Thursday, November 19, 2009

I am almost embarrassed to post it...

I decided to play an afternoon session today and I won one of the 7 tourneys I entered for just over $7k. I am obviously running just insanely good lately - whenever I play (which is rarely) I win. I realize the downswing will happen, but riding the upswing sure is nice.

Maybe Belichick's a poker player

On Monday Night Football this week, Coach Bill Belichick's Patriots went for it on 4th and 2 to go with a 6 point lead from their own 28 yard line with just over 2 minutes to play and the Colts left with only one timeout.

For those that don't know football, the situation basically boils down to this. If the Patriots gain 2 or more yards they win the game because the Colts will not be able to stop the clock. If the Patriots don't gain the 2 yards, the Colts get the ball back and only have to go 28 yards to try and get a touchdown to win the game in those last 2 minutes.

The other option for Belichick to have chosen is to punt the ball in which case he guarantees that the Colts will get the ball but they most likely will have to go closer to 60 yards in those last 2 minutes to score a touchdown rather than 30.

For Belichick the decision to go for it blew up in his face. The Patriots failed to convert, the Colts got the ball back and proceeded to score the winning touchdown in dramatic fashion. And the football commentators immediately gave him hell saying it was a retarded decision to go for it and they should have punted.

But according to this nytimes blog Belichick's decision mathematically was correct. The calculation used by this blogger is very similar to EV (expected value) calculations that poker players make all the time. According to the blogger, the EV of going for it was .79 and the EV for punting was .70. So going for it increased the Patriots' chances of winning by around 9%. If this were a poker decision, going for it would expect to gain you more chips and it would be an easy conclusion that going for it was the best play.

A common mantra in the poker world is to "stop being results oriented." A player's natural instinct after losing a big pot or getting busted from a tournament is to go back over the hand and figure out a way that he could have played the hand differently so that the bad outcome would not have happened. E.g. "If I had folded that AQ preflop instead of shoving my last 15 BBs I would not have run into AK and would still have chips left to play." But after playing thousands and thousands of hands, poker players finally begin to understand that as long as you keep making decisions which gain you chips in the long run, then you can shake off the times where those plays lose you chips in the short term on that specific hand.

I think the football world is being results oriented in criticizing Belichick's decision. If his team had converted the 4th down I don't think this controversy is even created. If anything, Belichick would be lauded for being ballsy. Is it common for coaches to go for it on 4th down in that spot? No. Does that mean it was the wrong decision? No.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

I got my lazy ass out today

So I finally got myself out and going early today and went on a 1 1/2 hour bikeride. It was a beautiful fall day and it felt good to be out by the river but man I am out of shape. So it definitely was a good thing to get out and moving. If I actually remember I will try and take the camera with me tomorrow so I can take some photos.

Still just chillin'

I still haven't played an online tourney since I won that UB tourney 2 weeks ago. I just haven't felt the mojo to play, so I'm not going to until I do. So I cleaned the gutters, played some live poker today with my poker group and enjoyed watching one of my online buddies take down the 70k on pokerstars when I got home.

Thursday, November 12, 2009


So I played in a cash game again last night. It was (for me) just a $20 tourney and there were 40 people who showed up. I ended up running like god late and chopped it when we got down to 3 players for like $270. But I feel a little bad about it because for me, I am just playing for fun, but for a lot of these guys $200 is more than they make on a daily basis so I would almost rather just break even or even lose a little bit than make money since the reason I am playing is more just to shoot the shit and get out of the house than anything else.

Anyhoo, I still haven't got the urge to get back to work online but I did finally vacuum and tidy up the house today and put in a little bit of a ghost session with one of my students so I feel I accomplished at least a little bit.

Tomorrow I play in another cash game and then I am planning on just taking everyday day by day.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Trying to find some motivation

I really haven't done anything since last Wednesday when I won the Sniper tourney on UB. I want to get the house cleaned up but haven't; I want to get back in shape but haven't exercised; I want to stockpile more money for my poker bankroll but haven't played...

It would be one thing if I was out living it up everyday and having a blast, but I am not even doing that. Instead I spend my days surfing the web, watching tv, and reading. And while it is always nice to veg out for a day or two it gets pretty boring when it goes on for a week... yet I still can't find the oomph to actually do anything.

The good thing this week is that my live home game group has 3 games this week, so I got to play last night, and will play again tonight and Friday night in a live setting with a good group of players where I always have fun.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

I is bored!

So there is no way that I will be able to not play the rest of this month just because I would be way too bored. So the plan at this point is to get myself and the house back in shape and then play poker whenever I want. I am planning on playing quite a bit of homegames these next couple of weeks since I have no pressure on making money the rest of this month. But just sitting at home and not playing and watching my friends play is not very thrilling so the sit on my profits and not play plan is out.

Friday, November 06, 2009

I is Famous!

I got mentioned in the weekly roundup article on P5s. I am pretty sure when I signed up for pocket5s they asked where you were from, so I entered my birthplace, Nigeria, as my answer. So I am now the number #1 ranked (and only) player from Nigeria - in fact I am the #1 ranked player for the entire continent of Africa. The Nigerian Nightmare is back!!

Thursday, November 05, 2009


Not an FTOPs victory but I chopped the $215 sniper tourney on UB for $21k which is my biggest online score of the year. Always feels good to take down such a nice score. I'm sure I'll take tomorrow off and then I'll have the battle of making myself play or just being a lazy bastard. Not such a bad battle to have tho.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009


FullTilt's quarterly series of tourneys begins today and for the first time I actually have a bankroll where I can play the majority of the events on my own dime. I have taken a long enough break where I feel excited to play again, so hopefully I can pop off a big score at some point during this series.

Monday, November 02, 2009

First day back = sucky sucky long time

I got a full day in playing and a full session in coaching as well so that felt good. I only cashed one of the twelve tourneys I played, but I feel like I played well. The next three weeks should be pretty full in terms of playing so hopefully I can get on a hot streak quickly rather than having to dig myself out of a hole.