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Poker :: Another Final Table...
  submitted on April 19, 2007, 10:36 AM

At The Mookie last night, we had 69 (lol) players come out to donk it up. It's funny, before my poker hiatus earlier this year, I had never cashed in a blogger tournament, never final tabled won, I think my highest finish was 18th. So far, I've played 5 events in the BBT, and I've cashed/final tabled 3 of them, with two second place finishes to boot. While I'm sure some of my success is due to variance, as I haven't been sucked out on all that much, and have been getting decent cards, I really think the break I took did a lot for me mentally. I feel a lot more focused than I did before, and I think it shows in my play. I do need to work on avoiding situations that I'm not comfortable in, as they tend to be serious -EV plays for me.

Anyways, last night started with a fairly early double up for me when my pocket 8s turned into a set on the turn after a 10-high flop. An even better river paired the other ten giving me a boat, but also giving my opponent trip 10s. My time at the top of the leaderboard was not meant to last, however, when in two consecutive hands I went from about 3600 in chips to 1400. The first hand was against this pushmonkey who raised UTG, which I smooth called at UTG+1 with pocket 10s. Flop was 7-high, and Smokkee bet out, to which I re-raised. He didn't have many chips left and pushed and showed me his AK. He gets his K on the turn, doubles up through me, then immediately gets moved to another table and busts ten minutes later. Lovely. The very next hand, I'm in the BB with AK, the button raises, I re-raise, he pushes, and I have to call, and of course he just happens to have Kings. Again, lovely. From 1st to 35th in two hands.

Well, like I said, this all happened within the first hour, so I think the blinds were only at 40/80 or so by the time I got knocked back down, so I still had time to get something going again. Relatively quiet for the next hour or so, with me winning a pot here and there, and I managed to get back up to 2200 by the end of the second hour (I was at 2700, but limped in the last hand, only to have the SB raise it up and I called like an idiot with suited connectors that I immediately folded on the flop). After the break, I had to get into push mode, including a re-raise push with the hammer that went off without a hitch. I only had one caller in push mode, and that was when I pushed with A6, probably a bad move considering I was in fairly early position, and the BB called with AK. Fortunately the board two-paired itself and we split the pot. I finally got a double up from all this donkery later when I had aces in the SB. Action folded to me, and I simply called the BB. I noticed that the BB was fairly short-stacked, and if I feigned weakness by simply calling the blinds, he'd probably think he could take the pot down with a push. Fortunately that's exactly what happened, and my hand held up against his K7o. This got me up to around 5-6,000 in chips, and into the top 10 as we were down to 20-25 left. I didn't see many more good hands, but I tried to pick some good spots to play aggressive and raise it up preflop, and at one point I had jumped up to 11,000 in chips and was in 3rd overall.

I made a questionable call a little later on when there were about 6 or so at the table and I had KJ sooted UTG+1. I raised it up to 1800 or so (Don't remember the exact blinds at the time), and the button pushed, leaving me with 2,000 to call. Now, I figured I was behind, but I was also getting almost 3:1 odds, and we had had a lot of re-raise all-ins from the button lately to take down pots, so I felt his range was a little wider than usual. I ended up making the call, which may or may not have been a good play, I'm not sure. Of course luck was not with me, as he showed Jacks, and they held up, knocking me back down to 7,000 or so. That's pretty much where I stayed through to the final table, +/- a few thousand. My time at the FT was short, as I didn't have much in chips, and there were only two other stacks under 10,000. The money bubble burst pretty quickly as the 9th place person went out probably two or three hands in.

I busted in 8th on a questionable play by myself that again I'm not sure if it was the right play or not. I think the blinds at this point where 500/1000 with the antes at 150. This left my M at just under 3. I was UTG with KQo at an 8-handed table. I ended up pushing, and someone has aces and IGH. Maybe I should have folded since I was first to act, but at the same time I was worried that once the blinds hit me in the next two hands, I would be down to around 5,000, and my fold equity would be pretty compromised, which is the only reason I pushed. Maybe I should have just waited for a better opportunity.

I didn't care too much about the money, the $20 was nice and all, I was mostly concerned about my points. Miami Don is still going to be in first place, but I made up some ground on him, and I think I'll be in 3rd overall behind Don and ooooossssssssuuuuuuuuuuuu on the leaderboard, which I'm happy with. (EDIT: Actually, the leaderboard has been updated, and I am in third. I'd love to be able to break 400 points before next week, since I'll have to miss next week's MATH since I'll be at a Cubs game. It would also be cool to cash and break $1,000 win winnings, heh. Of course, all these expectations, I'm sure that means I'll donk out in the first 20 minutes tonight.

Just on a side note, I finally had a good (albeit short) cash session yesterday playing 50NL. I'd love to be able to move up to 100NL, but it's just not in the bankroll right now, and I need to get my play much more consistent before I even think about moving up. Still, it's nice to have a good session after some of the absolutely horrible plays I had been making over the past week or so.

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