Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Another Hoy Tournament In the Books

Yep, last night was another Mondays at the Hoy tournament, bringing out our usual 20 players to round out our usual $400 prize pool for the top 3 finishers. And yep, last night saw me get royally phucked once again, actually by the same guy, Mattazuma, who recently busted me from the Hoy by calling my preflop allin with his KJo. Mr. Subliminal recently referred in his blog to my post after Mattazuma'a KJo elimination of me a couple of months back as a rant in which I got pretty personal in my attacks, but I completely disagree. I actually went out of my way after that horrific untimely call on Matt's part not to get personal, but instead to just try my best to make my argument for why I did not (and do not) think it is a wise move to call an allin preflop with a hand like KJo. Well, I'm going to try to do the same thing here, as last night Mattazuma once again eliminated me on a hand which I would have certainly played much differently than he did before the flop. But I still think Matt is a good guy, I love that he comes out and plays the Hoy, and I enjoy reading his blog, so I will once again attempt to restrain my furious rage hurt feelings and stick simply to the facts and to my rational arguments for and against certain plays.

So this is maybe 15 or 20 minutes into the Hoy last night, and after donking a bit of my stack to Astin in the earlygoing, I had just managed to win a large pot from NewinNov when I flop-checked my pocket Queens on a raggy board, and Newin moved allin with just A4 on a board of 942 rainbow. On the very next hand, I am dealt pocket Aces.

As I wrote about on Cardsquad today, I absolutely love being dealt pocket Aces in this situation. Actually, I love pocket Aces in any situation, but in this case it is especially good because I had just won a big pot on the very preceding hand, with a big hand like pocket Queens. Given that I have an aggressive reputation among the blogger crew (no idea where that comes from!), I know that a lot of this group will not necessarily put me on any cards of real value on the very next hand after I win a big pot. In reality of course I can't remember the last time I automatically played a hand hard just because I had won a big hand right beforehand, but I know this is how people think, so I was salivating at the thought of making someone over-commit to this pot early, with my pocket Aces trap just waiting to be sprung once I had someone allin.

Then a funny thing happened. Fuel limped for 50 chips from UTG+1, and then Julius Goat followed that from UTG+2 with a raise to 200 chips, all before the action even got to me before the flop. Of course, I could not be happier, and with still four players left to act after me, and a lot of aggression already in there ahead of me preflop, I had to figure out how best to play this hand:

In the end, I opted to go for my patented slow-raise maneuver, where I put in a big enough raise to chase out the shit hands, leaving only hands that I will have dominated, while also not raising so much that I chase everyone else out of the pot. Of course I could have just moved allin here, but I really didn't want to chase everyone else out. Ideally I would have bet enough that just one or two other players would have called, and then I could do my thang to dupe them for the rest of their chips on the flop, barring any disastrous flop like 3 suited and/or big cards, etc. So I did my slow-raise, knowing that the avid readers of my blog would know from this move to get the hell outta there right away, but hoping I could trick some of the less regular readers into paying me off in a big way and staking me to the huge early stack:

To my extreme surprise (and joy!), Mattazuma acted just after me and re-reraised to 1200 chips. I could not believe my luck. Matt had to have pocket Kings with a re-reraise like that, as I had the Aces already, and even Big Slick can't be played this aggressively when there is already an EP limper, an EP 4x raiser and then a reraiser in there from MP ahead of you before the flop. Apparently Fuel and the Goat also got the message, as they both folded their hands. Of course, when the action got back to me, I did what I had to do:

Matt insta-called, and he flips over....

Pocket Jacks.

Now, and I'm going to be kinda straightforward here, this is simply not a good play. Pocket Jacks is, of course, the fourth-best starting hand in no-limit holdem. Even if you want to put AKs ahead of it -- which I do not -- then fine, it's still top 5 among all possible starting hands. So on the one hand, it might be tempting to just push hard like this with it in Matt's position before the flop. I could understand that logic, if this were limit holdem maybe (not even really then), or if you knew nothing about your opponents' hands when the action gets around to you before the flop.

But that right there is the rub. In this case, Matt knew an awful lot about his opponents' hands when he made this decision. He knew that Fuel liked his hand enough to limp from UTG+1. He also knew that Goat liked his hand enough to raise 4x from EP, even with a UTG+1 limper already in the pot ahead of him. Then, he also knew that I liked my own hand enough to put in a re-reraise to 500 chips, also from MP and with 4 players left to act behind me, and even knowing there was already an EP limper and an EP 4x raiser in the pot ahead of me. Now think for a minute if you're Matt here, what do you think about your pocket Jacks?

Let's assume that Fuel didn't have much. Of course, an EP limper is often in there with a decent pocket pair or strong Ace, just trying to get some LP raisers so he can reraise allin. I make this move fairly regularly when I am dealt a strong hand in early position, but let's for the sake of argument assume that Fuel's limp was weak, and just an attempt to see a cheap flop, which is not a terrible assumption given all the other action so far before the flop in this hand. But Goat's 4x raise from EP following an open-limper from UTG+1 has got to worry Matt here. He could have AA, KK or QQ, in which case Matt is a 20% underdog. Or, Goat could be on AK or AQ (or even KQ is he's playing donkish), all of which are basically 50-50 shots against Matt's pocket Jacks. The thing is, the raise here from EP with a limper already in the pot is definitely indicative of a strong hand, and it's really not reasonable to think he is weak here, like one might think Fuel is who just open-limped into this pot. I would think that the worst hand Goat could reasonably have here is something like pocket Tens, or maybe pocket 9s. If he's any kind of a player, he's not raising 4x there without at least a pocket pair 9s or Tens (or higher), or AK (or AQ if hes a nut).

Then I came in there with a nice-sized reraise to 500 chips. Now at this point, if Matt doesn't know his Jacks are beat by at least somebody, then he's just not paying attention. I mean, let's assume the absolute donkiest thing I can have here is AK, or a big pocket pair. No way I'm in there with less than that. And if I'm re-reraising here with AK, then I would have to be a total donkey. [Which I'm not of course.] So, Matt has pocket Jacks, and he's facing a UTG+1 limp, a UTG+2 4x raise, and an MP reraise of 2.5x more, to 10x the big blind. He's got pocket Jacks. Isn't somebody bound to be ahead of him here? How possible is it that nobody is at least racing 50-50 with him at this point, given the action before the flop so far? What would you do here? It's almost too much to just flat call, but it can be difficult to fold pocket Jacks before the flop under any circumstances. Do you fold? Smooth call? Reraise big?

As I mentioned above, Matt opted for the latter, Fuel and Goat folded, and I of course put him allin, which he clearly had to call for another 500 chips or so, and here were are:

It's always nice when you get rewarded for making a good play preflop, and when the guy making the highly questionable call gets his just desserts. Pokerstars, of course, loves to reward the better play in this situation:

Ha ha pokerstars you phucking bitch!!! Nice river card asscock. And IGH in 16th place out of 20 players. Nice, huh? Does pokerstars love me lately or what? All this goes to show that pokerstars really doesn't want me to play the Hoy there anymore. We'll see if that's going to change anytime soon. I'm definitely thinking about it.

In related news, I cashed in my first tournament in five days last night. This was one of these new $8.80 buyin, 360-max mtt's on pokerstars, and it was actually in Omaha Hi/Lo 8 or Better. This might have been one of my first deep cashes in a straight O8 tournament in my career, as this is the one game that I enjoy playing the least among all the poker variants I play regularly online (which is all of them, I think). It's funny, because a lot of multi-game specialists out there like Drizz and Maigrey seem to love playing O8 tournaments. Generally, I do not enjoy them, whereas I absolutely love playing Omaha High tournaments, a game I've gotten really into over the past few months, and which I have cashed in several times in some of the regular full tilt and pokerstars offerings for PLO. I don't know what it is about O8. It's not that I don't like the split games, because I've always loved 7-stud hilo and still do today. For some reason, unlike stud hilo, I guess I just think it's kinda stupid how all you often need to do to win the low in O8 is to have A2 in your starting hand. Period. 3 low cards on the board, and your A2 automatically wins half the pot, just like that. It's not like stud hilo or razz, where you need to make a qualifying 5-card low with at least 2 or 3 more cards in addition to what you're starting with in your hand, and that makes for a lot of strategy and decisionmaking along the way even if you're just playing for the low in those games. Not that there isn't some of that as well in O8, as far as if less than three low cards come out on the flop, but there is something about the simplicity of winning the low in O8 that just kinda seems robotic to me, and generally I'm not into that characteristic in the poker games I play. That said, I did make my first cash last night after several bubble runs deep into mtts this week, coming in 17th place out of 360 players in this O8 tournament, and winning about 4 times my buyin for the process, thereby making it basically free to have been ass raped by pokerstars in the Hoy last night, so at least I have that to take a positive spin on things.

And really, what more can any of us ask in any given night, than to be anally raped for free, right? Phucking pokerstars. Unbelievable.

No WWdN for me tonight, as I won't be able to log on until after Wil's 8:30pm ET start time on fuckerstars (password is "monkey" as always), but go check the WWdN out and make a run at poker immortality by knocking out Wil himself and getting your name in lights in the title of next Tuesday's WWdN tournament. And also, look for a WWdN Second Chance tournament at 10:30pm ET or so, which there has been the last couple of weeks as well, and which I will try to play if I'm able to get on in time for the festivities. See you then (maybe)!


Blogger Julius_Goat said...

"I would think that the worst hand Goat could reasonably have here is something like pocket Tens, or maybe pocket 9s. If he's any kind of a player, he's not raising 4x there without at least a pocket pair 9s or Tens (or higher), or AK (or AQ if hes a nut)."

You forgot The Hammer, Hoy. You forgot The Hammer.

I think that river is proof that Lee Jones reads your blog.

11:57 PM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

Goat, one thing I find among the bloggers is that a lot of people really tend to mis-play the Hammer. While this is a great raising hand if no one else is in the pot, or maybe even in your spot there in the hand I highlighted (nice move btw, I congratulate you on the effort), every time I see someone bust from a blogger tournament with a decent stack by calling someone else's allin with the Hammer, I just cringe. The idea IMO is to use the Hammer to mix up your play and maybe tilt some bloggers, but to put your tournament life on the line with it is not the idea, at least not in my book. Anyways, nice play there, including folding after the reraise and the re-reraise behind you in the action. That's the way you play it right there.

And yeah man, Lee Jones is still mad at me for threatening to rape his children after setting myself on fire late in 2005 that got me banned repeatedly from pokerstars chat. That was back in my real tilt days. You think I'm bad now -- you have no concept of what I used to be like man.

Thanks for playing, looking forward to it again next week.

1:49 AM  
Blogger Julius_Goat said...

Raising with The Hammer and calling with The Hammer is the difference between being a Viking or being a poodle.

2:05 AM  
Blogger lucko said...

Hoyazo getting getting trappy with a big hand: Standard

Hoyazo getting sucked out on: Standard

Hoyazo bitching about it: Standard

Fuel in the chat box calling Mattazuma an idiot: CLASSIC

2:48 AM  
Blogger Dave said...

I believe I've finally figured out why PokerStars allows so many underdog hands to win.

It has to do with the amount of play and rake you give to P*s on a regular basis. Each table has a goblin assigned to it. These goblins have the task of leveling out the field based on how much "homage" has been paid to the almighty P*s coffers. If you haven't been helping to contribute regularly to the P*s coffers (ie grinding out bonuses) then your doom switch is set to "on" until such time that you've built up enough pots with big hands to sufficiently satisfy the goblins appetite for "rake".

I recently passed the required level and am now regularly winning with my Pocket Aces. The doomswitch has essentially been turned off. The closer you are to attaining the next VIP level the less likely the doomswitch is to be turned on.

So there it is. The more regularly you contribute "rake" or "homage", the more often the poker goblins will turn off your doomswitch. Simple as that.


2:56 AM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

You're so right, Lucko. Fuel did type "idiot" into the box immediately when Mattazuma flipped his cards, maybe even before he flipped his cards but just after he put in the re-reraise to 1200. That's because Fuel reads here regularly and knows full well what my reraise from 200 to 500 meant there. That was really funny though -- I didn't want to specifically point that out in my post, but it was one of the highlights.

But in the end, who's the idiot? The guy re-reraising essentially allin with pocket Jacks, or the clown who keeps playing on pokerstars when his pocket Aces can't ever hold up against lower pocket pairs, low suited connectors, the Hammer, etc? I like to think that deep down the comment is directed at ME for continuing to give pokerstars my business.

2:59 AM  
Blogger SirFWALGMan said...

Yup. It is you for sure Hoy.

4:32 AM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

Thanks, Waffles. I can't argue it, but thanks for chiming in.

But what, no haiku for me?

4:49 AM  
Blogger Mattazuma said...

Yeah, donkey-power served me well again.

Hoy, I need to learn to stay the hell out of your way.


7:38 AM  

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