Wednesday, 1 August 2012


Hey guys!

I feeling like flexing my creative muscle once more today, so I'm going to write this blog discussing my recent life decision to play full time poker. The mixed reaction I've received was obviously expected and well received. From the, "Way to throw your life out the window..." to the, "Man, I can't wait to watch you on TV someday!" it's all been extremely eye opening. Everyone I'm in contact with is looking out for my best interests, and I'm extremely determined to make something epic out of this decision. Be it to prove all my naysayers wrong, to make my corner proud, or just to achieve a level of satisfaction with my game/life. This will work, and I will pound and pound at this until I achieve it.

I've had plenty of discussions with fellow pros that I know both personally and from 2+2 forums. Their main advice throughout all of this was eye opening. Upon review and advice from close mates, I'm going to take a temporary step back to 25NL until I reach 100-120 BI. While my $/hour drops a touch, my winrate improves with the softer tables, and I can feel more comfortable multi-tabling. The key here is to set precise, demanding checkpoints that DON'T DEPEND ON RUNNING GOOD. Goals that I can aim towards this month, that regardless of how things go, I can look back and say I've achieved. I believe this will be healthy for creating stability long term. I also want to share my ideas behind my maths. So here we go...

August Plan of Attack

25NL, 8 table 4 Zoom, 4 Ring
Win rate: 16.38 bb / 100 hands (Based on 26000 hands, probably not enough. Maybe revise.)
Expected win rate: 10 bb / 100 hands (Not that I believe it's this low, but preparing for the (not) worst)
Hands per hour: ~ 1400 hph.

Expected $/hour = (10 * 0.25) * (1400/100) = $35 / hour. (This makes me happy to have left my $14/hour job)

Monthly nut:
Rent - $550
Food - $15/day = $465
Phone - $60
Other - $425 (I can't think of anything else right off the top of my head...)
Total Monthly Nut: $1500 (Told you I was low maintenance. This will go up over time.)

Man hours needed to break even: $1500 / $35 = 42.85 Hours
This is either going to be too easy, or I'm going to run like Stephen Hawking... I plan on putting in 100+

August 2012 Goal Checklist

[ ] - 175,000 hands
[ ] - 7,500 VPP (PlatinumStar)
[ ] - 20 Hours of HHR
[ ] - Taking sufficient shots at 50NL
[ ] - Keep my monthly nut around $1500

Anyway guys, I had a 'trial' day today. I hope to do a lot more tomorrow. As expected, I've been dealing with sorting life out, packing, answering to a lot of questions, synthesizing information and advice... so needless to say, I'm not overly impressed with how today went. I think tomorrow will prove to be a lot better. I can't tell you guys how much I appreciate you all. To quote Philly D, "I love yo faces!"


July '12 - Recap

...too lazy to do a writeup, be back next month.


Thursday, 26 July 2012

Beating The Inner Bad Beat

It dawned on me in the middle of today's grind that haven't written a blog in a while. I've put together a bunch of lazy vlogs, but I haven't had the patience to sit and write lately. My motivation stemmed from taking a step back today and realizing during the last few days, I had been breaking the Cardinal Sin of Poker. Bad Beat spewing. Maybe it's my paranoid mind, but I'm pretty sure all of my friends have deleted me on BBM, unfriended me on Facebook, unfollowed me on Twitter. Total disconnect. (@JayKon17 #shamelessplug) I mean, I'd delete me with the negativity I've been vomiting. A downswing is something I can usually take with a grain of salt - it happens. Cards will fall however they decide to fall, and sometimes there's a run of unlucky rivers that make us shake our head. We reaffirm that if we stay consistent, we will win in the long run. It's the model of any profitable poker player. Of course, it's extremely easy to say this after seven final tables this weekend for $3.2k. Alas, that is not the place I decided to write this bad beat vlog from. I decided, with a heap of free time this week, I would put in a full week of solid professional grinding. Test out my mental endurance, break in my new-found bankroll, and see if I could handle the schedules of my fellow poker playing comrades. I've woke up at 9 am and grinded all the way til sunfall, playing every juicy tournament I could get my hands on. Monday, disaster. Tuesday, disaster. Wednesday, same thing. Train wreck smashing into a catastrophe inside of a clusterf*#k. Picture the worst you could possibly imagine running, perhaps the worst you've ever ran over your career. It gets worse. Much worse. Luck knows know boundaries, takes no prisoners, and has no memory. I've only just begun to figure this out.

Happy July! This can't be a bad beat vlog...
Sometimes there will be long stretches of run-bad that make you shake your head in despair, questioning why you even play poker. You may insist the software is rigged. You might wonder what you did to deserve cooler after cooler. You might lose your cool, and throw your wireless mouse against your desk. You might also feel like an idiot picking it up in seven pieces, hoping it still works. I have the urge to bring up every single two-outer, three-outer, etc. I've encountered the last few days - but what good would that do? (*cough* KK < JJ for starting stacks, all in pre in the $55 was a good one... sorry.) Anyone who has ever played poker knows the 5% seems to get there all too often. Statistical variance can be difficult for any poker player to deal with, but I feel there's more to combating the "Bad Beat Bug" than simply playing through it. It isn't a matter of 'explaining losses' because whether I'm a profitable player is in question - it's not. It's about searching endlessly for a 

Different Outcome = Different Game?
...not so Happy July!
I have friends who have played poker, day in and day out for 4-5 years. They've made thousands of dollars, gone thru 100 buy-in downswings - they've seen it all.  However, what keeps them together as a consummate professional is the end result. The consistent finishes. The positive figures not at the end of a day, a week, or even a month. It is entirely possible for a winning player to go days, weeks, even (God forbid...) months without seeing positive figures. As you can see, there is a definite contrast from the first 200 tournaments I played this month, and the latter 200. I've done about four or five hours of reviewing each of the last 200 tournaments, and I slowly began to realize a horrifying trend. As I lost more and more, my general style became more and more passive-bad. Before, I was comfortable 3 and 4-bet shoving hands like 88, AQo, KQs, etc, and now I was too stunned to realize how much value I was missing in folding them. This review was my first step on turning my month back around. I found myself fishing desperately hoping to hit a flops, putting myself in terribad situations in which my play was not optimal, and blaming a 'suck-out' to excuse my terrible play the entire tournament. This created even more stress, and I even began folding in spots I usually know better. I was shell-shocked of seeing any community cards. All these small holes in my game would have gone unnoticed without a couple hours of review. Review is so so so so so so so so important to progress as a good player. Be weary of sub-optimal plays you may be making in the midst of a downswing. While it is entirely possible you are just 'running bad', there's no such thing as playing the 'perfect tournament'. Always look to improve your game, whether you are winning or losing.

Brand new mouse? Brand new game!
You Suck Out Too
What bugs me most as a semi-professional poker player is hearing the line, "I never get there!" indicating that the card you are looking for literally NEVER hits. I can't even count on 17 octopuses' (octopi?) tentacles how many times I've needed a two-outer and miraculously got there. Am I proud of it? Obviously not. Do I remember it? Obviously not. Does it happen? Heck, yes. In the poker player's mind, we remember the crushing blows, the ridiculous 2-outers to send us packing. We relieve our minds of the times we needed a miracle to survive. When we are bad beat, the brain instantly sends negative chemicals to our body, sending the body into stress. It's all chemistry, bro. When your KK meets AJ preflop, and you see an Ace in the window, or having your AA cracked by AK on a final table bubble, or running KQ into AQ to finish 11th in the Big $11 for $490... *sigh* They happen. They just happen. The fish wouldn't come out and pay you off 9 times out of 10 if they didn't. The fact that in poker, a professional and a rookie can sit down, play poker for hours, and have an unfavourable end result for the pro is why the average person dismisses poker as "purely luck". This is also why we know poker can be extremely profitable for those of us that study the game extensively. But I digress, if you aren't brand new to poker, you've definitely needed a miracle four-flush or runner-runner to stay alive in the past, and you have (probably) hit it somewhere close to the expected amount of times. This logic also applies to your opponent's draws. You aren't perfect, and you can't expect to fold KK in hopes your opponent only shoves with AA.

Give It A Rest!
The absolute worst thing about poker, is it can be unrelenting no matter the situation. When your $5000 bankroll is suddenly down to $4100, one may find this as a source of panic. When poker players panic, they begin to lose control and bad things happen. The difference between that $4100 bankroll becoming $5000 and $2000 is all about how they react to losing.
Too many times I've gone to search for a micro-stakes player I know is on a downswing, and find them in a $320 tournament. Being a non-confrontational guy, I generally ask what they're doing playing a $300+ tourney and the answer is always the same:

"I'm taking a shot, bro!"

In saying this, I'm completely guilty of doing this in the past (and present, but I'm a lot more controlled than I used to be) The worst thing to tell a player going through a downswing is to tell them to take a break altogether. It's difficult, believe me. I know. Accomplishing any type of work outside of poker during a downswing can be difficult without the underlying stress of a downswing coming to surface. I found myself at tennis last night, trying to escape the stress of another losing session. I played poorly, played with a bitter attitude, and it wasn't a fun experience for anybody. The correct way to handle a downswing is to focus on something you can't lose at. Build yourself some confidence back, and you'll find yourself crushing again. My turning point was this morning. I went for a run, did a nice muscular endurance exercise, ate some healthy food, and the returned to the game with a fresh state of mind. I didn't have a great day today, but it was my first positive day this week. I am extremely happy with being able to say that. 

Give yourself a chance to reset, and you'll see great results in due time. You may even have to move down limits (and not up) and work your way back to the top of the poker world. After all, a little bad luck can't keep us down. :-)

PS - GREAT Bankroll Management Article Here:

Friday, 22 June 2012

Vloggity Vlog

...just candid thoughts in good humour. Enjoy, and maybe take something from it?

We'll call it a true 'recap':

Friday, 8 June 2012

Variance BLOWS

Not a legit blog post... just want to show the effects of tilt and variance.

Even in those damn micro stakes.

Monday, 28 May 2012

...And Then?

I used to be a firm believer in karma. I used to believe that the universe would somehow always find a way to balance a negative outcome for a positive one. I used to rationalize everything that happened in life to the equation for the conservation of momentum - energy (everything) cannot be created, only transferred. I grew up with the idea that God would reward me for good deeds, and punish me for my transgressions, however trivial in nature. However, if there's something I can take from the last couple years of my life, it's that life doesn't owe you shit. Not a damn thing. If you do what you've always done, you're going to get what you've always got. Bottom line. Life is nothing but a series of hundreds of billions of dependant probabilities. I say dependant because I feel no two decisions are completely unrelated (The Butterfly Effect). In the same way a coin flip depends on what pocket I took the coin out of, or how I toss it, nothing in your life is purely random. Where you are right now is entirely dependant on every single choice you have made previous to the moment in which you stand.

However, as with all things, time has brought me to a crossroads. Call it a quarter-life mental breakdown, minus the breakdown. 

** In the same way John Mayer will never win the World Series, and Albert Pujols will never write a triple-platinum album, I can never be every single thing I want to be in life. We are all victims to age, as we are also held victim to our own capabilities. I could train for 10 years and I'm 99% sure I still won't be the fastest man on Earth. Our generation is fascinated by seeing 'experts' on YouTube, always accomplishing incredible things. My problem is that I have an extremely obsessive personality. When I see someone do something incredible, my first instinct is to figure out what I can accomplish and replicate the feat. Juggling? Got it. Rubik's Cube? Sure thing. A plethora of chip tricks? ...kind of. Being multi-talented, dexterous and intelligent is a blessing, but what does it accomplish? Yes, I plan on putting out albums someday. I also plan on being a world-renowned poker phenom. But why? While I believe I'm on the right track to doing both, I believe I have quite a way to go. What comes next though? I don't want to live the life of a degenerate poker player, but at the same time I'm willing to commit my life to. My goal is not to live someone else's life, or fulfill someone else's goals. Life, as it should be, is a buffet of "Do-Whatever-The-Fuck-You-Want" and that's how it is meant to be lived, imho. (On a side note, poker is not a game of ego. In fact, it's the opposite. Keep your emotions in check, because when the fish you've been jawing for 20 minutes gets AA, the more emotionally involved you are, the worse and more embarrassing it's going to be.)

Anyways, as par the usual... I'm going to leave this blog post with loose ends. Maybe I'll tie em up someday...

Cheers, Jon.

Ps, 2 more weeks til Lindsay. I'm more than excited.

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Time For Leaving - Cover

Again, not a proper blog post. Procrastination at its finest.

Here's a video of me covering Daniel Wesley's "Time For Leaving"


Sunday, 20 May 2012

Motivation (Or Lack Thereof...)

This morning, I've already succumbed to the reality that this post ends terribly. I have no motivation to write, except the panic of having gone a week without any good ideas. So instead... I'm just leaving you a picture. 

When I work up the will to write about something exciting... I'll find some inner strength to write my heart out.

- Jay

How I picture every foreign player when they win a big pot... :-)

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Marathon Man

Sore? Whatchu know about running a marathon? Whatchu know about WRITING one? (Warning, we've got a marathon of a blog post here.)

On Saturday, I finally owned up to myself and decided to take on a long distance run. Okay, so it wasn't quite a marathon. However, for a guy who wakes up and pushes buttons hoping for miracles, the thought of a 25 km run was almost laughable. 25 km? Pfft, no way my three-years-out-of-high-school body could survive the first 100 meters. Let alone how affected my ADD-riddled brain would be, enduring the monotony of running constantly passing field after field. It seemed like the epitome of a horrible Saturday afternoon. However, in the first kilometer of my run, it really dawned on me what I was missing by staying so inactive all these months. Yes, I was sweating instantly (weather: flawless) but there was something more about running than just being in the fresh air. Freedom. It's a simple little kind of free, listlessly floating through the air, doing your body some good, putting your body into motion, connecting to your music while you connect to yourself. It really evokes a lot of self-reflection, something that in my opinion, is lost in every day life. We all do what we do, but in reality, we never really question our own interior motivations. In the words of the great Rick James, "I never just did things just to do them." (Mind you, he's talking about grinding his feet on Eddie Murphy's couch, but I digress...) All I'm saying, is that deciding to go for a run can be difficult for anybody, but that's not the point. It's about goal-setting and reaching your goals. Once you set your mind to doing anything and you accomplish your goal, the emotional reward is absolutely worth it. In poker, it just happens to be a nice monetary reward for success as well. :-) The physical toll of running... well, maybe don't start with 25km. Three days later, and this poor fragile body is still feeling the effects.

Currently, I'm sitting here now, watching a couple great poker players grind out various final tables for thousands of dollars. Incredible? Absolutely. During my final table run of the $27.50, I was asked about how I stayed so cavalier. I was talking to a friend of mine about the rush of the actual play of a final table, and how detached it actually becomes about the money. It's totally in the competitive nature of not only the poker player, but human beings. This gives me a good life thesis statement: The drive to succeed at everything is what motivates me. As I write this, Daniel Negreanu is heads up for the 5 card NL draw bracelet. As he tweets about it, he doesn't mention the $11,000 first prize, but the bracelet. A bracelet! On topic, I got to thinking about the future and how, someday, I would approach playing someone like Negreanu, Dwan, or Hellmuth at a table. Would I be seated solely for the thrill of the "celebrity effect"? Poker is beautiful in a sense that you have that easy, but costly access to playing with the best there is. In real life, I can't call up Roger Federer to ask for a tennis match. Roll up to the Bellagio, and you could find yourself playing against the very pros you watch on TV. Of course, I say this candidly, because I unless I win a Sunday Million in the near future I don't see this happening any time soon. (#whoknows) (A friend of a friend just chopped the $11 deep stack for $1k! Woot! What a grind!) After getting fairly psyched up for today's $11 400k, I busted two hands in, nut flush < full house. (Ad9s < TsTd on a 228T5, dddd board. Check-check turn = Fun times for my stack on the river.) Either way, my passion for actually playing has subsided, and it's actually quite depressing. I watch all this action happen around me, and I know the correct plan of action is to put in volume. I just can't will myself to get over this downswing by investing more of what I can't afford right now, both in time and money. However, I'm really starting to focus on the psychology behind what is actually taking place at the poker table. It's a nice, new perspective. 

Anyway, another day of life and whatever comes along with it! Cheers! :-)

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Nuts and Bolts

Over the weekend, I had the privilege of playing at Live 88.5's 3rd Annual Poker "Event" Freeroll at Casino Lac-Leamy. Overall, this is one of the best "I'm in" decisions I've made in a while. Met a lot of great people, had a lot of great laughs, and regardless if I'm in Ottawa next year or not, I think I have to be here for this tournament next year. It ended up being a winner take all, $1000 grand prize package. 60 person field, 15 minute blinds, 8850 starting stacks... it was just an incredible experience. On a side note, it's nice waking up the next morning, hearing your name on the morning radio not for playing incredibly well, but being overly-entertaining. The day had a bit of everything, great bluffs, great action, great sandwiches (of course horrible, horrible beats) Fwiw, I finished 9th after a fish running at least 80/10 limp-called my UTG+1 10bb shove with J9s. If my name was Phil Hellmuth, it would've ended with a tirade for sure. After a KJ3 board, I pretty much gave up hope. The 10 on the turn gave me a good rush, but a 3 on the river sent me packing! Although, after seeing a friend's TT go down to 66 on a T6Q46 board, I couldn't even stomach calling it a bad beat. In summation, I'm happy I played every hand like a freakin' genius, but I'm even happier with both my social positivity. For the first time in a while, I felt like I was playing poker for recreation. I can get used to how that feels... 

On the online poker realm, I've been taking it a little easier as of late. Doing more with my time aside from grinding for 8 hours a day. Not only do I hope this spurs some balance in me, but also opens my mind to some mistakes I've been making due to the monotonicity of pushing buttons. I've began walking for the sake of walking, pushing my body to max itself in different areas - both mentally and physically. For the last few weeks, I've felt like an unhealthy degen. Wake up, play poker, eat, sleep, rinse and repeat. I've been putting 'life' off by telling myself to survive the next month until my new start in Lindsay. When putting that in perspective, I feel I've used that excuse too many times in life. Get through public school, high school is coming... get through Grade 11, grade 12 is close... slush off Grade 12, University is coming... etc. To inspire change, you have to take action in the 'now'. My goal to combat this is to actually accomplish something important before I leave. Yes, I'll be busy more with work picking up at The Source, but I feel I can contribute more to my own life, and the life of those around me. Here's to making the most out of life, and squeezing out every last second. :)

Anyway, no graphs or charts to share half in part to lack of playing, but also to Pokertracker crashing, leaving me with a corrupted database. When I decide to throw a tournament session in, I'll be sure to post the results!


ps, let me know... when it comes to blogging - is shorter better? (Is this short enough?) You all know I'm very self-critical. >:)

You can find me on Twitter @JayKon17

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

From Micro to Micro

Late night blogfest, this either ends with a masterpiece, or a master-piece of crap.

I took a completely different route from the norm today, and I went with a backer to play some daily tourney's. I decided I wanted to offer someone the chance (ahem, do me the favour...) of buying 50% of my profits in the Big $5.50 and Big $8.80. Thankfully, I found someone with a similar passion to succeed, and a great skill set who was willing to take a risk on a complete stranger. To make a long, crying story short, I didn't get to play the $5.50, tanked the $8.80, got bad beat out of the $22 and Big $11 (AJ < A2 twice, wouldn't you know?), and played the deep stack $11 like an absolute donk. The concept of playing poker with the pressure of performing well from an egotistical standpoint, along with the pressure of meeting financial goals has actually been a refreshing experience. I found myself more careful and decisive (and yes, sometimes admittedly weak) in my decision making. Either way, I tanked first 5 tournaments only to finish semi-deep in the last one. $26 for a $4 buy-in. Yay. (Still failed today, but it was a great experience. I can't thank my backer enough.)

Anywho, I'm going to write more in the morning. I've suddenly been hit by a brick wall of tired... Zzzzzz.

The difference between sleeping from 12-7 and sleeping from 5-1 is incredible. It's like our bodies are one with the Earth's rotation. My body somehow knew I slept during the right time, and I feel like I achieved maximum... sleeping... potential? (I'm... Ron... Burgundy?) Honestly, this is one routine I can get used to forcing myself into. I find it funny how sleep starts as something you fight off as a child, to something you can't get enough of as you get older. There aren't a lot of things like that in life. Sleep and money are two of those things.

Older. Brings me back to a good conversation I had with my backer yesterday. The last few months, for the sake of being blunt, I've felt extremely old. Sure, anyone over the age of 25 will scoff, call me naive, and say 20 is such a young age, I've got my whole life ahead of me, etc. Life and age is all about perspective. It's about who you surround yourself with. I've always been used to surrounding myself in an older group. I was the grade ten student, walking around flirting with the grade 12 crowd. As a matter of fact, I even had trouble adapting to meeting people in my University program because of my put-offish attitude towards 'younger' people. I totally come across as condescending sometimes, regarding myself as 'higher' than someone of a less mature stature, and it's a personality flaw I'm making as my quarter-year's resolution to fix. People grow, but it's all a process. Processes take time, and being so adhd-riddled, this is a huge barrier for me. I have difficulties coming to terms with NOT telling a friend in high school why his/her 'drama' is laughable compared to problems in real life. Nobody wants to hear that their problems are trivial, yet in my head I feel it solves all problems to say, "Get over it" because that's my most used problem-solving method. In summary, I'm a condescending prick, and it's hopefully fixable. Rant, rant, rant... back to poker...

I'm going to go into more detail in a later post, but I've decided I'm only going to play 5NL in between tournaments, as tournaments are what I know best. It's like learning to ride a motorcycle, only to ride a bicycle to work every day. This same ideology applies in poker. Tournament junkies probably have to face the most vitriol because of the rarity of their winning sessions. My backer exuded such a cavalier attitude to finishing 30th in the $5r last night, I was astonished. The composure and confidence he brings into every game is something I look forward to promoting in my game. This brings me to my next point. It really doesn't matter what you do in life, as long as you yourself can rationalize doing it. If the best possible discourse to fix something in your life involves something that defies the social norm, in the long run, who cares? Once you lose all barriers of defying a cookie-cutter life, your life will start flourishing because of it.

That's it, I'm done. I'm having an issue with my Pokertracker (it thinks I won every tournament yesterday, which I guess isn't such a bad thing...) so this post will be void of graphs, unfortunately. This will be fixed by my next post. :) Cheers, and thanks again for all your feedback. Greatly appreciated.


Hand of the Day

PokerStars - $4+$0.40|100/200 NL - Holdem - 9 players

UTG+1: 10,816.00
UTG+2: 13,296.00
Hero (MP): 4,757.00
MP+1: 6,143.00
CO: 3,546.00
BTN: 10,770.00
SB: 12,024.00
BB: 23,847.00
UTG: 11,456.00

UTG+1 posts ante 25.00, UTG+2 posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, MP+1 posts ante 25.00, CO posts ante 25.00, BTN posts ante 25.00, SB posts ante 25.00, BB posts ante 25.00, UTG posts ante 25.00, SB posts SB 100.00, BB posts BB 200.00

Pre Flop: (pot: 525.00) Hero has 3d 3c

UTG raises to 400.00, fold, fold, Hero calls 400.00, MP+1 calls 400.00, fold, fold, SB calls 300.00, BB calls 200.00

Flop: (2225.00, 5 players) 2d Kd 2c
SB checks, BB checks, UTG checks, Hero checks, MP+1 checks

Turn: (2225.00, 5 players) 3s
SB bets 600.00, fold, fold, Hero calls 600.00, fold

River: (3425.00, 2 players) 9h
SB bets 1,800.00, Hero raises to 3,732.00 and is all-in, SB calls 1,932.00

Hero shows 3d 3c (Full House, Threes full of Twos) (Pre 53%, Flop 13%, Turn 95%)
SB shows 9s Kh (Two Pair, Kings and Nines) (Pre 47%, Flop 87%, Turn 5%)
Hero wins 10,889.00

Friday, 20 April 2012

Wake Up Call

One of the best mornings I have ever had.

Yesterday, for lack of a better term, was a slopshow in my micro-grinding quest. My level of play was admittedly poor after taking some harsh beats at the tables. One of my goals should've ultimately been to leave the tables and go for a walk as soon as I felt my play was sub-optimal, but instead I broke a couple rules, took a few chances, and ended the day with high profits.

I came back to tournament life.

After vowing to stay the **** away until I reached 100 MTT buy-ins, I donked a fifth of my stack in a $2r (12K) this morning. The only justice here is that I played unbelievably well, only to finish 38th for $55. (AA < JTo on a xxxTJ board, all in pre.) My former self would've tilted the rest of his bankroll off in a cash game, but instead, realizing with only $70 in my new Stars bankroll, I needed to regain composure and went deep in the $3 turbo as well. So much for not playing tournaments anymore... (I blame the Assassinato, for having so many final table announcements and making +25k in the last week or so.)

Anyway, the main reason for this post is to announce I may be leaving Ottawa for the summer to go work with a friend in Lindsay. However comfortable I've become here, I'm almost positive I can't turn down the offer presented to me. While grinding the $5NL for profit has been, for lack of a better word, semi-non-profitable, I can't wait to have a steady 4-digit cheque to look forward to again every month, regardless of variance, bad play, or tilt. I am both excited and nervous for this venture, but by September, I hope my Stars bankroll and life bankroll is high enough to support myself while going to school. (If not, I've flirted with the idea of taking a year off again to work.) I realized a lot of my decisions lately have been based on pleasing others over doing what I truly want to do. (ie, NOT leaving $2k on Pokerstars, packing my bags, and grinding a sustainable income while living in the Dominican for a month or two, making internet cash, catching some waves.) 

Anyway, this post is long enough for your short attention spans, I'll just leave you with my sad cash chart for April 19th, and a hand of the day. Thanks again for taking time to read this, as I've said many, many, many, many, many times, it means the world to me to know this isn't all for naught. (For the record, I'm going to add a third chart, showing cumulative cash+tournament earnings as well. Just for all you graph junkies. :)

...enjoy this first hand of the Big $5.50 this morning as much as I did. (Literally, I laughed, shut my laptop, fell asleep.)


PokerStars - $5+$0.50|15/30 NL - Holdem - 9 players
Hand converted by PokerTracker 4:

UTG: 3,190.00
UTG+1: 2,990.00
UTG+2: 2,638.00
MP: 2,980.00
MP+1: 3,650.00
Hero (CO): 3,000.00
BTN: 2,780.00
SB: 2,910.00
BB: 2,440.00

SB posts SB 15.00, BB posts BB 30.00

Pre Flop: (pot: 45.00) Hero has Kh Kc

fold, fold, fold, fold, MP+1 raises to 120.00, Hero raises to 390.00, BTN calls 390.00, fold, fold, MP+1 calls 270.00

Flop: (1215.00, 3 players) Tc 5d 7s
MP+1 checks, Hero bets 600.00, fold, MP+1 calls 600.00

Turn: (2415.00, 2 players) Td
MP+1 checks, Hero bets 930.00, MP+1 calls 930.00

River: (4275.00, 2 players) 8s
MP+1 bets 960.00, Hero raises to 1,080.00 and is all-in, MP+1 calls 120.00

Hero shows Kh Kc (Two Pair, Kings and Tens) (Pre 85%, Flop 81%, Turn 91%)
MP+1 shows Jd 9c (Straight, Jack High) (Pre 15%, Flop 19%, Turn 9%)
MP+1 wins 6,435.00


Thursday, 19 April 2012

Oh, Gravity

p = mv ...didn't you know?

In this magical, pseudo-parabolic blog entry, I base my entire poker existence on this simple Physics formula. Put down your textbooks, and listen up. Momentum = Mass x Velocity. Let me rephrase. In baseball terms: How much force your swing has is based upon the weight of your bat and how fast you can swing it. This is common sense. However, as explained in my last post, my brain is wired a little differently than most. To me, this same concept applies to poker as well. (Of course it does...) How much damage you can do at the table, is solely based upon two variables: Your cards and your skill. That's the magic of poker. Theoretically speaking, any random player can take on the world's best, and leave a winner. What a lucrative, yet crazy concept. If I challenged LeBron James to a dunk-contest, I would be defeated before I had laced up my shoes. If I challenged Alex Rodriguez to a HR-Derby, his 'mv' spits in the face of mine. However, if I sat down with a player like Daniel Negreanu or Tom Dwan I'm only one bad-beat away from potentially defeating "The Best". One run of great cards, and I'm a legend-killer. While both poker pro's skill may be heaps above mine, if I catch the right cards at the right time, skill quickly takes a back-seat. However, in an attempt to keep this short, I digress...

Grinding the horrible, terrible depths of 5NL has been, for lack of a better word, humbling. Not in terms of skill, because believe me, if you want to grind a hard, but easy couple of dollars, 5NL is an ATM. What I've slowly realized over the last 3000 hands, is that patience is factor between a 500 hand winning session, and a 50 hand losing one. Hit a run of bad cards, and you've lost a full buy-in very quickly. This cost is really irrelevant in terms of money. $5. Five dollars. Fifty dimes. What it actually represents however, is 100bb, which could take a couple hours of grinding to make-up. As I write this, I lose an $11 hand, and mutter in disgust how horrible I've played tonight. (Murphy's Law?) As I figured I'd hit my miracle river, calling an all-in, it proved to be my downfall. (KQs < T8o, Tc8sTs 2d As) As my hero Arnold Snyder would say, "There's no way I could've known!"

I'd like to touch on a few influences in my poker game. There are four, and they all have distinct roles and labels: The Teacher, The Idol, The Peer, and The Protege. First and foremost, the powerhouse that created me, my tutor, and my best friend, TDO6H20G. ( I've learned basically everything I know in the poker world from him. Aside from really helping me out of a couple jams (on and definitely off the tables), I wouldn't be where I am today without him. (Atlantic City, buddy.) The Idol, the Assassinato (, is a recent find for me. While being one of the most dominating forces in the online poker world, his blog posts (which can be found here -> have really opened my eyes to the role poker actually plays in my life. My Peer, WTF_Anth0ny ( is my driving competition. Sure, he'll argue he's mainly a live player, but nevertheless he's a force to be reckoned with online as well. We share rail after rail, cheering each other on deep in tournaments. However, as my peer,  he's not afraid to tell me when I've made a mistake, and that's greatly appreciated. (Halifax, buddy.) Rounding out my top four, might be the most important to my current poker game. The Protege. JayWhit12 ( The idea of grinding the micro-limits was initiated by having a friend to work with along the way. He possesses clear thinking, great reading abilities (must've got it from his idol, Phil Hellmuth) and has a contagious passion for success. Where he lacks in making aggressive decisions (for now) he makes up for in making key folds at times a player like myself wouldn't. (Also, he recommended I watch "Rounders" which was a great decision) Overall, these four players have been more than helpful than anyone in my poker career. 

In closing, I'd like to set a few goals for myself over the next few days: 
- $90 profit by the end of the weekend.

- 2 hours of sweat sessions with my "Protege"
- Not play like a fucking donkey.
- Play > 4000 hands.
- Run no higher than 21/18

As promised, I won't always deliver a winning hand for "Hand of the Day". In this hand, I had a gut feeling my TPTK (top pair, top kicker) wasn't good.) Just want to say thanks again for reading. I received an ENORMOUS response from my last blog, which took me aback and really confirmed my belief in writing this blog. You all mean a lot to me. #rungood


PokerStars - $0.05 NL - Holdem - 8 players
Hand converted by PokerTracker 4:

MP+1: $5.00
CO: $6.65
Hero (BTN): $6.10
SB: $4.53
BB: $2.20
UTG: $2.36
UTG+1: $5.12
MP: $1.93

SB posts SB $0.02, BB posts BB $0.05

Pre Flop: (pot: $0.07) Hero has 8c Ac

fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, Hero raises to $0.15, SB calls $0.13, BB calls $0.10

Flop: ($0.45, 3 players) 6c 8d 7d
SB bets $0.25, BB calls $0.25, Hero raises to $0.82, SB raises to $4.38 and is all-in, BB calls $1.80 and is all-in, fold

Turn: ($5.37, 2 players) Ah

River: ($5.37, 2 players) 9h

SB shows 9s Ts (Straight, Ten High) (Pre 51%, Flop 68%, Turn 77%)
BB shows 7s 7c (Three of a Kind, Sevens) (Pre 49%, Flop 32%, Turn 23%)
SB wins $5.15


April 18th

Net Profit: $10.51
Hands: 1461 (Impressive...)
Sessions won: 8/17 (47.06%)
$/100 hands: 14.12 (Ice cold...)

Cumulative Report:

Days: 2
Net Profit: $32.56
Hands: 1947 
Sessions won: 16/24 (64%)
BB/100 hands: 33.44

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

A New Resurgence

Hi. I'm Jon Wrigley. Or JayKon17. Or JohnnyFranchize. I'm even DurrrJay to some people. It all depends how I know you, I suppose. I'm currently a Sales Associate at the Source, with a side-job playing poker at Pokerstars. I can do a rubik's cube, juggle, play and sing every John Mayer song with incredible accuracy, and finish medium level Sudoku's. I can probably beat you at rock-paper-scissors one time out of three, and I can't, for the life of me, can't put in contact lenses. This actually says NOTHING about who I am, but it's how normal people introduce themselves, I think. Name, where you might know me from, job title, quirky list of things, done. 


I've been flirting with the idea of writing a poker blog for about half a year or so. (For the record, this didn't end up becoming a poker blog, despite the title. Please, I assure you, if you're an able-minded human being looking for another perspective on life, read on.) I struggled with a lot of barriers to get around to finally writing this thing. I always worried I would never have a place to start, or inspiration, or important enough events to write about. I worried about my audience (or, more accurately, a lack thereof) and whether it'd be worth my time to lay my weary, semi-delusional thoughts on (virtual) paper. I worried my English and writing skills weren't up to par to be a prolific, or even horrific blog writer. Being me, I'm extremely self-critical while maintaining an extremely confident persona. Go figure. This probably explains the reason I spend countless hours playing guitar and singing and (currently) have zero videos on YouTube to speak of. I came around tonight on the idea, realizing all of the above, that I had the wrong motive to write all along. 

This blog isn't made for you. It's not for anyone. It's made by me, for me. I'd apologize, but I'm not one for being all sappy and shit. Let me explain.

What I've accomplished this year in the poker world, I feel deserves some self-reflection. (Both my highs and lows) This isn't because of a fair amount of good cashes, good/bad beats, and stupid decisions, but because of the levels I have learned to think on thanks to poker. The separation between poker thinking and life thinking, while in some aspects needs to be a thick, black line, cross over for me all of the time. (If you know me, I explain everything in life to be one of two things: +EV and -EV *expected value*) I take every decision, analyse and over-analyse it and ask myself, "How can I relate this decision, wrong or right, to bettering my own life?" This is, in my humble opinion, what I hope to bring into this blog. Ideas and lessons I've learned on and off of the poker table. Ideas that both directly and indirectly relate to my life. On my way home tonight, my best friend and I got into a great, insightful discussion about poker/life. He made an excellent point in relating the two: Poker is a lot like life. If you make the right decisions, you will always see success in the long-term. I'll be the first to admit my narrow-minded, ADHD-riddled, see success soon mentality has put me into some situations a man of patience would not have gotten himself in. I've made tons and tons and tons and tons and tons of sub-optimal decisions in life (and poker). However, if you know anything about me, it's that I'm not one to repeat mistakes. In the past, not unlike most of you, I've done some terrible things. Some of mine are on an embarrassing, unspeakable, unimaginable level. Something that I haven't believed for some time suddenly makes sense. I am, in fact, human after all. (#slightlydepressing)

I remember sitting in my first Grade nine high school class. I was that 'know-it-all' in public school, taking the so-called right track into academic level Physics. The teacher (who, even after two years of university, is the best teacher I have ever had) made one point extremely clear: To succeed in Physics, you have to think laterally. Inside-the-box, conventional thinking will never cut it. After one extensive after-class discussion with him, I vowed to make that my life goal. In order to succeed, (true success, I'll explain in a second) making a cookie-cutter, pre-meditated life for myself was out of the question. The "Go-to-school, get a job, find a girlfriend, get married, start a family, live in a large house, get promoted, get my kids through school, retire rich" system wasn't for me. (Currently in my second year of the first phase, whatchu know about hypocricy?) This is perfectly fine for the 99% of people out in the world, looking to meander their way through life. I've come to realize I could never do this to myself.

I want it all, and yet none of it at the same time. I pity the man who is a slave to his work clothes (says the poor poker-playing student, making money playing in his pyjamas.) I recently worked at Tim Horton's, and lasted about six months before realizing I couldn't stand the monotony of doing the same, repetitive task over and over. (says the poor poker-playing student, who clicks buttons for a living) I need variety. I need more for my ADHD-possessed brain to feast upon. I pity the man who is accountable to his family for his location and wrong-doings. (says the poor poker-playing student, who has been as anti-social as an old VHS tape) None of this is saying that's not an appropriate life to live, I just need more. I need variety. I need freedom.

Despite all of that ramble, I do want a decent balance of that 'made' life (or royal flush hand) and a risky, on the edge life. (AK-suited drawing hand) One in where I'm comfortable living at the place I am at, with a dash of potential to make it better. (In poker terms, I want AKc on a Kd8c4c flop) Someday, if when I win the Sunday Million, I would love to know in advance what my life's purpose becomes. How does a man with money in his pocket optimally LIVE life? Growing up, given the shitty situation life dealt me (not boo-hoo, I accepted the challenge of no financial support from my parents with open arms), I figured the ideal life is one where I sit in a floaty-chair in my crystal-clean pool, sipping mai-tai's, reading my name in the Forbes100 list outside my mansion, playing $50000NL on 4 tables, being silver spoon-feed by a half-dozen bikini clad women. Picture it, and tell yourself, "That's great. Give me that walk in the park!" Yes, I'd like to drive a Lamboughini Gallardo or Audi R8 around the block, but where does someone at that status in life GO on a personal, physical, and spiritual level? How do you get any satisfaction beating the Toronto Maple Leafs with the Philidelphia Flyers on Rookie difficulty? In that same light, how does the man who works minimum wage, 9-5, eats, sleeps, rinses, and repeats get anything more or less out of life? In a classic deathbed scenario, they are both leaving this earth the same way they came in, only one is wearing a significantly nicer pair of pants. ...I'm sorry for that rant, I'm still learning about life. Some call me nieve. 

In light of a recent downswing, mixed with a sudden resurgence of a "long road to success" mentality, and because I like formality and starting everything anew at once, I've decided I'm going to start all over. In life thinking, in making life goals, and in my poker career. I'm tethering myself to $5NL cash game. (2NL is unplayable. I can't explain from a disciplined point-of-view why I refuse to sink that low, but I have standards) I'm learning ideas and baking new conventional thinking from scratch. I have withdrawn all my Pokerstars bankroll, less $10. When I said 'starting from scratch' I literally meant it. I grind the shit out of these limits, and do so until my new Pokerstars bankroll can handle an increase. (or, the unlikely scenario, I bust!) For the sake of bragging rights, and so you guys can grow with me, I'm going to post my charts on a nightly basis. It's going to be a WILD ride, and at first it won't seem worth it, but I promise you it will be.

In conclusion, I will make it my goal to end this blog with a successful hand. (either in terms of winning or learning). If you don't understand poker, then I suppose you could use your Googling skills to figure it out. Enjoy, and if you read this entire blog, kudos to you. Thank you so much. I both appreciate it, and any future thoughts and feedback you may have on it! Cheers!

PokerStars - $0.05 NL - Holdem - 8 players

BTN: $1.47
Hero (SB): $5.00
BB: $12.50
UTG: $2.27
UTG+1: $4.81
MP: $5.50
MP+1: $5.75
CO: $7.94 (Calling station, limp-calls preflop, floats c-bet)

Hero posts SB $0.02, BB posts BB $0.05

Pre Flop: (pot: $0.07) Hero has Kh Js
fold, fold, fold, fold, CO calls $0.05, fold, Hero raises to $0.20, fold, CO calls $0.15

Flop: ($0.45, 2 players) 4h Qd 8h
Hero bets $0.29, CO calls $0.29

Turn: ($1.03, 2 players) Ad
Hero bets $0.87, CO calls $0.87

River: ($2.77, 2 players) Qc
Hero bets $3.64 and is all-in, fold

Hero wins $2.66


April 17
- Net profit: $22.05
- Hands: 464
- Sessions Won: 8/10 (80%)
- $/100 Hands: $4.75

- I threw a lot of time and effort into this blog, so I only 2-tabled for most of my session.

Saturday, 10 March 2012

The Start of a Revolution

Saturday, March 10, 2012, 2:00 PM

Hey, there! Welcome to the start of something truly great. We're talking guitars, we're talking food, we're talking beer, we're talking pizza. We're talking Madden and NHL 12, we're talking hockey, football, you name it. Guest bloggers, special people, we're going to soar. Now... where to begin.