Lynn "Queen of Hearts" ParisLynn “Queen of Hearts” Paris

Exotic -sounding places like Macau, Montenegro and Malta represent just a few destinations for big-name professional poker players to travel to, sit down at the poker tables and win big. With poker becoming even more of a big deal all over the globe (consider the recently-formed GPL-India, GPL-China and GPL-Brazil) that’s a lot of frequent flier miles!

Take the 2017 Triton Super High Roller Series, for example. The Triton series began in January 2016 as part of the WPT National Philippines. That event broke records for WPT as its highest buy-in event ever, at US $200,000 per entry. With 52 entries, my boy (GPL team member of the LA Sunset) Fedor ( @CrownUpGuy) Holz came away with the title and a whopping prizepool of US $3,072,748.

Naturally, when I was looking over the current SHR event happening now in Macau, I couldn’t help but notice that Fedor Holz had made the final table again. In fact, he’s in second place with 4,325,000 chips while the chip leader is Spanish phenom Adrian Mateos, with 4,785,000. Up for grabs is the top prize of $2.872 million.

The rest of the final table consists of Dietrich Fast (3,370,000), Kahle Burns (2,625,000), Timothy Adams (2,185,000), start of Day 2 chipleader Stephen Chidwick (1,395,000), Isaac Haxton (1,075,000), and Poker Hall of Fame member John Juanda (990,000).

And this is just one final table at one tournament. Poker is being played non-stop, everywhere (including Montenegro where the second in the 2017 Triton Super High Roller Series took place, with the win by Manig Loeser from Germany.) Follow the poker players and you’ll see the world. You might even be able to point out Montenegro and Macau on the map!

Send me your comments or thoughts!

Pocket Bullets ParisJim “Pocket Bullets” Paris

Although this happened almost a year ago we thought it was worth a small walk through the memory lane of the Poker World to remind us again what a bad beat looks like. Back on the 30th of October 2016, at the Thunder Valley Casino in Lincoln California, during the “Poker Night in America” Cash Game Season 5 event , Bart Hanson,  with a very strong K A  ran into Quad Fours of billionaire Chamath Palihapitiya

For those of you who may not know these players here is a bit about each.

Chamath Palihapitiya is a venture capitalist born in Sri Lanka, raised in Canada, and has worked for much of his life in Silicon Valley. He made it really big after joining Facebook to lead their Mobile and International user growth. He became Facebook’s longest tenured senior executive and amassed a fortune rumored to be worth $1 billion. Palihaptiya is an owner and board member of the Golden State Warriors. He has three WSOP and two WPT cashes for a total of $175,801. In 2011, he finished 101st out of 6,865 entries in the World Series of Poker’s Main Event.

Bart Hanson is a Poker coach, commentator, CrushLivePoker.com training site owner, and an excellent Professional Cash game trainer. Hanson has been producing strategy content for over seven years. He first started on PokerRoad back in 2007, moved to Deuces Cracked and has been producing a weekly poker strategy podcast ever since. Besides all that, he has commentated on several network poker shows including WSOP final tables and is the regular co-host of “Live at the Bike.” He has observed and analyzed more poker hands than almost anyone else in the poker industry. Hanson has cashed for a total of more than $690,381.

And so lastly,  for your enjoyment is the video capturing all the thrill of victory and the very nasty and painful agony of defeat. That’s the game folks; always expect the unexpected at the Poker Tables.

Send me your thoughts and or comments!

Lynn "Queen of Hearts" ParisLynn “Queen of Hearts” Paris

For the past week, the mention of Las Vegas has conjured up the horrifying sights and sounds from the deadliest mass shooting in history that took place last Sunday night. Our thoughts and prayers have centered on the 59 innocent concert-goers who were killed in the cowardly attack by a lone gunman and the more than 500 attendees who were injured, many critically. On this tragic night, what happened in Vegas definitely did not stay in Vegas, as outrage, grief and heartbreak spread to the families and friends of the victims, while also affecting everyone, everywhere.

Of course, it spread immediately to the gaming industry, hotel and casino owners and workers and, of course, the thousands of poker players who either live in Vegas or consider the neon mecca their second home.

A Las Vegas Victims’ Fund was started on GoFundMe on Monday morning by Steve Sisolak, current chairman of the Clark County Commission. He began the campaign with a $10,000 donation, and an initial goal of $500,000. To date, the donations have exceeded over $10 million to be used to provide relief and financial support to the victims and families. In addition, many pledges of support have come directly from the gaming industry, including $3 million from MGM Resorts, $4 million from the Las Vegas Sands and many others.

Members of the poker community took to Twitter to express their sympathy, sorrow and support. What follows is a small sampling:

https://pbs.twimg.com/profile_images/815261361987002368/feylDgM9_bigger.jpgLiv Boeree @Liv_Boeree  Thinking of you, Las Vegas. Look after each other 😢❤️
Mike Leah @GoLeafsGoEh  So many lives..stolen senselessly. why people are allowed to purchase guns that can do this kind of harm I’ll never understand. Cmon world smarten up.🙏
Phil Hellmuth @phil_hellmuth Sending prayers to the victims, and families of the victims, in Las Vegas.

Mike Sexton‏ @Mike_partypoker So proud of Vegas community – lines to give blood very long, people waiting hrs – others bringing free food & drinks to them. 👍

https://pbs.twimg.com/profile_images/2859295132/d8178537f10443c9dc443691083d16d7_bigger.jpegDanielle Andersen @dmoongirl – Do not say his name. He is nobody. Do not show his face. He is nobody. Do not share his motives. He is nobody. Let him die a nobody.

Read more reactions from the Poker World here

If you would like to contribute to the Las Vegas Victims Fund please click here.

Send me your thoughts and comments

Tadas PeckaitisTadas “My Poker Coaching” Peckaitis

The first decisions that you have to make in a hand are always pre-flop, and choosing the right path will make your life much easier on the coming streets. Many players make these decisions automatically without even thinking of alternative lines or adjustments that could increase their win rate, and that could cost a lot in the long run.

I strongly believe that you need to have a solid plan with balanced ranges as your starting strategy. If you still do not have one, make sure to grab my poker hands cheat sheet. However, to reach better results, you have to adjust these ranges versus different players,instead of playing it blindly.

Adjusting versus recreational players

One of the most common changes in your strategy should be loosening up and playing more hands when you are up against weaker competition. First of all, you can easily open more hands because these opponents will not 3bet you much as a bluff and play very straightforward post flop, giving you many chances to outplay them. Moreover, their strategy will be very obvious, and you will always know where you stand in the hand.

Thus, when you face a raise from a passive player on the river, you can easily fold all your medium strength hands knowing that it is the right move. Taking into consideration that these players will not give you a hard time post flop, will straightforwardly play their hands and make many mistakes, you can easily play more hands versus them and considerably increase your win rate.

Adjusting versus tougher opponents

There is a whole new story when you are up against someone good. Contrary to the first example, these players will punish you quite hard for any irregularities in your game, and you really do not want to get out of line against them.

The best adjustment is to play a bit tighter and try to gain range advantage over them. If you can do that and have better hands pre-flop, then you obviously will have more made hands post flop as well and can build your stack without taking enormous risks. Apart from tightening your ranges a bit, you should not deviate from balanced strategies. Your best bet is to play in an unexploitable GTO (game theory optimal) way and stay away from  trouble.

If you can do that and exploit all the mistakes of your weaker opponents by changing your pre-flop ranges, you will gain an ultimate edge and be on the right track for success at the poker tables!

Send me your thoughts, comments or questions!