Thursday, June 08, 2006

Actual Poker Content?

Yeah baby - I actually played poker again tonight! Mrs. Dynamite went home for a few days, and took Oscar with her, so I was left with ample opportunity to take some beats, get felted, and suckout through the back door - just like a normal Thursday night (CHA-CHING!) I've been in a catatonic mood all week, which is never a good state to play poker in, but I was hoping a few suckouts with A-Q would cure my ills.

The live game I play in is sick beyond belief. It's 1-2NL, with a $750 max buy-in, which, in case you can't figure it out, means the stacks get very deep. It's generally regarded as the biggest 1-2 game on the East Coast, but that's just by the players who play in it. I think it probably is though - it plays bigger than MOST $2-$5 games. That also means that it's frequently very hard to put an opponent on a hand - and there are some SERIOUS action players. In other words, if you raise to $15 UTG, and get called 4 times, you do not feel good with your AA looking at a Q-8-6 two flushed board out of position - you had better be prepared to play big pots.

In my first orbit, Zeke raised to $15 in early position, and was called by Mandy and Mark, two loose players, before it got to me on the button with Friday in Vegas - JJ. I made it $75 to go, from a starting stack of $300, and Zeke called me. He checked the A-Q-x flop, and I checked behind him. He bet when another ace came on the turn, and was dismayed when I mucked, as he had QQ.

In the next orbit, I raised to $10 UTG with T-T, and got called 3 times, before Mandy in the SB made it $40. Mark called, and I had $228 in my stack. It was fold or move in, and in this game, it's clearly "MOVE IN." I moved in, and Mandy called me, prompting Mark to say "If you called, I call."

I shrugged, and was not happy with a final board of 2-6-J-Q-K, which was checked down all the way. I flipped my Tens faceup, and Mandy mucked (A-9 suited) and Mark showed his 8-8. JACKPOT!

After about 2 uneventful hours in which I made some interesting plays - calling big raises with big hands (A-K) and small raises with big hands (JJ) out of position, each time surrendering on the flop. The problem in this game is that If I reraise with JJ out of the BB, I'm playing a bigger pot out of position, still multiway, and losing the deception value of my hand. That, and, I'm a pussy after being away from the table for 10 weeks.

I played another interesting pot against Zeke, when in a straddled pot with 3 limpers, I made it $25 from the button with AsJs. Zeke called from the BB, as did Frank and Ben.

The flop came A-Q-8, with the Q-8 of hearts. They checked to me, and I bet $100. Zeke called quickly. I had $300 left, and he had about the same.

The turn was an offsuit 5, and before it hit the table, I was looking at Zeke, asking him, "Really?" regarding his flop call. "I have the nut flush draw," Zeke replied, as he turned the ace of hearts faceup. He checks.

Hmmm... Zeke is a smart, loose aggressive player. I ask him "Two pair WITH the flush draw? No - that's impossible - you said that before the 5 of clubs came out - you can't have A-5 of hearts...." I'm trying to put together the pieces: if I am beat (two pair) and I move in, I'm getting called... But if he's got the ace and the flush draw, he probably calls me too, in which case I'm making a positive EV pot-sized all-in turn bet. If I check behind Zeke, and he misses his flush, he may not pay me off on the river, but I may be able to catch him betting a worse ace than me, if he thinks he can run me off the hand.

He asks me how much I have left, even though the action's on me, and I count out $325. I ask "What will you do if you miss your flush draw?" "All-in" he replies.

Ok - I push my remaining chips in, and he mucks rather quickly. In reality, if I really believed he'd move in on the river with a bare ace and no flush, I should probably check the turn, but I thought my best option was to move in on the turn with my pot-sized bet. Anyway...

Dave, one of the wildest players in the game, later put a SICK move on Paul, one of the loosest, when, on the river, after check-calling $150 and $300 turn and river bets on an ace-high board, Dave went toward his stack, which was down to $680 or so. Paul interrupted him, "David - save your chips, I don't want your money," as he showed an ace. Dave paused momentarily, shook his head, and pushed his stack out anyway. "The ace doesn't scare me." Now, Dave is probably the loosest, most aggressive (and maniacal) player in the game, but he's also smart.

Paul, a pathological loose caller (and he has top fuckin' pair on a no-straight, no-flush board), mucks. On the way home later, I asked Dave if he had a hand there, and he told me no - I completely believe him.

Oh, if you haven't heard, PokerHost apparently got hacked. I'd be careful playing on any but the most legitimate sites...

Story Here.

until next time,

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