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2015: The return to online poker

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  1. #1
    griffey24's Avatar
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    Default 2015: The return to online poker

    Hey guys,

    Well I have an ongoing blog, 2013: Make or Break. I think I will keep that one going, and have it be more focused about live play.

    As of this weekend I made my return to online poker after about a crazy 2 year hiatus. I say crazy cause I got married, got a new house and had a baby in that time and given everything that was going on, it didn't leave too much time for online grind. On top of that, live grind was going so well that it didn't really make that much sense to keep doing the tough pokerstars grind.

    That being said, It's been tough to get out to the casino since the little guy was born. The nice weather in the summer makes it even more tough, and weekends are the time I want to spend with the little guy, so taking a fully day for live grind is tough (esp in the nicer months).

    After hearing some good things about Bodog, I've decided to give it a try. I've deposited $1500 CAD (~around 1200-1300 USD).

    Few facts about Bodog for those that don't know:
    1. Tables are anonymous (no names - just numbers). I think over time this will re-fuel my desire to play GTO.
    2. Max 4 tables. After always grinding 8-11 stars tables, I think this will be good for my focus.
    3. There are HUD's, but obv these only show stats for current sessions (small sample sizes).

    Short term goals:
    1. Play 100nl up to $3k.
    2. Play 200nl up to $6-8k.
    3. Start mixing in a table of 2/4 at $6-8k by end of the year.
    4. Clear the $1k deposit bonus within 3 months.
    5. Play without a HUD for a month, and re-assess if I should continue doing so or not. I've never played without a HUD so this is a big change, esp on anonym tables.
    6. Play about 5-10 hours a week, when baby is napping/sleeping.

    Sooo here we go!
    Quote Originally Posted by Jay-Z
    I'm a couple hands down and I'm tryin' to get back
    I gave the other grip, I lost a flip for five stacks
  2. #2
    griffey24's Avatar
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    Some thoughts from the Weekend grind:

    1. Played probably 4 hours of up and down poker. Getting used to the software etc.
    2. The toughest part of not using a HUD is not having HERO stats. Especially when ppl are only see small sample size data. It would be very useful to know if I'm running like 40/35 in the eyes of the other players on a particular table.
    3. I started playing way too loose, given the anonymity. Had some swings, up 1 buyin, down 6 and then up 2 buyins. Overall I'm probably down 3 buyins, but started playing tighter/better to close out.
    4. Polarized spots: This is another tough spot without reads (anonym) and no HUD. It's tough to make decisions in polarized spots, like having an overpair and cbetting from EP and getting raised on flop and barreled. Or raising UTG and getting 3b by MP. This is where playing/studying GTO will have to pay off down the line.
    Quote Originally Posted by Jay-Z
    I'm a couple hands down and I'm tryin' to get back
    I gave the other grip, I lost a flip for five stacks
  3. #3
    Sounds like a good plan - I think cutting down the tables, tightening up a bit and avoiding Stars is definitely the way to go for the part-time grinder looking to make a few bucks on the side. It's only taken me a few years to realise this!
  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by The Bean Counter View Post
    Sounds like a good plan - I think cutting down the tables, tightening up a bit and avoiding Stars is definitely the way to go for the part-time grinder looking to make a few bucks on the side. It's only taken me a few years to realise this!
    I couldn't have said it better. Best of luck in your ongoing poker journey, griffey!
  5. #5
    griffey24's Avatar
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    Thanks guys! Bean - I definitely agree, I kinda wish my last venture into more part time online grinding was focused on a site different than stars. I got too sucked into he appeals of RB, when playing with worse players will way compensate the lack of RB.

    Bodog observations thus far:

    Software:
    1. Max four tables is ok, but the lobby has a lag. So if you see are 4-tabling and want to swap one of your tables, you have to close a table to even open a fourth. Due to the lag, sometimes when you open a new table that says "5/6 players" it is actually full. So you end up closing one of your tables and not being able to add a fourth. There is also a time limit for which you can re-sit at a table, so you can't even go back to the table you just left. So that is annoying.
    2. No auto-top up is not the end of the world, but would be nice!
    3. No short cut keys for betting. Can't use mouse roller for changing bet size. Bet size increments in 1bb (can't customize to 0.5bb), so have to type in sizing if you don't want an increment of 1bb. All of these are minor things, but you get spoiled with them on Stars. That being said, only 4-tabling you have more time to type in bets etc.
    4. Overall, software is better than I thought it would be. Other than the lag on the lobby itself, there is no lag in the actual play. Haven't had any weird disconnects yet or anything like that, so seems reliable.

    Quality of Play (sample - about 4-5k hands at 100nl).
    *This will mostly be a comparison to stars (I never played 100nl at stars, but from what i would assume 100nl is like after playing 200nl+)
    1. Clearly poorer quality of play. Much more open limping. People stationing barrels more often. Surprising things like 3b, and triple barrel Jxxhh 6h Ax river and get called by 99. Have had many hands that have made me say "wow, ok" already. Unfortunately for me a lot were bluffs, and bluffing in spots where even if I had seen their hand I would have still made the bluff, and they would have still called.
    2. Seemingly less stealing. If you're in the BB you get walks reasonably often. Feel like this rarely happened on stars, but maybe I'm mis-remembering.
    3. People aren't 3betting light? Small sample size, but NONE of my 4bet bluffs have worked. So either ppl are 5b shoving light or just not 3b very light. I'm assuming it's the latter? I don't have a HUD right now, so I don't know what ppl's 3b % is. For all I know it's like 5% and I probably shouldn't be 4b bluffing in the first place.
    4. People aren't 4b light either? Again very small sample size on this, but I have not successfuly 3b/5b AK yet. Each time I've run into AA or KK. Haven't even had a flip, and I haven't had a fold. I'll continue 3b/5b AK for the next 5k hands or so and re-assess. If there is no fold equity and ppl aren't calling off light then it doesn't seem great to play for stacks.

    Some of these observations may be $100nl specific, though from friends that play higher up on Bodog, I'm not sure it changes that much moving up. Will keep you posted!
    Quote Originally Posted by Jay-Z
    I'm a couple hands down and I'm tryin' to get back
    I gave the other grip, I lost a flip for five stacks
  6. #6
    Micro2Macro's Avatar
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    Hey Griff, good luck with this.

    After reading your blurb about bodog software I have no idea how you grind it without tilting, so props to you for that.
  7. #7
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    Surprised you can even find 4 tables of 100nl playing on Bovada.
    It takes 2 years to learn to talk, but a lifetime to learn when to shut up.
  8. #8
    griffey24's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eberetta1 View Post
    Surprised you can even find 4 tables of 100nl playing on Bovada.
    It's actually not very hard to find tables. I guess one positive to Bodog/Bovada is no waitlists, so you can get onto most open tables reasonably easily. Doesn't seem like regs with seating scripts have taken over either so that's nice.

    If you're waiting for four tables to have 5/6 so that you can join, it might take 10mins. If you are willing to sit at short tables or start tables, you'll be on 4 full 6-max tables pretty quick (~5 mins) it seems.
    Quote Originally Posted by Jay-Z
    I'm a couple hands down and I'm tryin' to get back
    I gave the other grip, I lost a flip for five stacks
  9. #9
    i struggle to find one table at party, nevermind 4. but since im canadian playing with a bunch of europeans i guess its to be expected.

    i keep reminding myself though, a small pool of rec players is still better than a hi-traffic site stock full of regs.

    i remember years ago i got bored of the low trafic site i was on and moved to full tilt and stars etc.... was a mistake back then and still is now.

    but just outta curiosity, which sites would have a bit more traffic between 8pm-12am central?

    at party, the 100fast table pool sits around 80+ during peak times, but when i get on to play i often find the same 2 guys
  10. #10
    griffey24's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by langaan View Post
    i struggle to find one table at party, nevermind 4. but since im canadian playing with a bunch of europeans i guess its to be expected.

    i keep reminding myself though, a small pool of rec players is still better than a hi-traffic site stock full of regs.

    i remember years ago i got bored of the low trafic site i was on and moved to full tilt and stars etc.... was a mistake back then and still is now.

    but just outta curiosity, which sites would have a bit more traffic between 8pm-12am central?

    at party, the 100fast table pool sits around 80+ during peak times, but when i get on to play i often find the same 2 guys
    From what friends tell me, the late night games on Bodog are decent. (late night EST, which is around the time you are suggesting). I mostly play 7-9pm EST.

    Can you try starting new tables on Party?
    Quote Originally Posted by Jay-Z
    I'm a couple hands down and I'm tryin' to get back
    I gave the other grip, I lost a flip for five stacks
  11. #11
    donkbee's Avatar
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    omg back to online! So happy to see this thread. GLGL!
    Quote Originally Posted by Fnord View Post
    Why poker fucks with our heads: it's the master that beats you for bringing in the paper, then gives you a milkbone for peeing on the carpet.

    blog: http://donkeybrainspoker.com/


    Watch me stream $200 hyper HU and $100 Spins on Twitch!
  12. #12
    griffey24's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by donkbee View Post
    omg back to online! So happy to see this thread. GLGL!
    Thanks thanks!

    It is NOT going well so far. In all my previous experiences of starting at new sites, I have always been boom switched to start. I almost felt like it was rigged, always boom switch so that you get hooked and think you can sustain it long term.

    I've definitely hit a mega doom switch to start on Bodog. Probably down about 13 buyins and running 11 buyins under EV. Will take some getting used to the varying style of Bodog as well, but it will turn! (I hope haha).

    How's your grind going?
    Quote Originally Posted by Jay-Z
    I'm a couple hands down and I'm tryin' to get back
    I gave the other grip, I lost a flip for five stacks
  13. #13
    Eric's Avatar
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    It is nice to see people playing online again. Living in California, my options are pretty limited for now but I'm hoping we'll get something going like NJ.
  14. #14
    CBAT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric View Post
    It is nice to see people playing online again. Living in California, my options are pretty limited for now but I'm hoping we'll get something going like NJ.
    Same here Eric (in NY and 2.5 miles from NJ). Go Griffey! Runbad will correct itself.
  15. #15
    griffey24's Avatar
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    Back in the green!

    After starting out my bodog grind running 11 buyins under EV, I've been doing the slow ramp up the last month and am back in the green.

    I decided that given I'm just doing this part time that maybe I should focus on a nice slow relaxing low variance grind, so for the first time in my poker career I'm playing Full Ring online. (Thus far all my FR play has been limited to live).

    Compared to the fast pace of 12 tabling 6max on Stars, 4 tabling FR on Bodog is definitely relaxing.

    My plan for the short term is to withdraw all of my live funds, and have that in the bank as part of my online roll. That would leave me with about 15 buyins for 400nl, which for FR I don't think is unreasonable. Given the volume at Bodog, I likely can only get 2 2/4 tables at once, along with 2 1/2 tables anyhow (which is effectively playing 300nl).

    Let's hope this is the start of a long sustained heater!
    Quote Originally Posted by Jay-Z
    I'm a couple hands down and I'm tryin' to get back
    I gave the other grip, I lost a flip for five stacks
  16. #16
    Eric's Avatar
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    CBAT, u ever travel 3 miles and play at a nj starbucks?

    Griffey, glad to see ur back in the green.
  17. #17
    CBAT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric View Post
    CBAT, u ever travel 3 miles and play at a nj starbucks?

    Griffey, glad to see ur back in the green.
    Whoops! Meant 2.5 hours. And I haven't tried it. I should.
  18. #18
    Best of luck mate!
    I'm new to poker and have been learning it on different different forums such as ************ and **************
    I would say that my game is improving but I'm not going anywhere near good. I will be following this thread and probably start my own in few months.
    Last edited by Keith; 07-31-2015 at 01:10 PM. Reason: links removed
  19. #19
    Welcome back and good luck with your goals!
  20. #20
    Nice story dude and good luck with your plan!
    I myself has quit the full time grind in 2012. Still came back many times to look for some quick cash but I have to admit the game is much tougher right now. Players seem do not make basic mistakes anymore. I even tried to look for some other sites like 888 or Party but it is not much different. Pokerstars is still the best site in terms of software and game availability in my opinion.
    So far I don't see any light at the tunnel and still have to wait for the bright days to comeback. In the mean time I have to stick to my day job for my life security )
    It is great to hear people sharing stories like this in 2015. Keep going & good luck at the table!
  21. #21
    griffey24's Avatar
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    This is my attempt at doing a 40k hand checkup. I haven't posted images etc in a while, so let's see if I still remember how to do this!

    All the stats below are from Full Ring on Bodog (Anonymous). Running pretty crappy overall so far. I've taken a few shots at 3/6 and 5/10, and run well below EV thus far. Hopefully my shot taking EV improves.

    This is the first time I've ever played Full Ring online in my life, though I'm sure having come from playing live full ring for the last 1.5 years or so, it helped somewhat. It's also nice to play a little lower variance.

    From speaking to other guys who have grinded bodog for a reasonably long period of time, it sounds like the biggest winners can sustain 9-10bb/100 (which is obviously unheard of on sites like Stars). So I'm hoping that's true and that this winrate is actually sustainable. Given I'm running bad a part of me thinks it may be, but we'll see!



    Quote Originally Posted by Jay-Z
    I'm a couple hands down and I'm tryin' to get back
    I gave the other grip, I lost a flip for five stacks
  22. #22
    That's a 2009 winrate right there
    4 tabling, what's the hourly like?
    Run better at higher stakes though
    Nine to five is how to survive - I ain't trying to survive / I'm trying to live it to the limit and love it a lot //

    Can offer RB deals on most sites, PM me.
  23. #23
    griffey24's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alexos View Post
    That's a 2009 winrate right there
    4 tabling, what's the hourly like?
    Run better at higher stakes though
    4-tabling yah. Generally I play as many 2/4 tables as I can get in, so it's probably on average 2-3 2/4 tables and 1-2 1/2 tables. Thus far that works out to around $40 USD/hr, so not too bad. I'll take it!

    I think the biggest key here is that right about now on most other sites is where regs would be studying me, and notice that i'm probably reasonably exploitable in some areas of my game and ten I start a big downswing. So bodog anonymous system hopefully prevents that from happening!
    Quote Originally Posted by Jay-Z
    I'm a couple hands down and I'm tryin' to get back
    I gave the other grip, I lost a flip for five stacks
  24. #24

    Default Good Goals

    Best of luck to you griffey, sounds like you have some attainable and have now attained some of those goals. Keep moving forward. S
  25. #25
    Will be following this. Any recent update?
  26. #26
    griffey24's Avatar
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    Hey guys,

    Haven't posted a while, but still been grinding away at Bodog Full Ring ($1/2-$10/20).

    Things have been going well for the last year or so. Found a style that works well for these 4-tabling anonymous games, and is definitely more of an exploitative style than I first would have assumed to be playing in an anonymous setting.

    The graph is looking nice and similar to my old school non-showdown graph with red line craziness, though I'm managing to keep the showdown winnings in check as well which is nice. Play by stakes has been reasonable consistent, though not doing too hot at 3/6 (small sample though).

    Overall I'm definitely happy with my play, and hopefully I can maintain this winrate for a while. I wasn't sure how sustainable it was at the 40k hand checkup, but am feeling pretty good 110k hands later.






    Quote Originally Posted by Jay-Z
    I'm a couple hands down and I'm tryin' to get back
    I gave the other grip, I lost a flip for five stacks
  27. #27
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    hows fatherhood going ? you must be through the endless diaper changing and getting to the stage where there starts to get a bit of interaction in between.
  28. #28
    griffey24's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith View Post
    hows fatherhood going ? you must be through the endless diaper changing and getting to the stage where there starts to get a bit of interaction in between.
    Hey Keith!

    It's good. he just passed 17 months. started walking properly a couple months ago and is definitely talking more.. or at least saying words It's definitely more fun than a baby just lying there!

    he's still napping a couple times a day on weekends.. so that gives me 3 grind sessions per day on the weekend (two naps and when he sleeps). Looking forward to when I can teach him math and... you know.. pot odds :P
    Quote Originally Posted by Jay-Z
    I'm a couple hands down and I'm tryin' to get back
    I gave the other grip, I lost a flip for five stacks
  29. #29
    slacking...
    Nine to five is how to survive - I ain't trying to survive / I'm trying to live it to the limit and love it a lot //

    Can offer RB deals on most sites, PM me.
  30. #30
    griffey24's Avatar
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    haha yah slacking on updates!

    I can't tell if I'm running bad the last few months, or if all the stars changes have flooded bodog with way more Stars player, but definitely games have gotten tougher (players having much better frequencies) over the last several months. Still winning but not at the 10-12bb/100 clip I was going at for a pretty long while.

    NBA playoffs and some issues with bodog sound have derailed my volume over the last month or two as well.

    Will give more updates soon!
    Quote Originally Posted by Jay-Z
    I'm a couple hands down and I'm tryin' to get back
    I gave the other grip, I lost a flip for five stacks

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