Monday, October 27, 2008

Metal Monday

There's some poker in here somewhere....honest.

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If all goes well, I'll throw out a metal recommendation each Monday for the 3 people who read this blog and care about that genre.

I was listening to the latest Arch Enemy on iTunes yesterday and for some reason decided to pay attention to the Genius sidebar. Now, I was relatively confident that I have their entire catalogue, so when I saw a song title called "Walk In The Shadows" I grew curious. That name didn't ring a bell. At least not initially.

I listened to the snippet.

And then I clicked "purchase."

Some of you will recognize that title, as the song I bought is a cover of the classic Queensryche song from when Queensryche was actually very good. It's from their Rage For Order disc which is an underated classic in and of itself.

So that's my recommendation for the week. Take it for what it's worth. Ninety-nine cents on iTunes.

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This past weekend I had some success playing the 8-game mix over on PokerStars. What's interesting to me is comparing how each game is played "in the mix" against how it's played at a table where that's your only option. For those unaware, 8-game mix is Limit 2-7 Triple Draw, H.O.R.S.E, NLHE, and PLO.

It was during a round of PLO that this hand came up. I was in the big blind holding KKxx facing a raise and two calls. My Kings were not suited and my backup cards were rainbow rags. It's not a very good hand in PLO especially in early position. But with the 2 callers behind the original raiser, and with me closing off the action, I decided to call. I was playing for set value only.

The flop came down Q-high with two spades. I whiffed. I checked, planning to fold to a continuation bet, especially since one of my two King outs would complete a flush draw. Interestingly, it was checked around.

Of course, the turn was the King of spades, giving me top set on a board with 3 spades. Again, in PLO against 3 opponents, this is nearly a loser 100% of the time. I checked again.

When it got back to the pre-flop raiser, he placed a small bet, perhaps 1/2 the pot. Here is the difference between playing PLO at an 8-game mix table vs. a strict PLO table. A player with significant experience would never make that bet because if he has a flush, then anyone with a set (like myself in this case) has sufficient pot odds to boat up. I had 10 outs with 44 unknown cards, a 3.4:1 chance of making a fullhouse.

So I called, figuring to fold to a check-raise by the two remaining players in the pot. However, they both folded and now I was heads up with the pre-flop raiser. The river brought a Jack, which didn't pair the board.

Again I checked. I'm advertising to the other player that my hand is no good. At no point in this hand did I show any aggression. At a normal 1/2 PLO table, the pre-flop raiser fires a bet on the river regardless of what hand he has. The situation is so entirely bluffable that he should know I cannot call a pot-sized bet here.

Fortunately for me, the player checked behind and I won with my set. He simply had AAxx and got outdrawn. He played the hand very passively which is entirely expected at a table where PLO is just not your main game.

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I've basically come to the realization that I'm not going to ever be the "best" at any one game, online or live. My profits normally come from other people's mistakes and me making fewer of them myself. The times I'm going to "outplay" someone are few and far between, especially with the skill level evening out over time.

They used to say Chip Reese's greatest asset was that his D-game was so close to his A-game. While he may not have had the best A-game, he made all his money when his opponents' games slid below their best. My hope is that I'll make some money online when my competancies in the 8-game mix is on average higher than some of the specialists out there.

5 comments:

BamBam said...

Well, now there's a reason to look forward to Monday's.

:)

pokerpeaker said...

I've basically come to the realization that I'm not going to ever be the "best" at any one game, online or live. My profits normally come from other people's mistakes and me making fewer of them myself. The times I'm going to "outplay" someone are few and far between, especially with the skill level evening out over time.


Well said. I, too, have come to that realization, meaning I only play $100 NL on the weekends, Friday and Saturday. The tables just suck otherwise. I win too much on those days to throw it away the other days. I'll still play poker on other days, but it's razz, low limit NLHE or tournaments with the blogging folk.

Heather said...

They used to say Chip Reese's greatest asset was that his D-game was so close to his A-game. While he may not have had the best A-game, he made all his money when his opponents' games slid below their best.

I'm pretty sure this is why I LOVE HORSE and would rather it even be ORSE :)

FOOTBALL MAN said...

I like your blogs, looking forward to your future updates.

StB said...

Great! Now I have Geoff Tate screaming in my head!

Your checking call in the PLO also could indicate you made your flush and you were looking to maximize the value by letting him bluff again on the river.

I call it getting Bayned.