Bodog Ari

I'm Ari Engel and am also known as BodogAri online. I've played poker for a living for virtually my entire post-college life. In the last few years I have started teaching people my style and philosophy on poker tournaments. Many of them have done very well. If you are interested in getting my help, email:

Sunday, April 30, 2006


has been treating me well recently, I ft'ed the "Grand" omaha tourney, and today ft'd their sunday 300. Unfortunately, i reraised a mid position raiser for most of my chips with kq, he happily called with ak, and I didn't get lucky.

Doing preety well in the full tilt and paradise sunday tournies, but still a long way to go.

Can the value of "table respect" be quantified?

In past hand analysis', I've made many calls of reraises that appear more questionable than they are. However, it is very important that the table know, if they reraise me, they are not gonna be able to pick up a whole bunch of chips without a showdown. This is what I label as "table respect"- people respect your bets and will not raise without a big hand.

Of course, this does nothing to excuse me when I do make bad plays, (and I admit, must be used with extreme self honesty) but it is something that must be taken into account the next time you see me call a raise with k8.

Another Saturday Night

A Cat Stevens song. (Big Whoop, wanna fight about it?- Family Guy ref.)

Today, was probably my best Sat. night ever. First (well not really first, but for these purposes...) I played the Full Tilt Winner Choice $200 satellite, where only first won a 10k seat. (Top 8 got varying amounts of $) I won the tourney and am now going to enter either the mandalay bay or mirage Wpt events.

Later on, I was playing in the $100 on Stars, and although I made many questionable plays, and clearly was not on my "A" game, I managed to get lucky at the right spots, and was able to comeback from a 3-1 deficit heads up to take it down. It would be so sweet if I can continue this momentum onto tommorow.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Another Day

Yes, it is a great JT song.

I went deep in the 30R again last night, but we were shorthanded and my aq reraise was insta called by ak, I flopped the nut flush draw, but gg.

I've been following Micheal Totten's travels around the world and find them very informing. He is an independent journalist, who has been travelling throughout the mid-east and documenting his experiences in his blog . He has been to Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon and is now in Israel.

I particularly enjoyed reading about his day trip from Turkey to Iraq. From reading the MSM (mainstream media) wouldn't even know that kind of thing is possible. Keep doing what you doing Michael.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006


Another amazing day. I'm really tired, had a long day. In the afternoon $500 plo on pokerroom i finished 4, and in the night Dise 30R, I finished 2nd. Less than a week ago, I was complaining about the "worst run of my poker life".

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

2nd in Stars 100

Slightly disappointing as I came into the final table with a monster chip lead. But by the time we got to heads up, I only had a small chip lead and did not prevail. However, overall I'm obviously happy, especially since I've been running very bad at Stars, and the guy I lost to was a well respected pro, Davin Anderson.

Also final tabled the Bodog 30R 25K, where I finished 5. In this tourney there was one guy to my immediate left who was a hyper aggresive loose player, who had a monster chip lead. I was nowhere close to him in chips but had everyone else slightly covered. He raises under the gun a standard amount, and it gets folded to me, i go all with my ak soooted, and he insta calls with 1010, and i lose the race. Obviously, normally the goal is to go for first, but when I get down so deep other dynamics do play a role, and sometimes I have to play tighter than I'd otherwise like in order to move up (more accurately, avoid risking getting knocked out) but I believe this was not one of those cases, and I am satisfied with my move. He is opening with a large variety of hands, and when he makes it (blinds 3k-6k) about 18k to go, and (I have 105K approx) I don't think I have enough chips to flat call, and I believe that I am far ahead of his range, perhaps even dominating him, it was a preety easy decision to go allin. Unfortunately, it doesn't always work out. Can't complain with the last couple of days though, been going very well. Gnight.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Sweet, Had a great day

Although I made many questionable moves, somehow I managed to wade myself through a very good field in the UB 500 and came 2nd for my biggest score in a while.

I bombed the rest of the majors, but later on in the Full Tilt Horse $200, I took it down, although I am really really awful at stud, and kept losing significant portions of my stack in that game. The hi/lo games made up for it.

I finished 4th in one of the small UB 100's this morning and I am now now 3/15 in another one of them. Both have had fields slightly over 100 (so they pay 20, although 10-20 is barely above the buyin). I like that because it means the bubble comes quicker, as a percentage of players out.

Sunday is Here

Best day for poker, now all I gotta do is go deep in a couple of tournies today....

I wish the best of luck to "JohnnyBax" and Vanessa Roussou, who are among 19 left in the Bellagio 25K tourney. First place is over $3.5 Mil, GL both of u.

Tentative schedule for me today includes Bodog 109, Stars and Party 215, UB 500 and 215, Dise 2 30R and 200, Full Tilt 216 and Horse 216, and a few smaller ones.

Friday, April 21, 2006


My last laptop didn't have any wireless connection available, and bec. i'm not tech savvy, I just never did anything about it. When I got a new one, it came with wireless installed, and it was preety cool, sitting yesterday in the Vegas airport waiting for my flight to leave and playing 5-10 nl on Bodog. I didn't play too long, because they paged me in the middle, something to do w/ my lack of valid current id... got it all settled easy but by the time I got back it was getting closer to departure time, so I figured I'd just catch up on p5 posts I'd missed over my 50 hour mini-retirement from online/poker.

I'm excited to get back to regular work, and not many people can say that. As Mike the Mouth says, "Thank G-d for Chris Moneymaker."

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Ahhhhhhhh, now I remember why they call me "Bodog" ari

I wasn't too happy, after busting out early from the afternoon tournies, especially the 100R, where i was in for at least 1K (wasn't keeping track, could be more like 1500), and busted about 20 minutes after the rebuy period was over.

After a quick lunch break, I decide to sit down at the Bodog cash games, 1 10-20 nl and 1 5-10.

Needless to say (to any Bodog regulars at least), I'm way positive for the day now.

Calvin Aire is a pimp and I love Bodog.

Last days of Passover= 50 hours of no poker for me.

I'll be back in NY thursday night/Friday, so back to a regular schedule.

Happy Holidays all.

Monday, April 17, 2006

In such a bad run right now

that I'm really happy about ft'ing one of those small UB 100 tourneys. Sitting 1/4. These ones ussually pay 8 places, and i've finished 9 or 10'th about 3/4 times over the past week. Notg (Name of the game), but still can be quite fustrating.

Came to the Final table with an average stack, but won 2 big hands, both when i called an allin with the best hand after much thought in both cases, almost timed .

1. I have a2 spades, and i call a mini raise preflop in position. (everyone else folds). The flop comes a74 (rainbow), and i call a pot-sized bet. My opponent goes "auto" all-in on the turn, and after thinking forever, I didn't think he/she would do that with the AK or AQ that was being represented. I call, and hold against some sooted connector, that had flopped 1 pair.

2. I have 107 in the SB, and when it gets folded to me, i complete, and the bb checks. The flop comes 10 8 3 with 2 diamonds. I bet a little less than pot. Turn comes 9C, i bet again, bigger than last time, smaller than pot. River is an 8 (no D), and I check, he then proceeds to go allin, which was a considerable amount bigger than the pot. After almost running out of time. I call to see his a7, and scoop a large pot.

In theory, I made a good call in hand 2, but those sort of calls, have cost me alot too. I'm trying to hone my reading skills, so that i can make these calls, but not the fishie ones.

Edit: Finished 3rd, after losing a bunch of chips, on a couple of weak plays by me, and then, when i was 3rd in chips, but still healthy, i raise from the button with a standard raise (about 2.5 BB with ducks (22), given the UB structure and end of the tourney/high blinds). After the small blind goes all in and the BB folds, i think for a bit, and am preety convinced, I have the best hand at the moment. (Of course with 22, its always gonna be a coin flip, but i'll take it with chips in the pot, and the better end of the flip) He flips aq, and i'm all clear until a river q, gg me.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Forgot My ID

I arrived at JFK airport last week, only to realize that I had forgotten my ID. They let me on the plane with my old expired license and SS card. So far, I've played a couple of places out here, but nothing big, and I've had no problems. but obv. if u see my pic , I generally require a valid ID to enter a casino. GL me in the next few days, living the "underage" lifestyle again.


Sometimes, it's just not meant to be. Playing my game, getting in my money with the best hands, and boom, none of them are holding today. One bright spot in otherwise extremely unlucky/bad day, in the party 500K guar. our table starts shorthanded, with maybe 6 players, and after one limper (blinds 20-40) i make it 140, one of the blinds reraises to about 400, and i flat call with my 66. The flop comes j63, and after he makes a nice size raise, i figure him for an overpair, and go all in. He thinks for not too long, and calls with 77??. TY sir. 1800 people left, and havent had anthing since, sitting slightly above average with 8800.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Pesach - Passover

My parents have flown in from New Zealand, and my siblings and I will be meeting them for the holiday in Las Vegas. While I will not be playing poker the rest of the week, I do plan on getting in some live games early next week either at the bellagio or wynn.

Risk Taking

The father of the "blogosphere" Glenn Reynolds aka , has a great book out, that I've already mentioned, "An Army of David's". (I really hope this isn't illegal.) Reynolds writes about the failure of governmental space policy, and the resulting private initiatives on Pg. 201 as follows;
"By definition, if twenty-seven teams go for the prize, at least 26 will fail. And that's okay. Government programs, on the other hand, are afraid of failure. So they are either too conservative, playing it safe so as to avoid being blamed for failure, or too drawn out, dragging on so long that, by the time it's clear they're not going anywhere, everyone responsible has died or retired. (In government, or big corporations, it's okay not to succeed, so long as you aren't seen to fail.)"

Poker, like any capitalistic activity, rewards risk taking. Much like the governmental space programs in Reynolds example, the fear of failure, will lead to the demise of even the most brilliant mind at the poker table.

While it may be true that in large organizations the ability to stear clear of "failure" makes up for any lack of success, in poker that is false. Self honesty is a must in this aspect. (In fact self-honesty is probably the most important characteristic a poker player can have.) You have to be able to honestly evaluate your play based on your decision making, and improve accordingly. Looking over a tournament, and saying "well damn, my 88 lost to ak in a race, so i finished 7, i made money and played well, nothing i can do about it. GG" will do nothing to improve your game.

Although you can't win every tournament, you have to play them all to win. Therefore, success in a poker tournament means winning it. Failure obviously means not winning it. Combine this with the last paragraph, and it is easy to see why you shouldn't be happy in the above case with your "failure." Rather, you should look back at the hand when there were 14 people left in the tournament that caused you to get to the spot, where your 88 was all in pre-flop to ak."

I have played more tournaments this year than just about anyone on the planet, yet I continue to see mistakes in my game. This is no shock, we are all humans, and make errors, the key is to evaluate those errors and learn from them. Being content with "not failing", moderate success, or getting deep, is a recipe for disaster.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Final Table of 100R

7 Left and I'm 4th in chips, with a very tough lineup, including Bel0WaB0ve, aaaaaaa, and Brad Kondraki (def, wrong spelling, from wsop a couple years ago)

Monday's Food For Thought

If you never lay down the winner, you are no more than a calling station. If you always fold the loser, you are too weak.

Afternoon session today including the usual rebuys, 30,50 and 100, along with a 100 freezeout on UB, where i'm sitting 8/50 from the small field.

Poker Jargon

It wasn't too long ago I thought of PLO as a terrorist organization.

Sunday, April 09, 2006


Somehow I missed the Paradise Masters main event 1K buyin. Oh well. In Bodog's 100K guarantee, and I'll be starting a 200R and a 30R on Dise soon, as well the $500-100K guar, on UB.
Stars and Party's big sunday tourney start at 430pm est, and for the stars one I have a last longer going on

Hopefully today can be a big day.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

UB 100 Cont.

I'm sitting nice in 1/6, when the most aggressive guy at the table raises from early postion. I flat call with qq in position, knowing that I'll get a continuation bet from him, and secretly hoping someone tries a squeeze move. Everyone folds and we see a 996 flop. He bets small, I raise big and he flat calls. Turn is a Blank, and when he checks, i move all in, only for him to call a9. So much for the trap...

Sitting 2/6 now with 38K, 3rd has 33K, and he now has 112K for the chip lead.

UB 100

Sitting at Final Table 1/8 in this 10K guar. Only 96 entrants.

Made all my chips when we were down to 2 tables. Normally I use the "bubble" time to try and steal blinds, but in the slower UB structure, that strategy is not as effective, as thte deeper stacks, allow opponents to play back with less difficulty. Here are some of the big pots:

I had 1010, raised preflop triple the blinds, and got one caller, flop came 8 high and he check raised my 3/4 pot size bet, virtually all in, i move all in, and hold against his k8.

A guy, who has been relatively aggresive when it gets folded to him, raises the my BB, either double or triple the blind. I call with j10, and the flop comes kj2, i check call a small-medium size bet. Turn is 5, and I check call a slightly larger bet. River is a 10, and i check call a slightly larger bet. He shows a3, and i scoop a nice size pot.

Down to 1/6, but now 2nd in chips is almost as big as me.

Blind Battles

This is what they mean when they talk about blind battles, all options are open, and ussually the person with more heart will win.

Hand #30939073-55 at Sat11pmB-005 (No Limit tournament Hold'em)
Powered by UltimateBet
Started at 08/Apr/06 23:59:19

tomtime is at seat 0 with 3290.
autoedifying is at seat 1 with 4980.
James Taylor is at seat 2 with 6360.
poppapump is at seat 3 with 3900.
nweber is at seat 4 with 11925.
benpatterson is at seat 6 with 3200.
seven-duece is at seat 7 with 1820.
NC_Tommy is at seat 9 with 3685.
The button is at seat 1.

James Taylor posts the small blind of 20.
poppapump posts the big blind of 40.

tomtime: -- --
autoedifying: -- --
James Taylor: Jh Th
poppapump: -- --
nweber: -- --
benpatterson: -- --
seven-duece: -- --
NC_Tommy: -- --


nweber folds. benpatterson folds. seven-duece
folds. NC_Tommy folds. tomtime folds.
autoedifying folds. James Taylor raises to 120.
poppapump calls.

Flop (board: 7d Ah Ac):

James Taylor bets 180. poppapump raises to 360.
James Taylor re-raises to 900. poppapump folds.
James Taylor is returned 540 (uncalled).

Hand #30939073-55 Summary:

No rake is taken for this hand.
James Taylor wins 960.

Ty all

for the support. I can't say I'm happy with my placement, but poker was never meant to be a nice or fair game. During the 14 or so levels i played, their were 2 that i played badly, my first and the 2nd last, where i went from 350k to 200K. I'm very happy I went through this learning experience, and I hope to improve in my game, so that I can take it a step further.

Some thoughts:

Deepstack poker is a very different kind of game than most of the tournies I play online.

Image is huge, to go from being "BodogAri" online to a 22 year kid, who according to some reports looks as young as 14, is a very interesting dynamic. Excluding all other factors, I'm given a significant amount of respect when playing online against a normal opponent. On the other hand, all other things held even, people were very likely to think that I could be bullied out of pots during this tourney.

For example, I had one hand, when blinds were 1200-2400 i believe, where i raised to 6500 under the gun, the button makes it 20K to go, and when it gets folded to me, I make it 65K to go, he then proceeds to go all in. In this situation, bet, raise, reraise, rereraise, my opponent is holding kk or aa, at least 80-90% of the time. I was only able to call his last raise, while viewing it within the light that he saw me, a kid trying to make the money. (About 70 left at the time, with 40 cashing.)

My last hand of the tourney, i think blinds were 3k-6k, and the under the gun player, spiro -55lucky55- makes it 18K to go, i reraise to 56K (around there) to see where I am at, and he immediately goes all in. Well, I could end the hand just there, being that he responded to my "Where am i at question?" with a "you're beat". But, i start thinking a little, and it occurs to me, that in the past he had played with his chips, delayed, etc. when he held monster hands, this time when he went all in so quickly, it almost felt the same as the online pushes that i'm used to seeing with ak. I had played with Spiro the entire first day, and a decent part of the second, so I knew he was solid, and therefore there was definately a chance, that he had an over pair.

In the end, the combo, of a very quick all in shove, me having significant money in the pot, and my "feeling", I chose to call. He showed AK, the flop came ace high, and i was sent packing.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Break 1

Up to 105K.

1. Had 68 soooted in BB, and called a min raise, flop comes 10,9,6, i check, he bets big, i call. Turn is a k, i check he goes all in, and i fold, he shows a king.

2. I'm in SB, and it gets raised to 6500 by loose guy when it gets folded to him, blinds are 800-1600, and i reraise to 20500 with ak. He thinks for awhile and flat calls. Flop is qj7, i bet 20k of my 26 left. He thinks forever and calls. Turn is a 10, and we get the rest in, my broadway beats his kq for top pair. Weeeeeee, nice turn. On the same token though, bad flop.

Foxwoods Update

A couple more big hands i now remember:

1. I have KK in early position, with blinds at 400-800, and make it 2400 to go, a guy in mid position, who had recently lost a large amount of chips and is probably on tilt goes all in, i make the easy call, to see his qj, flop is a q, river is j.

2. I have QQ (Q hearts) in early position, with blinds of 200-400, and make it 1200 to go, i get 4 callers. The flop comes out 456 (2 hearts), it goes check, I check, bet 3k, fold, call, and then I raise it, and make it 12K to go. They both fold, and I rake a medium pot.

I am 2nd stack at my table going into day 2, with a stack about average.

The hand with k 10 vs a5, was against a pro, altough I had no idea at the time, just knew he was super aggro.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Foxwoods Day 1

Here are some of my big hands, it all from memory, so i'm sure some details are wrong:

1. I get 45 SS, and triple blinds from early postion when they are 50-100, i get one call from the small blind (Drunkish old guy) and the flop comes aj10 (2 spades). He checks, and i bet 400, he raises 1K more, I flat call. Turn comes blank 9, and he checks, i check through to get my free card. River is 3 of spades. He goes all in for some large number that is a huge overbet, and i consider whether he has a higher flush, but since he's a drunk old guy, i figure he wouldn't bet that much with a hand that beats me, I call and he flips kq no spades. I now have about 40K.

2. Blinds are 100-200, and one guy limps to me from early position, i make it 700 to go, and when it gets folded around to the limper he moves his short stack all in. I immediately call with aa, only see him flip over 33. Turn comes a 3, and I'm down to 30K.

3. Blinds are still 100-200, it gets folded to me, and i make it 600 to go with aq. Only the button calls. The flop comes A J 10, and I bet 1K, button calls. Turn is a 9, I check, he checks. River is a 7, I check and call his 1K sucker bet. He flips over a8, and takes the small pot.

4. I have 56 SS on the button and limp after a bunch of limpers, the flop comes a73, 2 spades, and i flat call a raise, everyone else folds. Turn is 7 of spades. He checks I bet 1500, he calls. River is an A, he comes out betting and I fold. He claims he had a3.

5. Blinds are 200-400, and late position raises triple the blinds, the button calls as do i with kq. Flop comes 10 10 7, and it goes check check check. Turn is a blank, and it goes check check, bet of around 4k, I figure he is weak, and is relatively tight, so i reraise to 10K, and they both fold.

6. Blinds are 600-1200, and it gets folded to super aggresive player, who had been tripling every time it got folded to him (same raiser as last hand), he is now much shorter, and chooses to push all in for around 11K, it gets folded to me in the big blind, and i really don't give him much credit. I look down at a5, and say aloud, I can't see any way I'm beat, think for 30 secs, and then call, and hold against his k10.

7. Sitting around 56K, going into day 2.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

PLO Story

I'm sitting in the Dise master Pot Limit Omaha event 21/50, with a player named "pinappls" to my right. He is one of the top players that I have ever player PLO against. I am much better Hi Lo player than high straight, but the few times I've played PLO on Bodog he's alway been there with a nice stack.

One time a while back we were both at the same table playing a 5-10 PLO cash game with a max buyin of 1K. (They do have the rebuy glitch, but I don't recall if it had been used) Both pinapples and myself had over 10K at the table, when a hand came up where he had flopped top 2 with a straight draw, and I had aa with nut flush draw, inside st. We got it all in the flop, when I led out, he raised and I reraised, commiting myself to the pot. He thought for a long time, and went allin for the last few thousand. I got bailed out when the board paired on the river. I might not be explaining the hand 100%, but he told me after that we were 50-50 on the flop. Nice 20K coinflip to win.

Wrong end of the bubble

Decided to delay my trip to foxwoods till this evening, so i played the 50 pot limit holdem, 50R both on stars (busted early), and on Dise the 30R and masters $200 Pot limit omaha. The Dise 30R paid 50 spots, and i ended up in 50'th position when under the gun minimum raised under the gun, like he'd been doing for a while almost every time he was under the gun. It gets folded to me in small blind, and I figure my 55 is the best hand, since I am sitting about 24/50 at the time, I figure I need chips, so it was a relatively easy all in, (remember, Dise structure=fast), utg calls and flips over ak soooted, and I lose the flip.

Normal strategy according to most pros, as far as I know, is not to go all in there, but rather flat call, and then go all in on the flop (if you think you are still good). This move is known as a stop-n-go. I use it sometimes, but in this case, i really thought he could have any 2 cards(well-any in top 50%), so I didn't want to force myself into a situation on a j 9 7 flop. Whereas if I put him on ak/aq,(tighter player) it makes my decisions easier post flop.

So I end in the money-but barely- in the 30R, something I rarely do, I ussually bust right before the money, or double then and have a decent stack, and make it far.

Meanwhile, sitting 93/303 in PLO Masters.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Feeling a little out of it

hence, no blogging today. I played in a few tourneys, but didn't cash in any including the masters pot limit holdem, where i went out about 150 with qq vs jj and aa all in pre, no lucksakari this time.
I'm gonna be playing the Dise 30R, stars 150, Bodog 40-25K guar (deepstack), and UB 30 (supposedly added money, lets hope...)

Tommorow, I head out to Foxwoods, for my 3rd big buyin live event. Supposedly, we are gonna start with 20K in chips, so that should allow plenty of room for play. I have one simple goal, to win, wish me luck. I'll try and give updates each day (hopefully there is more than one) on how I'm doing, and big hands that came up.

Monday, April 03, 2006


Out of Bodog 25K around 50'th, top 27 paid, got caught making moves one too many times.

In Dise 30R, 2 big hands. I am Big blind, and get one limper from late position and small blind completes, i have k4 hh so i check. Flop comes out jj5 with j5 of hearts, SB checks, and i do, "knowing" button will raise, i check raise his 2/3 pot bet, a ridiculous amount that pot commits me. He flat calls. I "know" he has a j now, but go allin on a blank turn, as i am pot committed anyways. He calls and flips 44, so much for my "knowing". River is a beautiful heart, and I win a big pot.

Next hand, I am small blind, and it gets folded to me, I decide to just limp with 66. The big blind who is one of the few that have me outchipped, raises 5000 into the approx 4k pot. I now am thinking that he's just trying to take it down, but don't really want to play my hand out of position against him, so i just go all in to end it right there. I am 96% sure i have the best hand at the moment, so i don't even mind if he calls. He thinks for a bit, and then calls with 88. The flop comes XX6, XX and i double up, and become chip leader of the tourney.

3rd break now, and i've lost a little of the lead, but still 1/174, with 118K.

Interesting Hand from Bodog 25K

I am button, and have about 6k, with blinds of 150-300-75. I have kj soooted on button, and when it gets folded to me, i make it 800 to go, the small blind calls, and then the big blind goes all in. Normally, this is an autofold situation, but i really felt the big blind was weak, and i thought the best hand he had was an underpair, but probably, i thought he was stealing, honestly, i recognized his name, but don't know his style, just something that happens every now and then. I decide to call and gamble, since i need chips, and it's a decent size pot. He flips over kj, lol. I flop a flush draw, but miss.

Just doubled back up to respectability, when i have k5 both diamonds in the small blind and complete after one limper. Flop comes 6D 5 2D, giving me pair and flush draw, i bet 800 into 1200 approx pot, big blind folds, and limper goes all in, i call, and he shows 89 DD, I hold.

Average chip stack with 60 left at Bodog. Top 10 stack with 430 left in Dise 30R. Wish me luck.

22nd in the 30 Rebuy

Not much fun, gettin this deep, and not being able to capitalize. Big hand occured when i had a nice stack, and it got folded to me in small blind. Of course, in any paradise tourney, u need chips when its late, so i tried stealing the big blind (who was a medium stack) by raising an amount close to what he had left. Well he quickly called the allin with j10, and my 39 didn't get lucky. You gotta take risks to win, but I have to question my timing there. The big blind was (is) a top player, tunny, so being that he's likely to call with marginal hands, as he too is going for first, i might wanna consider a little more prudence in similar situations in the future.

What I'm not gonna stop doing is taking risks to win, it definately gets me knocked out of alot of tournies, but it allows me to have a legitimate shot at winning, when i do manage to go deep.

Bubbled 100Rebuy

and I mean bubbled, as in 18 pay, i got 19. I went out on an interesting hand. The button, who has slightly more chips than me (I am 11/19), raises triple the blinds, i move all in, and he preety quickly calls with a5, my 10 4 soooted is no good, as he rakes the pot, he types in "too predictable Ari". That's the interesting part of this hand. He was virtually 100% confident that his a5 was good, and that i was reraising him to try and take down the pot on the bubble. Nice play Fanning.

UB $100 at 2pm

15 people signed up for this thing, for some reason that makes me feel a little joy inside.

100 Rebuy

and more starting soon, lost my first 2 200 sng today, one after getting a huge stack, and then losing it all 5 handed chip leader to bust in 5 mins.

How Proud I am of my Alma Mater...

Not that I was planning on "giving back" to them for taking about 150K from me, but this certainly does nothing to change my mind.

At least they didn't admit a Taliban official.

Speaking of our education system.... it doesn't get any better than so called "higher education".

Fish/ Donkey/Weak Players

are all around, and the question is why? Why are their so many bad players around? I'm not complaining about it of course, simply trying to figure out what is it in our "drinking water" that makes most players losing players.

I think a large component of this has to do with our educational system. It is sub-standard (nice way of saying it) and it doesn't teach kids "how" to think but rather "what" to think. This leads to unprofitable players. I didn't go to public school, but I bet you all had to memorize a bunch of very important "facts" for your history tests.

In my high school, every morning I used to have a 4 hour session of one-on-one learning with a study partner, where we'd sit there and analyze one page of talmud, trying to figure out different meanings and approaches to the main texts. This experience was probably invaluable in my development as a poker player, as it actually taught me to think, and not merely memorize and spit out. (Of course, once I got to college, it was back to memorize and spit out, and honestly, although I did relatively alright in school, I don't remember too much about any of it.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Rest of the day...

didn't go as well, busted out of all my tournies, and now playing the 200 Fixed Omaha Hi/Lo and Bodog $25 10K guar. Above average at Bodog, and chip leader at stars, but still tons of people left in both.

Thank you all for the support in the Bodog 100K, too bad I couldn't finish it off.

Finished 3rd

In the Bodog 100K. Played preety well, but went out, when the aggresive small blind raised, and i went all in preflop with k9, he called with a4, and stayed ahead the whole way. GG to Gator and KevinBlackwood who also made the Final table.

Big Final Table

Chip Leader at Bodog Final Table, 100K guaranteed prize pool, with 25K first. GL me


Out at Pokerroom and SunPoker. In Bodog had 2 interesting hands. I've been playing preety tight and my loose table. I get 99 in mid position with a 2400 stack (start with 2500), blinds are 20-40, so i raise to 120 and get 2 callers (one of them a blind), the flop comes out q 9 4, with a flush draw. The blind checks, I bet 240, and it goes fold, and then the blind calls. The turn is another 4, and after he checks, I bet 520, trying to make him pay, if he has a draw, and make him think he's good if not. He goes all in and i quick call and see qj and hold.

A bit later, i get qq, with the same blinds, 3rd to act pre, i triple the blinds to 120, and the button reraises to 300. This is an interesting situation, and i really was not sure how to play it the whole hand. I just flat call pre. The flop comes out 996 (2 diamonds), and i check, he bets 520, and i call. The turn is an ace of diamonds, i check again (I have no diamond in my hand) and as he's thinking about what to do, i figure he must have either kk or jj. (He is a solid player, that I believe would not reraise with worse, in fact hard for me to even include jj in his range) So I decide that I'm gonna raise if he bets, bec. it'll be very hard for him to call with both the flush ace, and 99 out there. He ruins my plans by checking. The river comes a 5, now i have a problem, i'm really not so confident, that if i bet, he will fold kk. After waiting a bit, I decide to check, and i was really thinking that he must have kk at the time, so i think i woulda folded to over 50% of his river bets. But luckily for me, he checks with jj, and i win a medium size pot. Sitting at 5500 now. with ave of 3500.

Just raised with 33 on button, when it got folded to me. Blinds are 30-60 made it 200, by accident instead of my usual triple, small blind quickly goes all in for 5k. I'm 80% sure he has ak, but he could also have a bigger pair, given that there is very little in the pot, i make an easy fold in my mind. He proudly shows his ak sooooooted. I know according to tourney theory u can't call in those situations, but sometimes i will, it requires more than 80% read, and better situation, but can happen. UB 500 has begun, nothing eventful in first half hour, and i couldn't be happier.

Phil Helmouth Style

I think it'd be + Ev for me to be like Helmouth for the bigger tournies, and not show up for the first level or 2. I've been losing tons of chips early recently and this week, off to bad start in pokerroom 320 and Sunpoker 530. I've noticed this most at Bodog, but I'm holding steady there for now.

Interesting Thoughts

on "Global Warming" by George Will:

Money quote: "While worrying about Montana's receding glaciers, Schweitzer, who is 50, should also worry about the fact that when he was 20 he was told to be worried, very worried, about global cooling."


If u play tournament poker online, sunday is a great day. Every site runs their biggest tournament of the week on Sundays, and the prize pools continue growing at amazing rates. This is my first sunday all set up with my new layout-2 laptops and a desktop- looking forward to these tourneys and more.

Bodog: 100-100K guar
UB: 500-100K guar, 200-125K guar
Stars: 200-1M guar
Party: 200- Haven't looked yet, but prob 3/4M guar
Dise: 200: 150K guar, Dise is also running their "masters" week, where they run a big guaranteed tournament every day for a week, should be fun.
Full Tilt: 200-200K guar

I'm obviously going to be sneaking in a few more tourneys than these, but these are a nice sampling of the large buyin guaranteed prize pools that we online players call, sunday tournies or "majors".

Weak Finishes

25 in the 30R and 10 in the 100R. Off to bed, big day tommorow.

Saturday, April 01, 2006


Doing well in the 30R on Dise, and long way to go in 100R, but in good shape. Had AA under the gun in the 30R, and raised 600-1200 blinds to 4k, next to act, a shortstack goes all in for slightly more than double my bet, one other guy tags along and just flat calls. When it gets back to me, I go all in, and the flat-caller, calls and shows 77. The shortstack had kk, and luckily i held, and almost tripled up, sitting 18/73 now.

Not too great a start

to the evening. Busted out of all starting tourneys other than the 6 person a table $50 on Bodog, which had a small field, and in which I finished 3rd.

Right now, i'm about average in the dise 30k, a little below, and in good shape in the UB satellite for a $500 seat tomorrow. Starting 150 on dise, and 100 on stars. Also in a 33R satellite to Foxwoods.

I'm Baaaaaaaaak

Nothing Like 25 hours of no poker to make me want to play a nice long session.

I'm gonna start with the Stars 109 Deepstacks and 100R, Dise 300, 100 Pot Limit 0/8 and 30R. Bodog has revamped it's tourney schedule, and I am very impressed with it. They have a new shorthanded $50 at 830pm, which I'm gonna try. (I have not had success in short handed tourneys in the past- Although I don't really consider it to be a "weak" part of my game. I may even play a UB 100 tonight.

In other news, congrats to Highyield6 who took down the all ranked player tourney today. One look at that field is enough to make a man never want to play this game again. Disgusting.

I continue to lead in Bodog voting for a Team Bodog-World Series seat. Thank you.