The Lock Poker MTT Grind, Full Tilt Poker Thoughts, and The Future of Online Poker
October 20, 2012 Leave a Comment
My life has been quite busy as of late, and I haven’t had a chance to sit down and get all of my new ideas and theories out into blog entries. I am still sorting everything out to present it as best as possible so bear with me. I have a lot of ideas I want to share with everyone but I need to present them in a way that everyone can understand and formulate an opinion on. It might be impossibly hard to do that with some of the subject matters I will touch on. A lot of these topics will be discussed on our podcast which should be live by the end of the year if all goes according to plan.
Having said that, this past month I have gotten back into online poker after a short hiatus from the game, which has enabled me to learn a lot more about myself, and also the game of poker.Poker is a wonderful game, and a great hobby that can net you some profit if you put in the time to study, learn, and practice the game. It can however also drain your life away if you put too much time into it, especially when you are losing and not playing your A game.
Recently I have decided to play smaller stakes no-limit hold’em tournaments on LockPoker.com and slowly build a bankroll to be used when the better online poker sites and big fish return. Even though my ROI will be noticeably lower on Lock Poker, I have still shown a profit over 1,000 MTTs so it is worth it for me to keep playing them. I am also learning and improving my tournament game each day which will have me ready to play a lot of the bigger buy in live tournaments in casinos which I love playing far and beyond anyway compared to any online tournament. Live poker is poker at it’s finest, mental warfare with big money on the line!
The Return of Full Tilt Poker
A majority of my online bankroll is tied up still on Full Tilt Poker, but they reopen for business on Nov. 6 everywhere in the world except the United States of course. The US government has to sort out the $300 million they got from PokerStars to reimburse all of the US players. Some US players have $1,000,000 locked up for over 18 months, and I can only imagine what that must feel like.
I am a little more fortunate. I went on pretty bad downswing before Full Tilt Poker shut down so I didn’t have as much in my roll as I usually keep online. It was a good time to run bad I guess, but I still hate losing.
The Full Tilt Poker and Pokerstars deal is one of the biggest steps for poker in the last 18 months. The fact that EVERYONE will get paid back their money, overseas and the United States, shows that the the US government understands how many successful pros are making a LIVING playing online, and they need to work to feed their families. I think the government realized people are going to gamble anyway, so why not reguate it, and collect a nice tax gift from all the players, estimated to be in the billions of dollars each year.
Why would the US government want to legalize online poker?
It has been proven time and time that poker is a game of skill, with a luck element involved. I won’t go into detail but if you are still up in the air, do some research yourself. Take a look at some of the pros making multiple final tables each year at at the WSOP and you will see what I mean.
Long-term skill will ALWAYS outweighs short-term luck and results. There has been much fight for legalization from groups like the Poker Players Alliance (PPA) and I think more and more people are starting to realize that poker is a game of skill, not just plain ol dumb luck. Dumb luck can win you some money in the short-term, but in the long-term, if you are a losing player, you will end up losing. Subsequently if you are a winning player, the more hours and hands you log, the more profit you will generate assuming you treat the game seriously and practice proper bankroll management.
I can’t give a time frame of total legalization of online poker in the United States, but when it does happen, I think it will be a great thing for everyone in this country, not just the poker grinders. More jobs and tax revenue will become available, players will feel a lot safer having money online, and of course, the player fields will become HUGE, meaning bigger prize guarantees in tournaments, weaker player fields (still flooded with good regulars however, but more fish than now), and a variety of more games to choose from. Everyone wins!
The Lock Poker MTT Grind
Taking a few months off from online poker has given me a fresh perspective on what I need to do to become a winning long-term player online. In order to play profitable poker, I understand that I will need 100% focus at ALL TIMES, no exceptions. If I am playing poker, there is nothing else I am doing or will be willing to do except play poker to the best of my ability. Everything else is secondary.
One mistake can cost me my entire tournament, and hours of grinding can lead to no results if I make a single mistake for all my chips. Consequently, I must be patient enough to let other players make mistakes, then capitalize on them. Poker is very situational, and I will have to look at each situation from every angle before deciding what to do. Playing live gives you more time and information to gather on your opponent, but I see exponentially more hands online, and I see a lot of the same usernames and know their style of play. I know also that they are developing reads on me so I have to counter that by switching gears often.
This past Sunday I booked one of my biggest scores in a while in a $5 rebuy. 340 players registered, there were a total of 627 rebuys and 200+ add-ons creating a super huge prize pool for a $5 tournament. After all was said and done, I won $1,150 for first place after an intense final table filled with all good regulars who have a ton of FT experience. We started the tournament with 3,000 chips and by the end of the tournament, I was sitting with all the 4.6 million chips in play.
It was a nice win, and I definitely played good, but I am only interested in getting better from here. I play online sessions a lot with friends who also understand the fundamentals of poker and how to win and I think playing together is ultimately going to benefit us in the long run. We discuss hand histories, how we played against a certain opponent, if we should have bluffed in this spot etc. Playing and learning with other brilliant poker minds is a fun and enriching experience, even if we don’t win or cash in every tournament we play. We know that we are getting better each day we log on.
For now, it is back to the grind, and we will keep you updated on our progress as the weeks and months go on!