Thursday, June 03, 2010

What goes around comes around

Last Friday night I was playing at the Rio, sitting on about my starting stack of $300. I had a J-10 of diamonds on the button, so decided to call the under-the-gun raiser, whose stack was nearly identical. Flop was J-10-6, giving me top two pair. He bet $25. I raised to $75, largely because of the draw-heavy board (two hearts in addition to the obvious straight draw). He looked unhappy about it, but called. Turn was another 10, making my boat. He led out for $100. I moved all-in. He again looked not thrilled about the situation, but gave me the resigned shrug, and said, "I call." I showed my hand. He winced and turned over A-10. Looks like a double-up for moi. But don't count your chickens before they hatch. River: Ace. Bye-bye stack.

Tuesday night I was at Luxor, again with almost exactly my $300 starting stack. Under-the-gun player raises to $10. I'm next in line with A-A, and push it to $30. There are very few pre-flop reraises in this game, and the move practically turns my cards face-up, but I still thought it was the best choice, on balance, since this passive table could easily all call $10 and leave me in a very difficult predicament. Everybody folded to the small blind, who called. The UTG player moved all-in. Unfortunately, it was for $48--$2 less than would have been required to re-open the betting, so I could only call. BB called, also.

Flop was J-8-3. BB quickly grabbed a $100 stack and put it down in front of him. (He had me covered by a little bit.) This caught me off-guard. I didn't think he would call a reraise--especially from out of position--with 8-8 or 3-3. I also didn't think he would lead with J-J. He was a good enough player to realize the limited range with which I had put in the reraise before the flop, so surely he would expect me to make a substantial c-bet if he checked to me, and, given the stack sizes, I'd be pot-committed. Therefore, if he had flopped a set, I'd think that the check-raise would be the better play. This line of reasoning made me conclude that he most likely had Q-Q or K-K, and was making this bet to take the pot if I had A-K (it seemed possible that he hadn't done the math to realize that I couldn't raise again pre-flop after the UTG shove, and on that basis decided that I might have only A-K instead of a big pair), or find out if he should get away from it if I shoved, on the assumption that this would mean he could be fairly certain I had aces.

So I shoved. He called immediately. I showed the aces. He showed 8-8. Oops. I don't know exactly what his thinking was, but I had misread the situation somehow. But I had little time to stew about it. Two seconds later, we both saw the dealer give me a fourth-street ace-ball, and that was that.

It's pretty uncommon that I win or lose $300 in a single hand. When it happens, it's really, really rare that the outcome is decided, either way, on the basis of somebody hitting one of just two or three possible winning cards after all the money is in the middle. But I guess that this week the universe decided that it should set things right on the first three-outer by giving me the second one.


matt tag said...

we had aces vs. kings twice in our home game last night - both times all in preflop - both times the kings hit their 2 outer to win. Good times.

I got aces cracked by a runner-runner flush as well.

No pocket aces survived showdown last night.

The Poker Meister said...

You're not playing enough online poker if its uncommon to see 2- or 3- outters.