The Return! $15/$30 @ Palace (Live Blog)

March 8, 2019

So in my last post I was lamenting a terrible month of February and eager to play my first session of a new month. Well, I posted another loss of 55+ big bets. That gives me five straight losing sessions in the 15/30 game and three of them have been for more than 55 big bets. In this case, it was a -$1710 session exactly. Losses that big are the equivalent of losing $440 in 4/8 or $880 in 8/16. Big losses. Maybe not on the level of my worst losses, but I typically only have a handful (or two) of sessions this bad each year and right now they are just coming in rapid succession. It’s the kind of run that makes you question everything. Did I suddenly forget how to play limit Hold’em?

Naw. It’s just variance, but it is definitely being compounded by some less than stellar decision-making. My head has been clouded by constant losing and that sixth sense (subconscious instincts built up over hundreds of thousands of hands) that usually provides clarity in murky situations has been mostly absent these last few weeks. Mostly, I have not been having fun. It’s hard to go to the casino every day and not just lose, but lose violently.

So I decided to take a week off. Usually, I’m ready to get back in action after a couple days off – and I was this time as well – but I stuck to my plan and I haven’t played live poker since last Friday.

One of my top priorities this month was to prepare for the Muckleshoot Spring Classic and I did start doing that during this time off, spending a couple days playing poker tournaments online. So far, I’ve played 27 tournaments (on my quest to 100) and I’ve cashed 5 of them (18%) with three final tables that led to a 1st and a 2nd. Unfortunately, I’ve been cashing the smaller buy-ins and whiffing the bigger ones, so my ROI for the month is a modest 15%. All in all, I’d have to say I’ve ran pretty bad so far, losing almost all the important flips and late, big confrontations I’ve had.

On Wednesday, one of our dogs, Yogi, passed away. He was an old dog and I’m not sure how good his quality of life has been these last couple of years, so I was kind of happy for him that he was able to move on. He had breathing problems – typical of older Poms – and while he always wagged his tail and kept trooping along, I am glad to know he is truly at peace now. He traveled everywhere with us and got to see lots of awesome places and go on many adventures.

R.I.P. Yogi.

3:53 PM: 22 names on the list.

Starting Lineup: Master Splinter, Chief Wiggum, Ducky, Part-Time, Flea, Joker, and a couple other regs

Joker currently Coasting. I’m out already.

4:20 PM: Flea is the only limper and it folds to my big blind and I check with KTo.

Flop is KKJ with two spades and I start with a check call since I have the board clobbered and I expect Flea to barrel off more than any other player.

I check-call turn and check-raise when the board bricks out and he has something he can call with so I get to show my hand.

I win the pot and he starts chuckling. And then chuckles some more. And keeps chuckling.

Ducky turns to me and says, “I think he thinks that’s funny” and I whisper back, “so do I.”

5:35 PM: Been a pretty inactive first 90 minutes for me but I just had a big confrontation with Chief Wiggum.

He limps along on the button and I raise from the small blind with TT and both limpers call.

Flop is AT6 with two spades and I get raised by Wiggum on the button. We are not in Overs, but we will be after I call, so I opt to wait for the turn to raise. Could be dangerous, but I’m not sure I’ve ever seen Wiggum raise on the flop for a free card with a draw.

Turn is a blank and we each put out four bets in Overs and then he calls a river spade with 66.

But, the victory was somewhat short-lived because as I was typing this I raised with AK and got the KT7 all diamond flop with the ace of diamonds in my hand. Wiggum had J9 of diamonds and we put in four bets on the flop before I check-called down without improving.

6:50 PM: A preface to this next hand:

Joker opens and I 3-bet KQ on the button. I get check-raised on J87cc (with a club) in my hand and then I get check-raised again when I turn a king. Nice. I dare him to check-raise me again on the river (because I want a free showdown) but it’s an ace and he bets. I’m not beating much against this line but I pay it off anyway and he shows AA, taking a play right out of my own book by flatting my 3-bet pre in a spot he used to always cap. Good job, blog.

Which brings me to this hand:

Someone limps, Joker raises, I 3-bet with KK from the big and that gets us heads up.

Flop is J64 with two clubs and we end up going four bets. Unlike the previous hand against Chief Wiggum, Joker is plenty capable of raising the flop with a pair plus draw and checking back the turn when he misses. The value range I’m losing to is AA and JJ. Maybe 66, but I’m not sure he’s jacking up a limper from the hijack with that hand. He can have a number of flush draws, including ones that have a jack in them, and I don’t want him checking back any of those hands.

Even though Joker capped the flop, I still lead a ten on the turn for all the reasons listed above and I’m very happy to see him just call.

The river is a queen and I ended up checking but I think I should have bet. I can probably rule out JT when he flats the turn so I’m really just checking because QJ got there? He can’t have AK of clubs because I have the Kc in my hand. I suppose he could still have AA here, but I think I like a bet.

He checks back and my hand is good.

Apparently he turned a pair with his flush draw. 👀

9:25 PM: More fun with Joker. I open utg with AQo, Ducky 3-bets next to act, and Joker cold caps it from MP. We both call.

Flop is pretty good when you have AQo from the worst position and get raised twice: AAJ rainbow. It seems silly to bet here without the lead, but Joker is the kind of player that might check back a hand like KK after all that preflop action, so maybe I should be leading here. But I check and it checks around.

Turn is a 9 that opens up a diamond draw. I lead out and only Joker calls.

I’m ranging him in big pairs that checked back the flop so I’m kind of surprised when I get raised on a rather innocuous 5 of diamonds on the river. I look down at the ace of diamonds in my hand and a flush on the river makes even less sense. So after thinking about it for a while I say, “you must have KQ of diamonds exactly.” But I put the call out and that is the hand he shows me.


And this is why I can’t have winning sessions.

10:38 PM: Just called a raise in a multi-way pot with QJcc and flopped a flush and went two bets on flop and three Overs bets on the turn, plus a bet on the river… and won.

This is the kind of thing that basically never happened the last few weeks.

11:00 PM: Cobra is sitting next to me playing in a pot while holding a plate in front of him, eating Mongolian beef, and after the dealer brings the turn a chopstick comes flying off his plate, along with various bits of noodles, sauce and meat.

The table stops in stunned silence for a bit and Cobra breaks it by saying, “oh my God, is that an ace on the turn?” and everyone started dying.

It might have been a you had to be there moment, but I was laughing my ass off.

Final Score: +$630

I didn’t have many hands to blog about because I wasn’t involved a lot tonight. I don’t think I was ever stuck more than $100 and I was never up more than $800, so not a very volatile session.

It’s a pretty small win, but a much needed slump buster. I’ll take it.

One comment

  1. RIP Yogi. Breathe easy lil pupper.

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