Thursday, August 02, 2007

Check it Down!

As part of this bankroll challenge, I said I wouldn't play any blogger tournaments until my bankroll was sufficient enough to play a SNG at the same buyin. However, I've been on a decent roll lately, and my bankroll was at the highest I've ever had it on FT. Plus, I knew the girlfriend was going to be away for a while. So I splurged and bought into the Mookie at the last moment. The allure of the new double stacks and a chance to significantly progress in my bankroll challenge was too much for me to deny. And I almost took the bitch down.

Well, kinda almost. With the cards I got, I should've.

An astounding 23 pocket pairs. AA once, KK five times, QQ three times, JJ three times. I had every PP except 55 & TT. Three times my pocket pair made a set, including a two outer against wwonka69 that doubled me up early. Most importantly, I got action on many of my big pairs and they held up each time. Except for the last one, when I ran JJ into lightning36's AA. As a result, I made my first Mookie final table and my first cash in a blogger game (I did take down the Dookie once, but personally, I don't count that).

Late in the game, a hand came up that I'm very curious to see what others feel about this. I'll keep the names anonymous out of respect for those involved, but suffice it to say that I completely disagree with how this hand was played and was quite upset afterwards. Here's the scenario: we're down to 10 players, maybe 11, and a shortstack goes all in. I call with KQo and one other person calls. I'll just let the rest of the hand speak for itself.

Full Tilt Poker Game #3128586678: The Mookie - Mikey Likes It (23768769), Table 7 - 500/1000 Ante 125 - No Limit Hold'em - 0:51:25 ET - 2007/08/02
Seat 1: mclarich (28,382)
Seat 4: Player A (32,050)
Seat 6: Player B (19,918)
Seat 7: Player C (16,227)
Seat 9: Player D (2,616)
mclarich antes 125
Player A antes 125
Player B antes 125
Player C antes 125
Player D antes 125
Player A posts the small blind of 500
Player B posts the big blind of 1,000
The button is in seat #1
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to mclarich [Qh Kc]
Player C folds
Player D raises to 2,491, and is all in
mclarich calls 2,491
Player A calls 1,991
Player B folds
*** FLOP *** [5d 2c Qs]
Player A bets 9,098
mclarich folds
Player A shows [Qc Jd]
Player D shows [Ad Qd]
Uncalled bet of 9,098 returned to Player A
*** TURN *** [5d 2c Qs] [5h]
*** RIVER *** [5d 2c Qs 5h] [Kh]
Player A shows two pair, Queens and Fives
Player D shows two pair, Queens and Fives
Player D wins the pot (9,098) with two pair, Queens and Fives

Obviously, this was a frustrating hand because I was bet out of a dry pot when, had it been checked down, I would have taken down the pot and eliminated a player on or near the bubble. Nevermind what I think though, I'm curious to know what others think about the following questions:

1. Was Player A correct in making that bet?
2. Would you call 1\3rd of your stack with top pair, 2nd kicker in this situation?
3. What type of hands do you bet with into a dry pot?

This situation has come up a couple of times, and each time I find myself laying down the best hand, only to see the bettor with not only an inferior hand than mine, but inferior to the all-in player's hand. In a MTT setting, I just can't comprehend the logic behind these bets. But I'm willing to accept that my view on these situations may be flawed, so I'm open to comments and suggestions.

Anyways, I had a blast playing the Mook last night. I don't think I'll be playing it again soon, as I really need to adhere to my bankroll challenge parameters. But, if I keep being a card rack like I was last night, my bankroll should be there in no time. As discouraging as it was to go out in 7th when I really felt like I had a solid chance to take it down, it is encouraging to get my first final table and my first cash in the Mookie.

Good luck to everyone in the freeroll tonight!


At August 2, 2007 at 12:27 PM, Blogger lightning36 said...

The criminal in question speaks ... lol

I would normally check it down to increase the chances that we would eliminate a player. I didn't for the following reasons:

1) We were still outside the bubble and had a lot of game left, so I was not concerned with eliminating the short stack who had a couple thousand chips.
2) Play had not been tight and you were being aggressive at the table. I believed that I had the best hand and wanted to grab a chunk of your stack. I was hoping that you would call with an inferior hand.
3) Believing I had the best hand, I was not going to check down and get rivered by someone catching an Ace or King to beat me.
4) Although I took a nasty beat with a two-outer (but later lucked out when dominated -- against you, right?), I felt like I was kicking ass and was going to take the sucker down. I was going all out for the win.

So ... you may not agree with the play, but I did have my reasons for doing it.

You played an excellent game and actually were the person who I kept my eyes on since you controlled a lot of the table action. That was why I wanted your stack in the worst way.

At August 2, 2007 at 12:36 PM, Blogger Alan aka RecessRampage said...

Ok, I was gonna say it depends on who but Lightning36 just outed himself. Quite frankly, that's a great bet. Matt, if I were you, I'd raise. But that's cuz I tend to be an aggro donkey. But, let's think about that for a sec.

A) Why did the villain bet at the dry pot? First of all, it's a good play, regardless of what he said to isolate the all in with his top pair. Why give someone else a chance to catch up. It's not like you're on the bubble of a satellite. There's no benefit in knocking out one more person here.

B) Why would I raise if he bet at the dry side pot? Cuz of two reasons. First off, I don't like being shoved off a hand just cuz it's a dry side pot. Especially if it's a dry side pot. It's like a personal challenge to me. Now of course, I won't do it without a hand but I want the opponent to know that I'm not gonna give in, even if it's a small pot and that every pot that I'm in, he better be ready to contest for it. So, if I had KQ, I would've raised for sure. Now, granted, if he has AQ, I'd have to get lucky to not go busto but if he had AQ, I'd have to assume he'd reraise to isolate the all in.

So, all in all, actually a great play by Lightning36. I know a lot of players complain about not checking down but there's no unwritten rule like that, again, unless it's bubble time or something.

Either way, nicely done!

At August 2, 2007 at 5:22 PM, Blogger Matt said...

Thanks for the comments guys. As Jules would say in Pulp Fiction, "well allow me to retort!"

First, lightning: As much as I feel you should check it down, I understand why you would think you had the best hand. Honestly, I'm probably just bothered by it because you got me to lay down the better hand. Bastard!

Alan, I did consider reraising for a moment, but in the amount of time I had to act, I had a feeling I was beat His bet size really threw me off, and this was a case where being 1st to act gave him the position of being the aggressor, and I wasn't in the mindframe to risk my stack on TP2K.

I also understand your point about the bubble, but it's been my style that when the bubble gets close, as it was in this situation, that a checkdown is the right play. Perhaps this is part of the explanation as to why I have no large MTT victories yet.

In the end, I just didn't think that either of us has enough chips at risk in the main pot that it warranted betting into on a made but beatable hand. Alas, it was one of the few moments last night where I wasn't the aggressor. Which leads me to my final comment:

An argument could be made that I should've reraised preflop to isolate the shortstack. At the time, I think I was so caught up on trying to make my first Mookie FT and cash that I just wanted the player our. Perhaps this is too much based on hindsight, but like I said, his range was so huge that it was probably worth it to reraise & isolate than to call and hope for a checkdown.

Thanks again for the comments!


Post a Comment

<< Home