Free WSOP with Bodog Poker

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Bodog Poker wants to give new depositing players a chance to play in the World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event for free. All new depositors for April will receive entry into four special freerolls that will award ten tickets to $37 WSOP satellite tournaments. Even if you have had the software, but have yet to deposit, you can qualify for this promotion. The freeroll tournaments will run on April 16,23,30 and May 7 2011. New depositors could be well on their way to a WSOP Main Event seat for free!

If an April new depositor buys into at least $100 worth of WSOP qualifiers will qualify for a June 26, 2011 freeroll that will award threeBodog Swag Bags that Bodog WSOP players receive in Vegas. Additionally, if you buy into $500 worth of Bodog WSOP qualifiers (still April first time depositors), you will receive a ticket to a freeroll on June 25, 2011 that will award a Las Vegas trip. The trip looks like it will be totally set up and bought by Bodog with no cash value.

This is a good deal for players who may have been considering an initial Bodog Poker deposit.

Bodog Poker Kicks Off WSOP Qualifying

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Bodog Poker Kicks Off WSOP Qualifying  

Win your chance to play for the biggest prize in the world
The world’s largest betting brand, Bodog, has kicked off its series of 2011 World Series of Poker qualifying tournaments. Texas Hold’Em poker players are invited to enter multiple tournaments with the potential of securing a seat to the main WSOP event beginning July 7 in Las Vegas.

For as little as $1, players can enter Bodog poker qualifying tournaments to be in with a chance of heading to Las Vegas, playing poker in the $9,000,000 Main Event and, of course, attending the legendary Bodog parties.

“ Bodog has a long history of sending player to the WSOP and we would love another of our players to take a bracelet in 2011,” says Bodog Poker Manager Nicholas Sims. “Most poker players dream of ending up in Vegas partying, with a WSOP bracelet, not to mention the millions of dollars that can be won at WSOP.”

If you’re thinking it can’t be you, think again. Every Bodog poker player participating in a qualifying tournament has a 1 in 25 chance of winning a WSOP seat. But that’s not all, all players also benefit from Bodog’s personalized, comfortable poker playing experience.

All poker players are invited to visit Bodog Poker to enter all WSOP qualifying tournaments.

Pokerstars Game of Your Life Freerolls

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PokerstarsThe Pokerstars Game of Your Life freerolls give you the chance to win your share of thousands of dollars in cash, plus the trip of a lifetime to any major sporting event in the world. You can bring your friends along too, with everything taken care of by us. Here’s what you can win:

* Front-row seats to the sporting event (or events) of your choice, anywhere in the world
* Invite as many friends as you want
* Travel and accommodation included
* Total prize package value of $100,000
* $1,000,000 in additional cash prizes awarded in freerolls running every week

Simply play any of the free daily qualifiers and advance to one of the six Freeroll Finals. The first five finals each have a prize pool of $100,000 in cash. The Grand Final in week six is where you can win the Game of Your Life prize package for you and your friends!

Lock Poker Battle of the Ronin

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Lock Poker Battle of the Ronin is a rake chase with some great cash prizes.  The Battle of the Ronin has limited prizes for each level attained.   For instance, the easiest to attain level is 100 points, but only the first 200 players to reach the 100 points get paid.  Naturally the levels increase from there as the number paid at each level decreases.  If you manage to complete all levels for the month of April you would earn $45,000 as long as each prize level is still available.  Additionally the Ronin with the most VIP points for the month of April will receive a 2011 WSOP Main Event seat, worth over $10,000.  The Ronin theme comes from ancient Japan’s warrior castes.

Battle of the Ronin Prize Levels

Points Prize Total Points Total Prizes Prizes Awarded
100 $1.50 100 $1.50 200
200 $3.00 300 $4.50 100
300 $5.00 600 $9.50 80
400 $10.00 1000 $19.50 70
500 $12.50 1500 $32 60
600 $15.00 2100 $47 50
700 $17.50 2800 $64.50 45
800 $20.00 3600 $84.50 40
900 $22.50 4500 $107 35
1000 $50.00 5500 $157 30
1500 $60.00 7000 $217 50
2000 $80.00 9000 $297 50
2500 $100.00 11500 $397 50
3000 $120.00 14500 $517 50
4000 $200.00 18500 $717 50
5000 $225.00 23500 $942 50
6000 $300.00 29500 $1,242 50
7000 $350.00 36500 $1,592 50
8000 $400.00 44500 $1,992 50
9000 $450.00 53500 $2,442 50
10000 $500.00 63500 $2,942 50
12500 $800.00 76000 $3,742 50
15000 $950.00 91000 $4,692 50
20000 $1,250.00 111000 $5,942 50
25000 $1,750.00 136000 $7,692 35
30000 $2,000.00 166000 $9,692 15
35000 $2,250.00 201000 $11,942 10
40000 $2,500.00 241000 $14,442 6
45000 $2,750.00 286000 $17,192 4
50000 $3,000.00 336000 $20,192 3
55000 $3,250.00 391000 $23,442 3
60000 $3,500.00 451000 $26,942 3
65000 $4,700.00 516000 $31,642 2
70000 $6,000.00 586000 $37,642 2
80000 $7,500.00 666000 $45,142 2

Battle of the Ronin Terms & Conditions

  • The ‘Battle of the Ronin’ promotion will run from Friday 1 until Saturday 31 April (inclusive), 2011. On Sunday 1 May at 00:00 Server Time the Battle of the Ronin VIP points counter will cease recording VIP Points and any earned after this time will NOT count towards prize requirements.
  • All Battle of the Ronin cash prizes will be paid in full directly to a player’s poker account, without any further play through requirements. Any cash prizes will be available for withdrawal after 7 days of being issued to your account, but can be played with at the tables immediately.
  • A player can win ALL 35 cash prizes during the promotion period, but must meet each level’s individual prize requirements.
  • Please allow up to 30 minutes from when an individual prize level is completed, until payment is received.
  • Any form of cheating or collusion will not be tolerated.
  • The maximum number of cash prizes to be awarded at each level are limited and will only be awarded to the fastest eligible players to reach each level. In the case of multiple players reaching the same level and prize limits being exceeded, then the prize will be awarded to the fastest player to obtain that level (within the prize limits).
  • Lock Poker reserves the right to alter, modify or terminate the Promotion and/or these Terms at any time, without giving you any prior notice (written or verbal) where it is reasonable to do so or for reasons beyond the Promoter’s control. The Promoter does not accept any responsibility or liability for any late or undelivered entries or registrations, notifications or communications or for any form of technical failure, error, malfunction or difficultly or for any other event beyond its reasonable control that may cause the operation of the Promotion to be disrupted, unavailable or incorrect.
  • In order to be eligible a player must setup a real money account, which includes their full contact details, so that we can pay any winnings to their account should the win.
  • Offer only open to players that are of the legal age of majority as determined by the laws of the country where you live. Employees and immediate family members of employees of Lock Poker, its associated companies, affiliates, advertising and promotional agencies are not eligible to take part in the Promotion. Entry to the Promotion is limited to those people who are resident in countries where their registration and use of the Cardroom is permitted by the law of their country.
  • The company reserves the right to ask for proof of age from any customer and customer accounts may be suspended until satisfactory proof of age is provided.
  • By downloading the software and registering an account, a customer is deemed to have fully accepted and understood all rules, terms and conditions published by this website.
  • All players must meet Lock Poker’s Terms & Conditions, and Lock Poker reserves the right to modify these rules at any time, and for any reason, at its sole discretion.

Full Tilt Poker Take 2

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Full Tilt Poker introduces Take 2. This painless promotion requires you to only opt into it. Take 2 is a cash ring game promotion. There are two parts to the promo. One side of the coin gives you double Full Tilt Points for playing either two standard ring games at the same time, or one Rush Poker game any time from April 08-April 17, 2011. The second part awards cash for playing multiple days. The qualifying is still the same, two standard rings or one Rush game, but the number of days played determines your cash. Play 5 of the 10 days and get $5 cash. If you play 9 of the 10 days you will receive an additional $20 cash for a $25 total. There is a certain number of points to get the double points and the “day” recorded.

How to Participate in Take 2
Follow these steps to participate in Take 2 and claim your cash and bonus points:

If you haven’t done so already, download Full Tilt Poker and set up an account.

Log in to Full Tilt Poker and click on the red Cashier button in the game lobby.

Click on the My Promotions box and then the Take 2 link.

This will lead you to your personal Take 2 page. Follow the instructions on this page – you must elect to participate in this promotion or you will not receive cash or double points for your play during Take 2

The Full Story from the proverbial Horses Mouth:
Take 2 at Full Tilt Poker to earn up to $25 AND double the Full Tilt Points that you’d normally receive for playing in your favorite ring games.

Running from Friday, April 8th to Sunday, April 17th, play at least two standard ring-game tables at the same time or any Rush Poker* table during Take 2 to receive double the Full Tilt Points. Play as often as you can during Take 2 and we’ll also reward you with up to $25 in cash, depending on how many days you play.

Earn up to $25 in Cash
The more you play during Take 2, the more you’ll earn. Earn at least five Take 2 bonus points on any five days during Take 2 to get $5 in cash. Do so on nine of the ten days to get an additional $20, for a total of $25:

Level 1: Play on any five days during Take 2 and receive $5
Level 2: Play on nine of the ten days during Take 2 and receive an additional $20, for a cumulative total of $25
Earn Double the Full Tilt Points

There are two ways to earn double the Full Tilt Points during Take 2:

Play TWO standard ring-game tables at the same time and receive double points at BOTH tables. For example, if you earn 60 points while playing on one table and 40 points while playing on the other, you’d normally receive 100 Full Tilt Points for your play. During Take 2, you’ll earn a total of 200 points – 100 points for your play and an additional 100 bonus points.
Play any table of Rush Poker* – the world’s fastest poker game – and receive double the points. For example, if you earn 100 points while playing at a Rush Poker* table during Take 2, you’ll get an additional 100 bonus points for a total of 200 Full Tilt Points. Rush Poker* is the fastest way to earn double points during Take 2.
You can use your bonus points to get some great gear from the Full Tilt Poker Store, including plasma TVs, iPods, custom Full Tilt Poker jerseys and more. You can also use your points to enter special Full Tilt Points Sit & Gos and Multi-Table Tournaments.

Six handed limit hold’em tips

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Loose aggressive players can be difficult to combat in any form of poker and these types of players present some very difficult obstacles for novice and even intermediate players to combat. If you are using PokerTracker then you will find these players with very high VPIP’s and PFR percentages relative to the game and the number of players. Let us look at how a LAG may play a certain hand over a solid regular. It has been folded around to the solid regular who opens with K-J and he gets three bet by the LAG who has 10-9s.

The flop comes 5-5-2 and the original raiser tries to wrestle the initiative by donk betting the flop. But the LAG places maximum pressure on his opponent by raising in situations where most other players would fold. This is high variance play and does not suit many people but if there is one thing that true LAG’s are not afraid of and it is greater swings. But if you do encounter these types of players then they can present you with some very formidable problems.

There are numerous types of LAG’s and a LAG could be highly skilled or someone who is a temporary LAG and simply blowing some money off. If someone who is playing $1-$2 limit with $50 and is looking to blow their money off then they may do so and take you with them. If you are multi-tabling then you really need to be careful with LAG’s because they have a tendency to affect your mental equilibrium and when that happens on several tables at once then you may have something of a problem.

At the end of the day then if you do not feel comfortable playing poker in a certain way then this is your subconscious mind telling you that you are either out of your depth or you do not have the experience level of several of your opponents. Far too many players stay in games when they are either being run over or outplayed. This could be because of variance or because you are simply out gunned by your opponent or opponents. The lesson here is clear in that you should never be afraid to leave a game if you do not feel comfortable.

Most players only have accounts at one site and many stay in bad games simply because there are no other games running. However if you have accounts at numerous sites or different networks then you have options to go and play in other games. If you feel uncomfortable in any game of poker then you have that feeling for a reason. If your game feels wrong then get out and do so quickly. Do not think that you should be fighting “fire with fire” or anything like that if doing so drags you away from the style of poker that you want to play.

Betting Basics for Fixed Limit Texas Holdem

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Fixed limit games are the more basic of the two betting structures, and they always follow the same strict betting procedure. The player can only bet in specific increments, no matter what the situation is. For example, in a $2/$4 Texas Hold’em game, one can only bet and raise in the specified increments. During the first two rounds of betting one must bet or raise $2. During the final two betting rounds the limit doubles, the player must bet $4.

Whether one is playing online, or in a casino, there will be a little white dealer ‘button’ being passed clockwise around the table. Whichever player has this button in front of him, will be the last player to act on every betting round. Acting last is a huge advantage in most poker games. It is especially valuable in Texas Hold’em. When a player gets to see what other players have done before they are required to act, it lets them make more knowledgeable decisions. Since the button is passed around clockwise, each player receives the privilege to act last once each round.

At the beginning of each hand, the two players to the left of the button are required to put forced bets into the pot known as the small and big blind. The player to the left of the button puts in half of a small bet, whereas the player two to the left on the button matches the small bet at whatever particular limit is being played. Limit games almost always follow the exact same blind structure, regardless of what the betting limits are. For example, and a $20/$40 game, the small blind will be $10, and the big blind will be $20. In no limit, the blinds are decided upon ahead of time, and usually are related to the maximum or minimum buy-in allowed at that table. These blinds ensure that there will be action in every pot, since there is always money out there, waiting to be taken.

Once the blinds are placed and the cards are dealt, the player starting to the left of the big blind has the opportunity to call, raise or fold. The action then continues to the next player to the left, and so on. Once it gets all the way around to the small blind, the small blind can complete the bet or fold (remember, they only put in half of a small bet before the cards were dealt). Folding would forfeit his small blind. The big blind then has one last chance to raise before the flop is dealt. Once the flop is dealt, betting continues clockwise as before, but this time the small blind is the first to act. The turn and river are treated in the same way as the flop. Once the hand ends, the dealer button is moved to the left and the small and big blinds are placed before the next round is dealt (this will all be done automatically for you online of course).

All these rules may seem complicated now, but remember, most poker games follow the exact same procedure from hand to hand, so once the basics are down, it all becomes second nature.

Preparing for the Poker Tournament

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In today’s Texas Holdem poker world, tournaments can be found in just about every country. You can play large tournaments or small buy-in tournaments just the same. The prize money has even increased as poker rooms chip in to raise the size of the prize pool to lure in new players. But how much do you really know about tournament poker? Are you really ready to play or just excited because it’s popular? Since Moneymaker won it all in 2003 the game has become wildly popular and it seems like everyone is playing some form of poker these days. Just because everyone is playing the game doesn’t mean they are all good players. That is where you can take advantage by being prepared to play the game.

Know the Structure

The first thing you need to do before you pull out a wad of your hard earned cash is know exactly what the structure is for the tournament you intend to play. This means everything to you because it will somewhat dictate your approach to the game and how much risk you need to take in order to be successful. Basically there are two types of tournaments. There are fast tournaments where the blinds increase rapidly and the time between levels is below thirty minutes and there are slow tournaments that are just the opposite. The blinds increase slowly and the levels are anywhere from 30 minutes up to 2 hours. Usually slower paced tournaments will attract a higher caliber of poker player and also cost more to buy into.

Be Honest about your Game

Being honest about how well you play the game of poker sounds relatively straight forward. But we all have seen the guy that talks the most being the first one to bust out of the tournament. You really need to ask yourself a few questions before you plunk down your buy in. Those questions should include:

  • What is the skill level of my competition?
  • Can I realistically compete in this format and structure?
  • Can I afford to buy into this tournament without hurting my bankroll?

If the answer to all three of those questions is yes then by all means pull up a seat and start building your stack. Too many players overestimate their ability to compete in tournaments. This is particularly true in slow structures where skill is much more of a factor. Many online players are used to playing fast paced sit n go’s and have been very successful. However, when you are sitting with $10,000 in chips and the blinds are $50/$50 with one hour levels you need to be capable of playing small pot poker. That is not the typical environment for most online players and some have difficulty playing in space.

Profile ProfileProfile!

I cannot emphasize this point enough. In order to win a poker tournament, particularly a live tournament, you have got to be capable of profiling players and being very accurate in your assessment of their play. This may sound easy but you would be surprised at how many poker players do not put the time in studying their opponents the way they should. When you sit down at the table and are not involved in a hand there are plenty of things to do to keep the game entertaining and your mind occupied. Profiling is your primary activity. You need to be involved in every single hand from a mental aspect. Paying attention at show down, watching betting patters and listening to your opponents banter are just a few of these activities.

If you are going to buy into a tournament and really make it worth your while it only makes sense to be prepared when the times comes for the cards to hit the felt. You will be glad you did.

Short stacking in no-limit hold’em

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Playing a short stack is something that has become more and more in vogue in no-limit Texas Hold’em in recent years. The expert short stack player usually buys in for 20% of the table maximum and then looks to shove all in either pre-flop or on the flop with a good hand. It is a good strategy to adopt if you are an inexperienced player as there are many advantages to it. Firstly you are only buying in for 20% of the maximum which would be $20 in a NL100 game.

This means that your deep staked opponents would not have the ability to outplay you down the streets. So you are essentially totally offsetting their skill advantage over you. Usually skilled short stack players are not big winners in the game although the ease of the strategy means that you can play an awful lot of tables this way and you can never make a huge mistake. Also it does not take any skill to play a short stack as you are basically sitting and waiting for strong hands and simply pushing them for the maximum that you have in your stack.

Let us look at how this works in practice. You have A-Qs and it has been folded around to the button that opens for $3.50 in a NL100 game. The small blind folds and you have $17 after going through the blinds twice. There is $5 in the pot and you shove all in for your remaining $17. If you win the pot then your stack rises to $22 which is more than the $20 that you started with. This gives you some more time to go looking for that double up that you are searching for.

But here is where short stacking can really pay off because you are often facing deep stacks. The opener may have a huge stack of say $150 and so calling the extra $12 is not going to faze him. There is $22 in the pot and it only costs him $12 to call and they will often call with dominated hands like A-J and A-10 etc. So you often get loose calls when players look you up. But here is the real kicker because you could be sitting on a table full of professionals and world class players and they could never outplay you.

Many people are very critical of players who short stack and it is certainly true that they are indeed a hindrance. But they do provide a tremendous amount of liquidity to the game as players are short stacking for one simple reason, because they want to. So by making these players buy in for more money or driving them from the game then you run the risk of driving these players away from poker for good. If I have short stackers to my left then I will be careful with regards to how much I raise as if they come over the top with a raise then I know that they have a tiny range of hands. Likewise if a short stacker limps in, if they are a skilled short stack player then I will automatically suspect a limp re-raise here.

Taking the aggressive route in no-limit Texas Hold’em

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These days in no-limit Texas Hold’ em then if you have to choose between a passive route and an aggressive one then the aggressive route is usually best. Let us look at an example here to show what I mean. It has been limped by an early position player and it has then been folded around to you on the button with 5-5 and now you have to decide what to do. Do you limp or do you fold because of the poor implied odds? Well if you want to play the hand then with only one opponent in the pot why not take the aggressive route and raise?

This strives to take the initiative in the hand and often when you limp then a player behind you may try and take the initiative by raising and so your play is punished to a certain extent and so are your implied odds. I like raising over limping if I do decide to play the hand. Aggression is always rewarded in poker even though it may not be always rewarded in each individual hand that you play. Let us look at another situation and here we are playing in a six handed game.

It has been folded around to the hijack who open raises in a NL200 game and you have A-J on the button. Folding is definitely wrong and in stronger games then calling the raise can often be punished by a re-raise from one of the blinds. If you re-raise and that raise gets called by the original raiser then you know that they are not messing about as not only have they raised but they have also called the re-raise. Players with aces and kings will often just call the re-raise looking to trap over zealous aggressive players who are abusing their position.

So an opening raise followed by the calling of a re-raise is a powerful betting line and especially if the hand is heads up! Raising with the A-J also allows you to clarify where you stand in relation to other hands that are on the table. You ideally want to know if you are against AK or AQ. If you merely call the raise and the flop comes A-9-5 rainbow and you are out kicked against someone who has A-Q then you are going to lose a lot of chips here. You will expect your opponent to fire a c-bet regardless and so you cannot fold on the flop.

Likewise on the turn because most players will fire a second barrel on the turn if their flop bet gets called on a bluff. So this leaves the A-J hand in a difficult money losing situation. You cannot fold on the flop as that is too weak and probably would be too weak on the turn as well. So taking the aggressive route can often save you a lot of money in no-limit Texas hold’em by forcing other players to fold and also helping you to find out exactly where you are.