Monday, January 09, 2006

Poker Weekend

Overall, definitely a good weekend playing poker. I barely got to play on Friday night as I was doing other things and then fell asleep early. But Saturday was a somewhat historic day for me, in two key ways. First, I won my first ever tournament at Full Tilt poker. As I wrote earlier, I've been using ftp less than a week, and I have to say I continue to be impressed with the interface, the game play and just the overall experience. Anyways, I had lost my first few sng's on FTP, most of which were one-table jobs where the top 3 finishers get paid where I ended up bubbling. One thing I have definitely noticed about ftp is that, once these sng get one spot out of the money, the game tends to tighten up like my belt on Thanksgiving. Now, some degree of this is fine, normal and expected, but for whatever reason I find the ftp sng's to really push it, and in fact they almost become annoying at how tight/slow the games seem to get when four-handed near the money. Anyways, after probably taking 25 minutes to bust the first 5 players and get down to 4-handed, we must have played another 30 minutes just trading chips around among the final 4 players. Finally after a good half hour and not seeming any closer to making the money because the game had deteriorated into fold-fold-raise-fold, fold-fold-raise-fold, fold-fold-raise-fold every single hand, I decided I had to do something to generate some action. So, starting about 30 minutes into 4-handed, with no majorly short stack, I began showing my cards Every Single Time I won a hand. At first it didn't seem to do much, but maybe 10 or 15 minutes later, people started calling not only me but each other noticeably more frequently, and I know this was directly related to me getting a call from the then short stack when I picked up 6s a few minutes later. Moreover, it must have contributed to his willingness to make a small initial raise with his crappy J-10 offsuit, which I raised with my 6s and then he called. Needless to say, since this wasn't on pokerstars, my pocket pair held up and we were in the money. At that point the next guy went out fast, also to me when my 99 held up against KQs, and I was in the final two with a solid chip lead. After continuing to show all of my hands that won, it took maybe only 5 more minutes for him to push on me when I was holding A9o, at a time when I had probably a nearly 3 to 1 chip lead. I considered briefly and then figured What the hell and called. He flipped A6, and the rest is history. Not a huge amount of money for me, but again my first ever ftp win, the first of a great many hopefully! ;)

Also on Saturday night, my horrendous streak of bad losses on pokerstars came to a crashing end when, motivated by my full-table sng success on ftp, my buddy V managed to convince me to play a $10 buyin, 9-player sng on ps. Long story short, not only did I not get bad beat out of the thing, but I won it. This tournament also got tighter than it needed to get when down to 4-handed, but ultimately the hand-showing thing was necessary as a consistent strategy because the gameplay on ps just seems generally faster to me, and wasn't quite as annoying. Plus, the fishness of ps eventually came through, and we were down to the money without too too long with 4 players. I forget the key hands that brought me the win, but suffice it to say that me winning ANYTHING on ps at this point was a Huge statement for me, and again reconfirms that my horrific streak of beats is finally at an end. Mercifully.

To further confirm this, on Sunday night I entered the $2 buyin large tourney on ps, after i let V talk me into first entering an $11 buyin, 45 person turbo sng. I almost Never play the turbo tourneys on ps or any other site, because the whole idea of a turbo tournament goes against the skill players, those who make good reads and smart bets, and those tight-aggressive types who are willing to wait for the good hands and then move with them. But V prevailed and I entered. After making it down to 24 people remaining, I was dealt A-10 of clubs in late position, and when it was my turn there was only one limper in the pot, so I moved in with what was then a short stack on my part (M of about 7). I read the limper for weakness and figured I could really use the blinds and his stack. Well, the BB ends up calling my allin, and then so did the limper. Not good news for my A10, not anyways until they flipped KJ suited from the BB, and KQ offsuit from the early limper. How these zobos could call my allin with these cards is beyond me, but I guess that's what ps is all about. There are just more nemo's there than anywhere else I've ever seen, and they seem to perform better on ps than anywhere as well. Anyways, true to form, my solid favorite hand ended this showdown in a distant third after a K and a J both flopped. Yes, even though I had the best cards going in, AND each of my opponents already had one of their Kings counterfeited in the other's hand, one still flopped with no ace, and I was out, wondering if ps was ready to start another stoopid streak of killings.

Anyways despite all this, I entered the $2 buyin tourney on ps afterwards because I love the big tourneys and don't always want to risk $10 or $20 or more with the odds of fish sugging out on me there. Long story short, I easily made the cash out of 1201 entrants, and was as high as 3rd place with about 120 players remaining. With a couple of friends looking on, I made the third break, grabbed one more beer, and as we crossed the 50 players remaining threshhold, I had the "good fortune" to be dealt pocket Kings. Now, despite me always losing to aces with this hand, I had to play aggressively at this point in the tournament, so in late position with all folds around to me, I raised 4x the big blind, hoping for a call or especially a reraise to I could push. Well, the SB thought and thought, and then moved me in for all my chips. Though of course I suspected aces, no WAY I was throwing that hand away, so I called, and imagine my surprise when this ass flips over 2-4 offsuit!! I was thrilled and counted my chips, seeing that I was about to be vaulted back into 3rd place with under 50 players remaining. That is, until the flop comes 2-6-2. How convenient. Then to add insult to injury, the turn is a 4, ending my tournament in 49th place, and of course leaving that (all too) familiar bad taste in my mouth. I mean, this guy is beyond donkey to push with that kind of a hand. If he wanted to make a play, fine, wait until you have K8 or Q-10 at least, so you have SOME kind of a hand if you get played with. But then I guess, why bother when you have ps on your side, software that is designed to help the fish and the suckerouters do their thing. I hope ps knows what theyre doing, because as soon as the blogging community gets their act together and gets the periodic blogger tourneys off of ps and onto a legitimate poker site, I am cashed out for good from that evil, funking bitch.

Anybody else lose in a key position late in a big tournament with a hand like KK to a hand like 24o? What the fucking fuck.


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