Monday, February 22, 2010


Boy, I never seem to do well online.  And it's usually the big pots that give me trouble.

Tonight, for my 'training', I first played two tables of 0.02/0.05 full table.  I basically broke even over 25 minutes, and the tables were super-tight, so I decided to switch to a single table of 6-max to work on aggression.

And I did work on aggression.  But I lost two big pots and never won a single big pot.

First decent pot I lost:

PokerStars No-Limit Hold'em, $0.05 BB (6 handed) - Poker-Stars Converter Tool from

SB ($5.85)
BB ($6.69)
UTG ($6.15)
Hero (MP) ($4.97)
CO ($5)
Button ($4.79)

Preflop: Hero is MP with 4, A
UTG calls $0.05, Hero calls $0.05, CO (poster) checks, 2 folds, BB checks

Flop: ($0.22) 2, 3, Q (4 players)
BB bets $0.15, 1 fold, Hero calls $0.15, 1 fold

This was a thin call, but there's a decent chance he has a queen, I have position, and an ace works for me on the river.  The gutshot and over is the only case where I'll make this call.

Turn: ($0.52) A (2 players)
BB checks, Hero bets $0.35, BB calls $0.35

Boom.  I hit it.  I put out a decent bet for value.

River: ($1.22) 8 (2 players)
BB bets $0.60, Hero ...

This was surprising.  I had to put him on two pair at this point, but it is hard to lay down top pair.  He also may be trying to do a blocking bet to prevent my bet, although half-pot is a big blocking bet.  Should I lay this down here?  He was a medium range player (not tight, not loose).

I ended up calling because I could beat a queen and I've seen players do stranger things. 

PokerStars No-Limit Hold'em, $0.05 BB (6 handed) - Poker-Stars Converter Tool from

SB ($5.68)
BB ($7.84)
UTG ($5.98)
Hero (MP) ($6.09)
CO ($5.17)
Button ($4.59)

Preflop: Hero is MP with 9, 9
UTG calls $0.05, Hero bets $0.20, 2 folds, SB raises to $0.70, 2 folds, Hero calls $0.50

This guy is the tightest player at the table, and always comes in raising, 18% VPIP, 13% PFR.  I called because I figured if I hit a 9 there was a good chance he'd stack off, and I was getting 2:1 plus another 10:1 implied odds.

Flop: ($1.50) J, 10, 2 (2 players)
SB bets $1, Hero calls $1

Yikes, I think this is where I started going wrong.  I initially figured I'd just fold on this flop, but then I decided that I should float one.  Uh... yeah, I don't think I have the odds to float one against a tight player.  6AA, 6KK, 6QQ, 3JJ, 16AK, 16 AQ...  maybe I'm ahead of about half his range (the AQ seems less likely), but I'm depending on him checking the turn.  I shouldn't have called, and it got me into trouble...

Turn: ($3.50) 8 (2 players)
SB bets $1.75, Hero calls $1.75

This was straight math, but bad math...  When he bet again, I figured he had the overpair... or worse. In that case, at best I have 8 outs, or just about the right odds.  But if he's got QQ, I only have 6 outs.  Actually, even with 8 outs I'm not getting the right price with implied odds.  But, for some reason, I did the math wrong and called.

River: ($7) Q (2 players)
SB bets $2.23 (All-In), Hero ...

Nice, I hit it!  But why did he push?  Maybe he has AK...  call.

Uh, yeah, he had AKo.  The river is pretty automatic though once I made the mistakes earlier in the hand. 

Ok, so, now I need to regroup.  Not a great night for me, but there's got to be a lesson here for me.  Let's see...

Recently, I've lost a number of large pots.  That could be bad luck.  The first was AQo where I hit top two but bet half my stack on the river when I didn't need to and lost to a set.  That was a hand-reading mistake plain and simple.  I lost a major pot by re-raising and calling a raise with a king high flush draw on the flop.  I lost a big pot with 99 when I floated against a super-tight player, called against odds on a draw, then hit my draw on the river but lost anyway.  I lost my stack at the $1 game when I overplayed a weak ace and attacked weakness.

I seem to lose my big pots when I'm making/doing big bets with weakish hands (one pair).  Maybe I need to look at slowing down more?

Well, I need to do goals for tomorrow night (the $.5/$1 game).  Here we go:

  1. Think through the hand from the beginning and come up with a range.  This is always on my list because I'm still not doing it.  Any time I'm presented with a bet over $10, make a plan!
  2. Do odds conservatively.  The 99 hand above was me clearly doing the odds wrong.  Try to convince myself that I don't have the odds instead of the other way around.
  3. Be aggressive from late position.  I feel like I've been doing better on this.
  4. Leave at 11 pm.  Seems silly, but this can save me a ton of money since I'll be up early in the morning and I know I play weak-tight-dumb when I'm tired.
The #1 thing on my list, hand ranging, is still not clicking with me.  I take the time, but I seem to get lazy and not think through actual hands in a range and miss things.  Maybe I need to just watch some poker and try it?  I'll do it tonight on some HSP and maybe try some hands on 2+2 tomorrow.

1 comment:

MicroRoller said...

In the 99 hand, I think there are some important stats you should have included in your decision making and post hand analysis.

flop aggr, cbet, fold cbet to raise, turn cbet and fold turn cbet to raise.

Unless you have 100's of hands against him they're not very accurate stats but I still find them useful.

2/3rds pot could be his normal cbet and your 9's might be ahead.

If you think he missed and you're going to continue with the hand either raise on the flop or float.

If you're going to float the flop though, when the turn blanks you have to raise him big enough so he doesn't have the right odds if you put him on a broadway draw. You either win the pot right there or you're faced with a raise which helps narrow his range.

If I'm willing to play a big pot with my hand I want to be the one controlling the action, even if the odds don't warrant it.

When you get to review the hand with all cards face up, raising the turn seems obvious to me. Too bad there are no do-overs :)

I'm still learning but those are my thoughts.