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$2/$5 NL 😮 @ Palace 4/21/2018 (Live Blog)

April 21, 2018

Yesterday I made a very unceremonious return to Fortune and a had a day to forget. I got absolutely throttled. When I cashed out I thought I was booking a record loss, but I thought I was in for $4500 when I was only in for $4000 so I actually came up just shy of my loss single-session loss of all-time. However, I did punt a full buy-in in the 1/3 game before moving to 20/40 and finished -$245 there and combined with my -$2135 at 20/40, my overall -$2380 day may very well be the worst day I’ve had since my poker career (re)started in 2011. I believe my worst session in that span is -$2300, but I’m not sure what my worst overall day is – I think it was yesterday.

As I mentioned, I absolutely punted my first $300 in the 1/3 game. I’d share details of the hand, but it was so bad, I’m just going to save some face here. Needless to say, it started my session off with a bad taste and I was immediately wondering if I should be even be playing poker. I feel like I play a very good, solidly profitable B-Game and my C-Game almost never shows up, but this 1/3 pot was 100% C-Game and I was just getting started.

My 20/40 session was absolutely miserable. The game wasn’t good and I was running insanely bad. I lost a monster pot where I had A5hh on a KQ9hhh flop where it was two bets five ways preflop, on the flop, and on the turn, before the board paired on the river and I lost to Q9. A solid $800 pot in the wrong direction and that pretty much summed up my session. I won one nice pot when I made kings full of aces with AK and hit one meaningful draw in a decent pot and the rest of my made hands were beat or outdrawn all night and I was whiffing like Mike Zunino in his return to the Mariners lineup last night on all my other draws and unmade starting hands. The frustration levels build quickly when every pot you play is heads up or 3-handed and you are outflopped or outdrawn or picked off every single time.

I wasn’t feeling it. I was running bad and felt physically beat down by the variance, the game wasn’t particularly great, and I had to admit I was playing my C-game. I don’t know if anyone else experiences this, but when I’m running super bad, I feel very transparent. Like I never have anything and they all know it – because it’s true. I’m just missing every single flop. I decided to jet after less than six hours of play and, after dropping The Leak off at Palace, I was home before 10 PM on a Friday night. That doesn’t happen very often.

I’m off to a very lazy, unproductive start to my Saturday. I’ve basically done nothing but drink coffee, play MLB The Show on my PS4, and take a shower.

Checking in on Bravo now and I see Palace has nine games going, but no 15/30 and, holy shit, there is only one person on the list for that game. They do have a 2/5 NL game going though. Jesus. Please don’t let this be the expectation on Saturdays going forward. If 15/30 only goes Thursdays through Mondays, I can live with that. But no 15/30 on Saturdays is insanely bad for my bottom line.

I just had the briefest of thoughts to publish this and not even go play, but there are two 8/16 games going and I suppose it’s better to go play in one of those than to sit at home being lazy. So off I go… and hopefully the 15/30 will start before 5 PM.

2:43 PM: Ouch. The Leak sent me to pick up a medication for her and I’ve been told it’s going to be 30 minutes and she will have my ass if I don’t get it, so session EpTA pushed back to 3:30ish.

3:51 PM: Fresh off a C-game performance, I was dangerously close to being triggered out of even playing today. I left my house to pick up a prescription for my wife around 2:10 on my way to Palace and one hour and forty minutes later I am just now walking in to Palace and I didn’t even get the damn prescription.

Safeway’s pharmacy ended up wasting 30 minutes of my time before telling me they didn’t even have the fucking thing in the building and since we need it today, I went searching for other options… and came away empty-handed.

Fortunately, my wife mercifully accepted the baton and took the reigns on this task and let me go play poker. One more run around and I think I was done for the day. I was very close to being irrecoverably tilted.

To recap, it took me 100+ minutes to get to a destination seven minutes from my house and I didn’t even accomplish the task I was set out to do.

Seats open in the 2/5 game and it’s tempting to sit down in that lineup, but I can’t bring myself to participate in that game’s existence when the 15/30 game isn’t running. I’m currently 4th up for 8/16 and there are only four names on the list for 15/30.

Slow Saturday.

4:25 PM: Welp. I caved. I just kept looking at the 2/5 NL lineup and wanting to sit down and then one of the floors came over and pushed me over the edge by saying whether I play or not isn’t going to make much of a difference and my objective should be to make money, not be a little bitch. 😂

He made a lot of sense.

Lineup: Part-Time, a nitty reg, a bad reg, that douchey guy that was ganging up on me with The Flea, and three players I’ve never seen.

I’m far from a NL expert, so no clue how this is going to go but I suspect I should be a favorite simply by playing tight and solid. I play exploitive poker though, so that’s where there’s potential for things to go poorly.

4:39 PM: Yeah. This is pretty much how no limit goes for me. I open to $15 with 87dd and c-bet $25 in a 3-way pot on K93. One player calls and the 9 pairs on the turn. He seems weak and I think he has a lot of gut shots and pairs less than the 9 in his range. I fire $50 and he calls again. I still think his range is the same on the river when an ace comes and this is a good card for me to fire a third bullet. I don’t need to size big here since I think he’s weak, so I push out $80 and he SNAP calls me with 43o.

I’ve been in this game for four hands and I’ve never seen this guy in my life.

I sat down with $500 in play and $500 on the side but after seeing that, I have it all in play now.

Uneventful hand here but notable because a different player just limped under the gun with Q7o.

4:49 PM: And the player that just picked off my $170 quadruple bluff with bottom pair, on a favorable board texture for me, just left… because that’s how much the Poker Gods are shitting on me this weekend.

That genius is replaced my John Kim, whom definitely knows how to play this game better than I do. 😴😴

4:57 PM: A hand I wasn’t involved in:

Button straddle to $10, three calls, someone makes it $100, the third caller calls. Board is al raggedy and I think it checks on flop and turn before there’s an $80 bet and call. 72ss (bottom pair) beats K6 high.

A hand I was involved in:

I 3-bet KK from SB to $35, bet $30 on 882 flop and lose to A9o.

Standard for me in live no limit hold’em.

Mister Magoo takes our open seat!

5:22 PM: open $15 with Q9dd and nit min-raises to $30, one other calls, and I call also. Flop is JJx with Jd and we all check. Turn is the Td, giving me an open-ended straight flush draw, and the big blind leads out $20. I’m super tempted to raise here and I suppose I can still have jacks in my range, but I decide to just call and the PFR makes it $80. The other player folds and maybe I have some fold equity here if I suddenly make a big raise, but I don’t know what the best play is so I just call and…. whiff.

He tables KK behind.

5:26 PM: 15/30 is on the verge of starting and the game looks worse than the one I’m playing so it’s quite a dilemma. I want to support the 15/30 and not the 2/5, but it’s obvious which game is better.

5:39 PM: Yikes. I made decision to move and then this happened:

Two limps, John Kim makes it $20, I call with AJo from the cutoff, and five of us see the flop.

AQx

They all check to me and I bet $60. Everyone folds and JK calls. We are not concerned.

AQxJ

He checks and I bet $125. He makes it $300, leaving around $250ish behind. Don’t really see how I can fold here but I’m also wondering if I’m really about to lose a $1300+ pot right before I move. I didn’t love the spot but I also knew I wasn’t ever folding, so I stopped thinking about what he could have and put my whole stack in. He calls and doesn’t seem to love it.

I say, “two pair.”

“Me too.”

“Ace Jack.”

“That’s good.”

I hold vs QJ and then I move to 15/30 and apologize to him for the brutal hit and run.

5:49 PM: No real notables in the 15/30 game: The Queen, one huge fish, and a couple Palace regs.

It’s not a great game change, but it’s my duty to make this game thrive and I am much, much, MUCH better at LHE than NL.

6:38 PM: A couple notes:

First, No limit pots are more interesting than limit pots and probably provide better content. I’ve been playing 15/30 for about 40 minutes with zero hands of note.

Second, my attention is currently divided between poker, the Mariners game, and the Chris Sale-Sean Manaea matchup in Oakland – but I will try to provide some hands here.

Lastly, the 2/5 game just broke. It was full with five on the list like 20 minutes ago. That’s an amazing collapse.

7:32 PM: QT < Q9 on Q65; JJ < 33; Paxton just gave up three runs.

Goddammit!

7:36 PM: Oh man. J.Cole’s song “Bracket” about taxes is really speaking to me right now.

8:27 PM: Okay. Well, I watched almost all of Sean Manaea’s no hitter on my phone which makes it really hard to blog at the same time.

Regular updates incoming again.

While I was watching, I called the worst player at the table down on 98349 with KJ and won and then I bluffed him with 76 on A282A.

We have added The Flea to the lineup and his douchey partner from the other day.

Time to focus up and will the Mariners to victory from my peripheral.

8:52 PM: I won a notable pot before this but I can’t remember what it was.

Anyways, I raise under the gun with KQhh and only the Flea defends. Flop is Q42 rainbow and he check-raises me, I call and then raise on the 9 turn and he 3-bets me. Sigh.

River pairs the 2 and he pauses for like 30 seconds and I finally say, “I’m calling if that will help you make your decision.” He checks, so I bet and he calls with Q9 and that’s good. I guess he did have something to think about, but it’s a 5-10 second think, not half a minute. Looks like I let the constant camera time distract me from taking a free showdown and instead made an ill-advised bet.

10:14 PM: Game is jammed up now and I’m running super pure. Like whole table is jealous pure. I’m hitting everything and it’s all happening way too fast to keep track of.

Some hands I remember:

3-bet AJhh and flop flush and get action from three different players. Open AA and flop top set and get paid off. T8ss on 97×6. 65dd on 977dAdTd. Open KT and get the QJ54A runout.

Needless to say, I am up heaps now.

10:38 PM: Fast and furious. As I was typing that last update these two hands happened:

Flea limps, I raise AT, new crazy (possibly drunk) player 3-bets, Bingo Man calls, and so do we. Flop is QTT with one diamonds. Everybody checks, which is something I was not expecting to happen. Turn is an ace and Bingo leads out, I raise, the new player calls $60 cold, Bingo 3-bets, and I cap. River is king of diamonds and now the new player raises me, Bingo calls, I 3-bet and only one of them calls. This monster pot goes my way.

One hand after The Flea calls my wife “bad luck” because I finally lost a pot just after she came to visit, Flea raises some limpers from the small blind and I defend with K6o.

Flop: KK6 two hearts

Flea bets and I flat to keep the limpers in. They all call. Turn is jack of hearts and now Flea checks, I bet, button calls, and Flea raises. Pretty easy 3-bet here and Flea caps it, with the button still in as well.

River is a queen and Flea still leads. Is it too passive to call here? We are now losing to KQ and KJ and he never plays AK this way. I ended up raising and getting raised again and losing to KJ so now I’m on a break counting combos.

There are three combos of JJ, one combo of 66, and three combos of KJ. He can possibly have flushes and AK up until he caps the turn. If he happened to be losing his mind with KQ on the turn then that’s another three combos I’m losing to on the river. 66 is pretty unlikely, so it’s 50/50 on my river decision and I think the presence of the third player calling one bet but possibly not two, means I should lean towards calling. Plus, the KQ factor.

Obviously insanely unlucky, probably because The Leak was sitting behind me (seriously, who comes by and just completely extinguishes a heater?) but also likely a bad river decision on my part as well.

12:05 AM: Flea opens cutoff, I 3-bet QQ on button and both blinds come along and Flea calls.

J75 with two hearts and there are fireworks. I put in the first raise but the big blind 3-bets and Flea caps, plus the small blind is still in.

Turn is a blank and Flea still bets. This is a spot where I used to raise 100% of the time but now I’ve learned to be more cautious. Sure, there are going to be times when I’m ahead and wind up losing to one of the blinds because I just called on the turn, but more often I’m behind here and having to put in four bets to get to showdown is brutal. So I just call and so do the two others.

River is a 7 and everybody checks to me. I should be good here now and I probably have a value bet, but I take the safe route and check back. They table KJ, 65hh, and AJ and my queens are good.

Another interesting spot, or maybe not interesting at all: straddle pot and I have QJss and five of us put in five bets pre.

Flop is A74 no spades. There’s a bet and three calls back to me and I’m getting 29 to 1 here, closing the action. I know I call if there’s a spade on board, but what about an 8 or a 9? Does that make it an auto-call or should I see the turn in this exact spot?

I don’t know the answer to that so I should probably investigate. Either way, I don’t know what’s grosser, calling or folding here.

2:01 AM: That’s a wrap. Today was basically polar opposite of yesterday. Almost all my pocket pairs held up, I was drawing well, and flopping good.

Final result: +2820 (in 15/30) and +$520 (in 2/5 NL) for +$3340 total.

And that’s how you tell a record bad session to go F itself.

We are meeting friends for lunch tomorrow in Renton and doesn’t seem like playing poker is really on the docket. We have another doctor appointment in Kirkland late afternoon on Monday so that’s going to delay my Monday session considerably but Radio Mike said he’s playing so I’ll try to get in his game by 6 PM if I can.

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