Tuesday, January 22, 2008

MATH Recap, and Losing with Effing Aces

Just sick. I am going through one of those sickass runs lately where I have lost I think 8 of my last 10 times being dealt pocket Aces in tournament play. As has happened to me before, three of those 8 losses with AA have been to KK. For those of you who have not had the opportunity to experience this, let me tell you, losing with AA to KK allin preflop in a big spot in a tournament three times in a week is a simply brilliant feeling. I mean, proudly showing your KK and then seeing your opponent flip up AA feels bad enough as it is, but losing when you're the one with the AA and he has the KK is far, far worse. Have that happen to you three times in a one-week span and let's see how many of you are still playing online poker. The worst of my three AA to KK losses happened a week ago in the nightly $75 buyin 25k guaranteed tournament, and naturally it was right on the money bubble after lasting through about 90% of the field. I was probably in 40th place of 85 players remaining, and I got it allin before the flop against a guy I knew was on KK before I even put in that last raise thanks to his very unusual preflop minreraise. So instead of being top 10 in the tournament and clearly ITM, IGH just 3 players short of the money after playing great and patiently awaiting my turn all through the night to finally get some big cards. Sick.

But it's not just KK that I've been losing to with AA recently. And btw not once of these 8 beats have I slow-played myself to lay some of the blame on me. I don't slow-play AA as a rule, and if I ever were to, I don't lose with it on a bad flop for me either. These have just all been hardcore effoffs of the worst kind, one after another after another. And when you get AA, or any premium pairs for that matter, as infrequently as I seem to, you simply cannot afford to get burned again and again and again with the best of 'em and expect to be running deep into many tournaments. Last night in the MATH for example, I was dealt AA in early position about 25, 30 minutes in, and I had the fortune of playing against a guy who was clearly in aggro-tilt mode after his 76o and 65o failed to hold up against my "Ace-rag" as he described them in separate hands. He had been making snappy comments at a lot of the players at the table after most of the hands he did not win, and his stack was short and it was obvious that he was heading for an early disaster. So, after I sneakily smooth called an early position raise with my AA preflop, hoping for this very player to reraise given his tilt session at my table, and then when he did in fact reraise, I went and just smooth-called his reraise again into what was now a heads-up pot, knowing he would push allin on any flop and I could just snap him off there on all but the scariest of flops. The flop came pretty raggy -- K92 rainbow or some shiat like that, and he pushed immediately. I called and showed my Aces, and he flipped up? The Hammer. Misplayed as per usual when it's not me playing it, but what can I do? As I almost always say after I don't win a blonkament, I could not paint a better picture for myself here, allin against a guy who played exactly how I envisioned he would when I masterminded my AA play since before the flop. Anyways, long story short, another 2 on the river and IGH to the 5-outer by the aggro tilt monkey.

Now don't get me wrong, I always like me a good Hammer suckout. But it's just not every day that you get to see the Hammer take down AA, and even less so when it is played as obviously as it was last night, and taken advantage of as badly as I did. But what can I do. AA goes down to the Hammer suckout early and IGH in 27th of the 33 runners who came out to play the MATH this week. Btw I am really pleased with the crowds we've had of late, which are a good twice as large as when we started the year in 2007 with our usual 16-18 players, so I am really happy about that and that people seem to be responding to the change to 6-max nlh format. It is definitely a nice change now that we have blonkaments five nights a week and them some, to have a shorthanded tournament in addition to all the regular nlh we have going on every week. And plus, the shorthanded tournaments have been moving faster, and thus ending a little bit earlier, which is always good for everyone as well. Some have commented that 6-max makes the tournament more of a luckfest -- I do not agree with that statement. Especially with this tournament being a double-stack -- where it will stay btw -- the 6-max does make the game more aggro, but that is a change for the better and not the worse as far as I'm concerned. But I don't think changing to 6-max makes a tournament more luckfestian, not in the way that making it a turbo or something similar would do. 6-max is definitely a different game than ring tournament poker, more aggro, more loose, and more read-dependent, but to me and apparently to a lot of you out there, that is a fun thing and everyone appears to be enjoying it which makes me happy for the change.

Anyways, so we had 33 runners for a $792 total prize pool in this week's MATH tournament. The field included some new or at least fairly new faces which I always like to see -- people like marpet1 and DOC Schwizz, as well as schlepp571 whom I recognize from some recent blonkaments but am not even sure if this was his first Hoy tournament. I don't know these people but welcome to you all, this may be your first time or near first for you all at the MATH and we love to have you! If you guys have blogs, please leave me your links in the comments and I will get you linked up here.

In the end, here were your cashers for this week's Mondays at the Hoy tournament:

5. $71.28 -- fuel55, bounced out first once the bubble burst with TheCloser when Fuel was on a very short stack coming in to the money positions.

4. $95.04 -- thepokergrind, who surprisingly pushed allin with 44 when chitwood was on such a short stack behind him. Grind got called by a higher pair and he busted in 4th place as a result.

3. $126.72 -- chitwood, not a blogger but a nice guy (a lawyer, so that is obvious!), who pushed allin on a very short stack immediately after the hand where thepokergrind went out.

2. $182.16 -- Jordan, who entered heads-up play at a 72k - 27k chip deficit, and called off his stack with 2nd pair no kicker quickly into the heads-up session to take 2nd on the day, and his second big cash in the Hoy in just this month.

1. $316.80 -- Surflexus, who not only beats down on me but even pwns in my tournament, as his 98 beat Jordan's T7 on a K8T29 allin bet called by Jordan on the river with just his 2nd pair 7 kicker.

Congratulations to Surf, always a force whenever bloggers get together for a private tournament (the guy has won five Mookie's let us not forget) for another fine blonkament win, and for jumping out to the big early lead on the 2008 Hoy moneyboard.

And here is the updated 2008 MATH moneyboard, including this week's results:

1. surflexus $488
2. Jordan $332
3. twoblackaces $298
4. Miami Don $150
4. Astin $150
4. Mike Maloney $150
7. chitwood $127
8. VinNay $119
9. thepokergrind $95
10. bartonf $89
11. fuel55 $71
12. Hoyazo $67

Now, before I forget, some quick blog pimps that I should probably have gotten to yesterday but I wasn't really on my game since I was on vacay for the MLK holiday:

1. Everyone's favorite female blogger was at it again this weekend, as LJ took down a live $200 buyin tourney in Atlantic City after a chop which netted her just short of 12 large!! WTG LJ!! Go read all about it in a nice, detailed post here, not only for the recockulous score but for her first major poker tournament win. That is a nice feeling for sure, especially after all the big cashes but not yet winning a big tournament for LJ. Enjoy it and make sure to stop by LJ's blog and tell her how much you love her!

CK has a very nice post up this week for beginners or people who are still learning the nuances and strategy in Omaha 8 or better, which is also the game for tonight's Skill Series on full tilt at 9:30pm ET (password as always is "skillz"). So if you were afraid to play O8 with the big boys tonight on full tilt, or if you were thinking about playing and are looking to brush up on some of the finer points of the game, I have read this post and give it the full Hoyazo seal of approval. This chica knows her shizz about Omaha. Go and check it out.

Also, I am totally and completely remiss in linking to some of the best blog posts over the past couple of months, which are coming from Wes as he takes his cross-counrty NHL tour. Now, I have to admit I was shocked to read at Wes's blog that the NHL is still in existence, as I honestly thought it had closed up shop after the last strike / lockout / whateveryoucallitwhatsthedifference. I'm still not 100% believing that the NHL is actually still running, but I will give Wes the benefit of the doubt on that one because he is posting some of the finest "On the Road" type of posts I have read over the past couple of months. Of course his stankyass blog won't ever let me post a comment to tell him what a great read all of these posts are, but you really ought to get over there and check his shit out. Almost every post from a new NHL city over the past couple of months is absolutely top notch shit, and you can just tell how real and genuine the stuff is even from a quick read. Go check these posts out if you have not already (do you live under a rock or what?) and you will not be disappointed, Wes is doing an amazing job of capturing the essence of each of his trips to a new city in this glorious country of ours, while still keeping his sorta country-boy-from-South-Dakota perspective on things. His blog lately is sheer brilliance.

Btw am I the only person who thinks this recockulous idiocy with Tony Dungy is a complete waste of everyone's time? WTF? I won't even link that stoopid story, but the basic gist is that Dungy felt the need to hold a press conference earlier this week to announce to the world that he is not going to leave his coaching job of the Indianapolis Colts. I got news for ya Dungy -- until this current NFL season, your team has had the most talent of any team in the NFL bar none, and you've been to precisely one superbowl. You've been hands-down the best team in the AFC for several years running until this year, and you haven't done shit with it. If you are white, your job is in serious jeopardy after yet another early-playoffs bustout this year. So don't go telling anyone that you're considering leaving your job for your family. Nobody bought this anushead, not for one second. The day you leave that team a year after winning the superbowl is the day hell freezes over. And although I'm sure the part of hell that lies under New York City was getting pretty frosty this past weekend, it ain't frozen and you Mr. Dungy were never even considering leaving Indy. So stop being an asshole, and start focusing on getting your fucking team and your all-time quarterback to play at least somewhere near its potential instead of the opposite please and thank you. Jackass. I almost called him "blackass" there, but then I guess I would be called a racist even though I would really just be commenting on the color of his skin and combining it with his quality as a coach. I guess let's stick with "jackass" there, as long as you all know what I was really thinking when I wrote this. OK good.

Btw speaking of sports, thanks to my highlariously poor track record on the maybe 10 or 12 sports bets I have ever made in my life, I am already down the $11 buyin to the Mookie this week thanks to my beloved Georgetown Hoyas shitting the bed against the despicable Syracuse Orange last night. In the end, we won the game in overtime after both teams tried incredibly hard to lose for two 20-minute halves and 5 minutes of overtime, but I foolishly agreed to bet filthy Syracuse alum ck -- who has quite a store of sports knowledge for those of you wondering -- using the Vegas line of Hoyas + 12 for the game between our respective alma maters, and that now marks the second time out of two attempts where I have lost money to another blogger betting on Georgetown. Of course when I finally decide to adjust and bet against my boys in blue and gray, that's when they will bust out with a huge stomping like they did against 13-3 Notre Dame this past weekend. So I'ma try to lay off the Georgetown bets for the rest of this year, but we'll see how well that happens. Still, F you Syracuse your team blows ass.

Oh one other thing -- I have decided for various reasons to reopen my account a bit at pokerstars. For now I still plan to play a lot on full tilt, but I've come to the realization that I am simply giving full tilt way too much free advertising and there's just no reason to do that without getting something in return from them. And so far I have been pretty dam unimpressed with full tilt's reaction to an interest from me in doing some kind of "official" promotion of them on my site. So there is just no reason for me to shill for them every day exclusively like I do. So I played a bit on pokerstars this weekend, took a sick beat (with AA allin preflop) in my very first tournament there (imagine that!), but I also won a small tournament and a satellite there so it's not all bad. It takes some adjusting to pokerstars' clearly worse interface (how in this day and age can a poker site not have a "bet pot" button for example?), but I am determined to give the king of river beats another shot and see if things have improved, how the nightly mtt schedule looks and what kind of weekly and other tournaments they have running to maybe lure me back to play some over there. Not that full tilt will ever know the difference or pay any attention to me not exclusively shilling for them for free, but I do get a lot of readers and while I defend to the hilt full tilt's right to treat me however they want from an affiliate perspective, I defend equally strongly my right to react however I see fit to that treatment. So yeah it's not that full tilt will know, but I will know and I'm tried of being bothered by that.

OK that's all for today. One of these days I am determined to do a post on how to actually play the Hammer profitably in blonkaments, since I say with a little bit of pride that I clearly play it consistently better than anybody else. I probably win and show the hammer preflop and on the flop a good 3 or 4 times on average in every blonkament, many of which I am winning or performing well in along the way, and I almost never ever lose with it except with a short stack in a tournament. None of you clowns play this thing like me, which is perpetually surprising to me because I find the Hammer to be one of the easiest hands to play profitably in all of poker. I play it in "real" tournaments as anyone who rails me a lot knows, be it in the first 10 minutes, on the bubble and even at final tables with all the money on the line, and I play it with some frequency in sngs as well. Cash, not so much, but otherwise I truly am the Hammer Player and one of these days I will help share my wisdom of how you too can look cool in front of your blogger friends without almost ever being the guy who has to suck out with it in order to survive.

Don't forget the latest Skill Series tournament, Tuesday night at 9:30pm ET on full tilt, password is "skillz". The game tonight is O8, which I won in Riverchasers a couple of weeks back by flopping a lot of big draws and then hitting basically all of them. Good times.

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Blogger Chad C said...

Couple Dungy points I think you missed:

1. Jon Gruden won the Super Bowl with Dungy's team the same year he got fired in Tampa Bay. What does that tell you?

2. They shouldn't even of been in last years Super Bowl. They two outted a wore out Pats team who had a nice lead at half time on them. had the Pats not bad beat SD the week prior SD would of rolled INDY last year.

3. Any coach with average abilities would of won 3-4 Super Bowls with the teams he has had IMO.

11:29 PM  
Blogger Shrike said...

The tilt came from losing with JJ vs. AT, Hoy. Nothing else.

11:34 PM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

Chad, I agree 100%. This business with Dungy is a complete joke. They should be looking into getting rid of him, not the other way around. And I don't believe for a second the guy would ever consider leaving Peyton Manning and this team just so he can take a year off and then come back and coach who? The shitChiefs? The crapLions? What a waste of everyone's time.

Shrike -- I think that alone speaks volumes, that one loss with medium pair JJ to an Ace on the board tilts you. Even I don't tilt from that kind of beat anymore -- not even from KK losing to A2 who called my preflop raise -- and it just didn't seem like a big deal to me. I would suggest you were kinda tilted even before that point whether you realize it or not. Either way like I said I enjoy a good Hammer suckout and I'm glad it was the Hammer and not KK like I've been crushed by with AA again and again lately. But dam you did seem off your usual game right from the getgo last night, don't you think?

11:50 PM  
Blogger donkeypuncher said...

I actually like the lack of a "bet pot" button at Stars. The presence of the button makes bad players play better than they are, as they don't have to think about how much to bet. Unless they're really bad and choose to bet the min instead.

12:23 AM  
Blogger Shrike said...

No question, I did not have my "A" game last night Hoy. No argument there. I'm going to write up a blog post partly because last night's MATH: I need to get some thoughts down on paper about maintaining focus and concentration, or regaining the necessary poker mindset when you are at the table(s) and not playing anywhere near your best poker.

12:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ironic Dungy makes his announcement on MLK day too. Pathetic. If he were white he'd have been fired from two jobs already.

At least he gets some brothers to vote republican though!

1:27 AM  
Blogger Mike Maloney said...

I'm sad my runner-runner straight knockout in the $75 Token Tourney didn't result in a story about how it put you on tilt for the rest of the night.

Oh, and by the way I'm re-watching Season 1 of LOST for refresher purposes, I wrote a bit about some thoughts I had the second time around, hopefully I can write some more once I get further in.

1:30 AM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

Yeah Mike that was hideous man.

Sorry, it's a goal for the year not to tilt so easily and pretty much nothing in the token frenzy gets to me so much anymore. But that was pretty effing horrible; I thought your blog post last night pretty much summed it up. Like I said, I blame Bayne.

1:38 AM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

Donkeypuncher, that is seriously a very interesting comment about the no "bet pot" button on Stars, and not something I have ever thought about before.

It annoys the piss out of me though, because I always want to bet the pot or at least close to it, and instead now I have to type the shit in all the time or drag the stupid scrollbar over. Yes it only adds about 0.3 seconds to every bet I make, but as you know I like to bet n raise quite a bit. I bet I will die like 2 hours earlier just from all the dragging and typing I do to make my normal bets if I start playing more at Stars again.

1:40 AM  
Blogger BWoP said...

I would type "Let's Go Orange", but I agree with you.

Neither team deserved the win in that game.

I miss the good old days of 'Cuse / G-Town match-ups.

Watching the 1985 game before last night's game was classic.

2:03 AM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

For anyone who actually cares about this (doubtful), my account of the final hand of the MATH last night is of course 100% correct.

Not sure why anyone would think I made them look like they played it poorly, well or anything in between. I merely reported the facts as they happened.

Jordan if you feel you played it well, that is great. I didn't say otherwise. I didn't pass any judgment on the hand in question, merely reported the facts as they accurately happened. You had a big bet at the end and could either have folded your 2nd pair 7 kicker or called it. You chose to call and he had rivered two pair as I showed in my post.

Just the facts, ma'am.

Can't you at least doctor a hand history for us or something? Geez you guys are getting lazy.

3:58 AM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

And also Jordan, what's with the "not surprisingly" comment? Have I really spent an ounce of my time making you of all people look bad on my blog (or yours) in my entire life? I'm trying to think if I've ever questioned a play you've made here ever.

And I guess you have lots of hand histories to back up your statement that I would call down my stack after the river card with 2nd pair 7 kicker, right?

When did my blog become the place for people to embarrass themselves publicly? Is there something I am doing to engender this kind of behavior?

4:01 AM  
Blogger HighOnPoker said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

4:02 AM  
Blogger HighOnPoker said...

I retract all of my statements. Let's be honest, Hoy, it really isn't worth arguing over this shit. Sorry I even brought it up. Impulsive commenting.

4:12 AM  
Blogger Chad C said...

HOY, you are the biggest anus head blogger of all time!! How dare you post anything that might offend anyone on YOUR blog. Where do you think you are, America or something?

4:14 AM  
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2:46 PM  

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