Friday, March 17, 2006
Subtitle: Husband and wife clash again - Andrew and Cathy bring on round 2 of their last longer bet
Mid-March. Time for another Diamond Game. This time, seven of us gathered for a Wednesday evening incarnation of the D-Game - a $50 buy-in freeze-out NL hold'em tournament. Players start with 3500 in chips, and blinds go up every 15 minutes. Two places paid.
The starting table:
1. Shelly (me)
2. Cathy (Andrew's wife)
5. Scott (our host)
7. Andrew (Cathy's husband)
Early in the game, Scott pussed out and failed to raise preflop with the Hammer. Instead, he limped in the blinds, saw a flop, and folded to a bet.
That is NOT how you play the Hammer, Scott. Sheesh.
In our first husband-and-wife clash: Cathy won a small pot that was checked down. She rivered a pair versus her husband Andrew's Ace high, upon which Andrew pouted. Cathy reacts, "He's just mad because he didn't get any! [chips]" Andrew replied, "All day!" (Do ya sense what's coming?) Cathy: "And all night!"
Cathy took charge of the table early on, taking advantage of everybody's fear of her tight play. In a hand in level one, Cathy raised preflop and found callers in Alex and Scott. She bet all the way down to a board of 5-4-Q-7-K, and on her river bet, the wuss boys folded. I advised Cathy to start bluffing them, if they insist on respecting her bets. :)
From the big blind, I looked down to find 5-2 offsuit. I saw a free flop of 2-2-x. Nice. However, my opponent was Alex, who I had never played against. All I knew at that point was that Alex played in larger buy-in tournaments online. (There was mention of a $1,000 buy in game). He'd been a bit aggressive thus far, but - again, the game was still new and we'd hardly been playing for 20 minutes. I checked my trip ducks. Alex bet out (less-than-pot-size, if I recall correctly). I called. The turn came a blank (no flush or obvious straight draws). I checked again, as Alex had already moved his hand to his chip stack. He fired out the same bet. I contemplated raising, but was suddenly worried that my 5 kicker would be the death of me. I called. The river was an Ace, and by now I'd decided that so many of my children were in that pot that a check-raise was in order. I hoped the Ace helped him, maybe giving him 2 pair. It must have helped, as he pushed all in. I sighed - I'd have felt better being the one pushing, as I don't like the thought of calling all in for my tournament life, particularly so early in the tournament. I called. Alex turned over Ace-x for top pair, Aces. My trips were good. Turns out, Alex was trying to run a bluff on me. I love it. I doubled up.
Alex went out shortly thereafter, when Ed hit a presto. Ed's 55 made a set against Alex's KK. With that, Alex went out in 7th place and was left to watch the rest of us play. I suppose that's part of the reason why some people advise not to play big pots early in a tourney. Watching other people play sucks.
Scott and Andrew got into it, making baby Jebus cry with a series of min-raises against each other on a board of: 8s Ad 4c. Hey, guys - this isn't limit! The turn brought the 3 of diamonds, and Andrew pushed all in. (Finally!) Scott called.
Before Scott could even bemoan his fate, the river brought another Queen, and instead Andrew did the moaning. (That was likely to be the only moaning to be had, as Cathy had indicated earlier). Andrew's chip stack was crippled.
Before I kick Andrew out of this story with his fateful exit from the tournament, I must say that he has one of the coolest nicknames ever. Andrew is known to some of his friends as "Deeks." Why? Apparently, one drunken evening, his friends were comparing him to a lame duck. It was noted that he is even lamer than a lame duck. What is lamer than a lame duck?
Thus the nickname, Decoy - or Deeks for short.
Andrew lived up to his nickname when he threw himself all in. His Ace-Ten was acting as a decoy for a real hand, but my hook-hook tore that shit up. My Jacks held up and Andrew finished in 6th place. Cathy outlasted her husband once again. (It's so typical, isn't it, Cathy? Only a girl can truly understand). Great nickname, though, Deeks!
Cathy made another play that had me thinking she rightly should be feared. On a board of Qh 6h 8s, she check-raised Ed. He called, and the turn brought Qd. Cathy checked, scaring the living hell out of Ed. He went into the tank and eventually checked behind her. The river was the 10h, and when Cathy checked again, Ed bet out 300. Cathy folded. I thought I heard that Cathy was pulling the check-raise with pocket two's, trying to find out where Ed was in the hand. Not a beginner move, if you ask me. Nice laydown, too. (Maybe I'm just spending too much time with the fish that call down with low pocket pairs despite multiple overcards onboard, because they "have a pair!").
Alex and Andrew, bored with watching the rest of us play poker, started with the degenerate gambling, betting on high card draws.
Randy met a nasty suck-and-re-suck fate. He raised big preflop, and I had to put him all in with my Hilton Sisters. Being mostly committed (to the pot), he had to call with his ATo. The flop:
T 8 J
Turn: T (ouch)
River: Q (yikes! Sorry baby!)
I won with the queens full of ten's, versus Randy's set of ten's. He went out in 5th place.
What a hand. There were 4 people left, and 2 places paid. Cathy, Ed, and I are pretty well short-stacked, while Scott is doing alright. I'm on the big blind. Cathy raised under the gun preflop. Scott re-raised. I groaned, not wanting to even look at my cards. I peeked down at AKo. OY. My lips parted and nearly let loose an insta-push, as is seen so often on TV with Big Slick. I held back though, and tanked. I checked out Cathy's chip stack. She barely had me covered. Scott definitely had me covered. If I and another person went out on that hand, we'd both be out of the money, leaving Ed and Scott in the money. Ed had even fewer chips than I did, but was out of the hand.
OY. What should I do? At best, I'm racing. One of these two has a pair. At worst, they've both got pairs, possibly AA or KK, and equally possible is a split pot with one of them.
Turns out, Cathy had AKs and Scott had QQ. Cathy's hand did not improve, and she continued her trend of finishing in 4th place. I patted myself on the back and vowed to make the money.
Ed pushed all in with Ace Ten offsuit. I called with Ace Queen suited, and my hand held up. Ed bubbled in 3rd place.
The heads-up match between Scott and I did not last long, as I was very short stacked in comparison to him. A few hands in, on a board of KQ9, I pushed all in with my Q2. Scott called with K8 and his top pair held up. I went out in 2nd place, and Scott was crowned champion.
The final tally:
2nd: Shelly (me)
It was a relief to finally cash again at a Diamond Game. I've done nothing but donate there since last summer, after a hot streak of cashing in early 2005. Look out, boys (and Cathy!) - I feel a winning streak coming on!
Thanks to Scott for hosting a great game, as usual. I look forward to the next Wednesday night Diamond Game.