Friday, October 15, 2010

Poker at the Speed of Whoa

Poker at the Speed of WhoaBeen helping out covering the Sunday Million tourneys for the PokerStars blog this month. Have seen some interesting things at those final tables so far.

For instance, last week the tourney happened to have taken place on 10/10/10. The biggest hand at the final table involved the winner -- SHIPP ITT -- going all in with pocket tens, flopping a set, and winning almost all of the chips in play. Three tens on 10/10/10! It would take one more hand to give SHIPP ITT the victory, but that proved the decisive hand. (Here’s the write-up of that event, if you’re curious.)

Another interesting facet of that final table story was the fact that SHIPP ITT began that final table ninth out of nine in chips. (SHIPP ITT’s real name is Mark Herm, I believe, to evoke a topic I wrote about earlier this week.) I’ve seen him go deep in other tourneys, though, and so wasn’t too surprised to watch him battle his way back into contention and then ultimately to victory.

Incidentally, there was one other hand along the way -- a big three-way all-in -- that SHIPP ITT won at that final table to survive. He had pocket tens in that one, too!

PokerStars Sunday MillionThe PokerStars Sunday Million remains the biggest online tourney of the week. It just about always meets its $1.5 million guarantee, usually attracting more than 7,000 players every Sunday.

I hadn’t really paid attention to the Sunday Million for the last few months, but watching it these last few weeks I’ve noticed the structure is really quite speedy.

They start with 10,000 chips, but with 15-minute levels it usually only takes a little over two hours to lose half the field. Most weeks they get through the entire sucker in 10 or 11 hours, and by the time they reach the final table the stacks are often quite shallow relative to the blinds. It’s not a total crapshoot at the end, but it’s true that just about every big hand involves all the decisions being made before the flop.

Of course, I say the structure feels fast to me, but to a lot of these full-time MTT and SNG grinders it probably doesn’t seem that way. The pace of online poker is -- for the most part -- breathtaking. It has always fast been compared to live poker, of course. But even compared to just a couple of years ago, it seems most players desire an even more rapid, more action-filled game.

And that is precisely what the sites keep giving them. I mean, Rush Poker on mobile devices? Whoa.

Good luck to all playing in the Sunday Million this week. And for everyone, be sure to find some time to relax some this weekend.

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Blogger Unknown said...

Rush poker while!

10/15/2010 4:43 PM  

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