Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Back in the SnG Groove

Here comes our hero, striding confidently across the room and assuming his place in front of the laptop. Another multi-table tournament beckons and he is full of assurance, brash even, as he chases glory. Stars in his eyes, visions of online poker immortality ricochetting inside his head, he registers and prepares to dominate.

He is--I am--a jackass. A jackass who lasts a full 25 minutes.

How dare these players not respect my large raises? Don't they know who I am? Don't they know I have two final table apearances and two other top 15 finishes in the last month? Doesn't my fearless all-in bet inspire cowardice? The immediate mucking of marginal hands?

No, dipshit. Not in the first hour.

Ah, hubris.

Yes, I'd been feeling pretty good about my game. Then I went out and got involved in two races in the first two levels of last night's tourney. Lost a third of my chips on the first. The rest on the second. You can't win the tournament in the first hour, but you sure can lose it. So I did. I should know better. Pocket Js and pocket 9s not exactly the premium Group One hands with which you want to involve yourself in an early raising war. Yeah, I was called by marginal hands, KQs and AJo (I told you that hand was gold), respectively. I should have known I would be. Later in the tourney perhaps, when it tightens up, my bet probably takes the pot. But not then. Never then.

Oh well. All part of my continuing education. It's a pretty endless learning curve this poker, isn't it. I'll go back to school tonight.

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All was not a total loss on the poker front, however. Shortly before the tournament began, good pal and frequent reader poker_ghost pinged me with news that the fish were pooling on the Party Poker NL tables. So I headed straight there after crashing out of the Stars tourney. I didn't see the loose tables he promised, but I have a theory about that. I think the really, really poor players lose their nightly buy-in(s) fairly quickly and quit for the evening. As such, you end up with better players with bigger stacks as the hour gets late. I didn't hit the site until midnight East Coast time, so I guess I missed the feeding frenzy. The one NL table where I did play, I saw only a couple pots bigger than $10 in an hour. I was also playing some $2/$4 during that time, where the action was much looser, and, at the end of the session, mildly profitable.

Then I fell off the wagon.

There was a time when a large percentage of my online poker attention was taken by the single-table SnGs on Party. And they were profitable for me, if occassionally frustrating. But after a six-week run of poor results, I swore them off forever. I hadn't played one since February 10th on PP. I hadn't WON one since January 21st.

Jumped into a $20 SnG last night for old times' sake. Won it fairly easily. Didn't go to showdown a single time until I was already in the money. We were a long time at six players, but then one guy took out three in short order, including 4th and 5th in a single hand. I finally showed down a hand when my ATs took out the short stack's K8s. I was at a 3-1 chip disadvantage, but it didn't stop me from being aggressive. A couple hands in, I raised with Q7o on the button. He called and I flopped trips, along with a jack. He minimum bet (200), I called. Same on the rag turn. Same on the rag river when I raised him all-in. He called with KJo and I had the upper hand. I pushed him to the brink and finally all-in with KQo. His A8o stood up, however, and it was back on. He pulled slightly ahead, but then I crippled him with a four on the board flush. We both had top pair/crap kicker. In fact, neither of our kickers would have played, an issue rendered moot by the fourth club on the river, making the 3c in my hand good enough. Good ol' Ace-Jack took care of him a few hands later.

Felt good. And maybe best of all, it didn't totaly re-kindle a desire to play those things more often. I think I will drop by more frequently however, just for a taste.

Yeah, that doesn't sound like a guy who just had a beer for the first time since rehab. "I can have just one!"

*********************************

So much going on in the football (not soccer, dammit) world. And I know that's why you all come here. Sorry.

Liverpool beat Everton in the Merseyside derby on Sunday, moving to within 5 points of the final Champs League spot in the Premiership. The only thing that can compare with Liverpool winning is Everton losing. And the Champs League quarterfinal matchups were drawn on Friday, with a potentially explosive semi in the offing between the Reds and the Blues. Explosive meaning it's another opportunity for me to lose a bet to Al. Gotta get by Juve first. Not the best draw for 'Pool, but not the worst.

Lots of World Cup qualifiers this week, too. We'll be watching the dear and patient wife's homeland (Sweden) battle Bulgaria on Saturday. And, of course, the NAFTA Grudge Match at Estadio Azteca between the US and Mexico on Sunday.

Both countries have their best teams in recent memory and are in good form, so it should be a well-played game. Nearly impossible to win in Mexico, in that stadium, at that altitude. I'll settle for a point.

1 Comments:

At 1:06 PM, Blogger poker_ghost said...

Sorry about the mis-information, the two tables I was playing were extremely loose and passive. I saw high pocket pairs limp several times and would call to the finish line no matter what.

 

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