Sunday, July 24, 2016

Aces On The River

Good evening everyone.  I had my first two losing days of the month this week, and it was so unusual that I actually thought that I lost for the week until I just looked back at my records.  Two sick aces on the river cost me $200.00 (and potentially $300.00).  In the Flamingo's weekly freeroll tournament on Friday, I cashed for $100.00.  I finished in 22nd place out of 78 players, and was two spots from earning another $100.00.  I was under the gun with a stack of 6,000 and the blinds at 2,000/4,000.  I picked up king-queen and thought that it would likely be better than the random two hands that I'd be dealt in the blinds, so I shoved.  A guy with ace-three went all-in after me, and we saw a king-high flop, and a three-out ace on the river...  If I win that pot, I'd definitely make the top twenty for an extra $100.00, and possibly go on to make the top 10 for another $100.00.  The other ugly ace on the river came last night in a 1/2 cash game at the Flamingo.  I lost about $50.00 on this hand, and could have easily lost more.  I was in the big blind with 9 8, and the two-heart flop came 8 9 8.  The small blind bet 12, I called, and everyone else folded.  The villain bet another 12 when a non-heart jack hit the turn, and I again called.  The river brought the ace of hearts, and the villain checked.  I assumed the villain put me on the flush draw or an ace, and I "value bet" 25.  I had great success with value bets at this table, and was up about $200.00 before this hand began.  The villain called, and I turned my hand over, saying, "I flopped the full house."  The villain then flipped over A 8, for a rivered full house.  Oh joy...  I hated losing the hand, but I was shocked that he didn't raise me.  It's not going to be easy for me to lay down there.  I'm also glad that I played the hand slow, because I don't think he's going anywhere after flopping three 8's with an ace kicker.  Regardless, this session allowed me to recoup most of the money that I lost in a Caesar's 1/2 game earlier last night.  Going into the Caesar's session with my  brother Pete, I had mentioned that despite winning in no-limit cash games, I hadn't been making any sets with my pocket pairs.  Low and behold, I have 61 in my stack when I see an unraised flop from the big blind with 2 2.  The flop comes K 2 8.  After a bet of 20 and a call, I move my final 59 in.  Both players call.  The turn and river seem inconsequential, and when it's time to show, the initial bettor shows pocket kings.  Low and behold...  The awesome part was seeing the guy work his stack up to 800 with very fishy plays and suckouts, then proceeding to rack up and leave before I was able to catch him in a hand or two.  Yippee...

Let's move on to news where I don't get mortally crushed in hands...  Before reaching the final thirty in the Flamingo freeroll, I folded ace-queen with my short stack, and had I shoved, I would have lost to pocket kings.  Nice fold to make $100.00...  After the freeroll, I played my first 3-6 limit at the Monte Carlo since returning to town, and I made almost another $100.00 there.  The freeroll started at 10:00 a.m., and now it's about 6:00 p.m. and I'm starving, having only eaten an energy bar all day long since waking up before 7:00 a.m.  Up almost two hundred for the day, I decided to treat myself with some of my poker comps...

Just a little snack from the Paris buffet.  My friend Nick had actually eaten at the Paris buffet earlier in the week, and his assessment was dead on.  Although it's not bad, there's actually not a lot to choose from when compared to some of the other buffets that I've eaten at.  That being said, I made due with the prime rib, and the crab, and the shrimp.  I'm a trooper...  ;)  Speaking of Nick, he was in town with his wife and a few friends, and I got to meet him and watch him play a little poker.

I was a bit skeptical of Nick's plan at first, and it had nothing to do with his poker-playing ability.  Nick arrived in town very late Sunday night/early Monday morning, and this was presumably after being awake all day Sunday.  He then proceeded to get three hours of sleep his first two nights in town, followed by five hours before waking up Wednesday, the day of the tournament.  The tourney didn't begin until 2:00 p.m., and I thought Nick might just crash right on the table.  Nick had told me that three hours of sleep per night was his norm in Vegas, but to his credit, he didn't look like a zombie when he showed up at the Venetian.  The $400.00 no-limit bounty tourney paid $100.00 bounties to a player each time that they could eliminate another player from the tournament.  The tourney ended up with 145 entrants, and Nick's start was a reminder that you don't have to sprint out of the gate to start a tournament.  After starting with 12,000 in chips, Nick dipped down to about 5,000 before getting hands to play and actually connecting with them.  Over the course of the tourney, Nick managed to knock out four players (making this his own personal freeroll), and he finished 31st, with the top 15 making the cash.  An untimely table change brought about his demise, as Nick was repeatedly was dealt second-best hands shortly after arriving.  I enjoyed railing Nick during the tourney, despite the fact that he decided to curse my football team before leaving town.  Nick told me that if the Steelers didn't do well this season, it shouldn't come as a surprise, because that was one team that he bet on to win the Super Bowl.  Nick hadn't even been back home for a full day yet when it was announced that star running back Le'Veon Bell would be suspended for the first four games of the season.  Damn you Nick!!!  ;)

*** Sorry about that 4-hour break that I just took that you were completely unaware of.  I took a nap.  Funny thing is, when I woke up around noon, I considered going to the Strip and playing poker, but instead I decided to write this entry.  I hit the wall HARD at 4:00 p.m.  Glad that I wasn't on the Strip...  :)  My nap gave Nick time to finish his blog post about the tournament that I just wrote about.  You can find his write-up at the link given above for him.  Also, back to my Paris buffet, I meant to say something that will resonate with two groups particularly - that would include those who have been longtime followers of my original blog, and also my Facebook friends.  'Bikini Hill & The Strip' is the blog that you will find at that link, and I've been writing there for almost five years now.  You can get to know me better there, as that blog is a hodgepog of stuff about my personal life.  Anyway, have you ever noticed that I never post pictures of food that I've prepared?  If you see a photo of food from me, it's always something that someone else has cooked up...  :)  Just sitting here thinking how that Rio breakfast buffet and that Paris dinner have eaten into my comps...  ;)

Let's talk about angleshooting for a minute.  I have now seen something occur twice in my last two weeks of playing.  About two weeks back in a 1/2 no-limit game, a guy threw in about 17 from his stack for a raise, and then fidgeted, saying that he didn't mean to raise that much.  I remembered this as the hand played out and he eventually ended up tabling A A and winning the pot.  I don't know if any of the other players remember this preflop "move," but if so, no one mentioned it.  Fast forward to my recent 3-6 limit session at the Monte Carlo.  This lady in her 40's or 50's is obviously a regular in the room, based on how she was addressed by the staff.  Well, the Monte Carlo actually uses one and two-dollar chips in this game, the ones being white, and the twos being beige, or "off white."  She had been in the game for about half an hour when she tossed three beige chips into the pot, followed by the statement that she "didn't mean to raise."  She then proceeded to bet every street like someone who had pocket aces.  If you've ever played limit before, you know what I'm talking about.  She feared no card as she threw in her chips.  Unfortunately, everyone folded and she never showed.  I say unfortunately, because I would bet that she had A A, and I was being social with the guy I was sitting by.  I don't normally get too chatty in no-limit games, but I'm more relaxed in limit.  Also, I had flopped sets with 3 of 4 pocket pairs.  I was getting no cards, but when I did, I was flopping sets and winning pots.  I actually made quads and a $50.00 bonus on one hand.  This guy actually nicknamed me "The Viper" because of how "I'd wait..., I'd wait..., and then I'd STRIKE..."  Back to the alleged aces, if she would have indeed turned over that hand, I was going to pop off to my friend, "Do you remember how she 'raised by mistake' preflop?  That's the second time I've seen that angleshooting crap in two weeks with aces..."  Anyway, she never showed, but what a bunch of garbage.  I also heard the classic line in another limit game from a female player about a week back, "well, since no one else is betting..."  RUN, RUN DUMMY, RUN!!!  :)  I don't even remember which movie that's from at the moment...

Anyway, I hope that you're enjoying my poker exploits.  A long time ago, when my brother Pete brought me to the WPT's Five Diamond Classic to watch the pros at the Bellagio, and then to the Mirage to play 3-6 limit live (I remember asking what was better, a straight or a flush), I became HOOKED on this game.  I told my brother that I wanted to become really good, and asked what the secret was.  Pete said that I just had to see hands, meaning that I had to watch lots and lots of hands.  I'm happy to say that I'm on pace to pay all of my monthly bills with my poker winnings this month.  Hopefully this will continue, and I'll keep improving...  I'm getting to the point where I'm HATING to have a losing session for the day, and I think that will only benefit me.

That's all for now, but my poker-playing friend Katie will be in town this week, so I should have another guest star for next week's post.  I hope that you have a great week, and I'll see you soon!




  1. Sorry about your steelers....hehe. I bet the overy on wins for the season (10.5) and a small amount on them to win the super bowl, but I wouldn't be upset if they ended 7-9 and missed the playoffs.

    I greatly appreciate you railing me at the tournament and talking over some things with me between hands. Your advice and just being there helped me stay patient and end up with the 4 bounties. It was a great experience, and I would gladly play again!

    As for the "accidental raises" I've seen those on occasion, and I'd say it's 95% AA or KK, and 5% legit.

    Good luck at the tables, and again, it was nice meeting you!

    1. I thoroughly enjoyed it Nick, and I look forward to watching some football with ya in the fall...

    2. I thoroughly enjoyed it Nick, and I look forward to watching some football with ya in the fall...

    3. I thoroughly enjoyed it Nick, and I look forward to watching some football with ya in the fall...