Thursday Poker: $15/$30 LHE @ Palace on 4/12/2018 (LIVE BLOG)

April 12, 2018

Schedule for this week going as planned. I showed up for PLO @ Palace last night and played what was probably my worst poker of the year. I finished -$800, which doesn’t seem too bad, but I played less than four hours and I felt like I gave it away. I got pretty unlucky once when I flopped a set of tens on a dry board vs a set of kings against a relatively short stack, but the rest of my session I lost chips in spots that were entirely unnecessary and I basically punted my last $150 because… I wanted to leave? I had another $1200 in black chips in my pocket, but the game was quite bad – no His Airness, Mister Magoo was unimpressed with the game also and left early, and Hit&Run didn’t show up until I was over it. Plus, I wasn’t playing good, so I made the wise decision to leave, even though I was 3rd (and possibly 1st) up for the $15/$30 game. Eh. Chalk up the loss and come back the next day when I can start fresh and give it my best.

Everything else aside, I was pretty happy to see the $15/$30 game going with a strong list, but I got word that it broke before midnight, which is not great.

I have an hour massage at 1 PM and then I’m heading straight to the casino. There are currently two 8/16 games going with four players waiting for 15/30 and I’m hoping by the time I get there at a little after 2 PM, they will be pretty close to starting 15/30.

Check back here around 2:30 for live updates!

2:22 PM: And we’re off! There are now three 8/16 games going with only five names on the 15/30 list and it’s not a list that looks like it’s going to start anytime soon. It’s still early though!

I’ll be keeping an eye on what’s happening at Fortune, but I probably won’t end up going there. I stopped taking the medication I use for anxiety a week or two ago and I can feel it trying to creep back when I’m driving, particularly when things get congested. I have zero desire to use meds as a crutch for the rest of my life so this is a problem I’m trying to face head on and hope I can just beat it into submission.

Alas, Fortune has two 20/40 going but I probably won’t be driving there by myself today, even if 8/16 ends up being my only option.

2:30 PM: Solid start to my 8/16 session. I pick up AK in the cutoff first hand, raise it up, peel on Q43 rainbow, jack it up on king turn and check back against two opponents on 9 river, that also brings in a backdoor flush… and small blind tables a set of threes.

No blog regulars in my starting lineup. Only one player in the game that I have any significant history with – maybe even three that I have zero hands with.

3:07 PM: Third game broke and I just moved from a bad main game to what seems like a good feeder. Three regulars in this game, none with nicknames though, and still three players I’ve never seen before.

Flopped a set of 5s against an obvious overpair for a big pot and then got two big bet streets of value with 88 (no diamond) on QT3ddd49 against someone that was basically playing his AK face by capping pre and checking every street postflop.

Still only five names on 15/30 list. 😐

Almost missed him… FBI Guy is in my game.

3:47 PM: Every once in a while I go through a little funk where I feel like I’m suffering from what I can only term as “poker depression.” This can obviously happen when you’re getting creamed for an extended period of time, but right now I feel like I’m experiencing it because the games have been kind of blah lately. The 15/30 still isn’t close to starting and I’m sitting in a rather lame 8/16 game. The Queen just sat on my immediate left and I opened with 87hh and she was my only caller and I never bet against her, so I turn an open-ended straight flush draw but she ends up winning showdown with queen high. It’s moments like that where I think: what the fuck am I even doing here? I don’t want to play 8/16 and I definitely don’t want to play in a below average 8/16 game.

This would be a good example of why poker pros advise against other people quitting their jobs to play poker. It it usually more grueling than glamorous. The bonus of doing this for a living is that I don’t have to be here if I don’t want to be, but my volume is already low lately, so… guess I’m gonna grind it out and hope that 15 game gets off the ground at a decent time.

4:03 PM: Complain about the game condition and right on cue: under the gun opens, two call, MP 3-bets, I call 99 from SB and it gets capped five or six ways. Under the gun checks a J76 flop and the preflop 3-bettor bets flop. I’m next to act and I can check-raise the rest of the field out possibly, but I feel I’m against two strong ranges and I’ve seen UTG player check big hands on the flop plenty of times, so I’m going to play my hand like a weak draw for the time being. Everyone calls.

Turn is a three and it checks to MP again and, interestingly, she pauses and hesitates long enough before betting that I think she’s weak here. I call and so does everyone else.

River pairs the three and I check-call after she snap bets river and one other player also calls. She tables 76 for a counterfeit two pair, I table my hand and it’s good.

Kind of weird that I picked up weakness when she was actually strong and kind of hilarious that she fires river against four opponents when her hand crumbles to pieces.

But yeah, when people are 3-betting 76 suited when three people have already voluntarily raised and called, the game might actually be pretty decent.

4:26 PM: I’ve noticed a certain phenomena with a particular player. He plays pretty well overall, but flies completely off the handles in pots against me.

Last time I played 15/30, I sat down and he had five racks and lost almost all of it to me in spots where I was thinking “what are you doing?”

Two examples from today:

We put in four bets on 733hh flop in a 3-way pot, turn 5, I call, river 7, we all check and he has a total airball and I win with A6hh.

Just now, he limps utg, I raise TT, a tighter player 3-bets small blind, and I put the cap on five ways. Flop is 853 and everyone check-calls me. Turn pairs the 3 and my new best friend donks and I raise the rest of the field out. He sort of chuckles and then 3-bets me and I call. River is a blank and we both check. He shows J4hh and there is only one heart on the board.

Huh? I promise we are not brothers and I pray he doesn’t read my blog.

Always amusing when someone is trying to outplay one person when the pot is multiway.

4:48 PM: Taz showing off his spazzy side here. He opens, I 3-bet 88 and he caps with four other players sticking around. Flop is sexy: QJ8ss. He, and some others, check-call when jack pairs on turn and then Taz check-raises 4s river and caps when I 3-bet and I’m a bit perplexed but when he tables 44 it makes some sense I guess?

Is it too late to erase my whining earlier?

5:11 PM: Just finished +$601 in that “bad” 8/16 game and 15/30 is now starting 8-handed.

Starting lineup: random that looks splashy, bad reg I know from Kitsap, another wild player, a nitty reg on my left, Taz, FBI Guy, and the dude that keeps leveling himself against me.

5:29 PM: We’ve seen how my buddy plays his air, let’s take a look at a big hand:

I raise one limper with AQo and this guy 3-bets from big blind and I cap it. Three or four of us to KK8dd flop and they all check to me. I decide to bet with Ad in my hand and two check-call. Turn is a diamond and I check back. River ace of clubs and I call a bet from big blind and he shows KQcc.

Obviously super aware of his image.

6:01 PM: Good read on the guy in s1. He opens from MP and ends up showing me a set of deuces, which is whatever, but just now, one player limps, he raises cutoff, I call KJo (mistake; should 3-bet given read) and check-call him on QQ33 and river is another queen and I wind up chopping with his 72o.


6:52 PM: Going out of my way to mix it up with s1 by 3-betting the 65dd and wind up riling Taz up instead. He calls it cold from the small blind and I c-bet A74 rainbow flop. They both call and the turn is a jack. This is a clear check. So obviously I bet and get check-raised before rivering the nuts.

There’s an important takeaway here: just because you won a hand doesn’t mean you played it well. Taz is never folding the turn here and I’m never bluffing my way to victory, so my turn bet is just a pure torch. It’s okay to find mistakes in hands you won.

7:17 PM: Second 15/30 game about to start. Maybe it’s the whole people have jobs thing that is going on during the day. 😂

8:04: John Stockton with another big pot assist. I open KJ and he 3-bets button. I call and check-raise KJ3 flop and he 3-bets. I expect to get a check-raise in on turn frequently so I just call. Turn pairs the king, giving me the nuts, and I think this is a card he can actually check back, so I lead and, if he does have a hand like AK, he’s going to raise anyway. That’s what happens and I get 3-bets in again. River is a blank that brings running spades in and he raises me again! I raise and he winds up tabling QTss. I mean, pretty unlucky connection for him, but goodness he just blasts off chips to me. No caution.

8:41 PM: Back-to-back monster pots:

Multiple limpers, there’s a raise, I call 66 on button, Taz 3-bets small blind, and it gets capped six ways. Flop is KT6 with two hearts and it’s capped four ways. Turn is a jack and Taz is still leading. Two calls. I’m getting worried about a set but I still have to raise here. He snap 3-bets, Kitsap player calls, and I’m bowing down into call mode now. River is a Q and it goes bet and raise in front of me and I have a trivial fold. They split. Taz AQhh and Kitsap player AJ.

Next hand Taz is on mega steam and straddles button with all the raises lined up ready to go in. Callers in front of me and how lucky can I be to look down at AA? I raise and I know I’m getting five bets in five ways pre. 🙌🏻

Flop KQT. Hate it. It goes bet and raise in front of me and my hand has been reduced to call down mode already. Turn is uglier: 9. I call and I’m heads up to river which brings in the spade draw and gets me a free showdown vs AJ.

9:03 PM: John Stockton to the rescue! One limp, fold tells behind me, I raise A8ss, and it’s four of us to 864 flop. Stockton leads, I raise, and still four of us to king turn. They all check-call me. River is another 8 and Stockton decides to go for the ole check-raise instead of leading out and allows me to get three bets in again. But wait! This is John Stockton we’re talking about here. Hall of Famer. All-time assist leader! He caps it and rolls over 87 for the L.

9:17 PM: Holy shit I’m running bad with big hands. Just got four bets in pre with TT and run it into KQ on QJTJQ. 🤦🏻‍♂️

9:34 PM: I’m having a decent 15 session but only because John Stockton keeps showing up with the sick alley-oop passes.

Okay, I have now flopped a set with three straight pocket pairs and this time I got the win despite another ugly runout: 76289. Fortunately I got it to heads up after the flop and I’m pretty sure they had a flush draw only.

10:13 PM: Feeder game is off the chains right now, with chips flying into the pot like crazy. Taz just left my game to go there and we picked up a bad reg and…


As far as I know, Snowflake is the best limit hold’em player that still resides in Washington state. I’ve only played with him a handful of times but I’ve heard he’s a solid winner in limits as high as 100/200 that he plays when he goes to Commerce. The few times I have played with him, I have been impressed. He’s not a tight-solid abc type of player – he’s in there exploiting. Definitely not someone I’m happy to see sit down at my table.

10:53 PM: Joker at my table now. I raise under the gun with AA and he 3-bets and we are heads up so I just call. 30/60 Overs now. I check-raise him on 995 and he calls. Turn is a 4; I bet and he raises. Wonderful. Got him right where I want him. I 3-bet. Then he caps it. Really? If he caps here with KK-TT he’s just an idiot so now I have to think I’m beat and just call down and he shows me the T9cc, a great hand to attack my weak under the gun opening range.


11:43 PM: Made the mistake of bringing up hip-hop with Snowflake and we haven’t stopped talking rap music for an hour now.

I’m running pretty bad. Lost flush under flush and then this gem.

Cutoff opens, Scrappy Doo raises button and I cap QQ. Flop is QJx and I check-raise Scrappy and they both call. Turn is a 9; I bet, cutoff calls, Scrappy Doo raises, I 3-bet and the cutoff ca- wait… what’s he doing? Capping? This nit is capping it?! Noooo! Scrappy folds and I check-call river and lose to KT.

I’m close to even for this 15/30 game which is bittersweet. I’m losing with some monster hands so I guess I’m somewhat thankful I’m still up?

12:48 AM: Flop a set of 7s against Snowflake and he doesn’t even call me with top pair on the river.

Raise one limper with AK and the small blind donks out on A24 two diamonds and then check-raises me on the turn while doing that thing where he’s showing his neighbor his cards like “can you believe this fucking hand I have?” I suppose that could be my cue to fold, but I have an ace and a king so I call. River king. It would be way too passive to not raise here so I go ahead and do that I’m happy when he just calls and unhappy whenhe tables 53.

1:44 PM: Snowflake and I seem to have a lot in common. Girl next to us is trying to describe some tool to us so we can tell her what it is and we are both like “I dunno,” and Snowflake says “the only things I know about are music, movies, and sports. And poker.”

And I’m like:

Did we just become best friends?

2:11 AM: No, I think not. He opens cut, I 3-bet KK and we get it capped on T65 two clubs and I feel like I should be calling down now because I think my range looks super strong and he should know that. He barrels off on A and T run out and shows me… KQ of clubs, which is a bit surprising.

2:21 AM: Been waiting for this to happen: I missed the action up until showdown, but The Flea is out of position on the river on a king high board and it goes check-check and he turns QQ face up and places a chip on his card to tip the dealer as he pushes his cards forward and… the other player turns over KT.

YES. He’s had that coming for a while.

Well, this session is just never going to get off the ground. I 3-bet QQ and someone caps it. Flop is T85 and I’m the only bettor. The preflop capper calls me down before raising me on a final board of T8566 and I call and lose to TT. I am now stuck about $20 in this 15/30 session and I’m ready to call it a night.

2:50 AM: From The Joker:


3:28 AM: Cashed out +$136 for the 15/30 session and finished +$737 for the day. I guess a decent result considering how many monster hands I lost with in the bigger game.

Not really sure what my plan is tomorrow. We are supposed to go out with my wife’s side of the family but she was sick tonight and if she needs to stay home I’m not really sure how that will affect our day. Next for sure blog will be on Sunday for the $225 tournament!

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