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The Trip Solution



I was reading GCox's blog when I read this comment by TripJax:

  1. TripJax
    I saw something recently on TV where Lederer was explaining how to play with a big stack. He made a good point. When you are close to the money, be it a SNG or a MTT, it is better to play aggressive against the middle stacks than it is the short stacks. The shortstacks have nothing to lose, like you said, they are either all-in or fold. So when you raise it up against a short stack you are more likely to get an over the top all-in or immediate call if they have less since they have to make a move soon. But the medium stack just wants the small stack out so he can move up in the money so he is more likely to lay down medium hands that he might other wise play early or once in the money.

So, this got me thinking. THIS was what I did wrong yesterday. It wasn't so much my aggression. I think that was needed, given the excelling blinds. My error was in going after the short stack with the QcJc. If the guy in the BB wasn't such a small stack, he wouldn't have pushed with K9o, and I wouldn't have been pot-committed to call.

Let's look at a hand from yesterday's tourney that I was proud of. It was early and blinds were 25/50. I was UTG and limped with JhTh. I think all other players folded to Moshe, on the button, who bumped it up to 150. Now, I've played with Moshe before at Genoa. He was the guy I chopped 1st and 2nd with the first time I won there. He is a decent player, but I wouldn't go so far as to call him good. He likes to bluff and play position. One other player from Genoa was there on my right, and he was saying how he wanted to be on Moshe's left because he is so good. I agreed at the table, because I wanted Moshe to get a big head. His response, "You guys are giving me too much credit," with a shit-eating grin on his face. Good, he was primed.

SB and BB fold to his raise. I call. The flop is KT6, rainbow. I check. Moshe bets 300. I call. The turn is an 8. I check. Moshe checks. The river is a T. I check. Moshe checks. I show my trips and he shows his Ace high.

Now, Wonka, I know, I know. I should've bet there on the river. He would've folded though. I wanted to give him a chance to bluff out one last time. Moshe was shocked. "You played JT there?" "I know. I shouldn't have. I was thinking to myself fold, fold, fold, but my hand just reached for the chips." This was in actuality what happened. I told him the truth because I thought it would fuck with him more than any lie.

I don't know why I'm recapping that hand. I've been thinking about it. I think I played it exceptionally well. Pre-flop, was the call mathematically warranted? Probably not. Could I have gotten more money by betting or raising somewhere? Probably. But in the end, I kept my exposure down and I followed a read. I didn't follow it 100% because if I was wrong, I didn't want to be wrong for all of my chips. But I did follow it enough to get some chips.

Work has been nuts. Today I went to Court downtown, got to the office, worked for an hour, went to LI (1 hr train + 30 minutes to train + 30 minutes to my LI desitnation) for a deposition, and then came back to the office. I haven't gotten much substantive done since I got back.

I'm going to Seattle next week. My boss is sending me there on the 13th to attend a deposition on the 14th, afterwhich I am coming right back to NY to the firm holiday party. It will be a whole lot in a little amount of time. I'm overall excited. I plan on bringing the laptop and playing whenever/wherever I can. I'm sure I'll be able to play at night. I got word that I was not to rent a car, so my options will be limited. Too bad. I may just do it on my own dime so I can see the home of grunge music.

Tonight I return to Genoa (probably solo) to play in a $40+10 Freezeout. Yep. They abandoned the $25+5 originally planned. The weather here is bad, so I guess to get customers in they are having a garaunteed $500 first place tonight. The Sat and Sun tourneys will include $300 thrown into the prize pool. Damn that sounds good. I want in, but with my bday this weekend, I'm in heavy demand.

As for my birthday, I don't know what to think. I don't want to be one of those Birthdays-Suck people, but I do have a bit of...negativity about the whole thing. I just don't like the fuss. I want my family to join me for Sunday lunch. I want to hang with friends. But I don't want to have to choose a place, call everyone under the sun, and build this thing into something unnecessary. This is what is expected of me. I'm supposed to choose a bar and have everyone attend and make a fuss and I don't want to. I don't want to deal with disappointment and I don't know if I feel like doing what used to be standard. Is it so wrong to be an old fuddy-duddy and just want to have the people you are CLOSE with around you in a quiet setting. Shit, I'm only turning 26, but then again, I'm turning 26. It's not like I need a 21st birthday party bender. Not that there is anything wrong with that. And finally, is there anything so wrong with wanting to play an excessive amount of poker for my birthday? I thought not!

On that subject, two interesting things have happened recently. First, Resorts Casino in AC, which has a new-ish poker room, sent me free rooms, Mon-Thurs, up to FOUR times in January AND February. Very nice of them. Too bad I'll be lucky to use it twice. I'm going to try though.

Second, Cartoon Network, the namesake delivery service in Manhattan, was busted a couple of days ago. I was discussing this with Mama High and somehow the conversation turned to illegal card rooms in Manhattan. She was shocked that I play at those places, and was seriously concerned about my poker playing. I guess I should stop joking about this Lawyer thing being merely a way to ease into professional poker player. Jeezus Keerist!

That's all folks. Have a great weekend.

posted by Jordan @ 5:43 PM,

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