Returning the Favor and other Slices of Life

Returning the Favor
Returning the Favor
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Sunday, February 24, 2008

It's been a long time...

A loooong time. It's been a long time since I've booked three winning sessions in a row, much less three sessions in a row where my results have been - nearly triple my buy-in, more than triple my buy-in, and nearly triple my buy-in. Now, we're not talking big money in actual dollars, since most of my weekend was spent at the $100 max tables at Turning Stone, but that actually makes it more impressive to me that I was able to pocket just shy of 6 buy-ins profit on the weekend, since most of the time there was only about $1200 on the table at any given time.

I mentioned that I finished my first session at TS up thanks in large part to kid who couldn't get away from AQ. Well, here's that story. I'd been playing pretty tight, but was playing come-from-behind poker all night after gifting my first buy-in on a bad river bluff. It wasn't a bad bluff because I executed it poorly, it was a bad bluff because it got called.

Who am I kidding, I executed it about as poorly as possible. But anyway, I had about $250 in front of me and was sitting at a strangely deep stacked table for the $1/2 $100 max game. There were several people at the table with enough chips to double me up, and a couple more with similar stack sizes to mine. The kid to my right (and by kid, I mean wasn't alive when Reagan was president) raised preflop to $11, and I look down to find JJ in the cutoff. I make it $35 to go, since there are already several limpers and I only want to play the hand against one or at most two players. Everyone folds, and I'm happy to pick up the pot right there.

Next hand, kid makes the same raise, and I look down at AK soooted. I think in hearts. I reraise the same amount, and look over at him and say "nothing personal." I knew at least he was going to come along, since it was the second time in two hands I had re-raised him preflop, and there was no way he'd give me credit for a big hand twice in a row. I picked up one other caller, and we saw an Ace-8-10 flop, all diamonds. Junior checked and I bet out $50. The other caller folded, and Junior called. The 8c came on the turn, and I bet another $50. Junior check-raised me $70 on top, and I went into the tank. I had enough to make the call, and Junior had a little left behind. I had him covered, but not by much.

The more I thought about the hand, the more his raise made no sense. He wouldn't have called a preflop re-raise with anything that had an 8, unless it was pocket 8s, and if he had flopped a set on a flushed board, he either would have led out at the pot or check-raised me there. I also didn't expect him to have any diamonds because the only moderately reasonable hand to call a preflop re-raise with was Ace-paint, and the Ace of diamonds was on the board. So either he's an idiot and called a $24 reraise preflop from one of the tightest players at the table (hard to believe from our home game, but for most of the weekend I was one of the tightest players at the table) with K-Q of diamonds, or he's making a move with A-K and the King of diamonds for the redraw to the nut flush. So after thinking it through, I decided that's what he had, and re-raised all in to go ahead and get the last few chips in to keep from having to make a decision on the river to throw chips in when I knew I was beat if a fourth diamond hit.

Junior called off his last few chips, because not many people can fold for $25 into a $400+ pot (although I saw a similar move on Saturday night), and I said "A-K?" He said "that's good," and turned over As-Qh for a dominated hand that was drawing to 3 outs. He missed his Queen and I was up for the first time that night. Several people remarked on it being a good call, but it all came back to his bet on the turn making no sense with the previous action in the hand and in other hands that had come before it.

And going back to the hand where I folded J-10 preflop to a raise and a reraise, Robert pointed out something that I left out of my description. One of the main reasons I laid down the hand was that I fully expected the guy with Aces to re-re-raise when the action got back to him, and I think that is what cost him the pot. The all in of $30 on top of the raise to $20 was big enough to reopen the betting, and the guy with Aces just smooth-called, which baffled me at the time and got expensive for him later as he got them cracked. Me, with an all-in and two callers behind, I'm sticking every chip I've got in the pot preflop if I have the chance with Aces, because I don't ever want to play Aces in a four-way pot. Ever. And we saw what happened.

More to come later, including me doubling up on my first hand at the table (twice), Kings and Queens getting cracked, and still making out good and getting unstuck for the year.

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