Monday, June 14, 2010

Finally! A few big hands to get things rolling!!!

It's about time!  I had such a good run Friday night - 8 buy ins!  Here are two monster pots that I had the benefit of being on the right side (for once in a LONG time):

Full Tilt Poker $0.25/$0.50 No Limit Hold'em - 9 players
The Official Hand History Converter

UTG+2: $50.75
MP1: $57.40
MP2: $17.50
CO: $17.00
BTN: $52.30
SB: $56.90
BB: $145.10 - 27 / 23 / 64% steal / 7.7% 3bet / 145 hands
Hero (UTG): $135.35

UTG+1: $48.25

Pre Flop: ($0.75) Hero is UTG with 4s 4d
Hero raises to $1.75, 7 folds, BB raises to $5, Hero calls $3.25
This guy has been 3 betting wide and shoving just as wide.  However, I'm not prepared to get stacks on the line with nearly 300 BBs - I feel this way even with AA, though I would be more inclined to re-pop it to $20 in this spot with AA.  However, I'm getting HUGE implied odds to set mine.

Flop: ($10.25) 3s 6d 5c (2 players)
BB bets $7, Hero calls $7
If I'm not going to flop a set, this is as good of a flop as can possibly be.  Open-ended, and regardless, I may very well be ahead.

Turn: ($24.25) 2s (2 players)
BB checks, Hero bets $15, BB calls $15
Bingo, but is he check / calling down now?

River: ($54.25) 8c (2 players)
BB checks, Hero bets $108.35 all in, BB requests TIME, BB calls $108.35
Clearly, I'm not going to be able to get it all in with a pot sized bet.  Why not try for overbet for value?  This guy is either calling or not, despite my bet.  This bet is HUGE and I realize that, but I think I show up with a lot more JJ, QQ type hands than sets in this spot, to a non-thinking player such as this.  I realize that he is not a fully aware player, and is willing to go to the mat with overpairs, but he just can't bring himself to release his hand.

Final Pot: $270.95
BB mucks Kc Ks
Hero shows 4s 4d (a straight, Six high)

Hero wins $267.95
(Rake: $3.00)

Same player, later in the night, at a different table:

Full Tilt Poker $0.25/$0.50 No Limit Hold'em - 7 players
The Official Hand History Converter

Hero (CO): $80.95

BTN: $38.20
SB: $16.45
BB: $67.00
UTG: $50.00
UTG+1: $111.45
MP: $50.00

Pre Flop: ($0.75) Hero is CO with 8d 8h
2 folds, MP requests TIME, MP raises to $1.50, Hero raises to $5, 3 folds, MP calls $3.50
Again, same propensity for going broke with hands, but raising wide, so I 3 bet in position

Flop: ($10.75) 8s 6c 9s (2 players)
MP checks, Hero bets $8, MP calls $8
Not the world's best flop, but pretty decent since I hit my set.

Turn: ($26.75) Jc (2 players)
MP checks, Hero bets $20, MP calls $20
And it keeps getting scarier.  At this point, I again put him on an overpair which he just can't rid of...

River: ($66.75) 5s (2 players)
MP checks, Hero bets $17, MP calls $17 all in
I think this is a pretty thin value bet; perhaps a check through is the better option, but I just can't put him on a spade draw where he checks the river on his made flush.  Moreover, I can't put him on a 7x hand where he checked his made straight.  Therefore, I go for stackage and it turns out to be correct.

Final Pot: $100.75
Hero shows 8d 8h (three of a kind, Eights)
MP mucks Tc Ts
Hero wins $97.75
(Rake: $3.00)

And finally, here's another hand, where I'm just dumbfounded by his calling off of 200BBs...  Just, WOW!

Full Tilt Poker $0.25/$0.50 No Limit Hold'em - 7 players
The Official Hand History Converter

SB: $52.25
BB: $99.10
UTG: $52.95
UTG+1: $95.30
MP: $50.75
Hero (CO): $140.70
BTN: $54.45

Pre Flop: ($0.75) Hero is CO with 6s 6h
3 folds, Hero raises to $1.75, 2 folds, BB raises to $5.75, Hero calls $4
Again, decent odds to set mine.

Flop: ($11.75) Qc 4h 6c (2 players)
BB bets $6.75, Hero raises to $18, BB raises to $55, Hero raises to $134.95 all in, BB calls $38.35 all in
He's signaled to me that he's happy with his hand.  Such a dry board, if he has a set of Queens, so be it, but I'm willing to go broke here.

Turn: ($198.45) Js (2 players - 2 are all in)

River: ($198.45) Qd (2 players - 2 are all in)

Final Pot: $198.45
BB shows Qh Ac (three of a kind, Queens) - TPTK stack off for 200 BBs...  Nice...
Hero shows 6s 6h (a full house, Sixes full of Queens)
Hero wins $195.45
(Rake: $3.00)


  1. I'm beginning to think that winrates in holdem are perfectly correlated to hitting sets (and getting away from villains who have hit sets).

    If I flop a set or two in a session, it's usually a huge session. If I stack off TPTK to someone who has flopped a set, then it's hard to recover from

  2. Matt-

    You're absolutely right. A thing I learned long ago [and was reinforced very strongly through Rush poker] was to make sure to not over-commit with weak hands. At this point, though I'm not a hound dog and still get stacked on occasion, I can usually sniff out set situations. I can usually sniff out set over set situations as well, though [obviously] I have a tough time releasing from those types of hands.

    The way I view it, there are stack-worthy hands (sets, 5-card hands [flushes, etc], and above) and all of the rest of the hands (2 pair, pair, etc.). I want to shy away from stacking off with hands like AK on a K high board - particularly when my opponent, who is a .8 AF, is trying to get stacks in.

    On the other hand, I am more than happy to get stacks in when I see a 40 / 30 (taking an extreme example) 3.2 AF trying to set up for stacks and has done it before with weak holdings.

    The best way of sniffing out sets (at least in my experience) is that setting up for stacks bets... usually pot pot pot. Not too many people are betting pot for 3 streets these days.

  3. @Matt,

    This is a function of the games becoming so nitty and players not willing to stack off light.

    PokerMeister and I have had this conversation several times in the past few months as we saw our winrates go from unbelieveable to questioning our own fundamentals.

    For instance, when you start having a conversation about folding sets on rainbow boards where you have 2nd or 3rd nuts. Never have I played a game, live or online, where I considered folding such a hand. Typically, your opponent will have overpairs, 2 pair combination, or open-enders with overs. Rarely will they be set-over-setting you.

    However, in Rush poker, it's rare for players to raise/shove over you without being at the top of their range or drawing very live.

    I should also note that people aren't stacking off pre-flop for 100BB's with KK when I have AA. In the early Rush poker days, nobody was ever getting away from KK pre-flop or pot-controlling all the way down, and probably rightfully so. That's how all of these 14/12's and 10/8's are playing now, which sucks because you really are just playing a game of coolers or hoping someone just spazzes, which is a very boring and tough way to make a few pennies.

    If you're thinking to yourself, "OK, well everyone is playing extremely nitty, shouldn't I play like a total LAG-box?" and the answer is probably yes. There are probably some players out there that are taking complete advantage of this. My issues with adopting this style are:

    1) Not my normal game; major adjustment required.

    2) Risking a lot to win a little means my bluffs, semi-bluffs, floats need to work a high-percentage of the time, or simply put, I need to have very strong non-showdown winnings.

    3) How long before the regs adopt to my style, playback at me, or always set the trap and pounce?

    Nothing is going to change the fact that players are overall better and there are a lot less fish. I suggest trying out some other non-rush games, for I feel that Rush has the least amount of dead money now-a-days.


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