Poker Through the Eyes of an Amateur

July 30, 2007

Shark Bites Hurt As Much As You Think They Do

I didn't expect to post anything while I was down here in the Outer Banks on vacation, but it looks like I'm going to have a lot of time for it, since I'm holed up in the beach house on the couch. I expected to see some marine life while down here in the Outer Banks on vacation, to be sure. What I did NOT expect to see were freaking sharks. And I'm not talking about your little teeny nurse sharks either. I'm talking about sand tiger sharks.

I looked them up on the internet, and according to this entry they are considered to be harmless. Well, apparently one of these bastards decided not to play by the rules. So we're out playing around in the ocean, just minding our own business, when all of sudden there is this searing pain in my right leg. I don't think I've ever yelled that loud in my entire life. My immediate thought was that I had been stung by a jellyfish. That thought was quickly proven false when the water around me started to turn red. It was pretty much the most frightening thing that's ever happened to me. I thought I was going to die. My wife started freaking out and yelled for my friend to help get me to shore.

I managed to hobble on to the shore with my friend helping, and the wife ran inside to call for an ambulance. I collapsed on the beach and looked down to see half of my calf muscle hanging off my leg. I'm pretty sure I started going into shock at this point, as I don't remember much between then and the hospital. The resulting injury is not pretty. I've posted a picture of it further down, but it's pretty graphic. If that kind of thing bothers you, you probably don't want to scroll any further. You have been warned.

Did you honestly think I was sitting here making a blog post after getting half of my leg bitten off by a shark? Come on now. Have a good work week everyone! I'll be playing on the beach!

July 27, 2007

Another Interesting Hand: Part 2

You people are horrible about responding to questions, and I know you're reading these because I can see it in my stat counter. Garth was the only one who responded to the post (DC represent!), so he gets the title of Coolest Blogger for the week. WTG, Garthmeister.

I last left off with me having to make a big decision for my tournament life with AdQs on a jack high all diamond board. I ended up folding it. I knew for a fact that this woman had a jack; I did not put her on the set. The reason I folded this hand is because I thought that my ace was dead. If I thought that the ace and queen were both live, I would have pushed with the nut flush draw and two overs. The way she had been playing, I put her squarely on the jackace.

I finally folded, and she flipped over the ace of spades and jack of clubs. I had been correct that my ace was dead. In hindsight, I kind of wish I had taken my chance with the 11 outs there because after the blinds went up, I didn't get crap for hands. I ended up busting when I pushed with AJ and was called by AA. Live poker is rigged.

I will no longer be playing that tournament at the Showboat. I think they changed the structure, as the blinds seemed to go up a lot faster (every 15 mins) than what I remember before. I think it used to be a half hour. There are no antes in the structure, but the blinds still shoot up entirely too fast for my tastes. Can anyone recommend a good tournament to play in Atlantic City in the $100-$200 range?

In other news, I'm heading out of town tomorrow to go the Outer Banks for a week. I can't wait. I haven't had a vacation since Christmas. I will have the laptop with me, but I probably won't be spending a lot of time on it. I might play a tournament or two a couple of nights. We'll have to wait and see. I hope the rest of you have a good week, and until next time, I will see you on the felt.

July 26, 2007

Life Tilt. AGAIN.

So what's put me on tilt this time? Well, it's definitely much worse than some dumbass trying to steal my cable. I've noticed that I tend to swear a good bit in my tilting posts. If that bothers you, don't read on. I get extremely pissed off, and it's either vent it here or beat someone with a lead pipe. If you would like to volunteer for the beating, I will tone the language down.

So, I get home yesterday to a letter from Allstate saying that my insurance policy has been cancelled due to lack of payment. Ummm...what the hell? The check was sent out weeks ago. I called the wife to confirm this, and she did. I checked the counters and behind the couch to make sure it hadn't accidentally fallen somewhere, but that check was most definitely sent.

She called me back a few minutes later to ask if any of the other checks she wrote that day had cleared. I log in to Bank of America only to find that both our phone bill and our mortgage payment had not been cashed either. It looks like either a) someone stole these items with the intent of cashing the checks for themselves, or b) the more likely scenario that the post office completely fucked up and lost three of our bills. I do so love the reliable federal government and the services I pay for with my tax dollars.

I called up Allstate at their 24 hour support line and was able to make our payment via credit card over the phone, but the guy could not guarantee me that my policy would be reinstated. I have to call back in a couple of days to see if it has been renewed or not. He said he was pretty sure that it would be, since we had always been on time in our payments before, so hopefully it won't be an issue. It's a wait and see situation at the moment.

The phone bill we ended up paying online. We would have been doing that in the first place if Cavalier Telephone hadn't all of a sudden started charging its customers to pay their bills online. Seriously, what the hell is that all about? It is actually BETTER for them if we pay online. They don't have to have some minimum wage clerk opening up letters and endorsing checks all day. Fucking idiots. Service based businesses like phone companies and banks are just licenses to steal. They'd charge you a fee for charging you a fee if it wouldn't end up in an infinite loop and crash their systems.

Since these checks are lost, I have to go online to stop payments on them in case some tool tries to steal my money. I go to the stop payment page, and there's a notice buried in three paragraphs of text that says a fee may apply to stop payment requests. I didn't even see that until today when Courtney called and said we were charge NINETY DOLLARS in fees to cancel those checks. Unbelievable. This kind of "business" makes me sick. It's just blantant theft. If this were the old west, the bank owner would be hanging from a tree. But it's not the old west; it's 2007, where businesses are protected by buying off politicians who won't legislate against this kind of shit.

The only bright aspect of this entire situation is that our mortgage payment isn't due until the 1st of August, and we have time to send out another check. Hopefully it will arrive in time, as our mortgage company is like 15 miles away from us in Silver Spring. That is, if the post office can do its job correctly. Who knows if that will happen or not. I won't know until I get a notice saying that they are foreclosing on my house.

July 25, 2007

Another Interesting Hand

This hand occurred this past weekend during a tournament at the Showboat Casino in Atlantic City. I sat and thought about this one for about five minutes before making my decision, but I'd like to see how you all would have handled it. The situation here was a bit different than the one presented before as this was for my tournament life.


Blinds: 300/600; ~12,500 in chips

Table is 6 handed, a couple of people having just busted to a luckbox woman in seat 9. You are in seat 4. The button is now on the luckbox in seat 9, and this is the last hand before the first break.

You are dealt AdQs. Seat three folds. You raise to 1800. It folds to seat 9 who flat calls. The blinds fold. The flop comes down JdXdXd. You lead out for 2,000 with your nut flush draw and two over cards. Luckbox on the button raises to 10,000.

Notes on luckbox player: She is very weak. She limp/called most of her hands, and rarely raised preflop. She did not seem capable of bluffing.

You have two choices here: Do you push and hope to double up here, or do you fold and look for a better spot to double up after the break?

July 23, 2007

An Interesting Hand: Part 2

Last week I posted the details of an interesting hand and asked for input from all of you as to how you would have handled it. Several bloggers weighed in on the hand, with varying opinions. Now you get to see how the hand actually turned out.

The responses I received were evenly divided between folding and calling on my opponent's pot sized river bet. OSU and Hoyazo both felt that I should call here on the river. They both placed my opponent on a pocket overpair here or possibly two overcards with diamonds for the flush. I'm ahead of all of that range except the flush, dictating the call they suggest.

Hoff and an anonymous reader both suggested that I fold on the river here. Both of them were leaning toward my opponent having a flush or a boat, both of which are very possible on this particular board. However, I didn't think this was the case, and I ended up calling my opponent. I'm going to run through my thought process here as to why I called on the river.

The action opens with my opponent min-raising pre-flop. I hadn't seen him do this before, but I also hadn't played a whole lot of hands with him yet. To me, this usually screams a big hand. This player is inviting action by only raising the minimum from UTG+1. My immediate read at this point is QQ-AA and AK. I live to crack those kinds of hands with crap, so I called from the small blind with 5h7h.

The flop came 4d 4c 6d. This is not a very scary board for my opponent. At this point, I know that I am behind, but I have the open ended straight draw for possibly huge implied odds if I hit. I check on the flop because I am almost certain I will be raised if I lead out. My opponent bets $3 into a $5 pot. I'm slightly less than one in three to make my straight, and I'm getting not quite three to one odds to make the call here. Making this call is definitely a "mistake" mathematically, but only slightly so. I feel that my implied odds are good enough to make the call here.

The turn is the 3d, which is both good news and bad news. The good news is that I have made my straight. The bad news is that there is now a flush on the board. If my opponent was playing a suited ace of diamonds, I am now toast. However, given the range I put my opponent on, my straight is ahead here the majority of the time. Since this board is now very scary for most hands, I choose to lead out for $7 into the $8 pot.

This is where my opponent starts to act strange. He chooses to min raise me here on the turn. Now, what hands are going to min raise me here? If you have a boat, why raise here? Wouldn't you rather flat call in position and give me a chance to fire a bigger bet on the river so you can raise there? If you have a flush, why are you just min raising? This will give you no new information if you're looking to see if I have a boat because a boat will most likely not reraise here, choosing instead to put out a large bet on the river. At $100NL, I have found that the min raise on this type of board is sometimes a scared raise. The person is no longer sure if they are ahead, but they want to see if their opponent will fold. Unfortunately for them, raising the minimum is only going to chase off a complete bluff or an extremely weak hand (sometimes not even those) and give decent odds to hands that are still drawing.

I chose to call here to control pot size. It is still possible that I am beat, but I do have a made hand. If I'm going to lose this hand, I'd like to lose the minimum possible. There's no reason to go crazy with a straight on a paired and three-flushed board.

The 7c was dealt on the river, and I'm pretty certain that this card didn't help my opponent. If I'm beat, then I was beat on the turn. I checked here again to control the pot size, and my opponent suddenly decides to represent real strength, making a pot-sized bet of $39. To me, this bet just doesn't mesh with his action during the rest of this hand. Let's take a look at the options.

If you have a made hand with the boat, you're going to want to make some kind of value bet to extract some money from me on the river. There's always the "overbet for value" consideration, but the way this played out, I didn't feel that was the case. If he has a boat, that means he min-raised with 33, 66 or 77 from UTG+1, which makes a little sense, but not much. I doubt very much anyone is raising with 64, 34, or 74 if they decide to play those hands, so throw away the boat as an option here.

The only hand that should really worry me is a flush. It's possible that he min-raised with two diamonds, but that didn't make much sense to me either. Why would he min-raise on the turn with a made flush? Wouldn't he just want to flat call so that I can maintain control of the hand and make a bigger bet on the river, which he can then raise? The flush just doesn't seem to fit either.

The more I thought about it, the more I was certain that he had an overpair to the board, so I made the call. I was pretty sure that he was in the range of QQ-AA and that I had him beat. The chips went in the pot, and the cards were flipped over. My opponent showed down...


That's right, my opponent did have an overpair to the board, but it was not nearly the strength that I believed it was. This guy played his hand horribly from the get-go. As I've stated in Matt's Musings #3, "The only thing min-raising does is slowly build a pot that you will not win." He min-raised with a mediocre starting hand, which invites almost any two cards to come into the hand against him, giving him no information about their holdings.

He lead out on the flop, which is good, but I do not believe his bet amount was correct. He bet $3 into a $5 pot, when he really should have bet the pot or a bit higher. He has an overpair to the board on the flop with 88, a situation that is not likely to improve as the hand goes on. If he had bet $5 or more, I am most definitely folding there.

The min-raise on the turn just didn't make sense for any of the hands that were ahead of me, but now that we've seen what his hole cards were, we know that this guy just didn't make sense period. I made a note on him that he'll min raise middle pairs, but I wouldn't put it past this guy to min-raise with a wide variety of hands. He's definitely someone that I'll need to be cautious of in the future, if only because he's a landmine.

As for the pot-sized bet on the river, it was a valiant attempt to get the pot, but as I explained above, I just didn't feel like it fit with the rest of the hand. I felt like I was ahead, made the call, and it turned out I was right. But seeing the 88 he had made me a little nervous. He could just as easily have had 66 or 77. Why you would min raise preflop with those holdings is beyond me, but apparently that is how this guy plays. I doubt the betting would have been the same if he had made a boat, though, so speculating on that is a bit pointless.

In the end, my read was correct, although my range was off. I think I got pretty lucky here that this guy had the hand he did. The only thing I see myself doing differently is possibly folding the river or maybe folding pre-flop, since I was out of position; I think I played the rest of the hand as well as it could be played.

I hope you found this hand to be interesting. It's definitely a good example of how odd the play can be at $100NL. Good luck to you in your poker efforts, and until next time, I'll see you on the felt.

July 18, 2007

An Interesting Hand

I played this hand last night at a $100NL cash game. I'd like to see how you all would have handled it, as I thought it was pretty interesting. I encourage you to answer the questions in your head as you read the post, so as not to let future action dictate your decisions.


Seat 1: samoraee ($90.75)
Seat 2: fiyaman01 ($21.90)
Seat 3: Tufro ($101.35)
Seat 4: billy ho 1 ($33.50)
Seat 5: Suter15 ($85.55)
Seat 6: Hero ($141.60)
Seat 7: AO1715 ($120.35)
Seat 8: nique03 ($81.70), is sitting out
Seat 9: midnight234 ($89.10)
Hero posts the small blind of $0.50
AO1715 posts the big blind of $1
The button is in seat #5
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to Hero [5h 7h]
midnight234 folds
samoraee raises to $2
fiyaman01 folds
Tufro folds
billy ho 1 folds
Suter15 folds
Hero calls $1.50
AO1715 folds
*** FLOP *** [4d 4c 6d]

So the guy chooses to min raise pre-flop. Usually at this limit, this kind of play indicates one of two things: the guy is a bad player, or the guy has a monster hand. I hadn't played many hands with this guy so I couldn't be sure. Either way, I felt both my implied and actual odds were good enough for the call preflop, even though I am out of position. The flop gives me an OESD and has two diamonds.

Question 1: What is your play here? Do you check or do you bet?

Hero checks
samoraee bets $3

My opponent continues by betting $3 into a $5 pot.

Question 2: What is your play here? Do you call, raise, or fold?

Hero calls $3

I decided to call here since almost any pokertard would bet at that board when checked to. I decided to float and either try to steal the pot when a diamond comes or hope to make my straight.

*** TURN *** [4d 4c 6d] [3d]

I've made my straight on the turn, but it has also completed the flush.

Question 3: Do you lead out at this board? It is paired, and there are three to a flush. However, your opponent hasn't really shown any true strength yet.

Hero bets $7

Personally, I think this is the perfect kind of board to bet on. There are a lot of hands that utterly destroy my opponent's range, and I have a made hand myself.

samoraee raises to $14

A min raise? That seems very odd for how this hand has played out thus far.

Question 4: What do you do now? Do you call, re-raise, or fold?

Hero calls $7

I called here because the min raise just didn't smell right. If you have a great hand here, wouldn't you just call and give your opponent the opportunity to continue firing into you on the river? I just didn't feel like I was beat here, so I called.

*** RIVER *** [4d 4c 6d 3d] [7c]
Hero checks
samoraee bets $39

I checked the river with the feeling that he would most likely give up on this hand. However, our friend finally decides to show some strength and fires a pot sized bet off.

Question 5: What is your move now? Do you call, reraise, or fold? What kind of hands do you place my opponent on?

July 16, 2007

Someone Get Me Off This Thing

I like thrills. I like to ride on all of the crazy rollercoasters and other rides at amusement parks. I even helped run the Skycoaster at Carowinds for a couple of summers when I was a teenager. These rides can make you feel like you're flying, falling, and zooming all over the place. Rollercoasters are fun!

Rollercoasters with your bankroll are NOT.

I have had the most crazy past few days at the cash game tables. I've been having 10%-20% swings on an almost daily basis for the past week or so. Luckily, I have ended the swings on the top end. I took a day off from the cash tables yesterday to catch my breath. I had all kinds of crazy situations come up over the past week.

I got three-outered and then four-outered two hands in a row for about 10% of my bankroll. All money went in on the turn both times. I ran AA into a baby set. I ran a flopped top two pair in the SB into the BB's flopped straight. I ran KK into AA.

But I also had some good hands. I flopped the nut straight against a guy who flopped the nut flush draw and got him to commit all of his chips on the turn. (It probably helped that he was 8-tabling). I had KK vs QQ, and it HELD UP! I flopped the nut straight with 6d8d on the button against two opponents. All the money goes in on the turn, and one guys flips a set while the other flips top pair and nut flush draw. The straight held, and I took a $300+ pot.

To be honest, these swings have left me pretty drained. I couldn't bring myself to sit down at the cash games yesterday (even though it was the weekend), but I knew I was not in the right frame of mind, so I just played a small $5 Limit Omaha Hi/Lo game for a change of pace and stability bankroll wise. I think I played pretty well, but a lot of my opponents were just plain awful, and I got kicked in the nuts several times. I didn't really care, since it was only a $5 game; it was pretty amusing to watch, actually.

This led me to post Matt's Musing #4 which is below. It's common sense, mathmatically, but I do still find it somewhat amusing.

Well, that's about all I got for today. The wife is out of town for the week at a conference in Colorado, so hopefully I will be trying my hand at some donkaments this week. I'm going to try and satellite into the 50/50 and also get some tokens for some of the nightly guarantees. See you on the felt!

Matt's Musings #4

The probability of getting kicked in the junk is directly proportional to the number of cards in your opponent's hand.

Hold'em: Happens fairly regularly. We'll say one in four, although I know that some people are going to say that's way too low.

Omaha: It's a coin flip as to whether or not you will get kicked in the junk.

Stud/Razz: Only play these if you are a masochist. See: Razz King

July 09, 2007

Re-Breaking The $1k Barrier And Low Limit Cash Game Tips

If you ever want to see how much you've improved as a poker player, drop your bankroll to what it was when you started and see how long it takes you to get back to where you currently are compared to how long it took the first time. When the UIGEA passed, I immediately withdrew almost all of my poker funds to see how it was going to pan out. This helped me avoid getting any money stuck anywhere. It also killed my bankroll.

Around the beginning of this year, I started playing with the $60 or so that I had left on Absolute Poker and began to build the bankroll back up. I broke the $1k barrier this weekend by taking a couple of shots at $100NL since all of the fish are out in force on the weekends. My hands held up, and I was able to build my bankroll past $1k in about 6 months, as opposed to the almost two years it took to build it the first time around.

Granted, I was a complete moron for the first six months of those two years. I don't think I even picked up a book during that time; I just kept playing what I thought was correct poker. I have a minor in math, so I was probably less fishy than most, but my play was still awful. This time around it was a lot different. It went faster, but it was also harder.

I think I felt a little what Chris Ferguson must feel like during his $10k bankroll experiment. It's really hard to drop back down to the very micro limits and take it seriously when you have been used to playing higher limits. Playing $.05/$.10 NL was excrutiating, as was playing in the $1 45-player SNGs. I can only imagine how it must feel to go from the biggest limits back down to that level. I applaud Chris for his ability to focus and carry on with his experiment. It must be pretty brutal at times. You can read about his experiment here.

One thing I noticed this time around is that the players are not as horrible as they used to be. I think the UIGEA has something to do with that, but I also think it's pretty obvious that I haven't been the only one reading poker books. Almost everyone will make continuation bets now, and most people are able to make bet sizes to price out draws. I've had to change my game up some, and all of these moves are familiar to those of you who play higher limits. But maybe some blogger somewhere will get a little help from the following tips. Here are some of the ways I've opened up my game recently that have been very successful at $100NL, $50NL, and below.


Raising The Continuation Bet

As I stated above, a lot of people will now fire a continuation bet at the flop if they have raised pre-flop. I've started paying very close attention to who these people are, and I will intermittently reraise these continuation bets on non-scary boards with position on the player. Many of these players have been taught through their various poker books to make a continuation bet even if they miss the flop if they were the initial raiser. However, most of these players do not know how to handle the situation if you play back at them, and most will fold when they've missed. Stealing continuation bets can help you chip up your stack in between big hands.


This is kind of a variation on the above play, in that instead of raising on the flop, you simply call (float) to see what your opponent will do on the turn. This play generally works best, I think, when there is only one broadway card on the board, as your opponent is less likely to have hit it. If your opponent was making his standard continuation bet after missing the flop, he will most likely check on the turn when his hand does not improve. This leaves the door open for you to come in and take the pot out from under him. A lot of players can get to the continuation bet aspect of the hand, but are then completely lost when they don't make a very strong hand. They can't bring themselves to fire the second bullet with a marginal hand, and you can get a lot of middle pairs to fold to a bet here when they are scared of the overcard on the board.

Raising On The Come

I've been doing this for a while, but I think it's a pretty important move at the lower limits. If I'm in position against a player that I perceive as weak, I will often raise a continuation bet with drawing hands. If I'm reraised, I will have a decision to make, but more often than not at the level I'm playing ($100NL and below), the original raiser will call and then check on the turn if they do not improve (which is more often than not). This allows me to take the river card for free if I don't hit my draw on the turn. This also disguises your draw when it does hit on the turn, allowing you to get more money from your opponent on the river.

Playing Drawing Boards With Air

This play is definitely very situation-dependent, and you should only make it when you know that your opponent is capable of folding. I will also only make this move if I feel that I have a looser image at the table. When these conditions are met, I will occasionally play draw-heavy boards when I am heads up and have position on my opponent even when I do not have the cards to make the draw. When I do this, I consider my outs to be the cards that improve my actual hand to be better than what I think my opponent has as well as the cards that complete the draws. If you know that your opponent is capable of folding, you can bet/raise him out of hands where the draws complete on the board. This move is by nature a very loose-aggressive play, and thus very volatile. It can lead to some pretty big downswings when it doesn't work, but it can also help you chip up nicely. I use it very sparingly. One place I like to use it is when I plan on switching gears and can show the bluff to induce action later on.


These plays are all very common at higher limits and have probably been described a lot better elsewhere, but hopefully some of the other lower limit bloggers who visit mine occasionally will find a nugget or two of useful information. These aspects of the game continue to be very profitable for me at $100NL and below. Just be aware that there are players that will pick up on these plays even at these levels, so you need to pick your victims with care. As has been said in every poker blog/book ever written about cash games, table selection is extremely important. Find the weaker players, and show them how the game is played.

Until next post, I'll see you on the felt.

July 05, 2007

LOL Donkaments

It is late in a $10+$1 MTT. We are in the money. I have been playing very tight.

Seriously, what the hell is this?

Full Tilt Poker Game #2862054875: $10 + $1 Tournament (21331294), Table 8 - 300/600 Ante 75 - No Limit Hold'em - 21:30:59 ET - 2007/07/05
Seat 1: dussault969 (45,791)
Seat 2: kaellinn18 (19,360)
Seat 3: TeamBlissX4 (19,050)
Seat 4: Flop Ninja (29,204)
Seat 5: Otis_GW (13,009)
Seat 7: Magickson (27,935)
Seat 8: CrazyEdy (32,565)
dussault969 antes 75
kaellinn18 antes 75
TeamBlissX4 antes 75
Flop Ninja antes 75
Otis_GW antes 75
Magickson antes 75
CrazyEdy antes 75
dussault969 posts the small blind of 300
kaellinn18 posts the big blind of 600
The button is in seat #8
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to kaellinn18 [3h 3s]
TeamBlissX4 folds
Flop Ninja has 15 seconds left to act
Flop Ninja folds
Otis_GW folds
Magickson folds
CrazyEdy raises to 2,625
dussault969 folds
kaellinn18 raises to 6,000
CrazyEdy calls 3,375
*** FLOP *** [Qc 7h 4s]
kaellinn18 has 15 seconds left to act
kaellinn18 bets 8,500
CrazyEdy raises to 26,490, and is all in
kaellinn18 calls 4,785, and is all in
CrazyEdy shows [Th 7s]
kaellinn18 shows [3h 3s]
Uncalled bet of 13,205 returned to CrazyEdy
*** TURN *** [Qc 7h 4s] [5c]
dirty_wally sits down
dirty_wally adds 11,165
napaldv sits down
napaldv adds 4,786
*** RIVER *** [Qc 7h 4s 5c] [Ts]
CrazyEdy shows two pair, Tens and Sevens
kaellinn18 shows a pair of Threes
CrazyEdy wins the pot (39,395) with two pair, Tens and Sevens
kaellinn18: wow
kaellinn18 stands up
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 39,395 | Rake 0
Board: [Qc 7h 4s 5c Ts]
Seat 1: dussault969 (small blind) folded before the Flop
Seat 2: kaellinn18 (big blind) showed [3h 3s] and lost with a pair of Threes
Seat 3: TeamBlissX4 folded before the Flop
Seat 4: Flop Ninja folded before the Flop
Seat 5: Otis_GW folded before the Flop
Seat 7: Magickson folded before the Flop
Seat 8: CrazyEdy (button) showed [Th 7s] and won (39,395) with two pair, Tens and Sevens

July 02, 2007

Final BBT Standings

I ended up finishing in 43rd in the final leaderboard of the BBT. I was a bit disappointed with the turnout for the final BBT event, which was Don's Big Game; I thought there would be way more people than the 45 that showed up. Oh well. At least I'm freerolling into the rakeback game.

I started out in the Big Game pretty well last night. I ended up chipping up by 1000 when I managed to make Columbo think that I had merely made a continuation bet on a very non-scary board and check-raised him on an equally non-scary turn when I held KK. Unfortunately, this was not to last as QQ would be my undoing for the night.

The first time I had QQ, I raised 5x from the big blind after Columbo and another player had limped in. Only Columbo called, and the flop was ten high, double suited in hearts. I made my standard continuation bet, and Columbo raised all in with a (relatively) short stack. It amounted to 4x my bet and 1/3 of my total stack. This wasn't long after I had check-raised him out of the pot with my KK, so I thought he may have either been stealing back some chips or semi-bluffing here. I put him on either AT or a flush draw with two overs. Unfortunately, he flipped over TT when I called. I really didn't put him on that hand or a higher pocket pair, as I figured him for the type of person who would raise those hands pre-flop from middle position, as opposed to the limp-call.

The second time I got QQ, I was on the short stack, although not desperate. I raised it 3x from the hijack, and BB calls. The flop is 889 with two clubs. BB puts me all in, and I pretty much have to call here. He had flopped an open-ended straight flush draw with TJc. Now, I held the Qc, so I still had a pretty decent shot here. The numbers come out to me being a 62% favorite to take this down. However, the 7c came on the turn, and I was drawing dead.

Stupid pocket queens. Such is the game.

Anyway, I'm very pleased with my final BBT standings, considering I only played in 12 events of 39. I didn't know this was even going on until two thirds of the season was over because I had been very remiss in reading blogs and even posting on my own. But I ended up making the points in 10 out of 12, final tabling 2 out of 12, and cashing in 2 out of 12. That gives me a final table percentage and ITM percentage of 16%, which I don't think is bad with this crowd, and an ITP (points) percentage of 83%, which I think is pretty good. Hopefully they will do this again sometime, and I can get in on the ground floor. I would like to see how I would finish if I were able to play in all of the events.