM: I'm in 26th place out of 84 left.  63 paying!

7:45PM: I lose a decent pot where I whiff entirely.  Starting stack of 42K and ending stack of 34K.

7:47PM: The poker Gods love me!  If I had been thinking about this, I should have flatted, but whatever:
I have AcKc in UTG+1 and a 27.5K stack vs. my very active player's EP1 27.5K stack.  Blinds are still 600/1200 with 120 antes.  I raise to 3.6K and am 3bet to 10.8K.  Folds around to me where I shove the remaining 24K and am called to see QcQd - a race.

Ace in the window and I'm back in solid footing.  20th place with 77 remaining.  14 more until the money and I start folding my way into the money.  Remember: I want to get a bankroll, first & foremost, but I would love to take this sucker down.

After 13 more minutes of nothing-ness, I blind down as we break at 8:00PM and I sit in 39th place after having lost a 44 vs. QQ 13.5K pot.  66 remain and the money jumps from a min cash of $300 to $600 at 27th place.  Since there is such a gap and delay between money jumps, once we’re in the money, my plan is to start getting aggressive.  I’m hoping for 3 quick bust outs immediately following the break so that I can start aggro-ing it up.  I'm already getting flack from my wife because she has taken the kids out to dinner without me.  It sucks being tied to the computer this late at night, but the tournament started at 4:00PM…  4 HOURS of poker straight!  My donk-cash game playing self isn't used to playing 1 table, 4 hours.  Earlier, to begin the tournament, I was 3 tabling on my Full Tilt account while playing Bodog - continuing to work off the mid-year bonus allotted to me, but once I started getting deeper in this tournament, I decided to focus my full attention on the HUD-less Bodog windows.

While we’re on break, I’ll tell you that I do not recommend the Bodog software at all.  This has to be the clunkiest piece of trash in the universe of online poker…  The lobbies are cumbersome, the settings for the windows are not nearly as configurable as the big 2 (PokerStars & Full Tilt), and the Hand Histories are un-retrievable in a standard format (my apologies for the above BS retelling of the hands).  Finally, you actually have to pay close attention to the tables because there aren't any tools to enable HEM or PT3 to display a HUD.  Apparently, the lack of HUD is solely for Bodog tournaments - when I played in the cash games previously, I was able to use a hand converter to basically screen scrape the Bodog windows and pipe them into usable text files for HEM processing.  With all it's faults, though, the one HUGE plus that Bodog does feature is apparently its player base, as I said before.  If I can min cash here for as TERRIBLE of tournament player as I am, the player base must truly stink!  Whatever, we’re coming off break, so here goes the money!

8:08PM: I get a BB special to pad my stack with flopped TP - going for a check raise that never comes to fruition.

8:10PM: 64 left!  We've entered hand-for-hand play.  I'm in 31st place with 35K chips.  Chip lead holds 155K and the average stack is 48K.  One minute later, the bubble bursts and I immediately implement my plan:

8:14PM: I have 3h3d and have a 39K stack vs. an UTG (chip leader) raise to 5K.  Blinds are 1k/2k with 200 antes.  UTG+1 flats with his 26.6K stack.  I auto ship my 39K figuring for a race...  either I chip up nicely into the top ten or I go out to dinner with a new $300 BR.  Either way: win win.  UTG over-shoves his 155K stack and UTG+1 [strangely] CALLS his 26.6K - I don't get that; whatever he has that's NOT AK or QQ+ has to figure to be beat.  Well, the UTG+1 tables 8s8c and the big stack tables AcKh.

Flop is AsKc9s and that's all she wrote; 5h 7d on the turn & river and UTG+1 and I are toast.  GG, Bodog, and thanks for the free tournament!  Given the level of play there, I will definitely be back.  In fact, I think I will start trying to play satellites into these types of overlay tournaments.  The money seems fairly easy, given that I have the time to play it.  In the interim, I definitely want to check out their cash tables.  If the players are anything like what I experienced in the tourney, then I most certainly have an edge.  Couple that with a HUD and I think I'll be rolling in no time.


  1. Good job at the table and nice recap.

  2. I really miss playing in rooms other than FT and PS. I wish I could get $ on Bodog. I can't help but feel like the players on PS and FT are better than most of the smaller sites. After all, sharks don't like small ponds or crappy software (what? I couldn't think of a good analogy for crappy software).

  3. Walgreens sells Gift2go visa gift card (you can find it online too) which you can register online link to your address, and deposit on Bodog. (make sure its a gift card thats accepted 'worldwide'). But you lose $ on the gift card fee.

  4. @Anonymous - Thanks for the input. I got a similar card at the Safeway (local grocery store) by me back in 2007. It's a lot of work to get funds on the site... plus, like you point out, you lose money on the purchase of the gift card in the first place.

    In the coming weeks, I'm going to have a post on Bodog's interface, coupled with IdleMiner's hand grabber.


Blog Archive