Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Are you looking to Play Poker for a Living?

Ever since Poker hit the airwaves and has been broadcasted on the television with the likes of the Travel Channel, ESPN in the states covering the WPT and the World Series of Poker the likes of all young people across college campuses everywhere and even those folks that tend to play at their local Brick and Mortar all of a sudden see a possibility that they too can join forces with the best players in the world and play poker for a living.  Is this the right attitude to have or not?  Well I say if you think you’ve got a shot at doing why not go for it , who am I to tell someone they shouldn’t pursue their dreams.  Realistically anyone in the world who has the time and money to invest in this game could potentially become a fantastic poker player.

The players that make a living off playing poker do so because they feel it is a much better job than what they could potentially be doing.  Sure who wouldn’t want to play poker for a living, you are able to set your own timetables and have absolutely no one to report to.  Except your wife if you get on a losing streak.  Even that being said it is not as easy as the guys on television make it look.  Take golf for an example, if you watch golf on television they make it look like the game is so easy and there is so much money involved.  What a grind that profession is.  I have been a professional golfer for about ten years now, playing the mini-tours and a few Canadian Tour events and I’ll be the first one to tell you that this game is the hardest game on the planet to succeed at.  I can compare it to poker in the sense that you have to constantly be mentally sharp at all times as soon as you lose your mental edge you might as well pack it in, because you’re done. For all of the young aspiring poker players out there I’ll say this: get your education, get a job and play poker as much as you can.  Once you have competed in a few tournaments and improved your game by playing online poker and you are starting to feel it than maybe consider going pro and doing nothing but playing poker.  Either way its gonna be a tough living but if you make it and stay on top of it, man oh man what a life.  Good luck to all those aspiring poker professionals. For those that are looking to improve their games via the online poker route use this BONUS CODE for Poker Party 20BR

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Sunday, September 25, 2005

Football Sunday Week 3

Another week has gone by and I’m still alive in the suicide pool.  I can thank the Colts of Indianapolis for that.  It was a little too close for comfort but either way I’m still movin on and alive for a chance at the 5 grand.  This weeks pick is America’s team the Dallas Cowboys.  They are taking on the San Francisco 49ers.  Should be a decent game but I look for the Cowboys to keep me alive.  Another full day of stuffing our facia with pizza and again some more online poker being played.  

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Saturday, September 24, 2005

Another home game with the Crew

Well its a Saturday night and the crew is getting together to play a serious game of poker. Most of these guys are good players and play a lot of online poker. Our buddy Fitzy just picked up a real nice ten seat poker table and we are ready to start poundin mad pints and start playin with the chips. We get to his house and we fire up a barbeque and we have a few beers and other random stuff before we actually sit down and get this game underway.

We played our regular $20 buy-in tournament with the blinds consistently being raised either everytime someone gets knocked out or every 15 minutes. We tend to procrastinate a lot in these home games cause a lot of the boys like to hack darts and there is no smoking inside the house so everyone makes there way to the garage. So this definitely is a reason for the longer home games but we don’t really care cause we are always havin a good time. On this night I was out in fifth place and really didn’t get much going at all throughout the night. All in all not too brad of a night, got pretty gunned, told a few stories, and had a few laughs. All for $20, can’t complain and I did stay at a Holiday Inn express last night. Hopefully I’ll fair a little better next time and get in the money (i've kind of been on a cold streak of late and i'm lookin to turn that around ASAP).

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Friday, September 23, 2005

A Day of Online Poker

So today I felt like it was a day I was going to dedicate strictly to playing some online poker at Poker Party. This is definitely my favorite place to play since there are so many games and players online all the time. Hence it is the biggest online poker room around (Poker Party bonus code 25BR). I had a string of consecutive runs where I was knocking out a lot of players and then it was my turn to take a hit. I had my favorite hand of pocket kings and I decided I was going to take this pot. The flop comes and there is nothing higher than a 10 showing on the board. This one player bets like he just hit the set, but I’m wondering if he had pockets before why wouldn’t he have bet before for the flop. So, I called his bet since I had pocket kings and the only thing right now that scared me was a set. So, the turn comes and a queen comes up. So, I make a bet and he thinks about it for awhile and then he eventually calls. The river comes and it’s a 7. He then bets and I move him all-in. He calls it after a little while and the cards are flipped and he had the 67. So, the bastard hits the 7 on the river for two pair and I’m eliminated. Just another frustrating day at the tables on Poker Party.

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Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Cottage heaven Day 2

Today started off real nice, we fired up some food (bacon and eggs) and headed right for the dock.  It is a real nice day out today and we had planned on making it a full day of tubing on the boat.  For those that haven’t gone tubing it is an absolute rockin’ good time.  Although make sure you have a good driver on the boat when you go.  The dude that always rides our boat has got mad skills and he’ll make guys go flyin off the tube like there’s no tomorrow.  

"There we are givener on the tubes"

We decided we’d head out onto the lake and take on the high waves.  It is a real rocky day out there but we toughed it out.  We hopped into the water and holy shizzit was it freezing in there.  We grabbed onto the tube and there were some serious spills.  Guys just flying off the tube left, right, and center.  It was definitely a funny sight, but in my case I was one of the guys being sent flyin through the air off the tube and crashing like i've never crashed before.  We spent some time out there and then we made our way back to the dock and time to play some dominoes.  We set up shop on the dock, brought down the bbq, more beers, dominoes, and we had the tunes pumpin.

We played dominoes for awhile until it got dark out and then it was time to move our party back inside.  Some of the guys were gettin a little tired (I guess from bein in the sun all day and stuff) so they set up shop on the couches, so the kid and my boy fitzy decided we’d play some heads up poker.  We played a bunch of games (each game for $5 buckeroos) and we would eventually break even and we went to work on waking some of the other dudes up.  After a couple guys took their power naps they got up and were ready to go.  We invented a poker drinking game on this night(surprise, surprise).  What we did was each guy would get 10 chips and we would play a normal game of Texas Hold’em.  What would happen was that everytime you would make a bet however many chips you would put into the pot is the number of drinks you would have to have if you lost the hand.  For example, if you went all-in (10 chips) and you lost you would have to pound a full beer.  If you were to bet 5 chips and lost you would have to pound half a beer.  We played this for hours and hours and the amount of beer that was consumed was unbelievable (we were well on our way to getting shitefaced).  At times guys would go all-in in three hands in a row and lose.   How does pounding three beers in a matter of ten minutes make you feel when you’ve already been givener for like 8 hours?  Anyways, it’s always good to switch up the game of poker and we found this to be a great way to do it.  You should try it out if you are looking for a different way to play Hold’em from time to time. So, we would eventually shut er down for the night and we would be leaving the cottage in the morning. We would be getting back to reality and get back to work after a crazy week and a half.      

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Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Another Boys Getaway

Well so much for recovery time from Vegas, today we are on our way to our buddies cottage for two nights.  There is going to be five of us dudes chillin on the dock, drinkin beers, playing poker, tubing, and mad chill time on the boat.  These are the days where you love hangin with your boys.  We get up to the cottage and crack open our first cold one and start shootin the breeze.  Instantly guys want to go on the boat and take a spin around the lake.  The weather is a little chilly but Not too Brad.  We fill our cooler up and all of us pile into the boat.  We were out there for about an hour or so and we came back and instantly got out the poker chips and fired up a little five man winner takes all poker tourney.  It’s a twenty dollar buy-in with no re-buys.  The first game lasted about an hour or so and unfortunately I finished in second spot and lost to a damn good player who flat out outplayed me (i'm not afraid to admit that and I did hear about it the rest of the night).  

So, at this point we decided its time to fire up the bbq and get ready to stuff ourselves full of chicken, burgers and some steaks.  You can’t go wrong with that set up.  Some of the boys brought up there laptops to take care of some business while we were on our getaway but pretty much the only action these laptops were seeing was the Poker Party software.  Guys are so enthused about playing online poker that they can’t get away from it.  Later on in the evening we fired up another little poker tourney and this time I was busted out early on; pocket aces again.  I swear this hand is my demise, I can’t remember the last time I had this hand and actually won something with it.  I think I could do more with the goddamn hammer (7,2).  Anyways, another day and some more poker stories to pass your way.  Bye the way, we did consume inordinate amounts of alcohol again and I’m gonna need some more time to recover now (this past week and a half has been an absolute gong show for the kid).   It's all about havin a good time, and that’s what we always seem to do.  

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Monday, September 19, 2005

Still Recovering from Las Vegas

Man oh man they say that Vegas will do certain things to people once they get back home and this is so bloody true.  It is three days since I have been back from Vegas and I still feel like I got hit by a bus.  I am typically pretty good with not getting hangovers and things of that sort but this is a different type of hangover, it’s a thing I now refer to as getting Vegased.  The feeling is a sense of groggyness (I guess that comes with the territory of drinking for five days straight for about twelve hours a day) and I can’t wait to get my head back to normal.  I took the whole weekend off and spent most of my time recuperating even on Saturday night when we had the family over to my house for my birthday and I could barely keep my eyes open.  The kid felt real bad but everyone understood that the kid got Vegased.  I talked to my buddy on Sunday afternoon and he was telling me how much he won on Poker Party the night before and I was so tempted to fire up the laptop and fire up the software but football was on and the couch was right there, so I had to pass on playing online poker today and settle for mad football and couch time. For those that want to play at Poker Party use this bonus code 25BR. Hopefully it’ll help ya build up a bankroll, until next time.  The Kid’s outta here.

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Sunday, September 18, 2005

Football Sunday Week 2

A quick update here as I am a part of an NFL suicide pool for the season.  For this weeks pick I'm goin with the Indianapolis Colts. Last week we won our pick by taking the Redskins over Da Bears.  A pretty good pick to use up that early in the season.  Anyways, hopefully I stay on a roll as the winner picks up a cool 5 grand.  I’ll keep you updated. Football Sundays are spent in our buddies basement and it’s the usual festivities in there. Order mad pizza, play online poker (at Poker Party of course) and then eat some more.What else could you ask out of a Football Sunday.

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Thursday, September 15, 2005

Leaving Las Vegas

The day has finally come and we are heading out of Vegas. We pick up our cab outside of Caesar's Palace and we are on our way to the airport. Its not too long of a cab ride but at this point there are four hurting units sitting in this cab and just waiting for the flight from hell. Today is the kid’s actual birthday and I haven’t felt like this in a long time. I’ve been Vegased. So we get to the airport and there is a mad lineup at the ticket counter it takes us about a half hour to forty five minutes to get our bags checked and then we head up stairs to sit at our gate. The worst thing was is that we were there like two hours before our flight and feeling like absolute crap and then we get word that our flight has been delayed another forty five minutes. So I headed down to the magazine rack and picked up the latest copy of Cardplayer and did some reading about the poker world. With their being wireless capabilities in the airport my one buddy figured why not fire up Poker Party on the computer and play some online poker and get some more poker hands in (Poker Party bonus code 20BR).

"Oh God here is our beauty of a plane but the way I feel at this point who really gives a shit."

We were finally allowed to board the plane and I was ready to just shut er down as soon as I got to my seat. However, we flew Southwest Airlines and I will never ever fly this airline again. It has to have the smallest bloody seats around and there is absolutely no room for me to move my seat back, plus the fact that there was a two seater (a big man that is forced by the airline to buy two seats for the plane) behind me and I had no chance of reclining my chair. So as far as things were shaping up it wasn't going to be an ideal flight home, that's for sure. So now the engines fire up and we start cruising down the runway when the pilot comes on the speakers and says that there are about 15 planes waiting to take off ahead of us. So we will be in another 45 minute delay. Man can this day get any worse, what a birthday!

With no sleep and absolutely no food on the plane (did I mention that i really dislike Southwest Airlines)we finally touch down in Buffalo and we still have an hour drive until I get into the confines of my bed. The drive didn’t take that long and we were havin some fun in the Honda Element and reliving some of our Vegas stories. We finally arrive and I just dropped my bags in my room and crashed.

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Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Vegas ExpeditionDay5

So another late rise for the boys, and first things first its time to eat. We go and grab a bite to eat and head right to the pool for a little while. Alright last day in Vegas we have to take advantage of what we have. So we were at the pool for about an hour and a half as it was getting real hot out there. We headed up to the room and got ready to find a patio to go and chill at. We had a couple of beers and we were shootin the shit on the patio and we decided it was time to go and gamble. We made our way over to the Flamingo Hotel & Casino and checked into their poker room but they were full and we threw our names on the waitlist. While we were waiting we decided we’d go over to the board and play some video poker and have a few drinks (surprise, surprise). Cob and I were catchin some serious cards on the video poker and we ended up winning like fifty bucks on it (it would be real solid if somehow you can play online poker at the casino while waiting, atleast i could have been working on my Poker Party bankroll).

A shot of the casino from the strip

At one point though Cob headed over to the washroom and on his way he saw the slot machines so he decided what the hell I’ll play the five dollar slots. The guy goes ahead and pulls the One Arm Bandit and all of a sudden lights and sirens are goin off, he ended up winning $750 and was loving it. What a sweet pick up that was. He goes and cashes it in and then the four of us head over to the Roulette tables since the poker room is still full. So all of us put down $100, and we all either broke even or left there with some winnings. I struggled early playing my favorite part of the table (the second quadrant) and I was down to my last $20, when all of a sudden I started hitting my numbers and I brought it all the way back to $125. So after all that I ended up with $25 extra in my pocket. It was fun though. Now its time to get ready to go out and celebrate the Kid’s birthday. We have a table reserved at Tangerine which is located in Treasure Island. It is the place to be on a Wednesday night in Vegas. We arrive at Tangerine at 11:00pm and the lineup is huge but luckily we had our table taken care of and we were able to get right on in there.

"Here is a shot of Tangerine during the day and from the Strip, Solid Spot and some great camera work"

Now this club is real small for those that have not been there. Almost uncomfortable small as there is really no place to move. Its wall to wall people. Even the tables are so tight that it’s a pain in the ass. It was a pretty good night all around and again we saw a few celebs in the crowd. Dan Akroyd made a cameo appearance in the VIP section. As did Poker Pro Chris “Jesus” Ferguson, now keep in mind this guy is playing in the WSOP Tournament Circuit event and he was out last night at Pure and tonight at Tangerine. Now he came into the VIP section of the club and he was just helping himself to the Vodka and he looked to be havin a real good time. I took the time to talk with him and let him know about our poker site http://www.burnandturn.com and he was super nice and cool. I got my picture taken with him as well (see below). He actually ended up winning the event Thursday afternoon after giving er all night at the club. Not too bad of a life being a professional poker player. Giver all night and then show up at the poker tables and walk away with $350,000. Not too Brad.

"Here's the Kid hangin with Chris "Jesus" Ferguson"

So Fitzy and I left Tangerine and we were walking back to Caesar’s from Treasure Island when we encountered a very interesting scenario that probably could only happen in Vegas. We were walking down the strip when we passed this group of people and this guy comes up to us and says “hey you guys interested in making a little bit of extra money”, well like most people when someone says that you tend to want to know what this is all about. It was a little weird but I knew Vegas is a little bit crazy but this was off the charts. The guy says to us “would you guys be interested in starring in a featured porn flick”, I look at my buddy Fitzy in complete astonishment and then we instantly break out in laughter as we were both amazed at what the hell just happened. The guy then says look there is the girl over there, and she’s sitting on the wall and I still couldn’t believe what was going on. Remember, both of us had been drinking all night and then we are approached with this proposition. We promptly said no, but I mean anything in Vegas will never ever surprise me anymore. This was another good story that we would have to come back to the hotel room and let our other buddies know about since they missed out again! So our last night in Vegas and we had a pretty good birthday bash and its probably a good thing that this trip is coming to an end. It’s always a little depressing when your trips come to an end but I think all of us could agree that we were glad to be going back home and getting back to reality.

Poker Party bounus code 20BR

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Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Vegas ExpeditionDay4

Oh man, here we go again! After making the decision to stay for a couple more days and givener for about twelve hours it was time for the boys to take a nap and try to recover for the next couple of days. The plan for the afternoon after our nap was to check out the pool at Caesar's and then we would head back to Imperial Palace for the evening poker tournament which starts at 8:00pm. Alright, we headed down to the pool and it was an absolutely stunning sight. Its gotta be the biggest pool I’ve ever seen, the only problem with it is that there seems to be a lot of old men there that like to wear speedos. What a sight that is? There are something’s in life that should be banned and that is definitely one of them. In general, the pool was pretty quiet so that provided us the opportunity to just chill and catch some rays for the first time in three days, since we’ve been locked up either in our hotel room (recovering from the night before), or we have been in the casinos during the days.

Not Too Brad of a Pool

We are off to the Imperial Palace for another run in the tourney. There was only room for two players to get into the tourney so the boys that made it to the final table in the previous tourney are gonna go for it again. Fitz and I are gonna be railbirds for a bit and then we are gonna make our way downstairs to the roulette tables. The boys were making a pretty good run in the tourney and they were looking to earn their way to a second consecutive final table. My buddy Cob had a big hand and he got busted out of the tourney in 15th place when he lost to a set of 6’s, when the 6 hit on the river. He had pocket 10’s and looked real good to cleaning up a big pot. Our other buddy was also eliminated before the final table. All in all another pretty good showing by the boys in the poker room. We then proceeded to set up shop at the Roulette table in Imperial and we didn’t have the luck that we had had at good ol O’Sheas. So we decided we’d make our way over there. On the way out of the Casino we saw Scotty Nguyen walkin arm and arm with a young diva. As he walked by us I said hey Scotty how ya doin, and in typical Scotty Nguyen fashion he proceeded to give me a hand shake with his customary “Hey whats’ up Baby”, and we loved it. At that point I wish I had the camera to grab a photo of him, but I’m sure we’ll be back and we’ll probably see him again. He was pimped out in his gear and he loved busting out “Whats’ up Baby”.

The four of us then made our way over to O’Sheas for some more action at the Roulette table. This is where Fitzy and I spent numerous hours the previous night, and we were now known by the dealers and more importantly by the Pit Boss. My buddy Cob, now all of a sudden came to the table and dropped some nice coin and that definitely grabbed the attention of the Pit Boss. Better yet, the guy was on absolute fire at the table. In a matter of minutes he was up huge and there were eyes all over the crew. Three of us were winning at the table and we were getting all fired up. We were ordering our customary RBV's (Red bull vodkas) and they were given us the adrenaline to keep on going. We would eventually head outta there and go back to our room to get ready for the night’s festivities. We began playing some online poker while waiting for everybody to get showered and changed. Poker Party has treated me fairly well of late so i was loving getting another shot too add to my bankroll. However, it was my turn to get ready and i was still in the tourney when i had to get ready so i passed the game over to my one buddy who had built up a solid chip stack for me, but he would eventually get eliminated. Ah well (Poker Party bonus code 25BR).

Tonight we are going back to Pure, and we had another table set up for us. This time we had the table looking over the dance floor. This table was awesome. Again we had our supply of beers and vodka. I keep wondering to myself when am I actually going to slow down on this drinking business, but then I thought forget it how many times are you in Vegas, chillin in the best night club in the city, and a mad surplus of unlimited drinks. The kid found it tough to slow down and at this point there was no stopping me on this night. Fitzy and I were givener (which pretty much was the theme for the week) in Pure and the scenery on this night was as top notch as it gets. We actually saw Chris “Jesus” Ferguson strolling through the club in his customary
Full Tilt poker black button down shirt and his cowboy hat. He was workin his magic on the dance floor and he looked to be havin a good time. I’ll tell you that much. Eventually it was time for us to leave the bar and it was still early in Fitz and the kid's time so we felt we would go and hit up O’Sheas for another round at the roulette tables.

So we roll into the casino and we see our lucky dealer so we definitely felt tonight had potential to be a good night. Well we were a little wrong in that assessment as we didn’t do that great and we cut into our poker money. We lost a little bit and decided it was time to head back to our little bar in Caesar’s and pay a visit to our bartender bud Wild Bill. As we approached the bar Wild Bill got a big smile on his face and promptly greeted us with a Not too Brad (if anyone goes to Caesar’s look for Wild Bill behind the bar and say Not too Brad he loves it). Again there were Tute’s everywhere and its fun watching the old men in action. On this night there was one guy who was so gunned he had three of them with him and he could barely stand up, the poor guy probably got robbed blind. So we chilled with Wild Bill for a little while and we eventually made our way up to the room to shut er down. Another long day and night in Vegas and we still have another full day and night ahead of us. The last night in Vegas is the Kid’s Birthday. Look out, its gonna be a gong show.

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Monday, September 12, 2005

Vegas ExpeditionDay3

Its Monday morning and I have those good ol feelings you get after another full night of givener. Today is our last day in Vegas and we have to make it a memorable one. We woke up at around 11:00 and I have a nice groggy feeling in my head but it’s not gonna slow this kid down for his last day in Vegas. We are entering a poker tournament today at 1:00 at the Imperial Palace. I wasn’t quite sure how I was going to fair in this event since my head was a little out of it, but we are all pretty pumped about playing in a live tournament. There are four of us who are entering to play and our two buddies who pulled the ultimate surprise on us are going to be railbirds for the event. We go to the registration desk and get our designated seats. There are about 75 guys entered in the tournament and the top ten (final table) all get some cake for their efforts. For those that have never played a tournament at Imperial Palace it is extremely well organized and it is kept moving at a tremendous pace. I get seated at table 4 and my seat is right next to the dealer. I wasn’t extremely happy about my seat but it’ll have to do. I was a little nervous at the start as my hands were a little shaky (now I wasn’t sure if that was from nerves or from the 12 Red Bull and Vodkas the night before, i'm guessin the latter). So its 1:00 and we hear the famous term “Shuffle up and Deal”. We are on our way. I start out on the button, and I had to wait a few hands before I got too see any action. I wasn’t gettin that many great hands to start with, but I will admit I was playin pretty tight since it was my first live tourney in a while and I didn’t want to do anything stupid real early. I played a few hands and really didn’t get anything out of it, and all of a sudden blinds are increasing and my chip stack is slowly deteriorating. There is one re-buy in this event but I wasn’t planning on having to go that route this early.

I finally got dealt a fairly strong hand and this one guy at the table has already been knocked out and is now playing with his re-buy chips. Now, this guy is real aggressive and pretty much plays any hand (ala Gus Hansen, without the skills though, but he thought he was Gus). Anyways, he goes all-in again and I finally have a good hand and now if I call I’m all-in. I felt that I had the strongest hand at the time (I had KQ diamonds) especially with the way this guy has been playing thus far. I call him. He flops over a pair of 6’s. So I’m the underdog at this point in time. The flop comes up and it brings the J28, so nothing for me and I’m still the dog at this point. I’m startin to get that feelin that I could be outta here and then the turn card comes up and Boom! There it is the Kand I get real pumped as I have just been given my second wind and the river card comes up and it’s the 10and I’m still alive and just doubled up. Nice. From there I started too feel it a little bit more, and I started getting involved in some pretty good pots.

My one buddy has been eliminated and he thought it was a good time for him to go and visit the Roulette tables and try and earn some of his cake back down there. There are still three of us remaining and with some people being knocked out of the tourney they start moving people around to different tables. And what do you know but my good bud Cob is seated at my table. We loved it. There are about 40 people left and all three of us have chip stacks that are higer than the average so we are doing pretty well. I have now busted out a couple of other players and I’m startin to get more and more confident as this tourney continues on. I had another big hand, and hear is how she went down. I’m in the big blind and I get the KJ of diamonds, the action is on me now and two guys have gone all-in and I decide to call them. We all flip up our cards one guy has the Hilton Sisters (Pocket Queens), and the other guy has K10. I’m hopin for a King or mad diamonds to come up. The flop comes and its 1037, so nothing great for me but there is a diamond on the board. The turn comes and it’s a J. I’ve now got a pair of Jacks so my outs have increased a little bit but I’ve got to hit a Jack or a King or I’m gonna be real shortstacked. The River comes and I hit the King. That was huge took out two players on the river and I was lovin it. Now there are 27 players left in the tourney and I’m in the top five. I started playin a lot more hands and really wasn’t improving on my stack if anything it was starting to decrease.

We now have three tables left and I get moved to the table right against the ropes, at this time there are more and more railbirds showin up, and I’m startin to have a couple of beers and really havin a good time (that’s the good thing about vegas, when you’re at the tables beers and any drink are only costin ya a buck, real nice). I’ve got a couple of buddies behind me at the ropes and they are havin a good time watchin their buddies make a move in the tourney. The two other guys are also doing real well, and again my buddy Cob has been moved to the same table as me. We both look at each others chips and are lovin it. Almost down to two tables remaining when this hand came up. I get dealt pocket aces and I’m on the button. Everyone puts in their chips to call the big blind and the guy to my right decides he’s goin all-in. I call his all-in and that puts me all-in. My boys behind me are lovin the call and especially when he turns over pocket 8’s, I loved throwin my pocket aces on the table. The railbirds all get a little excited because this is a huge pot. I win this hand I’m the chip leader with twenty players left. The flop comes and nothing for either one of us, the turn again nothing and now I’m getting real pumped. Then the river card and can you believe it the guy hits the 8 on the goddamn river and I’ve been welcomed to SeeYouLaterVille. Goddamn it!! I’m out of the tourney in 21st place. I was real pissed as I thought I was going to make a charge in the tourney. Anyways, I had a real good run and hey that’s poker. You win some and you lose some. I don’t remember winning a hand with pocket aces. This happens to me a lot when i play either in home games or when i play online poker at Poker Party. So many beats I have taken with that bloody hand. So now I will partake in being a railbird and cheer on my other two buds.

We are down to the final table and we’ve got two of our buddies in there. My buddy Cob is the short stack (one guy has already been eliminated), and he goes all-in with pocket 10’s. He gets called with pocket 8’s (by the same clown that knocked me out). Here comes the flop and an 8 comes up and with no help on the turn or the river my buddy Cobster is eliminated in 8th place. So far pocket 8’s have eliminated two members of the crew.

So we are down to one crew member left and we are all pullin for him now. He continues to play well and has now moved into the top five. Another player gets eliminated and we are down to three players. My buddy is short stacked at this point, and he’ s in the small blind. He gets A3 and he decides he’s going all-in. One guy quickly calls him and he flips over pocket Jacks. All our bud can hope for is an Ace and he didn’t get it but what a solid performance for him in his first live tournament ever. He collected $500 for his efforts. All in all it was a fun experience and Imperial Palace really puts together a good tournament. So, poker is finished for now and its time to go get some food and get ready to set up shop for the Monday Night Football Game.

Again, we have our nice parlay ticket riding on this game, and the Eagles have to come through for us. We set up shop in our seats and we are amongst mad amounts of Eagles fans (it seems everywhere I go no matter where it is if there’s an Eagles game there are swarms and swarms of Eagle’s fans). They always make for a fun night of football watching. Anyways, we were extremely disappointed with the result of the game as the Eagles lost and we lost our ticket. Surprise! Surprise!. So, its time to go back up to the hotel and get ready to go out for our last night. The two guys that made the surprise had to go to the airport as they were flying out tonight, and there were two other guys who were tired and thought they were getting sick so they were gonna shut er down for the night and spend their last night in Vegas laying in bed. Man oh man, fitzy and I weren’t lovin that call too much. We weren’t going to let that stop us though from havin a great last night. So Fitzy and I decide to check out the casino across the street; O’Sheas.

A picture of our hangout from the strip

O’Sheas is this real small casino but we thought we’d have some fun in this place. Fitzy decides to throw down $100 and gets some chips to play roulette. At this time I was just sittin there watchin my bud play and I was getting into the Red Bull’s (we call them RBV’s), and I’m startin to feel it a little bit. This real drunk guy comes to the table and Fitzy and I start chattin him up and we are havin a blast with this guy. He is just throwin his chips on everything and anything and he can barely keep his eyes open, slurring his words. I never realized how much fun it was too just sit there and chat with an old drunk guy before but this was soo much fun. I decide its time for me to get in on the roulette action so I throw down $100 and get my chip stack sent my way. At this time its our goal to win as much money on the roulette table and get Frank to keep on sayin “Its Not Too Brad”. We were well on our way to getting shitfaced and we were getting real sore stomaches from all the laughter that was going on at this table. So, our drunk friend Frank had enough and it was time for him too stumble down the street. It was quite the sight watching this guy get up from the Roulette table and try to walk out of the casino. He’s gotta be one of the casino’s favorite guests as he was up about $500 and after continuously drinking he proceeded to lose it all and probably lost a little time on his life.

So, it was time to find the next person to have some fun with. At this point we were enjoying our little game and we had to find the next one. It didn’t take long as we locate a man with his wife and his daughter, all of them stumbling. Again another sight to be seen. We go to the can to relieve some of our alcohol and as we come out we locate the man by himself sitting at the bar. We immediately make our way to set up shop next to him at the bar and this guy was completely annhiliated. Perfect!!. So, we order a few more beers at the bar and start shootin the shit with Big Mark. He promptly introduces us to his daughter and his wife. This was a family that I am glad I wasn’t a part of. But for this night it was the perfect family. We sat at the bar with Big Mark and his family for about two and a half hours and it hands down was the funniest two and a half hours of my life. Fitzy and I could not stop laughing and this guy was loving it soooo much. He was busting out Not Too Brad’s all over the place (for those that are not comprehending Not Too Brad, I’ll give you some insight on it. My first name is Brad and instead of saying Not Too Bad, we get people to say Not Too Brad).

Big Mark invited us to go to his boat the following day and go boating with him and his family. Unfortunately for us we were flying home tomorrow and we had to pass up on the opportunity. He was a lot of fun to chill with and he definitely topped our list of characters that we met in Vegas. So, Fitzy and I decided we’d head back to Caesar’s and maybe have one more beer at the small bar by the main entrance in Caesar's. It’s about 3:30 now and we have had a great time so far and we ordered a couple of Coors Lights to finish off the night. Well we didn’t exactly have just one beer we ended up being there for another three hours and continued to giver.

One of our hang outs in Caesar's

We were being approached by mad Tutes at this point and we were getting a kick out of this scene. Dirty Tutes just crawlin all over the place trying to attach themselves too anyone who was interested. At the bar we ended up meeting Wild Bill (the bartender at this bar) and he was pretty funny. He didn’t understand us at times (probably b/c we had about 20-25 drinks in us and we definitely had some Jibba Jabba comin out of us) but again we had Wild Bill busting out some more Not too Brad’s. Alright, its time to go upstairs to the room (time is now 6:15) and we go stumbling into the room and we awake our other buds who had crashed for the night. At this point we are real gunned and thought we’d cause a disturbance to these tired dudes. We came in and told the boys about our night and they were lovin all the jokes, at this point they both got up and wanted to giver. So now, its about 7:15 in the morning and fitzy and I have been givener since about 11:00 pm and these guys want to start it up.

We made our way back downstairs and headed to the Vegas Strip. We found ourselves at the Bellagio bar at 8:00am and we started havin more Red Bull’s doing shots and oh man it was getting a little sloppy for Fitzy and I but we were lovin it. At this time the other two guys are havin such an awesome time and they felt like they missed out on a great time they thought it would be a great idea if we extended our trip for two more days. Now, I must also say that we were going down to Vegas to go to an online gaming conference and unfortunately we purchased the tickets and we never made it to the show. So I guess you could say we had a good time. So we called the airlines and added two more nights to our stay in the City of Sin. It was time to head back to the room and before I shut
er down for the night i played a little bit more of poker online at Poker Party
(Poker Party bonus code 25BR).

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Sunday, September 11, 2005

Vegas Expedition Day2

After a long first night in Vegas and with football games starting at 10:00am local time we found this too be a little early for us so we figured we'd grab some food from the Caesar’s food court and get ready for the second set of games to start placin’ our bets. For those that have never been to a Sportsbook or Caesar's Sportsbook for that matter, it is a sight to be seen. There are televisions everywhere you turn and each table in the place has four huge comfy chairs with a table and a television, not to mention the four big screens at the front of the Sportsbook. This place has the perfect set up for the sports fan. The only flaw with this place is that the wireless internet wasn't working so we couldn't fire up our laptops and play some sit and go's at Poker Party. The betting stations had serious lineups, so if you like to wait until the last possible moment before you place bets you could be in for some trouble. There are betting sheets located at the central station for you to grab and to get your brain working in overdrive to see exactly what bets you are going to make.

We decided to put a bet on the New York Football Giants as they were taking on the Arizona Cardinals. On another ticket we decided to go with a three team parlay on the Chargers to beat the Cowboys, the Packers to beat the Lions, and the Rams to beat the 49ers. The parlay ticket looked pretty good right well we didn't win a single game. We did win the Giants bet so that covered us off and we decided with the winnings from the Giant ticket we would put that money down on another ticket (that’s how they got us). We went with another parlay ticket and we picked the Colts to beat the Ravens, and in the Monday nighter we picked the Eagles to knock off the Falcons. We put down $175 on the parlay and we were lickin our chops at the potential of this ticket. The colts took care of business and we thought for sure the Eagles were gonna take care of the Falcons. Well again we were wrong, as the Eagles laid a big egg in the Monday nighter and us guys who thought we knew everything were dealt another losing ticket. Hopefully, this is not a sign of things to come for the rest of this trip. So far the only money i have one in Vegas has been from the online poker variety.

During the Sunday afternoon games we were drinking at a serious pace and then this group of Cowboy fans decided to pass us about 15 free drink tickets. That's what we’re talkin about. So, like most folks in Vegas were on our way to having another long day. But that’s why we came here. After being in the Sportsbook for about five hours we felt it was time to relocate for the Sunday Night game. So we found this small patio, adjacent to the outdoor boxing ring at Caesar's. That was a pretty cool sight to see, it’s too bad there were no big fights when we were down there. Maybe the next time we’re in Vegas.

We watched the first quarter of the football game before it was time to go out for dinner. We had reservations at the Bellagio and this restaurant (I can’t remember the name of the restaurant but its right beside the poker room) knows how do it up right.

here is the view of the restaurant from the casino

There were steaks galore and it was at this time where I was introduced by my boy JohnnyM to having my steak cooked Chicago Style. I’m gonna say the person who came up with this creation (Chicago Style) is an absolute genius. I won’t have my steak done any other way now, that’s for sure. With there being no smoking allowed at our table, guys would need to relocate in order to smoke. The smokers would have to go out in the casino I will not lie to ya, guys were making a lot of trips out there. While guys were hackin mad darts there were a lot of the top poker players in the world strolling on by. We saw the likes of Mr. Johnny Chan, Ted Forrest and, Mike "the mouth" Matusow to name a few(now there is also the WSOP Tournament Circuit event going on during the days as well at Harrah's, so these guys were getting there full share of poker in).

We finished off our plates at dinner and the time has come for the crew to get our night on the town underway. We decide we’re gonna head on down to the
MGM and see what’s going on (nothing crazy tonight since a boatload of cash was dropped the night before at Pure). We tried to get into a couple of clubs there but a couple of the guys had some white shoes on and for that we were told to beat it (the bouncer at this club was a complete ass and thought he was Mr.Vegas, what a piece of work!!). Since we were in the casino already we decided to sit down at the BlackJack table for a bit before we headed outside to the Vegas strip.

There wasn't much going on at this end of town so we slowly made our way back down to our neck of the woods (by Caesar's). A couple of the guys in the crew were fading real fast so they decided to call it a night (really they wanted to play some texas holdem at Poker Party), and left three of us who were still looking to giver. We continued pacing around the strip and checking out random bars until we had really no other options but to go back to the after hours club Drais. On this night Drais had this guy playing the Bongo's and this guy had the place just going crazy. Again, this place has a different scene to it than the rest of the clubs, but we definitely enjoyed ourselves in there this evening (except from a random encounter with this real strange dude). This guy on the bongos was putting on a show that blew us away especially when he and the DJ would start battling back and forth (it was like they were playing heads up poker at the casino or during an online poker battle). We were in there for about three hours and by the time we got out of there it was 5am. At this point we were real gunned and we were trying to stumble our way back to Caesar's Palace. Everywhere we turn there are Tutes everywhere (when I refer to Tutes, i'm talkin about hookers). This is the one thing that blew me away about Vegas, there are Tute's absolutely everywhere and some of them you have no clue if they are one or not. At some points, I was questioning myself on every hot girl I would come across whether or not she was a Tute or not. This was the craziest thing I’ve come across in a long while. Obviously late at night you can tell as they just hover around the hotels, (in the casinos, front door, bars) the best is when you see a dude who’s like fifty (he looks like a complete knob and he's got this unbelievable girl who is probably the age of his daughter and he’s walking arm and arm with her). At this point you chuckle too yourself and say "like she's not a Tute". So another day and another night in Vegas and we have one more night left to go. God, time flies when you’re in Vegas.

bonus code 25BR for Poker Party

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Saturday, September 10, 2005

Vegas Expedition Day1

It’s Friday September 9th, our bags are packed and we were headed to the city of sin. Our flight was scheduled to leave Buffalo, New York on Saturday morning at 8:30am so we decided that we would head out the night before and have a little fun before we hit our most anticipated destination: Vegas. We set up shop in the hotel room with poker chips, cards, and beers in hand; we got our trip started off in the right way. We also had our laptops set up and played some online poker at Poker Party. The alarm hits, and the BurnandTurn.com crew were ready to get to Vegas.

After seven hours of traveling the plane finally touches down in the City of Sin. A couple of the boys have felt the Vegas adrenaline rush before, but The Kid has never been there before and he had a rush he has never felt before. We grabbed our bags and headed to the Airport Limousine, first stop; Caesar's Palace. First off, Caesar’s Palace is a sight in its own right. Never, have I seen a hotel with this much character and size, I was completely blown away by its presence.

"Here is a shot of the entrance to our palace for the week"

We head into the hotel to get our room situation taken care of and unload all of our gear. We head on over to the Augustus Towers (the new addition in Caesar’s) and we walk into the room and I had to stop at the sight, Absolutely Unbelievable. There are plasmas everywhere, even in the bathroom. Alright, its time to hit the streets and find out what this Vegas place is all about. We head down to the lobby, walk through the casino and see where we are going to set up shop for the afternoon. We see the Sportsbook at Caesar’s and we knew right away where we were going to be spending our day on Sunday. So we head out to the shops in Caesar’s, and Jesus it’s bigger than some of the hotels in Vegas. We finally figure out how to get out of the mall (if you haven’t been there this mall is like a bloody maze) and we spotted our first patio where we were going to set ourselves up for the afternoon. This patio had a lot of life to it, especially since it’s about two o’clock in the afternoon. The streets are rammed and people are walkin away with beers in their hands and takin strolls down the streets. That for one blew me away and I knew right away that Las Vegas is a World of its own. After spending the afternoon at this patio we decided it was time to hit up the poker rooms. We checked out a couple of poker rooms and we decided we’d play at the Bellagio. Two members of our crew purchased their chips (it was minimum $200 buy-in) and they were off and runnin. I had to run back to the room real quick and grab my other buddy who was playing in an online poker tournament at Poker Party. This guy is real hooked on his poker tournaments, but eventually i was able to convince him to come with me and meet the others at the Bellagio poker room.

here is the bellagio poker room and the sportsbook in the background

I was sittin at the bar next to the poker room watchin the Texas-Ohio State football game. Go Horns was the consensus in that Sportsbook, it was rammed with people just lovin the Longhorns. From time to time i'd go and check in and see how my boys were makin out in the poker room. They both were playin pretty well when this big hand came up. My one buddy has A3 suited and he decides to make a bet, my other buddy has AQ of diamonds and he quickly calls that, now this other guy at the table (who has been playing real loose) decides to raise the bet. So, both of my buddies decide to call his raise (anticipating a bluff which this guy was notorious for). The flop comes and there is no help, no help to either guy on the turn or the river, but the bets are now up to $200 a guy (total pot size is at around $700), and both of my guys lost the hand and some serious chips to this guy who was holding onto the Big Slick. This guy took a dent out of both of my buds. One of the guys decided he'd had enough and decided to join me at the bar to watch the big game (as well as some of the scenery that was continuing to walk by), and we were also part time railbirds watchin our buddy make a comeback at the table. After takin that big hit on his chipstack, he climbed his way back and ended up winning a couple hundred bucks (this guy’s got some game). Welcome to Vegas. We head back up to the hotel room and i quickly log onto Poker Party and I got my poker fix in. Although it probably wasn't the best time for me too sit down at a table as i was already a little gunned at this point. I finished in fourth place in a ten man tourney.

It’s time for us to go get ready for dinner and for our big night on the town. We had a table booked at Pure night club (which is in Caesar's Palace) and I have only heard awesome things about this place. We head down from our room and make our way through this sick lineup, I swear to God I’ve never seen a lineup like this before. There was hundreds upon hundreds of people just trying to get a sniff of this place, and we were lucky enough to just walk up to the front of the line talk to the dudes in charge and we were taken care of (if you plan on going to Pure on a Saturday night, I highly recommend getting a table or else you are in for a long lineup, although it is pretty expensive). They took us to our table and everything I had heard about this place was absolutely on point. We sat down at our table and promptly ordered three bottles of Grey Goose and a bottle of Hennessey. Our Grey Goose was bein mixed with Red Bulls and we were on our way to a stellar first night in Vegas.

At around 12:30 in the evening we were chillin at our table (five of the boys) and all of a sudden we hear this ruckus comin through the crowd in the bar, and its two more of our buddies who made a surprise entrance from Canada. These guys just came out of nowhere to pull off one of the craziest surprises ever. I mean, its one thing when you’re back home and one of your buddies arrives at a local bar (like getting off work early or something), but when two chiefs fly cross country too surprise ya, that’s freakin unbelievable. So from there we just gaver at the club and it was an unbelievable night. The place was rammed and the dance floor is so packed it takes about twenty minutes to get by the dance floor just to get into the line up for the bathroom (another good feature to having a table is you don’t have to wait in line for drinks as these lineups were out of control).

Alright, our time at Pure was over and it was time too see what else there was out there to do on a Saturday night in Vegas (at 3 am). Well we decided to go to this after hours club called Drais, and we chilled in there listenin to some beats for awhile (saw some real characters, especially this guy who must have been like 65 on everything imaginable just givener on the dance floor, it was a sight too see) and then we decided to head back to the hotel and get ready for our full day in the Sportsbook at Caesar’s Palace. Once we got back to the hotel room my buddy and I fired up the laptops for a couple more rounds on Poker Party(bonus code 25BR) this time we played in a 20 man tournament and we lost the heads up battle and came away with second place. Not too Brad. Time for bed.

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Monday, September 05, 2005

Professional Poker Players Online Nicknames

This poker blog is brought to you by bonus code 25BR on Poker Party

I thought I would put a list together of the professionals online poker nicknames. Check these out and you can follow these guys in action.

Agesen, Klaus - Kagesen
Alston, Gregory - dblgutshot
Andersson, Davin - dabest247
Ankenman, Jerrod - jerrod
Arias, Jorge - twin-caracas
Arieh, Josh - razorbax
Ashby, Richard - CHUFTY

Bartley, Aaron - GambleAB
Benyamine, David - magicpitch
Berg, Anders - Donald
Berman, Lyle - buckskin (on UB)
Billirikas, Steve - MrSmokey1
Bobba, Dan - BobbaD, NeverheebX
Boeken, Noah - Exclusive / Who is next?
Bonomo, Justin - ZeeJustin
Boyd, Dutch - KidDutch
Boxall, Leo - The Wombat

Bush, Chris - Bushman

Cassidy, Joe - Butch Acidy
Campbell, Ray - KidBlaast
Carroll, Cory - HALIPIMP
Chen, William - wchen
Cooper, Alexander - Axabaxa
Cordi, Joseph - DeOhGee
Corkins, Hoyt - EasyH
Cowely, Steve - Rabscuttle
Cunningham, Alan - wallfly
Curzio, Patrick - curzdog

D’Agostino, John - jdags21
Darden, Paul - D-Rockkk
Day, Steve - ackbleh
Debora, Greg - ChosenKid
Dean, Matt - mattpackage
Dicken, Darrell "Gigabet" - darrell77
Duthie, John - Blessed

Fithian, Eric - HoldEmPhil
Flack, Layne - reloadthis
Fradet, Nicholas - Darth Maul
Friedman, Prahlad - Prefontaine (Mahatma, Spirit Rock on UB)
Fischman, Scott - emptyseat88
Forrest, Ted - theprofess (shared)

Gale, John - gizzimow
Gerasimov, Kirill - kirillG
Giordano, Pete - TheBeat
Girdwood, Iain - TiLLerMan
Grosspellier, Bertrand - ElkY
Greenstein, Barry - (* see Tran, Mimi)
Griffin, Gavin - wsop2005
Grijalva, Richard - gotmilk

Halling, Oren - H@££ingol
Haber, Eric - sheets
Hang, Tam "Tommy" - minatmms
Hansen, Gus - broksi
Harper, John - ICfishies
Hawking, Patrick - TheHawk
Hawkins, Keith - The Camel
Hellmuth, Phil - #1_Lucky_One
Heimiller, Dan - lenny
Henry, Jeff - The Shrike
Hollink, Rob - batoelrob

Ivey, Phil - joe buttons / eurogon

Jacobs, Steven - stevesbets
Jett, Chip - capncoke
Josephy, Cliff - JohnnyBax
Juanda, John - luckbox
Jungblut, Brett - gank

Keating, Robert - Thorpedo
Keller, Shawn - chickenlittl
Keller, Thomas - bigglesworth on PS, thunderkeller and newpollution on UB
Keikoon, Matt - schnizeltoe
Kruel, Christian - C.K.
Kwon, James - neverlose

Lane, Jon - G6Dragon
Lent, Gary - Tryangle
Lieu, Liz - TWINKIE
Lindgren, Eric - EDOGN
Lindholt, Jarl - Virus1975
Lund, Hans - luckysucker

Ma, Tony - Tigerma
Matusow, Mike - mrpokejoke
Martin, Jesse - MazeOrBowie
McEvoy, Tom - TomMcEvoy
Meehan, Jim - actiondonkey
Micon, Bryan "The Icon" - micon
Minter, Jake - sorerichard
Misiti, Jim - Spyder44
Mizrachi, Michael - TheGrinder
Mizrachi, Robert - who's bad
Moneymaker, Chris - Money800
Moncada, Edward - ebolivia

Negreanu, Daniel - doublesuited
Ng, Evelyn - Evybabee

Park, Theodore - Veganboy
Parker, Andrew - t soprano
Paterson, Stuart - thedonator
Patry, Guillaume - TheGrrrr...
Phillips, Paul - extempore
Pino, Mike - ninewins
Prock, Andrew - Quackers

Rao, Gautam - TheCount1729
Raymer, Greg - Fossilman
Rheem, David - Chino23
Reed, Michael - reggiman
Rice, Shawn - WestTexasMan
Rosario, Shirley - Siren

Sagstrom, Erik - Erik123
Saunders, Cory - texdaddy
Schlen, Josh - SDouble
Schleger, Shane - Shaniac
Seif, Mark - Buster Love
Shiu, Millie - Poker Snoopy
Skjervold, Edgar - Ragde
Smith, Gavin - birdguts
Smith, Matthew - SamENole
Strasser, Jason - strassa2
Spake, Tim - Slambam2

Thorn, Raymi - DingDingDing
Thorson, William - William
Tran, Mimi - crazyplayr (Greenstein's account)
Trumper, Simon "Aces" - PateK

Williams, David - RugDoctor
Witteles, Todd - Dan Druff
Wolfe, Paul - DOUBLEDUCE (apparently banned)
Woolf, Dustin - neverwin

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Saturday, September 03, 2005

Daniel Negreanu Challenge

Here is an article from Canadian Poker Player Magazine that i thought would be an interesting read on Daniel Negreanu and his big money challenges.

Poker lore reminds us how Benny Binion matched poker legends Nick the Greek and Johnny Moss in epic heads-up poker matches. The two would play just behind a glass window, with the huge stakes being wagered, garnering the attention from passer-bys. The spirit of these classic battles lives on once again, this time in the new Wynn Las Vegas Casino on the mid-strip. The Wynn’s poker host and 2004 Toyota World Series of Poker Player of the Year, Daniel Negreanu, issued an open challenge to any poker player on earth. The challenge is simple: he’ll play anyone heads-up at any of the common poker variations (hold’em, Omaha, stud, triple-draw, limit, no limit, or pot limit) for a buy-in of $100,000-$500,000.

Daniel’s challenge did not go unnoticed. When Daniel first issued his challenge in April of this year, internet websites and poker chat forums immediately teemed with discussion and excitement. Some poker insiders thought his idea was nothing more than a veiled publicity stunt, predicting that very few contenders would arise for such high stakes. Since then, Daniel has indeed taken on a series of poker greats. The main attraction for the challenger is simple: the challenger gets to choose the game and limit. These challengers, then, will automatically choose their best game and limit structure to take any advantage that they can.

The playing schedule of these challenges has been hampered by the ever-increasing hectic schedules of the professional poker players. For instance, Daniel has been very busy with the marketing of his new video game Stacked!, writing poker columns for newspapers and magazines, and playing in the World Series of Poker. Still, he’s been able to wager millions of dollars in nine contests thus far.

May 13th - Limit Hold’em vs. David Oppenheim - $200,000 buy-in

Daniel’s first contender was David Oppenheim. Casual poker enthusiasts may best know David through his appearance at the final table at the Borgata Casino event of Season 2 of the World Poker Tour. Poker professionals know David as one of the most formidable cash game players out there. David has been successful in high-stakes cash games since he was in his early 20’s (perhaps even younger). He’s considered to be one of the best in all forms of limit poker. As a younger player, he was known to be volatile and be susceptible to tilt. Through his years of experience, he’s grown past this to become a player with few weaknesses in his game.

Daniel wore a wide grin as some onlookers and press members huddled near the table to watch this compelling event. The cards were tough to “Kid Poker,” though. On a couple of occasions Daniel flopped trips, only to get beaten on the river by straights and flushes. At the end of the five hours of play, Negreanu has lost all of his chips to David. Running total -$200,000

May 16th - Limit Hold’em vs. Mimi Tran - $500,000 buy-in

Barry Greenstein schooled Mimi Tran in the art and science of poker many years ago. Since then, Mimi has become one of the best limit hold’em players in the world and has racked up tonnes of money finishes at the most prestigious tournaments in limit and no limit games. Some of her regular games in Los Angeles area are considered some of the toughest to navigate on the planet.

Mimi would find this evening to be an especially tough night of poker, though. Daniel began by amassing a sizable lead. Although Mimi was able to work back to being even for some time, Daniel began to hit many flops and regain the momentum. After a ten and a half hour marathon of poker, Daniel secured all of the 1 million dollars on the table. Running total + $300,000

May 23rd - Limit Hold’em vs. Joe Cassidy - $200,000 buy-in

Joe Cassidy is one of the rising young stars in poker. Although he’s only 24 years old, he’s already well known in poker circles for his mighty poker wars he’s waged at the Commerce Casino. His plans to become a lawyer were sidetracked due to trips to the poker rooms. Now a professional poker player with cashes at some of the WPT and WSOP events, I doubt that we will ever see him in law school.

Early on, Daniel lost a monster pot when his K-J of diamonds flopped a flush. Joe’s pocket Aces included a diamond, so the 4th diamond on the river provided Cassidy a nice windfall. Joe used some keen moves and good cards to dispense of Negreanu after about seven and a half hours of play. Although Daniel had lost 2 matches and won only 1, his single win was on the biggest money game meaning he still was in the black. Running total + $100,000

June 4th - 7 Card Stud vs. Barry Greenstein - $500,000 buy-in

Barry Greenstein is known as the “Robin Hood of Poker,” as he gives his tournament winnings to charities. He is one of the best overall players of poker today, with solid ability in all spreads of games. He plays in the highest limit cash games he can find, and has innumerable accomplishments on the tournament trail. Poker enthusiasts heavily anticipated this match-up, as Barry had spoken about his intentions to play Daniel at several/all of the games. In many respects, Greenstein vs. Negreanu has some of the same intriguing characteristics as Johnny Moss vs. Nick the Greek.

Playing around their schedules with the ongoing World Series of Poker events, this challenge was played-out in a couple of different sessions. Barry held control for most of the event, with Daniel continually battling to get back to even. Even after Daniel was able to secure a couple of slim leads, it still seemed to many observers that Greenstein held the advantage. In total, it took nearly thirteen and a half hours for the match to be completed. In the end, Barry walked away as the winner. Running total - $400,000

June 15th - 7 Card Stud vs. Barry Greenstein - $500,000 buy-in

Daniel’s confidence was not broken from his loss to Barry in the first Stud match. A few days later, they settled back in for yet another poker battle after Daniel asked for the rematch. With the World Series still in full swing, Barry and Daniel had to find time to meet and play when available over a couple of day’s worth of time. I’m sure neither would have guessed that it would take around eighteen and a half hours to complete the match! Barry Greenstein once again played great cards and made some timely moves. On the final hand of this long event, Barry caught trip 5’s to best Daniel’s 2 pair. All of the sudden, many were wondering if Daniel’s quest may be a bust. With his overall record at 1-4 in the heads-up matches, many questioned his wisdom of allowing the opponents to pick the game. Running Total - $900,000

June 16th - Pot Limit Omaha vs. Barry Greenstein - $500,000 buy-in

With two consecutive losses to Barry Greenstein, and an overall deficit of $900,000, the pressure must have been building for Daniel heading into this Omaha match. Greenstein is known to be an excellent PL Omaha player, and he must have been very confident as he entered the game. Yet it was Daniel who came out of the gates in a blaze, pulling in big pots and taking a sizable lead within a short amount of time. A proven veteran, Greenstein did not panic. Instead, Barry weathered the storm and came back to find himself nearly even a short while later. After another turn in fortunes, the first day of play ended with Daniel up about $125,000 overall. Play resumed the following day, but it took only a few minutes to complete the match. Barry missed the river card that he was looking for, enabling Daniel to take the match and win back a half of a million of his money. Running total - $400,000

June 17th - Stud H/L, 8 or better vs. Barry Greenstein - $500,000 buy-in

As soon as the PL Omaha challenge match was completed, the two familiar foes began a new contest. This time it was Stud H/L. As he’d done with the Pot Limit game, Daniel started out in full sprint. He was catching great cards and making wise moves, putting him up about $350,000 within the first couple of hours of play. That number held true as they played through the rest of the evening. When play resumed on another day, Barry continued his efforts to break through to no avail. Barry clawed and fought, forcing yet another day of play to be needed. Another long session ensued on the third day of Stud 8 play, until Barry was eventually dwindled down.

After this key win, Daniel posted the following thoughts on his personal blog at www.fullcontactpoker.com, “I hit hands when I needed to and was lucky that Barry missed some key draws along the way. While I feel like luck was on my side, though, I also believe that my hand reading skills are better than his at Stud H/L. Of all the matches we played thus far, Stud H/L would be the one where I feel like my edge over him is at it’s highest.” Running total +$100,000

July 15th - Pot Limit Omaha vs. Tony Bloom - $500,000 buy-in

Tony Bloom is one of Europe’s most highly regarded players. This Londoner displayed his Omaha skills by winning the Crown Australian Poker Championship event in January. Confident and aggressive, Tony may have been a slight favorite coming into this contest, as this is one of Tony’s strongest games.

The back and forth battle included many of the fireworks we may have guessed it would produce. With the World Series of Poker getting much of the attention of fans and media across town, there were few distractions to the players (except for that pesky $1 million that was at stake). There was very little in pre-flop folds. In fact, raises and calls were the norm rather than the exception. Daniel seemed visibly perplexed by some of Tony’s unusual plays. Daniel stayed the course, grinding out a chip lead. The final hand of the contest was symbolic of the intense nature of the game -- both players wound-up pushing in their chips, both using 6-7 for the same straight after the turn. Daniel’s 6 and 7 were both diamonds, though, giving him a straight flush draw. The river brought Daniel the 9-high straight flush to secure the $500,000 victory! Running total +$600,000

In Progress - Pot Limit Hold’em vs. Anonymous - $500,000 buy-in

This wealthy businessman wants to avoid the media and limelight, so he’s withholding his name. He is not a Las Vegas local, so this game can only occur as he makes his occasional visits to Sin City. Thus far, they’ve logged around nine hours at the table with Daniel up around $26,000. Running total +$626,000


The Daniel Negreanu challenge record stands at 4 wins, 4 losses, and one in-progress for a total profit of $626,000. At about 88 hours at the table thus far, that puts his hourly rate somewhere near $7,100 per hour. Not a bad two weeks at the office, I’d say. Casual fans may think that the pressure, attention, and money would have to wear on Daniel. It seems that most of these concerns are inaccurate. Daniel is a consummate professional. The long hours at the table would be a grind on anyone, for sure. But the money and pressure are nearly a non-factor for him. He enjoys poker. He believes in himself and his ability against anyone in the world. Theses games not only help to naturally promote his endeavors such as his video game and website, it also shines the spotlight of the poker world on the Wynn Casino. With more Greenstein vs. Negreanu grudge matches on the horizon and several other challengers awaiting their opportunity, it is obvious that the Negreanu open challenge will continue for some time.

Thanks for reading and this post was brought to you by bonus code 20BR at Partypoker

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