Saturday, June 24, 2006

Arch Enemy, Close Friend

More than likely, over the years, I’ve played more poker hands with G-Rob than anyone else.  Of anyone’s game, he knows mine better than anyone, and I like to think the same is true about his.  Together, we combat on several levels, each knowing many times what the other is thinking and knowing what the other will do given a certain action.  With his style being so aggressive he can often times put pressure on me and get me to lay down winning hands.  He’s done it before and will do so again.


For the first few hours at the Spring Hotel, I’d not played many big pots.  In fact, I hadn’t lost a showdown and had steadily taken down pots without showing many hands with continuation bets.  Some hands hit, some did not.  Nobody really had a firm grasp on what cards I was playing.


I heard the dreaded words, “last orbit” with a nod to G-Rob.  It was past midnight and we’d soon be heading home.  He had (yet again) pretty much run over the table and amassed a roughly $700 stack from his initial $200 buy-in.  Me?  I was nursing a small $100+ profit, hoping to squeak out of there with a win.  With about five hands to go, from middle position, I looked down at two red Kings.


A tight table image will get your raises respect.  Even still, with a limper ahead of me, I felt a raise to $12 was appropriate.  G-Rob called from the big blind as did the limper.  Three to a 256 flop with two clubs.  Right smack dab in G-Rob’s range.


Unsurprisingly, G-Rob would assume that the flop missed me entirely.  So he bet $30 into a similar sized pot.  Limper calls.  With two clubs, I know a call is wholly inappropriate, bad poker.  I raised $75 more to $105.

Enter G-Rob.


$100 more.


The donkey limper grew irritated.  G-Rob had played power poker against him all night, properly betting him off draws and what turned out to be eventually winning hands.  The guy was slow and slurred his speech, perhaps he was a bit intoxicated.  Or a bit dumb.  He asked G-Rob if he’d been ever slapped out of his seat.  Not that G-Rob needs my help in a fight, I still replied “Not with me sitting near him.”

Finally, the guy folded his obvious two clubs.

But what to put G-Rob on…


G-Rob had played AA the same way earlier in the night against Shep.  He knew I saw that, so he knows I might put him on a set because he doesn’t reraise with a high enough frequency without the goods.  If I put him on two-pair, I have more outs, but am still behind.  He also could have clubs.  I’ve seen him bet draws huge with a massive stack before, putting other people to the test and seeing them wilt.

Other possible holdings included overpairs.  But not Aces.  He reraises preflop with them from the blinds.  That I pretty much know.


I took off my iPod headphones and turned it off.  The table was quiet.  I had about $200 left and knew calling was folly.  Finally, not fully knowing what to put G-Rob on, I reraised all-in.  His range was simply too wide.


The look on his face told me I made the right decision.  But of course, given the pot, he had to call.

He had pocket Tens.  My adrenaline is still flowing, nearly an entire day later.

That was poker.

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