Terms of the $500 Poker Challenge: Start with $500 and build your poker bankroll over one year into a substantial bankroll. You may only play live games in casinos and poker rooms; no online or home games.
Uninformed players tend to consider chess a game of skill and poker a game of chance. I disagree. Poker and chess are both games of skill, and at a very high master/championship level, both are games of chance, but with very different tactical characteristics.
The Terms of “the $500 Poker Challenge: Start with $500 and build a substantial poker bankroll within one year. You may only play live games in casinos and poker rooms; no online or home games.
In my last column you heard the sad but true story about how I busted out in Las Vegas—all because I was “too big for my britches” and thought I could ignore my instincts. I want to thank those of you who sent emails with sympathy and tips and especially all of you who had the courage to admit you’ve seriously busted out too.
I just got back from a fantastic trip to Spain. I saw Roman era aqueducts and bridges, 11th century mosques, gardens, palaces, and baths, 13th century Sephardic Jewish synagogues, and dozens of impressive cathedrals. I toured great art museums featuring paintings by Dali, Picasso, Miro, and El Greco. I drove on serpentine roads around four different mountain ranges and past beautiful coastal and white hill towns.
I was playing a $100 live “deep stack” tournament. The blinds began at T25-T50, and we all started with T7,875 chips. (If you’re asking why we started with such an odd number, I can’t help you; I’m still wondering about that myself.) I put deep stack in quotes because while the initial levels did feature true deep stack play, the blinds quickly escalated so that after two hours the play was anything but deep stacked. However, that’s irrelevant for the hands in question.
Linda Mae swung into our local poker room proudly wearing a nice-looking jacket from another casino. We greeted her derisively—and heartily suggested that if she wore the jacket, then she ought to patronize that casino’s poker room.
Our story begins in Vermont, as I prepare for my assault on the Las Vegas poker tables. My friend Joe Verga, an astute businessman, told me I must follow my instincts: “Listening to your instincts means knowing how and when to play the player and knowing when to take your winnings and quit.”
Armed with this advice, and with my bankroll, I travel back to Las Vegas and hook up with another friend; let’s call him Mr. Clean.
The king-high flush is often referred to as the second-nut flush. Assuming a straight flush isn’t possible, and there is no pair on the board, only the ace-high flush can top it. It is a powerful hand but can lose more often than you might think.
Poker Player’s maiden cruise to the Mexican Riviera was a huge success due to a wonderful group of poker players, an amazing group of speakers, and a terrific staff. Mike Caro not only provided an incredible amount of poker wisdom during his seminars but offered to play anyone heads-up from $200-$2,000, which was a big hit.
Don’t announce this to a table full of degenerate poker players, myself included. Between playing and debating whether Brett Favre should retire, the table was calm. That is, until a young player announced loudly, “This is boring. I’m only playing because someone talked me into it and I may as well be watching paint dry!