Tuesday, March 07, 2006

3/6/06 How Many Websites Do You Visit?

How many websites do you regularly visit? "A study in the UK found that 51% of surfers visit six or fewer websites on a regular basis." Which ones are on your list?

Barbara Streisand sez that prezidnt Bush is stoopid.

24 has to be the greatest show ever. I've never been hooked on a TV show before. I am now.

Poker talk for the week:

I entered a No Limit Tournament today. Almost 300 people played. But the rules and setup were a little different than you might be used to. It's $30 to enter. For $30 you get 300 in chips. When you sit down at the table, you can "re-buy" 600 more chips for $20. So, you're really in it for $50. Any time you are at or under 600 in chips, you can re-buy another 300 in chips for $10. Unlimited for the first hour. The play was loose and wild for the first hour. Blinds started at 10/15 and moved to 15/30 for the 2nd half hour. And I didn't pick up squat. Somehow I managed to get my stack from 900 to 1475 after the first hour without a re-buy.

To give you an idea of how loose the game was - there was one limper and a guy raised 4 times the big blind and got 3 callers. The flop came Q 3 3. After one small bet, the initial raiser pushes all in pretty big. The guy immediately to his right (who was the first person to call the big pre flop raise) calls. The first raiser shows KK. The next guy? 3 2. What's he doing calling a 4x raise with 3 2? I actually felt bad for the KK guy - busted out early simply because he couldn't get anybody to fold.

After the break, you could then "Add On" another 1000 chips for $20. Ok, so you're really in it for $70 total, despite the "$30 buy in" advertisement. Anyways, I felt like I played well, despite the marginal hands. I started level 3 with 2475 in chips (I bought 1900 of them). Blinds in level 3 were 25/50 and each level only lasted 15 minutes. For this and the following blind levels, I really didn't do anything of significance. I knew the table well though. I knew who was loose and who I was going to reraise all in once I picked up a monster. But no monster ever came.

The only semi-move I made was with pocket 8s. One limper to my left and I raise 4 times the big blind. The blinds (who know I'm tight, as are they. In fact, they talked to me about the loose players at the other end of the table during the break.) The guy to my right called, leaving himself with less chips than the pot. The flop comes A 2 2. He checks, I ask what he has left. He says 450. I represent the ace and bet out. He folds. I probably had him beat anyways.

Level 4 was 50/100. Nothing. The levels were going so quickly here. We got maybe a lap in for each level. Which forced you to make big decisions early. The problem is, I couldn't pick up anything to try and double up.

Level 5 - 50/100 with 25 ante. The antes are killer. Each lap would cost you 400 if you just folded. And each pot also had 400 before any betting happened. So you can no longer bet 3 times the big blind to scare anybody. If you raise to 300 pre flop, the big blind has to call 200 to try and win 700. So, it's a no brainer. Soon after level 5 began, our table was broken up. I never got to make my move. There were 4 guys I was eyeing. And the opportunity never came.

Not only did I lose my reads on my first table, but I lost my squeaky clean image. It would be much harder to make a huge bluff. So, my early raise with A 10 off didn't intimidate anybody. After a call and a reraise all in, I folded my A 10. And I was under 2000 in chips.

Level 6 - 100/200 with 50 ante. Now there's 800 in each pot before the betting begins. The chip leader was to my right and I was on the button. One limper and he raises to 800. There's 500 in antes, plus the limper for 200 and the blinds for 300. That's 1000 in chips. Plus the 800 bet (which appears just to be a bully steal). I look down at A 7. I had to make my move soon. So I made it here. I went all in for 1800. It really wasn't enough to push out the bully. He had to call 1000 more to win 3600. The fact that he hesitated so long made me feel like my hand was good. He had pocket twos. We raced and I won. Being up over 4000 made me feel like I could at least wait 1 lap before I made another move.

The entire tournament, I never picked up a pair bigger than 10s and didn't have an Ace bigger than AJ. As much as I believed I played really well, the game also requires cards.

So, onto my stand. I was down to 3200 after another lap. I was on the button and there were 2 limpers for 200. Including the blinds, that's 700 in bets plus 500 in antes. 1200 in the pot and I had 3200 left. I look down at A 10 on the button. One of the best pieces of poker advice I've ever received is "Don't get all your money in pre flop with A 10". Given the dire situation, I needed to take a stand. I could take down the pot right there or perhaps get a call with a smaller pair. Nobody was showing and strength and only the blinds were yet to act. So I pushed.

It folded around to the first limper. He pondered for maybe 5 seconds, then pushed his much bigger stack all in, hoping to get the 2nd limper to fold. Which is exactly what happened. I figured I was a either slight dog or a huge dog - Either he had a low/middle pair (slight dog) or I was dominated against a bigger ace. He turns over KQ. Which makes me a 3 to 2 favorite. A bunch of small cards come off - 7 2 6 3. Then the King on the river. The dude makes his big celebratory scream (which I'm very much opposed to, even when I'm on the winning end of a big hand). And I walk away pretty bummed out. I really thought I could make something happen with 7500+ in chips. Especially since I was finally learning the new table.

On a side note, I would have folded KQ offsuit when faced with a raise from 200 to 3200. He called with the worse hand. His stack was maybe 8000 at the time and it didn't seem worthwhile to me to risk more than 1/3 of all of his chips. And I really don't know how he wasn't worried that I had AK or AQ.

Also, the 3 times I played in that tournament, this is my worst placing. The first two times I played, I finished around 50th. This time I finished around 120 or so. And sadly, I was a far inferior poker player the first two times I played. Overall I feel good about my reads on my opponents and the decisions I made throughout the tournament. It just wasn't to be.

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