...And it was good.
Wall Street Poker has a tourney and a cash game tonight. Though there were a spate of last minute drop outs, there were also some last minute replacements to get a nice table going. Ten people showed up for the tourney and we fielded 9 strong for the cash game. The tourney was a quiet affair, with everyone seemingly getting over a cold (me) or having a real rough week at work (everyone else). There was no music in the background, no TV, just the ebb and flow of poker hands being dealt and plays being made (and bluffs being called down!). For myself, I played solid poker all the way until the bubble. Ok, I *did* make one move. Abbie was down to her last 1800 with blinds at 150/300. I had 6s7s on the button and it folded to me. I raised to 700 to take the blinds and Abbie shoved all in on the SB. The BB folded. It was 1100 to me to see a pot of 2800. Hmmm...2.75 to 1 with suited connectors? I also had a deep stack, so I gambled a bit and made the call. Abbie turned over my second worst nightmare, As9s. Wow. Two overs AND the same suits I had? I'm down to 4 stinking outs here and she can't hit! But the flop was kind to me and a 7h came to save my day. Abbie couldn't hit at all and I scooped the pot. Mary must have been happy because that put her in the running for the standings! So now I was sitting on the 2nd stack at the table (Kevin ouchipped me by about 1000) and playing for bubble. A few hands later, as blinds progressed to 200/400, I picked up JJ UTG. With just four players here, I don't want to be *too* aggressive, so I raised to 1200 to represent a standard 3X BB raise. I was hoping someone would put me on a decent Ace and either come over the top on me with a smaller pocker pair or maybe push with AT or KJ or something similar. Kevin, the big stack, took the bait by calling in the BB. The flop was 973 with two hearts. Kevin checked to me and I bet approx. the pot, 3000. After I made the bet, I realized it was a mistake, because I only had 1100 behind me. Better for me to have bet half my own stack and wait for Kevin to try to push me off. He instantly looked worried about my bet and he said, "wow, I got myself in trouble here". Bingo. I knew he hit something good. Not a set or he would have insta-raised. He either had TT or a good 9. He thought about it for a while and finally put me all in with K9. I called happily, tabling my Jacks and then watching in horror as I dealt myself a 9 on the turn. Bye bye Miss American Pie! I went from big stack to bubble in one fell swoop. But I really felt OK with it considering I had gotten him to basically commit his whole tourney with the worst hand. Hey, it happens.
Kevin ended up riding his big stack into first place, beating Mary in a heads up battle. Mary and Abbie are now less than .2% difference in the rankings. Race on!
A few people left after the tourney and a few more came and we started the cash game at around 9:25PM. Things brightened up for me and I started getting dealt ridiculous cards. Even better, most of them paid off! AA paid off? Check. KK paid off? Check. Set of 5's paid off? Check. Not that I didn't lose some too, but my big wins more than made up for them. I buil my $100 buyin up to about $225 when I got really really lucky. For the second time in a few hands, I was dealt KK. Jesse, UTG+1, raised it up to $3. Matty Ebs called. I re-raised to $12 and got a thoughtful looking call from Jesse. Flop was Js-8s-3c When Jesse checked to me, I bet out $30. Jesse had a big stack in front of him. Nearly as big as mine. So this was treacherous waters here. He looked at me. I'm not sure what he was thinking, but he min-raised me to $60. Ruh-Roh. I tried to get a read on him, staring at him for a minute and then going into the tank. He was giving off a few classic "big hand" signs, but what did that really mean? A set? That's certainly a big hand here and I can put him on that. But AJ is a big hand. So is AsQs or AsKs. So is QQ. Any of these hands are possible. In the end, I put him on a flush draw that he was trying to push. I figured the only way to take it down now was to push all in. I trusted my read and went with it. "All In", I said. No sooner had my tongue left the roof of my mouth to finish the "n" in the word "In" then Jesse was already saying "Call!".
He turned over the last hand anyone expected of him. Jd8d. Talk about your good flops! He played it perfectly, reading me for a big pair, calling my PF re-raise, flopping good and then getting me to shove. It would have been a happy story for him, had the turn and the river not both brought 6's. My two pair beat his and he ended up felted on an awful beat. He took it well though, in the same way I took my beat from Kevin. All you can do is get all your money in with the best of it. The rest is up to the gods.
Jesse was only invested $80 into the game, and he wisely chose to leave rather than playing on tilt. Or maybe he was jsut tired. Either way, we were a player down but still 8 strong at the table. I was sitting on about $475 at this point and I kept hitting cards. Not all of which won. I had JJ which I raised to $10 PF and got 2 callers. The flop was J83 with two clubs. Can you say Yatzhee? I didn't want to scare anyone out, preferring to wait until the turn came, so I checked when it came to me and it checked all around. The turn was a blank 6. When it got to me, I bet out about 15, hoping someone hit two pair there. I got a straight call from Dennis. River was a blank 4. He fired out $25 and I flat called. He showed 57 for the runner runner straight! I got chastised a little for slow playing that, but Dennis only had about $35 in front of him on the turn, so I didn't think he would have folded with his OESD if I had jammed and I didn't want to pick up just a small pot on the flop. Hey, it happens.
I got my money back from him a little later when I flopped a set of 5's on a board of 345 with two hearts. With the straight AND flush draws, this time I did jam the pot. I bet about $30 into a $25 pot and Dennis moved all in. I called with top set and turned a 4 for the boat. He never showed and was felted.
I was a card rack, no question, but I did get another nice chunk taken from me with yet another set. This time, I had 88 and the flop was 68T, rainbow. Matty Ebs proclaimed, "Uh oh, I flopped the nuts. I check." The problem is I've seen this before from him. He might be telling the truth. So when it got to me, I checked to see another card. The turn was a blank. This time, Matty checked and I bet out 10. He min-raised to 20. Was he using the hand against Jesse to crush me psychologically? I had commented on Jesse's min-raise. Was HIS min-raise evoking that memory. I decided to slow down and just call. When the river came with a blank, Matty bet another 10. If he had had a *hint* of how strong I was, he would have bet much more. To my credit, I just called and Matty showed down 7s9s for the flopped nut straight! Damn.
Still, it was a good night. I managed to clear over $300 in profit in the cash game with PP taking over $90 in profit for the next highest total. Viv, who's been 'supping from the Darko trough, lost two buyins playing loosey-goosey. We'll tighten her up before you know it!
Good game tonight. Tuesday is more tourneys and Wed. is the popular $3-$6 Limit Mixed game with HE and O/8 being served up, with a half kill. I can't wait.
Also, I know I've been slow in posting the rest of my Florida trip. It's coming this weekend, I promise.
And one last thing, because I have to say it. If any of you feel inclined to comment on the other blogs about all of the recent drama, I would ask kindly that you refrain from insulting anyone involved. Neither of the other bloggers did anything wrong nor do they deserve the insults and it only adds fuel to the fire.