Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Some changes

The Foxwoods trip has inspired me to do some macro-level thinking about my poker life. I've decided to make some changes to the time allocation of my online and live play.

I've decided that I am burning myself out by trying to play too many hands of $3/$6 6max and 10max with very little medium term or long term gain. I plan to substantially substitute my playing time with single or double tabling $10/$20 9 or 10 max.
In parallel, I will generally play no more than 1 super satellite, MTT, or non-LHE game. In the non-LHE game category, I plan on playing $1/$2 or $2/$4 full table Omaha 8, Stud 8, 2-7TD, or Crazy Pineapple on Party and/or UB. I may also play some low limit Razz on FTP. If I'm not simultaneously playing LHE, I will probably 2-3 table the non-LHE games. The reason is that for games like Omaha 8 at low limits, my starting hand selection is so small that I'm playing so few hands, and time spent watching how low limit opponents play doesn't have substantial value.

This is my online plan substitution for the remainder of this month. I think this is a good choice for my continuing poker development. During periods of time that I don't feel like thinking or perhaps am on the tired side, I may grind out some $3/$6 hands at Party/UB/Carribean Sun.

In live play, I intend to completely drop $4/$8 Omaha 8 from the lineup. This 1/2 kill game is the highest stakes live regularly spread Omaha game that is conveniently available to me, but it is far too time-inefficient to play in.
Although to date, I have only played a grand total of 7 hours of live LHE above the $20/$40 level, I intend to substantially increase the % of my live ring game time in the $40/$80 game. $40/$80 may end up representing between 10-25% of my playing time with $20/$40 taking up the balance. I will be more disciplined with my time; if both the $40/$80 and $20/$40 games are bad, I will just go home and play online.

Given my bankroll, I do have a reasonable possibility of going broke playing in the $40/$80 game (lol, especially if I am a losing player). I think I am willing to permit my live bankroll to take a hit as high as 50% before I would be willing to cut $40/$80 from the line up. Naturally, if I feel that I am frequently outclassed, then I will also cut it sooner.

I've also decided that I need put more effort to think about hands played. I will start posting hands that I have any doubts or interesting thoughts on. On that line of thought, I'm going to post some hands from the Foxwoods trip.

some hand histories:

hand #1
live 10 handed $50/$100 LHE. This hand occured about 1 hour into the session, and I realistically expect that any of the players who pay any attention have pegged me as tight as I have been sitting out most hands. However, I have not made any particularly weak plays before this hand. I'm seated in MP, MP+1 is a tight agg player, MP+2 is a loose donkey, CO is tight passive, button is a smart aggressive player, SB has been a very tight preflop, very agg postflop player, BB is a weak tight player.
- preflop: folded to me in MP, I open raise with 6c6s (with a best case goal of stealing the blinds, and a second best case goal of seeing the flop headsup with donk), fold, donk calls, button three bets, blinds fold, I cap it (electing to represent a big pocket), both call. (3 players, 13.5 small bets)
- flop: Tc4h4d, I bet out immediately, donk folds, button quickly calls (2 players, 15.5 small bets)
- turn: Tc4h4d7h, I bet out immediately, button calls fairly quickly (2 players, 9.75 big bets)
- river: Tc4h4d7h2s, I check after thinking for 2 seconds, button bets after thinking for 3-4 seconds, I fold

Gawd, after writing this hand out, I almost want to puke because of how I played it.

Anyways, what hands can I put button on? 99, TT, JJ, are the likely better hands he could have, I believe I get raised on the flop with QQ (and of course KK and AA). The hand I am very suspicious about is AK. At the time of the hand, I had stupidly thought he would check behind with big slick. The more I think about it, when I check the river, he will almost always bet AK since there is a reasonable chance that I also have AK and there is virtually no chance he will scoop the pot in a showdown.
Are there any worse hands besides AK that he will call a turn bet with given the preflop action?
If I did put him on 99 (6 ways), TT ( 3 ways), JJ (6 ways), QQ (6 ways, but slightly scaled down because of no flop raise) and AK (16 ways), I'm assuming there is zero value in check raising the river given the pot size (in the hope that he would lay down 99)?

Probably if I am weak enough to cap it preflop 3 ways (and stupid enough to do so out of position), bet the flop and turn headsup, and then check/fold the river, I should have called the 3 bet preflop, check/folded the flop, and then went back down to $20/$40 after I had played up to my blinds.

hand #2
This hand falls in the "how can I win a bigger pot?" category.
live 8 handed $20/$40 LHE, I've only joined this table about 20 minutes earlier.
- preflop: fairly loose player limps UTG, folded to unclassified button who limps, unclassified SB completes, I raise for value w AhQh, all call (4 players, 8 small bets)
- flop: 2h5hTh, SB checks, I bet, UTG calls, button raises, (I see SB checking his cards, so I decide to do the same but at that time I forgot to watch if UTG did the same), SB calls, I call (assuming that button either has a baby flush or a set), UTG calls. (4 players, 16 small bets)
- turn: 2h5hThAd, SB checks, I bet (because I'm hoping that to get extra bets from UTG if he is drawing with any heart, and from the point of view of button, to represent the naked Ah who is stupidly betting into a better hand), UTG folds, button calls, SB folds (2 players, 10 big bets)
- river: 2h5hThAd5c, button looks visibly upset (which worries me as a reverse tell), I bet with the intention of calling a raise, button fairly quickly calls with his baby flush.

I suspect that button foolishly decided to slow play the turn, and then panicked on the river when the board paired.

Any thoughts on how to win a bigger pot here? (naturally I'm not talking about assuming I know what anyone actually had)

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