Tuesday, April 04, 2006

House party

The Blogfather reminded us all recently about the importance of occasionally testing yourself at higher limits. Last night, after busting out of a Group tournament on Stars, I decided to take my shot. Nothing extraordinary. I had a little profit in Titan to play with and decided to sit at a $1/2 6-max no-limit table for the first time.

I've played some $1/2 NL live with The Group. While I have fared okay at times, there also were occasions when I felt overmatched. I couldn't adjust to people calling $8 and $10 preflop raises with ace-rag and other odd holdings. I couldn't adjust to the big post-flop bets. I couldn't adjust period. Understand: Many of the people in The Group can play. But there are others who have some skills and are recklessly aggressive to boot. I've stayed away from $1/2 since my last expensive donk session. The friendlier confines of the .25/.50 "kiddie" game have been more my speed.

But online is a different situation. And I viewed the $100 I was taking to Titan's $1/2 table as mad money. I don't think much of the site (no stored hand histories, awful tournament structures), so I figured that if I lost my buy-in and whatever else I had behind it would be no big deal. I needed to take a shot and last night felt like the right time and place.

I'm not sure how much I learned other than the fact there are some bad poker players on Titan. We're talking .10/.25 Party Poker bad. I had seen some horrendous play at lower limits on Titan, but I expected $1/2 to be much tougher. I cashed out with $250 during a 30-minute session. I got all my money in with A-Q after hitting an ace on the flop and a queen on the turn and got doubled up by ... pocket 8s. Alrighty then. Not long after, I took a big chunk off someone with a flopped set of 9s vs. A-K. He got his ace on the flop and fell hopelessly in love with TPTK.

After busting out of the Wil Wheaton tournament tonight I ignored conventional poker wisdom about short sessions and decided to sit at a $1/2 table for the 15 minutes that stood betwen me and a $5 rebuy tournament. I cashed out $135 in profits just as the tournament started. Playing mostly four- and five-handed, I didn't see too much talent at that table, either. Get-the-nuts-and-wait-for-someone-to-inevitably-pay-you-off poker continues to be a worthwhile strategy.

I realize that 45 minutes is a meaningless sample of what the actual level of play might be. Nor, as they say in the fine print, are these two sessions any indication of future performance. I can see me kissing those newfound winnings good-bye in a hurry when the donks start sucking out instead of paying. Or when the real players show up.

While a wise gambler once admonished me to never think of winnings as the house's money, my Titan bankroll feels a little bit like that right now. And, I figure, sitting at a table with the house's money is preferable to playing with scared money, no matter who it belongs to.


Blogger littleacornman said...

Nice work at the $1-$2 6 max nl.Table selection is probably the key.Too many good players show up or if there's not at least one blatant donkey its time to move...

2:58 PM  
Anonymous twitch said...

soon my friend, all your gold will be mine

5:20 PM  

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