Thursday, June 14, 2007

The Mookie, BBT and a Preflop Decision

Before I forget, as I found this out after making yesterday's post but I wanted to get this up right away, it turns out that yours truly is not the only poker blogger who has cashed so far in this year's World Series of Poker. That's right -- relatively new (to our group, anyways) blogger LJ -- adding to the already very impressive list of excellent poker-playing lawyers in our little group -- stormed through the Ladies Event in WSOP Event #17 last week, ending up in 97th place out of 1286 players for a nice cash of nearly 2k and a story for the ages considering this is just her first WSOP event. Very impressive job, now go stop by LJ's blog and hound her to get up some hands or at least a summary of how she ran through that kind of a field in her first appearance on poker's biggest stage. All I know is that last year in my first WSOP, I had trouble winning a single hand, and spent most of my time there in awe of all the big name players around me instead of focusing on playing good poker, and the results were not pretty. So I am super impressed with this performance and look forward to hearing more about the details.

So I made 5th place in the Mookie last night. Normally this is barely even worth mentioning, but there are two things that make it noteworthy in my mind today. First is that this is by far my best Mookie performance of the year. Now we all know that clearly it has been ordained that I may never win the Mookie. Doesn't matter that I've won basically every other kind of blogger tournament ever created, most of them multiple times. The Mookie has always and will always elude me. But this was my first cash of the year in this event, which I would have laid you serious odds on not occurring until mid June if you had tried to bet me on it back in January, so I have to be happy about that. All that said, I truly didn't deserve to be there as far as I got last night, and I'm man enough to admit it. I mean, so what if I got sucked out on 24 times in the Mookie last night. I also laid two sick suckouts on other players in key spots where I would have been eliminated before the final table, so I can't exactly say I played so great. And to be honest, I was in last place with 35 players remaining -- dead last -- and again with 15 players remaining, so it's not like I was going like gangbusters in this thing or anything. No, instead I just kinda hung around, watched everybody and their mother donk their chips to the dwarf like it was goin' out of style since he was at my table from start to finish last night, took advantage of some people when I got short-stacked, and otherwise got lucky in a few key spots. Before I knew it I was at the final table, and eventually in the middle of that table for my first Mookie cash of the year. I think I made like 4 cents or something, so the cash itself wasn't important, but my best showing of the year in this tournament that I am simply forbidden to win meant a little something to me.

And btw, how awesome is the radio broadcast that Buddydank has been running from his blog during the BBT events? It looks like so far the broadcast will only include music for the non-Mookie blogger tournaments until the end of the BBT, but since I finally downloaded winamp and got the shit working last night for the first time, let me just say kudos to Buddy, that shit seriously kicks ass. One of the great things I've always loved about our little group of bloggers is how every now and then someone always thinks of something new that becomes part of our group. Be it a new name for a hand, a new type of tournament, or a new technological thing like this live radio stream, there always seems to be an endless supply of new ideas out there as our group grows and matures, and again I have got to say, the radio broadcast is the absolute shizzy. Now, last night I had to turn it off after about 90 minutes when my wife went to sleep, but from what I heard, I was rolling in the aisles and I look forward to becoming more involved with this in the future. Guest DJing from various bloggers would be a fabulous occurrence if that can actually work, so let's see if that comes to fruition in the coming weeks. But a great, great job by Buddydank who is not only doing great in the BBT but also has come up with what I say is the single best idea in the poker blogiverse over the past long while.

Anyways, the other reason my performance in the Mookie mattered last night is the Battle of the Blogger Tournaments. Now I don't have any official numbers to back this up, but I have got to have the most BBT points out of anyone over the past month of the Challenge. After starting off making the points in just one of my first 14 BBT events or so, since then I have been on a raging tear, coming in 1st and 2nd in the last two Riverchasers tournaments, the next one of which is Thursday night at 9pm ET on full tilt (password is riverchasers), 2nd place in the last MATH tournament, and now 5th in the Mookie this week. I have been leaving all of you hozers in the dust over the past month in the BBT, and I find it very hard to believe that even your glorious BBT points leader Mr. Bayne, whom I had the distinct pleasure of meeting this past weekend in Las Vegas, can equal my BBT points total since early May. In fact, I happen to be privy to some interesting information on total individual profitability across all the included tournaments since the BBT started, and let's just say that that list looks very different than the current BBT leaderboard, and leave it at that. But in any event, I don't know how high I have climbed now on the BBT leaderboard after last night's Mookie -- hopefully Al will update at some point later today -- but let's just say that if you guys up top aren't careful, and in particular if I turn Riverchasers into my own personal ATM again tonight, then you're going to be facing some pressure-filled situations in the final two weeks of this thing as we really head into the home stretch.

Now before I go, I wanted to present you with a real-life situation that happened last night in the Mookie which was the subject of much discussion in the girly chat with me and to solicit your opinions on how you would've played this hand before the flop. I will try to get the details right but, as usual, someone is going to claim that I got the hand wrong -- usually they are wrong and I am right, btw, make no mistake -- but I will present it to you as I believe it happened.

So we're about 2 hours into the Mookie or so. We are down to basically two tables left, maybe 17 or 18 players total, and you have a middle stack, probably in roughly 11th place of 18 players remaining or something very close to that. Let's say you are sitting on around 2700 chips. You're in middle position and you look down to find pocket 9s. While you contemplate what to do with this hand when the action gets to you, the shortest stack left in the tournament, sitting on around 1300 chips, raises the 120-chip big blind from UTG by the standard 3x to 360 chips. Action folds around to you sitting on your pocket 9s. Let's assume btw that the short stack is a very smart, very shrewd type of player with much success in poker tournaments, stunning good looks and a dam hot wife to boot.

What do you do here? Do you call, raise or fold this hand? Why? Is this an allin opportunity, assuming you are ahead and can get the clever shorty to lay down? Or do you just call, and hope to see a flop where your 9s figure to be best? Or, do you prefer to fold here, preserving your middling stack and wait for a better opportunity where the smart player has not already raised it up from under the gun? What's the winning move here?

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Blogger Buddy Dank said...

Thanks for all the props!

As far as what do you do? I need more info. Were they 2 black nines? Red nines? Mixed?
But I think overall I fold out of respect. Yeah..that's the ticket!

10:01 PM  
Blogger TripJax said...

I think you really turned it around when you were at or around 700 in chips left and I raised your BB forcing us to basically get it all-in if you were going to call. I think you had 5-5 and it held up and from there you almost immediately got back over 2500. I don't think you ever looked back. Nice job finishing 5th. Just a random ass 5-5 vs KT (I think that's what I had), but cool to look back and see how sometimes those hands can make all the difference.

I don't recall if I said it before, but congrats on your wsop cash. I read that post word for word and couldn't put it down until I was done. Good stuff.

10:11 PM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

Thanks Trip. And yeah you got it exactly right, you called my allin reraise preflop with my 55 against your KT. Just the kind of hand that has been death for me in most blogger tournaments. I actually won that race and then also beat Astin with AK against his TT at the final table. I can't remember the last time I won two races in one blogger tournament, except for the last Riverchasers when I ran to the end but then lost to the fucking 12 year old.

Good stuff right there. Thanks for the kind words.

10:15 PM  
Blogger NumbBono said...

Are you talking about this hand that busted me in 18th place?

Seat 1: NumbBono (5,955)
Seat 2: IslandBum1 (2,285)
Seat 3: bcbombers (7,615)
Seat 4: hoyazo (8,534)
Seat 5: irongirl01 (2,210)
Seat 6: summer_babe (11,344)
Seat 7: Fishiswa (9,906)
Seat 8: kaellinn18 (2,845)
Seat 9: jeciimd (2,285)

The button is in seat #1
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to NumbBono [9h 9c]
hoyazo folds
irongirl01 folds
summer_babe folds
Fishiswa raises to 1,275
kaellinn18 folds
jeciimd folds
NumbBono calls 1,275
IslandBum1 folds
bcbombers folds
*** FLOP *** [8s 2s Jd]
Fishiswa checks
NumbBono bets 4,655, and is all in
Fishiswa calls 4,655
NumbBono shows [9h 9c]
Fishiswa shows [Js Ts]
*** TURN *** [8s 2s Jd] [2c]
*** RIVER *** [8s 2s Jd 2c] [Ah]
NumbBono shows two pair, Nines and Twos
Fishiswa shows two pair, Jacks and Twos
Fishiswa wins the pot (12,535) with two pair, Jacks and Twos
NumbBono stands up
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 12,535 | Rake 0
Board: [8s 2s Jd 2c Ah]
Seat 1: NumbBono (button) showed [9h 9c] and lost with two pair, Nines and Twos
Seat 7: Fishiswa showed [Js Ts] and won (12,535) with two pair, Jacks and Twos

If that is indeed what you are talking about, I'd be more than happy to write up a discussion of it on my blog.

I couldn't stop thinking about this hand last night as a lay in bed, and I think it might warrant additional analysis.

If this isn't the hand that you're talking about, sorry for hijacking your comments.

10:28 PM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

Numb, no problem at all on the alleged hijacking, but no that is not at all the hand I was referring to.

10:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I re-raise with a jam.

This is a spot to win some chips from shortie and to hopefully get yourself in contention. If you lose you're crippled but you still have 1300 chips to play push monkey with.

Fold equity plus dead money plus having him covered plus needing to make a move to win plus 99 equals full speed ahead.

10:52 PM  
Blogger Doog said...

Don stole my comment, practically word for word.

"Fold equity plus dead money plus having him covered plus needing to make a move to win plus 99 equals full speed ahead."

11:34 PM  
Blogger Chad Carpenter (Yahoo IM: carchd) said...

Since this is the mookie I would fold. I would probably fold this in almost any tournament though. The problem with this hand is the original raiser is not folding. You still have to pray the next 4 or 5 players at the table didn't pick up a monster, just a bad spot. Plus, why on earth would a short stack raise 3XBB committing themselves to a re raise instead of open shoving? Smells like a monster hand there, AA, KK, QQ etc etc. Although it is very hard to fold a mid pair in a $10 tournament so you could argue either.

11:40 PM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

FWIW I don't see how raising to 360 on a stack of 1300 makes you pot committed. I can understand the theory there but you can easily fold with 1000 chips left without being too committed to just automatically go all the way.

Also, assuming you do think the shorty will not fold, that may be a reason not to jam. But does that mean you have to fold what is likely the best hand going in? What about just calling and seeing what flops with your pocket 9s?

12:17 AM  
Blogger WildDuces234 said...

Here I think Just call - Under the gun to me is the position I hate to play - You will instantly get info from the player in this postion after the flop - I call. Hope to see a flop. I check the Flop If I have the chance. the rest is in the cards.

12:33 AM  
Blogger smokkee said...

i agree with Chad it looks like a monster hand to me. why would shorty commit a quarter of his stack with a std preflop raise if he has a middle pair, TT, JJ or AK/AQ etc.

it smells like a monster. i would still call and hope to flop a set tho.

btw- LMAO at Dank (aka mr. i can't fold a pair) saying he'd fold 99 here.

12:40 AM  
Blogger bayne_s said...

My run to top of BBT leaderboard started May 9 so you would have to sliuce the data quite finely to have more points than me since early May.

The profitability # is quite sad as BBT has been -EV.

Goal is $962 in cashes by end of BBT.

12:41 AM  
Blogger Thee_Juice said...

My gut tells me to fold.

"Let's assume btw that the short stack is a very smart, very shrewd type of player".


If this is the case, I think a standard UTG preflop raise (committing 25% of his chips) has to have something large. AA, KK, QQ, JJ, 1010 all dominate you, and any big cards AK KQ KJ..etc, all have you racing. I don't like putting myself in a spot like this (raise or call), especially when there are other players to act behind me. I wait for a better spot. Feels -EV to me.

But then again, I'm a luckbox asshat, so what do I know.

aka: Thee_Juice

1:33 AM  
Blogger lj said...

thanks for the shout out! sadly most of the event is a dim memory, but i posted as much as i can remember earlier today (cause it's not like i'm supposed to be working or anything).

i'd probably call. given the position, if someone in later position goes over the top then i can still fold and am not committed. um, so are you the "very smart, very shrewd type of player with much success in poker tournaments, stunning good looks and a dam hot wife to boot." cause if it was you making the raise i might be more scared and fold. : )

i was faced w/ a similar decision last night, and made a bad play. there was a 3x bb raise by a shortie in early (first?) position, i shoved w/ a huge stack, over 5k (probably about fourth in chips at time) w/ pocket tens, he called w/ pocket jacks, and i was crippled. a jack came on the flop making him a set, and if i'd just called, i might have folded to the overcard on the flop. given my chip stack i think it was silly for me to commit so many chips on what was probably a race or total domination (as it happened).

2:26 AM  
Blogger Mondogarage said...

THe winning move involves all in over the top, followed by stealing away with the hot wife for a few hours of post Mookie Nookie. LOL

Okay. Seriously, I think you have to raise 3x the UTG bet, or fold. Calling here is bad, because if you see any paint on flop, you're probably having to fold to a bet. Folding would be weaktight, but passable, but jamming in that spot is best move, followed by a simply sizable raise.

6:38 AM  
Blogger Rav said...

I would fold seems like the short stack has something decent and is looking for action

10:57 AM  
Blogger Adam said...

I agree with the raise or fold comment. Flopping a set has poor odds, and considering you're up against a shorty, then little to no implied odds either. Also depends on your personal read and what you need from the tournament, victory or a high-place finish you're happy to crawl into with little or no chips.

1:16 PM  
Blogger Eric a.k.a. Bone Daddy said...

What ever happened to post flop play. Bunch of push monkeys read here.

I smell a rat with the 25% raise UTG, but could really have any pair, not just a big one. Call me a pansy, and agree the implied odds are not good, but with 4 or 5 to act, I'll call to see a flop and hope others come along for the ride.

9:07 PM  

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