Monday, August 01, 2005

Getting back on the horse

After a weekend away from online poker, I got back on the horse, firing Full Tilt up. I figured I would pick away at the 1/2 tables, getting my game back into shape.

At least that was the plan. I had two tables up, quickly dropping $30 right away on one on a series of bad beats, bad calls, and stupid play. All that while I was up a bit on the other table. What is did was serve as a huge wake up call.

I slapped myself in the face a couple times and woke up. I folded many hands, waiting to get the starters. I folded when the overcards were out or the draws were strong. In the end, I was up 8 BB after just over an hour. I was pleased.

So please I signed up for the 500 points satellite token freeroll, mainly to get back in the tournament swing. I am going to end up playing the satellites anyway in an attempt to win a spot in the WPT Borgata event, so why not used the points? All I had to do was make the final table.

Things started well. Built up a nice pile of chips, nothing huge. Was just over 3k at the first break. Saw a number of interesting hands. Got 8 8 three times, each winning a pot with a flop of two sets and one full house.

Played some hands pretty aggressively in the second session. But mainly, I took advantage of the idiots. The donkeys. The monkeys. Yes, the fish. I watched them try to bluff again and again, catching some cards here and there. Thus, when I got A A, I knew the push monkey would do something on a Q 9 4 board. He pushed with a pair of 9s. Nice. He gave me the fuel I needed. From there, I was able to bully the table.

A funny thing seems to happen on Full Tilt when the blinds get up a bit. Not very high but around the 120/240 mark. The tables are tighter than tight. No one plays to a raise. It is something I don't see as much at PokerRoom. Better yet, only a couple players realize this and adjust their play accordingly. I become the biggest crook in the world in this area of the game. And it works. Too many players think you are stealing too much. They call instead of raising. When you hit yours cards, you bet them out of the game. Just like taking candy from a baby.

Thus, I was quite happy to be in the lead at the second break. I figured I could hold my own, chip up a bit more and earn a token.

I didn't play many hands when we were down to two tables. I stole some blinds and antes here and there but rarely saw a flop. Basically, my cards sucked. Maybe this is the only time where going card dead may be a good thing. But if I wanted to make the final table, I needed to win at least one more decent sized pot.

I was getting a bit frustrated by one play in the end. Apparently they knew little about tournament strategy. They kept betting out, trying to bluff others out of the hand when one person was all in. More than once they ended up doubling the other person's stack. I was getting pissed, especially when the mental midget ended up on my right when we were at two tables. Man, I wanted a hand to bust them so badly. Especially when this push monkey kept pushing again and again.

Well, I got my decent sized pot out of the small blind with A 10. Two 10s hit the flop. I checked just to have the BB bet into me. He even pushed on my turn re-raise, showing K 3. I guess the 3 on the turn meant he was strong. Actually, it meant he was done. I didn't mind seeing this donk leave as he kept making stupid comments like stating he was laying down a strong hand to a re-raise when he had 6 6 in early position. Yeah, tough laydown there.

Then A A came along and I was able to knock out the push monkey. That felt good. It also put me back on top with just one person left until I get my token. I just had to fold in. I even folded K K along the way which sucked because the last person was busted on that hand. But it was nice to see that final table again. I mean it. The layout for the final table on Full Tilt is pretty cool. I like the studio set.

From there, I decided I just would wait for the Hammer and push with that. Or the Jackhammer. It seemed like forever but then the Jackhammer showed up. And went down in flames. Such is life.

Yeah the prize was just a satellite token, but it felt good to get deep in a tourney again. I just need to get my mojo going in the next tournament to get into the Borgata.

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