Monday, February 28, 2005

Reno Trip Report

I was in Reno last weekend for a Deltasig Conference. I didn't have any major responsibilities at the conference so I skipped most of the sessions to play poker. We were staying at the Reno Hilton which is where one of the World Poker Tour events is held.

I expected a much nicer poker room, but it was only 6 tables and the highest limit game they ran was 4-8 with $2-$2 reduced blind structure. They also ran a 1-2 No Limit game at night which was a lot a fun. I'll get to that later.

It was also nice that everyone I played with on Friday night, was there on Saturday, and again on Sunday. It's good to have reads on the bad players and know that they are so bad that you do not have to even adjust your normal style because they are not paying attention.

Overall I finished the trip up $260. It was actually $360, but I gave $100 to the Leadership Foundation of the Fraternity.

Here are a few interesting hands from the weekend:

1. I've often found that the 4-5-6 seats at poker tables are the best seats for two reasons. First is it's easier to see the cards. Second it's easier to see everyone else at the table. Including the occasional dummy who doesn't protect his cards next to you. I had an old man on my left who was constantly and unknowingly flashing his cards to me.

I am dealt AK in middle position and raise. The old guy on my left flashes 8-10 and calls. I get a couple more callers so already the pot is getting big. The flop comes Ks, 7s, 8d. There's a bet in front of me and I raise again, and the guy on my left calls. The turn is a blank so I bet and he calls and the guy on my right calls as well. Finally a 4 of spades comes on the river. The guy on my right bets into me. Did he hit the flush? What did the guy on my left have again? 8-10? What suit was it? I couldn't remember. Stupidly I call and the old guy calls as well. I lose to the old guy's flush. Probably my worst play of the weekend.

2. I am dealt AA and raise preflop. Only 2 callers. The flop comes A-A-7 with 2 clubs. He checks and I check. The turn is another club, a Queen I think. This time he checks and I bet hoping he's got a flush draw now. He folds and tell the dealer not to pick up the cards because I have a high hand jackpot. My four aces wins $143 in their high hand deal. Later I am dealt 4 Eights but only win $20 as a very cute girl at my table had won that jackpot about an hour earlier.

3. I am playing the No Limit game and playing very tight. The rest of the table is very loose with lots of bluffing and lots of top pair, medium kickers getting called down by second pairs. If I can get a good hand, I will win a lot of money. I have $200 in front of me, which is basically my profits thus far on the trip. I am dealt JJ in the small blind. 3 callers for $2 and I raise to $10. They all call. The flop is 10-5-6 rainbow. I bet $40. I get two folds and the last guy calls. Now the pot is $120. The turn is a 3. I bet $100. He thinks for a minute and then calls again. I am now a little worried. The last card is an Ace. I only have $50 in front of me left. I wrongly figure that maybe it's better to push it in for the little bit of fold equity I have left. Otherwise he will just bet what I have left and I'll have to call it. He calls and turns over Ace-4 suited. Ugh! First of all, it was a lousy call of my raise preflop. Second he had a longshot straight draw on the flop and an overcard and he calls a pot sized bet? The turn he picks up the straight draw and again makes a bad call because he doesn't have the odds in the pot, or implied because I have almost no money left. I was mad and complained a little but I didn't lose it.

4. Very next hand, I have dug in my pocket for $280. I am on the button and get dealt AA. A couple of callers again and I raise to $10. I'm sure the table thinks I am steaming so I get calls all around. The flop comes out Queen-6-7. The mexican in the 2 seat bets $20. He is a very bad player who will play anything. That can be good and bad. I raise him $40 to $60 and we are heads up. The turn is another 7. He checks and I bet $100. He calls. The river is a blank. He checks. I just check because I don't want to see a set or some other horrible card that beats me. He turns over Queen 6 for Queens and 7's. He had me beat until the 7 paired. So anyway I win a little over 1/2 my money back.

5. A couple of hands later I am dealt KK and win the rest of the money back I lost on the JJ hand. After that I was basically dealt nothing all night. A couple of times I had JJ or 10-10 and raised but someone reraised big and I had to throw it away.

6. I'm not in the hand but I see the largest pot I've ever seen. Two guys get it all in for a $1,300 pot. The board is paired and there are 3 spades up. The first player checked and the second player moved all in with $350. The first player thought hard about it for 5 minutes. I thought to myself that the worst hand I call with in this situation is the Ace high flush. There are 5-6 combinations of full houses, plus 4 of a kind. This idiot calls finally with a pair of Kings so he has a final hand of Kings and 4's. The winner had a King high flush. I don't think he wanted a call.

Another first for my poker playing experience. There was a brief hour of time where I was at a 10 handed table with 3 women playing on it. All good looking women in their 20's. It's exceedingly rare to see a good looking woman playing poker in a casino. It's a miracle when there are 3 at your table. They were ok players, better than most of the men, but they tended to be overly aggressive at the wrong times.

I am thinking of adding some of my huge tax refund to my poker bankroll to see if I can build it up enough to take a stab at the World Series of Poker in June. I figure I will need to move up to 3-6 or 5-10 limit online if I am going to win the money to enter these tournaments. I don't play enough hands to win enough money at the lower levels. I also want to get to 100 20+2 sit n gos before I decide whether I should move up. Stay tuned.


TexTiger said...

I fully understand your frustration in #3...made a similar post on my blog.

As for the WSOP, it's a lot of fun to play in, but if you think that play in #3 was bad, there were thousands more like it at the WSOP last year.


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