Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Never check the best hand

I went yesterday after work to Ho-Chunk. My plan was to play 3-4 hours and go to bed before midnight. Well .....
When I set at the table there was one half drunk player from Canada. He was having fun pushing $100 into $4 pot, and about $600 in chips. Most of the table were weak players waiting for a big hand. On my left I had Kevin H. a nice young guy, I met last year also at the table.

I was in for $180, and fast had another $300 re buy, but 90 minutes later I had over $900. It all came from the drunk who was playing wild. I made a few calls with only middle and bottom pair knowing he is betting any two cards. Than after I lost two big pots I had to re buy $300 again. I'm in for $780 and I see that I'm not going early to bed like I planned.

First I had pocket Aces and on the 10,10,9 board drunk made a bet followed by $50 raise. I raised another $200 ... and heard "all in". I folded fast and he showed pocket nines. After that came a long period of bad cards, and I was down to $300.

The second one was my own fault. Kevin raised pre flop. I made a nice bet on the flop hoping for one more spade. When on the turn I got the spade I checked. Don't ask me why. I put Kevin on the big pair based on his raise, and I thought he may have K or Q of spades. My check gave him a boat, so when I bet $100 he went all in. Re buy.
The drunk lost all his chips. He had two re buys and rebuild his stack again to over $1000. I changed the seat and set on his lef(seat management). Immediately I got a few nice hands, and about 12:30am cashed out $960. The drunk guy was down to $200.

The moral of the story: Never, never and absolutely never check the best hand on the turn.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Week 21-2009 Seat management

I canceled my trip to Milwaukee and Kenosha and went to Ho-Chunk. It was about 3pm and they just started a $50 buy in tournament. Rich, the floor person, asked me do I want to play. I told him I don’t like the tournament, but he repeated that he can get me in if I want it. Hmmm … I thought for a while about it and said to myself “He wants’ me to play, is this a sign I’m going to win?” So, I said “OK I’ll play.” I lasted one hour, without making a pair. Than I went all in with my A,Q and the board 8,5,4 and got eliminated by A,4 off suit. That’s why I don’t play small tournaments.

Seat management
When I got a seat at the cash game table there were some nice stacks. Surrounded with the local players the chip leader was a guy from Milwaukee in seat 9. He regularly plays at the Potawatomi Casino and you can recognize him by the long hair and the pony tail. There was over $700 in front of him. With nine players I got a seat number 8. Bobby g on my right asked me to switch seats, because he can not see the board well. Bobby is a gentleman from Madison and I agreed to accommodate him. Well … I started with 9,2; 6,2; 8,3 …. while Bobby was getting some nice pocket cards. Milwaukee guy was aggressive and raised every hand pre flop $25. I felt lost. Just by paying blinds and a few raises my stack went from $200 to $120. I have to do something, re buy or …
Than the player in seat 3 left and I said “seat change.” This when it all started.

I won a few smaller pots and started raising $20 pre flop with some nice hands. With AK of spades I got the flop J,7,6 all spades, and doubled up. Than I got a set of queens and sent the Milwaukee guy to ATM machine. I had over $600.

Seat number 2 was interesting. Two players came and left after they tripled up in abut 20 minutes. I told that observation to Swen who was on my left, and I moved to that seat. Well it’s all about the seat. I won another three big pots over $1000 each. It was not the, cards or my good play but the mistakes of my opponents.

First I got in the hand with Bobby G. and he decided that his top pair is good for all in.

Just a few hands later I flopped two pair and my opponent bet $35. I made it a hundred to see if has J,8. He called, but checked the turn card. Weak or not sure? … I went all in, and he called about $500, turned his cards and said “two pair.” He had only one pair (he never checked back his hand), but he had a flush draw.

I had a bad position and almost folded my suited 8,7 but decided to call pre flop raise by Asian guy who irritated me earlier. Then I saw the flop and didn’t know how to make him pay me. I just called his $50 bet. On the turn he made another $50 bet and looked away into big screen TV. There was no story on the board and he can guess my 8,7 …. What to do? I said all in … and he fast called for another $350, and left without showing his hand.

That was the magic seat. I cashed out $2000.

The week started hard week for me. I had so many bad beats, and some I described in previous posts: Can't Win, The Letter, and Again. I played 30 hours and made $825 thanks to a few bad plays of my opponents, but that’s all part of the game.

Free tip from Mr. Wegas: If the things are not going good, seat management is crucial at the table.

Sunday, May 24, 2009


This was a long Saturday at Ho-Chunk. I played 11 hours and made only $240.

Natalia, a tall atractive girl from Milwaukee came to my table and in the first hand got lucky.
I looked at my pair and said "pocket deu' never loo' " and raised $12 pre flop. On the turn I made a $65 bet, and when Natalia started to push all her chips in the pot I said twice "Don't". She looked at me a asked "What?". I was trying to save her $120, but she got help with the river card. Later she played a good poker, and cashed out about $700.

My roller coaster continued, win small pots, loose on the river with the made hands. I lost three times to Bud when he had A,K.

About 2am, Dino came to my table. Dino plays any two cards including 2,3 off suit, but he is much better singer than the poker player and it's always fun having him at the table. Dino and his family are members of The Rumba Kings band. After this hand Dino left. On the turn I maid $35 bet, and the guy on my right said "All in" out of turn. Dino than went all in for $96 and the other guy changed his all in to "fold".

Click here to see more of Dino and The Rumba Kings.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Letter

Dear Card Player magazine,
I didn't believe it can happen to me, but Friday night I got raped. I was playing in my friend’s home game and just couldn’t win a pot. What ever I had, it got beaten on the river.
It started with me playing three times famous Baraboo Bob’s 6,3 and getting a god flop, but the river card cost me $350. Re-buy, and one hour later I had my money back when the horror show started. After a first few bad beats I delivered some myself, and beat twice pocket Aces. Interesting it was both times against players of the Korean origin.
Tired of loosing with a good starting hands I called Charlie's pre flop raise with 4,3 and the flop was 4,3,2 and we were all in for $350 pot.
Than little later I was holding Q,Q against Tac’s A,A and got the flop Q,Q,10.
After that I couldn’t win a hand. River, river, river ... all night long. Here is the worst one. As a dealer I just called the pre flop raise. On the flop we went all in ... but sometimes stars are aligned against you(me).

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Can't win

Last night I played in my regular Tuesday night game. In first five hands I had a pocket pair and didn't win any. Later I had four times pocket queens and didn't win once. I flopped twice a set and lost. Three times I was beaten by the straight on the river, and once by flush. It was bad and more bad, and I was lucky to lose only $400.
Tonight I decided to stay at home, but it was boring so I started two low cost tournaments on Poker Stars. A $3 re-buy tournament with 4095 players, and $22 Sit & Go with 180 players. From the first hand no luck. Just can't win a hand. Here are two bad beats I had simultaneously in the same minute.

And one more ...

I continued re-buy tournament with 7 re-buys, and made it into the second hour. Total prize pool was $50,000 with the first place prize $6,500.
With about 2000 players left in the game I won a nice all in hand.

After this hand I didn't get anything playable, and din't play enough pots.
For two and half hour and 150 hands my stats look like this:
During current Hold'em session you were dealt 150 hands and saw flop:
- 8 out of 16 times while in big blind (50%)
- 4 out of 18 times while in small blind (22%)
- 16 out of 116 times in other positions (13%)
- a total of 28 out of 150 (18%) <---- Half of what I want. Stack: largest 91193, smallest 175, average 20679 Your current position is 1205 out of 1355 Blinds 300/600 ante 70 A few minutes later I finished tournament at 1241th place, and continued to watch a high school baseball movie "The Final Season".

Monday, May 18, 2009

Week 20-2009

Monday Mike can't get any players for the game so I went to Ho-Chunk. For seven hours I couldn't get one pair, so I lost $270.
Tuesday Good game and enough action with Randy(old), but no cigar and I lost $100.
Friday $100 buy in tournament at the Red Mouse with 90 players. I went out after 15 minutes with JJ against KK. I re raised pre flop, and he went all in. I knew I'm not good, but let's gamble, there is always a cash game. It didn't work so I'm on my way to Scot's home game.
At Scot's place I found our regular crowd. In the second hand I was all in for $200 and re buy. One hour later I ran into two sets in a row, so I'm in for $1000. About midnight I'm down $800. Than it started. One of the players went out to smoke a joint. He came back "refreshed" so he decided to go all in pre flop. I called with KK and got his $400. Few minutes later another all in with the only black guy in Madison who can ski and play hockey. I have my thousand back. When we switched game to PLO I won a few nice pots without losing a big hand.
Game ended at 5am, and I cashed out $1900.
Saturday Ho-Chunk poker room was packed thanks to a horse race. We all watched Rachel Alexander wining Preakness Stakes. Poker slow and boring. Up $200, and cards just stopped. About midnight our table broke so I was moved to a new table. I thought it's better to go home and get some sleep. My second hand was my best play of the week.

The kid with about $600 raised pre flop $10, and got four calls. I was SB so on the flop I made $20 bet, and only the kid called.
Turn was blank, so I decided to end the hand there and bet $65.
The kid started to play with chips, made a pile of $65, than made a move like he wants’ to fold, than counted another $100, and ... finally made a $65 raise???
Wow ... what ..., but I called.
On the river with three spades on the board, and the possible straight I had to check.
The kid pushed $100 so fast that it didn't look right. Why not all in?
I repeated a few times "$10", "$10" ... thinking that the pre flop raise and the cards on the board don’t match. Set of nines, and just calling my flop bet??? No.
Than I showed my "8", looked at Andy the dealer, and said "It's your fault. All I could beat was pair of sevens and now with this 6 on the river ..."
But that $10 pre flop was the problem. He has AK, and the Tin Cup inside me said "Call". He was slow showing his hand and I knew the pot is mine. I heard "Nice call".
While collecting chips I said "Just a kid with the dream".

It was a good week, 31 hour and $885.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Week 19-2009

After my vacation this was a short week. I played 28 hours and scored $750. Saturday we had again a good game in Middleton with Dave A. and his friends. Sunday I went to Milwaukee to visit friends, and played 5 hours of boring poker at Patawatomi casino and made $20.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Leaving Fun Town (Belgrade)

My vacation lasted three weeks. Can't wait to get back to Madison and play some poker again.

Last night I went again to SkyPoker Club with Alek, an old friend. There was a re-buy tournament. Initial buy in was 500 dinars ($7), with $4.50 re-buys first 75 minutes. Only three tables, but it was fun. I had a plan to play it "online style" with Allin-Rebuy from the first hand, but ... I got lucky in some hands, and most of the time everyone folded. I had enough chips and never had a chance for re-buy. Than just before the break I made a tin cup play, and gave away half of my stack to my buddy Alek.

There was total of 55 re-buys, and 15 add-ons. Top four places are paid, with first place prize of about $220. Not bad for the economy where doctors make $400 per month. I had fun playing with young and un experienced players. When I was moved to another table there was Aco (a.k.a. Janez), probably the best player in the club. My set of eights was not good, so I lost another half of my stack. Then I started going All In. First with pocket sevens, and got no call. Than with pocket deuces, and made a set to beat Aco and his pocket Kings.

I started to build my stack, and with a few bluffs and steals I built my stack to over 25,000. The final table and Aco is on my right. He got a couple of bad beats, but he kept coming back and building his stack.

Than ... Aco went All In. I picked up a par of Kings, and he showed his Queens. As you can guess first card on the flop was the Queen, and I was out. I wished everyone a good luck, and went home to star packing.

I'm glad I met guys at the SkyPoker Club. Nice crowd and I wish to all of them big pocket pairs, and big stacks.

Badgers, Mr. Wegas is coming home.