Poker Season Session 3

Time to review this month’s poker night. This time we went back to the garage that started it all a year ago, only this time we had a few more players. Once again, the snacks were first rate, capped by an award winning shrimp soup. I love those shrimpies.

I came into this 3rd session of our season with some renewed focus. I’d been playing around with changing my style of play for the first two sessions and wasn’t being rewarded for it. The main personalities present at our table are loose agressive. Additionally, the way we have our blind increases structured, I’ve decided that trying to play a tighter, smarter game just doesn’t work. By the time you finally get an amazing starting hand, the price to see the hand play out pretty much puts your life in the game on the line. While I’d rather play a tight agressive style, it just hasn’t panned out.

So I went back to my old self, becoming the “Bully” once again. I picked up the nickname on our second time ever playing, because given a chip advantage I won’t allow anybody to limp in. They’d better be proud of their hand, because they’re going to pay to see a flop. People said I bullied them around. So there I was again, mucking around in pots with cards that no professional would be caught dead with. Game 1went about rather quietly for me. I couldn’t catch anything on the flops I saw. Midway through, I survived an all in by splitting the pot. A few hands later, I was history. After some down time eating soup and waiting for game 1 to end, we entered game 2.

Game 2, I faired much better. I was able to clean up on a couple big pots. But then I couldn’t get cards or luck. My chip pile slowly was dwindling, though still healthy. I got hot again, and entered heads up (the final 2) with probably an even number of chips. A phone call and some distracting chit chat just totally soiled my concentration. I got antse and made some stupid moves. I finished second, but was glad it was over.

Game 3 saw me going up and down in the chip count an amazing number of times. The ferris wheel finally ended with me finishing 3rd. I was knocked out at the same time as the 4th place finisher, but took 3rd because I started with more chips. I’m happy I got the points for 3rd, but was far from happy with my play. I made some of the stupidest decisions I have ever made in poker. I would make a stab at a pot, trying to bluff away the pot. But when I got called I just couldn’t fold it away as I should have. I had a few hands like that and really didn’t deserve 3rd place. But I’ll take it.

I started the final points game of the night on fire. I quickly became the big stack and stayed that way for most of the game. My biggest pot came when I went all in against two other players preflop. My pocket 9’s were up against pocket deuces and pocket 5’s. My 9’s would have held up but I caught another 9 on the flop for good measure and took the pot that was rightfully mine. We got down to four players left and I came upon a dry spell. After failing to knock out the two small stacks at the table, I saw my big stack dip into 2nd or 3rd. We finally knocked out the 4th place player after quite a while. I asked if anybody wanted to split the pot three ways. Of course, no one wanted to at that point. I finally started getting cards that I could do something with. After a winning hand where I paired jacks on the flop, and the next where I jacks in the hole, I knocked out the 3rd place finisher. I was now the big stack by a little bit, but I was really worn down and just ready to head home. I offered the split pot and it was accepted. When it comes to splitting pots at the end, I’m not proud. Unless I’m at a huge chip advantage, I’d rather just split 1st and 2nd place points and move on to the next game.

All in all, I’m very happy with how I played. I obviously need to tone down my aggressiveness a bit at times, but I can’t argue with the points I accumulated. A 2nd (36 points), 3rd (10 points), and a 2 way split (70 points) should put me at like 254 on the season which I think should be good enough for 2nd place I hope. I don’t have to win every game. As long as I can accumulate some points from multiple games each night, I’ll be happy. That should put me in a good position for the end of season final table.

One good thing, was my old nemises Unholy (read last months poker match) got no points, and a bonus, I knocked him out a couple of times. And that’s huge since he’s the points leader. Don’t get me wrong, these are all friendly games. We’re all extremely competative with each other, but at the end of the day, we’re all buddies. And Unholy is probably the one that I respect most in the poker aspect of things, so there’s definately no animosity when I rejoice in his eliminations. 🙂

Not really any hands that come to the surface of my mind this time around. The only thing that pops out was a hand that I didn’t even play in. During game 4, I had a Q-8 and had to go to the bathroom. 🙂 That’s normally a hand I wouldn’t have any problem playing, but it cost a lot to call and it just didn’t feel right. So I mucked the hand and went to the bathroom. When I got back, I saw that I would have ended up with a full house. I would have taken the hand no problem. The other knife in my back was the two other players with big stacks were betting like crazy, so it was a sizable pot. I usually try to forget what I have when I fold, but that hand made it tough.

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