Saturday, April 07, 2007

Fishing for fishies

The quest to hook the biggest fish continues, and I am trying to take full advantage of this long weekend to raise the count of helpless and hopeless crabstick fodder that I've yanked from the poker pools. There's nothing more satisfying than watching them flounder about and then plucking their probably hard-earned cash from their flimsy flippers.
As you move up the limits in whatever poker game you prefer, you will notice that some of the fish inevitably become a bit more wily and suspicious of the ever-present flashy hooks. They have been on the scene long enough to know what happens to their neighbours when they charge for the dangling worm, and won't be fooled by such obvious acts of entrapment. But, it makes no difference! They may pretend to be more clever, and less gullible, but believe me, when the chips are down they remain as scaled, flippered, and downright clueless as all the rest. They serve no purpose other than being sport for the professional angler, and I am more than willing to assume that role.
Here is a nice example of a fishy who thought he could get the best of me. I have removed my hand as it is largely irrelevant, but more so that can you can better imagine the fear my opponent must have had.

Hand #40567816-10710 at Gloucester (No Limit Hold'em)
Started at 06/Apr/07 12:59:48

Incrediboy is at seat 0 with $396.
00alias00 is at seat 1 with $661.
2outer OBV is at seat 2 with $487.
bigborys is at seat 3 with $1000.10.
alluneed is at seat 5 with $910.60.
The button is at seat 0.

00alias00 posts the small blind of $2.
2outer OBV posts the big blind of $4.

Incrediboy: ?? ??
00alias00: -- --
2outer OBV: -- --
bigborys: -- --
alluneed: -- --

bigborys calls. alluneed raises to $18. Incrediboy
calls. 00alias00 folds. 2outer OBV folds.
bigborys folds.

Flop (board: Ad Jd 4s):
alluneed bets $32. Incrediboy calls.

Turn (board: Ad Jd 4s Qs):
alluneed bets $35. Incrediboy raises to $90.
alluneed calls.

River (board: Ad Jd 4s Qs 7c):
alluneed checks. Incrediboy bets $185. alluneed
folds. Incrediboy is returned $185 (uncalled).

Hand #40567816-10710 Summary:
$2 is raked from a pot of $290.
Incrediboy wins $288.

So what did I have? Hopefully it looks like I had a monster and was looking for a call, but in fact until the river I had nothing but air. And the river did not give me anything to write home about. My hand in actual fact was 6d 7d. I won that pot with a pair of 7s, 6 kicker!!!

Please notice waiting until the turn to put in the raise. This has several benefits:
1) You can gauge strength by his turn bet (or lack thereof)
2) You win more money if your bluff proves successful
3) There are more apparent draws that can be completed (and then possibly bluffed) on the river
When my opponent checked the river, I knew that the pot was mine if I could size my bluff correctly. Too small and I would be getting a call which my hand obviously could not handle. Too large and it would look like a steal, which also might also elicit a call. With nearly 300 in the pot, I figured 150 would be a typical value bet from a strong non-nut hand, so I took it closer to 200 to look like I was feeling greedy. To his credit, he thought a long while before making his inevitable muck.
Would you recommend playing this any differently?
Later on, I was playing some 1-2 for a giggle and the following situation arose. Hope you laugh as much as I did! Sleep well dear reader, there are still plenty of fish in the sea....

Hand #40567683-59907 at Michigan City (No Limit Hold'em)
Started at 06/Apr/07 19:28:20

steel61 is at seat 0 with $910.35.
nlberns is at seat 1 with $224.95.
lsxintegrax94 is at seat 2 with $77.25.
kipu23 is at seat 3 with $139.90.
Incrediboy is at seat 4 with $156.30.
jazzy42 is at seat 5 with $310.10.
The button is at seat 4.

jazzy42 posts the small blind of $1.
steel61 posts the big blind of $2.

steel61: -- --
nlberns: -- --
lsxintegrax94: -- --
kipu23: -- --
Incrediboy: 4h 5h
jazzy42: -- --

nlberns folds. lsxintegrax94 raises to $7. kipu23
folds. Incrediboy calls. jazzy42 folds. steel61

Flop (board: Kd 5c 4s):
lsxintegrax94 goes all-in for $70.25. Incrediboy

Turn (board: Kd 5c 4s 9c):
(no action in this round)

River (board: Kd 5c 4s 9c Kc):
(no action in this round)

lsxintegrax94 shows Ac 2c.
lsxintegrax94 has Ac 2c 5c 9c Kc: flush, ace high.
Incrediboy mucks cards.
(Incrediboy has 4h 5h.)

Hand #40567683-59907 Summary:
$3 is raked from a pot of $157.50.
lsxintegrax94 wins $154.50 with flush, ace high.

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