Monday, June 27, 2005

The Up Side

Susan: I want to spend the night with you.
Josh: Do you mean sleep over?
Susan: Well... yeah.
Josh: Well, okay... but I get to be on top.

I have had a pretty good weekend poker wise. The ups were bigger than the downs, and I even made another final table appearance in a MTT, which is always nice.

In the MTT, I finished forth again for the $10 freezeout with 160 or so of my closest friends. When at the final table, I was the shortest stack and was actually able to steal a pot. On the small blind, I had $2300 and the blinds were $500/1000. I called the big blind, who raised it to $2000. I went all-in (like I should have in the first place) and he folded instead of calling the remaining $300. I had KJ, but I guess the call-raise made it look like I wanted him in the hand and he was just on a steal. Anyways, I managed to get a decent sized stack and then double up a moment later with KK – I even spent some time as the leader when we were down to four. I lost a race when calling the short stack and then lost another with AK going down to 66 I think. $53 was forth place, which was a nice little return for a bank roll my size.

On to my Paradise Poker bonus, I have decided that I don’t like some things about the site – mainly, the stats. It records stats for all sessions on the one sheet, regardless of the games. So if you play Omaha Hi/Lo and NL Holdem, they both get on the same stat sheet even thought he stats don’t really correspond to each other. A minor problem, but it annoyed me over the weekend.

Oh my, Paradise has 5 card draw poker! No doubt the majority of people learned poker via this form of the game, myself included. I thought I would give it a go at the $1/$2 level, just to see. What is it with me and all this new games of poker? I can’t just sit down and play Holdem, I have to try every different game out there. The swings in this game are surprisingly big, mainly because the tables are limited to 5 people and the hands per hour rate is 120+. Very good for clearing the raked hand requirement I thought.

Man, was I having some bad luck. I don’t think you can really call it a suck out when someone out draws you – I mean, that’s basically the name of the game, right? I had a set of jacks and a set of twos go down to a set of Aces twice. Any time I had two pair, somebody else had a better two pair. Any time I had a monster, nobody would come for the ride. When I was dealt a flush and stood pat, so did another player who was dealt a full house – hell yes I paid him off! Despite all this, I broke basically even while clearing $50 worth of raked hands. I consider this a win, but I won’ be relying on 5 card draw to grow my bank roll just now.

I did have some fun with some jackass at one draw table. I raised from the small blind with a pair of queens, and he called. I drew three cards, he drew 1. I hit another queen, so I bet again, and again he calls. He showed 2 pair and I took the pot. Well, he started blaming me and Paradise poker, saying “How can you raise with a pair against my two pair and get rewarded – unbelievable”. Mate, the game is called “draw”. You’d think I just hit a 2 outer or something. I suggested he try 5 card stud, and he took this as a personal insult. When he asked how long I had been playing at this site, in another attempt to belittle my play, I lied and said “A few months, how long have you been playing here?” To which he replied a year. Wow, a full year and he’s still on the lowest possible level trying to give out free advice. Well, here’s my free advice – pick a new hobby, your emotions aren’t cut out for poker.

Tried Omaha Hi pot limit, because I hate playing for the low. I was getting dealt crap and found it really hard to adjust to not going for the low and seeing what a decent starting hand would be. From my initial buy in of $40, I was down to just below $20 when a rivered Ace put my King high straight in jeopardy. I suspected the other player was on flush draw, but when he typed in the chat “I started with a Ace high flush…” I had to think about it. Either he was wanting to finish with “And ended with an ace high straight” or was wanting to thrown that out there as a bluff so I thought he had the straight. He bet the pot, which was more than I had left. I folded, and he didn’t show but said he had a pair of aces only. My pride won’t let me believe him.

Not long after this, I won an all-in when my turned straight won out over a flush draw. I was back to where I started. Then, holding pocket Queens and some suited rags to go with them, I saw a Queen high flop with two diamonds, 2 other players get to act before me.

EP bets the pot, MP raises the pot – ok, what the hell is going on here? Someone with a diamond draw, someone with a bluff or someone with a lower set? I decide to sort the men from the boys and once again I am able to raise the pot limit and be all-in. I have EP covered and MP is about $3 over my $40.

Both call. The turn and river puts out a straight possibility but no pairs on the board and no flush. I am immediately pissed off because you just know somebody has got a back door straight out of this. But how couldn’t I go all-in with top set on the flop? Damn, would have been nice too since the pot was now $96, probably the second largest pot I have ever been involved in (besides tournament wise). Lo and behold, the pot is pushed over to me (with excellent graphics too from Paradise poker) and my Queens hold up. I was too delierious to even look at what th eother players had. I went from just about broke to nearly triple my buy-in in two hands. Sometimes it’s great when suckouts don’t happen.

I did have an excellent run in the $10 SNG at Paradise, as these used to be my specialty at Party. I placed in the money in 4 of the first 5 – with finishes in order: 2, 2, 3, 4, 1. At this stage my total investment was $55 for a return of $130, or ROI of 160%. Yeah, I was feeling pretty confident. After the next 4 games though it evened out a little with finishes of 7,3,9,8.

Total SNG investment= $99
Returns= $150
ROI= 51%
ITM= 55%

Not a bad start for there. I was up $100 each on Friday and Saturday, and came crashing down to Earth on Sunday giving back a little bit with some horrendous luck. It was a weird weekend, even though I ended it up nearly $200, I was extremely unlucky. I don’t think I had many suckouts on my behalf (although I did crack Aces with QTo in one SNG – but I was the small stack all-in on a Queen high flop. Slow play aces = deserve what you get). Whenever it was a 60%-40% race, I lost 95%-100% of the time. No less than 6 occasions did I have the best hand one the flop, get the other player all in and then have the board show 4 of the same suit to go with one of their inferior pair.

One bad beat which made me laugh – in one of the SNG’s, heads up I have A4o and raise, he calls. Flop comes Ah4s6s. I raise, and he re-raises me all in. I have to call, and it turns out he was bluffing with two little black ducks (2s2c for the uninitiated). Turn is 5s, river 3s. Runner-runner straight flush to send me packing in second place. What can you do?

I can’t complain, the bank roll creep dangerously close to $1000 Australian again, before ducking back to just over US$700. I have nearly completed the 750 raked hands for the poker source online bonus, which will be done by the end of the week. I had a good upswing, which as soon as I acknowledged it became a down swing on Sunday. There, now I acknowledged the down swing, it can fuck off too.

Pauly continues his good work, but I can’t help noticing some immerging trends…Conversations about Evy’s underwear, numerous pics of Isabelle’s rear end, spotting random lovely looking ladies at the tables (womens event aside), is Pauly feeling the effects of being in Vegas for more than a few weeks without visiting a strip club? Hey, not that we’re complaining or anything…

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