Thursday, November 19, 2009

The AP Points Race

It's been two weeks since my last post and not much of significance has happened since then. I played a total of 5 FTOPS tournaments: $216 6-max NLH, $216 7-game mixed games, $109 NLH with rebuys, $535 HORSE, and $216 6 max limit hold'em. It was brick city in all of them (I came closest to the money in the HORSE).

I spent a fair amount of time playing on Absolute Poker (AP). Each month the website through which I get rakeback runs a promotion called a "rake race" where they give prizes to the customers who earn the most rake on various poker sites. Last month with a part time effort I finished 2nd which was worth $775.

After my streak of 11 straight winning days I had a significant run of losing days. I've been really conflicted lately because if I make it to 600,000 base FPPs on pokerstars by the end of they year I earn a $6,000 bonus. Right now I'm 67,000 points away which is not a ton (I averaged 83,000 points a month last year), but I have been getting killed on pokerstars! On the other hand I have been killing on absolute poker doing fine in limited action on cake poker.

I haven't really run the numbers to see what I should do, but I'm going to do it right now!

$6,000 is a lot of money to leave hanging out there and in making it to that point I'd pick up about $3,000 in FPPs so really I'm looking at $9,000 for breaking even over about 50,000 hands on 10/20. That's 18 cents an hand which amounts to about 65% rakeback!

Now I'm going to look at what those 50,000 hands will make me on AP. I think I get about 9 cents a hand in rake back so that's $4,500. I'd earn 187,500 absolute points (the AP version of FPPs) which are worth about $1,300. I'd get two prizes in the rakeback nation monthly rake race (One for November and one for December). Conservatively I could get 3rd place this month and 2nd next month which would be $1,400. So really I'm looking at $7,200 in bonus money on AP and $9,000 on pokerstars. That's closer than I thought. When I factor in that I'm going to be playing in cupcake games instead of ball busting ones, it seems like a clear decision.

But there's more! For the rest of this month AP is offering a daily points race. The top 10 players who earn the most points each day get a cash prize. Here is the list of prizes:

1st $500
2nd $400
3rd $300
4th-6th $150
7th-8th $100
9th-10th $75

I found out half way through the first day which was the 17th so I didn't make the top 10. But I put in a major effort yesterday and came in third. I took today off, but my effort from yesterday would have put me in a solid second.

The points they use to determine the race are "status points." I'm not sure what the rules are for other stakes, but at the levels I play I get two points every time I play hand that A) I put money into the pot by, raising, calling or posting a blind and B) they rake the pot. It turns out I make about .75 status points per had on average.

Yesterday I played about 3,300 hands and made 2,500 or so points. The second place finisher had around 3,000, 1st had 4,500 or so and the fellow in 4th had about 50 less than I did. In fact I played some at the 11th hour to move past him and since it was much later in other parts of the world I'm sure he was long done with his day.

Today 1st place was won by the same guy (who also plays 6 max limit hold 'em, but plays more games at a time and longer hours than I do) who again was over 4,000 points. But 2nd was 2,100 and 3rd was only 1,900.

I'm not sure what's going to happen to the numbers over the weekend and if they guy who has been winning keeps it up I'm not going to get 1st. But I should be able to pile up a few seconds and thirds and should have a fairly easy time getting into the top 6 without really busting my ass. I'm going to give it my best over these next three days and hopefulle pick up and extra grand.

So with that in mind I'm going to be totally AP focused for the rest of the month. And given that, I'm probably going to bail on pokerstars altogether. I'm not 100% on that, but it seems like it's headed that way. It makes me a little sad. :(


Matt said...

I understand the sadness, but everything runs in cycles. Even though it seems possible, Pokerstars games can't possibly stay difficult forever. Sooner or later the best players go to other sites, or they go to B&M cardrooms, and lo and behold PS games become playable again. So consider it a temporary bailout. But I'm glad you did the numbers, and I agree completely that going with AP in 2009 is the way to go.

Anthony said...

Another interesting chaper in the the life of an on-line poker star. I always learn something new whenever I check in here. Thanks Dave -Tony F