High Stakes Poker Results, Variance and Swings, Superuser?

August 15, 2008

To try something a little different, and hopefully provide value to all you aspiring high stakes gamblers I decided to take a look at the high stakes poker results of the biggest games around to see if there were any trends we could learn something from.

First I took the results published by highstakesdb.com – which provides the top 50 and bottom 50 winners and losers for each month. The results are from 1/1/07 thru 7/31/08, including Omaha and Holdem on Ladbrokes/Prima/Fulltilt networks. High stakes horse is also included in the 7/08 monthly results.

I compiled all these monthly reports into a single spreadsheet workbook in Excel, and then combined the months to provide a data set of 19 months of the high stakes poker world. My initial theory was that the biggest high stakes players have the biggest swings but I wanted to visually see the difference between, if they are constantly playing the biggest games, or game selecting and ‘taking shots’…

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Poker vs. Stocks

May 27, 2008

While I spent most of the day getting the typical tournament teases – going deep to make minimal cashes and nothing going right during the late levels – I also caught up on some tv via Hulu.

For those who have not tried this site out yet I would highly recommend it.  The site is designed well, the actual media player is easy to use, the content is high quality and loads/streams fast.  So I was checking out some of the newer shows on the Mojo network, home to Antonio Esfandiari and Phil Laak’s “I bet you” among other things.  Shows I was watching:

Bobby G: The Adventure Capitalist – cool show about an ultra-rich, highly animated, venture capitalist.  He owns some moturary type business, the beverage company Clearly Canadian, along with some other investments.  I like his style, he’s calm, cool and collected and reminds me of a boss I once had.

Start-up Junkies – About a new seattle based startup called Earth Class Mail.  This company takes your regular snail mail and digitizes it for you.  Big potential globally.  Interesting to watch the fund raising stress as well as the growing pains of a small organization.

Wall Street Warriors – follows a bunch of different people around Wall St.  Watch some boy genius operate a hedge fund out of his apartment, follow some rookies as they learn what day trading is all about, tag along on the high brow exploits of some 28 y/o private equity fund manager as he helicopters between Manhattan and the Hamptons.  It’s interesting stuff.  But it brings me to the point of this whole blog.

Why is Wall St. more legitimate than Poker? It seems strange to me that if I had a job where I analyzed numbers/charts/financial data/industry news and made ‘educated guesses’ as to the next move that would be held in higher regard than a virtually identical situation using cards and chips.  In the stock market, when one guy wins, another guy is losing.  Going against the common grain of knowledge/behavior is highly risky but potentially incredibly lucrative.  There is greed.  People go on ’tilt’ and start gambling as they chase losses.  The symmetry between the two industries is remarkable.  Morgan Stanley and all the other big firms are essentially the online poker rooms, collecting the rake.

I guess sometimes things in life can seem a little hypocritical.

Cole (CTS) South – $550k in play

May 21, 2008

Cole South, instructor over at Cardrunners – currently has over $500k in play on FullTilt across a few tables’.

Now can someone say Bankroll Management?  Generally, playing high variance games like HU and PLO you’d want 30buyin ish range, so he’s looking at needing in the neighborhood of $16mil liquid….I know this kid is a baller and has done quite well…but lets say he’s made – oh I dunno $4mil online to date (which has to be on the high side in my rather uneducated opinion).  He’s still using a stupid high % of his bankroll.  

Gambooooool it up Cole.  We love you just like TC.