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Daniel - Poker Journal

How Much Does the Guy with Aces Have Left?

06 Nov 2008


The plane ride over from Vegas was a good one for me. I flew private along with Howard Lederer, John Juanda, Eli Elezra, Chris Ferguson, Chau Giang, Andy Bloch, and David Levi which meant we could land right near Foxwoods which is SO much better than a connecting flight, then an hour long drive to the casino. It also helped that Chinese Poker was very good to me as I won 76k during the ride. As per our agreement, I (the big winner) had to pay for Howard's (the big loser) flight which was fine by me! I don't what it is about Chinese Poker, but lifetime, I run so good at that game it's incredible and I'm absolutely certain that I don't play perfectly. It just doesn't matter that much, the game is all luck if you have half a brain.

We all had dinner that night at the Chinese Restaurant and decided on a plan for the flight home. We tentatively scheduled a return on the night of day 3, unless 5 of the 8 players were eliminated by then. We assumed that most of us would make it through day one, but on hand #1 of the tournament, literally hand #1 Chau went broke on a sick, sick beat. He had Aces, as expected, his opponent had 10-10. The board read 9-6-5-2 on the turn and they were all in. 10 on the river, bye bye Chau Chau.
Soon after that I heard Eli went broke and based on the details of the hand he just gave his last 8000 in chips away. Howard and Andy also went broke, as did Juanda on the last hand of the night. That left me, David Levi, and Chris Ferguson who played at my table the whole day standing. I'm assuming I'll be booking a flight home, hopefully on the 12th!

It was a steady climb for me today. Focus at about 63%, patience at about 94%. I never really had any big things go wrong and avoided any situations where I might. I ended the day in great shape with 71,275 which is well above the average of about 50,000.

I did have one strange hand come up: I raise to 950 from under the gun with blinds at 200-400 with a 50 ante with Kc Jc. A nitty looking older local re-raised me to a total of 2000. A bad player called and I called tentatively, worried about the size of the re-raise and the type of player that raised. My plan was to try and hit big or go away.

The flop came J-6-6 rainbow with one club. I checked, the raiser bet 6000 and the other player folded. I knew that the bettor only had about 5000 left, but decided to try a bit of a ploy and said towards the dealer, "How many more chips does the guy with Aces have?" He then answered the question by saying 5000 more!
Here's where things get messy, though, as his body language didn't seem like it was all that strong. The tells I was picking up were bluffing tells, but when I compared that with the actual data it made the decision super tough:

1. Pre-flop raise size: AA
2. Bet Size on flop: Over pair
3: Comment: AA

That's what I needed to fade against my physical read. I finally decided to throw the hand away and held on to my 30,000. Risking 40% of my stack here seemed like a bad move. I felt like I made the right lay down for sure. Then at the end of the night, the guy follows me to the bathroom and says, "I didn't have aces that hand. I was bluffing, I had A-Q."

Yuk! He seemed like he was telling me the truth, but whatever, there is no way for me to know for sure. If he did have A-Q, he played the hand super bad, but then again, betting 6000 on the flop was pretty bad no matter what he had.

I made precisely ONE "play" today and it would have worked perfectly if my opponent didn't spike his miracle card to make two pair. I fired a bluff pre-flop, flop, and turn, and he was DEFINITELY folding the turn unless he caught help. Oh well, in the end I am left with my peak chip count.




Me and Chris same table

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