Monday, December 31, 2007

Misplayed On All Streets

To close up the Vegas trip reports, I thought I'd go over the most unusual hand of the trip for your, my faithful reader's, enjoyment. My opinion of my own play here is suspect at best, but the hand was interesting to me on a certain level mainly because of how non-standard everyone's play was. Even my own.

It's post-blogger tourney time at the Venetian and I'm sitting at a 1/2NL table into the game for $300. I have a bit over $200 still in front when I'm dealt pocket Queens under the gun. So far, so good; it's an easy standard raise to $12. I got one caller in middle position and then the button, a bit to my dismay, re-raised.

Re-raises at Vegas 1/2 games are rare. They are very much indicative of two hands: AA and KK. But most times, the raise is a significant one where in you can really tell the strength of the re-raiser's hand. In this case, though, the button made it only $25. This is what I term mistake #1. Of course, I'm going to call and so will the middle position player.

Three to the flop: T44. I checked, at this point, almost ready to give up my hand to be honest. But let's see how the action went. The middle position player led the flop for $15 into a $78 pot. That's rather ridiculous in my opinion and shall be referred to as mistake #2. This is only a mistake however if he's not holding a 4. But this guy was a confirmed moron from watching his previous play, so I felt confident that he had perhaps a ten at best.

Now, here's where the complexion of the hand changed for me. The button raised. But it was a min-raise to $30. If I'm holding KK there in that spot, it's a horrible raise. You had two people call your pre-flop re-raise, so someone is conceivably holding Ace-X. You can't min-raise there, at least I don't think so.

I decided that I couldn't fold just yet, so I called. The middle position player called as well. I immediately took him off having a four. The turn was a nine and the action went once again, check-check.

The button then decided he's had enough, and moved all-in for $124. The pot was $168 at this point. I looked at the guy (because, hey, live tells rule) and asked him, "How big?" meaning how big was his pocket pair.

The dealer admonished me saying, "Sir, there's still a player left to act, you can't talk about the hand in play."

I responded with, "Yeah, but he's folding anyway." I was, of course right, but I did lean on the rules a bit with my table talk. But I got the answer I was looking for. THE tell. It's a tell I've seen just often enough and a tell that's been just reliable enough for me to make the decision to call.

Granted, I've played my hand horribly, never at any point announcing its strength. But my initial pre-flop range for the button really only included AA and KK, and then three things when added up together made me call.

1. His min-raise on the flop lead out from the guy in middle position. I took the button off KK right there.

2. The tell. It really is that reliable. It's one I'm almost going to keep to the grave because it's so good and has earned me so much money in a live environment.

3. The reality of the situation was that I was at a 1/2NL table in Vegas. Are you laying down QQ on a T449 board?

As predicted, after I called, the player in middle position folded. A harmless looking 2 hit the river. I had called my opponent, but he wasn't very eager to show his hand. I said to him, "Pocket Queens," in a meek, questioning way. He winced at the sight of them and tabled his hand. I had won.

Very unusually played hand on my part. One may even say poorly played. But it was one of my better "aggressive*" calls made on that Saturday to win back my blogger tournament entry fee and get my mood in a better place.

Anyone care to guess my opponents hand?

* 2+2 joke


BamBam said...

9-10 soooooted ?... Nah, not likely with the first raise. I'll guess A-10 sooooted and the initial raise was made to determine the strength of his opponents. Nah.... still not too likely even for a 1/2 Vegas game. I'll go with pocket Jacks and he figured you hit the 10.

Happy New Year fellow BB in spirit. I wish you nothing but the best for 08.

RaisingCayne said...

Shot in the dark... I'm with BamBam and assuming villain held JJ,... or MAYBE AceTen.


Julius_Goat said...

I guess AK

Pokerwolf said...

I'm saying JJ. Based on the fact that re-raises are "rare", I doubt the guy had the stones to re-raise with AT, especially since Blood raised UTG.

Pascale Soleil said...

The wince totally says JJ.

BadBlood said...

Good guessing commenting crew. JJ it was.

Anonymous said...

Who is the certified poker GENIUS who taught you the MEGA tell?

That guy is truly IMPRESSIVE!


Gydyon said...

So not cool to not share the tell with the blogger community. SO not cool.

Nice hand.

BamBam said...

If I grow up.....
However unlikely....
I want to be an anonymous G-Rob !