By Karaoke Phil
Three years ago today I made the journey back into bar poker. I had played for quite some time with Chippy Poker, mostly at George’s on Plato – with considerable success. For reasons I don’t remember, I quit playing. George’s no longer exists. Coincidence? I think not.
After a lengthy period of time I decided to dedicate my Tuesday nights to bar poker again. A co-worker and CPL Home League player, Wanda “Steamroller” Bublitz told me about her escapades with the Free Poker Network (FPN). That opened the door at Erik’s Bar for me to return to quaffing a few beers while playing bar poker.
On December 23, 2008 I played against 34 others at Erik’s. I don’t really remember the night and I didn’t point (top 30%). I’m sure I decided to wait a week before showing them what I really had in me. On week 2, December 30, 2008, I gave everyone a preview not only of what 2009 would be – but, all the years thereafter. I won that night and have largely dominated ever since. In the interim I have qualified for 7 MN State Championships in the 7 promotions I have played – and won 4 medallions for winning the bar outright. However, I have failed – repeatedly – to take home any big prize.
FPN keeps the best stats that I’ve seen from any bar poker league. They also segment them out into groups so you can do some apples to apples comparisons. In my three years in the league I have now played 168 matches garnering more than 15,200 career points. I finish in the points 57% of the time and final table (top 8) better than 43%. I take the night down about 1 out of every 15 matches. Not too bad considering the average size of the field week in and week out over these years has been about 44 players. If poker were all random luck I should only be winning about 1/3 as much as I have.
For the podcast listeners you know that I have complained about running very cold lately – which, in all, is true. Still, I am ranked 12th nationwide out of 2031 players who have competed in 100 to 199 FPN tournaments. My career points rank me around 485th of the more than 75,000 players who have ever played in the FPN. That puts me ahead of many FPN notables including former FPN National Champ Nels Peterson and FPN staple Big Robb Butcher – both of whom have played MANY more times in the FPN than I have.
The next category for that apples to apples comparison is the final one: “Minumum 200 Tournaments Played”. I should reach that around July. As it looks now, I should enter that grouping of 900 players ranked 1st or 2nd in the country in Average Points per Tournament. I have sometimes fretted over what I perceive to be a little lackluster “Power Ranking” – but even there I should be in the top 8 nationwide. I’m currently 32nd.
Now I just need to add some “real” finishes in the various Championship tournaments to my weekly results. I’m going to keep trying.