Monday, December 12, 2011

Announcements from Friends on the Felt


     Several weeks ago I had the opportunity to meet and play with some really nice people from within the world wide poker community. Some were there to compete, some were there to entertain and some were there to entertain the thought of competing while working!
thumb    One of the first gentlemen I had the privilege to meet was Mark Hoke from Short Stacked Radio. Mark was setting up camp in the main hall in order to broadcast live throughout the weekend of events. Fortunately, I was seated at a table next to his set-up and was able to listen in on all the broadcasting throughout the weekend. I had tuned in to several broadcasts of the show before but never had a face to go with the voice.. now i do! Mark is pictured above (on the right) with Cris Belkewitch (Bustout Poker Pro). 
   Anyway, Short Stacked Radio has taken the poker world by storm since it's debut July 5th, 2011. The show features guests from all walks of life within the poker community. You will hear weekly  from top representatives of the Poker Players Alliance and, and just recently Phil Helmuth joined the show to discuss his upcoming charity event scheduled. There have been many, many noteable names that have joined in on the broadcast. If you would like to know more about Mark, the show and their past and future guests follw this link . And if you would like to join Mark and his guests during the broadcast of a show just follow this link via Ustream .
    Now let's get to the big announcement, one of many that have already been made and certainly just a few of many more to come! Here is a post from Mark that will fill you in on the latest big announcement...
ShortStackedRadio "Very excited to have been personally selected and authorized by the Epic Poker League to cover the EPL Main Event #3 at the Palms next week! It's a great honor for Short Stacked Radio and we hope you'll all be a part of it. We'll be right on the floor at the players lounge with poker's elite of the game, EPL executives plus some of the great friends we've made along the way! Broadcasts will start on Wednesday, Dec 14th at approximately Noon PST and we'll be there all week until the end of the event on Sunday. Tune in at all week long!"

    Please follow us on our Short Stacked Radio Facebook page, Twitter @shortstackradio and my personal twitter - @HokesHouse.

    Another gentleman I had the privilege to meet was Chris Torina (CEO and President) from Deep Stacks Live. Chris is pictured at the left (on the right) with Mark Hoke.

Mike Matusow

Michael Mizrachi

 DeepStacks Live is poker's premier live training organization that promotes & conducts quality educational courses throughout the world. Their training programs are dedicated to the success of you, the poker player. DeepStacks Live Team is represented by quite a few well known poker players.... Mike "theMouth" Matusow... Michael "theGrinder"Mizrachi... Tristan "Cre8ive" Wade... Justin "Boosted J" Smith... Jason Lee... and Jennifer "Jennicide" Leigh just to name a few!
 DeepStacks Live's announcement....
DeepStacks Poker Tour

A new poker tour is set to hit North America in 2012. DeepStacks announced  it will launch the DeepStacks Poker Tour, a multistop televised tour that will deliver the DeepStacks pros and great tournament structures and guarantees to casinos across North America beginning in February 2012.
The first stop on the tour will be at Seneca Niagara Casino in Niagara Falls, New York, from Feb. 15 to 19, 2012. The $1,500 DeepStacks Poker Tour Western New York Poker Championships will offer a $200,000 guaranteed prize pool and will be televised with award-winning commentator Joe Stapleton alongside analyst and Team DeepStacks Pro Tristan “Cre8ive” Wade.

    Season 1 of the North America DeepStacks Poker Tour will also include stops in California, Nevada, Oregon and Quebec.
    “DeepStacks has established itself as a leading brand in the poker industry. Now we’re giving players a chance to play against some of the best pros in the world on TV, without having to go broke,” said DeepStacks CEO Chris Torina. “The DeepStacks Poker Tour is tournament poker how it should be — great value, top pros and exciting television programming.”

Jason Lee

    Team DeepStacks Pros are expected to play in every DeepStacks Poker Tour event.
DeepStacks also named PokerNews as its official media partner for the DeepStacks Poker Tour. PokerNews will provide live updates for every event, including chip counts, photos. hand-by-hand updates, and recaps of every event each day. Here is a link to DeepStacks Live Poker Tour official site

“PokerNews is the industry leader in tournament coverage and live updates," said Elaine Chaivarlis, PokerNews editor in chief. "We are thrilled to be the official media partner of DeepStacks Poker Tour and will deliver top-notch coverage of its events. DeepStacks' ability to bring champion poker pros to play in affordable buy-in events is a big win for poker.”

Read more:

Bustout Poker    Next is a couple I have known for several years but finally had the opportunity to meet in person. This couple would be Jeff and Nikki Griffith from Bustout Poker! I met Jeff a few years back during a Mastadon Weekend with a group of poker bloggers. It wasn't until here recently that I had the pleasure to see him again and meet his wife. If you've been on my blog or my Facebook, at all, you already know that I am a big fan of Bustout Poker!! These are some great people who have a passion that most of us share.. poker. But they have taken that passion to another level with Bustout Poker!
    "Bustout Poker is the brain child of semi-professional poker player, Jeff Griffith. In June 2009, the Columbia, SC native realized that there was no premium apparel line that the poker community could identify with. After sharing his vision with lifelong friend and successful entrepreneur, Jimmy Hancock, Bustout Poker, LLC was born. In addition to offering high quality poker inspired apparel, including hoodies, fashion T-shirts, and hats, we have also begun to introduce our own line of innovative poker related accessories. To date we have sold products in over twenty-two countries around the world."

    "At Bustout Poker our primary mission is not to be just another poker t-shirt company, but to build a complete poker brand that represents everything great the poker world has to offer and more importantly, one that poker players everywhere can be passionate about!"
Grinder Gear Clothing Co.    Here is a direct link to the site  or you can just click on one of the many banners that are available here on my blog.
    So, what's the big announcement with Bustout Poker!?! Well, I'm still not sure of an exact date yet, but Bustout has a new line (brand) of gear coming out soon! Grinder Gear Clothing Co. You can check out the Facebook info and pics here!/grindergearclothing  AND you can go to and register at Grinder Gear Clothing Co. for some upcoming promotions to kick things off!

Last, but definitely not least, is my buddy from Canada, Jeff Burnett aka the AceTenBomber. Jeff is a professional poker player that I met online a couple of years ago during a competition with Victory Poker. Since our online meeting I have had the opportunity to travel to Canada and meet him, his wife Cindy and several members of his Team... The Bomb Squad.  In recent weeks I have had the opportunity to make posts from my blog onto the home page of the official AceTenBomber site. Here is a link that will provide more information about Jeff, his passion for poker and his team... The BombSquad!
    I featured Jeff in one of my earlier posts on my blog if you would like to visit it as well. So, on to the announcement! There are actually two announcements coming from the AceTenBomber camp, but I am only able to give you info about one of them at this point in time. The other, well... I'm still in waiting for it myself, but I've been teased with the upcoming notification.
    Anyway, the most recent announcement...... In a time when good news in the poker world is sometimes as rare as getting delt a Royal Flush……today Orillia native Jeff Burnett known in the poker world as THE ACETENBOMBER signs a sponsorship deal with Canada’s premium poker club establishment, PlayGround Poker Club of Kahnawake, Quebec. While the undisclosed financial terms are kept under-wrap, the PlayGround deal is now Jeff’s second major sponsor supporting Canada’s ACETENBOMBER. The other major sponsor on Jeff’s jersey is RMS, »Refund Management Services. RMS is Canada’s premium tax refund experts for winning Canadian gamblers who play in the USA and want the US tax returned from their winnings across the boarder. PlayGround Poker Club of Kahnawake Quebec is without a doubt the TOP professional poker room for players and professionals in Canada. The luxurious surroundings, excellent dealers, and spectacular food at The Rail, and the clubs stated purpose of creating such a unique poker club >For the players – By the players< is the real deal.  Here's a link to go check out the Playground . Hosting multiple poker tournaments featuring celebrities, sports superstars, and international poker pros is what makes the trip across the Mercier Bridge so worth it, you just never know who you might be sitting down beside at a poker table.

  Canada’s ACETENBOMBER has spawned a grass roots following of poker players and fans from all over Ontario, Quebec and internationally. Burnett has appeared on major television broadcasts as well as many TV tables along side the likes of pros Gavin Smith, Huck Seed, Greg Mueller, Andy Bloch, and ,many others. The Bombers unique and energetic table play antics combined with his all Canadian red jersey has created a poker following phenomena, with thousands of Bomber Nation fans, and his own group of networking poker players who make up his very own Team Bomb Squad the brand just keeps getting bigger each and every year. A CEO of his own formed company a website that allows players and fans to interact with the Bomber and all the Nation, post blogs, create profiles, blog, and chat, are just some of the things this site offers as well a very successful poker clothing line. The site gets over 3000 hits on average per day and over 140,000 on average per month with last March breaking a all-time record of 240,000 in just one month!!!
    Well, I think I'm gonna call it it night on this one. I'm sure that there will be plenty more announcements from all my friends across the felt, and when they are out... I'll let you know!
    Thanks Mark! for the invite and the opportunity to be on the show! and Chris... wow! good luck with all your upcoming adventures!! and Jeff & Nikki... good luck to you guys as well, good (great)things are happening!! and to my bud Jeff Burnett... dude, hurry up with the new announcement, now I have to do an adendum to the post!! just kidding!! Good luck to you as well my friend.... hope to see all of you again real soon!!! chapelout



Saturday, December 10, 2011

Top Five...No Buys! with Alternative Suggestions!

    Whether it's for a birthday, anniversary or for the upcoming Christmas present... here is a quick "No Buy" reference list to use while you are out shopping for that special poker player in your life. Actually, don't waste your time or money for anyone with theses items!

    1. Automatic Card Shuffler- These shufflers are actually more trouble than their worth. ... unless of course you can find one of these on a great deal---------------------------------->>>>>
Otherwise you will find the actual machine in a future yard sale or donated to a local recycling bin. So, save your money and consider getting them some really nice playing cards from Copag. Go to and order them now!

    2. Poker for Dummies Book- Unless it is a gag gift, this book is also a waste of time and money. It's  obvious that if your buying for a poker player they probably already have the basic knowledge of the game. There are plenty of good books available for the poker player in your life, and most of them are not going to be insulting as this one would. My suggestion.... go to and order "The Poker Journey" by Cris Belkewitch. I had the opportunity to meet and play with Cris in a recent charity event, he's a great guy and has a lot to share in his book!

   3. Cheap Poker Saying T-Shirts- These shirts may seem funny to you, but most poker players want to be taken seriously. These shirts may be worn around the house, while doing yard work or maybe even in the bedroom, but if they make it off the hanger on the day of a tournament or big event it's probably gonna be the undershirt to the one that is intended to be worn! Again, save your time and money... have a good laugh when you see them, but leave them on the rack! If you really want to impress the poker player in your life, get them some Bustout Poker Gear!! Go to and check out the best poker apparel and accessories on the market!  Whether it's for him or her Bustout has what you are looking for! Just click on one of the banners on the sidebars here on my blog and see for yourself!

call Bryan at 262-490-3812
    4. Fold Up Table Tops- Here is another item that will soon be seen in the next garage sale on the block! Do yourself a favor and don't crowd the kitchen or dining room table with these cheap table toppers. Convenient and portable, yes. But don't waste your time or money... unless of course you just want to keep the game from coming to his or your house next week ( and any other week for that matter!). If you really want to impress this player/host and his guests go to and check out the best poker tables made on the planet! Choose from their stock of inventory or have it custom made for the player in your life! There is a link at the top right of the sidebar of my blog. It will be the best investment ever made in your poker journey for a table, not just any table... the best on the planet! from OffTilt Poker Tables!

    5. Silly Costume Sunglasses- I know, I know... Greg Raymer. Well, it worked for him, but don't expect the same results for them! Again, most poker players want to be taken seriously! They want to look good, feel comfortable and be taken seriously. You want them to be able to say that about the glasses they are wearing!?! Then get them some Blue Shark Optics! Follow this link   or any Bustout banner on my blog and check out the glasses made specifically for poker players! These are not shades you want to wear to eliminate the sun, they are glasses made to hide your eyes and enhance your image and clarity of the cards! I've seen them and I've worn them... check out the different styles!  you can also check out the poker apparel and accessories here on the AceTenBomber's site...

well, that's it for now...chapelout   GetSome.GIVEBACK.GetHome.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

..."The" Grinder...

   Grinder is a term used to describe a tight, rock-like poker player that approaches the game with an attitude and mentality of one that is fearless to any and all given aspects of the game. In poker there are those who will consider themselves grinders because of the long and tenacious hours and sessions that they have put there body and mind through, but there is only one who is known as "TheGrinder"! If you know anything about poker and the poker community you know who I am referring to... Michael "TheGrinder" Mizrachi.
    Mizrachi is one of my favorite players because of his attitude and approach to the game, but also because of his ruthless disregard to what/how most traditional poker players are going to engage themselves within the game itself to establish a dominant presence at any table.  You don't become a champion just because you have a cool nickname, you have that name BECAUSE you have proven yourself as a champion!
    Mizrachi has been grinding it out for quite some time now and has the battle scars to prove that he has what it takes, not only to crush the opposition on the felt but also, to withstand the many obstacles that are going to come your way in life in general as well. Granted, I don't know "TheGrinder", never spent any time with him personally and couldn't tell you what the real Mizrachi, outside of the persona he has established within the poker community is like... but I do know that the man is a proven champion.
    Mizrachi took the poker world by storm back in 2005 when he finished fifth at the World Poker Open in Tunica, captured his first WPT title at the LA Poker Classic AND cashed in seven events during the WSOP. In 2006 he continued his WPT dominance... again at the World Poker Open with a second place finish and then by taking down the Borgata Winter Open. He was also named CardPlayer's Player of the Year for 2006.
    These accomplishments established Mizrachi as one of the best players on the felt. But it wasn't enough to keep Mizrachi satisfied. He wanted to conquer the game, the opponents and the titles within the WSOP as he had done in the WPT. Although it didn't come as quickly for him as it did in the WPT events he continued to battle with the tenacious never give up attitude that eventually paid off in 2010. At the start of the 2010 WSOP Mizrachi took down his first WSOP Title by crushing the field of the $50k Players Championship Event, and final tabled three more events... finishing fifth out of seven thousand three hundred nineteen players in The Main Event. Most recently, Mizrachi has captured another title... the first ever WSOP Europe 10k Holdem Split Format.
    I will be playing in a charity event this weekend and hope to have the opportunity to meet "The Grinder"! He is one of many pro's who have committed and are scheduled to participate in the events. The U.C.A.R.E. Charity Poker Tour will be in Richmond, Virginia this weekend at the Holiday Inn I-64  West End. There will be four tournaments scheduled and there will be a live deepstack poker training session sponsored and held at the event by... Michael "TheGrinder" Mizrachi.
    For more info you can follow the link or just scroll down and read some of my previous posts that provide all the links to introduce you to the event, the founder, the host location and the sponsors!  

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Gone Huntin'... for Fish

Over the years I have had the opportunity to go fishing with family and friends and I even have some good stories to tell, one in particular that my youngest brother and I will never forget... he carries a scar as proof of the story and a constant reminder of our very first fishing trip. But today I want to talk about the "fish" you will undoubtedly run into on the felt. And hopefully with a little patience, observational skills and a little luck on the river for yourself you will be able to hook, reel and gut their stack!

In poker, a "fish" is the term used to describe bad players. Whether you are playing in a tournament or (preferably) a cash game you want some fish at your table! And in most cases you want them to be seated to your right so you can capitalize on thier mistakes! However, when playing with unknown players you will want to be cautious early on until you can recognize the fish at the table and categorize them. Categorize them!?! Yep... just as the fish in the river, there are different types of fish you will see on the river!

There are basically three types of fish in poker.
The first and usually the easiest to play with/against are commonly known as "calling stations". These players just hate to fold! They will play any two cards, draw for farfetched opportunities and will call your flop bet with any pair, draw or even Ace high. For the most part, position, betting and any other strategy that is applied by good players is not relevant because in most cases it is not even recognized by the fish. So, continue to play your game against them, but don't get crazy with it... fish are bad players, but they do have winning sessions! The only bullet you may want to refrain from using against the "calling station" is any kind of bluffing strategy. Remeber, these players hate to fold, thus leaving your bluffs with a minimal profitability rating! The best thing to do against any calling station is to stick to your game plan, control the pot size and maximixe your profits by exploiting their obvious mistakes! Keep in mind that they will win some pots, but don't get discouraged or berate the players decisions or abilities at the table... you do not want to scare the fish away!! 
The second type you want to be aware of are referred to as a/the "rock". These players are complete opposites from the calling stations. The "rock" is an extremely tight player who folds a lot. They have a tight range of hands usually waiting for premium hands (AA,KK,AK,AQ or suited face connectors etc.) regardless of their position. It's usually easy to steal their blinds and post flop pots from late position, especially the button, with a well calculated bet/raise. Pre-flop they will fold to the raise and post flop they will usually fold even their premium hand if they didn't hit the flop. Drawing is not what they want to do. It is very difficult to get money out of these players. While bluffing was not recommended against the calling station, slow playing your hand is something you want to avoid against the rock. Giving the opportunity to see free cards to a rock is never a good thing, make a reasonable raise pre-flop and a c-bet post flop to find out where you are. Most of the time the c-bet will end the hand, but if it doesn't... beware! Control the size of the pot or just lay it down, getting money/chips out of these players is like squeezing blood from a rock (thus the name!). So, if you end up in a big pot and have to shove or call a shove it's in your best interest to have the nuts! 
And now we come to.... the "maniac". These players deserve the reference as maniacs!! These players, like the calling stations, want to be in every hand and usually play extremely aggressive (from any position). Of the three types of fish you definitely want the maniac on your immediate right! Any sign of weakness from their opponents will entice extreme aggression. These players will force the action, overplay there cards and donk off chips left and right. The maniacs are the hardest to contend with because you never know what they might be playing. Ace-rag, suited-connector there's really no telling. But if you are patient, stick to your game and bait them well when you have a strong (made) hand, just sit back and let the fireworks begin!
 As mentioned before, these are bad players... but even bad players have winning sessions. My advice... PlaySmart.BePatient.StayFocused

chapel out..........GetSome.GIVEBACK.GetHome............