Monday, August 27, 2012

Fold Dummy?

"And I feel like I'm naked in front of the crowd, cause these words are my diary, screaming out loud, and I know that you'll use them, however you want to..."  -Anna Nalick- (Breathe - 2 AM)

Good morning everyone.  From the instant that I heard those lyrics by Anna they connected, and they have become very relevant since I began writing this blog.  I'm saying this to inform you that today you're getting a poker post and you'll be getting your ramble on Wednesday.  I had an extremely disappointing finish in my freeroll tournament yesterday, and I'm hoping that if I type it out here right now, it will help me to release it - I need to remember it like a fire burning in the pit of my stomach, but I need to let it go also...

Yesterday I played in the Riviera's weekly freeroll tournament.  There were 28 of us and the top 10 would be receiving $250.00 each (unless we reached some sort of 'chop' agreement).  A chop occurs when there in an agreement among all of the remaining players in a tournament to divide the prize pool in a different way than was originally intended.  The tournament had no entry fee (i.e., freeroll).

After more than 2 hours of playing, we had reached the final 14 players, and after this hand the blinds were going to be raised to 3,000/6,000.  I would have about 5 hands left before all of my remaining chips would automatically go into the pot as the big blind.  The girl three seats to my right went all-in.  I looked down to see A J suited on my turn.  Although a few moments earlier I had decided that I would try to wait it out and see if I could backdoor a 10th place finish or a chop, A J suited looked very good compared to the hands that I had been seeing, and I was no longer sure if I could limp to the finish line.  I had seen this girl call a shove earlier with A 5.  I pushed my chips all-in from the button.  The big blind flipped up his pocket fives when he folded.  The girl said that she was happy to see that fold by him when she flipped over her pocket threes.  The board obviously didn't bail me out, so I lost the race and finished in 13th place.  Yes, somewhere in the past few minutes, another player had busted out from the other table.  Right after I got knocked out, the other table had another all-in, and the 12th place finisher busted out.  So now the tournament was going to its first break, with only ELEVEN players remaining, and ten scheduled to get paid.

I promptly left because I did not want to stick around and hear AT THAT MOMENT that the remaining players were going to chop the $2,500.00 prize pool eleven ways.  I would be surprised to hear that they did not chop it, and even if they did play on, could I have survived FOUR MORE HANDS?  I took the long walk out of the back of the Riviera and it wasn't until I closed the door of my vehicle that I YELLED 'the word' - it was unplanned and I was surprised at how loudly it reverberated in my closed vehicle.  I had played one hand in the second round of the tournament and got everyone to fold preflop.  I had shoved A J from the small blind, only to be called by A J from the big blind (we got our chips back after the board ran out).  I had shoved my A K suited after a shove from the player before me, who had shoved his Q Q.  The flop came A K 10, but no jack showed up to help him.  And I played this hand, A J suited, and lost this race to 3 3...  EXTREMELY FRUSTRATING to finish with $0.00 instead of $250.00 (or whatever chop they agreed to, if they did so)...  Second guessing myself, would I have lasted, would I have busted, would they have chopped the prize pool twelve ways if I had folded, even if that meant giving just a little bit of money to 11th and 12th places???  Earlier in the tourney, when the girl mentioned above had a big stack and faced an all-in from the short stack to my left, she folded A Q face up because she likes the guy (this was before she had crippled her stack with the A 5 call) - that hand will stick in my memory also...  "I would have called anyone else" she said...

Anyway, poker is a lot of fun...  I am bracing for this weekend, when the football games on my parlay cards will CERTAINLY be just as entertaining as the action at the poker table.  "The hardest way to make an easy living..." Doyle said - well said Mr. Brunson.  I hope that all of you have a great day and I'll see you again on Wednesday with my ramble.


  1. It's disappointing, but with essentially one big blind left in your stack you did absolutely nothing wrong to shove with A-J. I'd take that hand against 3-3 in that spot anytime.

    The thing in your post that would upset me more than anything else is the spot where the girl said she soft played another guy just because she liked him. In a tournament that is flat out collusion. I would argue it is technically cheating. Passing up the opportunity to eliminate or cripple a player has an effect on the results of every other player in the tournament. I get that you can't make a person call and if she had quietly folded face down nobody would be the wiser, but if she's dumb enough to say it out loud I think I might have asked the dealer or floor if that constituted collusion and merited a penalty.

  2. I appreciate your support, but it's no consolation right now - I keep thinking I should have waited because I already know the result of the hand. If A J beats the 3 3, this isn't a solemn post. Collusion was the word that immediately popped into my head when that hand happened - I don't know if anything would have been done because she could have claimed that she thought she was still behind with the A Q, although I did quote her accurately...

  3. No you suck dude. Do not listen to people who pat you on the hand and say you did good. It is not true. Here is my thinking. If you have AJ and are late and can really open shove it then go ahead.. but why call an earlier shove.. let a big stack bully keep her honest. I fold there all day long IMHO. You got in as a slight dog.. but it could have been far worse.

    I LOVE the idea of shoving hands but I hate the idea of calling off shoves in that spot. That is just me. BTW - I do not think you suck. :).

    Actually thinking about it I also hate the call because a big stack is behind you and he can call also.. you really want to bring your puny AJ to a 3-way fight?

    Just my thoughts on the play. I would be totally fine with you late shoving it if nobody had opened yet... totally hate calling a shove with it.

  4. My fear in hindsight (the reason I mentioned the guy with the 5's) is that he would have called and busted her if I had folded (her 3's didn't improve)...

  5. Forgive me, Waffles, but I disagree. I understand the value of being the aggressor and open shoving instead of calling, but he has effectively ONE BIG BLIND in his stack and will be forced to put it all in in just 5 hands. A-J is very likely to be the best hand he will see. I understand that this is different than a normal tournament since there is no difference between placing tenth or first so he just has to hang on for a few more spots, but I'd still rather decide what hand I take into battle than get forced to put it all in blind a few hands later.

  6. You called with a good hand, it didn't work. That's tournament poker.

    "I would have called anyone else" she said...


  7. I managed to scrape myself off the floor last night and played some 1/3 NL and some 2/4 limit (in 2 different rooms), and booked very small wins on my way to 2 more freerolls... The fact that the weekly football parlay cards are making their first appearance of the season today is some consolation... :)

  8. I just wanna play some poker dag nabbit!