Monday, July 10, 2006

What's Beyond Luckbox?

Picking up where we left off.

I got up to a high water mark of about 45k about a level and a half before dinner break...and then the wheels slowly began to come off. I raised with JT, and got called by Karina Jett in position. The flop was J high, and I check called a bet. I checked a blank turn and made a pretty bad call of another bet by Karina. The river checked through and I lost to QJ. A little while later a big stack raised the button, and I defended my BB with J9o. As the flop was dealt Sirio (David Cossio, a good player and friend) stopped by the table to tell me about a hand another friend of mine, Rizen, played at the final table. The flop was AK6 rainbow, and I checked and my opponent made a standard continuation bet. I thought that a check-raise by me here would be pretty believable since I was talking to a friend, and most people pretty much just play there cards when they are distracted. The button promptly reraised me. Oops. Usually I dont stall when I know im folding, but there are some times when I don't want my opponents to know im capable of making a pure bluff. So I spent about 30 seconds pondering whether or not I would call the 3-bet with A6, decided I probably wouldnt, and then folded my complete air. Then, thankfully, dinner came at exactly the right time.

After dinner, I had decided to buckle down, and not get out of line, since my image was off the charts bad. The cards decided not to let me though. I raised TT, and once again Karina called right behind me. The flop was KK4, and I check called. The turn was low and it went check check. The river was a J and we went check check again, and I lost to QJo. Then I raised the button with KJ, and David Mathew (of WPT Championship fame) moved all-in for like 6 million BBs. I folded. Next orbit I raised the button again, this time with AK, and he called. I missed and decided to try and check it down, and either catch a card or win at showdown. He rivered a J though, and won with KJ. Eventually I was whittled all the way down to about 11k when we made the money. By that time Dave Mathew had managed to blow off a huge stack by getting all-in with a massive overbet against a preflop raiser with A8 on a 877 board. The raiser had A7. Needless to say I don't think Dave Mathew plays particularly well.

Well, with 9k in the money, good things started to happen. With the blinds at 400/800 the same big stacked button (BSB) raised and I jammed from the BB with AA. He went into the tank, and I did everything I could to vibe weakness at him. It worked and he called with JTo and I doubled up. I chipped up to 24k and the blinds went to 600/1200/a200, when the BSB once again raised my BB from the button. I had 89o and figured he'd fold a lot. He probably would, but this time he had KK. The flop came J7x and provided a glimmer of hope. When a 9 turned, I was pretty sure I was going to win the hand. And sure enough I nailed a T on the river to fill my gutshot. That put me at around 50k and left the former BSB at 35k or so. After the hand, there was much discussion. Rafi Amit inquired as to wheter or not I looked at my cards. I said yes, and he immediately said, "why?" It was quite funny. I also achieved another poker mile stone when Mike Matusow called me an internet donkey from the next table. I respectfully pointed out that while I might be an internet donkey, I was also a lifetime winner on the internet, unlike him. He shutup.

That same orbit the former BSB limped UTG. I raised to 4k in mp with KK and he called. We saw a Q83 two diamond flop, and the FBSB now check-raised me all-in. I called fairly quickly, but was in bad shape against his set of 3s. Well, I was briefly in bad shape, but then a K rivered...and the pour FBSB instead of having a monster stack was out, and I had over 90k. I proceeded to bust a british pro with A9 against his J9, and Rafi Amit with 99 v A6 and I ended a quite crazy first day with 115k in chips...good for 4th out of the remaining 39 players.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

No, Really...Im A Luckbox

Its tourney report time...or at least the beginning of tournament report time.

From the first hand of the 2500 Short Handed event I was playing well, and running well. First hand, im in the BB with A9o, and call a raise from the SB. Flop comes A9x and I end up winning 1200 chips or so from AK. I really could do no wrong in the first couple of levels. I raised with Qd9c and got called in the SB. He was 21 years old, and mentioned that he recognized me from the pokerdb. Flop comes A high all diamonds, and he check calls. The turn is a 9, and he check raises. I call. I get there on the river and he check folds and mutters good naturedly about not playing big pots out of position. Another hand I raised with Ad7d and got called in one spot behind me. Flop was 884 with two diamonds, and I bet and got called. Turn blanked and I checked, and the guy insta-checked behind me. I was pretty sure he was calling a river bet with whatever he was trying to get to showdown with so it was a good thing that I got there, and like clockwork I bet and he called. Right at the end of the 2nd level my table broke. At my new table I played about one hand before dinner and it was at least mildly interesting. A big stack raises (positions are much less relevant six handed) to 150 at 25/50 and I made it 600 on the button with KJo. He looked like he was about to fold, and then called. The flop was JTx and he now led for 800. I couldnt think of a good reason to fold or raise, so I called. Turn was a blank, and he led again...this time for 2500. I really thought he was overvalueing 1 pair, like AJ or something so I folded after a little think and filed it away in the memory banks. I entered the first break with about 6500.

I drifted down a little while during the beginning of the next level. However, I played 3 big pots. I raised with 87 of hearts and got called in one spot behind me and the SB. The flop was J34 with 1 heart and it checks around. I mentally call for the 5h, and bam there it is on the turn. SB checks, I take a stab, and get called by the guy behind me. River is my gin card, an offsuit 6. Turns out it really really was my gin card, because the turn caller had 67, and I busted him. A little later I defended my blind with 4c5c against a raise. Flop came 2d3d6d. Nothing in life is ever easy. I led for 350 and got raised to 850. I called planning to lead a blank turn. Unfortunately he folded. The last hand was pretty simple. The same player raised to 300 in EP, the button called and I made it 1000 from the SB with KK. I think it helped that I had squeezed in the same manner a couple of orbits before...because the raiser decided to go with his JJ and I won a big pot to get up to about 12k.

My table broke again and I was moved to a table with another big stack two to my right. This is when miracle hand number 1 happened. I was at about 10k when big stack raised to 600 (blinds at 100/200). I called in position with QsJs. The flop came Ts9h8c. The preflop raiser led into me for 1000. I made it 2500, and he though for a few seconds, and then jammed. Obviously I insta-called with the nuts. Time then began to get very very slow. He said something like "uhoh" and I expected him to have something like JT or AA. Instead he turned over the very live 8h8d. To be honest, I was already slightly dissapointed by how little I was ahead, and crushed when the 9s turned. I got up to leave, already composing the title to be very dissapointed blog post in my head. Vaguely I heard my opponent say..."you have outs." And then, sure enough, on the river the magical, unbelievable, incredible 8s giving me a straight flush, and my poor opponent quads. After that my stack soared. A player raised to 600 with almost exactly 6000 behind. I made it 2000 from the SB with JTo intending to fold to a push. However, my opponent surprised me and after almost folding...he flat called for 1/3 of his stack. The flop came QdJx2d. I didnt know what to do, but figured there was no way betting could be better than checking. So I checked. My opponent pushed, and after thinking briefly, and looking into his soul, I called, and managed to stay ahead of his 8d9d. This got me close to 40k, and about 1.5 hours later I hit my high water mark for the day 45k. Then the wheels began to come off (for the first time). That ladies and gentleman is what we call "forshadowing."

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Final Table

2nd in Chips going in. Lets try and win this bad boy.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Im Alive!!

114k going into day 2 of the 6max event. Two monster suck outs got me the chips. I'll post a full trip report after I bust.

Friday, June 30, 2006

Varience 2; MLG 0

My table draw for the 1500 PL event was quite unfortunate. Alex Balandin, Perry Friedman, Chris Bell and Keith Sexton. I went on a heater right at the beginning of the event, and got up to 2500 pretty quickly. I hovered there throughout the first two levels...and while I wasn't accumulating a ton of chips, I was quite enjoying myself. Perry Friedman was fun and engaging to have on my right. Unfortunately he busted right before the first break, giving his 4k in chips to the very aggressive, but very bad player directly to my left. My high water mark was about 5k when I busted a shortstacked Chris Bell, when my A7 outflopped his Queens. Then it was all downhill. Eventually I got my last 3k in with Q5o on a 234 two heart board. My opponent had 9h7h and an Ah turned.

2500 6 handed NL tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

0 for 1

Today was quite frusterating. I executed my plan to perfection in the first couple of levels, and gambled in a couple of close spots in big pots...and won them to get up to 8k after the first two levels. Thats a HUGE stack considering you start with 1500. Then I was out by level 5 without playing a single big pot. Seriously frusterating. I got up to 7k playing this hand which was fairly interesting.

With the blinds at 25/50 the CO who has a lot of chips, but is quite bad makes it 125. I call on the button with KT of hearts, and then BB, who is very good, and very controlled calls as well. 400 in the pot. Flop is Q8x with two hearts. BB checks, and the CO bets 250. I make it 600, and the BB now jams for 1900 more (2500 total). So the pot is laying me 3750:1900 or jusssssst short of 2:1. I figure that my K is an out at least sometimes...and I still have 800 or so if I lose...and I firmly believe gambling in the first few levels is important. So I call. The BB has AQ, but the turn and river come J9 giving me a back door straight and a HUGE pot.

It didnt matter though as I had a couple of minor bad beats (although if I was playing my A+ game I would have lost slightly less on them I think) and one bad bluff...then one pretty bad beat, and I was on fumes. Eventually my 88 couldnt outflop JJ and I went home.

1500 PL tomorrow...I'll be there table 142, seat 4.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

It Begins

Table 113, Seat 1.

Last year I didnt play well at the wsop, I was kind of intimidated by the whole atmosphere I think. With a year's more experience under my belt I have much much higher expectations....which is also a problem since 8 tournaments (the amount im planning on playing) is a rediculously small sample size. Be that as it may, I'll be pretty bummed if I don't put at least one good run together.