Saturday, February 17, 2007


I played in my local 3 table MTT montly game last night and cahsed for the 3rd straight month. (1st, 1st, 4th). I feel my game is progressing very well, as I am cashing in even more difficult weekly games like the Hoy. If I can get good at cashing at a large field, like the 60-90 player WWdN or the Mookie (like the Hoy a VERY tough field), I will have to consider finally moving up levels.

But then again, who can move up levels without building a bankroll as it is still neigh impossible to make a deposit anywhere.

I dont think my aggression has been particularly good, and my stud game is still a work in progress, but my trapping has been very good as of late. Apparently I have a gift for looking weak ;)

I had some great hands from last night, one if which will be a OMM episode! I think you'll find it a real thinker!

But I can tell you this. I REALLY seemed to have pissed someone off last night. I am not sure who, but neither scenario was anything but excellent from me. (IMHO)

1st Scenario: I am card dead for a long time, but we are 7 handed, so I decide to try a "test". If I raise UtG, could I isolate or steal the blinds. THIS IS AN IMPORTANT TEST. You should be running this test once a level (I learned this from Phil Gordon). Always know, at each level, your steal options. So, I raise UtG with 74s knowing darn well I am in trouble if anyone raises or I get alot of action. Folds around to the monster stack and after thinking he calls. Now this is a horrible play by him for 2 reasons, and good for 1 reasons. Its bad because he should be looking to pick on short stacks with 1/3 of the field already eliminated. And 2, he could have just raised. It was good, however, in that he had position. The others fold. So, I know my place for the level and I am satisfied. I expect to lose the hand and move on with my button coming up. But a funny thing happens. The flop is 44Q. Oops. I hit a big one and there is no way he has a 4 here. I weak check, and after looking at me and assuming I cant have a 4 because I raised UtG, he makes a RECKLESS move and pushes all in! WHY? I suspect he thought I had a pair and he was looking to accumulate chips with his AQ TPTK. Most idiots would call with their JJ and send their chips his way. That's, I suspect, how he got that stack. But I HAD the 4 and insta-called. He actually mouthed the word "what", and after the cards dealt out and the chips pushed to me, said "I figured you could not have a 4 pushing from EP". I did not say anything, but who pushes his monster stack into a pot of basically 7 big bets!?!?!?

The second one was final table. 5 players left I think (pays 5). I am again making a steal with 36s. I had position with the button, the two players on my right folded, and the SB was short stacked but could get away, so I figured he would. I was wrong. He pushes and its basically a pot size re-raise. But I know:
1. I have two live cards.
2. If he does not have a pair, I think I have to call here and take a stab at knocking someone out.

in his favor: I was 0 for 4 in knock out attempts at the final table thus far.
in my favor: I was even more sure he did not have a pair as he started to play with his cards. It was almost like he wanted me to know he had two big cards like KQ. I sat there for a WHILE thinking through this (out loud as usual) to the amusement of the table. I even said in Ivy fashion, "this would be a sick call dude".

So, I call and he has AK. 4 blank and a 3 on the river and he is out. I dont think he was upset, but I dont think anyone can say it was stupid.

I tried so hard to play aggressive with 4 left, but players kept getting cards and I kept getting a 2 as part of my hand. I mean really alot. And the MONSTER (more than all other players combined) was on my left all this time. I raise, he would push me off. UGH.

We push chips around for a while, but the blinds are killing our ability to play.

Finally, I called a raise with QT and the flop is QJT. Now my money is going in, knowning darn well someone has a K and that K is calling. Fine. I am a favorite. I push, big stack reluctantly folds (despite his having odds to call with anything) and the guy on my right calling with the 9. The turn is a K and IGHN. But I was HAPPY that it took a draw getting there and me getting my money in ahead, to knock me out.


Geoff said...

Can you elaborate more on the "test"? Thanks.

columbo (at eifco dot org) said...

sure. In a tournament setting, you need to know you steal % at each level. If you steal % is high and you are not stealing, you are losing equity with each hand. the best way to gauge this % is to make attempts to steal the blinds to "test the waters" and determine how much resistance you will encounter, what the "pain point" is (the amount where NO ONE will call), and how loose some of the pre-flop calls are.