Shoulda, Woulda, Coulda..
I decided to spend Sunday watching Football in my favorite, I.E. Only, B&M casino, the always lovely Foxwoods. I arrived at the tables at 1PM just in time for the kickoff to the Miami game. I received a seat pretty quickly about 20 feet from the giant plasma so I could watch Football all day long in relative comfort. It was going to be an interesting day.
I sat down at the table and started playing with the guys who would be my table mates for the next eleven hours. There would be a few changes but the core team of six of us would trade chips all day long.
I looked down at my first hand and was staring at pocket jacks. Now JJ will tell you that they are ooookayy, but he is a tool. Jacks are dangerous and should be avoided at all cost. I get raised by the MP to $15 (Standard 1/2 raise in this game) and I cold call wanting to see a flop. The flop comes all cards under eight and so I bet out twenty. The "kid" who initially raised puts me all in. We will call him "Overplays TP Kid".. He consistently pushed hard with his top pair any kicker flops. In this game that paid off well. As a funny side story he got busted eight hours later. Apparently he had used a fake id before and was banned from Foxwoods. I thought real hard on the hand and it being my first hand of the night I figured I might as well take the shot to double up. I call. We flip the cards and my JJ is good against his TT. First hand of the night and I have doubled up.
My second hand of the night was KK and I end up taking that pot down uncontested. It is nice when you get good cards. I would soon find out that the table was split into two halves. The half to my left I will call murderer way. I have never sat down at a 1/2NL game at Foxwoods and thought that more than one or two players were good. I had four players in a row that I considered decent.
To my direct left was KGB. He spoke with what could only be described as a Russian accent.. however I am not sure he was Russian. I probably should have asked. He would tell me later in his roundersesque accent that I was very easy to push off hands. He was probably right. He had around $300 in chips. The next in line was the Overplay Overpair Kid with over $400. Next to him was a VERY aggressive Asian with a HUGE gold cross, lets call him JesusAsian..
I know, big surprise aggressive Asian player.. It may be a stereotype.. but it can be true!!! He was very good at making people make that tough decision. He had around $300. The final guy who I showed any respect to was Chess Master. He was a school teacher who taught chess to rich school who could afford his fee. We would mix it up later on. He was a white-black guy. Very polished and refined. Totally opposite of the stereotypical opinion of black people we get show every day on TV. Very smart guy. He was sitting with around $500.
To the right of me was the loser alley. Drunk Horney guy was directly to my right. He was drinking and hooting at everything that passed by. He did not get into too many hands. His friend was directly next to him. I will call him the Anti-Santa. You will find out why soon. Next to him was the Asian guys cuz. He was really bad. Where his brother used aggression to buy pots he called huge bets with 6th pair. Big difference lost on him probably. He did actually get lucky and go home a winner though.
Next to him was a guy who would not last too long. On the third or fourth hand at the table the guy took, and I kid you not, twenty five minutes to decide to call his entire stack off with second pair. He kept trying to figure out if he should call or not while JesusAsian put on the best rock of a poker face and stared him down the entire time. He did not move an eyelash. Finally the guy puts over $100 in to make the call and loses to top pair stupid kicker. Foxwoods informed us that there was no way to call time on anyone. When I asked if someone could sit there for two hours they said no, but could not elaborate on when the person would be forced to make a move.
Not a whole lot happened with me after my first few hands. I played a solid game. I won some money. I got into a hand with the Chess Master where he flopped a boat against my AK. I ended up getting away from that hand relatively unscathed. I also got into an interesting hand with Cuz. I had pocket rockets and had popped it to $15 pre-flop. The flop comes 22Q. Since only two hands beat me I am not folding here. So I bet out. He calls. A two hits the turn. I bet out and ask him if he has the Queen? He makes some comment.. then decides to push me all in. I insta-call. If I am beat by a two or pocket queens then so be it. He had some crap hand and probably put me on Ax and thought I would fold. I do tend to back off hands too often but every once in a while I will make a stand which usually ends up paying off for me.
I had chipped up to over $400 when the worse run of cards happened. It was insane. I will say though it felt like home. Exactly like online poker.
The first hand happens when a shorty pushes his last $15 in. He gets like six callers and the flop comes AKx. Nobody bets the flop. The turn is another king.. I end up putting in twenty there and get cold called. The river is a 9 and the guy who cold called me, JesusAsian, pushes in for another thirty. I have to call there. We flip over. The main pot goes to the guy who pushed his last few bucks in. He had pocket rockets. I lose the secondary pot to JesusAsian on a rivered boat with the nine. Ouch. Three outer. I thought that hurt.
Next hand I get involved in is with Anti-Santa. Now this guy was a fat fuck. He was jovial and fat and could for sure play Santa. Poker was another story. I have AK and I pop it $20. I get one caller. It is Anti-Santa. The flop comes Axx and I pop it again. He cold calls. The turn is a blank. I pop it AGAIN! Hello! I raised. Right? He cold calls again. The river is a ten. I am kind of concerned now. He checks and I check behind. He turns over AT for the rivered Ten. I have now lost two hundred bucks in two hands with somewhat brutal three-outer loses. Ouch. Ok though. I am still up a hundred.
I look down and see pocket sixes. A small raise comes in EP and I call. The flop comes a very coordinated 236 with two spades. I decide I am ahead of this hand and prepare to push. JesusAsian bets twenty into the pot and Anti-Santa PUSHES his last thirty six. I decide that the board is too coordinated to let JesusAsian stay in so I raise another hundred. He folds. The fat Santa bastard turns over TT and I am loving it until the ten on the turn. OWWWCH! I got two outered. "No no no" say KGB I had a ten too. A one outer after the flop. I think that's like a 4%'er. So anyone who says online poker is rigged.. well, all poker is rigged. I really can not blame Anti-Santa for that move. He had very few chips left and he had an overpair. It still hurt. Three hands in a row and I drop all of my winnings.
Of course this is enough to put me on tilt for a little. I played very poorly for the next little while and ended up going out when I pushed my remaining $40 with sixes into queens. Ouch. REBUYYYY!!!
One thing I have often heard when talking to people I respect who play this game is that they rebuy alot. They are always prepared to rebuy. Online I would usually lose a buyin to a sick beat and then leave the table. I think it is VERY key to be willing to rebuy in these situations. Every time I have gone to Foxwoods I have brought three buyins.. because that was a number I was willing to lose. The majority of the times I have gone I had to rebuy at least once. It is a small thing but very important.
So I finally pull it together. Tell myself to stop calling of the $15 raises with speculative hands. Tell myself to play a little better. I finally look down and see AJc and I pop it to $15. I have around fifty left. I get called by KGB. The flop comes all harmless undercards and I assume I am ahead so I put out a $30 bet leaving me with another $15 or so. KGB instantly puts me all in. I have to call here. He outplayed me bad. He turns over his pocket tens.. and the Jack on the turn pulls my ass out of the fire. He was pissssed. He was still up a ton though. I now had a stack of around $140.
I get into a hand with the Chess Master that was a real head game. I look down and see pocket rockets and I raise the standard $15. I get called by Chess Master and the flop comes all low, fairly unconnected hands. He immediately starts taunting me. I bet out twenty on the flop. He is like "So, what card do you want to see?".. I point to the right one and he shows me the left which paired with on of the cards. He cold calls me. I bet out twenty again on a rag card. He raises me to $45. I think hard about it as he keeps taunting me. Telling me he has hit his draw. I cold call that bet. The river is a king. Here he does something that was a real poker move. I check the river on him and he pushes me in for my remaining $80. Now I know he has to put me on AK as a possible hand and the K on the river does not scare him at all. The board is pretty tame with one weird straight and possibly two pair somewhere. SO either he is pulling of a huge steal attempt or I am beat. I go into the tank and decide that I may be behind but I am calling. The bet just smells like a play. I had seen him push other people off of hands.. and to be honest, it was a brilliant poker move. He had over six hundred in chips and it only cost him another hundred. On the other hand if I lose this hand I am reaching into my pocket for my last bill. I finally make the agonizing call and I am right. I take a huge pot with AA vs a pair of sixes. Nice play. Made me respect the guy even more than before. Chess Master was a thinking player. I always respect that. I am not sure my call here was "the right" call.. but I made it and it worked out this time.
So I kept playing for a little while more.. Chess Master vowed to be in every pot I was in and to take my money. He was very aggravated when I gave any of it away to other people. I flopped another set against a guy with TPTK and actually won that one.. I lost a few hands here and there.
I watched Chess Master start his second rack of chips when he busted JesusAsian with a higher straight. It was wild. He had to have been sitting on 1K worth of chips. I enjoyed watching Anti-Santa blow through three or four buyins. I bet that hurts the ole teachers salary, ehh fat ass? I think I might have been a little hard on the guy. However that 4%'er hurt like hell. All in all it was a really fun game.
Alas it was not meant to be for me though. I easily could have been up five or six hundred in this game. If a few hands had gone differently. Of course I could have been down the same amount also. I ended the night after Sunday Night Football finished up. We all shook hands and wished each other good luck as I racked up and left.
I walked to my car at Midnight with a little profit of $140, about 1.5 buyins. I continued my un-beaten streak at live play which was nice. I am sure one of these days I am going to get smoked. Until then I am enjoying the run. I am still waiting for that one HUGE day when I just destroy the table. I was at one of the most difficult tables I had seen so far and I held my own. I mostly kept away from the good players.. and tried to punish the bad ones. I think one of these weeks I will have a night where I make 5-6 buyins or more. I have been very close a few times and either have made a few bad calls or gotten some nasty suckouts. I nice, solid, tight game plays well here. I look forward to doing well in the future.