Posts Tagged ‘no limit hold em’


Muck Fall Classic – $750 No Limit Hold’em Main Event (Stack Updates Only)

September 29, 2018

Vitals: 20k starting stacks, blinds at 25/50, and levels are 45 minutes today. We are fast approaching 200 entrants and registration is open for another 4.5 hours!

My starting table currently has seven seated players and two dead stacks. I’ve seen all these guys around but I only know one of them, a nitty, predictable guy from Kitsap County.

Yesterday, I talked a lot with Adam Coats (a non-blog reader) and he was telling me about this 30 Day Cold Shower Challenge he did and how liberating it was and I was like, “stop judging me, Adam! I’ll start it up again tomorrow.”

So today was Cold Shower Challenge Day 1.


For the third time.

I’m seeing it through this time, dammit.

Speaking of Adam, I prefer to refer to people anonymously via nicknames on the blog, but since he’s been in the public eye at the World Series of Poker every time I’ve talked about him, I haven’t really felt it was necessary. However, after having the name ChowMein suggested to me and discovering that it was an old online screen name of Adam’s, I asked for his blessing to call him that and got the okay.

Welcome to the club, buddy!

Alright, time to focus up. I’ll post updates on breaks and maybe if a really big pot happens.


Notables I’ve Seen: ChowMein, Solomon Grundy, Flipper, Green River Gary (no explanation needed), and Billy Dubs (my new twist on Bill W)

Punt Attempt: Under the gun opens to 600 at 75/150 and it folds to me on button with AQ. I just call and so does the big blind.

Flop is AQT with two diamonds (I have none) and the big blind leads out for 1200 and the PFR calls. The big has a little over 15k total and the PFR has about 7k. The board is pretty wet so I make a sizable raise to 5k and I’m not folding to a jam. Big blind tanks for quite some time and eventually stuffs it. PFR folds and I kind of hate it because when we get in 100+ bigs each on the flop I really shouldn’t be good here, but I call and…

He has AJo with a diamond.

Turn 8d

River 4d

So much pain.

I’m down to 9k now and I’m pretty damn sad about it because I was dominating this table and I should have over 45k now.

Sick. Sick sick sick SICK.

Re-entry is open for another 3 hours, but I also still have 60 bigs.

First Break: 8.7k

More Notables: Slimer, Sandman, Joker, Minh Cash

Second Break: 18.1k

I am playing above the rim right now and have been running pretty brutal. Basically all my chips have been accumulated through well-timed bluffs. I feel like I’m seeing situations really well and I’m executing on how I think I can exploit what’s going on.

Registration is closed after this break. I’m pretty happy to get back near starting stack without having to re-enter.

Update: 55.4k

I’m putting on a clinic. Meanwhile the guy that devastated me earlier… is out. He shoved his last 11 bigs over a 3.5x open from another small stack with… 65ss. What in the world?

Prize pool is posted. There were 341 total entrants. 174 remain. Total prize pool is $237,175, which means $25,575 was raked, or 10%. Not bad. 51 spots get paid, with a minimum payout of $1200. First place is $49,000.

Let’s get it.

Dinner Break: 47k

Play resumes in 70 minutes.

I watched Joker get it all in on the last hand before break with AA against JTss on 952ss but the 8 of spades on the river busted him.

143 players left. Average stack is 47.6k so I’m right there. Blinds will be 600/1200 when we come back so I have 39 bigs when we restart.

My goodness, I’ve already used the bathroom and had a full meal and sat bullshitting for 10 minutes and we still have 40 minutes of break left.

7:41 PM: I am absurdly card dead. I called a raise with JThh and someone jammed (so I folded). That is the extent of my involvement since dinner ended. Pretty silly.

Down to 36.6k.

7:52 PM: 88 < AK all in pre for ~12 bigs.

Down to 18.1k – jam or fold territory.

8:28 PM: Doubled A9 > 88. Back to 11bb.

Fourth Break: 33.3k

I think I was peaking around 55k before I opened to 2.5bb on button with A8dd and big blind defended. We both checked Q98 flop. I called 5bb on 3 turn and then we both checked 5 river. He had 94o.

Because you just have to defend with that one.

Coming back to 1200/2400 blinds.

72 players are left and 51 of us will cash. Average stack is 94k so I’m an underdog but so what.

Let’s go.

Update: Busted in 70th AT < AJ. I will not be playing the Shootout tomorrow as it looks like I’d have to win it outright to get in the Player of the Series spots.


Muck Fall Classic – $400 No Limit Hold’em (Stack Updates Only)

September 28, 2018

Vitals: 15k starting stack, sitting down at start of L2 with blinds at 50/100, and 186 players registered so far.

I recognize a couple players at my table from local cash games.

I’m playing in the banquet area for the first time. No shuffle machines but it’s pretty nice in here.

First Break: 16.9k

I’m happy about that considering I bluffed off a third of my stack and got called down by Q4dd on 6648T. I’m praying to make anything against that player.

12:53 PM: Doubled with AK vs Jc9c on QcJT-8c-J.

33.9k at 150/300 blinds.

Second Break: 34.7k

Registration is closing after this break.

Update: 300 entrants. $102k in the prize pool. $18k taken out for rake, or 15%. $20.4k up top for 1st. 45 spots pay. ~205 left.

I have 42.6k at 300/600 with 600 big blind ante. Average stack is ~22k.

Third Break: 42k

Weird last hand before the break. Player I think is competent makes it 1700 with blinds at 300/600 after an under the gun limper. That’s not strange but what is strange is that the raiser started the hand with less than 4000, so he’s making a small raise after a limper when he’s starting the hand with less than six big blinds.

I don’t get it. Even if I had a hand as strong as AA, I would expect the limper to call a lot.

Anyways, it folds to me and I look down at AJo. I wouldn’t even think about calling a 6bb jam with AJ and the under the gun player has shown some loose-passive tendencies so I’m not too worried about him having a big hand. So I go ahead and make it 4000 to put the raiser all in.

The limper folds and he calls it off with A9o.

I really don’t get it. The call here is fine but the initial raise is mind-boggling.

Fortunately for him the board runs out K88-K-9 and he got lucky on me twice in rapid succession and doubles up.

So… I have 42k now instead of 51k.

Coming back to blinds of 400/800 with 800 big blind ante.

Dinner Break: 88.4k

My bad. We’ve been on break for 40 minutes already. I just forgot to post something.

Cards back in the air in 35 minutes.

More Info: 79 left. Average stack is 57k. 45 spots get paid.

7:21 PM: Flopped top two with KQ in a raised multiway pot and then busted someone with JJ > 99.


58 left.

Fourth Break: 145k coming back to 2500/5000 with a 5000 big blind ante.

We are in the money. 45 are left and everyone is guaranteed at least $630.

Average stack is 100k.

Adam Coats and Chief Wiggum both still in also.

Update: We have three hours of play in between breaks this time for some reason, so I should probably mention that things have been going really poorly. I am down to about 80k with blinds now at 3k/6k.

There are 36 players left now.

9:14 PM: Doubled with 66 > AK.


Fifth Break: Peaking at 220k coming back to blinds of 6k/12k.

20 players remain.

Update: It’s been rough. I have 165k and we are combining to a 10-handed final table.

I appear to have the shortest stack. $2500 locked up.

Chief Wiggum here with me. He has about 280k.

9 left.

Update: Early position makes it 42k at 8k/16k and it folds to me in the big. I jam for 149k with AQ and… he starts tanking? Wtf. Didn’t expect that. He thinks for about two minutes and now I’m thinking I want a call, realizing I’m probably doubling up over 70% of the time. He eventually does call… with AJ.

Flop: JJ4

Turn: 4


9th for $3000.


Main Event tomorrow.


Live Blog From Oklahoma: $1/$3 No Limit @ Winstar!

September 20, 2018

Even though I’m pretty tired after driving a solid 5 hours or so from Houston to Waco to Dallas, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to a) drive one more hour and cross another new state off my “places I’ve been to” list and b) play some more poker!

I got immediate seating in a 1/3 no limit game and since it has a $300 maximum buy in, I sat with $300 on the table and an extra $500 in my pocket. I’m on the list for a 1/2/5 PLO mix (high/hi-lo split) game but there are ten names (three as call ins) and it hasn’t started yet, so…

Pretty cool start!

I raise one limper to $12 with AJ and the big blind and limper call.

Flop is T93 with two diamonds and I check behind.

Turn is the jack of diamonds and the big leads for $22. I call.

River is another diamond. It’s probably worth pointing out that I do not have a diamond. So when he checks to me, I’m firing this $50 bullet as a pure bluff. I put up with the tank stare down for about a minute before going to my phone to type and as soon as I do that, he folds. Interesting.

Next notable pot: someone opens to $15, very green (“what do I need to put in?”) dude calls, and I make it $61 from the small blind with AKo. The opener folds but the noob is trying to figure out what he needs to do to call and eventually just gives up and says, “let’s just put it all in there.” The dealer objects, a player starts talking and I say, “let’s do it.”

Unfortunately, the dealer allows us to do this and my AK loses to his TT and I owe this man $207.

10:02 PM: There’s a limper or two, I make it $15 with QQ just after I’ve been called for the PLO game, one player calls in position, and the noob from the previous hand reraises me to $30 from a blind and a limper calls. I make it $115 of a stack of $373 and only the noob calls.

The flop is 752 with two spades and he immediately leads out for $40. I don’t waste much time before jamming the rest of my $258. He starts tanking and eventually says, “you have no idea, man” and I respond, “you’re right, I have no clue.”

He eventually decides to call it off and tables the 43hh and the 6 on the turn leaves me drawing dead.

Solid -$475 in minutes! All to the same guy… how could I leave that game?

Then I walk over to the PLO table and there are two people sitting there with chips in front of them.

I bit the bullet and sat down. I bought another $700 in chips and put $500 on the table (max) and $525 in my pocket.

Monday: We said goodbye to New Orleans and the Mississippi River and made the 5+ hour trek to Houston.

And arrived at the tiny house we booked for our Houston stay:

I thought it was a novel idea and that it might be fun to try out, but yeah, I’ll never be doing that again. I like my space. How many times did I hit my head on the ceiling? Too many.

Tuesday: We started off our day by having our best meal of the trip at LA Crawfish. The Leak had some very good crawfish and I had some excellent chicken pho.

And then we headed downtown to get our first glimpse of Minute Maid Park, home of the World Champion Houston Astros.

My first glimpse:

Craig Biggio statue throwing to Jeff Bagwell statue:

This is what banners look like:

Home plate entrance:

The Leak sizing up with Carlos Correa:

First glimpse of the field:

And one of our coolest moments as Seattle fans – getting the autograph of a Mariners legend and future Hall of Famer:

And this is what a World Series ring looks like:

This dude was giving a girl in Mariners gear hell as they were airing it on the Jumbotron. I was like two spots down in all M’s gear and did not think I would escape unscathed, but he showed me mercy:

Fresh after getting Dee Gordon’s autograph:

Our actual seats:

A video my mom shot of Root Sports in Seattle airing some loyal Mariner fans in Houston:

Unfortunate timing to be looking at my phone the whole time, but it was between innings!

Sick poster:

Future MVP:

Some cool street art inside the stadium:

And my last looks at a very cool ballpark!

10:49 PM: Well, I’d much rather play PLO mix than no limit, but… the action is forcing me back. This game is kind of lame and, uh, that last table was amazing.

10:58 PM: Back in 1/3 but not the table I’m aiming for. I’m keeping a hawk eye on that table to make sure they don’t give the next open seat to anyone but me.

I lost $131 in my brief time in the PLO game. I made it $20 with JT98 and c-bet $35 on KJ7 and another $65 when the king paired on the turn. After he called that bet, I was done with it unimproved and I let him show down a naked AA hand. Uh, okay.

11:41 PM: Finally! A hand I can talk about.

Middle position opens to $15, button calls, I call QJhh from the small, and the big also calls.

Flop is Q63 with two hearts. I has monster. I’m looking to check-raise here a lot, but the PFR checks along. Fortunately, the button bets $30. He’s been pretty aggro so this bet doesn’t surprise me at all and I certainly don’t give him credit for much. I’m torn between calling and raising here so I actually go for a limit hold’em almost min-raise to $70. That will likely get me heads up and keep a LAG’s range wide.

Bingo. They fold and he calls.

Turn brings my flush in and I bet $100 with another $164 behind. Seems okay. He tanks forever and finally jams for like $160ish total. I call and my flush ends up being good.

Someone makes it $6 and there’s a call. I make it $25, button calls, and an older white lady in her 60s or early 70s repops me to $95 and she only has like $100 behind that. Folds back to me. I’m annoyed that this is happening because I really like my hand, but I’m looking at her and her stack size and my hand just shrivels up. She has me crushed. She just has to. I fold.

Surprisingly, the button calls. That’s surprising because the button has like $75 behind.

They see a flop of 532, all clubs. Sigh. And then they get it in.

Her AA holds up.

Another $6 raise and a call and I make it $25 again with TT. Only the original raiser calls.

Flop is 975 with two clubs and he check-calls $35.

Turn is an ace and we both check.

River is a 6 and he takes forever to figure out what size to bet and settles on $50. Now it’s my turn to tank. I’m not great at ranging hands, so as I’m sitting there thinking about how likely it is that he has an 8, I’m also taking note of his body language and dude is just staring daggers at me. I stop thinking about it and put the call out.

He taps the table and I win the pot.

12:17 AM: Back at my original NL table and I’m limping along on the button with the T9o and the big blind makes it $25 to go. Only the psycho from the earlier hands calls and I look at the big blind and say, “nope” and put $25 out there.

Flop is 872 with two spades and he leads out for $55. He only has like $200 total and I think he’s capable of trying to steal in this spot preflop – even though it’s a terrible spot because the psycho has position and he’s always calling – so I put him all in. He eventually calls.

Turn is ace of spades and river is jack of clubs so it seems pretty good until he turns over the 53 of spades.

12:27 AM: Flop a set. Lose to a flush. Almost felted again.

Raise button with KJ. Check back flop. Turn top pair against two pair and almost felt again.

This is BRUTAL.

12:28 AM: And now I’m sitting here with $35 and I’m all in with JJ preflop like an idiot. Psycho and dude that had the flush against my set both call…

K43 with two diamonds… I have Jd… psycho leads $71… other dude calls… this is probably not good.

9 of clubs… psycho $30… call again…

10 of spades… $40 and a call… and….





12:39 AM: Topped off to $300 again. I bought $1500 in chips tonight. I have less than $600 left.

12:45 AM: I have trips. Someone makes a flush. There goes another $150.

How is this real? Every hand they get there?

12:48 AM: Psycho opens $25, there’s a caller and I’m all in for $140 with KT of spades. He’s already called with A8 of hearts and turned his hand face up. Other dude is in the tank. And calls. Sigh.

He shows JJ. Super tank. Against psycho loose cannon and dude that has felted four times in the last half hour.

Woah. Flopped a king for the triple!

Punt fail. I was just trying to flip with the idiot but that was the nut result.

I want to update my Wednesday and Thursday activities but the hands have been fast and furious.

My boy is about to felt though. He had like $1500 at one point. Hopefully he has some deep pockets, otherwise my interest level is going to decrease dramatically.

He doubles with Q5!

1:07 AM: With blinds of 1/3, I open to $25 with AKo because I think it is probably advisable with this goof at the table. Let’s try to get as much money in pre as possible.

They all fold.

Wednesday: Still in Houston, we start off with breakfast at a place called The Breakfast Klub, the highest rated breakfast place in Houston according to TripAdvisor. It was great! The Leak got catfish and grits and I had a Belgium Waffle.

After breakfast, we headed to Nassau Bay to check out the Houston Space Center and the Johnson Space Center at NASA.

We got there about 2:30 and trams stop running at 3 so that was our top priority.

Here’s Historic Mission Control, the actual room where they monitored most (maybe the said all) of the Apollo missions:

They are remodeling it and sending the consoles out to be worked on so they start functioning again and NASA can include an operational version in their future tours:

The VIP viewing room:

Astronaut training center:

Rover they plan to use on Mars:

Pictures can’t do this rocket justice:

Dried ready-to-eat… ice cream sandwich? Wait, how did I not buy one of these?

This is a space toilet:

After NASA, we headed to Kemah Boardwalk and it was a bit disappointing. It felt more like an abandoned amusement park than lively social spot. They couldn’t even justify paying an employee to man every ride and basically all the snack stands were shut down.

But we did ride the Boardwalk Bullet, a wooden rollercoaster:

The Leak’s review: “that was the worst rollercoaster I’ve ever ridden.”

That was the only ride we did, but we did search for a good seafood place and GPS basically told us to walk two feet because we were sitting right in front of the restaurant we decided on without realizing how close we were.

Dinner at Landry’s:

This next picture is notable because…

…as we were eating, a dude and his lady were standing here and dude had a drone that he started flying and it hit the rail…

…and just fell right into the water.

The Leak audibly gasped when she saw it happen. I couldn’t stop laughing. What a bad beat.

The guy was on his phone while we ate and I wondered what his game plan was. Is he contacting the Coast Guard? Trying to get a warranty replacement?

The current was not soft so I’m guessing they never saw that thing again. I resisted the urge to conduct an interview after dinner.

1:39 AM: Open to $20 under the gun with TT and get two calls.

Flop is T64 rainbow. I bet $15 and a self-proclaimed nit (same guy that deep tank-called with JJ) makes it $55. Other dude folds. I’m going over all the possibilities in my head. I think it’s pretty standard to call here, but if he’s not real strong, how often does he check behind on the turn? Like with his Tx hands or JJ even? Not sure. It seems like he should be weighted to strong hands so I end up making it $125 and… he folds. Sigh.

I suck. Just like the Seahawks.

1:43 PM: Oh my. Psycho felted and just pulled out a huge wad of $100 bills and reloads another $300.

Uhm, go get a coffee, honey.

2:04 AM: Sigh. This night has been more vulgar than a viewing of Pulp Fiction with no consequences for anyone, but my dude just called the waitress that cut him off a “B-word” and now he is getting kicked out.

That probably spells the end of my night here.

2:37 AM: Cashing out now but I’ll report on one more hand:

Button open-limps, I make it $15 with KQo and he calls.

Flop is QQ5 rainbow. I lead $10 and he grabs a handful of chips and puts them in the pot. It ends up being $85 total. This is a bit different than the set of tens spot because this guy has way more garbage in his range and this board is absurdly dry. Calling is the only option.

Unfortunately he checks back the turn.

I try to induce on the river by sizing super small at $30 and he does not oblige.

Final Score: -$617 all sessions

I just asked a guy in all Texas Rangers gear how likely the game is to be rained out tomorrow and he said “100 percent.”

Ugh. Mariners vs Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington tomorrow is the only reason we are in Dallas right now.

I’ve never had tickets to a baseball game that got rained out. No clue how that works. I suppose if tomorrow got rained out they could schedule a doubleheader for Saturday and we could go watch the first game, or at least part of it, before flying back to Seattle later that night.


$1/$3 No Limit Hold’em @ Harrah’s in New Orleans

September 14, 2018

Checking out Harrah’s in New Orleans and immediately slip into a 1/3 no limit hold’em cash game.

I have some other things to report but before I publish I’ve already played a significant pot.

Hijack opens to $10 and I have KTdd in the cutoff. I think raising could be okay here but he’s pretty shallow. I have some decent stacks behind so isolating someone with < $100 holding king high seems bad and getting it in here for 30+ bigs seems real bad. I flat and so do the button and both blinds.

Flop is QJ5 all diamonds. It checks to me and I bet $30 into $50. Everyone folds except the PFR and he tanks before jamming for $86. I snap.

The turn is the 4d and I lose to AdJx.

Nice start!

2:06 PM: Eminem finally responded to MGK. Check out his response “KILLSHOT” here:

Eminem – KILLSHOT (MGK Response)

2:15 PM: We landed in New Orleans around 5:30 PM local time.

Our first meal was at The Gumbo Shop somewhere in the French Quarter:

We got to our AirBnB around 8 PM and stayed in for the rest of the night, but we are staying so close to the Mississippi River that I had to go check it out:

But as I was standing in the grass in the pitch black I started thinking about how I had just read that the Mississippi is inhabited by alligators, copperhead snakes and a slew of rattlesnakes and I started to feel a bit uneasy.

Everything was much more visible this morning:

Breakfast this AM at the famous Cafe du Monde:

River views from the other side:

I thought we would be exploring the city today but it is 90 degrees and extremely humid. It feels like we are walking around in a steam room. So now we are in an air conditioned casino.

Here’s the poker room:

2:59 PM: Not sure how long I’ll be playing in this game. I paid for nine hours of parking but The Leak isn’t even playing poker. She’s roaming around the casino.

Notable hand:

New younger woman makes it $20 after one limper and a white man in his early 40s calls. I have AKo in the small and decide I want to 3-bet and possibly play for stacks. I make it $65 to go. She folds but he calls and has less than $200 behind. 🤦🏻‍♂️. Unless it’s a trap it’s already wacky.

Flop is J43 with two diamonds and one heart. I do have one diamond in my hand and I go ahead and lead for $75, imagining I’m not folding ever. If he wants to play for stacks here we are going to see all five board cards. Fortunately he just folds and I win this decent pot without a fight.

3:30 PM: There are multiple limpers and someone makes it $15. I call with 75cc from the big, expecting it to go multiway to the flop, but the first limper makes it $53 to go. The other limpers clear out, but the initial raiser calls and… I call? We all have at least $400 behind. Not sure if this is a good spot to speculate but I’m in there.

Flop is 655 with two hearts. I check and UTG bets $125. Other guy folds. No need to be coy here – he’s never folding. I jam and he stacks off immediately. The turn pairs the 6 and I send him out into the sultry Louisiana air.

4:05 PM: The Saints line up in punt formation and the visiting Dark Knights await the kick by raising a cutoff straddle of $6 to $16 with the AThh. It folds to the Saints in the hijack and they boot the rest of their $71 stack downfield. The straddler folds and I’m waiting for the ball, licking my lips to run this shit back for a touchdown.

JJ8. I’m waiting patiently, no defenders in sight.

JJ8-9. I’m reaching for the ball…

JJ8-9-T. “I have a straight.” He turns over the Q9.

Oh my God! The ball is loose. The punters recover!


4:52 PM: Oh boy. One limper, I make it $15 from cut with KQdd, button calls and small blind makes it $55. The limper calls and this is an ultra weird spot, as both the 3-bettor and the limper both have less than $200 behind. Obviously a jam isn’t going to get through here but my hand feels too good to fold. I guess the plan is to call and get it in on favorable flops? Shrug. Button folds.

Flop is KT6 with two hearts and one diamond. The blind jams for like $180 or whatever he has left. Other dude folds and I snap call.

He has AJ. I don’t win.

Very next hand, I raise a series of limpers to $25 with the J6dd (steaming?) and get three callers.

Flop is Q98, all diamonds. Well, hello there! The big blind immediately reaches for chips and looks like he wants to put the rest of his small stack in, but ends up checking instead. I bet $80 into $100 hoping to play a big pot and deny equity to the bigger one card flush draws. The big blind ends up jamming for $5 more and everyone else is a folder.

He has KTdd. I don’t win.

I raise one limper to $13 with the KTss and multiple players call. The limper ends up jamming for $134 and he’s the same dude that jammed on me with the Q9 so I’m not folding. No one else looks strong so I just jam to make sure I isolate and the others clear out.

He announces, “pocket queens” and I nod, letting him know that’s good.

The flop comes out ace high and everyone else is already like, “not anymore” but they are wrong.

The turn and river are both kings though and now they are right.

He thinks I have AK and when I table my hand he’s like, “king ten?!?!” I decide not to bring up his Q9 jam earlier and roll with my current maniacal image.

I’m not done yet. On my big blind a competent and experienced player makes it $20 to go and gets way too many callers. I feel completely justified defending with the K4 of spades.

Flop is KJX with two hearts and one spade and UTG checks and so do a few people downstream. That’s when the player after UTG says, “I didn’t do anything” and winds up betting $75. Everyone folds to me and I’m definitely not worried about UTG here. Considering all the variables – UTG check in 7-way pot and this dude betting weakish into a big field with people checking behind him out of turn – I am not folding. I call $75.

The turn is the ten of spades. I have top pair and a flush draw now. I check and he bets $100 into what is now a $300 pot on a very wet board. He only has a few hundred behind and I’m not convinced he is strong. I jam. He starts tanking and I already love it. I also discovered a way to handle the all in stare down/tanking situation: just start updating my blog. You go ahead and think about this and try to get a read. I’m going to be productive.

He folds.

I just cashed out of the NL game +$517 and I am now sitting in a 15/30 limit Omaha game.

High only.

I have very little experience at limit Omaha High, but I have tons of experience at limit poker and I think I am adept at PLO, so I should be very comfortable in this game.

5:36 PM: I haven’t been here very long but this game is super loose. It is 10-handed and I’m the only player that folded in the current hand.


6:10 PM: Approaching the one hour mark in Omaha and I have won zero pots. I think I’ve played three hands and I’m playing too loose. Seriously. I think you really have to nit it up in this game – especially with everyone playing so loose – and make sure all four of your cards are working together to make nut type hands. I’m sitting here thinking about a hand like 8876 double suited and how rarely your flushes will be good against a field and how often your sets and straights get outdrawn.

The Leak is in the game now too. Hopefully she can make the proper adjustments as well. We are waiting for the next dealer to push so we can take a 75-minute dinner break.

6:22 PM: Middle position straddles (which you can do from anywhere), cutoff calls, button 3-bets, I 4-bet AAK6 doubled suited, there are two more callers, straddle calls, and the button makes it 5-bets. So six of us end up with $75 in the middle.

Flop is J84 rainbow with one of each of my suits. Betting seems bad. Check-raising the button has appeal but it is probably overly optimistic. I likely just end up bloating the pot even more with a marginal hand and rarely limit the field. It checks around.

Turn is the queen of clubs. We have two nut draws! Leading out here probably isn’t great. I’m looking to show down a winner and that’s it. I check-call the hijack and four of us see the river.

5 of clubs! The nuts! I bet and get two callers for my first Omaha High pot in the state of Louisiana.

6:53 PM: Limpers. I raise AQT3 double suited. Lots of callers.

Flop is KT5 with two spades and a club. I have a pair, a gutter, nut flush draw, and a backdoor club draw. I’m happy to put lots of bets in here but they only oblige me with one.

Still multiway to a red 9 on the turn. That’s not good. I’m not going to barrel this card but someone leads into me anyway. Five of us to the river.

8 of spades! The nuts again! The turn bettor leads again and I’m torn. I have two players behind me and they might call one bet. Raising will probably only net me one more big bet. I think I should probably call but I end up raising and everyone folds, even the river bettor! Whoops.

7:21 PM: Dinner break.

7:35 PM: Not sure how great a choice jambalaya was for a diabetic. I’ll be aggressively bolusing to keep my BG under 200. We’ve been to three places so far and I have to say I haven’t been floored yet.

8:00 PM: Just heard the dealer say, “put a lid on it” to announce the betting has been capped. First time I’ve ever heard that. Dealers that read my blog, feel free to use.

8:46 PM: Under the gun raises and there is lots of cold-calling, including me on the button with A3ccKQ.

Seven of us see the KT3 with one club flop. The PFR bets and there are some calls and I’m hoping a raise on the button will let me take control of the pot, but the PFR 3-bets and there are still at least five to the turn.

5 of clubs and we all call again.

The river is an offsuit 2 and now a player that has been calling all along bets after the PFR clearly waves the white flag. I’m perplexed, so I call and everyone else folds.

He announces, “I can’t win” so I table my K3 and this dickbag shows a set of tens and then says, “I guess I can win.”

Wow. One of my biggest pet peeves in poker. Losing huge pots when someone makes their hand on the river is part of the game. Losing a big pot after showdown because someone tells you that you won and then… turns over a better hand makes me Hulk angry. It’s not like he was even purposefully slow-rolling me; he’s just a dumb ass that doesn’t know what’s going on.

I thought you had a set of kings.”

After I just call flop and just call turn on KT35.


9:38 PM: Now I’m just flustered. I have AAK5 double suited and get it capped like six or seven ways.

Flop is pretty good: 432 rainbow with one of each of my suit. The slow roller from the last hand donks, I raise and two players cold call. The slow roller also just flats.

The turn is the 9 of clubs, putting two clubs out (not my suits). It checks to me and I let this dweeb check-raise me. I should just fold here. This player simply doesn’t have the balls to raise me with less than 65 here.

Not only do I call the turn but I call the river when the board pairs the 2. He shows me the 65 and I slow fold while thinking about how I wish I had a full house and still hadn’t shown my cards yet.



10:08 PM: Cold call with A2hhQJ.

Flop KT9 rainbow. All the bets. Five players.

6 of hearts, still rainbow. All the bets. One guy put in two bets but we end up heads up.

River 8. He also has AQJx.

Well shit.

10:33 PM: Raise some limpers with the QT98 double suited. Not sure if that’s good or not, but hand seems pretty solid against ranges that are rarely folding pre.

Flop is QJT rainbow and only one of my flush cards. I think it’s probably marginal to bet here, but I do have a straight, two pair and a backdoor flush draw. I can stand a raise here but I just get some cools.

That’s encouraging enough that I fire another barrel on a turn card that bricks but gives me the flush draw. This time the player on my left does raise, a splashy bad player calls cold and I call also.

River pairs the ten and I just donk out. He calls me and shows the AK but my full house is good.

12:39 AM: Very card dead the last several hours. We are calling it a night.

Final Score: +$723

Total Score: +$1240


South Sound Championship $340 No Limit Hold’em Main Event @ Little Creek Casino (Live Blog)

September 8, 2018

I woke up earlier than I was expecting today, so I shouldn’t be too late for the start of this tournament. Not too much to say right now. Buy in is $340 with starting stacks of 20,000. It’s a slow, decently structured tournament. I think the levels are at least 40 minutes long.

I have some decent history in this one, as I’ve mentioned before. I took 4th place in the South Sound Championship Main Event in spring 2014 for $4000 and this spring I got the second most money ($3420) in a 5-way chop. I’m hoping to avoid the big mistakes, run well, and make another deep run!

I should be in action somewhere around 11:15 AM.

11:24 AM: Sitting down now. It does look like rounds are 45 minutes. Re-entry is for three levels and I will fire all the necessary bullets.

Taking a look around the room I see: Joker, Solomon Grundy, Tormund, Bill W, Flexxx, and woah, a surprise appearance from my buddy and occasional travel partner Daniel. Daniel, Tormund and Flexxx are all at the same table. Joker said he wished he had a highlight cam for all the Tormund and Flexxx battles. Me too. That would be something.

I see a decent amount of other regulars I know also.

Current field size is 58. That’s insanely small. The spring Main Event had 92 players. I imagine more people will be trickling in, but at this point, I’d be surprised to see it top 75 entrants.

My table has Solomon Grundy, a Muck regular with an anger problem, and some dude going with the full Paul Volpe sunglasses, hoodie and Beats headphones look.

11:55 AM: First notable pot I open 65dd to 150 and get three callers.

I c-bet 250 on 8d33 flop and two players call, in position.

Turn is the 7d – a great card to continue firing at. I bet 750 this time and only one player calls.

River is a 3. I think this is a bad river to bet at. Granted, I’ve been repping an overpair, but after calling twice on this board texture I think he almost always has a full house and I don’t think he’s looking to fold very often. Maybe if I bomb it, but I’m not trying to torch off 33% of my stack just yet.

I check, he bets some amount and I fold.

12:02 PM: Sigh. Or maybe I am.

Open AsT to 250 and four of us to J65 all spade flop. Small blind donks 250 and I’m only caller.

Turn is a 4 and I raise his 600 to 2600. He calls.

Can I make a hand so I don’t have to bluff this off? No. No I cannot. However, the river is a 7, giving me even more incentive to think I might have some fold equity here. I bet 5k and he calls with 66.

Why call 600 and fold river when I can bluff off an extra 8k instead.

Solid. Very solid. I have less than half the starting stack already.

Jesus, I’m bad sometimes.

I should just jam the river and put max pressure on him. I know he can’t have the nuts. Not saying a jam would work here but I do think it’s a substantially play than betting 5k after he already called 2600 on the turn.

Plus, when he inevitably calls with his set even though a flush is out there and any 3 or 8 beats him, I can sit back down with 20k in chips!

12:21 PM: Two limpers and I make it 500 on button with TT. Both limpers call.

Flop is T86 rainbow and I bet 1500 (pot) when they both check to me. I’m looking to get my stack in here and there are lots of bad turns for me. I get called by the first limper.

Turn is a jack and opens up a club flush draw. I’m trying to determine a good bet size and I want it to be hefty. Problem is, pot has 4500ish in it and I only have 7500 or so in my stack. Any decent sized bet is going to be for around half my stack so I just go ahead and jam it in there and hope that his hand strength and my shitty image can combine forces to get me a call here. He folds though.

Back to 12k.

12:27 AM: Trying to find my place of Zen, I open-muck ATo UTG+1 and then AJo UTG the next hand.


Assorted chips counts at first break:

TDK 12k

Joker 25k

Daniel 40k

Bill W 45k

Tormund 21k

Flexxx 35k

Solomon Grundy 18k

12:52 PM: And… I’m down to 33 bigs after whiffing a pair plus straight draw against what I felt was a top pair hand in a large-ish pot.

Not going to sit on this stack size. I will be gambling it up with only 34 minutes of re-entry left.

1:00 PM: I make it 700 after one limper with As9x and get two calls. Flop is QT9 with one spade. We all check.

Turn is the 4h and I call 1500 from the player to my right.

River is the jack of spades and she checks to me. I have about a pot-sized bet left. This is a super easy jam spot, especially with the re-entry dynamics. Once again, I have the nut flush blocker plus any king makes a straight and AK specifically is right in my range. I jam about 4600 and she tanks forever and finally calls with T8cc.


Second bullet. I’m back to 20k!

Alright, let’s calm this shit right down. I got the meditation playlist going now.

1:14 PM: I think the Seattle Mariners suffered the unofficial knockout blow to their 2018 season last night. The M’s had their ace James Paxton throwing and couldn’t beat the New York Yankees in a pretty must win game. Meanwhile, the Oakland Athletics cruised to an easy victory over the Texas Rangers and increased their lead in the AL Wild Card race to 6.5 games with 21 games to go. At this point, the only remaining – and extremely small – slice of hope is the fact that we haven’t been mathematically eliminated yet.

It’s going to take a three game sweep of the A’s from the 24th through the 26th to even make it interesting – and that’s assuming it’s not officially over before then.

Amazingly, I have tickets purchased to three upcoming games already. Tomorrow vs the Yankees and games in Houston and Arlington vs the Astros and Rangers next week. I was hoping all these games would have significant meaning, but the season is basically over now. Still, I can’t wait to see the two Texas stadiums. It will still be a blast!

1:31 PM: Re-entry is closed. Joker is also on his second bullet and sitting at my table now. We decided to spice it up a little bit with a Last Longer bet.

1:41 PM: I c-bet a 3-bet pot with AA and didn’t get any additional action.

Just opened AJo to 650 and got multiple callers. I fired 1000 into over 2500 on the AJ6 flop and one player calls.

Turn pairs the 6 and this dude has been really active and I think he’s capable of trying to bet me off hands, so I decide to check and induce. I call 2600.

River is a total blank and I stay consistent with my line. He bets 4700 and it’s hard to imagine what hands he would be willing to call a check-raise with that I am beating so I call and let him showdown his AK before winning this pot.

I’m up over 28k and Joker just got smoked as I was typing this, so I’m a heavy favorite in our Last Longer now.

1:49 PM: Looks like final tally on entrants is 80, creating a prize pool of $26.8k and a first place worth $9.1k. 8 players are in line to make at least $939 – unless they bought in twice like some of us suckers.

Assorted chip counts with 20 minutes left in L4:

Dark Knight 29k

Joker 2k

Grundy 12.5k

Bill W 50k

Daniel O 30k

Tormund 38k

Flexxx 24k

1:56 PM: Joker is busted and I’m not going to lose $680. Bright sides.

2:03 PM: Little Creek Casino: where you can drop the loudest “F Bomb” ever and not even get a warning (that I saw).

2:08 PM: Just made a slightly bad call with A9o when UTG+2 jammed 8.5 bigs and showed up with AQ. I thought it might be close so I checked and ATo is the cutoff. I got a decent sweat with a J758 board on the turn, but I made a pair of aces on the river instead and doubled him up.

2:38 PM: I have to give Joker some credit. Last night I was saying I didn’t think he would finish in the top 80 of the tournament and he scrapped and clawed today and proved me wrong.

Kudos, Joker. I’m always underestimating you. 🍻

2:50 PM: Just called a 9 big jam with ATo on the button… and I guess I should have isolated because the big blind decided to come along with 74o and that hand obviously won the whole pot.

Very next hand I have AK vs A6cc on KJ5ccc flop and managed to get to showdown in a 3-way pot for a single 2100 bet on the flop.

Well done, buddy.

Down to 17.5k.

3:11 PM: 14.8k heading to 300/600/50. 24 bigs! We are getting dangerously close to a stack size where I might actually stop sucking.

Assorted Counts:

Dark Knight 10.5k

Grundy busted

Bill W 40k

Flexxx 26k

Tormund 14k

Daniel O 49k

3:54 PM: So frustrated. I’ve won three pots in almost five hours. It’s super hard to do well in poker tournaments if you never win a hand. The guy on my left is absolutely murdering me. He’s beat me in no less than six pots. Every time I open he has a hand and I’m yet to beat him in a hand. It’s so frequent and predictable at this point it makes me think he’s picking on me but the showdowns I’ve seen have been AK, AK suited, and AA. I think he’s just running good and my timing is amazingly atrocious.

I am down to about 7k which means I’m in pure push/fold mode when we come back from break. I imagine blinds will be 400/800 so I will have less than 10 bigs.

4:07 PM: Quick double! Jam AJo under the gun first hand back and get it through.

Next hand small blind jams folded to him for like 4k and I snap with 22 and flop a set vs his A9o.

4:28 PM: Woah. Some good things are happening. Flopped trip 3s with J3hh from the big blind in a multiway limped pot; jammed over four limpers with 99 on the button and got it through; and raised one limper with ATcc only to have a short stack jam on me with QJo and I busted him.

Back up to 27k.

Assorted counts 5 minutes before dinner:

TDK 27k

Tormund BUSTED

Flexxx 20k

Daniel O 65k

Bill W 38k

5:10 PM: Last hand before break I opened to 2000 with AJo and got two callers.

Flop was JT3 with two spades and I c-bet 4000 and the button made it 10k to go. I’ve already seen this guy get massively out of line in the short time he’s been at my table so I’m not considering any folds here. I jam and he goes in the tank and now I’m hoping he calls. He does. And it’s not good. He has AJ also but has a spade in his hand for a freeroll, but doesn’t bink it.

29k on dinner break coming back to 500/1000/100.

5:36 PM: Correction: blinds are 600/1200/100. Sheesh!

37 players left and average stack is 43k.

6:06 PM: Dwindled all the way down to 13.5k after a couple opens and c-bets failed. Jammed with AQ and doubled through 55 to get back near 30k.

6:42 PM: Forgot my charger at home so my phone is plugged into the wall. Peaking at 34k after getting a reshove through with KQdd.

7:05 PM: Lost a sizable pot with AJ and then a medium-sized pot when I limp behind on button with J4ss after a player I’m targeting limps in from hijack. I’ve tried isolating him before with zero success. Every time I’ve done it he’s donked into me on the flop and I’m sitting there with nothing. So I’m just looking to steal in position if it checks to me or maybe win a big pot if I connect hard. Honestly, it’s not a very good play.

Well, he check-calls 2000 on T42hh flop and then donks 8k when a king hits the turn. I’m boiling inside. This dude is just walking on water. Does he have a heart draw that made a pair? I doubt it. I think he’s just a total spewer and I’m trying to restrain myself from jamming on him in frustration but he’s had it every time I’ve seen so far. I reluctantly fold and he shows me the KdJc as a courtesy and I want to thank him by flipping him the bird.

God, why can’t he just hit a jack instead so I can double up.

So gross. So stupid.

8 bigs.


7:16 PM: First hand back from break I call off my last 8 bigs with KQhh and lose to AJ.

Flexxx has heaps with 24 left. Daniel O is healthy. Bill W is still in.

But I’m out. And I’m outta here. I’m sure Daniel will keep me posted if he goes deep and I’ll make some updates here.


Little Creek South Sound Championship $150 No Limit Hold’em Bounty Tournament (Live Blog)

September 5, 2018

Today I’m firing my first event in Little Creek’s South Sound Championship series – the $150 No Limit Hold’em bounty tournament. I can’t even remember the last time I played a bounty event, but I do have a better idea of how to approach them after watching Parker Talbot and Lex Velhuis play a bunch of them on their streams over the past year.

Little Creek tournaments probably have the softest fields you can find where people are willing to pay $100+ for a poker tournament. I always have to remind myself to really dumb it down when I play here. I expect to take a lot of ABC lines and value bet bigger with my strong hands.

Looks like starting stack will be 10k. I don’t know much else about the structure. Shoot, I don’t even know how much each bounty is worth.

I also don’t know if there are rebuys or re-entry. If I don’t make a deep run in this event, I will continue the blog later for a PLO session at Palace.

11:38 PM: Not sure how wise it was to drive 40 minutes to play this event. There are currently 37 entrants and we are now in level 2. That’s pretty puny. I was expecting a small field, but I was thinking more along the lines of 60-70 players. This is going to top out at 45ish. None of the typical mid-stakes rounders are here – not even the mighty Tormund and this is his home ballpark. I know one player personally and I only recognize a couple others. Pretty wacky to play in a semi-local tournament and not know 90% of the field.

Starting stacks are 10k with blinds starting at 25/50 and 30 minute levels.

There is re-entry for three levels, so with bounties in play I’m planning to play hyper-aggressive as long as I can re-enter.

First pot I play I raise one limper to 200 with 86 of clubs and the blinds at 25/50. Both blinds also call.

The flop is AQ2 with two clubs and the big blind leads out 300. The limper folds here and this seems like a spot I’d rather call to start than raise, for all the reasons I mentioned earlier. I call and so does the small blind.

The turn is a blank and the big blind bets 100 into a 1700 pot. Now I feel compelled to raise. That is just way too much weakness not to attack it. I make it 750 and they both fold.

11:57 PM: Button opens to 300 at 50/100 and I have AJo in the small. This is normally an easy 3-bet spot but looking at the button and stereotyping (older white guy), I assume he will only continue if he has really strong hands. But if I just call, he gets to continue with his entire opening range. I call and the big blind folds.

JT7 rainbow is the flop and I check-call 500. I think it’s perfectly justifiable to check-raise this flop. I’m at the top of my range now and my hand is certainly more vulnerable than if I flopped an ace. But I think the same concepts apply. If I check-raise and get 3-bet here I will have to fold. I decide to call and keep his range wide.

The turn is a 5 and I check-call 800. I actually like this development. His sizing isn’t indicative of someone that is trying to protect a hand they are fearful might get outdrawn. I would say that points to me having the best hand the majority of the time. I expect this player pool to typically bet way too big when they think they have the best hand.

The river is ugly: queen of diamonds. Not only is it an overcard, but it completes AK and a backdoor diamond flush. I check and he bets 1200. Obviously the run out is terrible but the bet size is highly favorable, so I call and he shows 99.

Hmm… I said I was going to play hyper-LAG but I guess this hand isn’t very indicative of that.

12:34 PM: Open AJhh under the gun to 450 and super active player on button jams for 2950. Easy call… but then the small blind, a middle aged lady, calls. She has around 5-6k back, so I decide to call as well.

Flop is ace high and we both check. The turn is a queen and I decide to put a little value/protection of 1000 out there and she snap-jams. I call. I don’t love it. I wouldn’t expect her to be punting here but… she is. She has A6o. Other dude is drawing dead. River bricks and I scoop two $25 bounties.

Very next hand, it’s the last hand of the level and a player in middle position jams for 30 bigs. It folds to me in the big blind and I have ATo.

It’s a massive shove but there are lots of reasons to call:

  • It’s the last hand before re-entry closes
  • My hand does fine against a wider range
  • I can call and lose and still have almost double the starting stack
  • There’s a $25 bounty on the line
  • I think that’s enough reason to call but after tanking for a minute or two, I ultimately decided to fold thinking I’d rather maintain my commanding chip position at the table than gamble for 30 bigs and $25.
  • The all in showed me KJ.
  • I have about 23k (76 bigs) now after calling a 10bb jam first hand back with A3dd and losing to QQ.
  • 1:08 PM: Brutal level. Super aggro dude opens to 800 with like 7000 behind,button calls and I have AJo in the small blind. I make it 2950, planning to get it in with the LAG. He folds and then the button jams for 17k. Wth. I fold.
  • Then that same guy that jammed the 17k opens for 900 and I flat with AJdd and so does another player. The small blind then squeezes for like 60% of his stack to 6100 and we all fold.
  • First hand of 200/400/25, that same guy limps, I make it 1250 with JJ and the limper calls.
  • Flop is K73 with two spades and he donks right out for 4500, which is well over a pot-sized pot. I think the exploitive play is probably to fold here even though I would almost always call a bet on this flop. But the sizing should give me an easy exit. I call though. 🤦🏻‍♂️
  • Then I fold when he jams the turn. Just stupid. Burning chips!
  • I’m getting abused. I am down to 7600. What a collapse.
  • I have legitimately gone from dominating my table to feeling like they are actually picking on me.
  • 1:25 PM: One limper and I call with K3dd from the SB. Big blind checks.
  • Flop is AQ2 with two diamonds, including the ace. I have the nut flush draw. I decide to check and see what happens. Big blind checks and the limper bets 1300. Seems like a perfect spot to jam. I expect them to be opening a lot of the aces they play, so I think I have decent fold equity here. Do I think he never open-limps an ace? No, of course not. These people are passive and soft. He can have an ace, but he can also have a queen or a pocket pair or nothing. I jam for like 7k and he tanks for about a minute before calling with AT, which is a super easy call here, giving even more credence to my shoving line. He turns two pair which gives me some extra outs, but he fades the diamonds and the jack and I’m taking my merry ass on home now.
  • There ended up being a total of 48 entrants for this one. I wasn’t planning to play tomorrow’s event but now I’m probably going to skip Friday as well and just play the $340 Main. The spring Main had 92 runners and I took the second most money in a chop and I have a 4th place finish in the same event in 2014, back when the $4000 I made was my largest tournament score ever.
  • Blog is done for now, but I will be back in action at 6 PM for the PLO cash game at Palace.
  • On the bright side, I shouldn’t have to suffer through any brutal I-5 traffic to get home.
  • 6 PM: Just got to Palace for some PLO. 9 names on the list to start the game, but one of them is not The Man. That’s not good for this game’s longevity. Having someone that will sit down with $1k, rebuy if they need to, and stay until the game breaks is pretty key.
  • Looks like the game is going to start near full.
  • 6:08 PM: Looks like seven of us to start. The lineup: The Crypt Keeper, John Stockton, Part-Time, the new Palace regular that plays super loose and walked with like $3000 in this game last week, a nit that loves baseball, and another dude that plays this game most weeks.
  • I feel like the new regular is begging for a nickname. I just don’t want to lose him to the nickname curse. I think he played more hours than anyone else at Palace last month. His volume is pretty serious. Anyways, I haven’t had a name really strike me yet, so I’ll hold off for now, but dude is present every day and is in almost every pot so it would be nice to have something to call him other than “the new regular that’s super loose.”
  • 6:17 PM: Dude that dealt to me in the Little Creek tournament is now sitting in this game. Haven’t seen him play in this yet, so I assume his presence is a good thing.
  • 6:21 PM: Ugh. John Stockton just got it all in on the flop with the naked Ad on a three diamond flop and had nothing else going for him… so I have to assume… he doesn’t know both cards need to play. I’m conflicted, I want to tell him because I like him but I also know the rest of the table will be pissed at me.
  • What’s the right thing to do? I think… I have to tell the poor kid.
  • 7:44 PM: I’ve been super card dead. I was thinking about making an update saying just that – with about +$25 in front of me – but then this happened:
  • Baseball dude opens for $15, Part-Time and action dude call. I decide to take a flop with QJT3 double suited.
  • Flop is Q52 with two hearts and one spade. I have top pair, a jack high flush draw, and a backdoor flush draw. I lead out $40 and only Part-Time calls.
  • Turn is the 3 of spades. Two flush draws and two pair. I feel like he can have straights here but I also think he loves to attack weakness so when he pots it, I have a decision. I have a little over $500 in front of me. I can’t fold here and there’s some chance I have the best hand, so I decide I’m just going to go for it. I pot it, he goes all in and I call.
  • He announces, “nuts” and I say I have a lot of draws. He only wants to run it once, so when the ace of spades hits the river I scoop the whole pot.
  • He flashed the 4 of spades and the 6 of clubs.
  • 8:00 PM: Eek. It cometh, it goeth. I open to $15 with 8766 double suited, baseball calls, next guy makes it $80 to go, and it folds back to me. We are all at least $600 deep so I speculate and baseball calls too.
  • Flop is K85 rainbow. We check to the PFR and he bets $135 into $240. I don’t love it. Maybe it’s a fold, but I put the $135 out there and bad things start to happen. The other player makes it $435 and the PFR folds. So now there’s like $975 in the pot and it’s $300 to call. He doesn’t have much behind, so we are playing for it all if I go with it. I’m getting 3.23-1 to call so I need to win about 24% of the time. I have 8 outs to the nuts which gives me roughly 32% – but I won’t win that often because he clearly has a set. Still, I think I have found my way into a profitable all in situation even if getting there was a mistake.
  • I jam and we agree to run it twice. With two chances to hit ~32%, I manage to whiff both times and lose ~$600 on the hand.
  • 8:17 PM: I raise one limper with QT97 double suited and John Stockton 3-bets me to $60 and it folds back to me. Easy call.
  • Flop is T73 rainbow and he bets $50. Kinda weird. I have top two and two backdoor flush draws and I’m happy to get it in against his less than $300 remaining, so I make it $170 and Stockton gets it in with me.
  • He only wants to run it once and the board runs out: T73J8 and my Q and 9 somehow end up making the nuts vs Stockton’s QQJ5.
  • 8:23 PM: Precarious spot here. I open to $15 with AAK4 and no suits. Stockton pops it to $45 and Part-Time calls from the big blind. I have an easy get it in vs Stockton’s stack size and make it $190 to go. They both call.
  • I’m not happy to get it in postflop with crappy aces against Part-Time, but the Q33 with two heart flop is pretty favorable for my hand, especially with the ace of hearts in my hand. I bet $160 when it checks to me, which is most of Stockton’s stack. I will probably have to fold if Part-Time check-pots it. Stockton folds and Part-Time calls.
  • Ew.
  • Turn is a black 5 and he checks to me. I have like $450 behind but I’m perplexed. He should never be calling the flop w/out at least the nut flush draw here and I have the ace of hearts, so I check back.
  • The river bricks also and he checks again. I’m happy to show down at this point and my AA is good vs whatever crummy flush draw he called with.
  • 8:40 PM: Just watched Villain get it in on J76 rainbow flop with 77AX vs J66X, they ran it twice and Villain lost both times.
  • That.
  • Is.
  • Amazing.
  • 9:20 PM: The Man is in the game. John Stockton is back. A maniac just sat down and immediately won $1200 and he’s drunk and super close to getting picked up, while everyone is sitting thinking, “please no.”
  • 9:33 PM: The Crypt Keeper just filleted two of the spewers, drastically decreasing the game quality.
  • 9:48 PM: The maniac sat down with $500 30 minutes ago. He ran it up to $1700, added on $200, and is already felted. Pretty impressive.
  • 10:06 PM: This is pretty special, in all regards. I open to $15 with 7655 double suited and two players call before John Stockton accidentally “calls” with three green chips and it is now $75 to go. I’m positive he didn’t do that on purpose and maybe I should repot here, but I call? So does the other player.
  • Flop is KT9 rainbow and it checks to John Stockton and he bets $40 into $225. Oh my. I call because I just can’t bring myself to fold to this bet sizing, but it would suck to make a big raise and get called by the other player. He also calls. Ugh.
  • Turn is a queen and we all check.
  • River is a blank and I didn’t call on the flop to check this river after the turn checked through. I bet $160. I think my line in this hand is terrible and I don’t think my river bet has much credibility but in this specific case, I don’t think it matters. I am right. They both fold.
  • Weird hand.
  • 10:25 PM: Open to $15 with AK97 with diamonds. I get some callers and the flop comes down T83 with two diamonds, giving me the nut flush draw and an open ender. I like it. I like it a lot. I bet $35 and only the loose regular calls.
  • Turn is a queen, giving me more outs and he check-raises me to $200 after I bet $90. That’s annoying. I call.
  • River bricks me and I snap fold when he announces a bet. 🤮
  • 10:45 PM: I picked a good time to run a multi-street bluff with QT86 double suited in diamonds and hearts on K93dKd5 only to get raised on the river and then watch two players pick up. Game is now down to nicknames only: John Stockton, Villain, The Crypt Keeper and The Man. Oh, and the loose new regular is MIA.
  • 10:50 PM: Free play with Q553 with spades. Flop is QT3 with one spade and I bet $15 into $20 and only The Man calls.
  • Turn is the 2 of spades and I bet $35 into $50 and he calls again.
  • River is a 3, giving me a full house. I don’t see much value in betting, so I check it over to let him bet all his missed draws. He fires $95 at it and I snap call and he shows me TT!
  • Wow. I am losing now.
  • And The Man said he almost always leaves at 11.
  • This game is going down.
  • 11:05 PM: Good God. I open to $15 with A765 with diamonds and John Stockton 3-bets me to $40. Someone else calls and I call also.
  • The flop is AQ7 rainbow and Stockton bets $40 when I check to him. The Man folds and I think he will react truthfully if I make a small raise, so I make it $100 to go and he tanks for a bit and calls.
  • Turn is an 8 and I’m pretty sure, but not certain, I have the best hand. I also have an open ender now. I bet $300 and he tanks forever and calls.
  • The river pairs the fucking queen. I check because I’m not going to torch my remaining $100ish when I’m basically never winning now. He thinks for a bit and checks back with AJJ6.
  • 11:17 PM: I open with AQ77 and clubs in my hand. Villain and the loose player call.
  • Flop is Q74 with two diamonds and I’m not fucking around anymore. I bet $40 into $45 and both players call.
  • Turn is an offsuit jack and I bet pot when it’s my action. This time only the loose player calls.
  • The river gives me quad sevens. I have a queen, I have four sevens. I think I would have heard from him if he had a set of fours. His range is loaded with busted draws. I check it over to him and he immediately bets $200. Cha ching! I eventually go all in for around $500 and he folds pretty quickly.
  • 11:55 PM: Suddenly we are 8-handed again and nothing but action players, including the manic from earlier, sat down.
  • I limp under the gun with T988 with one suit, someone raises to $15, next guy makes it $40, John Stockton calls, I call, and two others call.
  • So it’s five of us to the 764 rainbow flop. I lead out $125, happy to get it in with any of the new players’ stack sizes. The maniac is all in for less, the preflop 3-bettor calls and so does John Stockton.
  • The turn is an offsuit king. I don’t expect this group to fold to a bet so I check and it checks around.
  • River is an 8. I have the nuts. I bomb it for $300 and John Stockton calls my bet and I’m good for the whole thing.
  • 12:18 AM: It’s so crazy. This game was seconds away from breaking 80 minutes ago and now I’m sitting here in a full game with a dream lineup.
  • Where’s the coffee at?
  • 1:14 AM: This is brutal. So card dead. Just sitting here watching the circus fling stacks of chips around. I’ve literally played like two hands in the past hour.
  • 1:34 AM: So brutal. We are down to seven players and the maniac just punted $1800 to The Crypt Keeper.
  • 1:45 AM: Jesus. The maniac just turned $3200 into $70 in less than 20 minutes.
  • 1:54 AM: Well, I participated. And it was scary. Three limpers in front of me and I decided to pop it to $25 with AQQ6 double suited. The small blind calls and the maniac pops it from the big blind to $115, with like $50ish behind. That clears the rest of the field out and I repot to $415 so I can get it heads up… but the small blind calls!
  • Gulp.
  • Flop is A42 with two hearts. He checks and I bet small. $120. He just calls.
  • Turn is an 8 and we both check.
  • River is a 6 and I bet $200 after he checks and he folds quickly and my hand is good vs the all in.
  • 2:56 AM: The game fizzled out as The Crypt Keeper kept felting all the lunatics at the table. This game was insane, with at least five players constantly shoveling heaps of chips in the middle with very little equity and very little clue. During this 2+ hours of pure mania I won that one pot in the update above and that’s it. Meanwhile I think The Crypt Keeper won $5000 in the same stretch.
  • Final Score: +$1060
  • h1

    Plays of the Week – August 11th, 2018

    August 11, 2018

    I’m back! I apologize for the brief hiatus, but I wanted to try something different this week: jotting down notes from my sessions and posting the best hands all at once in an end of the week summary. I enjoy doing live blogs of my sessions, especially when the characters are out in full force, but lately things have been going poorly (plus the 15 at Palace hasn’t been regular) and I wanted to shake things up and try something different.

    As I noted in my last post – when I quit midday on Saturday – it was unlikely that I would play any poker Sunday through Tuesday.

    That was mostly correct.

    We spent Sunday at Emerald Downs for my niece’s birthday. I’m sure it’s going to break my dad’s heart to read this, but I don’t get it. One of my dad’s fondest memories of his own dad is going to the track together and betting on horses. We never did this while I was growing up so it never became a tradition for us.

    As someone that gambles for a living, gambling on things I know nothing about – or in games with a negative expectation – doesn’t appeal to me. It actually physically pains me to watch my wife on the rare occasions when she wants to play in the pit or on a slot machine. I don’t find it fun and when you remove the “fun factor” all that is left is a -EV gambling situation in which you will never, ever win in the long run.

    Betting on horses seems similar. I don’t know anything about the horses or their jockeys or their caretakers, or any of the factors that might come into play when you’re trying to find an edge. If I’m betting, I’m simply clicking buttons or picking names I like. But at least I can see the fun in it. It’s kind of like betting on baseball, but in baseball I’m aware of all the key components (not that it helps me any) and I genuinely enjoy watching the sport, money on it or not.

    But then I tried to make a bet on the computer systems they have set up and I couldn’t even figure out how to find the race I wanted to bet on. I felt like I was reading gibberish. That’s not fun. We ended up having our niece and nephew bet on some horses for us and a horse named Little Joker (of course) came through with a first place finish and booked us a win for the day, but we were firing tiny bets. I guess it was kind of fun, but if I’m being honest, I wouldn’t feel like I was missing out on anything if I never went to another horse track for the rest of my life.

    My plan on Monday was to visit Radio Mike at Cheney Stadium and take in a Tacoma Rainiers game. In a happy coincidence, possible future Hall of Famer Robinson Cano of the Seattle Mariners was starting his rehab with the Rainiers that night after an 80 game suspension for PED use. So suddenly this random game I was going to became an PNW event.

    Normally when I visit Mike at Cheney, I sit in the broadcast booth with him and watch the game and we can chat in between innings, but because of Cano’s presence, this guy was at Cheney and asked Mike if he can sit in the booth with him and thus Joker and I were ousted to the stands with the rest of the pleebs.

    But not before I snapped a selfie that found it’s way on the Mariners broadcast that night!

    After the game, we stopped back in the booth and chatted with Mike for a while and by the time we finally left, the players were coming out of the clubhouse and, with no other obvious exit in sight, Joker and I followed Ben Gamel to the player’s exit where a group of fans were waiting and mobbed him for autographs while letting us pass them by with a mere, “good game tonight.”

    I mean… I can understand them mistaking me for a triple A ball player… but this guy?


    Come on.

    I decided to pop into Palace on my way home and play a mini-session with one goal: make $400 and leave.

    I didn’t know I was going to make a highlight reel post at that time, so I didn’t jot any hands down from that session, but it was actually a pretty wild one. The game was pure action. I described it to Joker like this: Everyone is playing like it’s a race to see who can lose all their chips the fastest and so far I’m winning. I was down $400 right off the bat and it was looking like reaching my goal was going to be extremely difficult. And yet… after less than three hours of play, I cashed out +$565. Pretty sick.

    Tuesday I did not play poker. I went and saw Mission: Impossible – Fallout with Uncle Leroy and then ran errands for the rest of the day before watching Felix Hernandez pitch his way out of the Mariners rotation by getting lit up by the Texas Rangers.

    Wednesday, I was back in action, for some pot limit Omaha at Palace.

    But first! The Man talks me into taking a seat in 3/6 limit hold’em because of the Happy Hour Hand promo and I got a swift reminder of why I never, ever play that limit while I’m waiting for a seat. I raise it up with AA and bet all three streets on a board of 63239 with one opponent calling me down. No flush is possible and I never get raised, so obviously I’m winning this pot, but then my opponent tables… 63. What. I’m not above playing 3/6 while I wait, but I just hate it because no one ever actually plays poker. Anyways, despite this debacle, I still finished +$17 and my 2018 win rate in 3/6 limit hold’em is now a monstrous 9.13 big bets per hour over 67 total minutes.

    PLO got off to modest start. My first notable hand came up when I had A6xx in a raised pot and the flop came down 66A. I made the mistake of checking and my opponents all got to see the turn for free. I bet like $30 on the turn, which was a ten and two players called. The river was another ace and I was first to act. There was a flush draw available on the turn, so there was some chance my opponents were drawing, but otherwise, they probably had an ace, and I thought AT was a real possibility. I also thought if I checked, someone with AK would have a pretty hard time not betting for value. Basically, even though I had the second nuts here, I thought my most profitable line was check-calling. I save money and avoid tough decisions when the nuts is out there and my opponents might bluff missed draws or take themselves to value town with trip aces. So I checked, one of them bets a smallish $60, I call, and he does show me the AT. I flash my A6 and that guy is in disbelief for the next five minutes.

    I spent most of the night up around $500 but then I had a couple of gross connections with The Man.

    We were playing short-handed, but I was opening a bit too wide here with the J766, especially since the game was playing pretty loose and sticky. Basically, I’m rarely stealing the blinds or playing a pot heads up in position, so this is a hand that is going to play like garbage after the flop in a bloated pot and is better off sent into the muck.

    It ends up going 3 or 4 ways to the flop and I don’t have position. It’s already a disaster. The board is decent though: J75 with two diamonds. I have top two pair and a jack high flush draw. It’s a pretty good hand, but not exactly one I’m looking to get stacks in with. I can bet though and I fire out $30 or so and The Man makes it $120 to go. I have a pretty good feeling that my two pair is good here, but if that’s the case then my flush draw is definitely not good. We are way too deep to gamble for stacks on the flop, so this is actually a pretty gross spot. If I don’t like my flush draw, I’m not going to have many run outs I love here. Any diamond is questionable, any straight card around the 75 is bad, any overcard could make a better two pair. Basically I only love jacks and sevens. Everything else is suspect. With that in mind, I should probably just fold to the flop raise, but I ended up calling.

    The turn was a small diamond and I check-called about a half pot bet.

    The river was a brick and I liked my hand when The Man decided to give up and check back, but he was being cautious with a king high flush and won the pot saying, “I think you are capable of checking the nut flush there.” He’s not wrong, but I’d still bet his hand.

    A short while later, I’m raising it up on the button with the J987 double suited and I flop pretty huge: Q65 with two hearts, giving me a nut wrap and a straight flush draw. I bet the flop and The Man calls me from the small blind.

    The turn bricks me and I am planning to barrel off on this one, so I fire a second bullet and The Man calls again.

    The river is the 2 of hearts. The Man checks and I check back, hoping my modest flush is good. It is not. I didn’t see the rest of his hand but The Man ends up winning this pot with the T3 of hearts. I wish I got a better look at his hand and how he arrived at the river because a naked ten high flush draw would be pretty brutal to lose to.

    There was another pot I played against The Man that started off with a $5 bet on the flop and ended up with me facing a pretty large raise on the river holding the second nut flush. This flush came in backdoor, so it was a bit less likely for him to have the hand he was repping, but in Omaha it’s much easier to back into something you weren’t initially drawing to and the minbet on the flop could entice more floats than usual. Also, I would expect him to never raise non-nut flushes here because that would be pretty silly. So it basically comes down to if I think he’s bluffing often enough here. It felt pretty gross because it seemed like he probably isn’t bluffing a lot here, but my instincts were saying call so that’s what I did and he ended up having the nut flush blocker and a bluff.

    Hand of the Night

    We are still short-handed at this point and The Man opens with a raise to $15, the small blind calls, and I make it $45 to go with T987 double suited and they both call.

    The flop is what PLO dreams are made of: 965 with two clubs and a spade. I flopped the nuts, with multiple straight redraws to the nuts, a straight flush draw, and a backdoor flush draw. Let’s. Go. I bet $80, The Man calls, and the small blind pots it to $380. I go all in for less than the max bet of $680, The Man folds and I agree to run it twice with my opponent. The turn pairs the board on the first run out and I make a bigger straight on the second runout and… scoop it all!

    I doubled up and then some in that pot and the small blind never took another hand and the game broke shortly after so I finished at +$883 in my PLO session.

    Thursday morning I had an appointment with my endocrinologist in Bremerton and The Leak went with me and we decided to put our newfound interest in hiking to the test at Green Mountain, a trail we failed to complete in two attempts years ago when we still lived in Kitsap County.

    It was a bit of a challenge – mostly because of the 85 degree heat – but we got it done this time!

    Some views from the summit:

    We got back to Lakewood around 6 PM and I was in need of a short nap because I was planning to play until 4 AM that night.

    15/30 didn’t get off the ground, but we were blessed with a bit of that early Christmas action. I’ve mentioned it before but The Santa Claus Game is full of button straddling, bloated pot sizes, and lots of gambling.

    In this hand, I’m the button straddle holding 88 and five players call before the action is back to me. I think this might be a pretty close spot because how well does 88 play against five opponents? But I obviously have the best hand and I do have the button, so I go ahead and raise it. Santa 4-bets it when it’s back to him and I go ahead and 5-bet cap it.

    There are thirty bets in the middle when the flop comes down 322. Someone donks on the flop, I raise, the big blind cold calls, and the donker also calls.

    The turn is a 4 and the flop bettor donks again. I raise it again. The big blind is really unhappy about the action, but winds up folding and my lone opponent calls.

    The river is a king and betting is probably recommended here when he checks to me, but the pot is massive and I’ll be happy about winning it even if I miss a little value here. I check back and my hand is good.

    I gave the key opponent in this hand the nickname of The River Man once upon a time, but that name is pretty bad and I’m going to discontinue it and refer to him as the maniac for any hands he’s in for the rest of this session.

    Anyways, there are multiple limpers and the maniac raises, I 3-bet with AK from the small blind and it ends up getting capped.

    It’s mulitway action so I check the 873 with two clubs flop and peel for one bet with the ace of clubs in my hand. It’s worth noting that someone bet into the maniac on the flop and he just called…

    …because that says a lot about his hand strength when the turn is the king of clubs and it checks to him and he bets and the button calls. This is my absolute nut card. I now have top pair top kicker and the nut flush draw. When the maniac calls on the flop I think I can safely rule out any flushes and since everyone else checked to him, I don’t think they have flushes either. I go ahead and raise it. The big blind cold calls and the maniac and button also continue.

    The river pairs the 7 and I’m not really sure where I stand now, so I check, the maniac bets and I’m the only caller. He tables two small cards. It looks like 32 of clubs so I ask the dealer for clarification and she pulls in 22 and I’m good.

    And that’s why hands like this happen:

    Button straddles, I 3-bet 77 from the small blind and it ends up getting capped at five bets with at least four of us seeing the flop.

    It comes down Q65 rainbow and I check-call.

    The turn is a 9 and the flop bettor checks to the maniac and he winds up betting after just calling on the flop. I feel like 77 is doing very good against his range here as he is always raising a queen on the flop, so I check-raise. The flop bettor cold calls (gross) and the maniac 3-bets it! Sick. We both call.

    The river pairs the 5 and it checks to the maniac and he tables 97o when it’s his turn to act and ends up winning the pot with a very standard 3-betting hand on the turn.

    Button straddles and it gets 5-bet capped again and this time I’m holding the A8 of spades. The flop is A72 with two spades and four of us wind up putting in four bets.

    The turn is a 5 and the big blind is still leading, so I call and the maniac puts in another raise on the button. The blind just calls and I call also.

    The river is a 3 and it checks to the maniac. The big blind calls and I’m positive that he at least has me beat, so I fold and the maniac tables 54o.

    So nasty!

    So yeah… this game is JUICED UP.

    Which makes this next hand pretty special:

    I open with 44 and the maniac calls me in position. The flop is K54 and he folds the instant my hand starts to reach for chips.




    I open with A8 of diamonds and get some callers. The flop is A42 with two spades and the big blind donks into me. I raise and he calls.

    The turn is the 8 of spades and now the blind check-raises me. Pretty gross. My hand seems like it should be strong, but the two biggest drawing hands (spades and 76) got there, so I just call.

    The river is a blank and I call a bet… and my opponent tables one of the most shocking hands he possibly can: pocket eights. The good ole one outer.

    I ended up finishing this 7.5 hour 8/16 session at +$255.

    Last night was a total disaster. I ran about as bad as you can.

    There was a 4-bet pot where I had JJ on QJ4 rainbow and lost to Q6 of diamonds.

    That about sums up how my night went. I missed every single flush draw I had the entire night and my opponent’s seemed like they always hit theirs against me. I did flop a flush twice and I got zero action both times.

    I went -$571 in 76 minutes of 8/16 before the 15/30 game got started and I didn’t run any better there… I just lost more slowly, finishing at -$607 in 6.5 hours despite hitting a $200 High Hand.

    That was a pretty lousy finish to what started off as a pretty good week.

    All in all, I’m sitting at +$542 over 23 hours heading into today’s action.

    On the bright side, this happened while I was writing this post:


    Just got word that Palace already has 15/30 going so that’s where my day is going to start and hopefully end. If that game fizzles out early we will probably shoot up to Fortune.

    No live blog tonight, but maybe I will post highlights later.