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My Best Evening Playing Poker

It was a 12 player hold'em tournament with $5000 buy-in and no rebuy and the first 5 sharing the pot.  I finished 3rd but I could have won the whole damn thing if I hadn't folded on a hand (more on that one later) . 

The table I was at had 3 pretty good players and 2 hot shots who thought they knew what they were doing!  I love the first 5-6 hands of a game, that's when you find out who's on your level of playing... and who you can fleece!  So the first hour went well, I was second on chips after one of the idiots got kicked out on his 3rd hand  and another guy (Daniel from Ohio) lost too when my first memorable hand happened:

I got dealt Jc 10c with the flop 10h 7s 8h.  There was alot of betting this round and we ended up with about $1000 in the pot already and 3 players still in when we got dealt Jd. 

I wasn't feeling as good as I should have felt with my two pairs because of the straight threat.  I was planning to go conservative this round but Jake (from Long Beach) opened up with $500 and was raised $250 by... by that dude from Anaheim I forgot the name!  I called but Jake raised $500 to bring us at $1250 before the river!  The dude called and I did too after some deliberations... It felt like hardcore bluff to me.

Then came the river... Js!!!  FULL HOUSE!   Forget those lowlife straights!  Jake went in for a $1000, the dude went all in with $2100 (or something like that), I called then Jake did after what seemed like 5mins of thinking!  Gawd, that was painful... Trying to keep a straight face and not bounce in my seat .  And you know what??  They both had nines!  They sure looked dejected to lose to a girl with a straight in their hand!

So after that, I was at almost $22000 in chips, Jake had less than $500 left and Bill (a local) had $7000.  We played some more with 3 at the table (which isn't as much fun) and Jake got back up to $1000 before we had a break and were all put on the same table.  I was hoping my friend Dana would be there but she got kicked out at the other table so it was me and five guys.  I was 2nd in chips at the point with David in the lead. 

Play was pretty quick with nice chitchat and without any nasty or uncomfortable comments from anybody.  I didnt get much for the next hour or so and by the time we got down to four people (Jake bowed down 5th and got back his $2000), I was now 3rd in chips, with David (another local) at $36000 in a comfortable lead. 

The 2nd memorable hand of the night happened then:

I got 4s 9d and nobody seemed to have much as there was no raise before the flop Qd 9h 6h.  Bill dropped out at this point even though the betting wasnt that high so it was David, Assan & me when the turncard was drawn...  2c.  No straight possible, very low probability of heart flush, the hand was going to be a battle of pairs and I felt allright with my nines.  I bet $500 to start, David raised to $750 and Assan called.  I decided to go for it right then by betting $2000, hoping to either draw them both in or get the pot right there.   David called but Assan folded.  Fifth avenue gave us 3c and I was unsure of how to go at that point... What could Dave have? Should I start low and hope he raises... or open with a bang and see what he would do.  I made a median bet $800 and David raised $1700 to bring the wager at $2500!  He had just done to me what I had done at the turn!  I felt I was too far in already and that $2500 wasnt too much to gamble so I decided to call... and he had As 6s.  AH! my nines beat your sixes numbnut!!   That nice pot lifted me over Assan in chips with David not so far ahead anymore. 

Another half hour went by and Bill got kicked out on a bad bet hoping for a flush.  We took another 15mins break and it was then down to David $28000, me $16500 and Assan $15500 to battle it out. 

Somewhere around that time, Donna Harris (poker room director) came by which was very nice.  She gave us some drinks and chatted a bit.  She seems to know David pretty well... which probably explain why our rake was so low!!

Anyways, we kept playing (I was feeling great even though it had been over 3hrs we were at it.  It's so awesome since the Mirage made the rooms smoke-free!) and I then made a mistake on the biggest hand of the night:

I got 5s 7d with a flop of 5d Kh Ah.  David bet $1000 and Assan raised him $2000.  $3000 was too much for my cute lil pair of fives so I dropped.  David raised him again and the pot was $9500 already!   The turn brought 5h and David (who by then already had a flush) opened up with $4000!  After a long staring exchange, Assan decided to call!

And what did the river brings???  Five of Clubs!!  GOD ******* LORD!!! I would have four of a kind and grabbed it all if I had the guts to stay in!!! YOU DUMB STUPID FOOOOOOL!! 

David opened up with $4000 again and Assan put all his chips in!  a raise of $3000.   David barely thought about it and called, making a pot of $31500 (out a total of 60000 chips on the table)

As I already said, David had a flush of heart (with 10 & 7 I think) then Assan threw his cards in... .... Jack of Spade... & Ace of Clubs... FULL HOUSE to the Ace!!

Suddenly, Assan was way ahead with 31500, with me at 16000 and David knocked over at 12500 but I was pretty upset since that previous pot could have been mine.  The excitment level in the room went up after this and I didn't react too well.  The next two hands I lost $7000 on a stupid bet and a bad bluff. 

It took another 10-15 minutes before I got my exit ticket going all in with a pair of Jacks but Assan turned up three of a kind to kick me out of the game.  It didn't take long afterwards for Assan to finish off David and win.  

Afterwards, four of us: Assan, David, Jake (who had stayed to watch) & I, went to dinner (I had a spinach chicken salad that was too strong in lemon spice).   After Assan left, we sat at the bar and had a few drinks. All in all, it was a very enjoyable evening and I didnt get back to my room until almost 3AM. 

I was pretty happy about the guys in the tournament.  Since poker has become so popular, you have so many idiots and jerks playing the game but everyone I played with tonight was nice and professional in their demeanour. I might have barely made my money back but it was an awesome evening

AwkwardMoment AwkwardMoment 31-35 2 Responses Jun 20, 2008

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Excellent story. I love the details. Felt I was watching the game. Very nice narrative.<br />
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I completely agree with WL. Even if you had stayed in to see the 3rd 5, it would have been crazy to chase the 4th. The only thing you did wrong in this entire scenario was going on tilt for not having ESP. At least you cashed and made some good friends.<br />
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Well done.

Sounds like fun!<br />
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Your hand with the 75 offsuit was fine. With a hand like that you're hoping to hit a big flop, third pair is certainly no good against a bet and a raise, and a reraise as you correctly deduced you were third best on the flop with no draw to speak of.<br />
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In the fact the only way you could win was for the next two cards to be the two fives left in the deck.<br />
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So in fact, calling would have been a huge mistake, and you would have had to make another huge mistake to call again on the turn. Turns out you would've won the hand, but that's not much consolation if you play that badly.