Feb 24 2007

Home Game Hijinx

Published by at 4:17 pm under Poker

Last night I played in the home game again. A few people we thought would show didn’t, but a few I didn’t expect showed. We played 4 handed for a bit until one of the unexpected people showed, Mark. I hadn’t played with Mark in a while, but we had a history of him making all in moves on me in the past and was a pretty loose player. He played pretty well and made a lot of good calls against me. He definitely has changed his game since I last played with him (probably more than 8 months ago).

The first significant hand was with I was dealt AQo in MP and raised to my typical .60 (it’s a .10/.20 game remember). Mark, who is directly to my right, is the only caller. Flop was AK7 with 2 hearts. I bet out .90 and Mark raised to 1.90. He had been raising small like that quite a bit, which I wasn’t used to seeing in his game. Last time he did that was when he had AT on a ten high flop, so I needed to figure out if he had a hand. I make a real raise of $4 more after a lot of deliberation as far as pot size and such goes. Mark thinks for like 3 seconds and pushes in. Well, if I raised for information, I was getting all the information I was going to get. To be honest, the 2 hands I was worried about were A7 and 77. I hated to do it, but I layed it down even though past experience with Mark allowed him to have a variety of hands. Being it’s a friendly game, he showed his hand of KK which I didn’t expect with his preflop play. So I rebought another $10 to get be back a little over $20.

A few hands later, I lay have to make another lay down vs Scott when I decided to slow play in a very poorly played pot by me. I was OOP in the BB with A9s when Scott raised from the button. His raise from the button meant nothing more than he had 2 cards. Especially since the tightest player at the table was to my left and in the SB. To make a short story short, Scott bet out when I checked my 2 pair on the turn, I just called, and he hit a Q on the river to complete his gutshot. I check, folded – again hating to do it. He showed his KJ when the hand was over. A few hands later, again in the BB, I flop 2 pair on a T76 flop with my T7 in a family pot. Rich check/called me and was the only other player to see the turn. The crappiest card for me to see came on the turn which was a 9 and this time he lead into me. I thought for a while, but again, since he was typically the tightest player at the table, I had to really consider how well I’m doing in this hand. I end up folding knowing there are few cards that make me feel good about my hand on the river. The problem I had was that he bet 1.20 into a pot that was like 2.50, but could easily have had T8 or T9 or even slow played his 89 on the flop. I fold and he shows his AT, but I don’t really feel bad about my play.

Then comes a whole series of hands that don’t work for me, I am in the BB again, this time with 85 and 3 to the flop. Flop comes JT9 and I check. Mark bets .5 into what was likely a .60 or .70 pot. It folds to me and I instantly call to see if I improve to my str8. Probably not the best call in the world, but that’s ok. A blank comes on the turn, a low card like a 4 or something and it goes check/check. A J comes on the river and I check to see what Mark does. He again makes a .50 bet and I almost instantly make it $2 since it looked like a weak move. If he had a J, I’m certain he woulda bet the turn. He does take a bit to think about it and then makes some speech about how he will give me the money. I instantly fold and he shows his Ten and I think his other card was a 7. Busted play.

We had been having a lot of straddled and restraddles pots, and this pot was a straddled pot. I was in the straddle and 2 players called the straddle. There was $1.50 in the pot and no one has showed any aggression. I decide to make a play at that pot and make it $2 to go. Mark is the only one who calls my $1.60 raise. Flop comes a gorgeous QQQ and I bet out $4 leaving me with a little more than $7 behind. Mark thinks forever and then finally folds since I really hadn’t been making many moves. I show my T3 and take down the pot. He just laughs and said he had K8s. I was like, what were you thinking about when I bet that flop? Or even preflop for that matter? Sigh. So much for him being a tighter player.

Mark told us around 10:45 that he was gonna leave at 11. It was like 5 minutes until and I got QQ. Seriously, this was my first pocket pair until then and we started around 8. I was in the BB again. Mark had the straddle and 2 other players call, so just like the previous hand I wrote, I made it $2. This time Mark makes it $1.70. Barely a min raise since my raise was a $1.60 raise. After a discussion on whether that was a legit raise (one player thought it needed to be double the previous bet, not previous raise), I deliberate with my options. I only have $8 and change left if I call and the pot would be around the right size that he would have to call. I’m pretty sure I’m good right here, but I wasn’t sure if I wanted to gamble to double up or make a move at the pot after the flop. I decide to go for it after the flop. The flop was all low buy coordinated being 567 with 2 of a suit. I think for a moment and push into what was like an $8 pot. Mark thought forever even calling out my hand as likely being QQ. He folded showing his AKs. With all the thinking that went on during the hand, it was past 11 and he cashed out with $1 profit. They fished the turn and river with the river being a K. Glad he folded.

So we were 4 handed a bit until Jeff (who I hadn’t been involved with all night) ended up calling a push by Scott on a hand with a lot of action pre and post flop. I was surprised to see both hands. It was KT for Jeff vs AK for Scott on a QJx flop. Jeff didn’t improve and didn’t reload, but he dealt for a bit.

My last holdem hand was another with me in the BB. I had 99 and Scott was raising quite a bit. Since I was by far the shortest stack at the table, I had gotten a lot more tag. Scott raised on the button to .80, Rich called and I made it $2.50. Scott thought and called, and Rich folded. We made a couple of jokes about me having T3 and when the flop came out QJ8, I said, “Look, now I have a gutshot, so I check”. Scott checked behind which I thought was interesting. How could that board not have hit him? Well, when the A comes on the turn, I decide to try and follow up on a scary board and bet $3.50 leaving me with around $11.30. Scott just calls with some hesitation. A deuce comes on the river. I take about a second and push since I think the hesitation on the turn is a sign of weakness. Well, I was off on the weakness thing but I apparently made a good enough move to really put Scott on his heels. While he deliberates, he reveals his A8 hand for 2 pair on the turn. He apparently was weighing his options on the turn and not hesitation due to a weak hand. He goes through about every decision making tactic he can think of including flipping a coin, checking pot odds (it was pretty close to 2:1). I even give him a half price call to show if he folds. Just when I think he’s gonna fold he grabs his stack to call that he had counted out for the last 10 minutes and tosses it in the middle. I sigh and muck my cards. Almost worked. They throw some pity on my and decide to switch to omaha since we are short handed and I rebuy for $30 more since they significantly have me outstacked. I had been making omaha comments all evening with stuff like, “Don’t I get 2 more cards”. They threw me a bone, but I woulda played more either way.

Fortunately for me, I was the only one with any real omaha experience, but it was fun to play. It was a lot like the way we used to play a couple of years ago when we started the game. A whole lot of hand showing for learning sake. I wasn’t learning much, I was mostly talking about why you would make some decisions, but the other 2 had played little (in Scott’s case) to no omaha (in Rich’s case). I did do well at omaha though when I set over set Rich. I potted preflop with KKQ9 from the button. Flop was KT8 and Rich potted the flop. I contemplated calling but I repotted figuring he likely would have TT or 88 there since he wasn’t potting a lot of hands unless he had a real hand. I didn’t see him doing this with a draw, even if it was a big one. He repotted and we just considered it an allin bet since it was close and any calling was committing everyone and neither of us were going away. Before he did that he said there was only 1 real hand he was worried about which told me he had TT. I called instantly and he immediately knew where he was in the hand as I counted my chip stack. I hit my str8 on the turn with the J and he didn’t 1 out me, so I was up a little bit on the evening at that point. The funny thing was, he did a similar thing with middle set earlier and took it down but I warned him at that point saying that set over set is way more common in omaha than it is in holdem, so you have to be careful. Lesson learned.

I ended up calling Rich down on a hand where I had the second nut straight with a flush redraw and but never improved and gave back about $8. I ended the night down $3 which wasn’t too bad. Just a shame we didn’t get to play omaha the whole night. ;)

I didn’t play my normal game which was loose preflop in position like I normally do, but for the most part, I don’t think I played all that bad. Just got caught in some awkward positions and some people who were able to make some good calls. All I could think of as I typed this up was the Eric Lindgren moment from HSP.


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