Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Live Poker

So I've been dabbling in live poker this month. I started off winning my 1st 3 sessions feeling like live poker is the easiest thing since my drunken date during my sophomore year in college. Then I went to go play $5/$10 nl at the Venetian and played this hand. Epr w/ $1500 opens to $40, mp w/ $900 calls, I, on the button, 3bet to $160 w/ KK (have'em both covered), both call, flop comes 853r, epr donks $350 (which I love to see because it usually means they don't have KK beat or else they'd c/r or c/c flop), mp calls (which I'm somewhat concerned about because she could have anything from a set to 99-QQ), I shove, both call, I turn to the mp girl and tell her I like her hand...epr rolls over 24s, yes....24s, girl rolls over 33...but hey, at least I win a nice side pot as long as epr doesn't hit his oesd....turn Ace...doh! River doesn't pair and he scoops a nice $4800. He somehow manages to build his stack to around $6500 or so and goes broke w/ KK....postflop...on an ace high flop!! No kings in sight either. I lose $1300 that night.

Then this past Saturday I get invited to play in a $2/$5nl game w/ a mandatory straddle $10-$50 on the button at the Palms. I heard this game is really juicy w/ Michael Phelps having played in it the night before. He is somewhat of a competent player from what I know. Anyway I get in the must move game and get up $1800 right off the bat. I see Phelps come into the room and he gets into a smaller game while waiting to get in my game. You can kind of make out this huge samoan guy standing behind him in the pic...that happened to be his bodyguard. I guess if you confronted Phelps or hit a 2 outer to beat him in a pot you'll have to answer to that dude.

The game played around $10/$20 to $15/$30 nl because some were stradding to $10 while a few others were stradding to $20-$50 w/ several guys having $6k-$10k in front of them. Anyway having been used to playing online and understanding how online regs thunk, playing w/ competent live pros was a nice change of scenery, although I was befuddled at some of the lines the better players took in the game.

A typical hand was button straddle to $20, ep limps, bad epr makes it $70, I flat w/ KTs right behind, another bad player calls, solid sb player makes it $245, ep folds, bad epr calls, I decide to call because I had $8k as did everybody else in the hand (or more), bad player behind me calls so there is about $1k in the pot. Flop comes T73r, chk, chk, now I feel like I have to bet here w/ tp2k so I bet $500, bad player behind me folds, solid sb player calls which has me scratching my head...I guess he's potcontrolling an overpair or AT here, bad epr calls which doesn't mean much because he could have anything. Anyway I'm pretty sure I'm beat by the solid player so I was rooting for a T or K. Turn is a Q now solid player leads for $1300, bad epr raises to $4k, I fold, solid player tanks and says to the bad player you have Q7 or nothing here...finally folds I assume is an overpair. Bad player shows 77 for a flopped set. I don't mind bad player's line although I prefer calling the turn in his spot since he can put both of us on made hands (err, I guess he can't since he was only playing his hands). I don't really understand supposedly solid player's line of 3bet preflop oop, c/c flop, lead turn line. If he had just cbet flop, bad player calls, then I could fold and save $500 (a little whining on my part). This "solid guy" took this line several times. I was beginning to wonder if I had poker all wrong because I was losing every hand while this guy was winning the most. I understand there are times to pot control and/or to induce bets by worse but this guy was doing it almost everytime. You rarely see online regs taking this line consistently.

Anyway I play this stupid hand as well...2 opl, same bad player raises to $50 (after $10 button straddle), I flat w/ A5s on button and we take the pot 5 handed. Flop comes AT7 w/ 2 to my suit so I have the nut flush draw, everybody checks to me and I begin to think whether I'm supposed to bet here or not because of all the pot controlling and flop checks going around (even by the "good players" in the game) and felt like I was obligated to bet something so I bet $135 and get called by an epl and the bad player. Turn comes J of spades bringing 2 spades (along w/ 2 diamonds for my nut flush draw), chk, bad player now leads for $300 (again another head scratcher of a line but w/ a bad player it's understandable), I call, now epl c/r to $900, bad player calls, now I have to call esp. considering that bad player has me covered w/ about $10k in front. While the dealer makes the pot right, I pray to God please let me hit a non pair diamond one time (because I was losing every hand up to that point). River rolls off 5 of spades bringing backdoor spades and giving me Aces and 5s...nice %&^$%^% card I think. Ep player now checks, bad player bets $1500, I fold knowing I'm beat, ep now c/r's again! I start thinking wow, this guy must've c/r'ed the turn w KQ or 98 of spades or a combo spade draw on turn. He goes all in for another $1500 more and bad player snap calls w/ 73 of spades...which is good! Ep player shows AJo for top 2.

Let's dissect this hand. I'm not fond of ep opl w/ AJo utg, not fond of bad player's preflop raise w 73s, I'm ok w/ my flat w/ A5s ip. On the flop I'm ok w/ everybody's line except bad player's call w/ 73 of spades on an AT7 2 diamonds 1 spade. Ep should've c/r'ed the flop though knowing I could be betting a wide range on the button and probably don't have a big ace or else I would've reraised the bad player preflop. On the turn I hate bad player's sudden donk of $300 into the flop better (me) w/ bp + flush draw he turned (lol), my call is standard, ep's c/r is standard although he could've made the raise much bigger because it was a very wet board and his hand is most likely good vs our hands, esp. when I don't raise the turn. The bad player's call of $600 more is very meh w/ bp + fd w/ me right behind. I have to call once he calls though. River ep's check is fine, bad player's bet of $1500 is fine, my fold is solid, and ep's c/r all in is horrendous. Other than that, the hands were played fine.

So I lost $1100 on that hand when I would've lost only $200 most times...I was going to check back the turn Jack. I ended up losing $4500 in the game and called it quits at midnight even though the game was still swinging. Phelps never made it to my game, I guess it probably had something to do w/ owning 14 gold medals, being young and good looking, and being in Las Vegas on a Saturday night. For me I had church early then NFL all day the next day. I had something to tell God the next day at church for not bringing a diamond on that hand.

I guess God must've heard because my fantasy football teams did well overall. I won a few thousand dollars in ff even though 2 of my 3 teams lost the hu matches (won $ in side bets).

I've resumed playing online poker though...well today anyway and won $4k. Maybe it's the other way around??...online is soft and live is tough.

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