Friday, June 30, 2006

Stop'N'Go stopped cold

I started the new NL HE MTT bar league last night....Made it to the final table AGAIN. 4 out of 5 times I've played I made the final table....3 out of 5 times I've cashed. Even though I didn't make the money this time I made some very valuable League leader points. After 12 weeks the top ten play a NL STT and the prize is about 1200-1400. I'm going to make a serious effort to make every week this time. Last time I only made 4 out of 12 weeks.
I got some chips right before the break...dealt Qs-Qh under the gun...I raised 4 times the BB and some dude puts me all in. The others fold...he has As-Qx...oops. He didn't improve and I started my latest quest for the final table. I had quite a stack after a few blind steals at the final table. I made another mistake by making a few loose calls...somebody either raised big or went all-in. I didn't have enough to call most of them. I just have to remember the pump it or dump it mentality. The small blind pushed beside me and I called with Ad-Qd...he had 7x-7x...I catch a queen. Queens have been good to me so far. Down to 9 at the table...I make another loose call and pay for it bad. I think I had about 4500 left. I figure instead of pushing to steal the blinds I'll try something different. Another guy got knocked out with his pocket 7's by someone with an ace. He was the points leader from the last league.
A couple of hands pass and I'm on the button. I raised to 2500...the blinds were 600SB-1200BB at the time. I figured that the blinds would think I was just pushing with any two and would call anyway. I raised with the intention of pushing no matter what the flop was. I had Qx-8x and the guy that paid me off earlier in the tournament when I pushed with pocket Q's called the from the BB. Much to my chagrin I didn't hit anything on the flop (9x-7x-3x)but I pushed my last 2000 anyway (Raymer's Stop'N'Go technique I believe)..he calls my push with 9x and something else...I was dealing at the time and I didn't deal myself anything on the turn or the river..oh well. I think that I've been mixing up my bets, raised, calls etc. enough to confuse anybody. The results are hard to argue with. I think that guy called my Stop'N'Go steal because he was still steaming from the earlier beat. That's OK....keep calling in the time I'll have the Nuts!

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Gamboooling at Foxwoods

Last week:
  1. Kid got a cold…sleep is all messed up for her and both of us.

  2. Had anniversary with wife (3rd) last Saturday…asked what she wanted to do…”Lets go to Foxwoods” she says,…”OK!” says I… the mother-in-law babysat overnight for the first time ever.

  3. Couldn’t play the WPBT Razz event (‘lucko21’ won again? Me thinks he is seriously on top of his game right now!) due to my late night poker haunt at Foxwoods the night before.

  4. Haven’t deposited any money online and haven’t really played online for a couple of weeks for anything substantial. Not really missing it since I failed to qualify for the WSOP.

This week:
  1. The new NL Hold’em bar league starts this week and I’m ready to make a serious run at making it every Thursday. I found out the payoff for the top ten in the league is a huge prize pooled STT!

  2. Catch up on sleep.

  3. Lament the fact I am not going to the WPBT Summer Classic or the WSOP.

After dinner I went to hang out with the wife at the slot machines…I pop 20.00 in the machine next to her and after 4-5 spins I win 56.00. Not bad for 5 minutes. I cashed out the ticket and proceeded to make my way towards the new poker room. But before I got there I stopped at a roulette table. I usually don’t play house edge games but I couldn’t resist putting the 50.00 I just won on a high percentage bet. I put all 50.00 on Black and a Black number falls. I double up to 100.00 in a matter of a half hour on –EV games…gotta love that. The table spinner or croupier or whatever the fuck they are called was ignoring me….”take the 100.00 down and give it to me please”….nothing…she ignores me. I started to yell at her because she was going to spin the wheel and the pit boss came running over. “What’s going on?” he asks…I said “She won’t take the 100.00 on black….I want to take it and leave”….he gets her to take it down and give it to me…she looks at me like I was taking her first-born child! I don’t need the fucking attitude bitch! Just gimme my money….I thought. It’s about 9:30 PM now and time for me to check the new poker room out.

I like the new poker room at Foxwoods…but there is one really bad factor. There is nowhere to get a drink (alcohol) in the new poker room! That really sucks for someone who likes to get a few while waiting a half hour. There is a cafeteria setup for food and non-alcoholic beverages…but who cares. The old poker room upstairs (now a virtual sea of slot machines) had a large sports bar/horse betting area right next to the poker room. A place where you can get a drink…. wait for your name to be announced or to appear on the board.  After waiting about a half hour I was seated at the 1-2 NL table and all was good. I saw a new poker table with an automatic shuffler for the dealer….pretty cool. I also saw a nice cupholder built in to the table….OK…bring me a drink! What? Where is the waitress? Whaddaya mean she hasn’t been here for a half hour? WTF! I forget about that for a while and the table fills with players….loose…aggressive….fun…players.  That new card shuffler sure does a good job of shuffling….I didn’t get a great hand for at least an hour…I swear. I take a couple of pots but I really didn’t get any hands at all. After about two hours I get my favorite hand…two red kings. I didn’t know it but some kid on the other side of the table had pocket Aces. I led out under the gun with a 15.00 bet. Everybody folds and he just calls. It’s me and him in a pot… (Ax-2d-5d) falls. Shit! Damn ace I thought…I led out with a 10.00 bet…he raises to 30.00. I figured he must have an ace to call a 15.00 bet cold pre-flop. Sure enough I fold and he shows his set of aces…the only time in 2.5 hours I get a real hand and someone gets pocket rockets. His bet kept me from sneaking into a diamond flush draw….sometimes you just have to let go.
When the damn waitress finally starts to serve some drinks after much complaint from the table the fun started. I tip every time I’m at Foxwoods for every single drink but they don’t have enough waitresses…it’s really fucking annoying. Anyway, after another hour the table starts to get loud and the gambling really got loose. I was up and down all night….but damn I had a good time. It’s the first time I had to rebuy more than once at the 1-2 NL tables and the first time I walked away without at least +100.00 more than I went with. I left at probably -50.00….also a first. I still had a good time and thought I played well for the small amount of good hands that were dealt. There were a few people from Massachusetts so we had some good natured trash talk going on. I guess I was just in the mood to gambooool!

I jumped onto a 15.00 BlackJack (lucky sevens) table while waiting for the wife to get ready to go home (You can’t find anything less than a 25.00 table until Sunday morning now that everybody in the world apparently has money to burn).  I was quickly down from 150.00 to 29.00! ( I tried a couple of those ‘sucker bet’ 1.00 dollar antes for the 7’s…It actually worked for me last year when I attempted to card count and I hit the 3-7’s for 500.00) I put 25.00 down and announced “Well that was fun!”….BlackJack! I went on a run and soon my chip stack was up to 225.00. The guy next to me looked at me like I had two heads. “Nice comeback”….he said. I only made one mistake…and the dealer would have busted! Every time I do that I get yelled at by an Asian lady. Somehow I tank one hand a round and then the crazy Asian lady at the table start in on me. I was made aware by someone why the mistake I made was pretty bad but I always get yelled at by the Asian lady (my last three times at Foxwoods) who’s been there for 24 hours straight and is on some sort of gambling addiction rush. OK…so I made a mistake…Fuck off!

All in all….I still ended the weekend down 50.00 but I had fun.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Fathers Day...Couldn't play

I tried to get back in time for the PokerStars WBC tourney but much to my chagrin I was blinded out at 999. I had a great time though...I was at my brother-in-laws Country Club pool. They served beer so I was happy. It was like a giant pool party and you couldn't step anywhere without a rugrat...including my own daughter. She already loves the water. This should be a fun summer...I didn't go to the beach last year for the first time in my life. We'll see if she likes the ocean as much as the pool when I go on vacation in August.

I guess my quest for the WSOP is nearing an abrupt end. No Vegas and No WSOP make Dave a dull boy. The closest I came was making the final table of the WPBT NL Sat. I got knocked out eighth or something like that. My play with TPTK killed me. I'll just have to start up the new poker league in a couple of Thursdays at the local bar and continue my slaughter of the bar pigeons.

However, I am going to Foxwoods this Saturday. It's our third anniversary. I asked my wife "where or what do you want to go/do?"......"Let's go to Foxwoods!"....That's all I needed to hear. So by the time 8:00PM rolls around I'll be lurking in the newly configured Poker room. I'll try to qualify for the World Poker Finals...Yeah that's it...Someday....

Friday, June 16, 2006

Rock and Roll Over (everybody at the table)

4 Thursdays at the bar….3 final tables (cashed). I can only wish to cash 75% of my 40.00 buy-in tourneys online…..

This is a Tight-Aggressive players dream. The bar tournament league is just awesome. I’m riding a high in the local “live” tournaments lately. Last night I won the whole tournament and at 1:00AM was forced to chop the winnings with the other guy. I had more chips so I get 450.00…He gets 400.00.  He is actually the best player in the league….out front by a huge amount and qualifies for their 10 person STT for 1500.00 first prize. I guess the top ten in the league auto-qualify….if I played more than 4 out of the 12 weeks I would probably be there too! I just can’t commit to every Thursday night…BUT…there is anther league starting in two weeks and I am going to make a run. The bar “Slickeys” will probably be my saving grace if they “Legislators” decide to enforce a ban on online gambling. BTW…did everybody send in the pre-made forms to there Congressmen and Representatives? Do it now…there is power in numbers.  Although there is more important things in the world…this is a basic right that we should fight to keep.

I was playing very tight for the first two hours…limping into a pot here or there. Then I started to limp in with small to medium pairs. Three flopped ‘sets’ in a span of about one and a half orbits gave me the momentum. I started to accumulate some chips before the and after the first break. I soon started to steal the blinds and throw out a couple of pure bluffs….most all of them worked. Last tournament at about the same time frame I started to accumulate a stack. But last time I was lucky…this time I felt I could bluff someone off of a hand. I decided to go all-in when I was the SB (with A-6o) and the BB called me! He had me covered too!
Much to his chagrin I got my Ace on the turn and he lost 2/3rds of his chips with (K-Qo) I did the same thing to the same guy last tourney…he friggin’ hates me. He was also the table captain from the last tournament. We got close to the final table…I think there were 12-13 left and I look down at As-Ac. I limped in and another guy called…then a kid went all-in with his last 1400 (A-Jo). I decided to go all-in at this point to avoid ace-crackitis. This is something that happens just as often ‘live’ as it does online so….there you go. The guy that limps in between folded and I knocked another person out of the tourney. It got really tight right before the final table bubble but it didn’t stop everybody from bluffing relentlessly. Finally down to 10 and the final table is set to go after a quick break.

The final table starts and I am a card rack! I raised and took down some pots right away. Then I get A-Qo and raise again…some kid (Soon to be Phil Hellmuth-ian poker personality at the table) goes all-in with about 5000. I had 13,500 so I called…he had 9’s (coincidence with the Phil Hellmuth hand) and I didn’t improve. After that hit I went into final table hibernation mode. A couple of guys got knocked out and the blinds were getting bigger. I got into it for another pot and lost to the same guy. So now there are 7 people left and I’m down to T3500 all of the sudden. I’m saying to myself “not again…kicking ass at the start of the final table and all of the sudden I’m short-stacked again!” The blinds were up to 2k-4k and were making there way towards me at the table. I look down at 8c-5c and decide to push with my last 3500. I get called by the other short stack that I have covered and miraculously the blinds fold! He has 10-7o and wouldn’t you know it…an 8 on the river. Back in business! In the money With 6 left the Phil Hellmuth wannabe kid starts with his table talk. He is in the big blind with A-xo and the guy in the SB has Ks-7s. The Phil Hellmuth wannabe goes all-in and shows the SB his Ace! I was bullshit but everybody said (in a real condescending and whiny voice) “He has the right to show it”. The SB calls like a moron and gets knocked out in 5th place. Down to four….the tournament points leader…the mousy young black girl…and the Phil Hellmuth wannabe/soon to be asshole. The mousy black girl was funny…and she survived the whole tournament. For some reason she couldn’t read my obvious bluffs or make a right call when I raised. I knocked her out soon thereafter. Now the Phil Hellmuth wannabe really starts talking it up…he and the points leader are neck and neck in the points race. He starts in on me when I didn’t call with trash cards in order to knock out the Points leader. “Get out of my face…what do you think you are Phil Hellmuth?...I’m not doing this for you or for him…I’m doing this for me!” I said. He’s just ballistic at this point but I completely set him on tilt when I went all-in with a K-Jo in the SB when he was BB. He showed me his A and folded. I showed him my hand and I thought he was about to cry. I knocked him out with pocket Queens and he goes away…finally. It was about 1:00AM after the points leader and I traded pots. I had the bigger stack so we chopped. BTW I had about 12 Bud Lights during this whole thing and I’m starting to get tired at work now.

I’m going to Foxwoods on Saturday, June 24th so if you’re in the area you will find me at the 1-2 NL, 4-8 Limit, or ACT I, II or III tournament tables. It is a night away for out 3rd anniversary but my wife goes into a trance when she plays the slot machines. So we’ll probably do the romantic stuff during the day and then eat at a nice restaurant there. HOWEVER, I will be lurking in the poker room late-night so look for a slightly overweight 35 year old with graying hair….who’s also slightly intoxicated. Well, come to think of it I’ll probably blend in with most of the guys there. But, I’ll be listening.
Last but not least I watched the WPT at Foxwoods where Victor Ramdin won 1.3 mil. I have to say that all of the 25 year old and less players like Alex…whatever his name is…are completely fucking annoying to watch…with the exception of  Nick Schulman. He seems like a normal kind of guy. Alex dough-boy had a deer in the-fucking-headlights look and was deliberately slow on every decision. Here’s a tip…you aren’t Chris Ferguson. It sounds like I’m jealous…and admittedly I am about the money he made. But, stop the annoying act….and for that matter any other <25 year old “phenoms” stop acting like a bunch of ADHD/ADD punks.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Live Poker been good...Online Poker been bad

I went to a bar league on Thursday. I haven’t played much online poker lately….except for the WPBT tourneys. I can’t play every Thursday because of hectic home life but I get there occasionally. I’ve been there 3 times so far and made the final table twice. Not bad…I should be there every week! The bar…we’ll call it “Slickey’s” to protect the innocent and its chock full o’ gamble. There is the bar league tournament every Thursday for a scant 40.00 fee buy-in NL MTT….and there are cash games “in the back” for those who want to play. I like the tourney because there are about 50 regulars who gamble and push with a half decent hand. I usually sit back a while and wait to double-up on somebody who tries to push pre-flop into my K’s or A’s. There are a few hands I got lucky on this past week…but who makes a final table without getting lucky at least once?

I had A-5o on the button. I called the 50.00 blind and with 4 other limpers a flop of Ax-Ax-9x falls. One guy folds to my left…the guy next to him goes all in for his last 1350 in chips. Everybody folds to me and I had the 2500 in chips that I started the tournament with. I call……he flips over pocket 9’s…ouch….7x on the turn….5x on the river…I win! The guy to my right was a table captain type…you know….he knows everything and everybody else know nothing…that type. So he nitpicks every move everybody else makes. I’d be dealing and I forgot to continue with the flop etc…he’s like “c’mon dude” we don’t have all night. I put my beer down and muttered “settle down”. He comes up later in the tournament when he is moved to my right after I was moved. I kept getting cards at the first table and was raising quite a bit pre-flop…that usually is enough to take down the limpers and a small pot. The first table I was at was the “back room” and it is really smoky back there. I’m not against smoking but when there is no ventilation it gets bad….and it was hot out to boot! So I get moved and I’m happy as hell to get out of there. The place is setup with about 5-6 tables. One of the tables is a pool table…felt is already there but it does look kind of funny. HE tournaments have brought so much money back into the bars and into charities recently. It’s really a win-win for everybody…except for the lottery commission in MA. NH is going to take all the action away soon if the MA legislature doesn’t lighten up soon. There is a greyhound racing park in Seabrook, NH that runs tournaments on Saturday, Sunday, and now they’re thinking about adding Monday also….all day! They also have Sit’nGo’s and small stakes limit HE…here is the link Seabrook

I started to talk to a girl at the bar before the tournament. Apparently she deals the tournaments in Seabrook! She said that if she deals there she can’t play there…which makes sense. The thing is that she said it’s getting so popular at the Greyhound Park that they don’t have an empty seat for anything! That’s why they are going to add Mondays.
Anyway, back to the tournament…the table captain gets moved to my left and we get a break for about 5 minutes. I run to the bathroom and when I came back to the tournament I announce “Well…it’s time to get going!! Let’s gamble!!” A few of the guys’ ears perked up…most of these guys know each other and they sort of take it easy on each other. I don’t know why I said that but I was there to get some chips and push towards the final table. The two guys on my right were brothers…two Italian brothers who weren’t afraid to gamble. They got knocked out pretty quick though. One of them threw his chips across the table when he went all-in…was called…and lost. His brother was pretty drunk and kind of lost interest and was knocked out soon after. We re-adjust on the table and I get Ah-Ad under the gun. I min-raised to knock out a few limpers and one guy before the button goes all-in. I call of course and I thought that I was all set…he had As-Qd. Of course he rivers a straight and my aces are as good as cracked! I played it perfectly but still it sucks when you are that close to becoming the big stack in the tourney and have aces cracked. (I would exact my revenge on the final table) I think I went on tilt after that…I started pushing with small pairs and A-rag. Nobody was calling though! I did make on huge mistake on a push but I took out the table captain on a nasty bad beat. I was in the SB and he was in the BB…everybody folded to me…I had Kx-6x…hmmmmmm…I thought for a minute and went all-in. Big mistake….he called with Kx-Qx. However, I flopped a six…he threw his cards and left in disgust. I think everybody at the table liked me a lot more after that. That means they are willing to give their chips to somebody they like….and they did.

We had another break and the final table was set to go…I had a better than average stack with about 10,000. There were a couple of guys with more than 20,000 so I would have to be a little careful to make the payout. Top 6 got paid and there were a couple of short stacks. There was one incident that lasted most of the final table. One kid was kind of visibly aggravated about something and he decided to let everybody know what it was. He was getting upset about some of the guys checking down their hands at the final table. The table was still full and 5 or so of the guys at the final table were friends. I noticed that they were doing this earlier in the tournament but like I said…..they were all good friends and would probably love to pound on somebody if one of them got into a fight. So this one kid blurts out to the guy running the tournament….” This is a friggin’ joke…these guys keep checking it down to each other….it’s collusion!”…..all hell broke loose. I felt so bad for the kid because they all started raggin the shit out of him. He was right…but he shouldn’t have opened his mouth…it’s not like we were at Foxwoods. I really thought the guy to his left was going to punch him in the face but he was spared when he got knocked out. The chip leader went all-in after “collusion-boy” raised….the guy had pocket aces and holds his cards to the other half of the table and yells “COLLUSION! COLLUSION! COLLUSION!”….he also called him a “turtle-neck bitch” whatever that means. I really did feel bad for the kid.  I got busted at 4th about a half hour later for about 100.00 profit. I had pocket 4’s and the guy who called had pocket J’s but it was getting late and I was short-stacked. I had Friday off from work so it was about 12:45 at that point. I had fun but that one kid may never come back……

Monday, June 05, 2006

Had fun in the H.O.R.S.E WPBT tourney last night....
I've never played Razz online so that was an education...Although I did make most of my chips in Razz! I made the cardinal sin of going all-in with K-K-x-x late in the Omaha Hi/Lo level of the tournament..of course I'm going to get knocked out. I realized that I made a mistake but I was seriously pot-committed. I'm in a respectable 11th place overall in the POY race but I'd be happy just to make some cash. I guess I'll try to get a satellite on FullTilt again....I won a NL satellite a few months back. I just can't justify dropping the cash I used to in the WSOP qualifying-quest. It's a possibility but the only realistic qualifiers would probably be for a Foxwoods WPT/Classic tourney. I can't go to the WPBT summer classic either! Damn...I'm getting depressed here.

My daughter is 13 months old today! Where the hell has the time gone...It really does go by fast. It's a good thing her birthday was 5-5-05 instead of 6-6-06!

I won a buy-in to a 100.00 NL MTT tourney in my home town..I came in 5th out of 45. It's supposed to take place in June so I'll have to get aggressive with these locals. I've done pretty well in the local tournaments...Probably because they are 'live'. I seem to play a better quality of tournament when it is 'live'. Maybe it's the concentration factor. But, I tend to swill beers at a live local tourney like the online tourneys. It just may be the TV in the background that I keep eyeing when I'm not involved in a hand. 'lucko21'of PokerCash may be on to something here....he won another re-buy tourney. He maintains that he wasn't watching the TV in the background like he usually does...and that's what I do. It's starting to make a little more sense.....Congrats to him.

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