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Killer Poker Online 2 : Advanced Strategies for Crushing the Internet Game
Since the 2003 publication of the groundbreaking Killer Poker Online, the Internet game has exploded and the online poker landscape has completely changed. More than 150,000 people are logged in and playing online for real money every day. What does this mean for you? Lots of opportunities to take serious money from novices. Update your Internet play now and make sure you get your share. In Killer Poker Online/2 You'll learn how to:
Understand and exploit the patterns, tendencies, and weaknesses of online players
Play winning strategies that are not possible in real-world games
Beat the unique sit-and-go tournament
Vanquish foes in heads-up play
Recognize the pitfalls of online cash games
Navigate and dominate full-field online tournaments
The online game these days is both easier and harder to beat, and with Killer Poker Online/2, you'll learn the latest strategies to bring home the cash.
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August 31, 2006
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Excerpt from Killer Poker Online 2 by John Vorhaus
I pulled my cell phone from my pocket and hit "2" to speed dial my wife. The call connected, but went straight to voice mail. "Hi, this is Anne," my wife's recorded voice said. "I'm sorry I missed your call, but--"
I hit the pound key and spoke after the beep: "Hey, it's me. I busted out. Call me when you get the message."
After two days at the 2005 World Poker Tour Championship at Bellagio, two days spent playing the best poker of my life against the toughest field of professional players I've ever seen in one place, I'd taken a terrible beat at the hands of an internet player, and two hands later, took another one at the hands of Annie Duke. I went from seventh in chips to staring into Lake Bellagio in a matter of minutes. Such is the reality of no limit tournament poker.
I closed my phone, shoved it deep into my pocket, and stared into the lake. A few minutes later, a fellow poker player gave me a Newcastle Brown Ale. "You look like you could use it," she said.
I thanked her, put the bottle to my lips, and drank. I leaned on the rail and resumed staring into the lake. Suddenly, Con Te Partiro boomed and the Bellagio fountains came to life. While they danced, a hand gently tapped me on the shoulder.
I turned around. "Yes?"
The hand belonged to a kind-faced woman who said, "I just saw you bust out. I'm so sorry."
I shrugged my shoulders. Wallowing in misery is every poker player's privilege, as long as we keep the details of our bad beats to ourselves.
"Would you be willing to talk to John Vorhaus?"
John Vorhaus, I thought, where have I heard that name before?
"John's a journalist and the author of Killer Poker."
I wondered if she was just continuing her thought, or if I had a big, fat tell that let her right into my mind.
Of course! I thought. Ryan gave me Killer Poker for my birthday last year.
"Sure," I said. "But give me a few minutes to compose myself, okay?"
"Of course," she said. "We'll be inside when you're ready."
She walked back into the Fontana Room, and I looked at the lake, the fountains, the Eiffel Tower across The Strip . . . anything to remove the image of two hideous queens hitting the flop from my mind.
A few minutes (and a couple more Newcastles) later, I walked back into the room. I glanced at my chips, neatly stacked in front of Mr. Bust Wil's Kings, and found the kind- faced woman. She stood next to an equally kind-faced man. He wore wire-rimmed glasses and a khaki vest. He made notes as Phil Ivey and Greg Raymer raised and reraised each other preflop. If he hadn't been wearing an UltimateBet cap, I never would have pegged him for a poker writer. He looked more like a war correspondent from Vietnam or El Salvador.
"Ivey's been beating up this table for hours," he whispered to her. "Raymer just came over the top of him for about 30,000."
Raymer put on his trademark "Fossilman" glasses and rested his chin on his hand. Ivey thought for a long time, before he tapped the felt and mucked his cards with an almost imperceptible nod to Greg.
After a lifetime in the entertainment industry, it's very difficult for me to get star struck, but as I stood there, in the Fontana Room at Bellagio, and watched the 2004 World Series of Poker champion lock horns with one of the game's rising stars, goosebumps rose on my arms. Imagine standing on the field during the Super Bowl or sitting on the bench during the NBA finals (or, if you've bought this book, standing in the Fontana Room at Bellagio during the WPT Championship) and you'll have an approximation of how I felt.
The hand having ended, the man in khaki turned to me and extended his hand.
"Hi, I'm John Vorhaus," he said.
We shook hands.
"You've met my wife, Maxx Duffy," he said, with a nod to the kind-faced woman.
"Yes," I said, as the first genuine smile in hours spread across my face. Somewhere in the back of my mind, in that place I describe as "The Monkey Brain," I knew that I'd just met two kindred spirits who were going to become lifelong friends.
"I'm blogging this for UltimateBet," John said. "Would you mind talking to me about the tournament?"
"I'd be happy to," I said.
We walked back outside, and I told John my bad beat story. He listened and took notes, and I'll never forget how we ended the conversation: "Hey, I would have played both those hands exactly the same way."
"Really?" I said.
"Oh yeah, but sometimes you do everything right and the other guy still catches a four-outer to crush you," he said. "That's poker."
Later that night, I had dinner with John and Maxx. The following day, we traded hand histories and chip counts as we covered the tournament; he for UltimateBet, and me for what I hope will ultimately become my version of Positively Fifth Street or Big Deal. Over the next five days, as we cemented our friendship, John took me under his wing and willingly answered every question I asked, no matter how stupid, about poker, journalism, poker journalism, and anything else that came into my fragile, eggshell mind. I came to realize that John Vorhaus is the living embodiment of chapter 81 of the Tao Te Ching, which says in part:
The sage never tries to store things up.
The more he does for others, the more he has.
The more he gives to others, the greater his abundance.
When you're done with this book, I'm sure you'll agree that John never stores anything up. Within its pages (and its companion Killer Poker volumes), John will be to you what he has become to me: teacher, mentor, critic, and friend.
Okay, so now you know what I know: John is a great guy . . . but before I get out of your way and let you get to the actual book you've paid to read, I would like to give an example of what a great teacher he is.
I am a member of Team PokerStars, a group of poker players that includes Greg Raymer, Chris Moneymaker, Isabelle Mercier, Evelyn Ng, and Tom McEvoy. (I, like you, also marvel at how I managed to sneak my way into this incredible company. Maybe when you finish this book, you'll come and replace me.)
Once a week, Tom faces off in a heads up match with the PokerStars player who has accumulated the most points on the PokerStars Tournament Leader Board. From time to time, Tom can't play, and another member of Team PokerStars gets the call to play in his place.
Where do you think this is going?
(When you get to the fourth page of the introduction, that's going to be really, really funny. I promise.)
Ding! I got called off the bench . . . to play against infamous tournament sensation and 2005 European Poker Tour Champion Noah "Exclusive" Boeken. I was terrified.
Ring . . . ring . . . ring . . .
"Come on, John, pick up! Pick up!"
Rin--"Hey, Cowboy Wil!"
I dispensed with the usual friendly chatter about the things we both love: baseball, our dogs, movies, and our wives. I got right to the point.
". . . so I accepted the opportunity to play, and then I found out that I'm playing against Exclusive."
There was an uncharacteristic silence while John thought.
Finally, he said, "Noah Boeken?"
"Yes. Do you think you could help prepare me for the match?"
John immediately replied, "Of course. I'll email you the chapter on heads up play from Killer Poker Online/2 right now. Call me when you're done and we'll go from there."
A weight lifted from my shoulders. "Thank you! I owe you several beers."
John laughed and hung up. A few minutes later, I printed out chapter 8, sat beneath a giant Chinese elm tree in my backyard, and began to study.
A few hours later, I was in John's office. We talked for an hour or so, and just as he did at Bellagio, John patiently answered all the questions I had, even when his answers gently indicated that I'd asked the dumbest questions in the history of the world.
"So," John said to me while I scratched his dog Ranger's ears, "how about if we log onto UltimateBet, and you can sweat me while I play a match? Then, we can log onto PokerStars, and I'll sweat you while you play a match."
I agreed and got to watch John put his Killer Poker Online into action. He talked me through each hand, discussed why he made the moves he did, and built a nice chip lead against his opponent. Then, just when victory seemed ensured, he took a horrible, horrible, horrible beat that crippled him. Two or three hands later, he was busted.
Just like me, way back when we met at Bellagio.
"Dude! That was so weak!" I said.
John shrugged his shoulders. "No," he said, calmly, "that's poker. Now you play."
So I did. John never told me what to do, but critiqued each play I made, gently and not so gently ...I felt like a quarterback getting a private lesson from Joe Montana or a baseball player learning from Ted Williams.
And so it was, with John standing at my back, that mordred_88 called my all in bet and caught runner-runner to make a straight and bust my A-K.
"This isn't exactly filling me with confidence," I said. "Maybe I should just offer Exclusive a chop on the second hand."
We laughed together.
"Okay," said John, "now let's play against each other."
"What a world we live in," I said. "Here we are, sitting not four feet from each other, surrounded by poker chips and cards, and we're going to play online."
He offered, "If you'd rather, we can play a more traditional game."