Aces PotW Conclusions


While my week of grinding tournaments at Running Aces was very profitable, I won’t run that good every week, and I came to some conclusions I wouldn’t have expected.

1. The promotion is probably a very good one. Once you get a few cashes you are going to play all week to try to make sure that you get some of those tournament dollars. I think they should probably promote it more, maybe with a big board behind the tournament desk and a webpage with the rankings and an explanation of the way the whole thing works. The Player of the Week page on the site right now links to the PotW standings from the third week of February…

2. One of the reasons that the promotion is so good is that it doesn’t cost the house anything. The money for the tournament dollars comes right out of the prize pools of the tournaments themselves. 3% comes out of the prize pool of each tournament for the PotW promotion. The $100 in tournament dollars I won last week is probably a lot less than I have paid into that prize pool from the 3% of the prizes I have won in tournaments since it has been running. This means that if you are not playing enough tournaments to get some PotW money, you are subsidizing the people who are in the hunt. If you are just playing the bigger tournaments, then you aren’t likely to be in the hunt, and you are subsidizing the players who are playing all of the smaller buy-in tournaments to get those PotW dollars.

3. The smaller buy-in tournaments are really tough to beat. The fields are ultra soft, and they are better structures than most lower buy-in weekly tournaments around the country, but starting with 5,000 in chips and short blind levels, as well as paying a very high rake percentage, makes it tough. The $50 buy-in tournament I played came out to $34+$16, or 32% juice. It’s tough to make any money paying that much rake in a fast structure no matter how soft the field is. This isn’t Running Aces fault, that’s how it always is in smaller buy-in tournaments and the house has to make a few dollars. Making a few dollars requires them to take a larger percentage when the buy-in is small, so I don’t begrudge them their money, I just can’t make any profit playing these tournaments.

4. Winning one of the top two spots requires you to play at least eight tournaments a week, and ten is probably a better number to have a good shot at it. I thought Kat and I had the top two spots locked up on Saturday, but Tim Votava final tabled both events on Sunday and flew by us when neither of us could play on Sunday. Well done Tim. Kat and I ended up tied for 3rd and getting $100 each. With what I won for the week, I was about break even with the PotW promotion because 3% of my winnings was  close to $100.

If you wanted to play every tournament all week, or close to it, and you are a reasonable good player, you could average at least $300 a week, but you would be working a ton of hours and paying so much money in the extra PotW juice that you might be making an extra $2 or $3 per hour from the race. I’ll stick with the three $150 tournaments and the $250 Sunday Optimum for now, and I won’t always play those because the extra 3% I’ll be paying to subsidize a race that I’m not a part of irritates me.

The structures at Running Aces are good, but I play poker for money, and I have to go where the money is. These days it seems to be in home games with very low or no rake, so that’s where I will continue to play most of the time. They aren’t professional, and there isn’t great food in most cases, but the rake is right and the players are soft, so they are my best option for paying the bills right now.

I also heard zero response from my questions about a poker meet up group, so I’ll toss that idea in the muck. I figured I would get at least one or two responses since I get a few hundred readers a day, but as I’ve learned in the past, poker players don’t want to learn, they want to play. I also put up links to the schedules for every major tournament series on a separate page here on the site. You can get there by clicking on the Vegas Summer Schedule tab at the top of this site.

Follow me on twitter @foxpokerfox

Closed Circuit to Running Aces Staff – If I was a Running Aces pro, I would have all the PotW info up on a page on my own site already and you wouldn’t have to worry about it. I would also be working on helping you come up with a promotion for the PotW that makes it more profitable for serious players. Hint. Hint.

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