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Micro-Small Stakes Full Ring Discussion of up to 1/2 online no-limit pot-limit Texas hold'em full ring games, situations and strategies

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Old 02-01-2013, 03:45 AM   #1
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 43
Story and a few questions

I've had a long tortured history with online poker. Looking back, I think I've just managed to lose my mind as this game will do to you. In live cash games, I'm a lifetime winner at 1-2NLHE, but a 2K downswing a little more than a year ago drove me from the game. For about the last 7 or 8 months I've put 20 bucks in at Carbon Poker seeing what I could do with it, the idea being I would slowly built a bankroll up to 500 or 1K and earn my way back to the live table, which, frankly, I enjoy more. Typically, I would run that up to $50 or something, then have a bad session and tilt it away, or get bored with micro-micro stakes and move over to limit games that were probably too steep for my bankroll and, really, just kind of fritter it away.

What's changed is a few things.
I discovered and I think even the rudimentary free info on the site has been pretty valuable to me. Also, I made myself sit down and watch Live at the Bike. I'm a big fan of both Bart Hanson and Dave Tuchman and I think just immersing myself back into LATB has been very helpful in just getting back into a frame of mind that has allowed me to think about the game better than I have going all the way back to that live downswing.

Using I also noticed that over time I've actually been a winning player online as long as I limited my NLHE games to .5-.10 and .10-.25 and PLAYED THEM FULL RING!!! It was an epiphany.

So, I decided to jump back in at .10-.25 even though I only had enough in my account to play one table with one buy in. If I lost it, I would have reloaded in a day or two or a week or tried to build it back up playing small tourneys with VIP points. But I didn't lose.

In a couple of weeks, playing, honestly, from 150 to 300 hands a night on a single table, I've run $22 into $472. I haven't sucked out on the river on anybody in this time, at least not when I haven't been priced in. But I know I've been fortunate. I've been sucked out on a few times, but never for more than half or two-thirds ($10 to $15) of an original buy-in. That is, I haven't gone heads up, monster vs. monster, when we're both 250 BB deep and lost $75 in a single hand on a suckout.

A few other observations.

- I'm winning much more with my big hands. I think most people check-raise the turn on their big hands and that's certainly been my pattern in the past, but lately when I've hit the flop big in position and been bet into, I've won much bigger pots by popping it back immediately. In my mind, I'm trying to represent a bluff. Anyway, it has encouraged opponents to come back over the top of me, marrying them to losing hands.

(Perhaps all I'm really saying is I've learned more ways to vary my play).

- I imagine it comes very hard for 1-2 NL live players, and it certainly did for me, but I think I've finally made a breakthrough with the concept of 3-betting. I may be no better at reading the strength of my early position opponents when they bet, but with playable hands in position or even marginal hands when I think I have a read, I've finally started three-betting with a little regularity. If I'm played back at strongly, I can just let it go. If I'm called and hate the board, I understand I don't have to C-bet. Also, this new aggression of mine, I think, has made it harder for my opponents to hide their monster hands from me and I think I lose less against those monsters. In the past, somehow, I would be bled dry on every street. That can still be an issue for me, but it's better now.

– Plain and simple, I don't defend my blinds without real hands and I don't bet without a real hand if its folded to me in the small blind. That is, if I'm going to open in the small blind, it's going to be with a hand I'm willing to four-bet with or at least confidently call a three-bet with.

- I seem to be seeing between 25 percent and 30 percent of flops, and I'm really only limping with small pocket pairs, suited connectors or suited gapped cards. Or, put another way, I'm limping with cards I hope to see a cheap flop with and hit a monster or a monster draw. I'm not limping with, or playing putrid hands like A8 or Q9 (maybe this is simply me saying I'm entering hands with a plan rather than a hope).

OK, that's the story. I'm on a roll.
I'm trying to be honest with myself, knowing I'm running well, but also trying to identify some things I'm doing that have at least accelerated my running well.

So, I'm wondering if any of these "breakthroughs" reverberate with anybody, from table discipline (full-ring, NLHE at .5-.10 or .10-.25), coming to grips with three-betting, to the betting patterns I've described. I'm also wondering what anybody thinks about the level of play at .10-.25 full ring NLHE at Carbon Poker.

I'm also wondering what others think of the free offerings of or even the premium offerings of And finally, I'm wondering how quick Carbon Poker is to pay out withdrawals, because I'm very close to wanting to pull $300 out and take a shot at 1-2NLHE live cash at the local casino. BTW, I could go to the casino tomorrow with $300 and afford the loss, but I have this thing about poker paying for my poker. When I go back, I want to go back with money I've won online.

Thanks so much for your time and consideration.
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Old 02-01-2013, 03:56 AM   #2
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 43
Re: Story and a few questions

Somehow I managed to post this twice.
Please ignore this version of it and go t the other thread.
I'd delete this one if I knew how.
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Old 02-01-2013, 08:37 AM   #3
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Posts: 5,098
Re: Story and a few questions

No, having read both from start to finish I prefer this thread, so keep this one and delete the other one.
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Old 02-01-2013, 10:47 AM   #4
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 666
Re: Story and a few questions

interesting story, i kind a find my own in there as wel.

The breakthroughs you mention seem pretty standard stuff to me, just the 25 - 30% vpip seems on the bigger side for a TAG, but i dont think you're a standard tight aggressive player so i think thats ok. just 1 tip: you might want to mix in some raises with suided connectors where you'd limp them all the time. It mixes up your range so if you raise opponents dont know if you have AK or 45s.
beyond, i think .10/.25 is tha zone for you.

Gr. Daikie
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