Leftnut, good job on TV show!

Discussion in 'Ultimate Blackjack Tour' started by zweeky, Sep 22, 2007.

  1. zweeky

    zweeky Member

    Congrats to LeftNut who played brillantly and finished in second place in today's episode of UBT on CBS. When you did that 31000 bet on hand 16, I thought that chip counting was not a problem at all for you. You did a good job of not losing concentration under pressure.
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2007
  2. LeftNut

    LeftNut Top Member

    Thank you, zweeky, it means a lot coming from such a solid player like you, especially since that was the first time I'd ever sat at a live TBJ table. Quite frankly, I couldn't remember what I bet on ANY hand except the very first one, and the last two.

    I'll be out of touch for the rest of the evening. Big party here, maybe 100 people, with food, taped replay and bad karaoke until ?:?? AM tonight!
  3. TedinNaples

    TedinNaples New Member

    review of today's show

    Leftnut, I didn't realize that was you on the show today. Really great job and congratulations!!

    Maybe you can fill us in on some other details of the show. I just posted my review on the LVA forum, not realizing you were on the show. I didn't say anything about your performance, or for that matter anyone's, since only 6 hands were shown. And the most glaring mistake was John's bet on hand 25.

    Anyway, here's what I posted on LVA:

    Episode #2 was no better, or even worse, than #1:

    This time I kept track of the time and number of hands shown. Here's the rundown, of the complete hands that were shown:
    16 -- at 25 minutes into the show
    25 -- at 35 minutes into the show
    27 -- at 44 minutes
    28 -- at 52 minutes

    So we got to see a total of SIX hands, with THREE in each half-hour segment. We actually had to wade through promos, explanations, introductions, antics, commercials, and other non-playing stuff during the first 25 minutes of the show, to see just the THIRD televised hand being dealt. Then it took another 10 minutes to get to the next hand being dealt, and it was hand 25! Add another...well, you get the picture.

    No continuity, no strategies, no jostling back and forth for the lead, nothing that makes this game so exciting.

    If ClubUBT has already edited and canned the entire season of episodes -- and they all look and feel like the first two -- good luck to them! As an avid EBJ player, I was hoping these shows would educate, entertain, provide insight, be informative, etc. The first two episodes have been a bore and actually painful to watch. Painful, especially, since the betting strategies are so horrific. Why couldn't Max Rubin tell the viewers the ultimate bet that John SHOULD have made on hand 25? For those of you who can't watch the show, here's the simple scenario:
    Hollywood Dave is in last place, John is just ahead of him:
    Dave 63500 bets secret
    John 85000 bets 9000
    9000?!?!?!? Why? Huh? Even if Dave splits his bankroll (which he wouldn't have done anyway) and wins, that would give him 94500. John's 9000 win would give him 94000! Duh!
    At least have Max explain that a bet of 42000 would have accomplished the following:
    If Dave goes all in and wins, he has 126500. John's bet of 42000 and a win would give him 127000.
    John can still surrender his 42000 to drop 21000 to 64000 and still force Dave to win his hand.
    Maybe if Max would explain strategies such as this one, many smart viewers may realize and say, "Hey, there's more to this game than just blind luck. I understand that betting move, and if I can figure out others, then I can have an advantage at this game. Where do I sign up again? Better watch that next commercial!"

    Oh, and what about those ads and promos that say you can win $10,000!?!? What a crock of *&^%. You CANNOT win $10,000 on the club. Yes, there's a $10,000 tournament, but first place is worth $2,500! AND, given that these viewers are watching a BLACKJACK show, isn't it logical that they're going to think they can win $10,000 playing BLACKJACK?!?! Well, that's not even close to possible on the club, since there isn't even a $10,000 BJ tournament.

    And while I'm addressing "truth in advertising" -- What's up with Max, during the intros, saying that the internet qualifier (now I know it was Leftnut) on the show won his seat at ClubUBT.com?!?! That's a lie. There was no Club when this event was taped. Yes, the seat was won on PLAYUBT, but it wasn't CLUBUBT. Shame, shame.
  4. toonces

    toonces Member

    Nice Job on the show, Brian. I like all of your elimination bets. It's fun to bet with a lead :)

    The only bet that made TV that I do differently is that I would have tried to cover Dave's all-in bet.

    Finally, on the last hand, I think I would stay on the 15 against the opponent you had. I think this may be a case where a push is as bad as a loss, and your chances of winning the hand outright, is better if you stand.

    On the other hand, if your opponent is HD or another pro, I like the hit, because if you stay on a stiff, they will get a free double and use it.
  5. toonces

    toonces Member

    Well, it's no different than last year when they said that the qualifier won his way via playubt.com which wasn't online until the shows started to air.
  6. Monkeysystem

    Monkeysystem Top Member Staff Member

    Nice Job Lefty

    I just got done watching my tivo'd copy of week 2. You're a great player and a class act.

    I'm sure we'll be seeing you on TV again....
  7. LeftNut

    LeftNut Top Member

    Ohhhhhh, the pain

    Thanks again to everyone for your kind comments! I did the best I could for a first-time live-table competition. Comments like these are frosting on the cake for me, and I really appreciate them, be they critical or not!

    Some of the following was swiped from a post I did at LVA.
    I'm just way too burned out from last night, wow - what a party!!!!! :cheers:
    First of all, ya gotta understand that I'm Just One Of The Guys here. This was a bar full of hardworking middle class folks there to celebrate for one of their own. Our UBT party in a close friend's bowling center bar got to be quite the rollicking affair. Nearly 100 friends and acquaintances hootin' and hollerin' at the taped replay on the monstrous TV screen. Three standing ovations:
    1. I had hard 14, hit it with a 6. They showed me signaling for the card by tapping (ahem!) one finger on the table. It was my signal to my friends back home that I was thinking about them during the game, and they loved it.
    2. When Dave busted out. Everyone was SO happy that the Local Guy whacked the Mouthy Star.
    3. And, of course, when I busted out on the next hand, that ovation seemed to last forever.

    Some of these folks had previously said that they were tired of hearing about it since the taping 8 months ago, not necessarily from me or Deb, but from a myriad of sources. Every single one of them - every one - told me afterwards that they couldn't believe it was such a bigtime deal and a bigtime TV show, and now understand why I was rather proud of myself when I came back from L.A.

    OK, on to comments about the show. Before anyone takes me to the woodshed for being an ungrateful S.O.B., I'm gonna say that isn't the case at all. PlayUBT.com gave me the finest hour in one of the finest days of my life, and I will be forever grateful.

    Toonces, I agree that I probably should have stood on that last hand 15. But, by God, I was not going to go out with a whimper, and that's the thought I had when you saw me smack the table for a hit. If I was going to strike out, it would be while swinging for the fences and not standing there waiting to be called out by the umpire. If I had it to do all over again, I'd still take the hit.

    As far as covering Dave's all-in on the previous hand, I figured that Erlinda was probably going to chicken-bet and I wanted to have enough bullets in the gun to have a chance to catch her in the three remaining hands. Plus, a double would have saved me from getting passed by Dave if he won. If Dave busts and I'd gotten a crap hand, I could surrender and still have a shot at her because I'd bet AFTER her on hand 29 with my secret still in play for hand 30. When I got 19, I knew that I stood an excellent chance of being just a very small bit behind her, and the only card under that Ace that the dealer could beat me with was a 9. Which, of course, she had. Damn.

    I was disappointed with the editing job for the final show product. They turned it into the freakin' Hollywood Dave Hour!!! There were a lot, and I mean a LOT, of verbal cannonballs lobbed back at him, but very few of those were shown. Maybe they just didn't want the star player being shown getting the short end of the banter.

    There was one particular scene that wasn't included, and Deb & I are just stunned. I had a huge walnut with me as a prop, a play on the "LeftNut" moniker. Just before we played the hand that knocked Dave out, I handed him the walnut and asked if he wanted help from my lucky charm. He took the nut, looked at it, held it up - and dropped it on the floor where it broke in half. He hollers "Dude! I busted your nut!" and everyone in the place went crazy. Cutting that out of the show while keeping the somewhat stupid "stroking the beagle" bit is simply amazing to me.

    Another cut that I was rather egotistically hoping to see in the show was a comment from Max when they were shooting a coming-out-of-commercial bit, I think it was after hand 16. Some of it remained, they showed me smiling a bit at what he was saying about that Internet guy. But Max had also said something similar to "I don't know where this Internet guy came from, but he's my pick to win it all!" Perhaps if I'd won, they'd have left it in. Oh, well.

    As far as my ability to count chips, one must realize that it was relatively common to have 5 minutes between hands while they adjusted camera angles or reshot scenes. Even a blockhead like me could figure things out with that much time.
  8. TXtourplayer

    TXtourplayer Executive Member

    Congratulations Leftnut

    I'm sorry I missed the show yesterday, I was playing in a tournament. From everyones posts it sounds like you did very well, again congratulations on your 2nd place finish.

    I hope to see your show at a later time.
  9. Drbass

    Drbass Member

    Add my congrats

    Just wanted to add my congrats for a well played round. Great Job!
  10. pokernut

    pokernut New Member

    Ok don't leave us hanging what tourney and how did you do?
  11. rookeyc

    rookeyc New Member

    Congrats LeftNut, I didn't get a chance to see the tournament on TV.

    Actually I watch very few of these because of many of the reasons given by TedinNaples. I used to watch them hoping to pick up on some strategy, but because of the choppiness of the production and the lack of explanation of the strategy used I lost interest in the program.

    But again congrats
  12. TXtourplayer

    TXtourplayer Executive Member

    Planet Hollywood

    I was 1st low and 2nd high going into the last hand before the money round and I get swung by the table (four left with two advancing).

    Not a pretty ending...LOL
  13. Fredguy

    Fredguy New Member


    Also congratulations to Leftnut for winning his way onto TV land. I wish I had known that you were the one the announcers referred to at least 12 times as the Club UBT internet qualifier.

    I second everything that Tedinnaples said about this show. The production was glossy but the content was abysmal.And why would Mrs and Mr Dave name their child Hollywood is beyond me.

    The Club UPT commercials deserve special comment. It seems like at least 20 minutes of the 60 minute program were devoted to these abortions.
    These may have been the poorest produced commercials in the entire history of television. The graphics looked like they were done by a grade school art class, and the back ground music (noise) was not only annoying, but kind of frightening.

    This leads one to question the viability of the Club UBT business model. Has it occured to anyone but me, that Club UBT may be a scam?
  14. toonces

    toonces Member

    I don't know what you mean by this. First of all, it is definitely not a scam, as they have already sent me more in winnings than I have paid.

    As for it's business model, I'm not sure what they need to sell to make a profit, but they seem to be investing a lot of money into developing the UBT and elimination blackjack as a profitable venture. As you know, their original ideas were pulled out from under them by the UIGEA. Now, they have a business model which surely is less lucrative, but has the potential to meet their goals.

    I expect that they are planning to run ClubUBT for at least a year at a loss before they will figure out how to make it profitable. But while it runs at a loss is probably the time you will have the most equity in that.

    As for the commercials, I do think they are missing out somehow. All of the insessant commercials during the show for ClubUBT I would expect most people to be turned off by, especially thows without a TiVo. I know they are not selling enough advertising, but there has to be a better solution. My suggestion at this point would be to go to limited commercials and have them more integrated to the show. For example, have Max say, "This show is being brought to you with limited commercial interruption thanks to ClubUBT, who offers blackjack and poker tournaments at no risk. For more info, and to win a seat at a future ClubUBT event go to ClubUBT.com" Then cut it down to 3-4 commercials over the whole show and replace it with more content.
  15. Billy C

    Billy C Top Member


    Congrats on your TV appearance that I've been reading posts about. Sorry to say that I missed the viewing because I was fishing in a Musky tournament over the weekend (NO FISH, which is a lot like no cards).

    Billy C
  16. fgk42

    fgk42 New Member

    UBT – Episode 2

    Grade: Style – B
    Substance: C-
    Overall effectiveness: D

    Style: I’ve gotta hand it to some of the creative people at UBT. Their intro IS exciting. They’ve done a good job of editing to “create” a look and feel of excitement. Having said that lets take an in detail look at other aspects of “style”.

    With this match only going 25 hands there was a potential to show many more hands than UBT chose. Personally some of the cutaways, in particular Shandi’s explanation of the game could/should have been done as a box in a box that is particularly common with sporting events. That way the progression of hand 1 bets could have been observed.

    Commentators: Max and Mattie. What can I say about these two? Some of the best “one liners” came from Mattie. For example:

    [Talking about HD] “Next up a little lesson from the little man..right after this commercial break.”

    There were two other notable lines from Mattie, one to Max and the other directed to HD but without the Tivo I don’t want to misquote him.

    The banter between Max and Mattie – I would have liked to hear more of that and less of the special sound effects when the cards were being dealt. Is it me or did they (UBT) steal the sound effects from “Who wants to be a millionaire?”

    Finally the biggest style points for the episode go to….”Hollywood” Dave Stann. Now while some have noted his style and consistent chatter as being annoying – HD knows how to work the audience and “style” for the camera. From the way it was edited you would almost think that HD himself worked for UBT. Hey wait he does – doesn’t he?

    I thought that with the cut-aways, the constant chatter, the camera angles and unfortunately for HD, the way the game went, HD was in the spotlight a lot. If I had to choose a title for Episode 2 it would be, the “Hollywood Dave Show”

    Now having seen HD on the WSOB, on UBT Season 1 and played against HD in person and online - I can honestly say this, HD does his best work “on screen”. Now before people begin to murmur – that’s a compliment, not a knock. This appearance was 100x better than his WSOB rant which made HD appear childish and silly. His constant chatter prompted John to make a really dumb bet. And I believe his read on the player in seat 1 was pretty darn good.

    The problem is that without seeing more hands you don’t really know how the players got to the positions that we saw on hands EH-1 and EH. I mean Brian slowly and quietly I might add, was BR1/BR2 until the lady popped the all-in. For some reason all I could think of watching this episode, especially with the cut away to the studio audience, was “Who Wants to be a Millionaire.”

    Promo for Barona and last week’s promo for Venetian. NICE! Now I know WHY they signed on to host UBT events. This was great free advertising. Lots of style and even though I’ve been to the Venetian, it made me want to go again.

    Substance: This is the downfall of UBT Season 2. With so few hands being shown it really behooves the announcers to do more to “educate” the viewers. When a player uses their secret bet (SB) in a really dumb position they need to explain WHY. When Brian places a bet that gives him the hi and low they just let it pass without any explanation.
    How about telling the home audience that when the dealer has a face card showing there is only a 23% chance that the dealer is going to bust – that’s why Brian needs to hit his 15. The home audience sees that the dealer has a 15 and wonders, why is that player taking a card?

    I really think that after watching two episodes of UBT that the WSOB, Season 4, was hands down far superior to UBT. Max is a great, funny witty author, just read his column in All In. Here on UBT – I just don’t know WHY he’s there.

    The SB booth. Holy Cow does it look more and more like a porta potty. Especially from the “hidden” camera in the booth. The next time I’m at the state fair I’m gonna think twice about using those outdoor facilities. As for THIS episode it’s fitting because one of the players, John, crapped out in the use of his SB. But as we saw by his elimination bet he didn’t get there with skill. (Another example of luck trumping skill BTW)

    COMMERCIALS: How pathetic are they? I had this program TiVo’d and the commercials STILL bugged the heck out of me. The music was something right off of those cheesy movies that I’ve made. And those characters and lines they used! Boy it really made ME want to rush out and join Club UBT. NOT!

    As I was fast forwarding the one my wife stops and says, hey, what’s a phone sex line ad doing on there? I stopped it so she could see it. She STILL thought it had the appearance of a phone sex ad – just not as nicely done. The style points that UBT got vanished quicker than an ice cube on the sidewalk in Naples in August on those commercials. The people who gave UBT advice on those commercials must have been the same person who game Michael Jackson child rearing tips!

    WINNERS: Participants in the show
    Barona & Venetian casinos
    Producer and editors of UBT
    LOSERS: Producer and editor of ClubUBT commercials
    Investors in UBT
    Based on my initial impression of episodes 1 & 2 and the feedback that I’ve heard from people who happened to stumble on the show I highly doubt that there will be an season 3. As far as ratings are concerned – does it really matter? Unless CBS “waves” the fees for UBT, something I highly doubt they will do, I can’t see the people behind UBT forking over more $ for a season 3.

    I hope I’m wrong about this I really do, but if I, a hard core UBT player, can’t get excited and behind this Season 2 is there really any hope that John Q Public will?

    A final note: Brian – I like your bets – even the 50K on with HD going all in. I thought that the editors did a real nice job of making you look quiet, thoughtful and insightful. What a miraculous editing job! But seriously – nice job something to be proud of!
  17. TedinNaples

    TedinNaples New Member

    Reply to Fred and Toonces

    Fred, EXCELLENT POST!!! You said everything I wanted to say and more. Kudos for your thorough analysis. Now that you've graded various aspects of the show, I'll chime in with my grades -- which are not as generous as yours:

    Grade: Style: B
    Substance: D
    Overall effectiveness: F

    From what I understand from the "powers that be" at ClubUBT, they were REALLY banking on the TV shows to bring in the thousands of paying players they'll need to just break even. I doubt these shows have done much for them so far. Doing a recent quick look at the number of players in completed tournaments on the Club, it doesn't look like they've increased their paying membership by much. And if future shows are similar to the first two -- with all those nutty commercials -- they won't be generating too many additional players.

    Exactly -- if players like us are annoyed by the show, just imagine John Q Public who has no clue about EBJ and what's happening during the hour-long program.
    Like you, I would love to see this thing succeed, but...

    Toonces said: I expect that they are planning to run ClubUBT for at least a year at a loss before they will figure out how to make it profitable. But while it runs at a loss is probably the time you will have the most equity in that.

    If that's so, then their investors must be willing to shell out over one million dollars. They have to be losing at least $100,000 every month when you include the cash/prizes given away, the salaries of the entire staff, the overhead costs (software, hardware, rent, etc.), advertising, and production of the shows. And what is the upside? Do these investors expect to double their money? By when? My fear is they'll pull the plug after the last of the Season 2 broadcasts. Other than Barona's two tournaments later this year, there isn't a single live UBT event planned. Oops -- oh yes, there's that cruise. Makes one wonder.

    And I agree that now is the best time to play at the Club while there are fewer and less knowledgable players to compete against.

    I've got my fingers crossed, hoping the cruise will still sail in April.
  18. LeftNut

    LeftNut Top Member

    Zweeky, TedinNaples, Toonces, Monkeysystem, Drbass, Rookeyc, TxTourPlayer, Fredguy, Billy C, FGK.
    You have no idea how stunned I am at all the congrats. Grateful, too. Thank you all. :cheers:

    FGK's post is a thing of beauty! So is Ted's. Sure would be good for UBT if UBT would take a hard look at those - and themselves - without jumping to the conclusion that posts like those are insulting. There's some seriously good stuff in there and it would behoove them to make some fast changes using the advice and comments.

    By the way:
    :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:
    The miracle of TV editing. Made Dave look taller, too, didn't they? :D
  19. fgk42

    fgk42 New Member

    Well I can't speak for UBT or those "powers that be" but I can say this. Whomever vetted the commercials should be taken out to the shed and soundly whipped.

    What were they thinking?

    "There's no risk" What do you call a monthly membership fee? So if someone pays the 19.99 they're guarenteed to get it back in prizes? I HIGHLY doubt it. Hey you can win up to 10,000 in the poker and BJ tournaments.

    Once again false advertising. Sure they have monthly 10,000 tournaments but the winner doesn't get 10K. I know you've alread covered that Ted but it bears repeating that these commercials really stretch the truth.

    How about the commercial with Kenny E, dressed like a kid from the 'hood saying, "hey it's legal". Darn right it better be! Why bring up that topic in the first place?

    Wouldn't it be better to have World Champion BJ player, Kenny E, dressed in his moniker yellow jacket say, "Hey I play on Club UBT where I get my game on before taking it to the streets. Are you up to the challenge. See if you've got what it takes to compete with the best of the best. I'll see YOU on "The Club". Then have a play against Team UBT day of the week. Have all of Team UBT in a single tourney.

    Now I know Kenny E, Phil H, Annie Duke, Freddy Deeb, HD, etc., don't want to waste their time playing online and possibly getting beat. So hire flunkies to play under their names. It's ONLINE guys! John & Jane Doe just wanna have their shot at beating the "pro's" - See the prior thread from the players at the UBT final tables.

    1 million? Better multiply that by 3 or 5 times. You forget how much UBT pays CBS for the rights to air UBT. Remember this is nothing more than an hour-long infomercial for Club UBT.

    Now I won't suppose to guess what the cost is to host the site, IT support, Live support, but the prizes that they are giving away are probably in the 75,000/month vicinity (lets face it most of the actual prizes, keyboard, radio, necklace, are overpriced by 50% and they had to get a good deal of the cruises so they list it as retail but purchase wholesale and group rate). But for argument sake in order to cover the 100,000 outflow each month they need 5,000 monthly members paying 19.99.

    Now the eager beavers and BJ AP players paid in full so they, Club UBT, doesn't have the residual income there. Think of it like a stadium seat deposit. The question is how many John Q Publics will plunk down 19.99 for MULTIPLE months?

    As for the cruise - I wouldn't worry Ted. With this being a US based business I'm almost certain they've paid for the tickets already - to get the best deal. My thought is that you've won yourself a nice 7-day Carnival cruise but what about the onboard tourney's. You'll probably have 1 BJ and 1 poker tourney and they will likely award the left over prizes from the defunct Club UBT offices - plenty of polo shirts, visors, caps, keyboards, mouse pads and maybe even the golf bag.

    If Club UBT does have onboard tournaments I would expect that they will collect an entry fee from the participants. But that is purely a guess on my part.

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