Sunday, March 3, 2013

Collection Weekend

It's Sunday afternoon.  Yesterday, I spent the day driving around Delaware cashing in some winning NFL parlay cards.  I'm heading back out to Vegas in two weeks, and want to use the cash on some MLB futures... 
First, I drove to Dover Downs, cashed in, and then headed immediately to Delaware Park, and cashed a fat parlay on the AFC Championship /NFC Championship / AFC Superbowl . . .  My plan was to just play the 7:00 pm tournament, and not risk dumping half the winnings on cash.  Yet, I arrived at Del Park at 1:30, and could not resist at least a few hours of $1/2.
I sat with $300, and intended to leave for dinner at exactly 4:00.  Between 1:30 and 3:45, I got virtually no playable hands, and made very few moves.  My stack was down to $225 when I flopped the nutz.  I follow two limpers and check my option from the big blind with K9 off.  Flop comes down 9(d) 9(c) K(d).  Um. Cool.  The limper who was under the gun was steaming after taking a few bad beats (two flopped str8ts - one to a rivered flush and one to a rivered boat).  I obviously want to to get my stack in the middle here (yes, what a novel approach).  I decide to check the flop with two people behind me.  UTG bets out $15, and woman calls.  I call.  The turn is the 8(d), completing the flush draw.  I check again, UTG bets $20, and woman calls. I have $205 behind, and want to set up about a half-pot river shove.  I decide a raise to $80.  If someone has a flush, a 9 or maybe even a big K, I hopefully will not loose them.  So I make it $80, and UTG snap calls (woman folds).  Pot is $225, and I have $130 behind.  Pretty good spot.  River is the worst card in the deck - the K (board reads 99K8K.  I shove.  UTG asks, "you have the king?"  I stare intently at the Del Park logo in the center of the table.  He eventually says he "has to call to keep me honest," and tables A9 . . . I cashed out shortly thereafter.
The 7:00 pm tournament began with an interesting hand.  About halfway through Level 1, with stacks of $12,500 and blinds at $25 / $50, I look down at JJ in early position.  I raise to $225 and get three callers.  Pot is $925.  Flop is 3(d) 5(c) T(h).   I lead out for $750 and get called in two spots.
On the turn, the pot is getting bloated ($3,175).  Turn card is an 8(c).  I bet $2,000.  First dude folds.  Second guy tanks, and then shoves all in.  He has me covered.  I've discussed this hand by email with a few folks last night, and got some mixed opinions.  For me, though, this was a fairly easy fold based on the following:
  • It's the first level of a decent event.  While a double up early is always nice, those $12,000 chips will mean shit in six hours if I play well enough to stick around;
  • I have no read on villain.  He could be a good player; or he could be a total ass.  I have no clue.
  • If I fold, I have $9,500 chips left.  Plenty of chips left to make a run.
  • I fairly confidently rule out an over-pair (although, who knows . . . maybe he is a donkey and decided to take KK or AA three ways rather than repop preflop).
  • But I cannot rule out the possibility that he called preflop with 33, 55, TT or even possible 35, all of which have me beat.  While his shove seems aggressive -- like he's trying to push me off my hand, the only thing I'm really beating here is a bluff.  Am I really going to risk my tournament life ten minutes in on the possibility that he's making a move?   Is HE stupid enough to try and make a move for stacks this soon?
I always find it strange when someone shoves in a spot like this, so early on.  It's happened to me several times, and I've folded the best hand each time.  Well, nothing was different last night.  I folded, and dude showed K high - pure bluff.  Well played, I guess.
After the hand, I commented to the woman next to me that the dude would be gone by the first break.  I mean, I don't think I played the hand very tricky.  Not too difficult to put me on an overpair.  The dude was definitely taking a chance that I was "good enough" to lay my hand down.  Either that, or he just made a real bad read and put me on a big Ace or some shit.
If that hand comes up an hour later, I prolly call (unless I have a real good read by then).  But, I'm not stacking off in the first level with a mere pair.  Maybe I'm too weak, but I'm OK with my play.  Of course, as per my prediction, this guy was gone middle of level three after he called an all in with KJ, and then called another all in with his sort stack with 56 suited (wish I had seen these hands before he shoved on my JJ!!!!).  I on the other hand made it from the initial 181 runners down to 26 . . . (unfortunately, only 18 got paid. . . .).
Anyway, curious whether anyone makes a call in that spot, given the action, given the timing, and given the lack of any read..


  1. Phil Hellmuth would have made that laydown.



  2. Yeah. I should have berated the guy Phil style afterwards!!!

  3. Hello PPP, you said K was the worst card on the river in the cash game. How about an ace? You would have been devastated!

    1. True. I guess the K was second worst!

    2. Also, I have cashed DD parlay tickets at DP. I don't think you have to cashout at the location you place them.

  4. I'm folding there all day long. I read that as either 2 small pair or a flopped set hoping for a call. Possibly 2-4 or 2 clubs on a semi bluff. Either way I don't want to shove my stack in the first level.

  5. That's a very easy fold in your situation, I'm not busting out of a tournament in the first level with a pair of Jacks, post flop or PRE flop. No way. They guy wants to make a big bluff like that that early, fine, as you predicted, his tournament life was short lived. If you flop a set, that's another story,. but with just the pair, that's an insta-fold. Maybe you think about it a little more if you knew the guy and knew this move was in his arsenal, but not the way you describe it.

    Now, next topic, I guess I'm gonna sound kinda dumb here, but regarding your comment on getting the sports tickets paid off. It seems to me that it wasn't very long ago that a poker dealer I know in Vegas told me that Nevada is the only state in the Union that allows sports wagering. Clearly, that isn't the case. Is it only recently that they've allowed this in your neck of the woods, or was the guy full of crap at the time he told me that?

    Back in Vegas in two weeks? Should coincide with my next trip up there. DM me on twitter if you want to get together.

    1. Rob, Delaware allows limited betting on NFL - only parlays and teasers (basically, sucker bets). That was all they got grandfathered in for. I ty to avoid it, but some weekends I'll stop off on the way to Jets games or AC and place a bet or two . . . (since I no longer bet on-line).

      Would love to see you in a few weeks. Might be tough, though. We are going with a group of us, who all turned into old men this year (40), so I might not even get to play poker..... If not, I'll be in town for 13 days in July during the WSOP, and hopefully will be able to see a bunch of folks then!

    2. A group of guys turning 40 huh? So, will strippers be involved? Or are you "too old" for that? :)

      Definitely July then if not before.

    3. Some folks may find it hard to believe, but I've never been to a Vegas strip club. Strip clubs have never really been my thing.

      Plus, after spending some time in Cleopatra's in Montreal, all other strip joints just don't seem to make sense . . . . Cleopatra's might be the happiest place on earth (except, of course, for the strippers, some of whom appeared to be near tears). Talent, upon talent . . . a "hands on" policy . . . and video poker machines in the back . . . It's almost worth busting the passport out in and of itself . . .

  6. No way do you stay with just top pair in level one. Easy fold, just frustrating when you see someone make such a play, knowing those chips will e going to someoneelse anyway.