Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Life’s a Bluff

BluffingHad a couple of funny hands come up day before yesterday at my usual PLO game ($25 max.). Funny for me, anyway. (Warning -- brag post coming. Or self-implicating donkey post -- you decide.)

On the first, I was in the cutoff holding 5h4h9d8h. The player under the gun raised pot to $0.85, and it folded to me. I called, the button folded, and both blinds called as well. Pot $3.25 (after rake). The flop came Ah6s7s. Both blinds checked, and the preflop raiser without hesitation raised pot.

Now I hadn’t seen this fella raise before the flop a single time in the sixty-odd hands I’d played with him, and his very quick flop raise with an ace on board signalled pretty loudly what he had.

The flop was fairly intriguing for me, too, of course. There were something like 14 cards that would give me a nut straight (any 3, 4, 5, or 10), plus six more that would give me a less-than-nut straight (any 8 or 9). Of course, I had to eliminate six of those as “outs” because of the possible flush.

There was enough there to keep me interested, though, so I called the bet, and was relieved to see both blinds fold. Pot $9.45. The turn was the Qd, and again the UTG player quickly bet pot. I’m realizing now that not only do I have my straight outs, but it might not be too bad if a spade were to come on the end, either, as my opponent clearly seems worried about that prospect. I called, making the pot $28 or so, and sure enough the river was the 2s. My opponent instantly checked.

I had $15.90 left. I’d missed all my draws, but was almost 100% sure my opponent was sitting there with a set of aces and no flush. I was somewhat less sure, though, whether he’d fold his set.

That’s a big problem in these low stakes games, of course. This seemed a great place to bluff -- a bet would be a most reasonable conclusion to the “story” I’d been telling (that I was a flush-chasing dummy with little appreciation of pot odds). But would he be able to follow that story? Or even if he did, would he know to fold?

I didn’t take all this time to decide. For the story to make sense, I had to act quickly, and so bet my remaining stack with the same swiftness he’d been demonstrating with his flop and turn bets.

When he paused, I knew he didn’t have the flush. Then he typed “moeon” -- an attempt at “moron,” I think. He took a second to compose himself, then press his caps lock key in order to type “FK IN DK.” He then folded.

As I waited for the chips to slide my way, I readied the mouse to click “show.” Unfortunately my opponent had already left the table when I flashed my nine-high. No one else typed anything in response. However (and this is the second funny hand), I did get a very loose call down a few hands later when I’d picked up A-A-x-x, flopped a set, and had a dude with K-K-x-x somehow think he was good.

Speaking of getting something for nothing, the guys at Life’s a Bluff are running a little contest. In their latest “Random Questions” interview with Jeff Madsen, a woman appears briefly during the middle, interrupting (and participating in) the interview. Anyone who can identify the woman will win a free copy of Tom Schneider’s Oops! I Won Too Much Money, courtesy of Life’s a Bluff.

You can watch the video down on the right-hand column -- just click to play, or click twice to get to the larger YouTube version. Then, if you can identify the mystery woman, you can head over to the Life’s a Bluff forums to the contest thread for further details.

Meanwhile, I’m going to go see if I can enrage anymore low limit PLOers.

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Blogger Random Table Draw said...

Thanks for the post! One guess already...many books to give away!

8/20/2008 4:13 PM  
Blogger Mark said...

Fun hand Shamus, was wondering what you were doing calling pot pre with that junk until reading that he was an 'aces-only-raiser'.

Bluff on the end very risky at those stakes - I would have needed to see an opponent lay down after showing strength when an obv draw hits on a previous occasion to even consider this...

All-in-all a nice one!

Cheers, Mark

8/26/2008 6:18 AM  

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