January 06, 2012
I play in this very loose aggressive 2/5 live underground game. They all know me as a good player and I am the table captain for sure. I dictate the pace of the game and overall people hate getting into pots with me. Despite the fact that I spewed last night overall people react to me in a few ways:
1. They try to run me down. They know they aren't better than me so they will try to catch on me instead.
2. They try to bluff me out of huge pots
3. They avoid me
I haven't been barreling that much but have been looking for decent spots to do so. Just about every hand there is a Mississippi straddle which means the button straddles to $10 and its up to the SB to act first it gets folded to me UTG+2 and this is where I made a mistake. For some reason I was in an off mood that night which is a great indication I shouldn't even be playing but I overrode my gut feeling and went. I have been doing a pretty good job of avoiding these situations but in this case I did not. It's important to create a winning poker players cycle. So, if you spew instead of going off and getting boozed up take the time to do productive thing and keep yourself focused. It took me a long long time to get to this point. A lot of heartache, anger and sadness but when shit hits the fan now I study hard. It's all about confidence really. You gain confidence from studying. I don't believe in a prodigy and you shouldn't either.
The game of poker is not static, it's dynamic. If you want to put a suit on and work and job where you can zone out for 8 hours a day then go for it. I think it's modern day slavery to work a minimum wage job but hey, thats just my opinion
So, UTG+2 I raise to $40 with A5s. I don't like my pre flop raise but it gets folded to MP who calls. MP is somewhat competent but very very weak overall. While she has an ok understanding of the game she spews like crazy. With a little work she would be decent but from my perspective she doesn't want to do the work.
Anyways, the button, who Mississippi straddled calls and we see a flop of K85 rainbow. My thinking here is if they don't have a K they are turbo folding to any type of bet but I am also prepared to fire 3 barrels. I'm out of position and the girl gives me a lot of credit. Actually, Live players in generally always put you on the top of your range.
This is a very static board texture which means the nuts are unlikely to change by the river. I always look at how theirs eyes interact with the flop and neither of them looked very interested. A long stare generally means they're trying to find a way for their hands to connect to the flop.
Anyways, I chose $40 because I feel like it's hard for them to continue with anything. If they have a 3 or a 5 it will be hard for them to take any type of heat on the turn. K8 isn't out of the question but the girl wasn't in super spew mode just yet. That would come later in the night if she was stuck and drunk. The new guy wasn't loose enough to call a $40 pre flop raise with K8 and 35 isn't something I felt like they had very often either. Maybe they float me with A high but I have an A so that makes it unlikely. Any middle pairs can't take 3 streets of pressure. $40 is small and probably confusing to them but I just didn't think I needed to bet that much to get them to fold, even though I'm out of position.
it's good in any form of poker to not take standard lines. What if I bet $80 and they call? I create this huge pot that I may have to give up on by the river and that is one of the worst things you can do in poker, bloating up big pots only to give up on them on later streets.
Anyways, to my surprise they both call but not quickly. They weren't happy with it and I took about 40-60 seconds to bet and they each took about 30 seconds to call.
So the turn brings an A. I'm staring at the button and he doesn't like that card. I feel like I now have the best hand so the question is how much should I bet? For them to both call they have a K here a good percentage of the time. The girl isn't likely to float the flop to take the pot away from me on the turn with someone to act behind her. The guy isn't likely to do that either. Remember the more players in the pot the less "poker" you actually play so its very straightforward what they have and it's this spot where maybe I missed a little value.
Why? Well I ended up betting $80 into a pot of $240. I wanted to bet smallish because the A is a scare card and since I had the feeling I was ahead I wanted to keep one of them in the pot.
But what if I Check raise? Or Check/Call bet the river. It would be a really confusing line in which I think I make more money. First lets complete the action of the hand.
So only the girl calls at this point and the guy folds which is weird because I don't think he has the courage to fold a K so his most likely holding is some sort of hand combo with a 5.
The river is a beauty, a 3 of spades and now I'm thinking how much can I extract out of her? I elected $110 into a pot of $400 and she ends up folding.
She said she had KJ with a turned FD but I find that hard to believe she wouldn't call $110 on the river with a K since she has a questionable pre-flop hand selection. But If I check, assuming she has a K, and then she bets $80 and I raised small to like $160-$200 then she'd probably have to call me and then I could fire $110-$150 on the river and she'd have to call.
While she would have sensed she was beat I feel like she would call anyways because thats what live players do. They find reasons to stay in hands and talk themselves into calls.
Anyways, any thoughts on that line as opposed to the one I took?