Friday, August 13, 2004

Here we go again.

Albrecht: Police! Don't move! I said, "Don't move!"
Eric Draven: I though the police always said, "Freeze!"
Albrecht: Well, I am the police, and I say, "Don't move!" Snow White. You move, you're dead.
Eric Draven: And I say, "I'm dead," and I move.

"The Crow"

First things first, read a great little political/poker article here. I don't care much for any political affiliation, but it gave me a chuckle so that will do.

Got back into the tournaments last night and had one of the most puzzling results I can recall.Early on I was able to double up with Big Slick when another player went all in with pocket 5's. He really thought he was on a monster with that. I hit an ace on the river, and man was he pissed. I mean come on, I know it is a free roll and all, but you can't go getting all pissed off when your 5's get busted. Anyway, he was out and I was still going. I read over at
Uwannabet about how he would like to hear stories about how people just got out played. No bad beats, lucky outs, just out played. I have a great story I think.

I'm holding As2d in the big blind, and I get to check into the flop with 3 callers. The flop is (5h 4h Ah) and I don't like the hearts. But it gets checked around to me and I think I will test it with a modest $500 bet. I get only two callers, and that will do. The turn comes (3c) and now I have a straight. I'm still worried about the hearts, but nobody is betting them on this usually loose table. I figure nobody has two hearts, and now my straight looks ok. I bet another $500, and get only one caller. The turn comes and it is a heart breaking (2h). This not only ruined my straight but put four hearts on the board when I had none. The other player calls, and I decided I better make it look like I have a higher heart than him (if he has one). I bet $2K, and he thinks about it then re-raised me another $2K. I know I am probably beat by his heart, but I need to see if he was bluffing. I call the other $2K and he shows (Ts 3h). I could cry. Yeah, I was representing a higher heart than his, but this guy was checking a straight flush. It was comforting to know that I was ahead on the turn, but I was really lucky he didn't take me for more I think. Well, if the re-raise was any more I don't think I would have called, but if he opened up the betting who knows? I don't think I could have played those cards the way he did, but damn did I fall for his trap. I had no choice, I had to post in the chat box how well I thought he played - even if I was screaming at the lucky bastard on my screen. Oh well, at least he left me with most of my chips.

Later on, I'm up to about $30K, about double the average but 3rd at the table. I have AsQs and I raise in early position pre-flop. I get three callers, and the river is (7s Ts 6d). I bet $1K, and get a fold, a call and a re-raise of $1K. I call and so does the other one. The turn is a beautiful 2s. At this stage I am pretty confident, and bet $2.5K. I get a call (yes!)...and a re-raise all in. What the fuck? Now I know I am far from poker elite status (I'm still Algae status, remember?), But I was pretty sure I was holding the best possible hand at this stage. No pairs on the board? Check! What about a flush? No, hang on I have the flush. Straight? Yeah, he could have a straight but I doubt it and besides, my flush is still good. A straight flush perhaps? Well, he doesn't have that yet. Surely I can't get rivered on a straight flush twice in one night. I call all in and so does the last player. He shows T6o for two pair, and the last player shows 77 for a set. This means that I was right, I do have the best hand in spades, but now I bet I get rivered into a full house. The river is rags, and we are now in the big time. I am now chip leader, and dominating this table. I feel good.

One of the faults of novice players I read about is not knowing how to play either position of stack size. If I was to rate myself on both of those out of ten, I would say I play position 5/10 and stack size 1/10. I am good at getting to be the largest or second stack at the table, but I have no idea how to play from there. I always see other players in that position try to push everybody else off out of the pot, but I seem to be really crap at it and usually end up giving my big stack away in chunks. Tonight, I decided that since I am crap at playing the size of my stack, I would ignore it. I remained around the top 5 stacks (out of 200 left) for some time.
Something happened though as the blinds started to get around the $1K mark. I was up to $150K, and was dealt KQo in middle position. I raised the minimum and it was folded all around. Two hands later, I have a pair of 10's, and the same thing happens. Then I got them, for the first time in the night I look down (figuratively speaking) and see those two little A's staring back at me. I bet the minimum again and it is folded all the way around for a blind steal. I decided to show my hand to the table and post in the chat box "Am I playing too tight?". I get a copy of responses in the affirmative and I knew I was set from now. Two or three hands later, I raise the minimum and again it gets folded around. I had the hammer, and boy was I hoping nobody leaves this table! I was pocketing $3K to $4K every 3 hands or so. Not much when the blinds are $800-$1600, but in each orbit I am getting more than $10K up. I am chip leader again, and with a little buffer as we go into the final 60.

For the first time ever in these tournaments, I press on over $200K (and even my flat mate is proud.). But it doesn't stop there as I catch some very nice river cards and march on to $290K with under 50 players left, and the top 27 get paid. There was one dead hand at our table - a player who had left long ago and was now posting and folding every hand. He was down to under the small blind, and he lasted about 4 orbits. Damn, I just could not get rid of him. It was becoming a bit of a table goal to get rid of "808Maverick". Sad to say, somebody else got him before me.

One of the short stacks goes all in with $30K, and I am holding AJo. I am in last position and call to go to a showdown with just the two of us. He has pocket 2's, and I am forgiven for being confident. The felt doesn't even show a picture card, and the pocket 2's are good enough. I'm annoyed, but still over $250K so all is well. Two hands later, another short stack goes all in. I am sick of stealing blinds (as nearly every hand is just that), and it look slike everybody is trying to limp into the money. I have AsQs, and I think I am good enough to call his $50K. He shows pocket 5's, and again they are good enough as the board helps neither of us. Hang on, I'm starting to get around the average now. I loose another pot when my jack kicker isn't good enough, and I have gone from top five stacks to bottom 3 in the one orbit. It is down to 28, and only the top 27 get the money. I have enough to last just 2 orbits. Luckily, I see the 28th position go out in the lobby, and I am guaranteed money. I have a $30K stack, go all in and get beaten by a pair of pocket 10's. Want to beat me? Come with pocket pairs, they kill me every time it seems.

So I go out in 27th place, and win a grand total of 13.5 cents. Oh well, what can you do? What was funny was that I never really had a monster hand. I had a few straights, one flush and the rest was two pairs or top pair/top kicker. I never saw a set all night, let alone a boat. Does that mean I played a mediocre hand well or just got lucky with the cards? Let me know what you think.

So I am bank to having a bank roll, but it may be useless. The Bugsy games have changed I think, and now you need a minimum of 100 to do anything with them as far as entering tournament go. I have 13.5 of them, not much to do with at all. What can you do? "Stop playing the stupid free rolls and put some real money on the line you dumb ass" I hear you say? Yeah, but what would be the fun in that?

On to the live game front, and I am again asking for some help. I have been trying to buy a few decks of used casino cards to go with our new poker stuff we bought. I want to buy a deck from the Bellagio, the MGM Grand and the Mirage - which just happen to be the three casinos that George Clooney and his friends try to rob in "Ocean's Eleven". I found a few sites that will sell these internationally, but postage is through UPS express and for 3 decks of cards it cost over $50US. That's just fucking ridiculous. I know the casinos hawk these off for $2 each or something, so I don't want to pay $40+ in postage for some worthless items to be here in two days when normal parcel postage that takes 2 weeks for $10 will be just fine. If anybody is on their way to Vegas any time soon and wouldn't mind picking up some of these decks for me, drop me a line and I will be happy to pay through PayPal or something for your trouble.

Thanks for reading, and feel free to critique my play as you see fit.


doubleas said...

Those casino decks only last about 3 nights before they are ready for the trash heap. I'd recommend buying some KEM cards. They are only $20 and last forever. They feel/play nicer than the casino cards as well.


Heafy said...

Thanks for that - I know they don't last but my girlfriend really just wants the casinos used in "Ocean's 11". I would love some Kem cards, but they are $50+ here in Australia and I just don't think I can justify that.

JW said...

Nice blog Heafy, it will get added to teh roll tomorrow. As to the cards, I truly wish I could pick them up for you, but my October trip got quashed. I will however post your plight on my blog to spread the word.
Heart crushing fall on that Free-roll man, just heart crushing. Sounds like you played well, you just lost more than your fair share of coin flips at the end.