Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Badger Poker...Worst cards ever!

Thank you Comic Book Guy.
Monday night at the Lava. I knew it would be tough playing cards this night. Hey, I wanted to watch the Cowboys game and just about decided to pass on poker. But, I decided to try and do both. Little did I know it would have been a lot easier to just stay home and watch the football game.
Worst cards ever! I am not joking about that. The best starting hand I had all night was 3 3. That is it. I never had a chance to raise pre flop. Well, I guess I could have on any crap, but it wouldn't have mattered because Worst Player Ever was raising on everything. Yes, I was at a table with a really bad player. Actually, it started with two really bad players. One busted out to WPE on the very first hand when he pushed all in with his pair of queens and was taken down by a set of 8s. WPE got a set and immediately doubled up. Now, maybe I am being a bit harsh because now that he had a stack, he raised every hand he played, which is good poker and he stayed aggressive betting out. But the hands he played were pretty damn bad. And he got lucky. Really lucky. For example, he called down an all in bet for about 6000 after a flop showed 3 diamonds. The pusher turned up A K with the K being a diamond. He showed A 3 with the 3 being a diamond. Turn is a 3, river the 9 of clubs. His pair won.
I also made an error in playing against him. It gave me a flashback to the very first day of the Badger Poker series where I tried to bluff out a guy on a pot. I thought I had learned that day not to try and bluff bad players. You simply can't. As I said, I wasn't getting any good cards to play. So I defend my big blind in with J 9 even though WPE had raised 500. Flop came 10 4 2. First guy checked, WPE bet 500, one guy folded. I called just to try and play. First guy folded so I was heads up. Turn is another 4. I bet out a pot size bet. He thinks and calls. River is a 10. I don't like that card. I figured he just had the A. I am screwed and need to bet to have any chance to take down this pot. So I fire 2000 and he calls. He shows A 2. He was calling on bottom two pair. A bet on second 4 indicates trips. Unless you are stupid, you fold. Once again, I broke the rules and tried to bluff a bad player. Shame on me. I deserved to lost that hand.
But it would have been good to at least win more than 1 pot. I won the very first one when everyone folded to me on the button. I raised with A 8 suited and got no takers. I guess that was my second best hand. Otherwise it may have been Q 10 or J 10. Nothing else, literally. I called some bets with some connectors but caught nothing. I bled out chips to no avail.

And this table was ripe for the picking. With the way WPE was playing, others followed his lead. One guy called down at least 7500 in best with bottom pair. The guy betting had played very few hands. When the A flopped, I knew he had it. Heck, he raised preflop. At the end he showed his A Q. Guy with the 3s showed k 3 offsuit. Huh? Another guy called down a lot of bets from WPE and couldn't even pair the board. It was bad and I couldn't find a decent had to even see a flop. None of my hands would have panned out anyways.

Finally, as blinds pushed to 500/1000, as I was down to just 2100, I knew I had to find something and push. Saw J 10 UTG and decided now was as good as any time. Hey, I could bust out and get home to watch the second half of the Cowboys. So I push and get 4 callers, including two bad players. I kinda like that. But the flop doesn't hit me. It comes 9 4 2 with two diamonds. First bad player pushes all in with about 7500. WPE calls and third guy folds. First bad player shows pocket rockets. WPE shows 7 3 diamonds. Huh? Sure enough, the diamond hits on the turn and he wins the pot. Funny yet, the guy I try to bluff the first week comes down and starts talking with WPE. I think they are brothers as they look alike. Maybe they are the Worst Poker Playing Family ever?

It was quite frustrating see such bad cards. I believe my best hands were 3 3, A 8, Q 10, J 10 and maybe 6 5. Everything else had huge gaps or were never suited. I tried to play the connectors but couldn't catch any part of a flop. When I tried to bluff, I would get called. About the only thing I could have down was to bluff with all my chips but that would have been stupid. Then again, it may have worked.

Thursday, August 26, 2004

Badger Poker...Ride em Cowboys!

Things started out well enough last night at Gametime. First hand saw me getting some Cowboys. 4 others had limped in so I took it up a notch and raised it 1000 more. Got just one caller to see a flop. She quickly folded and I took the first pot down. And I set the tone for the table. Any good hand resulted in a 1000 raise. Table was playing somewhat tight too. Seemed to be 3 guys who worked together, some guy and his girlfriend (how is it that when a guy/girl play at the same table, the girl is just about always better than the guy?), two other dudes that were buddies and Ahmed the camel driver (he smelled like that at least). Ahmed got knocked early as his aces got cracked by K K. The chick was driving everyone pretty hard. She was a good player. Better than the whiner to my right. He was crying about this and that and showing everyone the cards he couldn't play. I myself was doing ok. I was raising up good cards and taking some nice pots down. Took down a biggie while defending the blinds. Early position raised it by 500. Chick called and I called as well with 7 9 diamonds. Flop came A 8 4, with 2 diamonds. Early guy bet 1000, chick called and I did as well. Turn was a 6 clubs. Guy bet 2000, chick called. I thought about it for a bit. I counted my outs, checked the pot, and figured I had good odds to be paid off if I hit either the straight or the flush. I read neither of them as being on a draw, especially early guy. River was the 2 of diamonds. Early guy bet another 3000, chick called and I moved all in. Early guy called and the chick folded. He just had aces. I took down a good pot just before the break. Sat at 25100, best I had done all week. Just about made a big move at the end of the session too. Guy UTG went all in with about 5600. I looked down and saw 8 8. I thought about calling him but didn't like my position. I figured he didn't have a high pair, maybe J J or 10 10 at best, but could be just an ace. I mucked, but 2 others called him down. He showed K Q, while the others had A K. Of course, an 8 hit on the turn and I could have taken 3 guys out and had a huge lead. Instead, they would chip up nicely in the second session.
Second session had a brutal beginning. Caught A Q early on. I raised up and had one caller. Flop came A 3 6. I bet 1500 and he called. Turn was a 2. I bet the pot figuring he may have an ace but his hesitancy on the flop told me he may have an A but not a good kicker. But before he called my bet, the idiot turned over the river card. We called for a ruling and they said my bet had to come back to me and the hand was dead. Turn over our cards and no more bets. The river card was a 5 to give him a straight. I felt like I got screwed here as he probably wasn't calling. It would bet worse as the same thing happened with my A J. Guy turns the turn card too early and I get beat by a small pair that I was trying to bluff out. I had JJ busted as well by a set so the second session pretty much sucked. Ended it with 19100.
Blinds were going up again and they moved more players to our table. It seemed like everyone had a cigarette in their mouth. Twins fans came with a small stack and didn't last long. New guy on my right was cool. Bigger guy with a Tigers hat that I Had played with before. Then there were two younger guys, one who was a chimney and the other who couldn't get cards higher than a five (or so he says). Took down a small pot with A 8 when I bet out and everyone folded a flop that totally missed me. Before the cards could make a complete orbit, blinds went up again. 2000/4000. Caught 10 10 and raised up to 12000. Chimney, who had limped in, thought and mucked. A couple hands later, I tried knocked out one of the tight guys from early in the night. He went all in. I was in the big blind and tried to defend. I read him for just A high and called with my pair of 6s. He had one ace and another to go with it. Got no other 6 and was hurt a bit. Small blind came to me and I tried to limp. I looked down at A 6 suited and decided to defend it. Unfortunately, big blind went all in and had a caller. With just 5k left, I felt committed and called. Went up against J J and A K. Not enough as none of my suit hit and just like that, I was done.
Played better this night, but made some bad decisions. But now, I wish they could make the game smokeless like many poker rooms are. I felt like I smoked a pack by the end of the night.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Badger Poker...Nice game of Fold Em

Monday night at the Lava started in a most interesting way- with a table change. Word floating around the packed bar was that the place was checked out by the fire department and had a possible code violation with all the people that were playing there. When we first arrived, we were told to come back as they were admitting 20 people at a time. Hmmm...So when I got there and met a friend, we took our beer and went to the loft to play up there as it seemed like a bit more room. That is when the table change occurred. Before we started they took our table and put us back downstairs, to fill out all of the other tables. So instead of having room, I end up next to the bar just to have everyone squeezing through behind me. Not that it would help my play. Sat down and saw some familiar faces. Black widow was there. Another guy who has done well at times was there, but many more new faces.
I didn't get many hands to play all night. Early in the game, I would lose about 1/3 of my stack. I limped in with K 10. Flop came Q high. No one bet so I got a free card, a K. Guy in early position bet. I raised and he called. On the river, I thought my pair of kings may be good so I bet out and was called. He had K Q for two pair. Later, in the blinds, I get the whopping 5 2 offsuit. Flop though came with a 3 and 4. I was open ended for the straight. The implied value was huge. But it cost me more to see the turn and river that just could hit my 8 outs. From there, I got little to play. Limped on some face cards but got no help from the board. Finally, I catch A Q after the blinds had moved up to 200/400. I raised to 1200 and had 4 callers. Flop misses me. I think it came 5 5 8. I bet out 1500. All but one folds. He thinks. He had to think on calling preflop. I am hoping he goes away, and after a moment, he did. He mucked his pair of 9s. I am now back where I started with a small cushion. 10500 in chips. This would be the highest I would get. Still not getting many hands to play. Got on my right seems to want to play every hand. He would stay in with nothing. Guy on the other end would do the same, thinking 4th pair may be good. Sometimes it did work for him. Other times he would call down a big bet and look pretty damn stupid.
I tried to take Loose Boy on my right out. I got A Q again and raised it up to 1200. Only Loose Boy called all in. Cost me 2500 total so of course I called. He turned over K J. Got my queen on the flop but LB caught a K on the river to double up. Damn. Loose Boy would do this twice more. Catch a card on the turn or river to avoid elimination. And he was still playing a lot of hands, mostly splitting pots. He did get knocked out by a pair of 9s by the same guy who mucked to my AQ.
Still not catching any cards. Blinds are taking me down a bit. I limp on a couple and pay a bit more to see another card, but getting no results. With about 3600 left, I made a mistake by just limping on a pair of 5s. If I wasn't going to push all in, then I should have folded. Blinds were now 500/1000. I should have mucked and just played tighter. Instead I made the donation of 1000 to see a flop that didn't come close to helping me.
A couple hands later, while in the big blind, I had to make a move. I was already committed for 1000. 3 others called the bet. I look down to see 7 7. Next hand, blind are moving to 1000/2000. Now is as good as any to push. I do and get 2 callers. Flop doesn't help me. Guy on other end bet and the other two fold. I know he has me by the way he quickly called my all in bet. Early in the night, he was proud of the way he slow played in pocket rockets. Dumb move on his part as he just about lost that hand to a draw and didn't make much on it anyways. He flipped over J J and I was done.
I was disappointed that I didn't do better. Misplayed one hand (the 5s) but felt better about this session than the last two. The talent at the table was on the low side again. There were two players I had to be concerned about and one wasn't catching anything either.
There is always Rock Bottom tonight.

Sunday, August 22, 2004

Potowatami Poker Report- Shakin!

Went down to the Pot on Sunday morning to play some poker. Had this plan since Friday. So when Sunday came along, I woke up, made some coffee and read the paper. One pot later I went down to make some money. Hmm...no, I don't need to eat anything. The caffeine will get me by. Yeah, right.
I get down there and the room is half empty (about 9:15), but the tables are full. There are 5 names on the list for 5/10. No one for 2/4, so I inquire if there is a spot. Sure as shinola there is so I figure I will play some no fold em to warm up. Strange thing begins to happen. I win a pot and begin to stack chips. My hands are shaking like crazy. At first I think nothing of it, but my whole body begins to shake. I guess the caffeine is kicking in hard. I play another pot, in the big blind with 5 3 suited. Doesn't cost me anything so I bet out when the flop comes 3 3 8. But as I bet my hand is still shaking like wild. Everyone at the table picks up on this and begins to laugh. Of course you hear "tell" being whispered like crazy. I play out the hand and lose to someone with A 3. That sucked. Soon, I would get a pair of 7s. Flop gave me a set so I bet. Everyone folds except for one guy who is laughing. I am trying to keep my hands and body from shaking. I try to breathe slow and deep and it feels like it is working except for the fact that I am now starving. I make my quads on 4th street and the guy pays me off all the way down. Someone even says that I stopped shaking when the final 7 hit the table. So I continue to putter at the 2/4 when they announce they will open the 5/10 in 10 minutes. I play a bit more and walk away from the no fold em game down a whopping $4. I was tempted to stay because one guy was calling every bet and not folding. No matter what he had, he was in every pot. He would call down with 3rd best pair and lose. Or even an ace high. But he was also hitting some of these hands and making two pair to piss some people off. I wanted to tag him, but I didn't want to play this game. So I took my shaking and did the smart thing- went to bigger stakes.
Before the 5/10 got started, I drank some water and walked a bit to relax. My shaking had pretty much stopped so that was good. The 5/10 got off to a pretty good start. After a couple of hands went by, I caught a good hand and took down a small pot. Then another. Hooray it is a kill game! Let's go ahead and make this a 10/20 for the next hand. And the next. And the next. I won 5 straight hands. Sadly, the pots were all pretty small. I was catching some good cards early and the board was pairing up like mad. Board would look like 9 9 5 5 3, so I would bet with an A and win the pot as no one was making their sets or full boats. Thus, there was no pot to bet up and take down. Bummer. But I do hit another quad, this time 3s. I guess you only get hats if the quads are 10s or higher. Yeah, because the lower quads hit ALL THE TIME! So I was up right away, but not as much as it could have been. "Uncle Ron" was dealing me good. Someone made a comment about him dealing me good cards and he cracked that maybe he shouldn't deal with his nephew at the table. Of course I played along. Unfortunately my uncle left but my cousin came in. New dealer was the other's son. Funny. Anyway, my streak ends and it get pretty damn cold. I catch some cards but the board is not cooperating. The older Packer fan is taking some pots, but he isn't too thrilled with my Dallas Cowboys hat. The guy to my right is doing a lot talking about how he had only so much time to play before he has to go take care of his 1 year old. I am happy he is leaving soon when he makes a full house and is holding 5 2 to beat my aces. The guy with spiky hair two spot to my left is really quiet and bleeding chips. Harley dude on my left doesn't really know what the hell he is doing. Asking a lot of questions but he is good guy. He keeps circulating his chips, bluffing at pots and quickly mucking when caught. There are also two really tight guys at the table that are playing maybe 1 hand an hour. And when they do, they catch it. So I begin to avoid them, hoping I can catch something take them down. Mid life crisis lady brought a poker book to the table- How to win low limit poker. Good book from what I heard. Now I see she needs to read it and she was playing way too many cards. But I liked it. There was one kill pot that was awesome. I was now down as I wasn't catching too many hands that were playable and I was trying some connectors and such. I caught K 10 and called the $10 bet. Flop came K 10 8. Sweet two pair. I bet and there are 4 callers. Huh? Turn is a K. I have the nuts. I bet $20 and they all call down. Yes! River doesn't matter to me, but I am hoping to see a club so someone caught their flush. Alas it wasn't but I bet out and they all call me down. They paid me off with the nut full house! Pot was over 200 bones. Sweet. But I would give a lot of it back. In back to back hands, I had a draw on a Royal Flush. First I was holding a K 10 hearts (K 10 was working for me) and caught a flop that included the Q J hearts. With visions of hats in my head I chased it to no avail. Couldn't even catch a non-heart 9 or A. Next hand, I have the K again and see a flop that had the J and 10. Turn was the Q. Cost me some more chips chasing for an A or 9 again. Damn. Open ended on a Royal/straight flush and could even hit anything with all of those outs.
People are coming and going. The guy sits down were spiky was. He looked just like a young Jesse "The Body" Ventura! Except he had hair. It looked like a reverse mullet. Short in back but long and feather in the front. Nice! He was a decent player and was making a good stack. Another strange thing begins to happen as well. When 1 came around, the guy on my right left. Over the next 2 hours, 4 people would sit down and then move to a different seat on the table. Was it something I said? I hadn't taken a shower but I used a liberal amount of deodorant. I didn't stink (yes, someone verified for me). But no one wanted to sit in that seat until Badger man did. But even the Walrus moved. At one point, this older black guy said down in "moving" seat. He had a big white mustache that made he think he looked like a walrus. For at least the first 5 pots, he bet pre flop on every one. And he bet or called every card. Even when he had nothing. At one time he thought his pair of 3s would win when they were the lowest card showing? I even made a comment that mid life crisis lady liked. When he kept betting, I asked in the 10/20 game was full. He didn't even acknowledge that I spoke. Ok.
I would get paid off well again. Caught A 8 spades and limped on in. Two spade hit the flop and I bet out. Got raised even. Turn was a spade and I got the nuts again. All 5 other people in the hand paid me off there and on the river. Old Packer fan chuckled that I got paid off once again. I didn't get much from there. Made a nice straight and took down a small pot but nothing big. Mid life crisis lady kept rebuying. Altoid man to my left rebought. Another new guy replaced the Harley fish. After 6 1/2 hours, I left. Unfortunately I played too many hands and paid to see too many cards and left up $45. My small pairs weren't becoming sets. I was second pair too many times when someone would bet their pair of aces. I did take tight guy down once when I did get a 6 to match my pocket pair.
It was good to play down at the Pot once again and make a bit of money. Enough people who are learning the game and play way too many hands. Granny sure did. Though she played poker all of her life, and just learned to play hold em because he grandkids sure have fun playing it, you would think she would have known when to fold. Suckouts didn't get me this time around so that was nice. And now I see on Tuesdays, they are instituting a pot limit game with a $200 buy in and $5 blinds. Plus, you sign up in advance. I asked a dealer how it was but he said Tuesday was the first day. Game also starts at 1pm so that kinda sucks. So I am happy to see the craziness still exists. Next I eat something if I drink that much coffee.

Saturday, August 21, 2004

Full Tilt- Going for 50k

First break in the tournament. I am sitting with 2210 right now, up from the 1500 start. That puts me at 180 out of 620 who started. There are 377 people left. Need to get to 63 to make some money. Blinds are going up every 10 minutes so you really need to play.
I was doing pretty good until a guy sucked out the diamond on the river. Otherwise been in there stealing blinds as the table got very tight in the 30/60 level.
Pros started dropping like flies. Howard Lederer didn't last 10 minues. He went all in with JJ only to find KK calling him down. Andy Bloch, Jennifer Harman and Jesus Ferguson are done too. Top pro is Phily Ivey with about 2600. I need one of them at my table so I can get a shot at a bounty!

Second session doesn't go too well. I am not getting cards and beginning to dislike this fold em game. When I defend the blinds, it gets ugly. I get a 6 2 and small blind limps. Flop is 3 3 10. I bet, he calls. Turn is a 2. I check, he checks. River is a 9. I try to steal it by betting half the pot. He calls and shows his set of 3s. Ugh! Still not getting cards, but am trying to be aggressive. I am stealing the blinds whenever I have a chance. Get Q 9 and decide to go for it. I know the big blind may attempt to defend but what the heck. I raise with a pot bet. She calls. Flop doesn't come close to helping me. I fire away and she folds. Yes! But I keep losing hands on interesting calls. Again in big blind and I am defending. Can't quite recall the hand but I kept firing. Felt the guy wasn't going to call, especially when an A hit the river. I was confident that he didn't have one. He didn't but he pair up the 7s on the board, the third low pair! What kind of call is that?
Now I am chip crippled. Hanging between 800 and 1000. Blind are up and now they have added antes. I am losing chips without doing anything. So I must do something. Try to be patient. Get AA. Fire away! No callers and I move up. Next hand QQ. Fire away again. Get one caller and I am back to 2400. But the blinds are now 200/400 and I keep bleeding antes. Still need to play. Kojak gets no callers. Moved to a different table that is aggressive. Can't defend my blinds when they are raised every time. So I need to steal. Push a 9 10 and steal away. A Q doubles me up! At the end of the second session, I have 2700 and there are 129 people left. Getting close to money. But I need some cards!

Third session starts and I keep getting moved from table to table. Worse yet, I am being put in front if the blinds and am paying out the wazoo! I am hemoraging chips. I am down to 200 and push with K 10 and survive! But the damn blinds are coming around again. 7 7 and I push. Up against A K. Damn king hits on the flop and I am done in 90th place. No dinero for me. No bounties collected. Didn't even face a pro, though I lasted longer than any of them. Highest chip count I had was only 3500. Didn't really do much except take up space.

Full Tilt

Today I play in my first big tournament. A $200 buy in that I won entry into. First place pays $50k. They pay the top 45 people so even if I hit the money, I can win $700. Not bad for a free play. But the competition is good. Clonie Gowin. Andy Bloch. Allen Cunningham. Chris "Jesus" Ferguson. Paul Wolfe. Perry Friedman. Erick Lindgren. Eric Seidel. Howard Lederer. Jennifer Harmon. Phil Ivey. Yeah, like I am gonna just walk all over them. Good part is that if I do, I could win $200 bounty bonuses if I knock one of them out. Cool. It starts at 2pm. Of course, you will read it here afterwards. And if someone I win it, I get to play tomorrow against just the pros to win even more money.

Papa's Social Club- Friday night fish fry

At work, I keep hearing about the wild card game that happens after work on Fridays. Knowing some of the chuckleheads there, I figure it has to be good money. I figured wrong. I didn't cash but I had a good time. There were 7 guys playing. Giggle boy won the game. He knocked me out when I was over aggressive on my two pair and he had the nut flush. Good play on his part. The exsturminator played his legendary loose game. You have to see it to believe it. This man would bluff his own mother if it meant he would get a couple more red chips. Little Bladder Girl won the first game that was going on as I arrived. And did he screw the finance guy out of a pot. Little Bladder Girl pushed all in on his two pair, kings and fours just to see finance guy had aces and fours. LBG rivered his king and took finance guy out. He then went to the bathroom. Again. It seemed like he was heading to the john after every fifth hand. He had to because Curly was counting. It was a good time. Next time around I guess I should hold off the Spotted Cow and focus on playing some winning poker. Good job Giggle Boy.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Badger Poker...Man those wings are hot

Went downtown to Gametime for the Wednesday night game. Thought I would be adventuresome and have the Hotter than Hades wings before everything got underway. Man were those wings hot. My mouth was on fire for a half hour. They tasted good and the heat took a while to get going but Yamma Mama did they burn!
Unfortunately my game wasn't as hot. Things started good as I won the button. About four hands into the game, I caught pocket kings. I raised it up to 1000. I get 2 callers, including the guy who was bleeding chips out in the first 3 hands. Flop comes with 2 hearts. I bet 2500 hoping to just take it down there. Bleeder looks and raises me all in. Other guy folds. It cost me only 400 more (he bled out the first 3 hands). I even asked how he could call on the flush draw before he turn over his cards. And he showed A 8 of hearts and of course hit the heart on the turn. I did my best Hellmuth and said it was a bad call. Germ, the guy I was heads up with at Lava on Monday shook his head in disgust and was asking how he could call. Bleeder sits back and chuckles "I had to take a shot and it seemed good". Idiot. So the very next hand I get dealt pocket 10s. Since it worked so well the last time, I raise it to 1000 again. I get 2 callers again. Flop come with an A and K. Old Asian on my right bets 2000. I fold.
A couple of hands later when I was in the big blind and caught A K clubs. Hey, I am on a roll with raising preflop to 1000 so I do it again. It should be better as there are 4 callers. Flop comes all rags. I bet out 1500. First 2 fold right away. Old Asian on my right thinks. And thinks. And thinks. Finally he mucks. Hey, it worked! I don't get any real good cards for a while. I catch a pair of Jacks and raise to 700. Guy smoking like a chimney raises to 1400. Everyone else folds. Flop comes with rags. I check. He checks. Turn is an A. I check. He checks. River is a rag. I check, he checks. He turns over K Q. He raised with that? And the phenomena would continue. People raising preflop and failing to follow up. At the first break I am at 8500. Should have been better with some of the hands I had, but I am happy. For the next hour, I get absolutely nothing. Get moved to a different table. Get nothing there. And this table is playing tight! Again, preflop raiser wouldn't act after the flop, it would get checked around and the person with little pair would win when a face card didn't hit for the raiser. Can't anyone make a move on a pot? Someone has to. That someone would be me. Unfortunately. I caught A 7 in the big blind. 5 callers at 1000. Flop comes J A 6. Small blind bets 2000. I call as does the Twins fan (a guy I have knocked out of this tourney a couple of times). Dealer messes up by turning the burn card over instead of the correct card. Turn now is a 5. Considering how tight this table was, I went for it and went all in. Twins fan immediately calls me as the other guy folds. I figure he might have an ace with a better kicker. Nope, he turns over a pair of jacks and I am drawing dead. Done in an hour and 45 minutes this night. Played too aggresively again. I didn't figure he had a pair as he didn't raise preflop. Damn. Have to remember to take it slow and easy with these numbskulls sometimes.
But now for the hand of the night. This one happened about 45 minutes into the game. 3 players. Dude on my left, Bleeder and Chimney. Flop comes 10 10 10. It gets check around. Turn is the J of spades. Two spades on the board. Check around again. This is where it gets interesting. Dude on my left is the dealer. He accidentally grabs the top card from his hand and tosses it into the muck and just about flips the second card of his hand. He realizes what he did and goes to grab his other card back. I see this and tell him his hand is dead, because it hit the muck. Germ had seen this as well and agrees. Dude says something nonchalantly as "I only need one card". He then burn and turns over the A of spades. He looks at his card (the one in front of him) and grabs for the one he took out of the muck. In the meantime, Bleeder folded and Chimney bet 1000. Germ said it didn't matter because his hand was dead. Dude was about to complain when Chimney turned over the K Q of spades for the Royal Flush. Dude turned over the 4th 10, the card that hit the muck. Talk about bad beats! His quad 10s would have been taken out by a Royal Flush! He went from going ballistic to happy that his ass was saved! Amazing!

Oh yeah, the disclaimer

I don't want anyone to get the wrong impression when reading these reports. By no means do I claim to be or mean to infer that I think I am a great poker player. I like to think I am a good player who is improving. Maybe some day I win a big tourney or two. Until then, I will continue to try and get better.
Second, the descriptions I use for other people are not meant to be deragatory, nor racist, sexist or any other ist. It is the impression I have of that player, and sometimes a judgement of how they play. Don't read too much into the names they are given.

Badger Poker...I got some cards, now what??

I have done well at the Rock Bottom Brewery making the final table in the last two events held there. I even thought I would support the cause by wearing one of the polo shirts I had won. Maybe that wasn't such a good idea. It is like putting a target on your forehead. But I digress.
Game started on the slow side. I was talking with 2 guys who had played in the Rock 102.1 tourneys that were held during the summer. They had said how loose and wild they were. After a couple of hands, I saw why. We started with 9 players. Guy on my right immediately started freaking out about some of the cards people were playing, especially the moron in the corner. Yes, moron accurately describes him. He called down a third of his chips with a pair of 3s- low card on the board. Interestingly enough was the fact that it got beat by a pair of 8s, 3rd low on the board. I also liked it when his girlfriend bet out a high amount on him trying to force him to fold. She was a good player. Moron's girlfriend (MGF) frowned when he called, apparently not getting the hint. He would dump more of his chips soon enough. I tried to loosen up a bit, see some flops early with some high suited and connectors. Early on nothing was coming close so I held off. I got QQ and raised up with 2 callers. Flop came with an ace. Ugh! Check, I bet, one guy folds, and the moron's girlfriend calls. Turn is a K. Now she bets. I muck. Best to get out while I can. Before I knew it was slowly draining chips down about 4k. I raised out with A J in early position and caught the Deion Sanders fan (he was wearing the Deadskins jersey and a Noles hat). Flop came K Q 7. I bet out the pot and he called. Turn was a rag. I bet again and he folded showing his pair of queens. Nice.
A little bit later I would look down to see QQ again. I raise 600 and get 2 callers including moron. Flop comes J 4 5, all diamonds. Crap! Don't tell me my queens are going to get busted again. I bet out 1500 and he calls. Turn is another diamond. Not bad, but not great. I check, moron checks. Turn is a rag. Moron goes all in. I sigh. Don't tell me my queens are going to get busted again. He counts up and actually has 300 more than I do. I give the crying call. If QQ is busted again, then nothing will go right. Moron shows a pair of jacks. He had no part of the flush. Whoo hoo! I am alive for now.
I need to mention the loose player on my left. He got on a bit of a rush with some good cards, and some bad cards. I didn't care for him either. He was always taking the cards off the tables and putting them in his lap. He knocked out a couple of people though when his aces were hitting the flop. People start dropping like flies at our table. Miller guy doesn't last long. Sanders fan is soon gone. All at the hands of Loosey to my left. He even causes a commotion when he doesn't protect his cards and they are accidentally mucked. I had caught A 8 suited and tried to steal the blinds. I raised 600. He immediately called (which I didn't mind as he was raising preflop with just suited cards, no matter how high they may have been). No one else is in when the dealer starts putting all the mucked cards together and grabbed his. We called over the pit boss (ha!) to settle it. He told him what cards he had and pulled them out. Tight boy didn't like it but I didn't care. Flop hit, I bet and he folded. He would go out the next hand when he would raise the pot 2000. New guy to the table would push is stack all in ( he had over 20k). Loosey, who was tall stacked immediately called and started counting up. New guy had him by a couple thousand and showed QQ. Loosey shows A 2 offsuite. WTF? A quick all in call with that crap? Needless to say, he was done.
Tight boy would go next. He goes on a big 3 way pot. I had caught 5 5 and called his bet of 500. He had two callers down the line as well. Flop come 10 10 9, two diamonds. Tight boy bets 1000. Guy on the end raises him 2000 more. MGF calls the 2000. Tight boy, who is small stacked and pot committed, goes all in. Easy decision for me as I muck. Guy on the end raises all in as well. MGF thinks for a while and calls. The guys each show A 10, while MGF shows Q 9 of diamonds. Diamond hits the turn knocking one guy out and severely crippling the guy on the end. He moved all in on the next hand and doubled through. Immediately on the next hand he pushed again after I had raised the pot. I had Q 10 diamonds. It would cost me about 25% of my stack to call. I figured he couldn't have much so I did it. Got no help and he doubled through again.
With blinds at 500/1000, I caught some jacks. I raised up to 4000 just to have guy on the end go all in again. I only had 4700 left so I had to call. He showed me his K K and the door. I last about an hour 40 minutes. Maybe I shouldn't have raised half my stack, just a smaller amount. Then I could have backed off. I was hoping to catch one of the any ace players and take the chance the A wouldn't hit.
There is always the next game.

Monday, August 16, 2004

Badger Poker... I think I need to call TJ Cloutier for advice

Monday night. I should be upstairs in my tenants apartment trying to fix a small leak in the plumbing but instead went to play poker. Can you blame me?
Ah yes, the Lava. Don't necessarily care for the place, but it is a poker game. Interesting how the demographics slightly change between the east side and downtown. More college age kids here (not a surprise). From what I am hearing, they are playing a lot of poker at home, though thankfully, they aren't totally interested in becoming very good poker players. But on to the game.
I plunked down at the closest table. Who did I see? The black widow! She kinda sneered at me. I was going to enjoy having a chance to knock her out early. Other people at the table weren't anyone else I had played with. Some younger guys I had seen for the first time. Things started really slow. Wasn't really catching anything good to begin, so I tried to play some Ace suited connectors, etc, while the blinds were on the low side. That didn't work that well. By the first break, I was sitting around 6k, down 4. Nothing too exciting was going on, and I hadn't even drug in a pot. There was an aggressive blond who was doing battle with an Asian guy. She jumped up pretty quickly as she made some bigger bets to take down smaller pots. Asian guy was taking chips off of sunglasses guy. Greasy hair guy to my right had moved up nicely as well. There was a lot of big bet calling going on with small pairs winning. Third or fourth pair was taking down the pots. Strange.
When the blinds moved up, so did I. Got A J in early position and raised. Got 2 callers. Bet the pot on the flop (it had totally missed me) and they bailed. Hey, you need to win one to get it going. Again, I didn't play that much for a bit, took down another small pot. The black widow and sunglasses guy got into an all in situation with Asian guy and both of them were gone. Later, I took out the aggressive blond. I limped in from the button with Q 8 clubs. 3 player saw a flop of J, 7, 9- 2 clubs. I bet my gut shot half the pot and had just the aggressive blond call. Turn was a 6. Aggressive blond moved all in for about 1800 more (she had been bleeding a lot out). I counted out what I would have left if I went for it. I would have been sitting with about 4500 if I called. I figured I a ton of outs and called. Hit the 10 for the straight and took her down. I then moved to another table. One guy easily had a bigger stack than the others and was bullying them around. He would raise every pot (good move). Blinds were now at 500/1000. I caught A K quickly and raised it with 2 callers. A hit the flop and they folded. I had gone back above the original 10k mark to about 15k. Slowly but steady. I was able to push up even more soon. Got Q J in the cutoff. Bet was at 2500 and there were 4 people in the pot. Flop came 9 10 K. Cha ching! I bet 7500 to try and take it down right there. Everyone folded except for a different Asian guy, the one who was causing the action at the table. This is the guy I wanted. The big stack. Turn was nothing of interest so I moved all in. Action Asian thought about it. The bet was about 8k or so. He counted out his chips. Played with them. Thought... thought...though. And folded. Damn! Smelly dork to my left with the truck driver cap on had to rabbit hunt. This caused a small commotion at the table as most people didn't want him too. Action Asian looked at me as I was about to toss my cards. He said to me "I don't want to see your cards" as if I was going to show him and say "Nice laydown" or something. Instead, I shot back "You are going to see them, you need to pay!" Boy, do I make friends or what?

I was now around 30k going into the 2nd break. The second session had been very good. Now I was going to try and hang around and see if I can make a move to the final twenty. Nothing spectacular happened in the next session. I won a few hands here and there. Knocked some people out, but no real big hands, though I did double up. Most interesting thing really was the table. The actual table kept breaking down. One of the brackets wouldn't stay in place and every time Action Asian leaned on the table, it would buckle a bit. Otherwise, players started falling by the wayside. Guy on my right was playing some good poker. He made a nice move on me to force me out of a pot when I had QJ again and tried to limp.

Got moved to another table then. Action was pretty tight with about 30 people left. Any raise seem to cause the folding to begin. Except when I tried. Caught A 9 suited and raised up. Greasy hair guy from the first table was going all in. Damn him. Fold. Didn't play many hands here. Got moved again. But before I did, 3 young bucks were going at it. Big pot taken down knocked out 2 as more guys got knocked out at another table. Suddenly we were at 20. Everyone started high fiving. WTF? Must be the first time for them. Me, I feel like been here, done that. They are talking about where they are in the standing and how they are going to move up again. Pffff! Ain't catching me tonight boys!

I then move to another table as blinds are now 2500/5000. I am sitting with around 40k and feel like everyone at the table is smoking. This table was represented by one big stack and 2 mediums. Everyone else was sitting about 15k or less. A Q split a pot with A Q, but knocked one guy out. I doubled up with a pair of 7s against A 6. People were dropping like flies. I got moved again to the other table. There were about 12 left and they evened us up. They redrew cards for the button and I caught it. Blinds got moved to 5000/10000 with a 5k ante. Brother to my right doubled up twice in a row to get back into the game. I had a A J hold up when I flopped an ace. Then two big stacks went at it again catching a 3rd guy in the middle. Bam two people were gone. At the same time, two others got knocked out at the other table as well.

We would start the final table with 8. I was hovering around 125k or so at this point. There was 1 really big stack, 3 medium stacks around 200k, myself and 3 little stacks, not even enough for the blinds. These guys went out quickly. I was able to double through again when a pair of snowmen held up. We were then down to 3. I was on the smaller stack with about 300k or so. The other guys were sitting around 500k and 400k it appeared. We played 3 way for about 15 minutes. I was able to move up as I played rather aggressive. I got up to about 500k when the other two got into the battle. The guy who had a big lead at the final table had been whittled down. He got out kicked by A 10 to beat his A 9 and was out. He would proceed to sit at the table, kinda sulking. We were down to two. I was out chipped by about a 7-5 margin.

I took control early with a pair of Ks. I would keep the pressure on until he was down to his last 200k. Caught K Q and moved all in. He had A 10. He caught his A on the river to double through. He moved back up nicely. He doubled up again when my K Q couldn't pair up against his ragged A. I was now down to about 250k. I felt like TJ Cloutier. Doing well again, but couldn't seem to win the big one. Got A 10 suited and pushed. He called with a K 4 and hit the straight on the river. Second place again.
More shirts, hats, blah, blah, blah. I wanted the victory. I feel I outplayed him, but couldn't get the card I needed for the death blow. Worse yet, I realized as I was driving home that they hadn't taken my name down for finishing in second. I need to make sure they credit me with my points. Top dog, gotta stay being top dog.

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Badger Poker...Finally, Victory?

It is a Wednesday night, so I must be at Gametime to play poker. Got there early to eat as I didn't have any food in the house. Was going to try the Hotter than Hades wings but decided to opt for the burger at the last moment. Good fries. Talked with the Twins fan Justin. Compared notes on what we thought about the whole series, the players, etc. Looked around at the tables that were set up. They are all regular poker tables now. Nice enough. Looked around for the right place to park my butt. Hmmm...where are the rubes? Saw some guys I had played with the prior night but that table was full. Damn. So I chose a fairly empty one. Space is good. So would the table be.

When play started, things were a little confusing at first. They were playing in two separate rooms, so it seemed like communication was not flowing between them as to when to raise blinds, move players, etc. This meant we got more play in at smaller blinds. Play was tepid at first. No one was playing much. So when I caught an Ace and nobody bet the 800 pot after the flop, I through out a bet and took it in uncontested. I would win a couple, lose one, but slowly chip up to just under 20k. Best hand was catching KQ with 2 callers. Flop came A Q 10. I bet 800 and was raised 1000. The turn was a J for the straight. I checked as the others checked as well. River was a rag. I looked and noticed one guy had about only 4k more so I moved all in. He thought for a while. I though he would call but he tossed it. Later he would keep asking if I had the K. At the end of the night I let him know.

I would stay just under that 20k mark for quite a while. Never going above and not any significant drops. A pair of K pushed me above the 20k mark. I took down a couple more quick pots to go to about 29k. People were moved in and out of the table. Some bigger stacks showed up. Play was flowing nice. The chick to my left showed up and knocked out two guys before a break. I don't think she liked me calling her a Black Widow. Oh well. When play resumed, they filled our table up to 10. I now had two big stacks to my left. There was a slow player in the middle (he had monster hands that he never raised preflop and rarely bet more than 2k at any time). The tight guy 4 over to the left was consistent. Luckily, I was able to double up. I moved all in 3 spots in with K J spades. The big stack to my left quickly called. Oh crap! I counted out my 29,300 and pushed it all forward. He easily had me covered. Everyone else folded. He showed A K offsuit. Oh well, it was just before 10. Maybe I will get some sleep tonight. Flop came all spades. Jackpot! Oh wait, he has the ace of spades. No spade, no spade. None on the turn and river and I double through.
Now I am just under 60k and floating around. Steal some blinds, avoid some major confrontation as we drop to about 30 players. I would soon drag down a hefty pot. I look down two see pocket rockets. I was in late position and looked around. Blinds were up to 2000/4000. There were two limpers already in. I looked down and moved it up to 25k. I get two callers, both bigger stacks. Did I screw up? I put half of my chips in. Should I have pushed them all? Flop comes all rags. The other two check the turn and river. I turn up my aces and they have held up. I am now at 160k with 3 tables left and feeling good. As we got to 20, I didn't play that much. Defended the blinds, picked up some small pots. We waited and waited until we had our final table.
Going in, I noticed I was either 2nd or 3rd. But only 2 people had very small stacks. Blinds were now 10000/20000 plus a 5000 ante. Ouch! I was shocked that he added the ante. I think it is a great move, but 5000 was pretty high. After the high card came out to pick the new button position, I was suddenly putting out those blinds. On the second or third hand in, I tried to make a move. Caught A Q clubs. The pot had been raised to 100k. I moved all in (probably too aggessive here). Guy to my left called as did the original raiser. I saw A 10 suited and then K K from the original raiser. Ouch! No ace or clubs helped me and I dropped dramatically down to 60k (I had them both covered). Played tight from there. Caught an ace and moved all in for no callers. That helped. People started dropping left and right. There was the aggressive old guy to my left now. He dropped a good pot when his bluff was called. Otherwise, the others chipped there was out. I got back up when my K J held up knocking out a guy. I got some more when A 9 paired the 9s. On that hand I knocked out Justin the Twins fan for the second straight night. Suddenly there were only 4 people left. Me, the chip leader and the lady on my right who was very quiet. I noticed she had a big stack earlier in the night but at the final table, the blinds and ante slowly bled her. She went down on a low pair that lost to two pair. Now there were 3 and I was in trouble. Blinds were now 25,000/50,000 and antes of 10k. I had about 2000k or so left compared to their 1.2 mil and about 900k respectively. I posted my ante and blinds and caught nothing. Old guy tried to put me in post flop when I had the small blind. I called the BB with a J 7 suited. Flop came 8 10 Q. He moved me all in. Did I want to make a stand and go for the gut shot? No, not taking the chance with those cards. I have two hands I can see before I am all in. I had 65k left and was on the button. Toss my crap cards out. The other two big stacks then went to battle. I was shocked to hear one guy go all in and quickly get called. Before I knew it, old guy was out! I fell bass ackwards into 2nd place. I was shocked. I had half a stack. The good tourney player waits for me to fall out. I wasn't complaining. I thanked the old guy twice for letting me fall in.
So I moved my whopping half stack in against the guy who looked like he had 25 stacks out there (each stack being 100k). I survived the first hand. Good. Then the second, and the third. Now he was tossing hands. I had 8 stacks now. But my big comeback wasn't to be. I had K 5 in the small blind. It was quarter to midnight. Flop came all spades. He checked. I checked. Turn was a red card. He moved all in. I figured he didn't have an ace and was trying to bully me. I didn't think he had a flush, but I didn't give that much thought. I called figuring I could hit the flush or at least have high card. This move wasn't the brightest. I knew immediately I would have folded in all instances. This guy bet only when he had it. I was thinking more of doubling up and really getting into the game. He showed his flush. Last card was not a spade and thus it ended. Got me a polo shirt and hat and the thought of how I woulda, coulda shoulda, played better the last hand.

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Missing a day

One of the problems with setting this up after doing a couple of reports is that I either cannot find them (I guess they have been deleted in my email) or maybe I didn't have a report for a certain day. Aug 10 is one of those days. I played at Rock Bottom again and came in 4th. Not bad. Hopefully, I can find the report somewhere and put it in.

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Badger Poker..Day 3, Where's my shirt?

Gametime! No that is the name of the bar that had the tourney last night, not some proud declaration. One guy I work with always says that so and so won because he caught cards. For the most part, it is true only because it makes it easier to play. It is when you don't have the cards that matters how you play. That and a little luck. But before we get into that part too much, I know what you are thinking. How were the wings? Best wings of the 3 days. They had their own sauces which gives them a resounding victory. I went with the Firestorm. It had a bit of heat. Good though. Next time I have to try the Hotter than Hades. Supposedly it is much hotter.

But on to poker. I got into the room with about 10 minutes to play. It was packed. Little room between tables. I squees into a spot, one of the few that are left. I notice one guy from last night right away. I then see the Cowboys fan at the end. I noticed how aggressive he likes to play. And then there is my nemesis. The idiot player who knocked me out. Yes, the idiot player (IP for short). I can now substantiate this as he is not a good player. Lucky maybe, but not good. In like the second hand, he called down half of his stack with 3rd pair. Yes, third pair and he called a final bet of 2500. Amazing. There was one other player like that at the table, who I would knock out. But for the most part, I didn't get much to play. Early on I did get big slick but that was busted by trip 5s. This guy played it well. He had the pocket 5s and flopped the set. He slow played and then made a good bet. Took me and another with big slick for ride. Suddenly I was down half my stack. Not much happened. Later I would knock this other guy out with pocket jacks. But little else as blinds went up. Suddenly I was down to just 1700. Went all in on J 10 and beat out J 9 when no help came. My K Q would double me up with a Q. Later, my K J would suckout A Q when I hit the K on the river. That popped me up to 15500, the highest I would get. I went out on a decent hand. With the blinds at 500/1000, it was raised to me a total of 4500. I was in the big blind. Had pocket 10s. I raised it 4500 more. He gave the big sigh. I liked that sign. I figured A high, not even with a face. He finally called. Flop came 8 8 5. I moved all in with my final 6k or so. He quickly called and showed A 8. I knew he didn't have a bigger pair, but he had me. 2 hours of not much but I had made a small move. If I had doubled up again, I had enough to wait and start to steal other blinds. For a while though, I must have gone a half hour without playing a hand.

I did try and bluff out some. In one case, I allowed my nemesis to double up mainly because I didn't know he was down to 1000. I raised with J 10. Had IP and another. Flop came with rags. I bet 1000. He called all in as the other guy folded. He showed A 9. Ace high won. Later on, he would hit a straight on the river to double up again. He finally got knocked out when his flush didn't fill. He called a 3000 raise with 5 6 clubs. Amazing. Now you see why he is an idiot player. I will look for him at future tables.

Overall, I didn't get much to play. I did very well with what I did get. Got lucky on some, but had little to play with. Pushed in on players I knew would call. Hit some, mainly when it counted. So it goes.

What I am looking for is feedback. On the last hand with pocket 10s, should I have gone all in? I think my bet was good. I was willing to take a chance and see the flop hit. If an A hits, I am out as I had him pegged on the ace. I also say to go all in is wrong as I have a better chance for more action. Your thoughts?

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Badger Poker..Another day..another shirt

Went down to the Rock Bottom Brewery yesterday to try and put the debacle of the previous night to rest forever. As I bellied up to the bar, I hear a voice calling me out. My co-worker Cale is there with his friend. We chit-chat for a bit. I had mentioned how my reports might become about wings instead of poker if I got knocked out right away again, so he encouraged me to get the wings, mainly for the hell of it. Rather that jam into a booth with these guys I found a spot at the bar where I could gather my thoughts and where any wing sauce that came flying off the drummies wouldn't land on someone. The Honey Creek Ale was good. And the wings weren't bad. Better than the previous night, but in the world of wings, they were just ok. I was able to gather some info about some rule changes. I guess an email went out announcing they were switching to a blind structure. Good, the antes was a crappy method.

Went downstairs to play some poker then. I would say the tables were half full (meaning maybe 3 or 4 people sitting). It was pick your spot again, so I took a table close to the bar (Yeah, I know, what a surprise!). The table would fill to only 8 people. Cale walked by and talked about being on the final table (yeah right!). It was good to see that dealer button. Blinds would start at 100/200. I had decided to not necessarily play aggressive but to pick my spots. My first play was on the 3rd hand. Caught As Qd. I was one before the dealer and was deciding what to raise to when someone else kicked it up to 600. I called with 2 others. Flop came all spades. I thought this was a good spot to bet out and went 1000. He thought for a bit and folded. I figured he had a mid pair, and the suited flop was disastrous for him. As play went on, I noticed he didn't play much. Seemed tight and not that aggressive. Unlike the Viking fan next to him. He played aggressively. He raised the first pot to 1000 right away. Apparently he was catching some cards. Guy on my right was trapping people. He trapped me at one point when I tried to buy a pot. There was one chick at the table. Apparently the sister of the organizer. She wasn't that good. She paid to see too many pots. The ASU fan was ok too.

Nothing much happened during the first session. I had taken down one big pot and a couple of small ones. Hadn't seen too many flops, and was slowly moving back to my starting position. On the hand before the break, I would catch KQ 2 spots left of the deal. Blinds were 200/400. I raised to 1000. Everyone folded but the dealer. Flop came K J 8, rainbow. I bet 2000. He called. Turn came a rag. I bet 3000. He sucked on his cigarette and said something about the bet being half the pot. "yeah, roughly" was my reply. He thought a bit and called. River was an A. There is no flush draw, but there is the straight possibility. He thought and then asked how much I had left. I was down to about 4800. I had him covered so I wasn't too concerned. I was thinking what he had. I was extremely confident he didn't have a K and was pretty certain he didn't have an A either. He may have been on a flush draw earlier and didn't catch it on the river. I figured when he asked about my total, he was going to bluff. He was the one who folded earlier to my bet on the flush flop. I was pretty confident I had the best hand at this time. He bet 2500. I called after just a moment and told him "Don't tell me you sucked out for an ace!" and showed my K. He mucked. After the break, he came up and asked how I could call. I told him I didn't think he would suck out for the A. Reality was, I was confident he didn't have an ace but his bet was bad. If he had the A, he most likely would have had two pair and would have gone all in. I could call his bet and still have enough to work with for a couple of hands. At the break, I was sitting at 17600. Not bad, but not great. I had increased so I was happy. I looked around to see how Cale was doing. Couldn't find him. He must have busted out early.

They consolidated some tables and it was then I realized how low I probably was. One guy sat across from me with over 50k in chips. The Viking fan at the other end of the table had been our chip leader with about 30k tops. A Cowboys fan sat down with about 30k as well. Blinds were moved to 500/1000. Two hands into the session, I caught QQ and raised the bet to 4000 total. Only the Cowboys fan called me. Flop came Q J 3, with 2 clubs. I made a smaller bet of 3000, hoping the bet would look like I was just trying to scare him off. It worked. He raised me all in. I quickly called. He showed pocket 7s, no club. Though he was teased with a 7 on the turn, my queens held up and I doubled through. Over the next hour, people stared dropping like flies. Nothing much happened for me. I took down some small pots. Still had the trapper on my right so I was careful with any pots that we were both battling for. I tried to limp in on some but the small stacks were getting giddy and pushing all in. Cowboys fans got busted. ASU would go soon too. Viking fan choked. The chick went out right before the second break. At the second break, I was sitting at 20400. I had peaked at about 35000.

When we started up again, they broke out table up. There was about 35 people left (from my estimation). They moved me over to what would be the final table. There were 3 big stacks there and 2 small ones. The small stacks started pushing in on any hand and were quickly taken out. I caught the Qs again and doubled up once more. Players are dropping again. Before we knew it, it was down to 20. Blinds were pushed to 1000/2000 and then to 2000/4000. I was chipping up, taking some chances with Aces and faces. I pushed up to about 50k, then 70k. I doubled through when I raised with A 4 clubs on the button and was called by A 8 diamonds. Hit the club on the river for the flush. I was now sitting at about 110k. Play meandered and we were down to the final table. Play got so tight then. I started at roughly 6th spot at the final table. The small stack to my left went out quickly. The chip leader who was on my right started raising every hand preflop and giving his chips out. He was soon out. The new chip leader was an old guy on the end. Anytime someone went all in preflop, he started whining. It was becoming the move to make, especially late, blinds were up to 5000/10000 and then 10000/20000. There wasn't much wiggle room. I called an all in bet with A Q just to see he had the same. Just about caught the spade flush but it was a split. Got A 6 then and moved all in. Got called by A 2. The deuce hit the flop and I was out in 7th place. It was 11:15 and they were doing things to encourage play. Antes were coming up next so I just moved in with something decent. Took a bit for the guy to call, but he was looking to leave as well. In the end I got a shirt for making the final table. Another day, another shirt.

Monday, August 02, 2004

Badger Poker...well, kinda

I went down to the Lava Bar and Grill last night for the first night of the Badger Poker Series. What can I say about it. I had a couple of beers (Riverfront White..quite tasty) and some wings (they sucked) before playing. Then I played cards.

So what would you do, early in a tournament. 2 limpers for 200, guy before the dealer raises to 500, each limper calls. Flop comes 8 8 3, two clubs. Check to raiser. He bet 1000. First limper folds, second limper raises to 3000. Turn is an ace of clubs. First limper goes all in. Raiser thinks, thinks, and calls. He shows A, 10. Limper showed 10 2 suited. That was my 15 minutes of non-fame.

One thing I remember from reading about poker online is that you cannot bluff a bad player. I should have remembered that at this time. For it is true. Whether this guy who called is truly a bad player or not, it is to be seen. Maybe I am the bad player for trying this bluff. Still, the flop misses you, and you get raised after the turn when there is a possibility of a set and a flush you call an all in bet? Makes no sense to me to call such a bet early in a tournament. Thought it was a good bluff. Guess I thought wrong.

But in the 7 hands I played in, it was strange. First hand, 5 players limped. After the flop, everyone folded to a bet. A couple of hands later, someone made their preflop bet, bet the flop and turn but checked the river. He folded when the one who stayed in bet out. Seemed if they had an ace, they were thinking it was theirs. People folded quickly to a raise.

I went with my strategy. Try and be aggressive and get some chips early. It didn't work apparently, but I got T-shirt, I think for being first out. Better yet, I talked to the organizer of it and he said he was going to a blind bet structure. He told me they use antes in Madison to keep the tourneys short. My comments were to go to blinds and use antes after an hour or so and jack them up as needed. His early feedback showed people preferred blinds. When it happens, who knows. Sad thing, is what happened to the Lava bar. People would come in, register and go across the street to Hooligans. Why would a bar host something like this if they do not get any business from it? They won't. And if word gets out to Rock Bottom or Gametime, they may drop it quickly if they have the same thing happen. Maybe it is just the east side. Crowd was predominantly college age kids. And from the short time I was there, it showed.

Maybe it will be different at Rock Bottom. Or maybe just the beer will be different. We shall see.

Sunday, August 01, 2004

In the beginning...

there was email. And it was good. But archiving was a bitch so why not let someone else do it?
So I decided to set this up to entertain the millions (ok maybe half a dozen) people that like to read about how things are going at Potowatmi or the Badger Poker Series. Hopefully I can find other trip reports I have done and add them on.