Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Strange Lines at Ridgemont High

Yesterday I played a 6 hour session at Bay 101 (I also played 6/12 for 45 minutes, but basically just missed two flush draws, won a small pot with TPTK and lost 50 bucks).

The session started off....poorly. Within 2 hours I was stuck more than two racks and had to employ the Phil Helmuth Chip Mess Strategy (I can't find the youtube clip, but in one WSOP event Phil Helmuth refused to stack his chips and just played with them in a pile in front of him for about 30 minutes until some guy finally complained enough. I do this sometimes at the table so I can't know how much I'm stuck). After my 2nd table change (all the games are bad, and two known 2p2 regulars just sat down at one table) I actually purchase a 4th rack and ask the guy "wait, let me do it" and just dump the whole thing on top of my pile (I buy two racks to start, then buy in 1 rack increments).

Sadly, even the chip mess cannot save me. I have such gems as:

K8s in the big blind. I get 5 bets in on the flop against one guy who is suicide all-inning (he is out of chips). The board, coincidentally, contains a King, and two unrelated lower cards. Turn is also of no use, my opponent then cries "Deuce!" while already out of his chair, the dealer obliges, puts out a red 2, and my opponent rolls K2s to win the pot.


I have AA and of course raise. Like 4 people take the flop and I am eventually rivered when the board pairs the 7 and somebody shows me T7s which she limped UTG.

In general I just am missing flops and losing bets, etc etc. Finally one game looks good and I table change to it like a Ninja. I am in for the change on the board, but the floor-lady is going to not call me until after I post my big blind, which is bad (you have to post at the new table, so posting twice in a row is very bad from a "math" and "expectation" point of view). I ask her if I can move, she says yes, I go and post in behind the button while 2/3rds of my chips are still on the other table. Before I can finish moving all my chips I almost felt a woman with AK ui (Ace King Unimproved). She has 78 pair no draw, with which she put in 40 bucks on the turn. I skedaddle back to my table and grab some more chips, but when I return find A4 both clubs and two limpers already in the pot. I call, two more calls, and away we go to a flop of:

QJ3 (all clubs).

I attempt to remain calm and pray to the Action Gods for...well, what else? Action. One of the blinds bets out and I decide this is a good sign. I simply call the bet (a raise here will fold out hands that might call, but a flat call might get someone else to raise) and am happy to see the button raise. The blind now 3-bets. Again I call. The button caps it. I call once more. Do realize here that I hold the best possible hand.

Turn brings and off-suite 6, and I still have the absolute stone cold nuts. The blind bets again, and for the 4th time I simply call. The button raises, and then I realize (bah!) that the blind is now all in for only 5 more chips. It's go time baby! I 3-bet. The button raises again. I am completely bewildered, as my line screams "I HAVE THE NUTS RIGHT HERE! THE NUTS! YOU CAN'T WIN!!!!" The dealer says "cap it" and I am confused; the betting cap usually goes away when two players are heads up (as either one could simply opt to call and not raise again) and ask "there's a cap heads up?" and am informed that since the round started with a 3rd player involved there is still a cap. Oops, just cost myself 40 bucks.

Turn brings a red card that does not pair the board. I now donk bet (you can't very well check/raise the river when you just asked if you could put in a 5th bet on 4th street), the button looks confused and calls only. I drag the monster pot. Button claims he had a straight flush draw, and the blind shows K5 for the second nut flush. I am thrilled. My line for the hand is:

Call, Call, Call
Call, 3-bet, Call

And then this two hand sequence occurs:

Hand 1:

Fred, a guy I think plays full time or at the very least plays a ton of mid stakes hold 'em, open raises on the button. I 3-bet pocket 4s in the small blind because if you're going to play there, you have to 3-bet to force out the big blind and take control of the action. I can do this with a hand as weak as pocket 4s because Fred's range is very, very wide (I would raise in his position with probably 40% of all hands). The flop is:

A89 (two hearts)

I bet and Fred calls.

Turn is a 2

I bet and Fred calls again.

At this point I'm almost positive Fred has a heart draw of some sort. He could have a pair, but almost certainly not an Ace because he'd have raised at some point along the way.

The river pairs the 8 and I decide to check and hope Fred will stab at the pot (so I can call and hopefully collect 40 more dollars). Fred declines, and I say "Pair" and table my 44. He shakes his head like he can't understand how I could put in that much action with a pair of fours and mucks his hand.

1 orbit later

A new player at the table raises UTG. It folds to Fred in the small blind, and he hems, haws, hems some more, then eventually calls. I look at my cards, find T7 off and say "Fred, look what you just made me do", clearly referencing the hand where I 3-bet pocket 4s, and call getting 5:1 closing the action to see 3 cards.

AT6 is the flop.

Fred and I check, UTG dutifully bets (he'd bet 100% of his range here...or should) and Fred...calls. I say "Fred, you're making me do it again!" and I call.


Yahtzee. Fred checks, I check, UTG is not an idiot and can read hands so he checks. Damn it.


That's fine I say, my hand is still the nuts. UTG may not be an idiot, but he'd have to have bet an Ace on the turn, so my full house is good.

Fred Donks! I can't believe it and simply call. UTG turbo-mucks his cards and Fred shakes his head and says "you win, you win" and I don't table my hand (he has to act first since I called him...he must either table his hand or muck). He tables black 9s for a final hand of...Ace and Tens with a 9 kicker. I show my ten and again he shakes his head. My opinion of Fred has dropped substantially in this hand. Again to recap my line, it was:


Final result for the day was a loss of about 75 dollars, as I managed to fight my way all the way back to down 25 bucks at live 20/40. Yesterday's total was actually a win of 355. I've played a lot of hours the last two days to win 280 dollars, but sometimes that happens.

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