Wednesday, June 09, 2004

Less Cheese, More Meat

Ok, enough with the blathering and on with the poker content....

The writings of many of the bloggers out there (most linked to the right) inspired me to try my hand at a no-limit ring game. Buying in for $25 wouldn't kill me and the thought of the extra ammunition to prevent river card suckouts intrigued me.

I bought into a short-handed ring game figuring that I could get a bit more creative with my starting hands. This was especially true at this table where it appeared that most people would simply limp into a hand and hope for the best. Many times a $2 raise on the .50 BB would bring folds all around.

During many initial hands, an opening raise and a bet representing top pair post-flop would be enough to win the pot right there. My assessment of this table was weak passive.

Believe it or not, I limped in twice with A,4 off only to find 2 4's on each of those flops. A bit of slow-playing them didn't bring any draws and I managed to double up once and win a decent sized pot the second time.

A few hands later, I'm dealt 8,7 spades and raise it to $2. I get two callers. The flop is 2,4,7 and I bet out. Nobody is going to put me on this hand, however, one of the pre-flop callers folds. The turn is another 7 and I bet out $4. The remaining player raises me over the top for $10. All-in baby. He calls and I double up again.

I cashed out my first session with $96 and felt pretty darn good. I then spent some quality time with the wife watching a TiVo'd "The Young and the Restless." Did I just admit that? It's not sad that I watch the show, it's sad that I enjoy it....

Anyway, I decide to play a bit longer afterwards at another $25 no-limit table. Not much really comes my way as far as starting cards go. Holding A,K with an A on the flop lets me bet out a pot-sized bet. I'm raised by one caller who I suspect also has A,X. I'm a bit worried that he's got 2-pair right now as the flop brought A,2,4 and he simply called my pre-flop raise. He ends up putting me all-in and I call. We split the pot with both of us holding A,K.

I'm next dealt 10,7 in the BB and see a flop for free. The flop is 3,9,10 and I of course bet out. I'm called by another player and the turn brings a 10. I bet out and am called again. The river is a 9 giving me a very strong hand, 9,9 being the only hand that beats me. I bet out $5 and the other player folds. I'm greeted to a "nh" by Pauly. Always nice to have someone watch me win. A truly rare occasion :)

So we'll see where I go from here. The no-limit games were fun for a change of pace. I can only play one table at a time as the subtleties of no-limit play are greater and my attention must be fully focused on the table in order to do well.

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