What I'm Reading

Monday, March 05, 2007

Let's see...

...what have I been up to lately?

Updated the blog a bit. Added some new links. Let me know if there's some way to make it more aesthetically pleasing.

I didn't play much poker the past few days. I was stuck working the night shift, then went out of town to OU to see Girl Talk again.

I woke up this morning about ready to die, barely able to breathe because of the sea of mucus in my esophagus and two dozen or so pumas clawing at the back of my throat. I managed to clear my throat, grabbed my laptop, went back to bed and played cards for the first time in four days.

I sat down at a .25/.5 heads up table against a guy with 75 in front of him. 21 hands later, he was down to 15 and sat up. Fun times.

Here was a pretty interesting hand towards the end of that "session". At this point I'd been running him over, playing really aggressively and on the one hand I played passively, I cracked his TPTK with a straight.

themffulton is at seat 0 with $93.
GqBury is at seat 1 with $29.35.
themffulton posts the small blind of $.25.
GqBury posts the big blind of $.50.
themffulton: Kc Qs
GqBury: -- --

themffulton raises to $1.50. GqBury calls.

Standard so far.

Flop (board: Ah Ks 9c):
GqBury checks. themffulton checks.

Usually I'm going to value bet a hand like this, especially in a heads up game. But in this spot, I decided not to. I felt like he was too likely to check-raise with a worse king or a nine, as well as with an ace, and I didn't want to be forced off of my hand. Plus, this gives him a chance to catch up a little, because in all likelihood I am pretty far ahead here.

Turn (board: Ah Ks 9c 6c):

GqBury bets $3. themffulton calls.

I decided to just flat-call here. I figure this bet can be one of the following:

Hands beating me:
1) A set: possible, but unlikely. I think he's going to reraise preflop with a pair, especially how fast I'd played him.
2) Two pair: possible. It's not AK here for sure. It could be A9/A6/K9/K6/96. He was folding often enough preflop that I don't think K6/96 are in his range. Flat-calling against this is an obvious mistake.
3) Pair of aces: pretty possible. Again, flat-calling against this hand would be a mistake.

Something lucko has been trying to get through my thick skull lately is that when you have a decent hand (and 2nd pair TK is definitely decent) and you show weakness, do NOT let people take advantage of this weakness.

That, and I'm still ahead of the following:
1) A worse king: against this, he's got 3 outs to win, and 6 to chop. I'm more than willing to play this street slow in order to extract more from him on the river. Re-popping here will make a lot of the weaker kings to lay down.
2) A nine: same thing.
3) A six: probably going to be tough to extract value from this on the river, so letting a naked six draw for free is probably a much bigger mistake than the nine.
4) A draw that was picked up on the turn: should definitely raise these hands.
5) Air: might as well let him bluff off again on the river if he wants.

I'm pretty sure he's betting $3 with all of these hands.

Against the non-air range, I'm a slight dog.

equity win tie pots won pots tied
Hand 0: 48.272% 46.27% 02.00% 4927 213.00 { KcQs }
Hand 1: 51.728% 49.73% 02.00% 5295 213.00 { ATs-A2s, K6s+, QcJc, QcTc, Qc9c, Qc8c, JcTc, J9s, Jc8c, T9s, Tc8c, Tc7c, 98s, 9c7c, 87s, 8c6c, 76s, 7c5c, 65s, AJo-A2o, K8o+, Q9o, J9o, T9o, 98o, 87o, 76o, 65o }

I think that's a decent estimate of his range, but tough to tell after less than two dozen hands. Throw in some air, and I'm a slight favorite.

It's close, and while I don't want to let a draw get there for free (especially because if he hits a straight, I'm going to pay him off way too often, and probably a flush occasionally, especially for a small bet) I don't want to raise and/or build a huge pot with a decent but marginal holding.

So calling here has a few benefits:
1) Let's him bluff the river again. That's always fun.
2) Costs me less money if I'm already behind.
3) Dodges a reraise, whether it's for value or a bluff.
4) I have position on him on the next street. If he bets again, I can make a decision based on how much and what card. If he checks, I can go for a value bet or just knuckle behind, depending on the card.

The drawbacks to calling are pretty obvious:
1) Let's them draw for free(-ish)
2) Keeps me from getting full value on this street

The second part is a little interesting because as I mentioned earlier, I'm not necessarily losing value on the hand in its entirety because I can get another bet in from him on the river, whereas a raise might not be called.

River (board: Ah Ks 9c 6c 3h):
GqBury bets $9. themffulton calls.

Total blank hits. Assuming he always bluffs, getting 2-1 I have to call:

equity win tie pots won pots tied
Hand 0: 50.209% 48.95% 01.26% 117 3.00 { KcQs }
Hand 1: 49.791% 48.54% 01.26% 116 3.00 { ATs-A2s, K6s+, QcJc, QcTc, Qc9c, Qc8c, JcTc, J9s, Jc8c, T9s, Tc8c, Tc7c, 98s, 9c7c, 87s, 8c6c, 76s, 7c5c, 65s, AJo-A2o, K8o+, Q9o, J9o, T9o, 98o, 87o, 76o, 65o }

Of course, I don't think he's bluffing all of the time. But then again, he's probably not going to bet rag aces that hard either.

In any case, because the draws all missed, in addition to the fact that I could tell even in this short period of time, I had to have gotten under this guys skin, I opted to pay him off; if I had the best hand on the turn, I was definitely still good here.

So was he bluffing? Or more specifically, was he bluffing at least 1/3 of the time? I thought so.

GqBury shows 8c Tc.
GqBury has 8c Tc Ah Ks 9c: ace high.
themffulton shows Kc Qs.
themffulton has Kc Qs Ah Ks 9c: a pair of kings.

He sat up after this hand. I wonder how differently this hand should play out on both sides if it was towards the beginning of the session or if he wasn't stuck. I'm much more often betting the flop and ending the hand right there, but for the times that I happen to check the flop, I think his turn bets are still very similar. I think vs. these bets I have to raise more often because there will be less tilt-induced semi-bluff reraises I'll have to fold to. On the river, I am pretty sure his bet is a fold. I think he's probably bluffing a lot less than 33% of the time there. Whatever thoughts you all have in a spot like this (vs. an unknown opp) would be appreciated.

After this, I played some .5/1 with UrBluffingMe/xxIsleroxx and won a few more bucks, as I managed to win more than I would make in an entire day at work, before I got out of bed.


Chris said...

He wasn't drawing for free. It cost him $3. It's a little something I picked up on in limit. If they're betting and you're never folding, they have an effective fold equity of 0, so whether you put the bet in or they do, they pay for the next card.

Nicely done though.

NFulton said...

Yeah, that's why I wrote it as "free(-ish)". Logically, I realize he's not drawing for free at all, but the maniac-caveman-moron deep inside me who has watched too much poker on TV thinks that I should raise every bet.