Wednesday, September 11, 2019

I Showed Her the Nuts

On this particular night in Vegas, I met up with my pal Don for some poker and dinner.  Don graciously offered to burn through some of his comps for dinner.  We ended up deciding to play at Mirage and eat at the burger place there (LVB Burgers, I believe it's called).  I'd eaten there once before with Lightning.  It was fine, nothing special, and not cheap.  We each had the burger/fries/drink combo, and after tax, the bill came to $51. That's two burgers, two orders of fries and two sodas.  Twenty-five bucks for a burger & fries at a casual burger place?  Like I've been saying for years now, Vegas ain't what it used to be.  Fortunately Dave's comps covered it.  Of course I volunteered to cover the tip.

After the meal we headed over to the poker room as planned.  We not only got into the same game but were sitting right next to each other, Don on my immediate left.

It was an ok game. It was short-handed a lot of the time. I managed to win a few hands, but Don had terrible, terrible luck.  He was mostly card dead and when he did get something to play he couldn't win a damn pot.  There was one time when he did win a small pot, and he said to the dealer, "Count the deck….I'm not supposed to win a pot here, something's wrong."

Early on, after three limpers I made it $12 with King-Queen of spades.  No one called.

Then came a more interesting hand.  In early position, I opened to $10 with Ace-Queen of diamonds. It was four-way.  The flop was rather favorable for me:  King-7-4, all diamonds.  I was first to act, and I figured even though I flopped the nuts, I had to bet.  So I decided to bet, but bet small.  I put out $15.  A guy made it $35 and it folded to me. 

What to do?  If I assume he had a weaker flush, I just have to call and keep calling as I take his money.  But what else could he have?  Two pair?  A set?  Would he raise with those hands?  I thought he might.  If he did have a set, I didn't want to make it cheap for him to draw to his boat. And if he did have a set, he'd call a raise from me, and I could build a nice pot (hopefully for me and not for him if he ended up catching his boat).  I put $60 on top of my $15.  He tanked.  But finally he folded, saying, "I don't have a diamond."

Well what did he have?  Did he raise on that board with just a King?  Two pair?  Hard for me to believe he folded a set there.  Don and I talked about afterward.  He thought it was a mistake to re-raise.  He said I should have just called, the only hand he could have had was a smaller flush (he hadn't heard the guy say he didn't have a diamond—of course, we don't know if he was telling the truth).  He said he wouldn't have raised with a set but I dunno if that's true.  He might raise with a set hoping to protect his hand against someone with a naked Ace of diamonds.

So I won the pot and possibly misplayed it.  What do you think?  Should I have just flatted his $35 bet?

There was a woman at the table, across from me, who was wearing a low-cut top.  I know you're surprised that I would notice such a thing, but somehow I did.  She was in seat 2 and I was in seat 7 so I had a fairly unobstructed view.  Now when I saw her stand up, she really didn't have a great figure, and I couldn't get a good look at her face because the baseball cap she was wearing kind of hid it.  But I did notice the cleavage—there was a lot to notice if you know what I mean.

We had seen her win a few nice pots and at first we thought she was a good player, but as we watched her more we came to realize she wasn't that great a player and she had just gotten lucky.  

Anyway, I had Ace-6 of hearts in the small blind and just about everyone limped in.  So I completed and we saw a flop.  Six, seven of us?  Something like that.  I couldn't tell you what the flop was, but there was one heart on it and it checked around.  The turn card was the something other of hearts.  The aforementioned lady bet $15.  With the nut flush draw, I called and we were now heads up.

The river was another heart, giving me the nut flush through the back door.  This lady had been fairly aggressive all night and I figured she was likely to bet again on the river since she had bet the turn.  So I took a chance and checked.  My instincts were solid.  She put out $50. 

My inclination was to make it $150 but I thought about it a bit.  My check-raise there is going to scream "nut flush."  Especially since I had been playing so tight.  She could easily fold.  But I thought there was some chance of a call, she had been so aggro.  I decided to make it only $125 figuring it would be slightly easier for her to call that.

She went into the tank.  I was thinking she was going to fold but no, she did call.  Sweet.  I showed her the nuts and she mucked without revealing her hand.

Later, I was in the small blind with pocket Jacks.  After a bunch of limpers, the button made it $20.  I called, no else did.  The flop was Ace high and it went check-check.  The turn was a blank and he bet $20.  I called.  No betting on a blank river. Before we flipped our cards over, Don said to me, "You have Queens?"  He was thinking I had Queens and the button had Kings.  Very close.  The button had the Queens, still good enough to win.  Dave suggested that maybe I should have bet the turn since he checked the flop.  Maybe he would have folded his Queens?  Who knows?

Meanwhile, Don's horrible night continued.  He lost the last of his buy-in when his top pair/top kicker lost to a flopped set in a three-bet pot.  He didn't rebuy and I cashed out a little bit later, up $115.

It was a fun evening, for me anyway.  I wish Don had had a better night.


  1. If I flopped an Ace high flush, then I am going to call that bet 99% of the time. The worst case scenario is that someone has a set. If the turn isn't a fourth card of the same suit, then usually they will raise big. Then if the river is a blank and the board doesn't pair someone usually shoves. Of course, I am looking at the board and checking my cards the whole way and spend some time thinking when it is my turn. This is where your acting skills are useful.

    1. Thanks, you agree with Don. You're both probably right, although at the time I was thinking about making him pay to chase his boat (if that's what he was chasing).

    2. Imagine if someone raises you with a small flash, you flat call, and another flush-card comes on the turn. The small flush would've been willing to get it all in on the flop. Now he folds to a bet.

  2. from the title, i thought this post was going to be about Rob exposing himself

    1. Get your mind out of the gutter, Tony!

      Heh heh. To be fair, Tony, I was kind of going for the double entendre. But if I wanted to be completely misleading, I would have called the post, "I showed her MY nuts."

  3. I think the flush hand can be played either way - call or raise. If he has a set or 2 pair he’s probably calling anyway and a 4th diamond kills your action if he has a lower made flush

    The way he’s almost min raised you suggests it’s a “see where I am” bet with top pair and he can fold to any further raise

    1. Thanks for the input. Don did say that if he was raising with a set, he'd have probably raised a larger amount. I suppose you are right about the "see where I am" bet.

    2. Agreed. Sounds like the raiser had a top-pair-good-kicker-type hand and was raising "to see where he's at".

  4. I'm pretty sure that my comps covered all or most of our meal at LVB. still, we did not get much value for the comps. Like you said, nothing special and not cheap.

    1. Yeah, it's really just indicative of how expensive Vegas has gotten. If they charged a reasonable amount, it would have been fine. In the old days, that meal would have cost LESS than it cost at an similar, off-Strip place. I still remember the $5.99 NY Steak dinner specials. Those days are long gone.

      The other good option at Mirage is the Carnegie Deli, where you can get a really good, really big pastrami sandwich....for like TWENTY BUCKS. And nothing comes with it, not even a spoonful of coleslaw or potato salad.