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Birthdays, Books, and Bad Calls

With my birthday fast approaching (less than 24 hours until "go" time), I splurged and bought myself some more poker books. I placed emphasis on pot-limit Omaha books this time around to help with my budding PLO game. After last night's session, I'm positive that I need as much help as possible.

Need proof? Check out the hand after the flop. And then check out the books that I'll be receiving in the mail later today or tomorrow (courtesy of Amazon's fast and free shipping) to help me plug up as many of my PLO leaks as possible.

When I played this hand last night, I was so sure that I was going to score a big pot. After the hand, I thought that I'd simply gotten unlucky in terms of my opponents' holdings. But after referring to Jeff Hwang's book, I learned that a good player could have likely found a fold in this situation. In my defense, the larger-stacked opponent was an uber-LAG intent on showing everyone how great he was by playing every hand dealt to him and betting pot on all streets. In his defense, I'd only seen him play 12 hands.

Full Tilt Poker $0.10/$0.25 Pot Limit Omaha Hi - 6 players
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

SB: $25.00
BB: $14.70
LAG (UTG): $42.60
MP: $9.75
Hero (CO): $47.15
BTN: $58.50

Pre Flop: ($0.35) Hero is CO with QQ of spades AA of hearts JJ of hearts AA of clubs
LAG calls $0.25, 1 fold, Hero raises to $1.10, 2 folds, BB calls $0.85, LAG calls $0.85

Flop: ($3.40) QQ of hearts 22 of diamonds QQ of diamonds (3 players)
BB checks, LAG checks, Hero bets $3.40, BB calls $3.40, LAG raises to $17, Hero raises to $46.05 all in, BB calls $10.20 all in, LAG calls $24.50 all in

(I've flopped trips against a short-ish stacked player and a LAG. I've got to be good here, right? According to Jeff Hwang, this is not the best spot to be in due to the few overcards that I hold with my trip Queens.  I'm pretty sure holding AA is actually hurting me here, effectively removing 4 outs that could give me the pot. I'd be in a better spot holding AKQJ here, I'd think. For the record, I was expecting to see one of my opponent's show trip Queens with a worse kicker and the other opponent holding a flush draw. Once again, I fail to give my opponents any credit.)

Turn: ($100.00) 66 of diamonds (3 players - 3 are all in)

River: ($100.00) 55 of clubs (3 players - 3 are all in)

Final Pot: $100.00
BB shows 33 of spades 33 of clubs 99 of hearts QQ of clubs (three of a kind, Queens)
LAG shows 22 of clubs 44 of hearts 22 of hearts 99 of spades (a full house, Twos full of Queens)
Hero shows QQ of spades AA of hearts JJ of hearts AA of clubs (three of a kind, Queens)
LAG wins $55.00
LAG wins $42.00
(Rake: $3.00)

I can say that I might have found a fold on the flop had the LAG been a tight, reasonable player. Then again, that last statement feels like a lie and I'll likely keep misplaying hands such as these until I've dropped a good chunk of my bankroll at the PLO tables.

All said and done, I was up close to a buy-in last night. According to PokerEV, I should have expected to win about $1.50 last night. What can I say? I have a lot of work to do on my PLO game. And for that reason, I bought myself some birthday books from Amazon! Check out my purchases below. If you'd like to own any of these books, feel free to buy them using the links below. Think of it as a your birthday gift to me!

Every Hand Revealed (Gus Hansen)

I've heard a number of good things about this book. Supposedly, Gus Hansen's thought process is both astounding and inspirational. I like being both astounded and inspired on my birthday so this book is a good fit. Although I'm not planning on playing any MTTs this year, I'll take any chance I get to learn how a professional poker player approaches a poker hand.

Farha on Omaha (Sam Farha)

According to everything that I've heard about Sam Farha, he's a wicked Omaha player. Will his book help me become a better $25 PLO player? I'm leaning towards "No" on that one. High-stakes, professional live-game poker players live in a different world that online, micro-limit grinders such as myself. But I am looking forward to reading Farha's take on the game of Omaha as well as getting a little insight into his thought process during a hand. I think "Farha on Omaha" will be an entertaining read that could pay off down the road.

Secrets of Professional Poker (Rolf Slotboom)

Jeff Hwang vouched for Rolf Slotboom's skills as an Omaha player by recommending one of Rolf's other books - Secrets of Professional Pot-Limit Omaha (which I may be getting as a birthday present from my Mom). Jeff Hwang's recommendation is good enough for me so I went out and ordered "Secret of Professional Poker". The book discusses no-limit hold'em, short- and deep-stacked Omaha, tournament strategy, and more. I have a feeling that this book is a hidden gem in the world of poker books.

Omaha Poker (Bob Ciaffone)

This is a tough book to come by in Canada and a supposed "must-read" book on Omaha. My past experience with Ciaffone's books leaves me a little wary. I've read two of Ciaffone's books and have found them to be dry, boring, and more applicable to high-stakes play. Still, Ciaffone's play comes across as a pretty tight at times - something that could help my PLO game. I'll reserve judgement on this book until I've had a chance to read it cover to cover.

Elements of Poker (Tommy Angelo)

I've heard so many great things about Tommy Angelo's book that I had to order a copy for myself. I actually ordered my copy via Tommy's web site (www.tommyangelo.com). Why? First off, Tommy's book is insanely expensive in Canada. But more importantly, Tommy will be personally inscribing and signing my copy of "Elements of Poker". How cool is that?

I hope that these books help me continue to take my game to the next level. I've been a struggling micro/low stakes grinder for a while now. With renewed interest in poker and a little more focus in my study and game selection, I still think that this could be my year at the poker tables.

I'll be back on Thursday with some more talk about poker, PLO, and the usual.

Have a good one!


joxum (Denmark) said...

Gus Hansens book is one of the best poker books I've ever read. And not just because he's from Denmark.

Absorb as much as you can from it, but use the knowledge at your own peril.

Gus Hansen has an image to go with his style, which is why it works for him.


SirFWALGMan said...

happy birthday

Klopzi said...

Waffles -

Thanks very much!

Klopzi said...

Joxum -

I started reading the Sam Farha book first but I'll be tackling Gus' book next.

I'm only reading it for enjoyment's sake so no worries about me misapplying what I read.

joxum (Denmark) said...

It's one of those books that will make you open up a table and play like a madman until your bankroll is finished!