Monday, June 12, 2006

Guys Night Out

I did not make it to Vegas last weekend because I couldn't get anyone else to go with me. So instead I got Rob, Carlo, and Jon to go out to dinner Saturday night and then to Casino Arizona for a long night of poker.

We finally arrived around 8:00 PM and I was immediately seated in a 4-8 game. My very first hand I was dealt 2 black Kings. I raise and get two callers. The flop has an Ace. The player on my right leads out. I glance at the other opponent on my left. He looks ready to call. I muck it. Good read on my part, since when the hand was over, the both had an Ace.

The rest of the night followed the same script in that I just could not get a hand to hold up. I had lots of good starting hands this time, but never flopped anything good.

I stayed until 2:30 AM and left down $244. What a crappy run I have had at Casino AZ.

I thought I would sleep in on Sunday and be sick of poker. Unfortunately, the dogs decided to wake me up at 6:00 AM and I couldn't get back to sleep. Surprisingly I actually felt like playing poker again.

I played a satellite on Full Tilt and lost. I also lost some money in the ring no limit games again. After an afternoon nap, I logged on to Party for the 3:00 PM $55 satellite. Once again I qualified for the 6:00 PM satellite to the Main Event. I am continually surprised how easy it is to qualify in these small satellites. I am currently 4 for 8 in qualifying for the $215 tournament. This doesn't include the one tournament where my internet service went out in the middle of it and I had to call Rob and have him log on for me and coach him over the phone. On that one, I finished two spots away from qualifying but I did win $36 back.

Amazingly I am currently ahead by $1,067 in my attempts to qualify. My original plans were to spend about $3,000 trying to qualify. I may luck out and not have to spend all of my account.

After qualifying for the 6:00 PM tournament, I spent some time psyching myself up and telling myself that this was the tournament to win. When I logged on, I was surprised to learn that there would be 12 whole seats awarded in this tournament! That means there were over 600 players in this shin dig. This looks like a really good chance.

10 hands into the tournament, I busted out. Yay me!

Here's the hand:
Blinds are 20-40.
I have 2940 chips on the button with Qs Ts. One limper and I limp. The Small Blind raises to 180. The limper calls and I call. There is 580 in the pot.

Flop: 7h, Qc, Tc

Now I am trying to figure out how to double up. The Small Blind raiser bets 533 and the first limper folds. Because of the amount of the preflop raise and the position of the raisier I am putting him on a good hand. Probably AA, KK, AQ, maybe QQ. I think the size of the flop bet tells me it's probably AQ, AA, or KK. If he hit trips, he would probably bet less or even check. Maybe he has Ac Kc and is pushing a flush and straight draw.

Here's where I stand depending on my opponent's holdings:
Opponent's hand Odds
AA 73% favorite
KK 71% favorite
QQ practically drawing dead
AQ 84% favorite
AcKc 55% favorite
AcKs 77% favorite

So I decide to just raise 2x his bet to 1066. So my opponent has to call 533 into a pot of of 2179.

Now that I know the odds, I obviously should have raised more. Probably just all in. There's a good chance that he calls with some of these hands.

He calls the 533.

The turn is an Ace of hearts. So no flush yet, but it does put a straight on the board. My opponent puts me all in for 1694, leaving him with just 1100 in chips. Uh oh.

Now my chances do not look so good since if he has AQ, QQ, or AA I am beat. The only realistic hand I am ahead of is pocket Kings and the Ace probably would have scared him. Unfortunately I did not have the time to figure all this out and I call.

Luckily he only had Ac Ks so I was still a 73% favorite. But the Ace came on the river and I lost to trip Aces.

So for future reference, if I have two pair and I think my opponent might have an over pair, it's better to raise all in or at least 3-4 times my opponent's initial bet. I am a favorite, but I can lose if the board pairs or something comes runner, runner. I am not enough of a favorite to slow play.

God Damn this game can be cruel.

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