Saturday, May 07, 2005

Two tourneys - Friday May 6 (blah blah blah)

I'll have to blame the hernia drugs for my losses tonight, because I certainly felt like I brought my A game. Of course, it only takes one error in judgement to get knocked out. I think I was 3rd or 4th knocked out of 8 in first tourney, and then tied for fourth knocked out of 7.

Biggest Mistake - Second tourney, the aggressive in-half-the-pots player who's low stacked goes all in, and I've got a third of my chips in as the big blind. I was hoping nobody else would stay, since they weren't as pot-committed as I was. I stay in w A7 os and Now 2/3 of my stack is committed, and the other guy staying in has maybe 30% of his stack in play. An Ace comes on the flop, and I go all in, and he's got A8 to my A7. I fail to suck out. (The table bully had 55 and did not find a third card.)

IIKTWIKN: I didn't need to go all in at that time, and I would have kept close to 2BB. I Could have maybe bullied a pot or two to cover my blinds for a while till I caught some cards. As it was, I doubt he would have put me all in with A8 os, so I dug my own grave. I figured he was on kq suited or some such promising hand, but if I had knocked through, I would still have taken a decent pot and bought some time.

I've clearly still got all-in fever. There was no reason to go all-in, but I did it anyhow.

Good judgement - In general, I had the good sense to back off from confrontations when I clearly did NOT have the nuts, and most of the time I did not throw good money after bad. When I missed the flop, it didn't take much to push me off the draw. I was laughing on at least one hand when everybody checked through the river and I was able to show a winning 77 pair.

Questionable Judgement - There were five players at the table, and I get a pocket pair of queens. I bully the table with them rather than slow playing. Hmm, that was silly I guess. On the flip side, two early players had already limped in, so I bullied 3.5 BB, rather than taking my chances of somebody pairing their ace or king on the flop. With at least 3 limpers, my queens could have faltered.

Partial Credit: I think I finished pretty well for the cards I was pulling. I saw two, possibly three pairs all night, didn't see Big Slick or even KQ suited all night, and rarely got limping cards that weren't raised out of play. If I had been getting any hands, I might have been dangerous!

I can't remember how I went out in tourney one, but I think I went out honorably. If anybody remembers, drop me a line.

As always, enjoyed the tourney, thanks Preacher ;-)

All in Fever Continued - While that all-in mentioned above was a bad choice, and I vaguely remember matching somebody else's all-in in the first tourney (almost always a bad choice when you don't have the nuts...), other than those two occasions, I did use all-in as an effective weapon.

At least twice in the two tourneys, I went all-in heads up when I clearly had the nuts. I made at least three all-in bets when I had the speculative nuts but was frankly afraid of being sucked out on the turn/river, looking at someone else's clear flush draw or straight draw on the flop. The one other all-in I mildly regret is when I clearly had the nuts against the bully at the table, and I could have check-raised him for more money rather than chasing him out of the pot. Of course, the table bully was also my ride for the evening, so I didn't want to play too cute ;-)

Game Theory: I've been reading through and absorbing Sklansky's Theory of Poker little by little, and have taken the section on Game Theory to heart. However, with a bully at the table last night, Game Theory is no longer appropriate, for the same reason Game Theory no longer fits when you sit down with a calling station.

Well, when I'm playing the computerized opponents in the game I reviewed earlier, I find that I can use game theory very effectively. But then, that's the joy of playing humans, is the gap between theory and practice.

First Tourney: Selective memory finally toned down this morning to tell me how I got knocked out of first tourney. I stayed for a raise flop with A10 suited, and an Ace came up on the flop. Somewhere along the way (the flop?) I was offered an all-in proposition, and I took it. This was a bad idea, because I was facing Big Slick, and sure enough, I lost on the kicker.

IIKTWIKN: Don't stay in on the all-in bet when it's offered and you don't have the nuts. Even if your opponent is bluffing 30% of the time, it's still a losing proposition, especially when it knocks you out of the tourney. If my kicker had paired, I MIGHT have probably considered it.

PS: Hello to DS, who apparently reads my blogs and recognized a table he was at. I hope you don't go to school on me too badly ;-)