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Old 01-01-2021, 08:45 PM   #1
Track Collector
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2021 Poker Discussion Thread

Here is the place to discuss most of poker and related activities for the current year.
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Old 01-01-2021, 10:07 PM   #2
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It certainly has been a very strange while trying to play poker over the past 12 months. Hopefully things will return to the "somewhat" normal in the not too distant future. The current "normal" has been playing at tables with plexiglass, wearing masks, more limited eating options including no food at the tables, and participating in games where full ring used to be 9 players but now games with as few as 5 players are not common. In addition, my local and much more convenient and closer poker room has still yet to reopen. That said, I am still very happy for the opportunity to play regularly, and that the earlier year-2020 rumors that my "home" poker room might close permanently have so far not come true.

Here are my results for the year 2020, which were impacted by having fewer playing sessions AND perhaps more significantly, playing in tougher 1/3 NL games in large venues (vs. 1/2 NL):

Venue Visits = 126
Hours Played = 997
Session Results = -$1710
Hourly Rate = - $1.72

Not included in the above are promotional winnings (e.g. High Hand) of $2315, which are due almost entirely by luck, but one's odds are at least improved some by the more hours one plays.

To the casual observer it might appear that (exclusive of expenses like gas) I ended up with more money in my pocket now that when I started ($2315 - $1710 = $605). In reality, I have about $800 less due to the customary and expected tips given to dealers for winning hands. (Dealer tips are simply part of one's winnings which were given away.).

I am continuing to study and work on my game, but only time will tell if I can be successful at 1/3 NL in the bigger city environment or whether I have reached my skill level max. It is entirely possible too that my success at 1/2 NL over the past two years has been due mainly to favorable variance (vs. skill), along with benefit of a weaker player pool at a small playing venue.

My 2021 poker activity likely starts tomorrow.
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Old 01-03-2021, 11:12 AM   #3
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didn't you get hours on a card for food/cash credit?
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Old 01-03-2021, 02:31 PM   #4
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didn't you get hours on a card for food/cash credit?
Yes, thanks for reminding me!

In reality, the "promotions" category includes not only High Hands, but things like bonuses earned for certain weekly playing hours reached (popular at my local Charles Town poker room), lucky tables, etc., and FOOD credits.

I'll post the food credit number after I take the time to look it up online.

Some casinos can be a little misleading and sneaky when advertising promotions. For example, Maryland Live Casino, which become my new regular poker room because of the pandemic, gives $1 per hour food credit. The problem is there are only two food facilities out of the in-house eating venues that allow food credits to be used, and they use them at a 2-1 ratio. This means that effectively one only earns $0.50 per playing hour. Of course, any credits are better than ZERO!

BTW yesterday's return to the felt for the year 2021 was a successful one. I held steady, around 1/3 down my starting bankroll, until the key hand late in the session. I had AK offsuit in late position and raised pre-flop. I was called by a guy who was passive and seemed to play both weak and well at different times. The flop came A K 7 rainbow. I bet all three streets, including all-in for my last $50 on the river. I was pleasantly surprised to see he had A3 offsuit. (At least two other times earlier in the session he held A x and flopped two pair.). Having recouped my small loss along with a nice healthy profit, I promptly ended my session the next time the Big Blind came around.

One session does not make a year but it is always nice to get off to a good start.
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Old 01-04-2021, 01:19 AM   #5
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(Dealer tips are simply part of one's winnings which were given away.).
not exactly. because usually when you lose an all in you would have bet those extra chips saved from not tipping on earlier won pots. maybe you could argue that you could have won all your opponent's extra chips in pots they were all in on to balance it out but maybe they didn't win any pots or didn't tip? JMO but i would stop counting tips and just use a simple cash out minus buy in formula. i would include splash pot winnings and would only count high hands and jackpots on the side. again though, JMO.

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I am continuing to study and work on my game, but only time will tell if I can be successful at 1/3 NL in the bigger city environment or whether I have reached my skill level max.
It is entirely possible too that my success at 1/2 NL over the past two years has been due mainly to favorable variance (vs. skill), along with benefit of a weaker player pool at a small playing venue.
i've played better players but you're a good player who can win, no doubt. maybe ramp up the aggression a little? (like 'cuse said, "i'd raise there...") but imo (and i've played a decent amount of live poker) you're a solid player. also idk how weak your pool is compared to what you call "city" casinos where there are higher levels (2/5, 5/10, 10/10) that the better players will gravitate to?

the last time i was at ct i was playing some very tough players for the 1/2 level, mostly because there was no bigger game going yet.
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Old 01-04-2021, 05:11 PM   #6
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not exactly. because usually when you lose an all in you would have bet those extra chips saved from not tipping on earlier won pots. maybe you could argue that you could have won all your opponent's extra chips in pots they were all in on to balance it out but maybe they didn't win any pots or didn't tip? JMO but i would stop counting tips and just use a simple cash out minus buy in formula. i would include splash pot winnings and would only count high hands and jackpots on the side. again though, JMO.



i've played better players but you're a good player who can win, no doubt. maybe ramp up the aggression a little? (like 'cuse said, "i'd raise there...") but imo (and i've played a decent amount of live poker) you're a solid player. also idk how weak your pool is compared to what you call "city" casinos where there are higher levels (2/5, 5/10, 10/10) that the better players will gravitate to?

the last time i was at ct i was playing some very tough players for the 1/2 level, mostly because there was no bigger game going yet.
Hi Shayne and great to hear from you!

Your cash out minus buy in formula is basically what happens anyway with regard to tax liabilities.

Yes, I've been working on becoming more aggressive, particularly pre-flop. The problem is learning how to play against other good players post-flop. As an aside, identifying previous players I have gone up against and their tendencies has never been one of my strong points. Nowadays this gets even worse with the covid precautions because everyone wears a mask, coupled with the increased difficulty of seeing them thru curved plexiglass shields.

My thinking is that the player pools will soften up when the covid restrictions are lessened. Then we will see the return of the casual/recreational player who has so far been afraid to venture out.

Any inside word on when your local Hollywood Casino at Penn National Races might open up again?
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Old 01-05-2021, 09:20 AM   #7
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if you are considering 'tax implications', are you keeping track of mileage/commuting costs?

you list 126 venue visits, are these separate days? a third of the days last year you went to play poker?
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Old 01-05-2021, 01:15 PM   #8
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if you are considering 'tax implications', are you keeping track of mileage/commuting costs?
Yes, mileage is one of the expenses I report on my Schedule "C". Mileage for trips specifically for poker in 2020 was 11298. This year "expenses" are not going to be needed/helpful, but in the 2018 and 2019 they were very helpful.


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you list 126 venue visits, are these separate days? a third of the days last year you went to play poker?
Yes, I played poker at brick-and-mortar facilities on 124 different dates in 2020. For a brief period of time when everything was shut down, I also engaged in on-line poker (PPPoker). My in-person participation rate will go up should my local casino poker room (which is approximately 1/3 the total roundtrip driving distance of the Baltimore-area poker rooms) decide to reopen.

I am semi-retired, which allows me the flexibility to participate in poker as much or little as I want.
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Old 01-06-2021, 01:17 AM   #9
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Any inside word on when your local Hollywood Casino at Penn National Races might open up again?

i'm not sure about hollywood pen??

last week i snuck away to ac but stayed 4 nights on the pokerless boardwalk.

on the way out of town we snuck over to borgata, where they had games going, but i ended up not playing although i did snag some blackjack profits.

maybe next time?
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Old 01-08-2021, 06:14 PM   #10
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i'm not sure about hollywood pen??

last week i snuck away to ac but stayed 4 nights on the pokerless boardwalk.

on the way out of town we snuck over to borgata, where they had games going, but i ended up not playing although i did snag some blackjack profits.

maybe next time?

How is Borgata?
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Old 01-09-2021, 01:22 AM   #11
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How is Borgata?
Borgata is great!

delicious french toast downstairs at casa taco!

one negative is i always feel like the racing section could be bigger.... although at least they still have one.
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Old 02-26-2021, 09:08 PM   #12
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shame on mohegan....


this kid's a complete wildman but i really enjoy his videos. the table footage makes them especially great.

youtube is really tremendous advertising for the casinos and it is time for all of them to stop this silly anti-filming policy.

some of the comments on this i find amazing regarding "player anonymity" and "bob's wife might see him at the casino when he said he was going to be somewhere else".....really they are just baffling. as if civilians are going to be randomly watching casino poker videos searching for spouses who got lost at the grocery store last month? wtf?

anyhow hope everyone is well!!

Last edited by proximity; 02-26-2021 at 09:10 PM.
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Old 03-21-2021, 04:33 AM   #13
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greetings poker thread. hope all's well and you're playing well/running good. as usual tldr

must admit i almost never play anymore. felt i had to stop. life was untenable as a reg. game got better but at the expense of the relationships in my life. wasn't even a pro. asked myself if it was a fair trade and didn't like the answer.

regged some games online the other night cuz they emailed me a promo that was a good deal and i had nothing else going on. if they were all like this session i'd have probably never quit. there was no adversity. was 3 tabling .25-.50 cash and playing a 4th table in a 55bi 8 max tournament. was a challenge to keep up, but got the tempo good in under half an hour. played from 9:30 at night to 3:30 in the morning.

the cash tables i bi for 60 x 3. kept getting all in on the turn as between a 65 and 80% fav. held up in every single one of those spots. 7 for 7. nobody runs that good. by session's end all three stacks increased to at least 180.

ran good in the 8 max too. final tabled. key hand was a 3 way all in pre that i 3 bet shoved 22 bigs with jacks. cracked aces and queens. we were already itm, but that gave the stack needed to make a run. came into ft 8/8 and laddered up to 5th from 230 runners. good but not great ft. elim by calling an all in vs my bb w ace ten off. villain had kj off and outflopped me. first piece of runbad the entire session. instaquit and haven't been back. know this feels like a brag, but realize in my heart and mind that any mouth breather is gonna win running like that.

emptied the account and forgot how much i hate the payout shit they put you through. when you bet races online they pay you direct deposit and it's there in a couple days at no cost to the player. don't use krypto or bitcoin, so i can either pay through the nose for moneygrams or i can wait up to 6 weeks for a check. opted for the latter. that was wed the 17th. would be nice to receive before the derby.
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Old 04-11-2021, 05:00 PM   #14
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greetings poker thread. hope all's well and you're playing well/running good. as usual tldr

must admit i almost never play anymore. felt i had to stop. life was untenable as a reg. game got better but at the expense of the relationships in my life. wasn't even a pro. asked myself if it was a fair trade and didn't like the answer.
.
hope you can find some middle ground that allows you to sneak in an occasional game and truth be told i'm trying to find that for myself too.

track collector, at last word, was hitting the two baltimore area casinos pretty consistently and doing well!!
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