KKing David

Ruminations on poker

Archive for the month “January, 2013”

What am I Doing Here?

This occurred about 2 minutes after the hand in the previous post.  I had opened up a new table and this was my first hand played there, also at $0.25 – 0.50 6-max NL.

I am the Big Blind with 9s 6s.

Everybody folds to the Small Blind, who raises to $1.50.  Since this is the first hand, I have no reads or data on his tendencies.  I should assume that he is being straightforward and has something with reasonable strength.  There is no reason to make assumptions otherwise based on non-existent data.

should fold.

should know better.  Maybe it is OK to call and then play a fit-or-fold approach on the flop, although that is clearly a -EV play.  At least it is lower variance than…

I call.

Flop ($3.00)  Js Kc 9c.  I caught the bottom end of it.  Surely I can outplay this unknown.

SB bets $3, playing right into my strategy.  (Who am I kidding?  I don’t have a strategy here, other than bullying my way through this hand.)

I raise to $7.50.  That should end it.  Not so big of a raise that it looks like I’m trying to push him off the pot, not so small that I look too timid.  SB calls.

Turn ($18.00)  Ks.  A perfect card for a second barrel.  I’m representing a K and this certainly helps.

SB checks and I bet $11, feeling a little bit of guilty pleasure over the anticipated pickup in just one hand here.  THEY…   WILL…   FEAR…   ME…   AT…   THIS…   TABLE!!!

SB calls again.  WTF?  Maybe he actually has a hand.

River ($40.00)  7s.  This changes nothing, other than my only option here is to continue the ruse which probably means I have to shove, or giving up.

SB checks.  I meekly check back.  He is acting like he’s not going anywhere.  Now this only smells like a trap.

He shows Kd Jc, for a flopped top 2 pair and turned full house.  Once again, getting involved in a blind vs. blind leveling war only backfires.

Who said:  “When you look around the table and can’t figure who is the biggest fish, you’re probably it”?

Year-to-date and month-to-date online results:  (- $851).  Running bad.  Running so so so bad.

You Must Be Kidding

Still running bad, so for a change of pace, I’ve switched from full ring games to 6-max, and dropped down to $0.25 – 0.50 blinds.  Also experimenting with Hold’em Indicator software and its HUD features.  Since I’m playing an a site where all players are anonymous, the stats can only be tracked for the current session and I have no cumulative reads on any of the regular players.

In this hand, I am the cutoff with As Js.  The player to my right limps in and I raise to $2.25 — a pot-sized raise.  The big blind and limper both call.

The flop is Ts 7d 4c.  Pretty raggedy.  I’ll probably make a continuation bet of about 60-70% of the pot if the other players both check.

Not so far KKing… Big blind takes about 5 seconds then shoves for $26 into a pot of $5.50.  Whoa there big fella!

Then the original limper over-shoves!

I’m outta here!

Big blind has 9d 8c for an open ended straight draw.

Limper has 7s 4s for bottom 2 pair.

The turn and river are 3s and 9s, which would have made a nut flush for me.

But no.  The limper, who limp/called with 7-4 suited, takes down a nearly $60 pot.

Running Bad

Opening lines from James Taylor’s You’ve Got a Friend:

“When you’re down and troubled and you need a helping hand
and nothing, whoa, nothing is going right.”

So true with the cards are running bad.

Recent examples:

Flop a set of 4’s and get all-in against a guy with pocket Queens for a pot of $410.  Another Queen hits on the river.


Get KK in the Big Blind in a $1/2 NL game.  Middle position raises to $6 and 2 callers.  I re-raise to $30 and MP calls.  Flop is 8-4-2 with two spades.  The other guy’s stack is not much bigger than the pot and I have him easily covered.  All the money goes in and he shows 8-8 for a flopped top set (and makes quads on the turn!).  Given the stack sizes, not sure I could ever get away from this one.


A-Q offsuit and the board is A-2-3-5 with two diamonds.  I have the Q of diamonds.  Get it all-in on the turn with a player who appears to have a flush draw.  He tanks, calls and indeed has 6d 5d, and I am 63% favorite. He hits the flush on the river.  Sucked out.

Right after that while I’m still tilted, I get a Q-high flop with K-Q off suit, and shove it all in to find out the Villain has flop a set of 8’s.  Whoops.  Tilted.


Limp in on the button after multiple limpers with 5-2 off suit.  (I know, I know…).  Flop is 4-4-2 and everybody checks (6 players).. Turn is another 2 and everybody checks again to me.  I bet 80% of pot and everybody folds except the cutoff.  River is a 6 of clubs, matching the 2c and 4c on the board.  But wait, I have the 5c so a straight flush is not possible.  Cutoff bombs out a pot-sized bet.  WTF?  After checking the flop and check-calling the turn?  I call and he shows 7-4 off suit.  Stupid to be in this hand in the first place, although V’s play made no sense at all.


I call a pre-flop raiser with QJ suited, in position.  Flop is J-9-x, he bets and I call.  Turn is Q and he bets and I shove.  He quickly calls and shows AA.  River is a 9.  Noooooooooooooo!  Suckout.


After taking all this abuse I finally get AA.  Time to make some $$ back!  I raise my standard amount and everybody folds.  I win the blinds.  Big hand / no action.

There’s more, but it hurts too much to keep typing.

If I can’t make it playing poker, I might have to start writing country music songs:

“No matter whether it’s Aces or Deuces

All the cards are totally useless

When I runnin’ Baa-aaa-ad

Worst time I’ve ever haa-aaa-ad!”

Year-to-date and month-to-date online results:  (- $466)

Haikus about Tilt

Tilting is so bad

Like free falling from the sky

To a hard landing.


I’m going on tilt

Again, again and again

I do not like it.


Watched the video

Tiltlessness is just bullshit

Cannot quite get there.


Why do I still play?

Winning, up!  Wait, now way down!

He sucks out; I tilt.


More self discipline

Don’t bluff and do fold when beat

Said but didn’t do.


Emotions run wild

When the cards are running bad

And burning money.


The pain is mental

But losses are financial

No wonder I tilt.


Year-to-date and month-to-date online results:  – $23

Trust Thy Reads

When discussing poker with my friends, one of the common themes that I bring up is trusting your reads.  This requires two things:  first you have to be decent at hand reading (or “structured hand analysis”); second you have to trust your reads and act on that trust.

Many recreational players will get involved in a clash of two big hands where the Villain goes all-in, and find themselves saying something like, “I know you’ve got me beat, but I have to see it anyway just to be sure.”  And of course, you end up paying off the Villain.

So this happened last night, playing $1/2 NL Hold’em online:

Villain ($201.75) – cutoff

Hero ($210.15) – button, holding Ts Tc.

Preflop:  UTG limps in and Villain raises to $8.  I call.  In retrospect, I’m not sure why I didn’t re-raise here, except for some concern about the UTG player slow playing a huge hand like AA or KK and coming back over the top.  But that’s irrelevant to today’s lesson.

Flop ($21) – Ad Th Kc:  Villain checks, and I bet $10.50.  I’ve flopped bottom set and need to bet for value.  If I’m going to have a chance to get his full stack, I need to start building the pot now.  Hopefully he has AK or AQ and can’t get away from it.

Now he check-raises to $29.  Hmmmm!  Could he have AA or KK?  QJ?  Or just a silly check-raise bluff?  I consider just calling, but decide to raise again to $59.  I still have about $160 behind, so if he ships it all in here I can fold and keep playing.  I cannot imagine another raise with a hand that is weaker than mine.

It should be noted that I know absolutely nothing about this Villain.  He’s only been at the table for 4 or 5 hands and hasn’t done anything weird.

He 4-bets to $119.

Time for some hand reading.  Really the only cards he can have are QJ, for a flopped straight.  His bet isn’t big enough to be an effort to push me off the pot.  He only has $75 behind, so he’s pot committed.  I know all the poker pros say that you have to put your opponents on a range of hands and not try to guess their exact cards, but in this case, I cannot see him betting this way even with AA or KK.  He has the nut straight.

I decide to fold.

Then I un-decide.  I don’t know what came over me.  I was thinking that if he has AA or KK, then I would only have one out in the deck, the last 10 to make quads.  But if he has QJ, which I am now quite sure of, then I have 7 outs on the turn and 10 outs on the river to make a full house or quads, which gives me about 35% equity in the hand.  (Note to self:  35% equity means you are BEHIND, NOT AHEAD, asshole!)

Some external force moves the mouse to the all-in button and clicks.  Villain calls and shows Qs Js and goes on to win a $405 pot.

Gotta trust your reads!

Year-to-date and month-to-date online results:  +$738


May I Un-fold? Ple-e-e-ease?

This happened last night at a private home game, playing $0.50 – 0.50 Pot Limit Hold’em.  Everyone started with $50 and I’ve played solid and now up to about $115.

It’s getting late and I’ve tightened up some, partly due to a past history of getting loose and spewy towards the end of a session in search of one last big pot.

In this hand Villain 1 has a slightly smaller stack, I’d guess around $80-90 and is in early position.  Villain 2 is even shorter, with about $35 and in the Big Blind.

V1 makes a pot-sized raise to $3, one caller, and I am in the cutoff with QTo.  I have a strong urge to call.  I really want to see a flop.  This has been a loose game and surely there will be at least one more caller for a good-sized multi-way pot.  On the other hand, this can be easily dominated.  There are multiple scenarios where I can end up putting more and more $$ in the pot and lose.  I could get a straight draw and miss.  I could get top pair and out-kicked.  I could get middle pair.

I convince myself – I think this is correct – to fold.

Button and BB both call, and the flop is Kc Jc 5h.  Open-ended straight draw, and also a flush draw on the board.

Everybody checks.  Dang!  I really want to be in this pot now.  Given my desire not to spew late in the session, I’m sure I would have taken the free card.

Turn ($12) – 9s.  Gin!

BB (V2) checks, V1 makes a pot-sized bet of $12 and everybody folds back to V2 who calls.

River ($36) – Ad.  Now I would have had the stone cold nuts.  I think I’m going to puke.

V2 checks and V1 asks how much he has remaining.  He has $20 and V1 bets that amount, with a quick call by V2 (with a deep sigh, as if recognizing he was beat and maybe he was ready to go home anyway).

V1 has 99 for a set of nines made on the turn.

V2 has AJo for two pair.

V1 says “I was hoping you didn’t have the QT for a straight but even if you did I wasn’t folding, and rakes in $76 pot.

I might have stacked them both.

Year-to-date & month-to-date online results:  + $543.  HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Post Navigation