Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Bad Floor Ruling in My Favor

On this night, I was at kind of a boring table, very little action.  I became the aggressor for awhile, stole some blinds, stole some limpers money, but then the table picked up a few higher action players and I had to reign it in.  I called some raises that were maybe questionable from some of the aggros, missed, and ended up down to about $120 (from $200).

That’s when Michelle showed up to deal.  She’s the dealer who never pushes me a pot, as we joke.  This was just a night or two after the birthday game I described here when she was yelling “Jack-Ball me!” so of course I teased her about that all through her down.

Amazingly, I won a few pots while she dealt.  Small ones at first.  Then I called a raise to $15 with Ace-Queen suited in the big blind (there were a number of callers).  The flop was Ace-Jack-x, and I called $20 on the flop and $30 on the turn (just the two of us after the flop).  I don’t know why I played that so cautiously.  We both checked the river and he had King-Jack for just a pair of Jacks.  I commented that I may have missed a few bets there.  But it was another pot awarded to me by Michelle.

Then I had 6-7 hearts and called a raise to $11 on the button.  Three of us saw the flop, which was 6-7-2, rainbow.  The first player checked to the preflop raiser, who bet $20.  Now, I started counting out chips for a raise, and didn’t notice that the player who checked ignored the fact that the action was on me putt out a raise (a check-raise) himself.  So as I was putting out my $55 bet, the dealer (Michelle) was putting her hand over this guys chips and telling him he was betting out of turn.

Now my bet was out there and Michelle told the guy the bet was now $55.  The guy had put out $50 thinking he was raising.  But suddenly, he didn’t want to bet anymore.  He tried to pull back the $50.  Michelle told him that he couldn’t take back the bet.  At least that’s what I think she was saying.  I wasn’t sure.  And I didn’t want to say anything for fear of giving away any more information about my hand. 

The guy was resistant to whatever Michelle was telling him so she immediately called for the floor.  When the floor go there, it looked like the floor told the guy he had to add $5 more to his bet, and that his $50 had to stay.  But I wasn’t sure.  I had already determined that this player was a pretty bad player and prone to some pretty poor bluffs.  I thought that might be the case this time.  Anyway, he was seemingly forced to call my bet and the preflop raiser folded.  The turn was a 9 and he checked.  I don’t recall what I bet, but I did, and he folded as fast as humanly possible.

Later, after that player had left, I went to the floorperson for an explanation.  I wasn’t sure what had happened. The floor person told me that he wanted to take back his bet when I raised. So he was just planning another bluff there and his plan was foiled when my raised indicated that his bluff had no chance of working. So he wanted out.

The floor told the guy that since his bet went over the betting line, it had to stay.  He could have folded or put in another $5 to complete the call.

However, as the floor was explaining to me that the guy wanted to take back his money and he wouldn’t let him, he did realize that, since my bet had changed the action, his ruling was actually in error. He should have let the guy take back his money and allowed him to fold without losing anything on the flop.

OK, so it appeared I had gotten $55 extra due to a floor person’s mistake.  I didn’t feel too badly.  The guy was a terrible player and busted out soon after.  He would have lost that $55 to somebody anyway, it might as well have been me.  Besides, he exhibited some classless behavior and deserved it.

The player to his right was a very nice lady from Chicago, in Vegas for some kind of conference.  When they were both in the blinds, it folded to the Chicago lady and she asked if he would chop and he said yes.  She showed that she had pocket 10’s.  A few orbits later, same situation, she mucked her hand assuming they would chop again, but now he said he wanted to play.  He ended up getting her $1 small blind since she had already mucked her cards.  She was nice about it but a bit perturbed.  Common courtesy dictates that you either always chop or never chop, of course.  And she reminded him that she had thrown away a good hand last time, the pocket 10’s.

So I really didn’t lose any sleep over the bad ruling that cost this guy money. A few more orbits later, it folded to me when I was in the small blind.  I asked the big blind if he wanted to chop and he said yes (it wasn’t the Chicago lady).  I made sure I showed him—and the nice woman from Chicago—my hand.  It was the dreaded pocket Kings. And I wasn’t just chopping there because that’s my kryptonite hand.  I explained that I’ve done the same thing with pocket Aces.

That was a nice pot for Michelle to send my way, bad ruling and all, I had to ask her, “OK, who are you and what have you done with Michelle?  Michelle doesn’t push me pots like you are.  Is she ok?  Please don’t hurt her.”

A little while later I had pocket Aces, raised to $10, had 3 callers.  It was a dry looking flop, I bet $30, no callers.  “Who is the pretty girl impersonating Michelle tonight?” I said to her as she pushed me more chips.  It was like she was making up for all the times I had never won a pot on her down.  I swear, if I was still keeping a running count in my head of all the pots she “owed” me, I think we’d be down near zero.

By the time Michelle was done at this table, I think I had doubled up my $200 buy-in—or at least was close to it.  I won a few smallish pots with the next couple of dealers to add a bit to my stack. 

Then I got pocket Jacks.  An aggro made it $13 in front of me.  This seemed like a good player to three-bet Jacks against.  I made it $35.  Suddenly, the nice lady from Chicago, in late position, announced all in.  I hadn’t seen her shove preflop all night.  She had about $180.  I had her covered by close to $100.

The original raiser folded instantly. The lady from Chicago had been playing very tight all night.  I was pretty sure she had me beat.  The only hand I could put her on that I was ahead of was Ace-King, and frankly, I doubted she’d shove with AK.  And if that’s what she had, I was only a slight favorite. 

I said to her, with a smile, “I think you want to me to call.”  Truth is, I didn’t really wait for her to react, I knew I was going to fold.  But I did hear her say, “Depends on what you have.”  I guess that meant she didn’t have Aces, huh?  Still, I laid it down.

I couldn’t help wonder if I had made a good laydown.  As much as I assumed I had, I couldn’t stop thinking about it.  Now, I’m not one to ask a player, while we’re still at the table, what they had, mostly because I don’t like being asked that question when the shoe is on the other foot.  And surely, I’m not the kind of player who asks, “Will you show if I fold?” (see here).  But when there’s a nice person involved, I try to remember to ask them about a hand like this after one of us is through for the session (but quietly, so no one else can hear).  But to my chagrin, after I had cashed out and was headed back to the table to ask her, she had cashed out herself, and wasn’t at the cashier.  I wonder if she left without any chips?  She was doing ok as I recall.

That bothered me.  Now that I knew I would never find out about her hand, it was bugging me even more.  But luckily, the next night, I saw the same lady in the same seat at the same table.  I was playing in a different game, but I went over there when I had a moment and asked her about the hand.  At first, she wasn’t sure what hand I was talking about, but I helped her remember and she said she had pocket Kings.  She even told me she’d only have done that with Kings or Aces and she hadn’t had Aces all night.  I told her I had Jacks and thanked her for the info.

By coincidence, Michelle was dealing at her table when I went over there, and when she dealt at the table I was at later in the evening, she asked, “So, you found out you made a good laydown right?  When you had Jacks?”  Yes indeed.

Late in the session, Abe came over to see how I was doing.  He saw all my chips and I asked him, “You know who I got most of these chips from?”  He started scoping out the players at the table, thinking I meant some donkey.  “It was Michelle, believe it or not.”

“Michelle?  You mean that Michelle?”  He pointed to the next table over.  She was no longer dealing, she was playing.”  I said “Yes, but not when she was playing, when she was dealing.”  Abe of course knows about Michelle’s inability to deal me winning hands.  “It’s no big deal to win money from her when she’s playing, but for me to get all this money when she’s dealing is a miracle.”

I won some more small pots, including a time I four-bet Aces preflop and didn’t get a call.  And then I was soon ready to call it a night with nearly a $300 profit, the bulk of it from Michelle.  Oh, and with a little help from a bad floor ruling.       


  1. Yeah, those fickle choppers are annoying like the slow rollers...

    1. Yeah, there's a special place in hell reserved for them, I'm sure or it.