Wednesday, December 06, 2006

The Rant That Changed Everything

No this is not a fresh new crazy rant post like last Tuesday after my elimination from Mondays at the Hoy. But I do need to chat about that rant post for just a few more minutes. I've been hinting at this over my last few posts, but I am telling you, from the minute I uploaded that rant, my no-limit holdem tournament performance has improved. Significantly. I have definitely never heard of posting a megarant as a way to appease angry poker gods, but I am thinking it is time we start adding this to the list.

What is my argument for this outrageous claim, you ask? Can I show you any proof, you want to know?

I'd love to.

First of all, think back to that post from last Wednesday, where I detailed my run to 16th place out of 1535 players in the 25k guaranteed tournament. That was the very first tournament I played in after going off in my blog on Tuesday night, and if you recall, it included me being dealt pocket Aces two or three times, AK about 8 times, and pocket Kings at least 8 times on my way to by far my deepest finish in the 25k since this past summer.

On that same night, I also played in the Mookie, where I final tabled and cashed in that tournament as well, for my first real blogger cash in a few weeks. When I say "real" blogger cash, I am referring only to the size of the field involved, and as I've posted here several times this year, the Mookie has become one of the very biggest. So this was meaningful to me, coming exactly one day after my rant was done, and with all the great cards and great flops I got, the whole thing just seemed very different than what I had become used to of late with my nlh tournament game.

Fast forward a couple of days to Sunday night, the next time I was able to put in any significant action on the nlh tournament front. I took my next shot at the 25k since my 16th place last week, except that on Sunday it's a 35k and not a 25k, and as I mentioned briefly yesterday I managed to cash again:

I went out in 154th place overall out of 1821 players, probably the second-largest field I ever recall for this nightly 10pm ET tournament, which was well into the cash, and again if you read here then you know how truly odd it would be for me to cash twice in a row in this event. And this time, while I did not get crazy starting cards thrown at my forehead all night, I certainly managed to get the right cards at just the right time, including at least two allin suckouts during the event to help propel me into the money and beyond for a nice run, again my best showing in this tournament in several weeks other than last week's run to 16th place.

At the same time on Sunday night as I was playing in my second 25k (35k) guaranteed STR (Since The Rant), I also played in my second blogger tournament STR (the first having been my Mookie cash last week), Don's Big Game. And once again I played great, and got the cards just when I needed them to make a nice run. In the end I outlasted a tough run from Maudie and a particularly long and tight bubble period to make 3rd place in the end, cashing for $179 for my first ever money score in the short life so far of the Big Game.

OK so STR, that is two 25k tournaments and two cashes, plus two blogger tournaments and two cashes. Hmmmm. Coincidence? I highly doubt that.

OK so then here we are at Monday night. It's my next shot in the Hoy tournament since Wes made the call of my preflop allin reraise with AQo that would set me off on the very rage that led to The Rant to begin with, and I was determined to make it count. Unfortunately, my streak of consecutive nlh tournament cashes was to stop at 4. For the first time in a while I did not have a premium hand dealt to me throughout my time in the tournament -- not even AK one time -- and as a result my tournament was fraught with reraises with hands like 88 and AQ (my new favorite hand of course), as well as lots of thievery and just general aggressive play and bluffing rather than solid cards. And as is usually the case, with no cards to back it up, this strategy, although necessary in some tournaments, typically succumbs in the end to strong play from people with strong cards, and that's exactly what happened to me when I ended up pushing JJ on a raggy flop into what turned out to be Fishy Mcdonk's pocket Kings, and IGH in 6th place overall in the Hoy. Still, another blogger final table, which makes 3 final tables (2 cashes) in 3 blogger events STR. And congratulations to Jordan for winning I believe his first Hoy tournament title, as well as to Donnie for his 2nd place finish, and of course to my hero Wes for taking down third place to round out the cash positions for this event:

And lastly, last night I also took my third shot at the full tilt 25k guaranteed tournament STR, having cashed in the first two, and once again it was like I was living a charmed life. Again I did not get the incredible starting cards that I had on my run to 16th place last week, but I got just enough to survive, survive and survive some more, enough to get me at least down near the cash as the third hour of play began, with me just 8 spots from the bottom of the remaining players in the tournament. And that's when the suckouts began. But not the normal suckouts that knock me out of tournaments. No, I'm talking about the opposite kind of suckouts, the ones that keep me in tournaments and help me make a run into the cash.

So, for example, there was this hand, which actually occurred early in the second hour of the 25k, where I got it allin preflop and ended up being dominated heading into the flop:

You gotta love the runnerrunnerrunnerrunner flushes. Except when the current world champion lays one of those on me during the WSOP. But that's another story for another day.

Then here we are again, this one near the end of the second hour where I once again got allin preflop after trying to steal the blinds preflop and then being obligated to call my opponent's small raise for the rest of his chips. Of cours, the actual starting hand that I had made this suckout all the sweeter, if I don't say so myself:

With the help of suckouts like these, the kinds of plays that it feels like I haven't seen even one of for months in the 25k, I managed to hold on until the money spots began with 261 players remaining in the tournament, making my third straight cash in the 25k, all STR. Coincidence? Again, I think not. In fact, even after making the cash in my third straight attempt, I still got to experience some really incredible suckouts to keep my run going. Here was one about 30 or 40 spots ITM that helped me to stay alive for at least another few orbits, where again I got it allin preflop and saw that I was severely dominated heading into the flop:

Unreal. I go three months without seeing one of these, and now suddenly I'm winning my 20% underdogs as if they are 80% favorites. The poker gods love me these days, I'm telling you. It was the rant. They obviously love ranting. I swear I have to do that more often.

Speaking of more often, here was yet another suckout, this one about 100 or so players past the cash positions, where at least here I had a little over a 40% chance heading into the flop, although still a hand where I would have had virtually no chance of winning if this were BTR (Before The Rant), but in STR world, I'm all good:

Despite clearly being the poker gods' best friend these days, eventually even my luck has to run out, and in last night's case that point occurred when I pushed with 53o from the big blind against a guy I knew was stealing. He donkey-called me with J9s, but when on to hit a Jack on the flop, and IGH in 99th place out of 1639 entrants:

for as I said my third consecutive cash in the nightly 25k guaranteed tournament on full tilt. It has literally been months since the last time (if ever) I cashed three consecutive tries in this or any large mtt, so I really have to pay homage to the poker gods who have been singlehandedly lifting me above the typical odds situations most of you normals have to deal with on a regular basis in large mtt's. Take it from me, it really is preferable to have the gods pulling for you -- I would know, having been decidedly on both sides of that equation over recent weeks and months.

Hopefully this streak will continue -- even despite me openly proclaiming myself to be a friend of the poker gods STR -- as I continue to play my games during this week and beyond. Tonight I will probably miss Wil's weekly WWdN tournament on pokerstars at 8:30pm ET (password as always is "monkey") as I have for the past several weeks, but I should be on for my nightly donkeycash in the 25k as well as for that 10:15pm ET HORSE mtt on full tilt that I've grown to enjoy so much. I've final tabled that thing twice already, most recently a few Saturdays back along with Maigrey who made it I believe to 4th place overall, but lately I've been bubble boy in that event as I seem to hit some bad cards and bad suckouts right as the cash positions are drawing nigh, so hopefully I can avoid that same outcome tonight. I may also hit up the cash nlh tables again after my very successful run at 1-2 nlh this past weekend with Smokkee as a witness to my greatness. If anyone is up for some 1-2 nlh cash action, hit me up on the girly chat tonight and I bet I can be convinced to jump back in there tonight.


Blogger smokkee said...

all those guys are ranting on their own blogs about the suckouts you laid on 'em.

5:29 AM  
Blogger Jordan said...

Good stuff, Hoy. I'm not surprised in the least that it all turned around for you. On a side note, this is actually my 2nd Hoy win, the first on happening on 8/21/06.

6:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice turnaround Hoy. You just needed to take a little mental dump there and now you're headed back to the buffet.

Incidentally, regarding suckouts, I had FOUR in a SNG last night where I won w/K10 vs. Ax (four-flush w/my king), Q10 vs. Ax (paired my 10), 88 vs. 99 (we split when the board made better 2 pair & kicker), and A4 vs QQ (my four made a 7-high straight). Ended up taking 2nd place when I should've gone out 6th. I won't apologize, though. I think I had some karma in the bank.

Keep up the great work!

2:54 AM  

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