CHAPTER 2 MAYDAY! MAYDAY! KICKER TROUBLES!
"Selecting the proper starting hand is as essential as playing the hand itself."-Lyle Berman
Starting with hands like K4, Q2 is a recipe for losing a lot of money. The following is a story that took place at Foxwoods Casino Poker Room during a 17 hour poker bender.
One of the things I pride myself on as a poker player is the ability to size up my opponents quickly, and use that information against them. The problem is sometimes you have to wait a long time to actually use the information.
I was sitting $1-$2 no-limit 11 hours in and $900 up and in walked one of the biggest fish I have ever seen. He started off by dumping $100 (the max buy-in) every four hands or so,for the next 3 hours, but I was card dead and none of it was coming my way. My table captaincy (chip lead) was in trouble as he proceeded to make the people around me rich, I was starting to get a little drowsy, and I knew I would probably be in for the long haul, so I took a small break to fresh up on food and caffeine. Twenty minutes or so later, with raspberry pastry still on the side of my mouth I trudged back to the table to find (in my horror) that the fish was now an overwhelming chip leader and the players at the table almost completely different. One player sitting next to me who survived the carnage described an unbelievable 20 minute run of luck in which players were cold-decked, counterfeited, river-ratted, backdoored, runner-runnered, and sucked out. One double-up turned to 2 and 2 turned to 4 and as I returned he sat proudly with a stack that dwarfed mine. Keep in mind it took me 14 hours to build my stack up to $1000 and he had doubled that number in just over a matter of 20 minutes. Just as I was sitting down, I watched as my fish friend was involved in a hand with a poor youngster who although experienced, was not ready for the likes of this guy who was willing to throw money at nothing at all. The youth raised in early postition to $22 dollars (11x the big blind, a huge raise) and all folded to the fish in the big blind who threw his four red $5 chips in quickly and with much disinterest. The flop came K74 and the fish tossed out 2 green $25 chips like they were nothing at all. Wanting to protect his hand the youth re-raised another $150 all-in which was insta-called by the fish. Neither turned over his hand as both wanted to wait for the river. A deuce fell on the turn and when a 9 popped on the river the fish proudly turned over his K9 for top 2 pair. The kid just slumped back in his chair picked up his cards and slammed pocket aces face up in the center of the table. "Fuckin donkeys!" he exclaimed and got up mumbling something about the worst players as he stomped out of the room. It was a truly Hellmuthesque performance. The fish meanwhile was shouting to the table "Don't mess with the dawg boys, my favorite hand will bite ya!" At just over $2200 he had reached his high point, and was soon due for a big fall. You see his problem is, he can't lay down anything, and consequently when you play everything, hitting anything at all makes the hand seem better than it is. The following are the 3 hands I played with him over the next 3 hours which ultimately led to his demise.
1. The slowplayed slick
When playing at a table you always want the tight players to your left and the loose players to your right. This guy was two seats to my right. He was in early position and raised to $10. This was a regular occurance and with a hand like ace king, rather than raise and possibly blow him off the hand, I decided to play it slow and milk him for more money. I smooth called and the flop came AJ7 giving me top pair top kicker. His continuation bet of $25 left his hand before the cards even flopped. It was this move that possibly saved him from me doubling up on him because I had no idea where he was. Instead of raising here I wanted to further induce bets so I flat called and waited for the turn. The turn came a Q for a board of AJ7Q and once again he fired $65 this time. It was at this point that I liked him for an ace as he took a second to ponder my call this time before putting in his bet. I figured I should test the waters at this point and I raised another $100 putting some pressure on him. He called quickly and looked to the board in anticipation for the river. When a jack fell on the river making the board AJ7QJ he proclaimed "great card for me" and proudly threw in another $200. While this card worried me slightly, his proclamation made it very easy to make a call because most people upon sucking out don't announce it to the world. He turned over his ace deuce, fully expecting a split pot, but when I turned over ace king he shrunk in his seat a little grumbling. "Wow you played that horribly." he stated. "Did I?" was my rebuttal.
chap2 to be continued soon........
Last edited by beautifulrock; 03-26-2007 at 08:42 PM.