Friday, April 15, 2016

Project Manhattan Session #13A - The Cash Game

I made a rare Wednesday afternoon trip to the Oaks this week and as I pulled in to the parking lot around 2:30 I was shocked to find almost every spot full. I'd gotten a call from a friend/backer/poker player who had just read my previous post and suggested that it would be dead the Oaks because of the Warriors game (the final record breaking game of the season) and I was surprised to find out he was SO SO SO SO SO WRONG! You know who you are Mr. Wrong.

On the way in I saw the previously mentioned Matt Lessinger on the way out who suggested that the Warriors game would have the opposite effect and that the game would actually bring people to the Oaks to watch while they played.

Actually they were both right. It was atypically busy from 3-6:30, but then at 6:30 BOOM! A bunch of games broke as people headed home to watch the game.

By 2:45 I was in a $2/$3/$5 game and I got off to a good start. After 3 players called $5 I raised with QQ to $30 on the button. All three called and the flop came down 6 4 3 all spades. About 90% of the time I remember to check and recheck the suits of my cards before the flop when they are off suit (if they're suited I'm sure what they are close to 99% of the time without looking back when the flop comes out), but this was one of those times when I'd lost track of if I had a spade.

Looking back is usually an indication that you do not have a made flush as most other people also are way more likely to know what suits they have if they're suited. In fact I like to look back as a bit of acting when I do have a made flush specifically to convince my opponents that I don't have it yet.

Either way, the hand was worth betting. My 3 opponents checked to me, I bet out $70 and got one caller who only had about $95 left. The turn was the T of diamonds. He checked, I put him all in, he called, the river was a red K, I showed, he mucked, bada-bing, bada-boom, I'm up $250.

There were two games going and the one I was in was the worse of the two so even though I was winning, about 30 minutes in I moved to the other table.

There was a guy there who I know I've mentioned at least once before, but I can't remember what I called him. He's a regular player and is a steady loser in the game. He always has a big roll of bills that is part small bills and part hundreds. When I say big it's like he has three packs of cigarettes in one pocket. He also has two phones - a top notch smart phone and a bottom of the line flip phone. I'll let you draw your own conclusions about what he might do for a living.

About an hour after I switched games Mr. Two Phones made it $20, I called in the small blind with 87 of clubs and we took the flop 4 way. The flop came out 9 8 6 with two spades giving me middle pair and an open ender. I checked, Mr. Two Phones bet $30, one other player called and it was back to me. Mr. two phones had about $230 left and the other guy had $300 or so. Thinking I might have the best hand and with a ton of outs to improve I considered just shoving it all in, but with only $140 out there, a raise to $300 was a little excessive. I made it $110 thinking there was a chance I'd lose them both even with that bet size, but to my surprise they both called. The turn was a 4 which was great if I was already ahead against other draws and terrible if I was behind. I decided to go for it and moved all in. Mr. Two Phones quickly called for $150, the other guy folded and I was hoping for a T on the river. Sadly the river was a red K. Happily, I rolled over my hand and it was good! Zing!

In my last hour I had one other big hand. I three bet a guy who seemed to be on tilt from $25 to $65 with JJ out of the small blind and got called. The flop was A J 5 (with two clubs)! Whoa baby! If this guy had an ace I was likely to get paid off and I was 99% sure to have the best hand. I bet out on the small side pushing $65 into the pot. He quickly called. The turn was a 4. I considered checking, but decided I'd make more against a ace by betting half pot all the way through and hoping to get called down rather than check raising the turn or check calling the turn and betting the river. I pushed $125 out there and my opponent quickly folded. Drat!

After 3 hours of play I was up $487 and racked up my chips. It was about 5:45 and at 6:15 the $185 Wednesday night tournament was starting. I bought in, walked over to 7-11 and got myself a snack, checked my email on my phone, and just spaced out for a bit.

I'll post about how the tournament went in my next post which will be up soon.

With that $487 win I'm ahead $955 for the project after 49.5 hours. Half way home!

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