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The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

I played a few tables of O8 last night and noticed a disturbing trend. Many of the hands that I won were the result of pure luck. I'd get to the river after having backed into a solid high-hand or two-way hand and scoop. As an aside, scooping a pot in Omaha 8 is one of the greatest feelings in poker.

But for every miracle hit on the river, I was able to screw up other hands and put myself in absolutely miserable spots. I've included a trio of hands from last night's session that do a good job of demonstrating the big hands that I won by getting lucky (The Good), lost by getting unlucky (The Bad), and lost due to questionable play on my part (The Ugly). Comments are welcome from any of my seasoned O8 readers.

Full Tilt Poker $0.50/$1 Limit Omaha Hi/Lo - 7 players
View hand 156310
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

CO posts a big blind (1 SB)

Pre Flop: (2.5 SB) Hero is BB with 22 of hearts KK of hearts 88 of spades AA of spades
UTG calls, UTG+1 calls, 1 fold, CO checks, BTN calls, SB calls, Hero checks

Flop: (6 SB) 44 of diamonds 33 of diamonds 44 of spades (6 players)
SB checks, Hero checks, UTG checks, UTG+1 checks, CO checks, BTN bets, SB folds, Hero calls, UTG calls, UTG+1 calls, CO calls

(6 players in, nut low draw, so I'll peel.)

Turn: (5.5 BB) 99 of spades (5 players)
Hero checks, UTG checks, UTG+1 checks, CO checks, BTN bets, Hero raises, UTG folds, UTG+1 folds, CO calls, BTN calls

(I raise with the flush draw and nut-draw. I was worried that I might be splitting the low with another player. But I should have just called, I think, to keep more people in the pot and give myself better odds on my high draw. I'm probably too concerned about quartering against these micro-stakes players.)

River: (11.5 BB) 88 of hearts (3 players)
Hero bets, CO calls, BTN folds

(Missed the flush but I bet the low for value and hope that I'm not quartered or sixth-ed.)

Final Pot: 13.5 BB
CO mucks 22 of clubs 77 of spades 55 of diamonds 22 of diamonds
Hero shows 22 of hearts KK of hearts 88 of spades AA of spades (HI: two pair, Eights and Fours; LO: 8,4,3,2,A)
Hero wins 6.5 BB
Hero wins 6.5 BB
(Rake: $0.50)


Full Tilt Poker $1/$2 Limit Omaha Hi/Lo - 8 players
View hand 156312
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

Pre Flop: (1.5 SB) Hero is CO with AA of clubs 77 of hearts AA of hearts 66 of spades
3 folds, MP2 raises, Hero 3-bets, 3 folds, MP2 calls

(MP2 is a loose-aggressive (VP: 84%, PFR: 22%) player.)

Flop: (7.5 SB) 22 of diamonds AA of diamonds KK of clubs (2 players)
MP2 checks, Hero bets, MP2 calls

(Good to hit the flop with only one low card showing.)

Turn: (4.75 BB) 99 of hearts (2 players)
MP2 checks, Hero bets, MP2 calls

(No low possible - time to keep betting for value.)

River: (6.75 BB) TT of spades (2 players)
MP2 bets, Hero calls

(Villain is LAG enough to bet with two pair. While it's possible that he has QJ for the straight, that's only one possible hand that he bets in this spot. My hand's too strong to fold and some better players might raise in this spot. But I'd hate to raise and have Villain 3-bet in a spot where I've played my hand transparently and would likely have to fold. I'd rather see what Villain is holding.)


Final Pot: 8.75 BB
MP2 shows 44 of diamonds QQ of diamonds JJ of spades 44 of spades (HI: a straight, Ace high)
Hero mucks AA of clubs 77 of hearts AA of hearts 66 of spades
MP2 wins 8.375 BB
(Rake: $0.75)


Full Tilt Poker $1/$2 Limit Omaha Hi/Lo - 9 players
View hand 156313
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

Pre Flop: (1.5 SB) Hero is CO with 99 of clubs 88 of hearts AA of spades AA of diamonds
4 folds, MP2 calls, Hero raises, 3 folds, MP2 calls

Flop: (5.5 SB) AA of clubs 66 of diamonds 55 of clubs (2 players)
MP2 bets, Hero calls

(MP2 is pretty aggressive and LAG. It' s a good flop but not a great flop given that my low-draw is crap and my top set is vulnerable to the flush. )

Turn: (3.75 BB) 22 of diamonds (2 players)
MP2 bets, Hero calls

(Villain might be thinking that I'm counterfeited here. I've still got a draw to the boat and I've got a low albeit a crappy one.)

River: (5.75 BB) JJ of clubs (2 players)
MP2 bets, Hero calls

(Crappy low, flush draw hits on the river. If Villain were a solid player, I might have folded in this spot. But I chose to make the call based on the Villain's image. Yuck...)

Final Pot: 7.75 BB
MP2 shows 99 of diamonds 44 of clubs 33 of clubs 44 of hearts (HI: a flush, Ace high; LO: 5,4,3,2,A)
Hero mucks 99 of clubs 88 of hearts AA of spades AA of diamonds
MP2 wins 3.75 BB
MP2 wins 3.625 BB
(Rake: $0.75)

I'm not a good enough O8 player to know whether my losing hands are standard or not. When you lack experience and knowledge, it's easy to be results-oriented because results encompass the bulk of your feedback on any given play or hand. I still think the last hand is probably a fold on the river but it's hard to say given the Villain's style of play. Thankfully I didn't go crazy and start raising at any point in the hand.

More of the same tonight, I think. As soon as I've worked my way back to even at the $1/$2 games, I'll start playing some $1/$2 - $2/$4 games. For the record, I'm about one scoop and a few more hours of experience away from taking a half-step up in stakes.

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