Monday, September 01, 2008

One Skill Improves while Other Diminishes

My poker game is over taking my golf game. I made a recent post that I had lowered my golf index to 6.6 Since that happened I have shot 82, 87, and a 90 today. I don't think my game is that far off. I seem to be driving it pretty well, but my short game has been real suspect. To use a poker term, I am not running good. If there is a bad lie to be found, my ball finds it lately.

On the poker front, my bankroll has climbed above $3,000 again. That's not bad since a year ago I was at $500. Of course I could have kept the Main Event entry and been at $12,000 but what fun would that have been.

My bankroll has been increasing in spite of my inability to beat the worst 3-6 and 4-8 limit games at Casino Arizona. It is so frustrating to see such horrible play and not be able to capitalize.

On Saturday night, Rob was supposed to buy me the dinner he owes me from our Main Event bet. He flaked on the dinner, but we did meet up at the casino. I started at a juicy 4-8 Hold'em game at 7:30 PM. By 9:00 I was $200 and my tilt meter was rising.

I tried to make one strategic move by changing my seat to directly to the right of a novice player who was playing every hand. My plan was to raise the top half of my playable hand range every time he limped in trying to isolate him from the other players. Of course isolation is a tough road to hoe when raises are not given much respect and there are still 4-5 players in every pot. I can't say my plan failed because I did not lose any money. But it wasn't successful either. Eventually I won back $100 and moved to Rob's table at the 3-6 level.

This table was also horrible, but I just could not get the cards at the right time. I stayed right around $100 down when finally after 5 1/2 hours I picked up what I figured was going to be the hand to get me back to the plus side.

I pick up QQ on the button. There are a couple of early limpers and I raise. The small blind calls, but the BB (who was a bit wild and crazy) reraises, and then the limper under the gun caps! I call and the small blind calls three more cold so the pot is 4 way and capped. By the way did I mention this was a kill pot? Oh yeah so that means there is $96 in the pot before the flop.

The flop is 3h-4h-7d. I like it and figure my hand is probably good. The small blind leads out for $6, the crazy BB raises to $12, and under the gun player, makes it $18! Now the books might say that it's still worth calling because the pot is sooooo big. But I know I am calling $24 because it will be capped, and it's possible I am drawing dead or to just 2 outs. I fold and cry on the inside.

Eventually the monster pot makes it to the river and the small blind had dropped out. The crazy big blind had reraised me with Ah-7h. The under the gun player had 5h-6h for a flopped straight and an open ended straight flush draw. The crazy BB won the hand when a Kh hit the river to give him the Ace high flush.

I won the next hand with top pair, King kicker to win back the money I lost on the previous hand. By then it was 1:30 AM and I was tired. I racked up my chips while there was another crazy pot happening. I muttered something to my neighbor about "Why am I leaving this game?" and he chastised me for doing it. I am a pussy and I like my sleep. I guess that's all I can say.

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