Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Mmmm baby pairs

First, before I get into the story, I'd like to say that I'm inordinately pleased that I got to bust G-Rob for $25 in the $25NL last night. I didn't save the hand histories, but basically, I hit my set of 7s on the turn and his Q to match his AQ came on the river and BOOM!

* * *

So, anyway, I was going to pass entirely on the casino last weekend because it's cutting into my, well, life - staying up until 4 am on a Friday sort of kills your weekend, unless all you're doing is playing poker - but my friend R pinged me on Tuesday or Wednesday and said hey he's going to be in town and wanted to take me up on my offer of playing with (and staking) him into the baby NL game at Trump. Ok, twist my arm.

I leave work early on Friday, and after some miscommunication, R gets there (I gave him the wrong area code for the poker room, whoops) and I'm already in the main NL game, so he waits around for a bit until they open up a feeder game, and eventually gets moved into my game. We're both stuck in the game - he had a set of jacks vs a set of kings, and I had a couple of bad sucker-outers against me. R is sitting around $300 in chips (and he's in the game for $500) but not going up or down much at all. At one point I get KK that flops a set cracked by a moron who stayed in with the flush draw, and I tell R that at this point I'm getting up and going to dinner otherwise I'm killing someone. I inform him that he can accompany me, but he is not required to, because if he doesn't want to, I'm making Slim go eat dinner with me and Slim doesn't have a choice in the matter (plus, he'd already offered, kind soul that he is, since he saw me so pissed off. Have I mentioned I totally love my boys?).

R decides to go to dinner with me and while we sit down, I can't help myself and I blurt out "Ok, I need to tell you a few things about your play," as there are a couple of mistakes that he's making. I tell him three things:

  1. If you raise pre-flop, do not bet the same amount when the flop comes down, as that says "oy, I am weak but I feel that I must put in a bet because I raised preflop". R did this once, and the guy sitting next to me, whom I play with a lot, looks at me and says "Did you teach him anything?"

  2. If 8 or more people limp in, and you're the BB, raise to 50, and if the under-the-gun limper folds, everyone else will fold and you'll take the pot down right there. Our whole table had been doing this constantly - they were very passive and we saw a lot of flops.

  3. Baby pairs are your friend. Take a look at your stack, and if someone raises even 10% of your stack, you should call, unless there's a re-raise in front of you, because if you hit, you are so going to get paid off. If you don't hit, you can toss them on the flop; but 11% of the time, you're going to hit, so you're ahead if you call only 10% of your stack.

So, we get back to the table after dinner, and about 3 hands in, I get 99 about UTG+2, and limp in with my $5 (since both the players to my right limped, too). Of course, 6 other players limp in too. R is in the BB, so of COURSE he takes this moment to put my lessons to use and raises to $50, with a smirk at me. And $50 is just a little too much for me to call with 99, even if I know that R is totally making a move. Dammit.

The hand of the night:
About 15-20 minutes later, R is on the button, and the guy to my left, who's a decent player opens the betting at $30 (as a reminder, the blinds are $2/$5). Everyone folds to R, who puts his $30 in, as does the solid guy in the SB. The BB mucks.

Flop comes down: Q 3 3 rainbow

SB checks, Initial Raiser (IR) bets $40, R calls $40, SB raises to $140.
IR pushes for $355.

R thinks, and counts his chips and eventually makes a crying call of the $355 leaving $220 behind. (at this point I say to my friend J on my right that I have no idea what R is doing, or he's got QQ, and I'm pretty sure it's the latter)

The SB goes into the tank, and is really disturbed by all of this, and eventually calls the $355.

The turn is a 5. SB checks, R pushes all in for $220 more, SB sighs and with $1200 in the pot now, has to call, and he does so.

The river card is a brick, and R turns over...

wait for it...

... his pocket pair of 3's. The boy flopped QUADS and got paid off by TWO people! SB later told me he had AQ, and the initial raiser had pocket AA.

I am such a good teacher. Plus, since I staked him, I had 50% of his profit, cha ching.

He then leans over to me and said "I had to push, right? I didn't have any other choice..." I look at him and arch an eyebrow, and the guy continues, "Well I was sure I had [the SB] beat, and [R] raises on anything..." which started me laughing because before the dinner break, R didn't raise at ALL. Granted, after dinner he loosened up and started being more aggressive, but still.