Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The Last Week...

I've been real busy the last week or so. It started with me going up to Orlando on Wednesday to do some DeepStacks videos. I spent about 8-9 hours and shot a bunch of modules for the site. After that, the plan was for me to go to Daytona Beach for Mike Skinner's (used to be a Nascar driver/now drives in a different league) Charity Poker Tournament.

Mike Skinner and his people had two days of festivities planned. Thursday and Friday. A big storm hit Orlando and all of Florida on Thursday. DeepStacks and I decided it was best to not drive through the storm and I didn't make it to Daytona on Thursday. The next day the weather had cleared up a bit and I drove up to Daytona in the afternoon and played in their charity tournament. I was at the "celebrity table" with a bunch of Nascar/Napa/other league drivers. To be honest, I didn't know any of them lol. Some faces looked familiar though. Also, the runner up to Carrie Underwood on American Idol (Bo Bice) was playing too <<< I didn't know who he was either until someone told me.

The guys didn't know much about poker but I was helping the people I was sitting inbetween. Since it was for charity there were unlimited rebuys and then an addon at the end of the hour. I ended up losing AKcc vs K9 vs 55 vs 24cc for a huge pot after the rebuy period when I moved all in and got called in 3 spots lol. I flopped an ace but the turn brought a five and that was that. They were giving a first place prize of 1k to a charity for whoever won the Charity SnG so that would have been cool. I had a fun time and it was nice meeting the guys. They were all friendly and pretty rowdy. It was a great experience.

Once that was done I headed back to Orlando and then drove back to South Florida. It was now Friday night and on Saturday I was playing the Isle $900 Main Event Tournament. It started at 2:30pm and 22k starting stacks. The blind levels were an hour long and I had a great starting table. I recognized one or two faces and didn't exactly know anyone, which is awesome. The table had a couple soft spots and I had position on the looser players. I was doing my typical blind raise under the gun for the first couple of levels. I was playing a lot of pots early because the table was so soft.

One of the players at the table got into a little verbal altercation with me and questioned my ethics. He limped I raised JTo and he called. The flop came A9Tdd and we both checked. The turn was 5s he bet I called, the river was another T and he bet the pot, 1400. I thought for a little bit and decided to just call. He had been pretty tight postflop and I thought he could have a better kicker. Once I called he said "You win I missed." and motioned to muck his hand but didn't actually throw his cards in the muck. I asked the dealer if he mucks am I allowed to muck without showing? The dealer said no a winning hand has to be shown. I told the guy he has to muck his hand or show his hand. He started getting upset with me and then the dealer told him to show his hand. He tabled 24dd and then I showed my JTo. The guy then made some comments about how that was bad etiquette on my part, etc... He was pretty annoyed with me. I tried to explain to him that his hand wasn't mucked nor dead and if he had the best hand he would have won but he wasn't listening.

Later on in a pot he bet the river with a flush and a guy just called with two pair. When the player saw the guy had the flush he threw his cards into the muck but the guy asked to see him. The dealer turned over his two pair. After the hand I asked him "Isn't that the bad etiquette thing you were talking about? That's what you meant right? That seems like quite the contradiction." He mumbled something under his breath that I asked him to repeat. "Did you say something rude?" I asked. He mumbled it again but I couldn't hear over the loudspeaker at the casino. The kid to his left motioned that he said something questionable and the guy told me "If I say something rude you will know." I told him "Thanks, I appreciate it." and continued to play. I was nothing but a gentleman and always am at the tables. People just dislike me at times.

The first big pot I got involved in was against the guy to immediate right. He was tough to play against because he would bluff with hands that had value and value bet hands that didn't have much value. You never really knew if he was bluffing or what. He limped the lowjack for 150 and I isolated with 9To from the hijack. Everyone else folded and the flop came AQhh9c he lead for 550 and I called. The turn was the 5d and he bet 1100 this time. I called again. The river was the 2c and he bet 3200. I had a feeling he wasn't that strong, along with what I thought was a bet sizing tell, and I tanked for a little bit before I decided to call. The player said "Nine." and didn't show his hand. Uht oh.. he could easily have a better kicker than me. The situation from the previous paragraphs made me tell the guy "Well if you don't think you can win you can muck your hand." The player then showed 97ss and I won the pot with my ten kicker. My stack was now at 24.5k

My next pot was against the same player. I raised T6cc UTG and got called by the button and the big blind. The flop came AQKr and I bet 650. The big blind called (Same guy who never knows where he's at etc.. I think he's just learning the game or just has a very unorthodox style.) The turn was the J still making a rainbow board. He led out for 1200 and I just called. The river was another Q and he bet 3300. I called and he showed A4o. This is what I mean. Was he value betting or bluffing? I really don't think he was capable of folding top pair.

I lost a big pot to the guy who was upset at me. He opened UTG for 425. It was literally one of his first raises all day. The blinds were 100/200. I didn't think he had a real big hand here due to his bet sizing and how he played. He got 5 callers and I called in middle position with A6cc. The flop came J74cc and he bet 2500 which was about the pot. With 12k behind. I called. Everyone else folded. The turn was the Ac and he jammed for 12k. I didn't think he had AA/KK/QQ/JJ (he shoved 5k all in pre about with JJ at 75/150 into my 350 UTG raise.) So I thought his range was AJ/KQcc/etc. Basically there was no way that ace helped him unless he held exactly AJ. I thought for a while and since I thought AJ was the only hand I couldn't beat in his range decided to call. He had limped ev ery hand previously, so that's where I got most of my info from. He did in fact have AJ and I bricked the river and doubled him up. I told him "Nice hand." and moved on to the next pot.

A couple orbits later at the 150/300 level he opened to 725 and I made my first 3bet of the day to 2425 with AKo and 9k behind. He asked how much I had behind and called. The flop came 954ccc and I didn't have a club. He checked and I thought and checked as well. He put me all in on the 6h turn and I folded. I then blinded down to about 7k and got moved to a new table where fellow deepstacks pro Hayden "Nipsman" Fortini was sitting. This table had a few more familiar faces.

A couple hands into the table the guy to my right limped with a shortstack and I shoved all in for 6k at 150/300/25a with AKdd. The big blind tanked it and folded and the limper folded. About an orbit later I was in the small blind and the hijack opened to 750. Hayden called 750 (They both were deep) and I shoved TT in the small blind for 6500. The opener folded and Hayden snap called. I showed TT and he said "Wow you have Tens?" I thought he was going to show me 77-88. Instead he turned over AKhh.. What a slowroll! lol Just kidding Hayden. I won the flip and was now up to about 14k.

A few hands later Hayden opened in early position to 800 and I looked down at KcKh. I thought about 3betting but decided against it and just flat called. We were heads up to a flop of JTcc4h and he checked. I bet 1225 and he raised to 4500. I moved all in for about 9k more and he called fairly quickly. I turned over my KK and he showed J9 of spades. The turn was the 8 giving him eight more outs and the river was the 7 giving him the straight and knocking me out. Shucks. I wished everyone good luck and told Hayden to take it down.

On Sunday I played online poker and it didn't go so well again. I played real good in some tournaments and then made a couple mistakes in others. I didn't run the best either and that made for a losing Sunday. Sundays are always frustrating. You are going to lose more times than you win.. But I'm still convinced I might not be playing my best overall. With the fields being so large there is a ton of luck and variance. I guess as long as I play my best I will be happy but I'm not sure I'm doing that. I have a lot to learn still and need to continue to always improve my game. That's where I'm at right now. Sometimes I feel like I have it figured out, but I am always thinking of what I need to do to improve.

On Monday I decided I would play an all out grind. I played a ton of tournaments and had a lot of close calls. I finished 4th in one tournament during the day and got deep in the $1k Monday before I busted about 20-30 out of the money when I slowplayed top set and my opponent rivered a gutter straight draw. I check shoved the river and I was on my way out. It was a pretty big pot.

Later in the night I was lucky enough to get to the final heads up match of the $100 Heads up Super Turbo tournament. My opponent in the finals: Hayden "Nipsman" once again! We decided to chop it even and then he proceeded to beat me. I shoved J7o and he called with K4o and he held. The odds of us both advancing all the way to the end and playing each other in the FINAL match is astronomical. It was a good way to end my Monday night.

One last thing before I wrap this blog up... A couple months ago I talked about my buddy Amir's website, PokerWit. He just added a Pro Section to his website. If you want to discuss hands with poker professionals then you can sign up for $5 a month in the Pro Hands section.

If you haven't signed up for his website yet (which is free to be a member of - just no access to the Pro Hands section) and you sign up now, put me in as a referral when you sign up ("Cre8ive") He said he will give a FREE WEEK of access to the Pro Hands section for all the readers of the blog who put me as their referral. That's pretty nice of him. Check out his site though it is the next step in online poker discussion. PokerWit Signup Page.

I have a couple interesting stories that happened this week but I will save them for the next blog Saturday/Sunday. Tomorrow I am going to play the Hard Rock $1k Tournament. They are having two Day 1's again. If I lose tomorrow I can buy back in on Saturday and we finish playing on Sunday. It should be a good tournament. Until then...

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