Archive for March, 2014

Poker Enigma Viktor Blom Discusses His Game

by | Published: Saturday, March 29th, 2014

Viktor Blom is somewhat of an enigma in the world of poker. He found his fame in the online poker world, and it would seem he’d prefer to stay there. For quite some time, he hid behind his online screen name “Isildur1” where he played the biggest cash games found online day after day, week after week, month after month. He slowly made a name for himself, as well as boosting his bankroll. He has been much more visible in recent years, due in large part to his sponsorship by Full Tilt Poker.

Blom is currently on the European Poker Tour circuit in Vienna, and spoke to PokerNews on a short break from playing during Day 2.

It can be hard for online players to transition to playing at tables, especially at huge televised events. They go from playing at multiple tables online to just one, much slower live table. Blom seems to be enjoying himself at the EPT Vienna stop so far, but that could just be a result of being at an exciting table.

“…there’ve been a lot of big pots. It’s been fun, really,” said Blom. “I like it when there’s things happening at the table. I’m having a good time for sure.”

Yet just as Blom was having a good time, it was taken away from him. He was soon moved up to the feature table, which is live streamed and under big bright lights – something Blom is not particularly fond of.

“I don’t really like it because it’s so hot up there,” he said. “On top of that, it’s gonna take a lot of time for each hand to finish, so we’ll play less hands. I just prefer a normal table, but it is what it is.”

Once again, Blom slights live poker, especially live poker with a televised element in play, for being slower than he likes. Slower than online poker, that is. Even if Blom doesn’t enjoy live poker tournaments too much, he’s definitely found success in them. He has successfully transferred from just an online cash-game pro.

Blom has over $1.5 million in live tournament earnings. The bulk of that stems from January 2012 when he won the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure $100,000 Super High Roller for over $1.25 million; much more impressive than any online winnings.

The young swede already has three World Series of Poker cash finishes on record, including an impressive 14th-place finish in the famous $50,000 Poker Players’ Championship in 2012 where he walked away with $105,235. Nobody though much of him in the race, thinking he couldn’t play anything but no-limit hold’em.

Despite his successful history, Blom is unsure if he’ll even make the WSOP this year, though the $1 million Big One for One Drop is definitely at the fore-front of his mind.

“…of course it’s on my mind, but I haven’t thought about it too much,” he said. “I don’t know yet, to be honest. I think I’ll be at the World Series this year, but I’m not 100 percent sure yet, though. It sucks so much that it’s right in the middle of the summer. It’s crazy as I won’t be able to enjoy the World Cup that way. I didn’t go last year, but we’ll see. I might be there.”

Blom is currently trying to make a deep run in the EPT Vienna Main Event, and has plenty on his plate whether he makes the WSOP or not.

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Players to Watch at the 2014 Western New York Poker Challenge

by | Published: Friday, March 28th, 2014

The 2014 Western New York Poker Challenge is one day away from kicking off. The annual series takes place just a stone’s throw away from the world famous Niagara Falls at the Seneca Niagara Casino. The best poker players in the region will be battling it out for nine days across sixteen events to come out on top.

After witnessing the play in several tournaments at Seneca, the PokerNews team decided to put together a “Players to Watch” list for the upcoming series. Let’s see how these top players end up faring.

Andy Spears

Andy Spears is very confident at Seneca; it has been his personal playground for the past year. Last August he took down the Summer Slam Series Main Event for $23,700, and just a few months later he went wire-to-wire to win the $1,500 Fall Poker Classic Main Event for $52,410. Spears is not a one-trick pony, he has also found success outside of his home turf.  In September he claimed his first World Series of Poker Circuit ring in Cincinnati, winning a $365 Turbo tournament for $10,801. He will definitely be one to watch at the WNYPC.

Travell Thomas

A big personality and infectious laugh means you’ll know as soon as Travell Thomas has walked into a poker room. He knows how to use this big persona to his advantage at the table as well. Thomas has a pair of WSOPC rings from victories at the Borgata Poker Open, Heartland Poker Tour. He even did well in last year’s WNY Poker Challenge, where he won two side events for more than $16,000 combined. He managed an eighth place finish at the Seneca Fall Poker Classic Main Event last year, and will be aiming for a higher spot this year.

Randy Pfeifer

Pfeifer is another player who has been travelling the tournament circuit for years but still calls the Seneca Poker room home. He’s found most of his success at the Turning Stone Casino in Verona, New York however. Pfeifer won the East Coast Poker Championships at Turning Stone in 2006 for $56,656, his biggest score until he emerged victorious at the2010 Heartland Poker Tour Main Event at Turning Stone for $157,819. He has found success at Seneca too, winning the Seneca Niagara DeepStacks Poker Open Main Event in 2011.

Rick Block

Block has been on a roll ever since he won a side event at the Seneca Fall Poker Classic last November. In December, he won his first WSOP Circuit ring and also finished third in an event at Harrah’s Atlantic City, securing the title of Casino Champion which comes with a seat to the WSOPC National Championship in New Orleans. He has announced he’ll be playing in every one of the sixteen events at Seneca starting Saturday.

Alex Rivera

Rivera had a big win in last year’s WNY Poker Challenge. He made two final tables, where he officially placed second and third. Thomas ended up taking out both of these events. Rivera also won the 2012 Summer Slam Main Event at Seneca Niagara for $20,330, but most of his success on the circuit has taken place at the Venetian Deep Stack Extravaganza. He’s won two events there in the past three years.

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Jason Sell Wins 2014 Mid-Stakes Poker Tour Event

by | Published: Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

Jason Sell took home the top prize as the Mid-Stakes Poker Tour (MSPT) Season 5 Ho-Chunk Gaming Wisconsin came to a close on Sunday night.

Sell managed to beat a record field of 393 players to win the title and $97,539 first-place prize. Sell began the day with just 14 big blinds, but managed to score his victory over 2012 World Series of Poker National Championship runner-up Nik Stone, who he beat in heads-up play.

Final Table Results

Place Player Prize
1 Jason Sell $97,539
2 Nik Stone $53,370
3 Ryan Jefferson $35,335
4 Taylor Tollefson $23,925
5 Mike Deis $18,404
6 Jun Kim $14,723
7 Travis Lauson $12,882
8 DJ Buckley $11,040
9 Nick Jivkov $9,202
10 Jason Seefeld $7,361

 

Sell started his play with a great start, getting lucky with a queen-nine against ace-king to double straight out of the gates, and it was mostly smooth sailing from then until the final table.

But while Sell found success, many other notables struggled. Kou Vang was denied his fourth consecutive MSPT final table, while Day 1a chip leader Aaron Johnson, Day 2 leader Chris Burmeister, and the experienced David Gutfruend all hit the rails, unable to make it to the final table.

Being a WSOP bracelet winner did little to help Nick Jivkov win this battle. He was the first to fall, alongside Jason Seefeld, when Jivkov pushed all in under the gun and Ryan Jefferson shipped over the top from the cutoff. Seefeld pushed his 300,000-chip stack all in and the blinds were out of the way. The three-way battle saw Jefferson walk away victorious with his double aces. Despite being ousted at the same time, Jivkov placed higher than Seefeld since he had more chips at the beginning of the hand.

This wouldn’t be the last three-way all in of the match, in fact two more would follow. DJ Buckley busted a short time after Jivkov and Seefeld in the second three-way all in, while the third three-way resulted in the eliminations of Jun Kim and Travis Lauson in sixth and seventh place, respectively. All five players eliminated thus far were, amazingly, from three-way all ins.

Mike Deis exited in fifth place when his King and Jack was outdrawn by Sell’s King and 10. He managed one place higher than his performance in the MSPT Majestic Star just a few weeks prior.

Fourth-place Taylor Tollefson ran smack into Sell’s rockets, leaving just three players. They were locked in a two hour battle of three-handed play that saw several huge swings, including seven doubles by the short stack in all-in pots.

The eighth was upon them when Stone opened to 250,000 and Jefferson called. But Sell put everyone all in from the big blind, and Stone folded while Jefferson snap-called. That was his fatal move, after which Sell dealt him a heart-breaking third-place exit and over $35,000 in prize money.

Play came to an end after a short heads-up match between Sell and Stone. In the last hand, Sell put the much-shorter-stacked Stone all in and managed to make a flopped pair of fives hold up. Stone took home $53,370 for his runner-up finish, while Sell became champion and captured the $97,539 first-place prize.

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Delve Into the Mind of Poker Pro Liv Boeree

by | Published: Monday, March 24th, 2014

If you’ve ever wanted to learn the tricks of some of the best poker professionals – how they can successfully manipulate and bluff their way to winning a game – then today is your lucky day.

Team PokerStars Pro Liv Boeree will feature on a new series from the Discovery Channel that will explore the psychology of the human mind. Earlier this month Discovery Networks International commissioned the show known as The Mind Control Freaks for 10 30-minute shows which will begin airing internationally in April.

Boeree will be one of four experts who demonstrate how to use psychological tricks and mind manipulation on the public to get them to surprising things. As a poker pro, Boeree regularly has to manipulate others into thinking she doesn’t have a chance at beating their hand and must use psychological tricks to represent it, but not overtly. She will be joined by three other co-hosts from just as manipulative professions: Alexis Conran (magician), Lewis Le Val (hypnotist), and Pete Wardell (sleight-of-hand pro).

“The show explores the various ways people’s minds can be affected and ‘controlled’ and demonstrates some fascinating psychological phenomena,” Boeree told PokerNews on Thursday. “My background as a poker player definitely helped me throughout filming. I can’t tell you much more until it airs but it was one of the most challenging and entertaining shows I’ve been involved in and I can’t wait for it to come out.”

Boeree has said that filming is now complete and she’s getting ready to go back on the road travelling with the European Poker Tour for the next few months.

This won’t be Boeree’s first appearance on a non-poker television show that documents her manipulative skills and bluffing techniques that have helped her win over $2M in total prize money from poker tournaments and one European Poker Tour trophy. In 2007 she appeared on Golden Balls, a British game show that ends with the final two contestants electing to split the prize or attempt to steal it. Boeree successfully bluffed her way to a £6,500 by manipulating her partner into thinking they would split it.

She’s clearly got the manipulation and bluffing skills down pat, now it’s your turn to check out her mind control show and see if you can steal any of her tricks for yourself.

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Improve Your Game at Carbon Poker

by | Published: Saturday, March 22nd, 2014

The Carbon Poker Carbon Poker Odds Calculator is a new industry leading poker software that will improve your game by utilizing hand probabilities, win odds, pot odds, and opposition patterns to give you the best possible chance to win. This tool also has a hand replayer built-in to help analyze your game and train you to become a better poker player.

The Free Poker Odds Calculator:

  • Calculates outs, pot odds, and possibilities instantly
  • Offers real time opponent statistics overlays on table
  • Has a built in hand replayer to review your play and find leaks
  • Is perfect for beginners and experienced online poker players alike

This tool, free to download for all members, will not only improve your game with stats and probabilities, but it will also keep you organized with player notes and the ability to track your past table experiences.

What is the Carbon Poker Carbon Poker Odds Calculator?

The Carbon Poker Odds Calculator is an advanced online poker tool that offers instantaneous poker odds on all your hands, real time opposition statistics, as well as a hand replayer that will help you review and analyze your game. But don’t worry, it may sound complicated but the calculator is actually incredibly simple to understand and has a display with easy to use customization and functionality.

The Odds Calculator works on all No Limit, Pot Limit, and Fixed Limit Texas Hold’em games. This tool works for play money as well as real, so you can practice and hone your skills without spending a dime. It can also be utilized in ring or tournament games and events as well—there is no limitation to getting help in your poker play.

How exactly will this help improve my game?

Carbon Poker’s Odds Calculator instantly projects stats from your hand while also gathering information on your opponents to calculate poker win odds, pot odds, outs, and your table position. This information is available immediately, which means you get this valuable info without over-thinking, leaving you free to concentrate on winning. The player stats you receive from the calculator will help give you a better understanding of your playing style as well as that of your opponents. Become a better poker player by taking the guess work out of your game and make definitive moves with the Odds Calculator from Carbon Poker.

What are some of the features?

  • Win Odds – A powerful and sophisticated algorithm based on your pocket cards, the community cards shown, as well as the exact number of players in the hand.
  • Pot Odds – The ratio of the amount of money in the pot paired with how much money it takes to call.
  • Expected Value (EV) – The expected value for your personal hole cards and basically the average amount of large bets this hand will make or lose.
  • Groups – This divides the starting hands into 9 separate groups. Group 1 is the strongest; group 9 the weakest. By using the strategy of only playing poker hands that have profitable EV (Expected Value).
  • Outs – Unseen cards still left in the deck that will improve your hand to a possible winner after the flop.
  • Player Stats – Compiles and stores Player Stats automatically on your computer by reading the log files supplied by CarbonPoker. Our Poker Odds Calculator actually remembers the action and automatically recalls it for you.
  • Profiling Icons – Allows you to assign profiling icons to a player when the program collects more than 40 hands of data for that player. This allows you to indentify a player as loose, passive, aggressive, neutral and much, much more.
  • HUD (Heads Up Display) – Displays everything you could possibly need regarding player stats, win/pot odds and mucked cards in a very manageable and easy to understand way on your game table.
  • Hand Replayer – Allows you to visualize hands you played with the exact Player Stats and Win Odds (for yourself and players with known cards).
  • Mucked Hands Display – Info from the files developed from hand history. If there are some mucked cards in a game, the poker client will write this information to the hand history file.
  • Manual Poker Odds Calculator – Allows you to double click on the cards display area and launch the Manual Calculator. When you are in-play you can also replace one card to another by double clicking it.
  • Customizable Options – You have the ability to change a number of options to customize your Hand Replayer, Player Notes, Deck Colors, View Modes and more.

The odds calculator is cutting edge software that is simple to use and will help you elevate your game to become the best poker player you can be. To begin playing your game with this amazing tool, just open your real money account at Carbon Poker Carbon Poker today.

 


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