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Redemption for Free

As you know, it's been brutal for me these last few weeks. I played in a home game hosted by the lovely ladies at I Had Outs on Friday, and lost one buy-in in the $30 Rebuy tournament. I was card dead, but did not try to push the issue and resigned myself to folding and folding and folding. I made some plays after the rebuy period was over, but was eventually caught on a necessary all-in given the blinds (which was also a semi-steal) with KQo. Dawn was kind enough to call with AQo and relieve me of my chips. The cash game saw me losing $20, mostly to, well Dawn again. I couldn't stop bluffing into her pocket pair 9s. But, except for my two gaffs against Dawn (in the future, I will be more wary), my play was decent, given the opportunities presented to me.

On Saturday, I spent the day at a barbecue with family and friends. Partner-in-crime Dave Roose was there, and he suggested, jokingly, that we play some poker. I replied, seriously, that I had the chips and cards in my bag. We played three $5 three-person tournaments. I won one and broke even. The first game was between Roose, me and his father. I took that one down. The second and third were between Roose, me and his brother. His brother took those down. In both scenarios, Roose and my abilities far outshined the third player. But as we all know, luck is a part of the game, and Roose's brother was able to make the most of it.

When Sunday rolled around, I still was in a poker-comatose state. I had been avoiding the game (notwithstanding the tournaments at the BBQ, which were little more than a diversion), but I was also starting to feel that it was time to get back into it. Yes, one day without a significant game of poker leads to this type of thinking. Sad, isn't it.

After spending the day at the beach, wifey Kim and I returned home to relax. At 9pm, I had a freeroll at, which I originally started playing at because of a promotion. This is one of the other side-effects of VPP promos. Along with the cash bonus from the site (I'm halfway to $150 at Nine), and the gift bonus via VPP (I've already received my 750 points, and used them along with another 750 for a $100 iTunes giftcard), there are often first-depositor freerolls (along with VPP sponsored freerolls).

I started playing by warming up with some 2/4 Limit at Unfortunately, I lost my last $40 there, due, mostly to bad beats and cracked Aces. I then lost another $10 or so on and Stars playing PLO8. In other words, it felt like it was going to be another losing night, and I resigned myself to playing the $1000 freeroll and then calling it a night. To my surpsise, the freeroll only attracted 29 players...and the top 10 spots paid out. I started off strong, turning a nut flush in the first hand before pushing a player out of the pot with a re-raise. I had almost double my stack, but lost half of it on the very next hand when 33 cracked my QQ. From there, I played smart poker, picking my spots and playing tight. By the time we were down to 12 I was in decent shape with an average sized stack. And then it all slowed down. We must've been at 12 for 45 minutes. It sure as hell felt that way. I tightened up, happy to make the money (10th place was $20, and it went up by $10 for each place until you got near the top 4-5).

When tables combined and I knew I had locked in a win, I still kept pretty tight. There were some gamblers in the game, as well as a few big stacks, so it made sense to stay put and advance $10 at a time. Meanwhile, a player named MossMan (I appreciate the He-Man reference) was telling other players to "CALL" when players moved all-in. In one such hand, we were down to 9 players and a shortstack pushed from early position. I was probably 6th in chips, maybe 7th, and pushed on top with TT. So, when MossMan decided to coach the table, I took exception.

"How about you quit telling other players what to do, Moss?"
"Whatever, man. I can do what I want."
"It's called collusion, and it's against the rules."
"If I want to tell someone to call, I will."

I was steaming. Who the fuck was this guy? I understand in the heat of the moment saying "call". You want the game to end, you want to advance to higher money, and you don't think it will affect anything. But it does, even if it is on a minute scale. Another player, SWB, jumped to MossMan's defense, and by that time I had enough.

I clicked on LiveChat and asked the "floor" what they thought. Sadly, the guy was semi-clueless. He wasn't sure if what I described was collussion, but he did think that something seemed wrong with it. I didn't mean to be a snitch, but when money is on the line, keep your fucking trap shut. When I busted MossMan in 4th, I was super glad. I asked SWB what the deal was. Unlike Moss, SWB knew how to play a mean game of poker, which also suggested that he knew the rules. He told me that I was right, but not in a freeroll tournament. I replied, "It might be a freeroll, but it isn't free to the guy on the bubble."

My play excelled, and I eventually made it to the top 2. Heads-up was brutal. I was card dead, and SWB, my adversary, was aggressive. Eventually, I pushed with K9s. At that point, I had 7k with 1k/2k blinds. He had A2 and took down the tournament. Two freerolls, two 2nd place finishes.

For my trouble, I won $200! Even better, I won $200 worth of confidence. AC is coming this weekend, so I can use all the help I can get.

Now, it's back to the weekly grind. In the meanwhile, make mine poker!

posted by Jordan @ 10:07 AM,


At 2:13 PM, Blogger Eric a.k.a. Bone Daddy said...

Funny, I typically let my 9 year old son play my free rolls, maybe I should take them a little more serous. Congrats on the finish, and even better yet, busting a dickhead.

At 2:54 PM, Blogger HighOnPoker said...

I usually abhor freerolls and play terribly, but the prize pool was large enough and the money was good. Plus, I had been on a serious downward spiral, so I figured that I could use the freeroll as a way to really focus and see what I can do when my "life" is on the line. I'm glad to see I had good results. Now I'm hoping to parlay with some more success.

At 3:16 PM, Blogger Defend the Blinds said...

I'll play some of those middle-of-the-night freerolls if they have a good overlay i.e. use X amount of points to enter this $1000 freeroll. Sometimes the ones in the middle of the night have less than 100 people. I've cashed in those anytime I've been awake to play.


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