Sunday, October 26, 2014

Zoom Hour Winnings Giveaway!

Hey everyone, so I had my Zoom hour yesterday as part of Team Pro Online week and it was a lot of fun. I was told to play my A game and ended up crushing pretty hard, to the tune of 251 bb/100 lol! It wasn't due to any sick play, however, as players were highly incentivize to pile a lot of money into the pot and cash in on the 7x multiplier that they would get for showing  a profit off of me. Despite what the graph may describe, a lot of people did end up winning some nice pots against me-including the top winner banking almost $70 in bonuses plus the pot.

Anyways, what I've decided to do is give back all of my winnings won during Zoom hour to all of my followers! I've set up a Home Game Poker Club and created a play money tournament for everyone to join. The ID and PW is:

ID: 1955150
PW: freedollars

It will be today at 18:00 EST. If you open the tournament lobby, you'll see the payouts written down in the notes. Since there's not a ton of cash to spread around, I'll just be paying the Final Table. I'll be accepting members up until 16:50 and don't panic if you aren't accepted right away, I'll be checking throughout the day.

I'm also coaching the Sunday Special today for PokerSchoolOnline at 16:00 EST today. I'll be doing a hand review of some of the biggest pots that I've played in can register for free here:

Alright, Looking forward to a fun day on and off of the tables!

gl at the tables!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Team Pro Online Week Twitter Contest-Road to the PCA!

Hey everyone! So I'm sure that by now you've heard about the twitter contests being held by all Team Pro Online members (we're also going by Team Pro Online now, instead of Team Online or Team Online Pro or whatever else you've been calling us ;) ) so I wanted to give you all the details about my contest, which will run from October 20th-24th.

First of all, for those of you that are still unaware, the prize for each twitter contest is one entry into a special 22-man tournament where the top 2 finishers will have a chance to take part in the Team Pro Online heads-up challenges on October 27,  and play for a a free PCA package. Even if you don't finish in the top 2 though, you're still guaranteed $50! Not bad if you're just starting out building a bankroll at the micros.

Now, to the details of my twitter contest. I'm keeping things very simple, as you only need to retweet the following tweet to be automatically entered into a draw that I will hold on October 25th! The winner will be chosen at random and announced via my twitter account, which can be found as @frosty012:
I figure that this will be a nice way to cause a buzz for the Team Pro Online week promotion and allow everyone an equal opportunity to win entry into the special satellite! Have fun during the week-take advantage of all of the cool promos being offered and be sure to check out the other contests being held by Team Pro Online members for more chances to win.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

How to Turn "Pro" Successfully

So you've decided that you want to give playing poker professionally a shot. Ok, now what? Before you stick it to the man and quit your day job there's a lot to consider...even though there's only so much you can control at the tables, you still need a solid plan in place to succeed. I want to offer my advice on how to make the transition from whatever you're currently doing to playing poker full-time. I'll draw upon my own experiences of how it all started and share how I've been able to make a living playing cards going on five years now...

1. Build up an adequate bankroll and do it by playing part-time. I know you are probably feeling hasty and eager to start playing poker full-time but building up a bankroll on the side of your regular job or studies can do a few great things to improve your success rate when turning pro. First and most importantly, you'll have some kind of idea about what to expect when you turn pro. You still won't know exactly how your results will turn out but you will have a fairly good idea of how you'll perform at the tables. You'll also gain the confidence to succeed knowing that you've been able to beat the limits that you want to play at a higher volume up to this point in time. Finally, it's fairly obvious but by starting out your career with an adequate bankroll (think 100 buy-ins for cash games), you're giving yourself a much better chance of surviving any negative variance that may come your way. Instead of just throwing a few thousand dollars online and not really knowing what you're getting yourself into, take the time to grow a bankroll after work or school and sharpen your skills along the way. Remember that there's no quick, easy way to be successful at poker in the long-term and it's going to take a lot of work so be patient.

I started playing cash games at the micro-stakes in the later years of my time at university and it really doesn't take that long to move up limits and be bankrolled for the games that you eventually want to play. I think that it only took a few months before I had moved up to 100nl, had my bankroll locked and loaded and was confident that I could beat the games with some consistency.

tyler_frost_portrait_psblog.jpg2. Plan for the worst case scenario. This has got to be my most important piece of advice because although you want to be full of enthusiasm and optimism, especially at the start of your career, you also need to be realistic and understand that no matter how skilled of player you are you're not bigger than the variance that comes along with the game in the short term. Even if you're adequately bankrolled for the limits that you want to play, you've never done this full-time before and you don't know how your results will be affected by numerous factors-including increased hours, tables, tilt, real life emergencies etc. You just want to have a backup plan in place and be honest enough with yourself that you consider the fact that failing is a possible outcome. I don't mean to scare anyone away or sound like I'm deterring them from turning pro...if anything planning for the worst case scenario had a tremendously positive affect on the start of my career. Once I had my backup plan in place, I was able to play with nothing holding me back! I didn't let the daily swings get to me as much and was really able to just go for it and if it didn't work out, well then it didn't work out and I'd be just fine.

To give you a clear example of what I'm talking about, for me, I had steadily built up a $10,000 bankroll while playing casually over my years at university and during the summer before my last semester at school I wanted to do a trial run of going pro. That bankroll was basically all of my money at the time, as my bank accounts usually got pretty dry by the end of the school year and I'd typically refill them over the summer by working a random summer job. Needing about $5,000 to cover my school expenses for my last semester, I decided that I'd give playing poker full time a shot but if my bankroll ever dropped to $5k I'd stop right there and quit, withdraw the money to use for school and re-evaluate poker at a later time.

3. Treat poker like a day job and set goals. Even though poker can offer you tremendous freedom and flexibility, you're not going to achieve financial success by playing a couple of hours a day (well, depending on your stakes I guess ;)). You probably need to plan on playing 4-8 hours a day at least to ensure that you're putting up consistent results. I would recommend setting VPP targets every month to keep you on track and take the emphasis off of results and back on things that you can control-the hours that you put in. Starting out with a year-long VPP target is a very good idea and that will let you know how many VPPs you're going to need to average monthly/daily/hourly etc. to hit the year-end number. Especially when you're just starting your career, having a bunch of smaller goals to supplement your year-long plan will be helpful to keep you on track and give you an idea of how much you should be playing.

When I started playing poker full-time, I was all-in and fully invested. I was playing tons of hours and hungry to succeed. Having an empty bank account will do that for you. My social life still existed but was largely scaled back...I was playing poker, thinking about poker and dreaming about poker at night. I was probably playing too much, as there's always a point where your play becomes much worse with increased volume but when you're that focused on succeeding it will bother you to not be playing. If I could go back and do it over again, I would just try to have more of an organized playing schedule in place but my hours would still be heavy.

Anyway, if you have the passion for the game and want to give turning "pro" a shot then hopefully you'll find my advice helpful and maybe I'll see you at the tables in the near future.
If you have any more questions, I'm always available on twitter (@frosty012), Facebook Tyler "frosty012" Frost), or right here on my blog.

gl at the tables!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

September Review-Slow Progress

September wasn't exactly the most exciting month at the poker tables. I didn't experience any big swings but unfortunately, I couldn't get much going in terms of catching a heater to get the ball rolling upwards. It felt a lot like last month, where I felt that I was running fairly poorly overall but still playing alright and making money due to winning enough "gifted" pots. I did manage to book a small profit from the WCOOP at least, after cashing in a $320 event early on in the series. All in all, I booked a small winning month but have a long way to go if I want to reach my $100K profit goal!

There are a couple of positive things working in my favour to reach my $100K goal, despite booking a relatively small profit of around $3k in September. First, I was reviewing my monthly totals for the year and actually miscalculated my annual earnings thus far by $5k lol. Fortunately, it was a "good" mistake as I've actually earned $5k more than originally thought. Second, October has the potential to be a booming month with the chance of 5-figures worth of bonuses depending on my volume! Hopefully things pan out a bit better at the tables and I might have a slim shot after all. I have to adjust my volume target though...I think that 500K VPPs was unrealistic from the start and now it's going to take a lot of effort to make 400K but that will be the goal. To be clear, I'm not changing my profit target and the volume goal was never important in terms of having to reach's just there to supplement THE goal of earning $100K.

So my ice hockey season is off to a completely opposite start to last year, where we pretty much lost every game by 5+ goals. Now we're in a lower division and are lighting it up! 6-0, 39 GOALS FOR and 6 AGAINST lol. It's been a fun ride but we're getting bumped up a div after the next game. You would think that moving up a division wouldn't be that bad since on paper it looks like we're an unstoppable force and it might not be...but I think that we look a lot better on paper then we actually are. Like the games have been weird-they'd be close for 1 or 2 periods, even tied and then the flood gates would just open up and we'd score 5 goals in the third. Also, one game was a forfeit and 2 wins came against the same team so yeah, we're definitely the best team in the division but I'm not so sure it's as clear cut as it seems. Regardless, we should at least be in a bunch of close games in the new division and hopefully win our fair share. I've personally been playing pretty was a rusty first couple of games but I've made an adjustment in my wrist shot and have since scored 8 goals in the last 3 games and I'm in the top 2 point leaders on the team. The change in my shot was just starting to get my top hand more involved in the shot by pulling backwards and really flexing the stick. The power increase has been pretty dramatic and it feels like I'm firing darts out there!

October's going to be a pretty jammed packed month. On top of all the poker that I intent to play I've got the usual weekly hockey/workout stuff and then I've got my birthday, a couple of Thanksgiving dinners to attend and of course, Halloween. It should be busy but it should be a lot of fun too! The progress bar is updated and here's to hoping it moves a lot farther to the right when October's all said and done...

gl at the tables!