Grinding in the Far East - Going for Supernova

    • Hajler
      Hajler
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.10.2008 Posts: 270
      Greetings all.

      As I will be going for SN next year I will keep track of my progress in this thread, which will hopefully serve to keep me motivated and on track volume wise. I am not sure how often I will be able to post, but I want to try to do a status update at least once a week.

      I will be playing NL100 FR for now, and looking to move up after I get a decent winning sample at this limit. I have yet to decide how many tables to play, but I will try to find a good balance between profit/volume and concentrating on improving my game. I have been using slightly aggressive BRM so far, taking shots at ~17 BI or so, but I plan to nit it up from here on.


      My poker goals are as follows.

      Short Term:
      [X] Get Platinum Star this month in preparation for SN grind (2010.12.27)
      [ ] Continue improving - Post hands/watch videos
      [ ] Make some cash at NL100
      [X] Become a Diamond Member (2011.1.3)

      Mid Term:
      [ ] Learn tournament poker
      [ ] Reach Supernova
      [ ] Move up to NL200

      Long Term:
      [ ] Move up to NL400 and beyond - Switch to SH?
      [ ] Go to Vegas - Play in the WSOP?
      [ ] Become a Black Member
      [ ] Make Supernova Elite
      [ ] Evaluate the possibility of poker as a long term source of income


      About me:

      I am a 25 year old Canadian living in Japan with my Korean-Chinese wife. I both work and go to school full-time, but I have finished my grad paper and will hopefully be done with school by the end of January. I work at a ramen joint and have also had jobs as a barista, a box sorter, an English teacher, and a cook at McDonald's(lol grinding out cheeseburgers irl) during my 4 years at university.


      About my poker career:

      In 2008 my friend referred me here saying I should get the $50 so we could play some tourneys together. I had no interest in poker, and thought it was a stupid fad, but eventually I ended up taking the test and getting some cash on FT. I played SnGs and learned the basics of the game reading the articles, but eventually went busto due to tilt/playing while intoxicated. That all happened over the course of about 3 or 4 months, and I assumed I was done with poker forever.

      Flash forward to July of this year, my friend sends me $20 to donk off in tourneys with him. We play a few and I also try out rush poker and get interested in poker again, but inevitably I end up with only $5 left. At that point I for some reason decided I would give poker a shot for real, and start over and try to learn how to play properly. I began on NL2 with 2.5BI and had a bunch of ups and downs while playing infrequently due to school/work, but somehow I ended up where I am now at NL100.

      And so my story leaves off. With school soon to be done I plan to devote a lot more time to poker. Here begins the next step in my poker journey.


      Pictures!
      Japan






      China
  • 57 replies
    • Wriggers
      Wriggers
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.07.2009 Posts: 3,250
      $5 to NL100 BR going for SN in 5 months!? That is sick man, keep it up and good luck :D
    • Hajler
      Hajler
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.10.2008 Posts: 270
      Hi Wriggers! Thanks for posting in my blog thingy. :f_biggrin:

      I mostly just got really lucky when taking shots, and I only had to move down twice. I also got a super sick heater on NL50 and moved up after only playing like 15k hands.


      Status update:

      Today was pretty sick overall, but I will let the pictures do the speaking. I feel really good about my play, as I completely avoided tilt and only made one really bad move. I have been making an effort to not look at Table Manager while playing because it tilts me so hard, and it seems to be working.


      Picture 1 - Session report



      After the first session I was like lol I am such a luckbox, but the poker gods saw that all was made right, and then some. At least now I wont be embarassed posting my December graph. :f_cool:


      Picture 2 - Daily garf



      Not bad if I do say so myself. I was very happy that I got my non-SD winnings back above 0, as they have been taking a dive south ever since I moved up. I used to steal 35%+ up to NL50, but so far I have been meeting with way more resistance from regs. For that reason, I have tightened up my stealing range a lot, especially on the SB, and now its at about 26%.

      NL100 seems way way more aggressive than any limit I have played before. There is a lot of 4-bet/5-bet bluffing going on between regs which I certainly didn't see at NL25/NL50. This adds to variance for sure, but overall I like it because I don't have to cower in fear when holding KK and facing a shove anymore. :s_cool:


      In closing I will post my spew of the day! At least it was against a reg so now he probably has me noted as an agro-fish. :f_eek:

      Grabbed by Holdem Manager
      NL Holdem $1(BB) Replayer
      SB ($102)
      BB ($65.70)
      CO ($104)
      Hero ($100)

      Dealt to Hero 6:club: 6:heart:

      fold, Hero raises to $3, SB raises to $10, fold, Hero calls $7

      FLOP ($21) 8:spade: K:heart: 9:club:

      SB bets $13, Hero calls $13

      TURN ($47) 8:spade: K:heart: 9:club: J:spade:

      SB bets $26, Hero raises to $77 (AI), SB calls $51

      RIVER ($201) 8:spade: K:heart: 9:club: J:spade: Q:heart:

      Hero shows 6:club: 6:heart:
      (Pre 20%, Flop 3.3%, Turn 0.0%)

      SB shows K:diamond: K:spade:
      (Pre 80%, Flop 96.7%, Turn 100.0%)

      SB wins $199

      lol so bad.


      Well thats all for now, thanks for reading!
    • ricardo132
      ricardo132
      Bronze
      Joined: 15.12.2010 Posts: 37
      Great thread you got here, i read it from top to bottom.

      I wish you the best of luck.

      Like you did i am starting playing FTP with the free $50. started 10 days ago i have reached 75 dolars playing S&G. But what i've seen for long term is NL100 NL500. I was thinking of going up in the limits of the S&G's. i am playing in $2.25 but i dont feel comfortable playing more than 1 table. you got any tips?

      thanks, keep this thread updated. we could go sharing some news.

      btw, i play poker for a while, i just started over because i think i should learn more of the basics. But i find many donks in this levels.. whatever.

      cheers bro :D
    • Hajler
      Hajler
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.10.2008 Posts: 270
      Hello ricardo, thanks!

      Im not really the best guy to ask about SnGs as my lifetime ROI in the micros is like -10% :f_cool:

      I think you should definitely work on multitabling however, as volume is very important. Just start with 2 tables and slowly work your way up. You could always move down to the $1.20s until you get comfortable, but the increased rake would suck.

      There are donks at every level so you will have to get used to it. The only thing that really changes is the amount of regs competing for the donks money. :f_p:
    • utenosmelynas
      utenosmelynas
      Bronze
      Joined: 07.03.2009 Posts: 286
      Hi Hajler! :) Nice goals!
      Best of luck with them! It'll be interesting to follow how things going for you. :)
    • vonki
      vonki
      Coach
      Coach
      Joined: 18.03.2008 Posts: 6,091
      Nice blog, will probably follow (at least from time to time) :D
    • i5bet72o
      i5bet72o
      Bronze
      Joined: 17.06.2010 Posts: 1,615
      I am also Canadian and I also grind FR so will def follow
    • Hajler
      Hajler
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.10.2008 Posts: 270
      Hello everyone! Thank you for all of the kind replies. :f_love:


      Status Update:

      I played a few sessions since my last update with mixed results. I gave 16~18 tabling a shot just for fun, but found it quite difficult to concentrate on individual tables and remember the flow of the action. A few times I found myself thinking "how did I get in this spot???" which can never be good. :f_frown:

      I am definitely going to stick to 9~12 tables from now on, but I am happy I gave it a try and I also got in some nice volume.


      Picture 1 - Session Report



      As you can see I didn't have very good results. All in all I felt I played very well the first two sessions, but the last one was an epic train wreck. I ended up down 5BI within 700 hands, and had to make a recovery from there. While I did manage to avoid going on tilt which I am happy about, I wasn't playing optimally either. I made a few bad mistakes like C-betting after my bluff squeeze was called, and not folding my big pairs when I should have known I was beat.

      Also I have been doing very badly with AK AI preflop, losing 7 of the last 8 with only 3 being flips. I am not sure if I should re-evaluate how I am playing AK or I am just getting hit with some variance, I am going to look at these hands a bit more in depth when I have time in the next few days.


      Picture 2 - Platinum Star Achieved!



      My first goal has been achieved! Thanks to the sick amount of hands I played yesterday I got Platinum Star earlier than I expected. I am now able to purchase the illusive mens robe in the VIP store! :baller:

      Now that people seem to be back from Christmas I will try to post some hands for evaluating in the next few days. I am going to keep on my holiday grind and will update with my progress again in the next day or so. Thats all for now, thanks for reading! :s_cool:
    • Hajler
      Hajler
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.10.2008 Posts: 270
      Hi again!

      Things have been hectic lately what with the new year approaching and all. This morning I logged into my FT account and found $100 was gone! Unfortunately I was the culprit, playing while drunk at 4 AM the day before. Oh well, my FT money is for donking around anyways. :f_biggrin:


      Status Update:

      I played a bit since my last update, and had both my worst and best sessions for the month, back to back!


      Picture 1 - Session Report



      If only I didn't play that session in the middle! I was very disappointed in myself in that I definitely let my feelings get the better of me and was not playing good poker at all. I had to end my session early which sucked because I had been looking forward to a nice grind.

      After that I took a break, and later I watched some videos. I also remembered that there are strategy articles and since I had never read any of the platinum ones I went through those as well. There was a lot of technical stuff that was really interesting, but hard to understand for a math idiot like me. I am still glad I remembered to read them though.

      Anyways I came back this morning focused and ready to play my A game. Thanks to running good and avoiding making stupid plays I was able to record a very nice session, which was a very good confidence booster as I was understandably down after my last session.


      Picture 2 - Graph



      Well I dug myself into a nice hole, but was able to get out of it and create this beautiful W-shaped graph. I would like to think the the W is for WIN, and is an indication of great things to come. :s_cool:


      Until next time, goodbye, and thanks for reading!
    • Hajler
      Hajler
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.10.2008 Posts: 270
      Happy New Year!

      I hope everyone had a good holiday season. With the new year begins my Supernova race. Here we go!

      Now that December is over I will recap my month. There were a lot of firsts for me in December - I took my first shot at NL100, made Platinum Star for the first time, tried mass-tabling for the first time, and had my first 1k month robbed from me on the last day of the month. :f_biggrin:


      Picture 1 - Session Report



      I played two marathon sessions at the end of the month to get one last stellar and to take advantage of the double SP promotion. As you can see it cost me almost 7BI. :f_cry:

      However, I think I was playing fairly well throughout both sessions, with only a few bad plays in between them.


      Picture 2 - Monthly Report



      My month was very disappointing for me, although I know I should be happy with any positive result. I am probably just feeling down because of my last couple of crappy sessions.

      I have a lot of big leaks I still need to patch and I am going to start working on these more in my coming sessions. I worked on my mindset a lot this month, and while far from perfect I feel I have made a lot of progress in the right direction.


      Picture 3 - Monthly Graph



      Finally, the monthly graph. I concentrated a lot on volume and played way more hands than ever before. Previously I played only 6 tables, but this month I was playing 12 tables for the most part, and I definitely felt a negative effect on my game. While the benefits of grinding out tons of hands are very appealing, I still need to work on a lot of other things first, such as my non-SD winnings, which were so bad I couldn't bring myself to post them. :s_cry:

      For that reason I am going to return to 6 tables(9 max during really fishy hours) for January and work on patching leaks and increasing my win rate. I am also going to look into getting a coach as well, does anyone have any recommendations?

      I am probably not going to put in as much volume this month as I have exams to deal with, so I wont be able to get a real grind going until February. My goal for this month is to play my A game at all times. Wish me luck!
    • Hajler
      Hajler
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.10.2008 Posts: 270
      Greetings all!

      I haven't been able to play as much as I would like, but so far the new year has been going good for me.


      Picture 1 - Session Report



      Only a few short sessions so far, but I have managed to keep with my goal of playing my A game at all times. I have also kept the number of tables low and have been concentrating more, although I did watch the Isildur showdown while playing today. :f_biggrin:

      Today there was the biggest whale ever on my table and he was just destroying everyone. He won EVERY HAND for over 2 rotations and must have took me for a couple of buy-ins just from small pots. I got pretty angry when he insta-quit after beating me with some typical runner runner trash, but managed to calm myself down without going on monkey tilt.


      Picture 2 - Graph



      Go up damn you red line! Up!!! After looking at my play a bit in HEM I think I am playing too passively in the blinds, trying to get to showdown too much. I am going to try to watch some videos and see how other people are dealing with such situations.

      Well thats all for now, thanks for reading.
    • Dendra
      Dendra
      Bronze
      Joined: 28.01.2009 Posts: 479
      haha that's some funny start of your poker career :P from busto to $5 > nl100 progress. wish you best of luck sir!
    • Hajler
      Hajler
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.10.2008 Posts: 270
      Hello again!

      Thanks Dendra! I read your blog and saw that you got Platinum Star at NL2??? That has to be the sickest thing ever, maybe only eclipsed by the guy who played 900,000 $1 DoNs. Congrats. :f_biggrin:

      I had to go shopping with my wife today(Oh, how I love shopping! :s_frown: ) so I haven't got any hands in since my last post. However I reached 2 important milestones today!


      Milestone #1 - Got flamed on my PTR by an NL100 reg!

      I feel so loved! A mass-tabling reg went out of his was to look me up and post an encouraging(?) comment on my profile. I am officially in the big leagues now! :f_cool:


      Milestone #2 - Became a Diamond Member!



      BLING BLANG BLAOW!
      DIAMOND MEMBER IN THE HOUSE!

      Thats right boys and girls, I am officially a Diamond Member. I don't expect it to last long as I am not going to be playing as much this month, but I am happy either way. Hopefully when I have more time in February I will be able to play enough to maintain it permanently. :s_cool:

      Anyways I just wanted to post this because I was very excited about my small success. More poker to come soon!
    • Hajler
      Hajler
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.10.2008 Posts: 270
      Hi everyone,

      I have been busy lately and haven't been able to get in as many hands as I would like. While I was planning on cutting down on volume quite a bit, I still need to at least keep my Platinum Star status to stay on pace for SN, so I might have to put in a few crazy grind sessions at the end of the month. Hopefully I will have some more time in the coming weeks.


      Picture 1 - Session Report



      As you can see I have been running quite well! I have been sticking to my plan of playing less tables and concentrating on playing my A game, so I am very happy with my performance this month so far, minus the low volume. :f_biggrin:

      I have continued playing AK aggressively preflop, which cost me a lot of cash last month, but it is my most profitable hand so far in January. I think I am just getting a lot of variance, both positive and negative, so I am going to keep playing it the same way for now and make adjustments after I get a bigger sample.


      In closing I will leave you with my favorite hand of the year so far! Villain seemed to be a bad player but hadn't done anything incredibly stupid yet at the time of this hand and was playing reasonably tight.

      Grabbed by Holdem Manager
      NL Holdem $1(BB) Replayer
      Hero ($100)
      BB ($85.10)
      UTG ($124)
      UTG+1 ($168)
      UTG+2 ($127)
      CO ($66.35)
      BTN ($101)

      Dealt to Hero A:heart: K:spade:

      fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, Hero raises to $3, BB raises to $9, Hero raises to $25, BB calls $16

      FLOP ($50) A:diamond: 4:spade: 6:spade:

      Hero checks, BB bets $60.10 (AI), Hero calls $60.10

      TURN ($170) A:diamond: 4:spade: 6:spade: Q:spade:

      RIVER ($170) A:diamond: 4:spade: 6:spade: Q:spade: 2:spade:

      Hero shows A:heart: K:spade:
      (Pre 64%, Flop 29.1%, Turn 36.4%)

      BB shows 4:diamond: 6:club:
      (Pre 36%, Flop 70.9%, Turn 63.6%)

      Hero wins $167

      Justice! But seriously, what the hell? When he shoved I was expecting him to show AK or maybe even AA, perhaps with a draw, but obviously there is no way I am ever folding here. When he flipped over 64 I was just like COME ON!!! and was pretty much insta-tilted, but made a quick recovery upon re-sucking-out. :f_o:
    • vonki
      vonki
      Coach
      Coach
      Joined: 18.03.2008 Posts: 6,091
      Congrats on your milestone! :)

      I really like the structured way of your blog. I really like it, esp as I will be going for NL100 within a few months aswell. At least that was the plan, but then SH and not FR.

      Perhaps you'd like to do a sweatsession or something sometime? Just add me on skype if you do =)
    • Wriggers
      Wriggers
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.07.2009 Posts: 3,250
      That hand is sick, I was reading through it and by the flop I was putting him on AK or a tilted KK or QQ that was shoving because the A came :D Who the hell calls a 4bet for 1/4 of their stack with 64o!? :D
    • Hajler
      Hajler
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.10.2008 Posts: 270
      Hello again all, thanks for your support!

      @vonki

      I'm glad you like my blog. :D A sweat would be cool but probably not possible until I finish school due to my crappy time zone. It sucks because the fishiest times are like 4AM for me. :(


      I played a bit since my last update, with pretty horrible results.

      Picture 1 - Session Report



      As you can see I have had a few really bad sessions. Its just been the typical stuff you get when you are running bad, not getting action with big hands, getting too much with air, etc. I feel like I played alright for the most part but find that I start getting spewy after a while of constant losing. Reviewing my hands I see that almost all of my losses in medium pots were from me trying to make something happen when it just wasn't necessary, and it really added up to a lot of money. What is more frustrating though is that the only big pots I have won have been from badly played hands, IE shoving 94s in BB vs SB and sucking out against AK. :f_cry:

      Oh well this is all standard stuff, I have had enough 10BI swings to not be too worried about it, although as always it feels like crap. I'm going to take a day or two off just to study and think more about my game, as that has helped me a lot in the past.


      Picture 2 - Monthly Graph



      Although you could mistake it for a majestic green mountain, the above is actually my graph for this month so far! From hot to not in just 3k hands. I was only like 5 or 6 BI away from a possible NL200 shot, but it looks like I will have to postpone such plans for the time being. Either way I know I have a ton of leaks that I really really need to fix before I can move up anyways.


      Here is a pretty funny hand against a huge fish from my latest session. I was getting ready to sit out when this happened:

      Grabbed by Holdem Manager
      NL Holdem $1(BB) Replayer
      SB ($42.85)
      Hero ($110)
      UTG ($45.25)
      UTG+1 ($101)
      UTG+2 ($51.20)
      MP1 ($145)
      CO ($187)
      BTN ($100)

      Dealt to Hero T:spade: 9:heart:

      fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, SB calls $0.50, Hero raises to $4, SB calls $3

      FLOP ($8) 9:club: 5:heart: 3:heart:

      SB checks, Hero bets $5, SB raises to $38.85 (AI), Hero calls $33.85

      TURN ($85.70) 9:club: 5:heart: 3:heart: 2:heart:

      RIVER ($85.70) 9:club: 5:heart: 3:heart: 2:heart: A:heart:

      SB shows 4:heart: 4:diamond:
      (Pre 50%, Flop 13.6%, Turn 22.7%)

      Hero shows T:spade: 9:heart:
      (Pre 50%, Flop 86.4%, Turn 77.3%)

      SB wins $82.70

      I actually didn't realize I had lost until I did a session review later. I just saw I made a flush on the river and thought I won it. :f_biggrin:

      Bastard gets a steel wheel on his PTR too. X(


      Well thats all for now, hopefully I get some rungood soon!
    • justkyle88
      justkyle88
      Bronze
      Joined: 07.05.2008 Posts: 7,596
      GL, I'm also going for SN aswell.
    • Hajler
      Hajler
      Bronze
      Joined: 21.10.2008 Posts: 270
      Greetings all!

      Thanks justkyle88, good luck with your SN chase as well. :f_cool:


      Status Update:

      So I took a small break as planned which worked out pretty well because I haven't had much time to play anyways this week. I got a few short sessions in today and yesterday, but I am way off pace this month.


      Picture 1 - Session Report



      Look at that volume! I haven't been getting in any hands but at least I have been winning, which is always good when you can only play a few hands as having to quit down a BI or two after like 200 hands sucks.


      Picture 2 - Monthly Graph



      Well I have cooled down and managed to turn my graph around a bit, although this is mostly just from running hot. I have however been completely playing my A game during my short sessions so I am happy at the moment.

      Losing another 10BI finally motivated me to seek some outside help, so to I decided to shell out some cash and try BogdanPSs database analysis service. Hopefully he will be able to help me out and spot a bunch of leaks.


      In closing I will leave you with my feel-good hand of the week. Villain has limp/called and then donk shoved on the flop or turn 3 hands in a row at this point.

      Grabbed by Holdem Manager
      NL Holdem $1(BB) Replayer
      SB ($48)
      BB ($50)
      UTG ($119)
      Hero ($132)
      UTG+2 ($101)
      MP1 ($121)
      MP2 ($212)
      CO ($103)
      BTN ($100)

      Dealt to Hero K:club: Q:diamond:

      UTG raises to $2, Hero calls $2, fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, fold

      FLOP ($5.50) 4:heart: 5:heart: Q:spade:

      UTG bets $1, Hero calls $1

      TURN ($7.50) 4:heart: 5:heart: Q:spade: 2:spade:

      UTG bets $14, Hero raises to $129 (AI), UTG calls $102 (AI)

      RIVER ($240) 4:heart: 5:heart: Q:spade: 2:spade: K:diamond:

      UTG shows Q:club: A:heart:
      (Pre 74%, Flop 88.1%, Turn 93.2%)

      Hero shows K:club: Q:diamond:
      (Pre 26%, Flop 11.9%, Turn 6.8%)

      Hero wins $237

      Victory! When he called and I saw he actually had a hand I couldn't believe my luck. He totally slow rolled me too, using his time-bank down to the last second, so I can only say he deserved it. Interestingly, just a few hands later I had AQ on a QXXX board and called a shove from a shorty, and he showed KQ. He missed his K though. :f_p: