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An exciting couple days?

Sorry for not posting yesterday - I was working from home while taking care of my wife, so I just didn't have the time. Last night, I had the choice of posting or playing poker and I chose to play.

Over the past few days, I played some NL and FL ring games and some $5 SNGs. Let's start the recap:

NL ring game
Played the $10 NL at Pacific Poker again and ended up $1.87 after an hour of so. Maybe I should try the $25 NL when I've turned the $20 bonus into $25? I don't know if I can sit there grinding away for an hour, folding hand after hand, and coming away with only a buck for my efforts.

I also decided to give the SNGs at Party Poker a try. The have $5 + $1 SNGs that fill up really quickly and I'd heard the games were loose. Well, first off, you start with only T800 in chips and the blinds go up every 10 hands. This is definitely not the right structure if you want to minimize the role of luck in the game.

Here's a breakdown of the action:
Level 1:Get 600 off two players with my AK - an ace hits on the flop and a king on the turn. I slowplay it and induce a bluff on the river by one of the players. In the chip lead with T1320

Level 2: First knockout occurs on hand 3 of level 2.

Level 3: I pick up TT, QQ, and TT in three consecutive hands. Everyone folds to my first TT and then the QQ (I thought Party Poker players were supposed to be loose?). When the second TT rolls around, I raise to T150 from UTG, a middle position player calls and the BB goes all in with his last T350. I push all-in to isolate and MP folds. Unfortunately, my tens get cracked when the BB's pocket sixes turn into a flush on the river. By the end of level 3, I'm 4 out of 7 with T1140.

Level 4: Although the blinds are still not too high, I've managed to really screw myself by playing some draws too aggressively against the wrong players. The blinds are at 50/100 and I've got T900 left. I decide to play a QT from the BB after UTG raised it up to T200 - the UTG player was the chip leader and had stolen the blinds 4 out of the last 5 hands. Flop comes down 9 9 3. I check, leader checks. Turn is a Q. I bet 100, chip leader raises to 200, and I f*ck myself by pushing all in. Chip leader insta-calls and turns over A9o thereby giving me the virtual finger. I hate people who slowplay...

After this horrid display, I pulled the remaining $54 out of Party Poker. I will go back, but not now.

SNG #2
I decided to use PokerRoom as the stage for my November SNG Challenge: deposit enough for 10 SNGs and try to double it or lose it (actually, I don't need to try very hard to lose $55...).

If you've never tried PokerRoom, it definitely has its ups:

  1. It has got to be the prettiest online poker room around. I always deactivate the avatars to get that nice clean look.
  2. There are lots of players all the time, although the games can be somewhat tougher than on other networks.
  3. The entry fee for $5 SNGs is only $0.50 instead of the full $1 charge by Party Poker and the WPC network skins (EuroBet, Empire Poker, and Intertops Poker).
  4. Starting chip stacks are T1500 with the blinds going up every 10 hands. Although the 10 hands thing gets a little out of hand towards the end of a SNG, the larger chip stacks make up for it.
Without further ado, here's an SNG recap:

Level 1: I do absolutely nothing...fun!

Level 2: Steal a few pots here and there.

Level 3: With the blinds at 75/150, I pick up cowboys and manage to go up by T600 after I miraculously get a couple callers on this incredibly tight table. I'm now 3 out of 6 with T2270. I'm surprised we've already lost 4 players, but the remaining five opponents have really discovered a new level of tightness (insert random sexual reference here for comedic effect).

Level 6: My notes jump straight to the hand where I lose. Levels 4 and 5 were just a series of well-timed folds and blind steals. I'm now in the BB with 88 and there are four players left (including me). The chip leader on the button raises it up to T600. I've got about T1200 left and the SB has T800 left. The SB goes all in for his last 800. I'm now faced with a choice: I push all-in and try to triple up. If I win the pot, I'm good. If the chip leader wins the pot, I'll finish in 3rd since I have more chips than the SB. So, I push and the chip leader calls. The chip leader shows his J7, SB shows 96 and I'm the favourite to win. The flop comes down with a nine and I'm pissed - if the SB wins, I'll be crippled and will most likely not make the money. Turn is a blank. River is a jack! Yay! I'm out in third and win $10 (net profit: + $4.50).

Wednesday Night
I played some 0.50/1.00 at EuroBet last night. I've got 375 raked hands to clear to get my $25 bonus, so I thought I'd give it a shot while my wife laid on the couch beside me.

I played for two hours - here are the stats:
  • Hands played: 232

  • Raked hands: 134

  • $ Won: $16.75

  • BB/100: 7.22
So, not too shabby a night at the tables. In the two hours of play, I didn't make any serious mistakes. Lost $2 with my AK, lost another $3 with AJ (I had two overcards and a gutshot straight draw on the board - lost to pocket tens).

Some of the good hands included hitting the full boat on the river with my Hilton sisters - board showed Q T 6 J T. The guy to my right had JT and paid me off on the turn and the river. That hand made me $15. I also won $6.50 with pocket Aces and another $6.50 when I rivered a flush on a fishy player who'd hit his flush on the flop with his 73 of spades. Because I'd raised the pot PF, I had odds to draw to the flush (I had two overcards, flush draw, and gutshot straight draw).

I also played two $5 SNGs at PokerRoom:

SNG #1
Levels 1-3: My play in the first three levels can be summed up by one stat: in the first 25 hands, I had 72 five times, T7 five times, and 54 five times. I'm at T1340 and I'm sitting 4th out of 7. Three people go out on this level, including a guy who loses when his AK runs into KK.

Level 4: Down to T1000...I know for whom the bell doth toll... I keep picking up crap hands in the blinds and am forced to fold to all steal attempts (I'm not going all in with the hammer or a 63o...).

Level 5: Blinds at 100/200 and I'm down to T865. I steal a couple pots and am up to T1165 and in dead last (6/6). Then, with an A2s in the BB, I go all-in for my last 865 when the SB raises it to 400. Since I've been folding to all steal attempts, his raise does not mean much. He calls and I know it's over: he turns over his AJ and I'm out in sixth...

SNG #2: The Revenge
I turned off the laptop for a bit since I was worried that the "Doom Switch" may still be activated for my account at PokerRoom. For those who don't know, the Doom Switch is what shitty players blame their online poker losses on [bad grammar, I know]. Shitty players around the world have theorized (and in some cases, obtained "code") that shows that online poker rooms can activate a doom switch that causes you to lose all your money at a particular site. For example, after depositing at a site, you may build up your inital deposit by hitting good pots with your 69o and K2s. But after withdrawing your money, the doom switch is activated and you can no longer win.

For all the players out there shittier than me: there is a doom switch and I'm it baby! I will take your money any chance I get because you don't have to be all that good to beat weak-tight or loose-passive fishies like you. Ha ha ha!

And now with my bad karma well in place, here's the recap of my 2nd SNG:

Level 2: I'm 4th out of ten. I've won one small pot with a KQo. Other than that, totally card dead. There must be extra 2s in the deck, cuz I'm picking one up on every hand. On a side note, a guy once chatted something very similar at a Party Poker 0.50/1.00 table. I understood what he was talking about and lol'd (to myself anyway) but everyone else at the table didn't really get it. One guy called him a "fish asshole" and explained that the cars are random. Ok Mr. Hellmuth...shit...even Phil has more class than that (actually, I like Phil myself...and not in that way).

I also manage to lose one third of my stack when the short stack min-raises PF. I put him all in with my AJ and he insta-calls, showing his KK. Dirty slowplaying shit monkey! I deserved it though - AJ sucks...

Level 3: I'm now in 6th spot out of 10 (ok people, it's ok to take a chance and go all-in...that's right, I'm talking to you buddy...the guy with T180 left and folding your blinds...).

I finally get a premium hand, JJ, and raise it to T175. I'm trying to encourage callers while also discouraging callers - I'm not sure what I want with this hand... I get 3 callers and the flop comes 8 5 2 rainbow. The SB bets 300, so I put the bad boy all-in with my last T900 or so. SB calls and shows AQs. You know, I hate players like this who are willing to risk their entire tournament lives on a couple of overcards.Anyway, the universe plays things out the way they should and my jacks hold up. I'm up to T2600 and in third place (still 10 people left!).

Then people start dropping like flies - I guess my all-in got the action started and everyone wanted to play. Guy to my right is out first when he goes all-in with K6o and is called by Mr. AQs - this time, however, he's holding AA.

9 left...

Two hands later, another guy is out when he goes all in with QJo and is called by chip leader with KJo. There's nothing worse than going all-in and being dominated PF.

Level 4: Another one bites the dust when his pocket 2s run into the 2nd largest stack's AKo. Then the chipleader (he's at T9500 and has 5 times more chips than anyone) decides to actually play and knocks the 2nd place guy down to T820. He slowplayed the nut straight on the turn.

I'm up to T2975 and in second place (out of 7) when I river a straight (3,4,5,6,7). No one was betting and it cost me nothing to see the river. I put out a pot-sized bet after hitting the straight when everyone checked to me on the button - SB calls the bet.

I then lose T600 when I try to knock out the short-stack. I'm UTG with AA, I do a min-raise (blinds are 75/150) and BB goes all-in. He turn over KT and I'm laughing...until the flop comes down K K x.

Level 5: I'm at T2170 and 2 out of 6. Everyone's decided to play the fold game, so I raise it up on the button with AQo. I'm down to T1645 when I miss the flop and the maniac to my right decides to put out a big bet.

Level 6:Still in 2nd though...until I piss some chips away and am down to T1145 and 4/5.

Level 7: The blinds are pretty high now and I go all in in the SB with 99. Chip leader calls with his AJ but my nines hold up putting me at T2840 and in second place. By the way, the chip leader still has 4 times more chips than anyone but is folding to all-in bets from the short-stacks...guess he had nowhere to go.

Level 8: I'm still in second with T4700. I've been stealing the chip leader's blinds since he doesn't seem to want to play. Early in this level, the chip leader finally takes care of the third place maniac and we're heads-up. Although the I have 7 opportunities to knock the guy out (he survived 7 all-ins...unreal...), I end up losing when the blinds are at 1200/2400. I only have T3000 left in the BB. Chip leader completes and I push. He insta-calls and shows AA.

I made some mistakes in the heads-up that I'm only recognizing now (the advantages of having a poker blog). The chip leader was a rock and total slowplayer. On five or six hands, I put out big bets on the river after having the chip leader check to me the whole way. He'd push all-in or just call and show me some monster hands. I should have stopped all my bluffing and played my cards only. Still, I had him no the ropes many times - we either chopped the pot or he hit a 3 outer to beat me.

All in all, I'm happy with the result though - second place paid $15.

Well, that's it for now...long post! I've got work to do and I'm leaving work early to help out my wife.

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