Saturday, August 22, 2009
Greetings and Salutations!
What a day! Got to meet some cool guys from the state of Mass.etc and a ringside judge for boxing matches. What I want to tell you about is my quick win, sudden loss and huge win after a four and a half hour rollercoaster!
So I get into Harrahs at about 1:45pm four 1-2 nl games going and they tell me that they are opening a game on table 12 at 2 pm. I set up in the three seat. Nine other guys that I don't know sit down...SWEET! Talked to a guy from Oklahoma on my left who had a cute girl sitting behind him telling me about the soft games he plays in and makes a $1000 a week there...WHERE? Get me that info bro! As we are talking he tells me that he told his girl that I seem to be the guy that he needs to look out for. As he finished this statement, he raises on the button. I smiled and looked down at two kings. Now, the right thing to do here is try to get heads up but these folks were very readable and I wanted to know how many aces may be out there. There were five limpers, and six callers to his raise. The flop was 10 high. I check, as does everyone else to him. He bets about $40, I call...everyone else folds. The turn is a Jack, I check again and he shoves all in..."Crap," I say as I look at him, "Did that , Jack hit you?" He tightened up even more, 'nope, it sure didn't' I telepathically said to him. I called the last 125 and turned my Kings over, he nodded and shoved his hand in the deck and pulled out another $100.
So by 4:30 pm I'm up pretty good. I'm talking to a kid from Mass.etc who is on his bachelor party, and one of the party is in the six seat. I've been getting hit in the face with overs, AJ, AQ, AK, A10...so i've been opening to get the junk out, the table seems to be getting anxious. So with a decent hand I opened from the hi-jack and, Chris, the guy in the photo, part of the bachelor party comes along with four others. I miss the flop but Chris, bets out $40 and takes the pot down. Two hands later I am in the cut off seat, while talking to the guy to my right about .357 magnums that have bullets that fire pelts for home security, I look down at KJ off and open again, I get six callers. The flop is K 7 5 two diamonds. They check around to me and I push out $40, Chris, my nemesis, is the only caller. The turn is a diamond. MISTAKE COMING! I bet out $100, Chris, gets REALLY excited and contemplates, I know as the 100 is flying in the air that FUCKED up. So Chris pushes all in for another $85. I need to fold here, no matter what I need to fold here...MISTAKE COMING! I called. Yes, I CALLED! River is a blank and Chris shows the A 6 diamonds. GEEZ RAY! I am so pissed at myself that I don't get up and continue to tell myself to learn from that obvious mistake and grow. Well I play for another hour and 15 minutes and am close to doubling my buy in when this hand comes up.
I am in the hi jack seat and Chris is under the gun plus one. He opens to $15, gets two callers before I look down at 8 10 spades, normally, I FOLD. In my spot, as I noticed the cutt off and button don't want to play, I called. Now I called because I can outplay Chris and the other callers at the table, I know which spots to mess with and which not to, but if I can hit my hand, Chris will never get away from his, at least I hoped. The small blind called and we went to the flop five handed. The flop was a 9c 8c 4c, sb checks, Chris bets out $40, fold, fold to me...now here is what I am thinking, AcKh, AQ, AJ, A10 maybe, 1010, JJ, qq, KK, AA and does not have the flush draw or is trying to bet off the flush draw. This is the range I put him on, more the over cards versus the over pair. I called. The sb folds. We are heads up folks. The turn is the 10 of hearts! YAHHHHHTTTTTZZZZZEEEEEE!!!!! Chris bets out $60, okay, now I put him directly on an over pair. I raised it to another $125, Chris tanked...so now I knew I was against an over pair, no set, no made flush. After a bit Chris went ALL IN! Crap! Over pair with a big flush draw now...Uhhh, $245 to you Ray. CRAP AGAIN! Okay, I call. River a red five! Stepped away from the table turned my back and did a weak Tiger pump and sat back down. Pulled in the pot and smiled. Chris came over, yes came over and shook my hand and told me he thought I was on a move because he had bluffed me two hands before the diamond hit and thought I was pissed at him. I told him he did the best he could to get value out of me it just worked out for me is all. We talked I asked him if I could get his picture and told him about the site and hopefully he is reading this, told you bro, no shit talking. You played the hand well enough. Maybe you could have played it different to get me off but remember Chris and folks...That's Poker!
Stay nice as rice and mello as jello!
Sunday, August 16, 2009
The picture above shows my boy Brandon on the bottom left with the back of his head to us, my seat is to his right, a few stacks there with my water, mp3 player and the rest of the players on my table, who were there after hour four.
Bachelor Party! We started the festivities at the Beau Rivage in Biloxi, Ms. Four of the eight played in the $200 tournament and myself with the other three did other things in the casino. The later part of the day we were going to hit Bourban street in New Orleans, just the thing that my bud Alex was looking to do for his bachelor party, that's correct, no strippers!
Well I sit down in a 1-2 NL game, I LOVE THE BEAU, I adjust my my chair, get the cocktails that I want, pass my card over for my comps, place my cell phone on the table and plug in my mp3 player and start to play some poker. The reason why I went through this is because the only thing you can do at Harrah's in New Orleans is get a cocktail, except for RED BULL! What's up with that, unless you want to pay for it or you're a diamond club card holder, which means you have gambled over $50,000! Whatever!
So I am in this game and use my tight aggressive strategy and I will only play small pairs deuces and up on the button. The jackpot is quad fives beat. My goal is to find the regulars and non-regulars, find the nits, weak tights and loose aggressive players in the first two dealers. I found all of them by that time. In the one seat was a weak tight player, who happened to be winning, in seat three was a loose aggressive regular with Auburn attire on. He mixed it up well and his betting was varied and well done for the most part. If he is reading this, I figured you out by the time we played that big hand. In the five seat was another weak tight player. In seat six was a regular loose aggressive player with big sunglasses on, the other black guy at the table in the begining. In seats 7 and 8 were two more weak tight players.
Well I am going back and forth with my stacks and get somewhat back to even in about my second hour of play Brandon sits down to my left. I am on the button and there are four limpers to me, I look down at A 5 of spades. The flop comes K A 2 rainbow. Check to the big sunglass wearing black guy who fires out 15, I float (call) and the rest of the table folds. The turn card is a 7 of hearts, now there is a flush draw, BSBG fires $50 and I call. The river brings a non-flush 2. He contemplates and fires another $50. This is what I saw, I have more information than you as the reader, I know that when he has the best hand on the river he overbets a bit, but since he bet the same as the turn it made me suspicious plus the only thing he could have is a weak ace or maybe two pair but again if he had that he would have bet more to get that value out of me. I call and he shows air as I turn over the A5. He nods.
I am now in the cut-off, very next hand, one before the button and I look down at AJ diamonds. I really don't like this hand especially to a raise. Well in middle position a weak tight player makes it $15 to go, BSBG calls, I reluctantly call and we get two callers behind. Now let me tell you why I called and why it is dangerous to call here in other circumstances. When the raise occurred I looked over to the Auburn geared loose aggressive player who would act behind me and he looked like he was not going to play and I really wasn't worried about Brandon and the other two between him and I. Normally, if you don't know the table yet, this hand should not be called by an early raiser, that is a strong raise into the field and you are either facing AK, AQ or the top pairs, JJ, QQ, KK, AA. What is AJ going to do? Maybe hit the nut flush, or you hope for AAJ, JJA or q 10 k, is about it. Your kicker is not good here but with this field I new I could play with them. The flop cam A Q A, raiser bets out $30, fold to me and I call, I instantly put him on AK...AQ will not bet here, should not bet here and this guy does understand poker so I gave him a bigger kicker. The turn brought the 7 diamonds, which is a flush draw for me. The raiser bets out $50, I called for the flush and my J, so there is about 11 outs so I am about 25% to get there so i am a 4-1 dog, the pot is giving me about 3-1, I should only call at even or 5-1 on my money. When you look at the implied odds, if I hit my flush, maybe not my jack, with what he had left I was an easy 5-1. The river brought a hold'em card(blank). He put his remainder one hundred plus in the pot. Now I could call and HOPE that he had a weaker ace or be beat by my first thought, AK. It was AK, AQ that were the only two hands that beat me but I folded my hand up for the table to see. The BSBG said you called me with an ace but wouldn't call him with that ACE! During this same orbit (dealer) I am under the gun, and I make it $15 to go with pocket kings, I get SEVEN callers! My LORD! Well the flop comes K 8 8, two hearts. I check, Brandon looks like he is going to bet but decides not to and it gets back to Big Sunglass Black Guy, who bets out $50. I call and everyone else folds. The turn is the Q of hearts, I hesitate and check again, he bets out $100, I call. The river is a hold'em card and I want to bet but I may not get a call, so I get the remainder of my chips, about $130 and hold it in my hands looking at the board. He says, "Save your money."
I instantly plop it across the line, and say, "all this?"
He called quickly and I turned over my full house he showed me the A of hearts and King of clubs, without that hand he would not have doubled me up. Without my showing that I would not call with the AJ of diamonds he would not have called. If I would not have called him down with the A5 of spades he would not have called. Basically, when you are playing against the better players, you have to consider everything you do while they are there, they will remember. The weak tight ones only remember the hands they are in. Play chess?
You all be cool and stay nice as rice and mello as Jello!
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
So I get into Harrah's on a Wednesday afternoon...yes I snuck in and no one at home knew...my wife thinks i'm addicted to gambling and my answer was..."Only when there are lunchboxes at the table, babe."
The funny thing is I have not been in the poker room for at least 15 months...since my daughter was born. Well, when I got in there I saw a couple of guys who used to grind it out before I left on my hiatus. There they were killing the table. Still grinding it out on the 1-2 NL game and killing it! Usually the young ones want to get into the 2-5 NL game quickly but Brandon has done a pretty good job at staying in a spot where he knows he will make money and make money he has! Brett does play in the 2-5 game and does pretty well in both games. These guys are solid and I respect their games.
I get into the game after checking on my buddy AT&T(yep, he has those initials, pretty cool) and Davey both are pretty deep in the Wednesday tourney and look to final table, they both did and cashed! Nice job Davey and AT! I think AT&T is 7 for 8. I hate him for this, he has a pretty cool job, he goes off shore to West Africa for a month and comes home for a month! So now I tell my kids to study hard and become engineers! I mean if AT can graduate from PENN STATE and get a gig like this...shoot...Ya know?!?
Back to poker, so I'm at the table and look at the line up, a lot of regulars, guys who can't get away from hands, you know raise with pocket aces, get called in eight spots, a flush draw hits the flop they don't even have the ace for that draw, two people go with him to the river and check raise him all in when the flush hits and he says, "Pots too big, I can't fold!" When I'm thinking...you were probably beat on the turn, no further details on this type of player but you know the one I'm talking about...MARRIED TO THEIR HAND! There are a couple of spots that I decide I don't want to mess with, why give myself a headache trying to outplay them. I really want the one seat, older guy, who is splashing around and calling down with stuff like 7-2 suited and gets there to snap off a decent pocket pair in a three way pot, it was brutal.
In an hour I'm up one bone and doing pretty well, there are a couple of guys who keep grimacing every time I raise, looked like they wanted to play but didn't. I did not mind as the freaking deck keep smacking me in the face.
I usually go in with a tight/aggressive strategy even tighter because I try to only play jackpot starting hands. Any Ace none suited I folded unless I was in the cut-off or button where I would open with them. Any suited or gap connector I would limp from early to middle position with bigger than 6-5. I would call a raise only if I felt like I was last to act or with anything suited 9-10 or higher from the early to middle position. I played AK, AQ, and AJ suited from any position...I considered AJ off and A10 off bad hands from early to middle position...just trouble. This helped me to DO WORK! this session. There is more to this strategy but it involves reads, bet sizing and some body tells.
A new player sat down in the 7 seat, I was in the 10 seat, and made some money on his first hand. I am now in middle middle position and look at two red aces. I make it $15 to go and proceed to get FIVE callers! What the HELL! The flop comes J 2 7, two spades, I have the ace of spades, the deuce and seven are the spades. They check around to me and I push out $60 and only the new guy calls...now my heart starts to race, and my palms are getting sweaty but on the outside I'm looking at the cards and looking at him for any signs as the turn card comes off which is a red deuce. QUICKLY I diagnose his hand, if he called with j7, j2, 72 he would have raised on the flop to get rid of flush draws or he may have just called because he knew I had a big pair and was sitting on J7 or J2 for two pair and just got a full house on the turn or I just counterfeited his two pair with the second deuce or he would have raised to try to take it downd to get it done if he was savy enough...he was not savy. Now I am putting him on a big J, KJ, AJ, QJ, J10, possibly J9 and he could be suited and looking for a spade. He could have pocket queens, kings or jacks but I think he re-pops pre-flop with these hands so I discard those. He checks to me again and I push out $125...he freaking beat me to the pot! No raise so he must be drawing or has a big jack. The river brought a 6 of hearts, he checks, now I can do one of three things...check behind because he may not pay off a bet anyways and I can show my monster so that folks at the table don't think I am making moves...2) I push out a value bet about 1/3 of the pot and hope to get paid off...3) I push all in trying to make it look like I am buying the pot. I go with option two and he folds his hand up showing the J10 of spades. These situations are scary because that could have gone the other way, the freaking spade could have hit the river and he gets paid!
I've rambled long enough, I get into the poker room when I can and I hope to build the bankroll so that I can get into the 5-10 NL game one day, most guys sit with 2-5k in that game. Usually your bank roll should be about 10-15 times your buy in depending on how you play so, one day. My next step is the 2-5 NL game and the usual buy in is 500-1k, but we'll see.
After the tourney, AT&T and Davey come over and look at the table and laugh, as they also knew it was pretty soft. They wanted me to pick up and go to the Beau with them so they could play in the 6pm tourney on the coast. Tell you about that at another time and about the two footlongs that I ate...and the near bet for $300 to eat a third loaded with chilli and all kinds of shyte!
Until next time you all stay nice as rice and mello as jello!
Saturday, August 1, 2009
The blurry picture above is the back part of the Harrah's poker room. This is the way it looks after a 10 hour session...SERIOUSLY!
On to the good stuff...so I went into Harrahs, was going to try to make a move to the coast but after having a lazy day with the kids and wife, it turned out to be about 6 pm before I started moving around to get going. A drive to the coast takes about an hour and half, dependent on how fast you like to move. The coast has the Beau Rivage, Imperial Palace, Isle Of capri, and Hard Rock Cafe...there are more casinos but I am naming the ones with poker rooms, that I know of, because there could be more poker rooms that I don't know of. So I roll into Harrahs snap a few pictures and get into a 1-2 no limit game. I am at table 10. Table 10 and table four have got to be the coldest tables in the room, the freaking AC blows directly on these tables...good thing I always carry my jacket. So if you are in Vegas and you see somebody carrying a jacket into a casino, he's probaly going to play poker.
It has been a long time since I played at a table where it was weak not even weak tight...just weak! I got to play with the owner of Collettes...i hope I spelled that correctly, a bar/club that is for people of weird tastes (can't get into here but if you want to know message me)...good guy though. He had a lot of the chips on the table until he ran into quad queens.
I started a little loose, gave away $50 and reprimanded myself, got back into the groove and went into tight/aggressive mode. In the next 30 minutes I made $150, in less than two hours I'm up 3 beans!
HOW? Stuff like this. I'm limping under the gun with AJ suited, get five callers, hi-jack makes it $15, I re-pop to $45, all the limpers fold to him and he calls. Flop is 8 high. I lead for $40 and he folds, I take it down. I am in the hi jack seat and under the gun makes it $15 to go, three callers to me on the button and I see 89 suited, I put out $60 and get called in one spot, he is out of position, and probably has a big ACE. The flop is jack high, he checks, I bet out $50, he folds. WEAK...or was it? I mean, look...new kid sits down and is in the cut off seat, I look at A10 in the hi jack seat, i limp in as did five others in front of me, new kid opens to $10, all five limpers call! When it gets to me, (I was just going to call at first but when I saw that $60 in the pot they asked me if they could join my stack), so I re-pop to only $45! They all folded! WEAK! I can't really talk strategy here, it was like I was in a movie, like Rounders, yeah, when Mike was making his moves at the end of the movie to make all that money back and his reads were right on everytime, I was in that moment. I can play a bit but not as good as these folks were bad, I mean they made me look GOOD! It did help that the cards slapped me in the face also. I am on the button and look at 89 diamonds, there are six people limped into the pot. The flop comes, 5 6 7 rainbow. The nice lady in the big blind bets out, two people call behind as do I and the small blind. The turn is a deuce I believe, the small blind leads out, the lady raises, the other two fold and I feel like taking it down here, so I pop it again basically putting the sb and bb all in, sb folds and bb, the lady, calls quickly and tables the other side of the straight, 3 4. I made plays on several pots that would have got snapped off by good players! IT FELT GOOD! This is why I try not to ever talk badly to them, I offer them gum, I offer to get them drinks, you just have to keep them comfortable and happy as you take the money...'nuff said about that.
It was a good night, four hours of work that could have easily...EASILY gone the other way! You all stay nice as rice and mello as jello!