Saturday, May 05, 2007

My Last Hand of the Day

I had an interesting hand come up on Thursday. I'd put in my full days work and I'd left 5 out of the 6 games that I'd been playing in. In my last remaining game (a $2/$4 blind no limit hold'em cash game) I was ready to take my last hand of the day. I'd had an uneventful day and found myself ahead a little under $100.

Already thinking about watching the NBA playoffs (Go Warriors!) I was expecting to pick up a crappy hand, dump it, and call it a day. Instead I picked up 88 which while not a fantastic hand, was good enough for me to play. I had just under $160 in front of me which meant if I went broke I'd end up having a losing day and probably a bit of a bitter taste in my mouth. "I'll be careful with this one," I thought.

I raised it to $12 and decided I'd be fine with picking up the $6 in pot. But I got called by one player in the field as well as the player in the small blind. The flop came down Q 9 8 with three different suits. I'd flopped three of a kind which I thought was almost certainly the best hand. This is a situation where normally I would consider checking to disguise the strength of my hand, to give the other players a chance to bet if they had a hand like KQ or AQ, to let someone bluff at the pot if they missed or to give my opponents an opportunity to catch something on the turn that would lead them to calling the rest of the way (that was a bit of a run on sentence!). Of course, while there are those benefits, sometimes checking in a spot like this blows up in your face when one of your opponents makes a hand even better that yours.

I decided not to mess around and bet out $24 into the $38 pot (Pesky pokerstars had already take $2 out of the pot for those of you about to challenge my math...E.B.). I was surprised when I got called by both players. I started to think about what they might have and what the chances were that I was behind. I didn't think either had QQ because neither reraised before the flop. The player in the field was a solid regular player and I didn't think he'd call a raise with J 10, but the small blind could have J 10 and be slowplaying a straight. Either player could have 99 and be slowplaying a set. Of course there were 165 possible two card combinations out there all of which I could beat so while I wasn't sure I was going to win the pot, I still liked my chances.

The turn was a five which I thought was a fantastic card. Unless someone had 67 it didn't change anything. The pot had $110 in it at that point and I bet out $60 expecting at least one, if not both of my opponents to give up and fold. Instead the player in the field made it $120 and the other player called all in for his remaining stack (which was a little over $100). Uh oh! I was pretty sure I was beat in one spot and thought there was a chance that I was in third place, but no way was I folding to save my last $60 when there was already almost $400 in the pot.

I crossed my fingers and called for a five on the end. I was pretty sure I'd need to improve to take down the pot and I thought the small blind might have a hand like Q9 so a 5 seemed like my best bet. Come on five! Put a five one it! Five it up! The river came out and it wasn't a was the last eight! Quads baby! Send it!

I made the total nuts on the river so I didn't have to worry about what my opponents had. But I was still curious. It turned out the player in the field who I thought was too good to call my raise with J 10 had called me with 67 and hand turned a straight. The other player who should have folded before the flop, on the flop and on the turn showed 95. I guess he figured he should call before the flop since he was in the blind, he managed to turn second pair and made two pair on the turn. Every decision he made was a massive mistake, but it worked out great for me.

That one pot turned an otherwise marginal day into a solid winning day. Also I just wrote another post on a totally different topic which should be right below this post. Check it out.

No comments:

My WSOP 2023 Plans and Missions

After four and a half years working for StubHub I wrapped up my time there in March. I've been at the poker tables 3-4 days a week since...