Mean Gene
Mean Gene
Pittsburgh's most decorated poker blogger, which I admit is like being the best shortstop in Greenland

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My Articles

Presto, the Arlo, & the Hammer
An Online Code of Conduct
The Ethics of Ratholing
"The Professor, the Banker..."
"Ace on the River"

My Columns

Lose the Shades
If You Can't Say Something Nice
Whither the Kicker
The Lady is a Champ?
Covering the WSOP (or not)
Statistics, Luck, and Poker
Poker and New Orleans
Managing a Bankroll
How To Tell A Bad Beat Story
Telling Lies
The Power of Poker Tracker
Advanced Card-Handling

My Greatest Hits

5 Things To Do Before I Die
Cafeteria Nostalgia
Mean Gene's Dubious Dating Tips
Poker and Business?
There's No Such Thing As Luck?
Isabelle, Je t'adore
No Shirt No Shoes No Service
Well, The Food Was Good
Good Morning, Mr. Matusow!
The Weekend of our Discontent, I
The Weekend of our Discontent, II
Books That Left Their Mark
Ode to a Fish Sandwich
Bill Simmons Ain't the Poker Guy
The Sports Guy Still Ain't the Poker Guy
Again, The Media Tackles Poker
Five Years After 9/11
Hitting Pretty Girls in the Face
Sixth-Graders Suck

Fellow Poker Bloggers

Guinness and Poker
Cards Speak
Tao of Poker
Up for Poker
Boy Genius
Chris Halverson
Poker Grub
The Fat Guy
Todd Commish
Poker Works
Bill Rini
Bad Blood
Love and Casino War
Double As
Lion Tales
Paul Phillips
Daniel Negreanu
Poker Nerd
Poker Nation
Poker in Arrears
Human Head
Sound of a Suckout
Chicks With Chips
TP's Table Talk
Royal Poker
This is Not A Poker Blog
Chick and a Chair
Go Be Rude
Poker Cheapskate
Poker & Other Stuff
Seven Two
Musical Poker
WPBT Online
Isabelle Mercier
Cardschat Blog
Amy Calistri
BJ Nemeth
Annie's Blog

Poker Sites

Cardschat Poker Forum
Barstool Sports
Card Player
Internet Texas Hold-Em
Poker Pages


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    Thursday, October 13, 2005

    Actual Poker Content!

    What the hell, another quicky post. As I was trying not to nod off last night I flipped on the Poker Superstars II. Um, how long has this tournament been going on? And when is it going to end? DOES it end? I mean, I can easily imagine Johnny Chan and Kathy Liebert and Ted Forrest playing push-and-pray Hold-Em for eternity in the poker Purgatory that is this show. It just goes on and on and on and on and on, with no end in sight.

    This round has a bizarre setup. Four players play two elimination matches, and the top two point-getters advance. Thing is, the person who gets knocked out first in the initial game not only has to win the next one, he/she has to win in a specific order to advance. Now, I didn't watch the whole show last night, but I saw that Huck Seed got knocked out first. If it played out that Seed has to knock out Mike Sexton first, then David Sklansky, and then Johnny Chan to move on to the next round, then Sexton, who was sitting on Seed's immediate right, can raise all-in every single time if Chan and Sklansky fold. Every time Seed is in the big blind he has to hope there's a raise ahead of Sexton, otherwise he HAS to give up the hand. And Chan and Sklansky know that as well as Sexton. So you have a bizarre dynamic at work here, where not only are these world-class folks desperately short of chips to play with, the players who are low on points are prevented from playing against certain opponents. This is poker?

    I've only seen one episode of the Full Tilt Poker shows on Fox, where they have the FTP folks discussing different aspects of the game. They're definitely worth watching, but they're on at 4:30 on Sundays, when I'm usually watching football, and tracking them down during the week can be a bit tricky. A few observations:

    I'm sure I'm not alone in wishing Howard Lederer would give up playing poker and just be a commentator. Because he's really, really good. Actually, he's so good I'd like to see him do the NFL, the NBA...isn't ABC looking for an anchor to replace the late Peter Jennings?

    Isn't Phil Hellmuth affiliated with Ultimatebet? Just thought it odd that he's doing stuff for Full Tilt. Likewise Daniel Negreanu. A point for discussion--now that Full Tilt has this stable of famous pros, and Poker Stars has Raymer and Moneymaker (and Isabelle, Isabelle, Isabelle), does this point out a major weakness in Party Poker's marketing plan? I mean, if you're watching the WSOP, and you see a guy at the table wearing a Party Poker hat, what's the first thing you think? That's right--HEE HAW!! HEE HAW!! Maybe this guy is the best online tournament player in the Free World, but his reputation is tarred by playing at a site know to be the biggest acquarium in the world. Especially with Party cutting ties with its skins, will more online players gravitate to Full Tilt and Stars because they want the cache that goes with playing at a "pro" site? Could this be the tipping point that swells the player lists at those two sites to the point that they become as fishy--but more "respected"--than Party? Just a thought.

    What I'm about to say, I say with all seriousness--I never, EVER, want to see Chris Ferguson slicing stuff with playing cards. OK, last year during the WSOP I thought it was cool when Jesus hacked up bananas with cards. Then it was carrots. Then pickles. Then he was trying to throw them past a hockey goalie. Um, you know, I get the point. We can move on now.

    But no. We've already seen Scotty Nguyen beat Jesus in a banana-striking contest during the WSOP, and then watching the Full Tilt show they had yet another thing showing Ferguson taking on carrots and pickels with cards. They even had super-slo-mo photography to show, like, the carrots and pickles getting sliced. At one point Ferguson said something like, "When slicing vegetables you have to use a different technique than when you're slicing fruit", and at that point I put my head in my hands. Please, please, no more. Have Chris show us some swing-dancing moves. Have him blast out some game theory equasions. But leave the produce alone from now on. Please.

    Pauly and Otis were at a PokerStars media bash last night (read their blogs for the reports, which will make you green with envy and/or nausea) and there was a Q&A with the Poker Stars players, including the person who won the 2005 World Series. Now, I'm not going to mention this person's name, because I know there are people who read my blog who DO NOT want to know who won before they see it on TV. Which leads me to a question I would've asked (or liked to have seen asked): The champ is famous now, but nowhere near as famous as he/she is GOING to be when the shows finally air. Is it a bit odd to know that there's this even bigger wave of fame and attention coming your way, after you've had a pretty nice taste of it already? I'd be interested to know how Raymer and Moneymaker felt about it as well--the Cult of Celebrity usually initiates you in one big orgy of adulation, and you don't always see it coming.

    OK, back to work. I think there are about 1200 folks signed up for Poker Stars' Blogger Tournament. Wow, does my blogroll need updated. get this widget Please visit Pokernews site for more poker news, poker strategy articles or poker rules.

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