Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Dealing with a large down-swing

I'm currently in the midst of a 100+ BB down-swing and as painfull as it is to talk are many of the key hands. Feel free to comment on any bad plays you see.
I re-raise a clueless player on the river and he actually had a hand, though he played it extremely poorly. He would play Kx the same way.
Same clueless player as above. I almost re-raised the river, putting him on QJ or TJ.
Maybe this was a poor river bet, but the donkey would have paid me off with any piece of the flop.
It's hard to put an opponent on a runner, runner flush.
Maybe I should have checked behind on the river but I put him on a lower pocket pair. What a passive donkey.
A large junk kicking by a donator.
Another kick in the junk by a feeder.
Just your basic suckout by an ATM machine.
Super annoying hand. At least the donkey played it poorly and saved me a couple bets.
A 2-outer by a massive donkey.
Looks familar doesn't it. Another 2-outer by a huge donkey with 55.
A huge brick on the river! Anybody go LAG and re-raise the turn?
Brick house again. Sing it with me! I'm a brick..........houuussseeeee.
Donkey calls one off on the flop with nothing and hits running trips.
A blind defense gone very, very bad. I should have just called preflop and then check raised the flop to try and take control of the hand.

Most of this down-swing is just variance, but it's very, very annoying. I hate losing to donkeys!! To take my mind off of these beats, I've been mixing in a little Omaha, O8 and NLHE tourneys with good results. However, I still plan to spend most of my poker time moving up the LHE food chain.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

B&M Action

Well, I made it to Ameristar last Friday night at about 6:00 p.m. and was a little sad when the 6/12 LHE list didn't fill up, so I had to stay at 3/6 or move all the way up to 15/30. I wimped out and stayed at my nice juicy table with 7 loose limpers and 1 LAG.

My session started off rough as I badly misplayed a hand that I would have won (gave my opponent too much credit) and then had to fold QQ on the turn when an A hit and I got raised. A couple of the players even started to tease me that I was weak. This didn't bother me though. I knew it was just a matter of time before I blasted the hell out of them. Sure enough, a couple orbits later one of the aformentioned teasers got into a raising war with me on a board of T-6-2 rainbow. He slowed down on the turn but paid off my KK with T8o. Nice hand sir.

The most interesting hand of the night went like this: 3 loose limpers to me and I call OTB with 9s-Ts. Blinds come along to see a flop of Qs-8s-2h. It checks to me and I bet to build a pot and weed out a few players. To my surprise, only 2 people call. Turn: 6d, it checks to me again and I bet. (Some would argue that checking here is correct and I think it's okay, but I prefer to bet b/c it forces my opponents to call AND win at showdown. In other words, for either of them to win, they have to call AND I have to miss my good draw. It gives me an additional way to win the pot. I also got the feeling like they didn't have anything.) Only 1 of them called and the river was the 3d. He checks again and I fire one last bet hoping that he would fold an A, low pair or busted draw. To my dismay he calls and says, "Two pair," showing 23o. Ahh, you played the powerful 23o, nh sir! This player went on to drop over $500 at the table and left saying, "I can't believe it, I usually win at this game." Bahahahaha.

As for me, I finished up $275 on the night :) I really need to play more B&M.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Playing some live Texas Holdem tonight - time to review tells

The wifey is giving me a free pass to go out tonight after work (thanks Babycakes!) which is really a pretty big deal considering we have 3 kids under 6 years old that require a TON of time and attention. I'm not sure why she's in such a great mood, maybe it was that BIG O that I gave her the other night ;) and no, she wasn't faking!

So in preparation of live play, I'm reviewing some tells. Here are signs of strong hands, typically:

1) Guards cards (they are valuable!)

2) Act non-threatening (please don't fold, I have a monster)

3) Genuine smile (I'm really going to stick it to you!)

4) Strange behavior (I'm going to act like an idiot so he'll want to call and see what I have - Vinny Vinh jumping jacks on WPT)

5) Look down at chips after flop (time to get my money in with the best of it!)

6) Good posture (sitting up b/c excited about hand)

7) Leaning forward (ready to attack with a good hand)

8) Quick glance at cards (my cards are really good and I don't want anybody to see them)

9) Plays a hand while stacking chips (I want to stack my chips but my hand is just too good!)

Here are weak tells:

1) Shuffle cards (I don't care if these flip over b/c they are garbage)

2) "My cards look good" (trying to act strong b/c weak)

3) Appears ready to bet (trying to act strong b/c weak)

4) Cover mouth when betting (Subconsciously saying, "I don't have much")

5) "I dare you" (trying to act strong when weak)

6) Looking back at hole cards (if you have it, you know it!)

7) Raising voice (trying to act threatening b/c weak)

8) Eye pupil dilation (full of shit)

9) Tossing for distance (again, trying to act threatening b/c weak)

In summary, when a player is acting strong they are usually weak and vice versa. This obviously is not true of all players, but I think it's true for most. The two tells that I tend to use the most are the "look down" and body posture.

Even more important are betting patterns. Do they play lots of pots or very few. Do they raise with strong hands, strong draws or weak hands. What I'll look for are the loose limpers. I've wrote about this extensively in previous posts, but they are your personal ATM machine. Loose limper to you in late position with 88, raise it up and isolate them. Anytime you think you have the best hand preflop and can isolate, raise it! Then, if you still think that you have the best hand post flop, bet, raise and re-raise liberally.

Okay, that's it for now. Have a great weekend and wish me strong hands and good odds!

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Stay Aggressive!

A lot of players will just call a raise or re-raise in a big multi-way pot, which can be a big mistake. If you think you have the best hand, raise and re-raise!! Stay aggressive, especially if you're up against donkeys. Here's a good example:

All the players involved in this hand (except me) had a VPIP of at least 40. I was 99% confident that I had the best hand, plus I had the re-draw to the boat. Gotta love it!

Here is another example:

It's really too bad that somebody didn't have AA ;) and check out my opponents river raise. Yes, he was a monkey.