Friday, May 16, 2008

finally time for some poker

I finally had a day off from soccer and side job misery, plus the wife went out, leaving me home with kids on a school night, which gave me time for some poker. I started off by purchasing PokerTracker 3, which I have been using in beta. I like the HUD though it's still a bit buggy, and I don't like that I have to manually enter tourney results even when Poker Academy Prospector does a pretty good job figuring out results on its own. However, it looks like they will be actively developing it and fixing bugs and I'm hopeful it will become a kickbutt software product. Since I'm in the software industry myself, I tend to be a bit over-critical of software, but this one looks like it will end up pretty good.

On to the poker. Played 3 tourneys last night. In the first, I came in third. Memorable had was a stone cold blind steal attempt with 94o - blinds were pretty tight but big blind calls anyway. Crap! Flop comes something like QT5 - missing me in every way. Big blind checks to me. My first instinct is to simply give this one up, but then I find my balls and think to myself "this guy hasn't made any moves that I've seen, he seems tight and straightforward, let me try a bet here". I bet and he folds. Whew!

Second tourney was a disaster - out in 3 hands with AKs. Flop comes a K and a known calling station calls my 3/4 pot bet. Turn completes one draw, I bet out, he calls again, turns out he had that draw JT and now has a straight. I go broke on TPTK against a bad player. Oh well, it happens.

Third tourney I take second place - one guy in the tourney is a -34% according to sharkscope, with over $11,000 lost. His graph is straight down. In about 1/3 of the tourneys he's played in, he places dead last. This is not even funny. In one of the first hands, he calls with A4s, misses the flop with no pair and no draw, and calls a huge bet anyway! They get it all in on the turn - top pair vs Ace high - only one of the 3 aces can win, and of course it comes. He doubles up. One guy at the table (a modest winner, currently multi-tabling) starts berating the guy in chat until I say "stop tapping the glass, please". He replies "lol, you're right"

This player's MOD must be to go all in early and pray for the double up, since he's such a bad player he needs early success to just cover all his mistakes. I keep watching him - he makes a pot size bet on almost every flop he enters. He's fairly loose (35%), but not ridiculously so). He occasionally gets his bet raised and either folds (has nothing) or calls if he caught any piece of the flop at all, or even with 2 overcards! (I saw him call an all-in twice with 2 overcards, once against me)

Unfortunately, nobody seems to be able to get the cards to exploit this guy. One time, I get a walk with 83 in the big blind and flop two pair. I check knowing the pot sized bet is coming, it comes, and I checkraise him. There were 2 spades on the flop - I figured I would be dead if he had even one high spade as he would call and then one of his overcards would hit, but luckily he folds.

We get down to 4 handed and this guy is now the only big stack and pushing people around. My cards have turned to poo and I basically have to let him do this. I am second stack at the table and there's a shorty so I'm basically waiting him out to get into the money. Finally the shorty goes all-in, bad player calls, and so does player 4. Flop comes, and bad player bets pot! player 4 folds and bad player loses on something like a K9 that hadn't hit the flop at all. Ugh. Player 4 (who was the same multitabler guy berating the bad player earlier) says that he folded the best hand and they could have knocked the shorty out without the stupid bet. Bad player does this again a few hands later with me vs. the shorty!

It eventually gets to heads up - me vs. the awful player, and of course he wins when some draw hits against my low pair (I didn't have enough chips to put up much of a fight anyway). I look one last time as his sharkscope graph - he had 111 first place finishes out of 1500 tourneys played (7%), now he's got 112, and he's taken a small bite out of the 11K lost. Ooof.

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