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Poker Goals & Challenges Post your threads logging your travels up the poker ladder as you achieve your poker goals and dreams. "Challenges" does NOT mean prop bets, wagers, etc.

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Old 03-23-2014, 10:12 PM   #201
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

March 15 - "In order to live, you must be willing to die."

I've always remembered that quote from Amir Vahedi in the 2003 WSOP. That was one of the first poker broadcasts I watched when I was learning the game.

Anyway, I played the $175+25+5 tournament at Bally's Wild Wild West (11K overlay) and I was definitely on my A game. I ran my stack up to like 80K, which was probably a few times the average. I was running good but also making sick plays. Like I flopped bottom two pair with 45 on 845 and checked to the raiser intending to c/r. He checked, and a really loose-passive guy thought a bit, hollywooded and raised. Instantly I knew I had to lay it down. Then another guy jammed and I tanked a bit but knew I was in third place and folded. The loose-passive guy had 67 and the other guy had 88. Ironically, it was a similar flop that dealt me a big blow.

I had 80K and picked up top set with 88 on 874 and got it in vs 55 and he hit the 6. He said that's why he moved all-in, he knew he had the gutshot. Nice job, bud. That knocked me back down to 60K, which was still well above average. However, as the blinds went up, it didn't leave me room to maneuver and continue my LAG style so much. I was stuck in between re-steal mode and poker mode, and somewhat handcuffed.

When I was down to 5-10M I started really jamming wide, which is obviously pretty standard. I knew I had to be willing to bubble in order to maximize my EV, so I was, and I did. It's tough in live poker because everyone thinks you're insane and talks down to you and such, but they fold, so it's still clearly the right play. However, it totally trashes your image. Also, they all want to chop and think you're crazy for not chopping. How do people who play a lot of live tournaments deal with this? Like, you sense that 75-80% of the people despise you for not chopping, or not saving the buy-in for the couple of people who bubble. I was called a disgusting, despicable, heartless person for not wanting to save $200 for the people who finished like 9th-12th. I said I wanted a shot at almost 10K and didn't care if I bubbled.

I can't just say to them, "Well, you see, if I can double up here, I have a lot of equity to gain by putting your tournament life on the line since you greatly overvalue it and I can bully the bubble since you're all a bunch of live tourney donks."

So instead I went with the line about wanting to win almost 10K and not wanting to pull out of the prize pool.

Of course, I ended up bubbling. This annoying woman who was wasting tons of time, like literally she'd get dealt a hand. Wait for her turn. Act like she didn't know it was her turn, then when she was told, look at the clock. Shuffle her cards, look around the table, ponder the meaning of life, then look at the clock to see if she'd wasted about 20 seconds. Then she'd look. Then she'd shuffle her cards. Stare people down. Ponder her future, and mumble some strategy under her breath then talk some trash. "I'm coming back to win this, they don't see it, but I am. They don't know what they're up against. This is the best hand, but I'm going to lay it down. They're all crazy and this maniac will put me all-in, and so I'm going to lay down the best hand."

Then she'd sigh. Then she'd fold. It was incredibly annoying. So of course, after getting into it with her when she insulted my integrity for not wanting to chop, I bubbled and she went on to get down to a few people and chop. Apparently, the regs at Bally's say that's a daily routine for her and she cashes a high percentage of the time. It just shows how soft live tournaments are - people have to be GIVING chips away to a nit like that.

March 16 - “One day you’re up, next day you’re down. Long as you stay the same, it’ll come back around.”

I needed to get 10 hours in to qualify for the freeroll 3/25, so I set out to do just that. I only have notes on a couple hands.

I call a raise with JTo and the flop is TT5. He's been bluffing a lot and barrelling, so my plan is to let him do that. I check-call a large flop bet. Turn 6, same. River brick, same. He has 66. It's like a $450+ pot if I recall.

Then I flop trips on A33 and fire every street and it comes running four-flush and I have to check-fold the river. Then I pick off a bluff on the turn with a 5 high flush on a four flush board, and the river is the 6c. Check-check, chop the flush on the board. He tells me how lucky I was, because the last club scared him from firing and I wouldn't have called, so I stole his pot by sucking out. "Yeah buddy, you're the man," I say, or something sarcastic like that. I know I shouldn't, but he was being such a prick I couldn't help it.

End result, 10 hours and 10 minutes, -$388.

I'm now only two trip reports behind... Planning on playing Mon-Wed this week.
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Old 03-24-2014, 12:17 AM   #202
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

March 17 Ė ďThe grimy playas where Iím from donít wanna see you chipped up. / You shine, they goní jux you, and plot to shoot your whip up.Ē

This was my first cash session at Wild Wild West at Ballyís, and it went pretty poorly despite an awesome table. I didnít take notes on a lot of hands, but basically I either made second best hands or raised, got called by like 19 people and whiffed. One hand I tried to barrel a guy when an A hit the turn and he had floated with AQ on like an 8 high flop with no flush draw. The one thing is the room was very chaotic. It kind of felt like a backroom game, and I was a little uncomfortable with some of the characters. One dude was like out of his mind on, presumably, coke. Some of the others were taking shady phone calls and talking prices on stuff, so I wouldnít be surprised if they were drug dealers or something. One guy was calling a dealer trying to score something.

Basically, it reminded me of some games Iíve played in before where you had to be very careful when you leftÖ There were some dudes there that looked questionable, but they were being chill. There were others that seemed more like small time dealers and such, and those are the types that worry me more. That said, there was a ton of action and it was a Monday night, so that was promising. Itís also a buy-in of up to $500, which I took a shot at, but it didnít end well. I like being able to play deeper, though.

I will say, for this session I walked there from the Sheraton. Iíd never do that again late at night. The area between the two isnít bad, but the area on Pacific Ave right outside Ballyís isnít great, and it's questionable for about a block inland, and Iíd have some concern about someone in the game doing something or calling someone telling them I just left with a bunch of cash.

At any rate, that wasnít an issue on this night. In just under 4.5 hours I went -$830.
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Old 03-24-2014, 07:26 AM   #203
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Lol I wouldn't go near that room given the description you just gacs
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Old 03-24-2014, 12:21 PM   #204
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

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Lol I wouldn't go near that room given the description you just gacs
I'll give it a few more chances. The tourney wasn't like that and the cash game the next night wasn't... So I may have just randomly caught a crazy table.
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Old 03-24-2014, 02:19 PM   #205
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

March 18 - "Something 'bout the struggle so divine, / this sort of love is hard to define / when you scratching for every nickle and dime."

So I was back over at Ballyís Wild Wild West and this time I had a table with a much different vibe. I felt a lot more comfortable and safer, but unfortunately the table wasnít nearly as good. Most players were solid, and there were only like 2 or 3 other games running and we were the shortest, so a table change wasnít going to happen.

Early on I got involved in a really interesting hand. Iím in MP with A7. I raise to $10 and get three calls.

Flop ($40): AQ7

A woman donks out at me from the blinds for $25. I have a very specific read on her that I don't want to get into in detail here. I know that she has a made hand that she basically feels nutted with, or close to it. So I'm putting her on more than just an AK/AJ type hand. I flat call, and a young guy on my left calls.

Turn ($110): 4

She bets $50. I think for a bit. I still have the same read, and I decide to raise here since I picked up the diamonds. I make it $150, leaving $150 behind. The player on my left tanks for a while and folds. He's thinking so hard I'm not sure whether i want him to call or fold. The woman insta-calls.

River ($410): 5o

She bets $100, and I tank as to whether or not to raise or flat call. I decide to jam and she kinda shrugs and calls. She has Ah7h and we chop - I was freerolling the diamonds. The kid on my left is devastated - he folded AQ. So it turns out that my turn raise was brilliant, accidentally. I blasted him off the best hand and freerolled against the same two pair.

I have a note on this session that says "bad bluff A3," but I can't remember all of the details. Basically I had a good bluffing spot, and the villain had his hands over his stack and I thought he was like $200 deep and check-raised the flop for like $75 or something. Turned out he was like $85 deep and stuck it in, at which point I had to call with a gutshot and A draw (flop was like 258 or something), and I hit the A.

The same player then starts steaming and raising every pot to $17. It's my SB and he straddles. He's raised his straddle versus limpers two orbits in a row, so I decide if I pick up a big pair I'm going to limp the SB, expecting him to raise a high percentage of the time, and my re-raise will look like total BS. I wake up with KK with a few limpers and follow the plan. Before it gets to my steaming target, the player on my left that folded AQ before raises to $17. The steaming guy calls. It folds back to me and I make it $67. He tanks and shoves, steaming guy folds, I snap call and KK holds up versus QQ. The kid on my right says nice hand and whispers to me about what an awesome spot that is with the guy steaming - lots of equity. I agree, and internally bemoan the fact that I can't get a table change.

A little later I check the BB with 45o.

Flop (10-12ish): 845ss

I lead $7 and the steamed player calls.

Turn ($25ish): 2s

I think for a bit and decide I need to keep value betting because he is steamed and calling really wide. I bet $15. He checks his hole cards and calls. This is huge for me, because it tells me he's checking to see if he has one spade or not. Thus, if the spades brick, I can value bet again.

River ($55ish): 3

Not the greatest card, but not a spade. If he has like A8 he got there, or 56. But I think a lot of his hands are like 8x, and he's playing a wide range. I value bet $25, he snap calls and my hand is good.

However, when it was all said and done I went -$114 in about 4.5 hours. I remember raising and missing a few times, and getting drawn out on and making sick laydowns. I had a guy who had a flush draw spike a gutter on me and raise me on the river after he hit it, and I had a really strong physical read on him that he hit it. I called his hand (A2/A5 suited or something like that) and folded and he told me I was right, but didn't show. Didn't need him to.

So I've lost four sessions in a row, plus the tournament, or 5/6 plus the tournament.

Cash Stats

Hours: 218 hours, 50 minutes (not counting breaks)
Profit: $3,420
Hourly: $15.63 (a couple bucks higher cause of the breaks)

March: 61 hours, -588, -9.79/hr.
(Plus about 8 hours in tourney play, so for my volume goals I'm at 69 hours)

I'll be putting in some good hours today through Wednesday at the Borgata, and possibly next weekend at Delaware Park.
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Old 03-24-2014, 04:48 PM   #206
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

Hey, love this thread. I've been creeping around on it for a few days & finally finished it today. I was going to ask if you had been to the WWW yet when I finally finished reading your posts, but as I can see you just got in there this weekend. I'm curious if you've noticed any difference in the level of play here as opposed to the Borg. I have my reasons for thinking the TR casinos are on average going to have weaker players, but maybe that's not true. I'm pretty much in a similar situation to you, and am looking to do pretty much the same thing by getting out there as much as possible in the near future. I should be headed up to WWW tonight, and I pm'ed Dan to double check something I read in the WWW thread on here. He stated in the thread that if you give him 4+ hours of cash play on a Sun.-Thurs. he will comp you for a room that night if there are any available. Not sure if you knew this, but it could possibly help you in the future and lead to less sleeping in the van lol... Anyways, keep up the good work, and keep on grinding!
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Old 03-24-2014, 05:32 PM   #207
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Quote:
Originally Posted by special k View Post
Hey, love this thread. I've been creeping around on it for a few days & finally finished it today. I was going to ask if you had been to the WWW yet when I finally finished reading your posts, but as I can see you just got in there this weekend. I'm curious if you've noticed any difference in the level of play here as opposed to the Borg. I have my reasons for thinking the TR casinos are on average going to have weaker players, but maybe that's not true. I'm pretty much in a similar situation to you, and am looking to do pretty much the same thing by getting out there as much as possible in the near future. I should be headed up to WWW tonight, and I pm'ed Dan to double check something I read in the WWW thread on here. He stated in the thread that if you give him 4+ hours of cash play on a Sun.-Thurs. he will comp you for a room that night if there are any available. Not sure if you knew this, but it could possibly help you in the future and lead to less sleeping in the van lol... Anyways, keep up the good work, and keep on grinding!
Thanks! Glad you're enjoying it. I talked to Dan about a week ago and he confirmed the free weeknights, pending availability. I'm thinking I can stack up up a few nights at Borgata with a couple nights there and get out here for longer stretches of time. That's why I started splitting my play.

So far the sample size is too small to compare play in cash, but the tourney at WWW was insanely soft. Of course, I don't play the dailies or weeklies at the Borgata so I can't draw a direct comparison...

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Old 03-25-2014, 02:14 AM   #208
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

March 24 - "I search, but never find, hurt but never cry. / I work and forever try, but I'm cursed, so never mind. / And it's worse, but better times seem further and beyond."

Alright, time to snap this five session losing streak (and 6/7). I get into a decent, but not amazing, game at The Borgata and pretty quickly get stuck like $50. It's amazing how when you're running bad, -$50 feels stuck. When you're running good, it's barely even a slow start.

Some recreational player in a yamaka sits down. Now, I'm not a big believer in stereotyping - other than at the poker table. In fact, my best friend in high school was Jewish, my ex-girlfriend is Jewish, my best friend in college is Jewish and my second best friend in college is Jewish. Despite all of that, I've never seen a poker player in a yamaka who was good before, and tonight was probably not going to be the first time. Plus he showed up with his friend and they debated sitting at the same table, so that's strike two. He orders a Corona from the waitress. Swing and a miss, strike three.

He goes on to open way too wide and cbet way too wide, especially from EP. He makes it $15 up front, and a bad reg calls. The reg is an old Asian man with Bose headphones and a Rolex, two rings and a gold chain necklace with some sort of pendant. He's decent pre-flop but plays too many hands and then post-flop calls too light. I call the button with 45.

Flop ($45): Q43

Recreational yamaka guy bets $30. Old asian man with bling calls. This looks like a good spot to squeeze to me. Old asian man with bling's range is basically like K3+. I've seen him float with K2 on a similar flop with a deuce on it. He is rarely slow playing a big hand, and he doesn't have many hands he can call a raise with. Given that the kid in the yamaka is cbetting too wide, I decide to make a move here. I raise to $80. A little smaller than I might normally, but I think it's big enough to suffice and it leaves me like $150-$160 behind.

A brilliant plan for all of about .6 seconds, because quicker than you can say, "O.J. Simpson... not a Jew," in your best Adam Sandler impersonation, he jams for $110 more. Old Asian guy does his typical angry fold, and I briefly tank even though there's basically no way I'm calling, even getting 3 to 1. I then get berated by old Asian guy with bling. "I can't believe you raised and didn't call!"

Speaking of this old Asian guy with bling, when I sat down he was telling the story of some guy who stacked off with the sucker end of a straight, and berating the guy who was no longer there, saying he didn't see the higher one and he's an idiot and gave $500 away. He later plays a hand where the flop is T86. PFR bets, he calls. Turn 7. He bets, PFR raises, he calls. River 4. He checks, PFR bets, he moves all-in, PFR calls. He shows 55 and loses to the most obvious J9 ever. I knew as soon as the guy raised the turn what he had. Old Asian guy gets confused, "Wait, he has a straight? He rivered? No, wait? What?" I chuckle.

Later I raise KJo in MP to $12. I get one call in LP. It's an older black gentleman with pinkish/reddish glasses and a knit hat. He seems half decent, but calls down too wide.

Flop ($24): J46r

I bet $15, he calls. Time to take him to value town.

Turn ($52): 8

I bet $30. He counts out $30 behind his cards, then lines up a stack next to it of another $30. Then he adds $15 more on top and pushes out a raise to $75. What... the... f***? 57? J8? J6? J4? 88? 44? 66? I can't really come up with anything I can beat that he'd play this way, unless he's totally imploding with like QJ or JT, so I fold. I guess, in hindsight, he could do that with like QhJh or JhTh, but I still think it's a fold overall.

Perhaps the most difficult hand of the night... UTG raises to $12. He seems like a pretty normal semi-bad TAG. Might overvalue some hands, and I haven't seen him do anything that makes me think he's particularly good. It folds around and I pick up JJ on the button. I consider 3betting, but I don't want to be 4bet and he's UTG so I don't think it's a good spot for a 3bet. I decide to use my position and play the hand that way. I call. A blind calls.

Flop ($34): 367

Check, UTG bets $25. I'm playing $235 and he covers. I don't really like any option here. Folding is obviously weak and out of the question, I can't be set mining JJ here. Flatting is going to be gross on a really wide variety of turns, although if I give him a range of like TT+ and AK, flatting to turn my hand into a bluff on a lot of turns is an interesting play. I decide to raise for value and to charge club draws and make it $75. Blind folds and UTG asks me how much I'm playing. I raise my hands. He asks again. I say "I started with about $250." He keeps looking at me still wanting to know. Is this guy this bad at math? "I started with $250, so like $160 to $170."

Old Asian guy with bling chimes in "About $200." Now, this is the dumbest thing ever because he's two seats away and I clearly do not have two full stacks. He then says, "Maybe $170. $160." No s***, Sherlock, that's exactly what I said. Thanks for your wonderful contribution to the hand. (I kept that to myself). UTG calls.

Turn ($183): K

UTG checks. That's a pretty gross card. AcKc got there, it's going to be hard to get value from 88-TT, but if I check behind I'm giving a free card to AcXc, which could be a wide part of his range - maybe down to AT, maybe farther, I don't really know what his UTG raising range is because nothing has been shown down that would tip me off. I decide I need to just shove, and do that for $162. He counts out $162 pretty quickly, then counts out how much he'll have left if he calls and loses. I view this as a good sign, until he then immediately calls.

Me: "You have AK of clubs, right?"
Him: "Yeah."
Me: "You're good."
Him: "That's why I called." (in a semi smart-ass tone)

I miss my one outer, and reload. I raise, whiff, c-bet and fold to a turn bet and am down to $270 and take a break to eat. I return and run it up to like $360 by raising and c-betting with hands and taking it down on the flop or turn.

Then I pick up AA in LP and raise to $12. The guy next to me makes it $25 on the button. Beautiful, except he's only $70 deep total. Folds to me, I shove, he snaps, I cold decked KK. Wonderful. I'm running so bad that when I cold deck someone with AA over KK, he's got a whopping 35 big blinds in front of him. Yippee.

I run it up to about $520-$530, which means I'm only stuck like $370. Then, two EP limps and I make it $15 with AA. Folds around to the girl on my direct right who says "Heads up? Wanna chop it?" as she calls. I smile and say no.

Flop ($31): T63r

She checks, I bet $20. She says, "I might have to chase you down the whole way."

Turn ($70): T

She insta fires $50. I insta decide to fold, but first I stare at the ceiling for like 10 seconds in disbelief. I spend another 10 seconds tanking on whether or not to show her when I fold in order to try to induce her to show me her hand. I decide this is +EV and show her the aces then muck. She says, "Since you're nice," and shows me QsTs. I say nice hand and thanks, and she nods.

I play like 4 more hands til the blinds come around, rack up and leave. -$417 in 5 hours and 53 minutes.

Six straight losses counting the tournament, and 7/8 going back farther. That's a solid $2,400 downswing, which takes me down to $13.39 an hour, with the standard disclaimer that it doesn't count break time and is thus a couple dollars an hour higher. It's still half of what I was aiming for.

Tomorrow is the freeroll I qualified for, so maybe that'll help me pump up the bankroll a bit. First is $1200, but if I last long enough for people to want to chop I won't resist in a freeroll. Ultimately the house wants it to end in that scenario ASAP and I don't want to piss off dealers and floors in a place I play frequently.

Here are some pictures I forgot to post before. A chip stack from like 3/11, and a couple pictures from the Sheraton hotel room I had. Doesn't AC look totally different in the snow?





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Old 03-25-2014, 10:49 AM   #209
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

So I'm walking down to the poker room from my hotel room at like 10:15 and I'm thinking to myself... Man, it's a Tuesday and I'm chilling in the casino, ready to play some cards. Downswing or not, that's pretty sweet. They tried to say I wasn't on the list for the freeroll, but I said no, look again. There I was. We're in. I'm now crushing a breakfast sandwich and a lemonade, and in 15 minutes I'll be crushing freeroll dreams.

The starting stack will have ~5M after 1 hour, so it's going to take some luck and some very aggressive play. I'm hoping it's a bunch of OMCs who don't realize that and I can run them over. But, it's a freeroll, so who knows. Adapt, adjust and run good.
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Old 03-25-2014, 11:20 AM   #210
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I lasted five hands. KJ < QhTh all in on Jh5h3x. Then jammed 125, got called by a limper and two blinds and the dealer pulled 625 into the main and when I corrected him got real snotty and said "Let me do my job." I told him he was doing it wrong. Got the main pot fixed and he only had 225 in the side and tried to deal and I had to stop him and get the change back that he erroneously gave.

Won that, then next hand A2 < 69. Playing cash now.

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Old 03-25-2014, 07:51 PM   #211
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

March 25 - "This f***in job can't help him. / So I quit, y'all welcome."

I quit my job.
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Old 03-25-2014, 09:10 PM   #212
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

Big step. good luck bro. I'd love to hear more of your thought process, emotions around this. Looking forward to a more detailed post.

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Old 03-26-2014, 11:44 AM   #213
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

March 25 - "You just look 'em in the eyes, the whole stories right there. Everybody wears their hunger and their haunt, you know? You just gotta be honest about what can go on up here. A locked room." - Rust Cohle



Great scene - you can ignore the last sentence, though.

Well you already know I busted the freeroll in like five hands. I then lost $300 in the cash game in like an hour and 40 minutes. One hand annoys me when I properly read a guy as weak when he donked into a five way field from the BB on like QQX for $15 and it folded to me on the button, with just the SB behind. I made a raise to $45 with air and the SB made it $90. The BB said "I got caught," and insta mucked. Those are the types of things that happen when you are running bad - or maybe you just notice them more then.

So my downswing was up to $2,400ish, quite frustrating. Six straight losing cash sessions with the tourney mixed in. I haven't had a winning live session since March 10. I also quit my job - more on that to come.

So, when I say I worked my stack up to $450ish without any hands worth noting, that was a notable accomplishment in and of itself.

At one point, the player on my left (same kid form the AK vs JJ hand last night) is in a pot with what would be an OMC type player except that he's wearing a Puma track jacket and playing semi-aggressive.

Flop: 864. The old guy check-raises the kid, who calls.
Turn: 5. The old guy moves in for $200 into like $180ish.
I instantly put him on 75, and now he's terrified he's going ot get run down by like 89 or a set or something like that. He says "Aces are no good." The kid tanks for like 30-60 seconds and the old man repeats it.
Kid: "Two pair?"
Man: "Haha, you think I'm putting this in with two pair? No."
Kid: "Set of fours?"
Man: "You really think I'm moving in with just a set of fours? C'mon. They're no good."
Kid: "Really?"
Old man: "Yeah, I'll show."
Kid: "Show one now."
Old man instantly turns over a card without checking, and it's the 5h.
Kid: "I have top set."
Man: "It's no good."
Kid: "You want to show the other one?"
Man shows the 7h.
Kid picks up his 88, so that me and the guy on his left can see and proceeds to calculate the pot odds like 5 times and keep tanking even though it's not even close, then finally folds. The entire time he is doing this the old man is just holding up the 7h showing it to him. After he folds, the man explains that the pot was big enough.

Why can't anyone ever do that against me when they move in with a straight against my set?

Then I pick up AK in the CO and make it $12. The button flats. He's the same villain from above and from the AK vs JJ hand last night. His playing style seems the same... He has about $250 behind.

Flop ($24): JT9

I bet $15. He raises to $30 and comments about not wanting to play a big pot, then says,

"If you call, we can check it down." I just say no. I think for about 20-30 seconds and raise to $100. He thinks for about 10 seconds and calls, then asks, "Do you want to check it down?" I say no and the dealer tells him that's not allowed.

Turn ($222): 9

I think for a bit and move all-in for his last $150ish. He tanks, and tanks, and tanks.

"That nine doesn't scare you? Jacks full?"
"Tens full?"
"Aces? Did you flop top two pair? Ace-Jack? I can't even beat Ace-Jack."
"King Queen?"

He proceeds to name a bunch of hands that would all pretty much be in my range, none of which he can beat. So basically he has like KJ, QJ, etc. He's about to fold, then he stacks up all his chips and is about to call, then he's about to fold. At this point I really don't care. If he calls, I have 15-18 outs, and I'm putting in like 29% of the pot, so it's +EV to shove even if he always calls.

Finally he says, "F--- it, I call, you're good."

River ($522ish): 6s

Me "I am now," and I table it. He gets very upset and says I was beat, and I say, "I know." He shows me a T and mucks, and claims QT.

I run my stack up to over $750.

I've made big raises on the button and from the blinds versus limpers, and I've been running over the table in LP but I'm really just running good preflop - they don't know that though. A bad recreational player who calls too wide is starting to get fed up with it, and I can sense he's about to make his stand. He's one of a few limpers to my SB.

I have AJo and make it $16. BB calls, UTG (villain) calls, button calls. Villain has about $240.

Flop ($64): AQ7

I bet $40. BB calls after a little thought, UTG calls, button folds.

Turn ($180): 5

I think for a bit. BB's range includes club draws, a lot of AX and maybe like KhQh type hands. I also think he's capable of even folding AK if I fire big on the turn, because he's like $300 behind and won't want to play for stacks with one pair. If he calls or raises a big bet on the turn, I'm in really bad shape. If UTG does, I'm probably still okay. UTG has less than $200. I bet $130. BB thinks for like 20 seconds and folds. UTG goes into the tank, big time.

He's thinking so long and hard (he looks frustrated) that I am very confident I'm ahead. I think he's either on clubs trying to communicate subconsciously with the poker gods to find out if the flush is hitting, or he has a middle or weak ace and thinks I'm full of it but doesn't like calling $130 there. He tanks for maybe 90 seconds to 2 minutes and calls.

River ($440): 9:spades:

He has $52 left and I move all-in. He snap calls and shows Q9o to scoop $544. I say nice hand politely, and the guy in the BB tells me how lucky I am that he folded AK. I just shoot him a look like, yeah dude, I just got five outed for $544 on the river, I'm super lucky, but I don't say anything. He proceeds to berate the guy who sucked out for it, until the guy tightens it up.

Real nice job, buddy. He was running his mouth about being a 10/25 player just playing 1/2 because his wife was around and didn't like him playing high stakes... And he was pointing out all the people he thought were pros at the table, talking about how good he was. That's all ridiculous, but tolerable. Like yeah, dude, half the lineup in the 1/2 game is comprised of professionals. Berating the fish into tightening up after he spikes a 9 for a $550 pot is way the hell over the line.

Said fish proceeds to get it in with AA vs KK after a flop of K9X and spike the case A on the river (someone else announced they folded one). That gets him over $750. By the time it's all said and done he cashes out over $800.

Meanwhile I basically raise and cbet and take down pots until I'm back up to like $650-675. A TAG reg in EP raises to $8. I am on his direct left. He has been talking too much about odds and stuff, and tourney strategy, and I think he's good but not great. Basically I can steal some pots from him, and I can probably also get stacks in against him when I flop good and play it right. I just feel like I have a good enough hand to outplay him so I call with AJ. Two more calls.

Flop ($32) : AT8

He does not check his cards and bets $17. My gut says I'm good. I think a bit and feel like if he had a big hand without a spade he'd be stronger to protect it. I call. Everyone else folds.

Turn ($66): 8

He bets $30. I think a bit. It doesn't feel like a boat, the 8 can't really help him. I feel like if he had AK or AQ he'd slow down, unless he had the spade draw with it. It's possible, but less likely because he didn't check his hole cards. I am starting to really think he has KK or QQ with the spades. I call.

River ($126): 3

He pauses like five seconds and moves all-in for $101. I just stare at him. I got a pretty good look at him when he bet $100+ on the river with a set that he knew was good before, and catalogued that in my memory. There are key differences now, which I don't want to get into since he could very well be a 2p2er and stumble onto this. I stare at him for probably like 20 seconds, watching his eyes, and decide he does not have the flush or the full house.

Now I don't want to say I totally soul read him, but I ruled out monster hands. Given that his range is pretty polarized, that means I'm probably good. I don't think he value bets AK or AQ there, so he's likely turning a draw into a bluff or he flopped it. Ruling out the nuts or near nuts means I have to be good. I ask for a count. It's $101. I count it out, look at him, the read is the same. I push it forward to call.

"You're good," he says. I table AJ. "Nice call." He flashes me Qc9s and mucks and walks away.

That takes me up over $800. It's around there that the guy from the other Q9 hand gets up and leaves. The table breaks a little while later and I call it a night.

5.5 hours, +$504. Could've been a 1K night, but I snapped the losing streak, so I'll take it.
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Old 03-26-2014, 01:10 PM   #214
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Big step. good luck bro. I'd love to hear more of your thought process, emotions around this. Looking forward to a more detailed post.
Thanks man, appreciate it. I'll run through it in more detail tomorrow.

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Old 03-27-2014, 08:31 AM   #215
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If we're ever in a hand together and I flop the nuts, I'll show you I promise
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Old 03-27-2014, 08:32 AM   #216
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Also good read on his bet sizing in the last hand

No live player is betting half pot on a wet monotone board with any high value hand lol
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Old 03-27-2014, 12:15 PM   #217
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

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If we're ever in a hand together and I flop the nuts, I'll show you I promise
Sure - you mean after I call and suck out, right?

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Also good read on his bet sizing in the last hand

No live player is betting half pot on a wet monotone board with any high value hand lol
Thanks... Yeah, that combined with the physical read helped me make a tough call.

Yesterday's TR and job quitting TR coming soon guys!
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Old 03-27-2014, 02:45 PM   #218
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

March 27 Ė ďYo Iím making short term goals, when the weather folds, /
Just put away the leathers and put ice on the gold.Ē


I think the best way to try to snap out of a downswing is to just keep it simple, focus on making the right decision every time and ignore the rest. You arenít going to win back 8 buyins at once, but you can get a couple back, and you can do that a few sessions in a row and youíre back where you were.

I donít think I was playing poorly while downswinging, but itís still important to just tighten up a bit, and keep it simple. For a few sessions now, Iíve been tightening up in early position and making fewer moves. I also think quitting my job ironically took pressure off of me. The way I was treated there it was like a cloud over my head that is now gone. Iíll address that in separate post.

So I woke up to this viewÖ I still think itís weird seeing snow in AC, even though Iíve been there enough in the winter to see it a few times. Beach + Snow doesnít add up to me.



So I decided not to play at the Borgata because I didnít want to drag down my average session length by playing fewer than 10 hours again. Instead, I decided to aim for 4+ at WWW to continue building a record of play there to get rooms in advance. I also left the Borgata yesterday to quit my job, and thus had a 24-hour parking receipt that expired at like 6pm, which would be before I left, and I can get free parking at WWW. So that saves $5, which offsets the higher rake for an hour or two.

Best of all, I got to enjoy a wonderful omelet at Billís Gyro after a short walk on the boardwalk. It was cold, but it was a beautiful day.



Then, it was down to business. The games were good, a lot of action, some blind raises, very good table to be on. I had position on the biggest stack, but he turned out to be pretty tight. I had a bad TAG reg on my left and she was deep. Sheís probably a marginal winner, but she thinks sheís better than she is and in case anyone who knows her reads this, Iíll leave the strategy of why sheís bad out of it. Sheís also kind of scummy. She got reprimanded the day prior for going South, then was loudly complaining to a friend at another table about how dare they tell her not to take money off the table. So I saw her take like $40 off, and as she walked away asked the dealer if she was allowed to do that. He called the floor, they called her over and the dealer handled it poorly IMO. She asked who told on her, and the dealer didnít say anything so I said it was me and she then launched into a tirade. IMO the dealer should just say they noticed in those spots to minimize confrontations. I also wouldn't be shocked if he saw it in the first place and didn't say anything because she plays probably 5 days a week there.

She claimed it was only $26 and was to go eat and I was a horrible person because she had $900 on the table, and whatís $26. I wasnít going to make them go to the cameras, but I know she slipped her friend another $15-$25. I just said, well itís the rule and I know you know that.

On her left was a guy who was just kind of having fun gambling and he was making a lot of blind raises UTG from $12-$35. I considered getting position on him but decided having my SB be his UTG was better Ė it was easier to come over the top of him wider. This worked well early. I picked up AJ and made it $100 and he folded, picked up JJ and did it and he folded and asked if I was going to do that every time he blind raised and I replied, ďOnly when I have a good hand.Ē

The next time he made it $35 blind, I had Kd9d and it folded to me. He was like $100ish behind and I stuck $100 out again. BB folded and he called all-in blind. I bricked out and showed and he showed 34o, which had also missed. Ship it to king high.

Later I raised AQ in EP to $12. He called, along with two others.

Flop ($48): JTx7x

Two checks and I decided to bet at it, figuring I had at least 7 outs, plus I could turn a club draw or open ended straight. I bet $30. He called as did a blind. So I was done with it unless I got a dream turn card, likeÖ

Turn ($138): 9

The guy in the blind checked and I fired $100. Villain calls (200-250 behind), blind folds.

River ($338): Qx

I think for a bit and check, he checks behind and after I table AQ he shows A8 to take it. I donít think a river bluff would have worked, and I think I would have stacked him if I hit the K or the club.

So somewhere in between here and my next hands was when the girl went South and then left for dinner. During the 2 hours (no joke, maybe longer) she was gone, I got a seat change to the 4 seat. She was in the 1 and blind raise guy was in the 2, but he wasnít doing that as much. I was afraid sheíd anger 3-bet me a ton and I was deep after winning a couple pots and didnít want to be playing 3B pots out of position.

Meanwhile, I found a good bluffing spot that I canít remember on a paired board after floating the flop with a speculative hand. It checked on the turn and I fired $30 into $40 on the river feeling like I had a good image and nobody really had anything based on how it was played. Everyone insta mucked.

Later, after angry South-going girl returned, and I had just returned from a short break, I posted in the CO and there was a straddle put on. Normally Iíd pull back my post vs. a straddle, but I decided itíd be frowned upon by this lineup and I didnít want to look like a nit. A few calls and I have T4 and call the straddle. Nobody raises and itís six to the flop.

Flop ($24): Tx85

It checks to the girl and she bets $20. I raise to $80, it folds to her and she thinks for like five seconds and folds KK face up and says ďI know where you were at, I was just betting to see where I was at and I found outÖ Your set is good.Ē

I wanted to show her so bad, but I decided against it. Hereís a blurry image of the stackÖ



I played a little over 7 hours and cashed out $802, for a +$502 session. So Iíve dug my way out of about 1K of the 2.4K downswing. Not bad, Iíll take it.
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Old 03-27-2014, 04:24 PM   #219
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

I Quit My Job Redux Ė ďI quit, Iím retiring, aint enough money in THIS game, to keep me around.Ē

So basically I quit the only job that provides me with consistent income, but also the one that pays me the least per hour. The pay was actually less than minimum wage starting this year, and my boss acknowledged this when I went to him about it a couple of times but didnít change it. I was up for a raise and was supposed to find out in January, then February, then March, then April. Iíll spare details on that and some conflicting things I was told. Suffice it to say I was not well paid, and I was treated quite poorly in this position for a long period of time. I wonít air any more dirty laundry than that, though.

This job had me working four hours per day five days per week. Thus, it was the biggest impediment to getting other, better work, or playing poker. So after I got better work a day or two a week, this job made no sense unless I got a very big raise Ė and after waiting long enough to find out, I got sick of waiting and put in my notice.

It felt very liberating, although my heart was absolutely POUNDING before I went in to tell my boss. Part with excitement, because Iíve looked forward to doing this for a long, long, long time. Part with nervousness at how itíd go down.

I still have four jobs in the broadcasting industry. One is seasonal on eight different Sundays from September through December. One is seasonal on 20-25 random nights from November through early April. One is two weeks a year Ė Thanksgiving and Christmas. The other remaining position is 1-2 days a week year-round, and a shift there is 5 hours.

So basically, from April through August Iíll be working an average of 10 hours per week at a job and the rest of my time will be free. I intend to spend a lot of it on poker, and some of it on networking to try to open up new doors career wise. So in that sense, the plan remains the same. Advance my broadcasting career and my poker career as far as I can as fast as I can to give myself some difficult choices to make.

Now Iím just giving up some steady income in order to have way more time free to invest into my poker career and my broadcasting career. So in a way, Iím gambling on myself.

I wanted to quit like this:



But Iím not that good of a dancerÖ So then I had some other ideas that could have gone viral, but I didnít want to burn bridges, so I wrote a polite letter and hand delivered it with an explanation.

If you guys have other questions about it, feel free to fire away - I can't promise I'll answer them all, or answer them in the thread as opposed to PM. It just depends on whether it's something I feel okay about putting in public.
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Old 03-27-2014, 08:01 PM   #220
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9 isn't a dream card because of how well it connects with the board
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Old 03-27-2014, 09:18 PM   #221
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

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9 isn't a dream card because of how well it connects with the board
But short of turning broadway it gives me the most equity in the pot and makes my hand easiest to play. Plus, I don't think barreling is going to work all that often on a blank turn on that board - draws will continue and made hands probably will too. In fact, because of that, I should probably bet less - maybe $80.
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Old 03-27-2014, 09:20 PM   #222
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Some places allow paying for food out of your stack, not sure what the specific rules are there but if you don't have villain covered I would make a big fuss about it.

I think is actually better to post missed blinds when there is a straddle on, more dead money in the pot.

Congrats on dumping that gig that wouldn't even pay you minimum wage, **** that. I agree it is best to focus on fundamentals and playing abc when downswinging. Keep up the good work now you have more time to devote to poker and other worthy endeavors.
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Old 03-27-2014, 09:53 PM   #223
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

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Some places allow paying for food out of your stack, not sure what the specific rules are there but if you don't have villain covered I would make a big fuss about it.
I actually said to her if it was food ordered at the table that'd be one thing, but she was just walking away and didn't say anything and scooped up the money. Are there places that let you take it off to go eat elsewhere? Never seen that, but I've only played in a few places...

I didn't make a huge deal of it to her, I asked the dealer and she came back and flipped on me and I said I just said I saw it and that's the rule. I considered not addressing it because I didn't want to spoil the table, but I also know she plays there probably 5+ days a week because I've seen her every single time I've played, and I don't want her to be constantly going south. Just a bad spot to be in when you notice that. Her older friend also is constantly lurking by the table and I suspect that she scoops money off to her repeatedly. I don't think she likes playing deep.

Basically, she scooped ~$40 off, they walked away to talk, then I pointed it out to the dealer and suddenly it was $26 and it was to go to dinner - I think that's cause she got caught. I didn't have it covered - but I was one big pot away from having her covered and so were a few others. Basically she had $900, two people had like $600+ and I had like $700.

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I think is actually better to post missed blinds when there is a straddle on, more dead money in the pot.
That's an interesting thought - I think it depends who is straddling. People that like to straddle and pop it to $20-$30 I would say it's -EV to post there. In the right game, it can be good.

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Congrats on dumping that gig that wouldn't even pay you minimum wage, **** that. I agree it is best to focus on fundamentals and playing abc when downswinging. Keep up the good work now you have more time to devote to poker and other worthy endeavors.
Thanks... It felt so liberating, it sucks sometimes to be a slave to the business I'm in like that. Fortunately the other opportunities I have all pay better and are better opportunities and I'm working with better people, and devoting less time.

I'm definitely going to be devoting more time to improvement/studying, too. Any tips there?
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Old 03-28-2014, 09:44 AM   #224
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Re: 2014: I Ainít Trying to Survive, Iím Trying to Live it to The (No) Limit

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I'm definitely going to be devoting more time to improvement/studying, too. Any tips there?
Plenty of great free info in the strat sub forums. There are lots of great 2+2 books out there too. My personal favorites are NLH Theory and Practice and Professional NLH.

Working with a coach can be awesome but that is a much bigger financial investment.
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Old 03-28-2014, 10:10 AM   #225
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Plenty of great free info in the strat sub forums. There are lots of great 2+2 books out there too. My personal favorites are NLH Theory and Practice and Professional NLH.

Working with a coach can be awesome but that is a much bigger financial investment.
I own both of those books but haven't read them so that's already on my to do list for sure. Duke suggested Easy Game, so I'll check that out, and I already try to read the strategy forums a bit but I need to post more hands. Any anthology threads you specifically like?

In lieu of coaching I may try a video site, but I wonder how far that'd take me. Coaching may be something I'd do if I struggle at all as I move up in stakes.

I used to love to use the filters in my hand history database to plug leaks but obviously you can't do that live and online poker in Delaware doesn't let you save hand histories.

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