Posts Tagged ‘Poker Chips’

Pocket Bullets Paris

During a recent poker game, I took a pretty large pot with a 7 of hearts and 2 of clubs. A novice player, who was watching the action, asked me a frequently asked question in poker. He wanted to know  “when is it a good time to bluff?” I gave him a couple of tips and after thanking me and patting me on the back for taking that hefty pot with just a 7 and 2 off suit, he left. 

I thought about his question and decided that although bluffing has been a topic in many “How To Play Poker” books and I had written about it and talked about it many times, I would revisit the topic once again. 

Best times to bluff:

  1. Bluff if you only have one other player still at the table.
  2. Hit it hard if the board cards or  the cards you have showing allow you to represent a winning hand.
  3. When your image at the table is that you are a very strong player.
  4. If you are in late position and no one has represented any kind of strong hand.
  5. If you can read your opponents and you really believe that they will fold to your bet or raise.

But you have to tread carefully through the bluffing canyons or you could slip and fall pretty heavily. You really need to try to read your opponents and especially pick up on how they played any of their winning hands.
There are very definite times when you should not bluff:

Worst times to bluff:

  1. If you know of any player still in the hand who will always call even when he has nothing. When you meet a player like this it’s best to let him or her shoot themselves in the foot!
  2. If one of the players has raked in a huge pile of poker chips and he can easily cover your bet or raise without much damage to him. Stay away; play it safe!
  3. If there are still  a lot of players at the table. Don’t do it!

Texas Poker Store Custom ChipsJust remember these simple do’s and don’ts and be a winner! And while you are wondering about bluffing, remember that we co-wrote the song “I May Be Bluffin’ “. Here it is for your enjoyment:

 

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Pocket Bullets Paris

Jim “Pocket Bullets” Paris 

Every so often we get asked a “poker history” question which we try to answer in our blog. We figure if one poker fan wants to know about something poker-related, then probably a lot more of you would like to know too. Questions about poker chips come up a lot, so once again we are revisiting a blog that we published a couple of times in the past.

If you google “The History of poker chips” you will find enough results to satisfy your desire to learn all about the “poker chips” we have been playing with since the early 1800s. There’s nothing new that I can tell you that hasn’t already been said. Maybe future technology will come up with some mind-blowingly different way to go “all in,” but for right now it is still pretty much the same as it always was, and using poker chips is still the most accurate and fun way to play the game.

Texas Poker Store Custom ChipsAt least for now, the biggest question still out there is; what exactly is a “Casino Quality Poker Chip”? Ever since poker’s current popularity, almost anyone you ask and certainly most players believe that a real casino quality chip is 11.5 grams and made out of clay. Not so fast.

Today, a standard casino chip is 39 millimeters in diameter with a weight ranging from 8.5 grams to 10.5 grams…not 11.5! Clay composition chips are very popular with casinos and the general poker-playing public. The vast majority of “Casino Quality Poker Chips” are “clay” chips that in reality are better described as compression molded chips.

However, ceramic chips were introduced sometime in the 80s as an alternative to clay chips and are also currently used by casinos worldwide.These ceramic chips are actually injection-molded chips made with a special plastic or resin formula that approximates the feel and sound of ceramic or porcelain.

Las Vegas 14 Gram Poker ChipsGoing against most players way of thinking, I’m here to tell you that no poker chip, or any kind of casino gaming chip,  going back all the way to the 80s, 70s, 60s and maybe even before that, has been made out of 100% clay. As far as I know that’s the real story. Check out this set of 300 Las Vegas chips, ideal for bringing the casino feel to your next home game. Each chip is made of clay composite materials and weighs 14 grams. The chips are housed in a walnut case. 

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

the Global Poker LeagueI used to write extensively (as in 30 blogs) about the Global Poker League (GPL). It was something new and exciting, and watching its Inaugural (and only) Season is what turned me into a poker fan. I often praised the vision of the GPL’s innovative founder, Alex Dreyfus, who came up with the whole poker “team” concept, with team managers and a “Draft” just like in the big leagues. I bought into what I considered my poker “home” team: the LA Sunset, and rooted for them with almost as much passion as I had once felt for the NY Yankees. For a solid nine months, poker had been “sportified” and I was a self-proclaimed fan-girl.

I checked back in my archives and realized that the last time I wrote about the GPL was in December of 2017, almost a year ago. In it, I was speculating about what had happened to the promised and much anticipated Season Two. I still don’t know any more than I did back then and trust me – I have Googled it to death. For a brief moment, I thought I had struck gold this time when I clicked on “Global Poker League Second Season Waits While Expansion Occurs in China, Other Areas” but it turned out to be an article in Poker News Daily, written by Earl Burton on March 19th, 2017. I had covered the same information in my last blog. In another March 2017 post Americas Card Roomfrom Americas Cardroom, author Bob Garcia wrote a blog on the same topic, and ended with the statement: Fans of the season one show are reportedly expecting a date for the series to return.

Yes, Bob! You were right!! I’m not sure now whether or not your original intention was to be facetious, but in retrospect it sounds more and more likely that the joke is on us –the GPL’s once-devoted and highly disappointed fans.  I, for one, feel kind of foolish for devoting so much time and energy trying to win over fans to the Global Poker League; I guess I never expected it to be a one-hit wonder. Oh well, I’m on my way to put down my buy-in, get some poker chips and hit the tables.

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

The title is actually a line spoken by entrepreneur Molly Bloom, played by Jessica Chastain in the upcoming poker thriller, “Molly’s Game.” I’ve written two previous blogs about this film as I eagerly awaited its release. The reasons are simple:

  1. What could possibly intrigue a poker blogger more than a movie about high-stakes poker, especially one written by one of my all-time favorite screenwriters, Oscar-winner Aaron Sorkin, also making his directorial debut
  2. In the late 2000s, Bloom ran the most exclusive high-stakes star-studded underground poker game ever seen in Hollywood;
  3. Poker-themed movies are generally filled with tension, humor, paranoia, excitement suspense and lots of poker chips;
  4. Idris Elba

So, if you’re ready to see the next great poker movie, you’re in luck. The movie has already received great reviews from film critics and was recently honored by the American Film Institute to run as its closing night gala.

Bloom, a world-class skier headed for the Olympics before a freak accident kept her out of the Salt Lake City games, went instead to Los Angeles where, as Sorkin states, she “ended up running for 12 years the world’s most exclusive high-stakes poker game, a game where there were movie stars (like Ben Affleck, Matt Damon and Toby McGuire) and hedge fund managers, big name athletes, Saudi princes and millions of dollars changing hands in the course of a night. She became known as the biggest game-runner in the world.”

To find out more about the woman who’d been on her way to Harvard Law School and wound up running a poker room, you’ll have to see the film. And I can finally say, we won’t have to wait much longer. “Molly’s Game” is opening on Christmas Day!

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