Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Weekly Monday Home Game

I was not able to play much poker last night, due to time constraints when the youngest Hammer Girl awoke around 11pm and did not want to go back down easily. But, I did manage to continue my recent hot streak by winning the weekly online homegame I've been playing for a few weeks now, a private game we play Monday nights at 10pm ET on pokerstars. The game so far has included a small group of people I know from all over the country, from New York and Boston to as far as Iowa and Idaho.

Until now I haven't mentioned anything about my weekly private pokerstars game on the blog, but the players there have suggested that they'd like to get some more people involved, so I thought I would blog a little bit about it. So far Monday nights is one of the few nights where there hasn't been any consistent gathering of bloggers to play some poker. Now I'm all for people playing individually in whatever they want to do on a given night of course, but I think it might be fun to have some of my online friends play together in my game on Monday nights, to let off some steam after a weekend away from the tables, to tune up for the weekly WWdN tournament on Tuesdays, or just to have some fun with other bloggers and online poker players.

Thus, I'd like to use this space to let my readers know that I have been hosting a weekly Monday night game on pokerstars, and that we'd love to have any or all of you join in if you're ever looking for something to do with some other blogger types on a Monday night. 10pm ET will be the time every Monday, and the buyin thus far has been $10, but we may experiment with $20 just to build up the prize pool a little bit and make things maybe a little more interesting than in the other regular blogger tournaments. I certainly want to have the money be worthwhile in the event, and the feedback so far is that people might like a $20 event now and again, so we can think that over.

So far we have only played nlh, and I expect that that will probably continue, although that could also be up for discussion. Nothing is official and nothing is set in stone, but the point is, we're hoping that some people will join us for a weekly get together to start the week by playing with some friends, getting hoyed by me, and talking a lot of trash. I will post more about this as next week comes closer, but I just wanted to get this out there, and in fact if anyone has any thoughts at all as far as cool things to do with the tournament, bounty prizes, etc., please let me know in the comments and I'll see what I can do. One possible idea that my friends have suggested is that I could agree to rail the winner (or maybe whoever knocks me out every week) in an sng of their choosing, and I could do a screenshotty writeup on my blog every week of that person's performance in that sng of their choosing. I don't know if that is something that would even be attractive to people, but just in case, I am currently considering that and any other options you guys can think of.

Anyways, yesterday I won the home game tournament. I got semi-lucky with just three people left, as this setup preflop:

worked for me when the board came this way:

This put me in the chip lead heading into heads-up play, against Aquaverse, my little brother. Partially by virtue of my general holdem domination, and partially because he's my little brother, let's just say that I completely get his play. I basically know every time he is bluffing, and every time I can get him to commit. It's almost not fair for him to have to play me heads-up for the weekly title, but that's too bad, no deals are allowed in this format. So I proceeded with the mental abuse as we began heads-up play. I won 14 out of the 21 hands we played heads-up, and at that I knew that my brother was bluffing on at least half of the hands that I let him win, but I could sense that he wasn't going to fold to any reraise from me, and since I had truly nothing, folding was the best option. Finally, I am dealt AKs, I raise it up to 100 preflop, and he calls:

The flop comes:

to me, this is an almost ideal flop. It has my Ace, and no other high cards that are likely to have made two pairs for my opponent. Yet, it has two medium-high straight cards as well as two flush cards. This is key for me, in that I am hoping my opponent will have hit some kind of a draw, and will be willing to chase his draws if I can lure him in with just the right sized bets. But first, I have to make sure that Aquaverse doesn't think I've hit this board at all, and that I don't have an Ace. So I check this flop to him. Not something I would ever do in a blogger game, for example, but I'm happy to do so here as a specific ploy against a specific player whom I think I have a good handle on. He leads out for 60 chips into a 200-chip pot. Which I decide to raise. I reason that I have to raise here, in case he is in fact drawing to one of those straight or flush draws I was so happy to see on the flop. I can't let him hit one of those for just 60 chips into a 200 chip pot on the flop. But, I want him to think he is ahead if he, for example, is holding an Ace himself here but with a smaller kicker than my top kicker. So, I bump it, only slightly, laying the trap for my own little brother:

He calls my minraise, but I can tell that he still likes what he has for some reason or another. Maybe even a straight and a flush draw, or something like that. No matter, I still figure I have got to be ahead here. Turn card comes a 5♠, a total rag unless I figure him for holding 96 and having called my preflop raise with that garbage. No way any brother of mine is calling a 4x preflop raise with just 96, sOOted or otherwise, so I can't put him on any hand that would have been helped by this card. I check again, and Aquaverse pauses momentarily before betting out 330 chips into the 500-chip pot. A smallish bet, consistent with a guy who has something (still not really sure what), and thinks he might be ahead with that something at this time. But at this point, with what I still figured had to be the best hand at the time, I figured he had sunk enough into the pot that he might be willing to take it all the way with whatever so-so hand he is holding. So I reverse hoyed him (yes I would do that to my own brother, and I didn't feel the least bit bad about it):

He calls, leaving himself with just one chip, and then the worst possible river card for me comes:

I was pissed, but obviously had to go through with the hand at that point, figuring I was losing to a 9-high straight or some non-nut flush in some way or another. I check, he bets his last chip, and I call it knowing I'm going to lose. Then we flip for the showdown:

He had been staying in all along with second pair 8s plus a King kicker. A perfectly playable hand in heads-up play, but I suppose he might have read me for some kind of Ace when I had reraised it preflop and kept sticking with his bets on the flop and turn. Anyways, long story short, this week went to me, continuing my recent hot streak in smaller tournaments, and I look forward to further extending my streak next week when we meet again for the next installment of the home game.

Meanwhile, did you ever get sucked out on twice in the same hand? Here is me being knocked out of the full tilt 17k last night, by a fishdonk who calls a preflop allin with KQs:

First he hit his King on the turn, and then to add insult to injury, he flushed anyways on the river. Why do so many of these people seem to get rewarded for their constant fishery?


Blogger smokkee said...

i'm down for the Monday night game. $20 buy-in sounds good to me. even a turbo would be fine. none of the blogger events use a turbo structure.

6:40 AM  
Blogger Iakaris aka I.A.K. said...

Monday sounds cool, and a $20 buy-in is fine, but be prepared for HammerHoys (my subtle combination of two grand blogger traditions) galore.

By the way, I hoyed in your honor tonight and took Garthmeister down. Take a look tomorrow. The rest of my game needs serious work, but it appears I am the second best Hoyer on the planet.

11:04 AM  

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