Friday, December 5, 2014

Doubling Up (Almost) at the Bike

As i just arrived back in Vegas for what promises to be my longest stay here ever, it seems appropriate to tell the story of my last session at The Bike in bountiful Bell Gardens, CA.

Before I get to that, I want to mention that tomorrow, Saturday, I will be playing the the WPBT poker tournament at the Aria.  For past tales from this event (which I cashed in last year), see here and here.  The following Saturday, I will be playing again at the Aria, in the AVP/PokerAtlas meetup and tournament (see here). If you're in Vegas for either one of these days, or both, please come join in!

But back to the Bike. I bought in for $300 in the $2/$3 NL game.  I had only been there a few minutes when, after a couple of limpers, a guy raised to $20.  I was in late position with Ace-King suited.  I called.  The guy behind me called.  The lady under-the-gun, who had limped in, re-raised to $125 (the classic limp/re-raise, a favorite of mine).  The other limped folded, the original raised shoved.

Welcome to the Bike. 

Both the lady who had limped/re-raised and the guy who shoved had similar stacks to my $300. I folded, the guy behind me folded, and the lady called.  I don’t remember the board, but it was Jack high and I would have shown down Ace-high if I had called.  The lady flipped over pocket Queens.  The gentleman flipped over pocket Kings.  The lady rebought.

Still early in the session, I raised to $11 with pocket 9’s.  Four players called.  The flop was 7-6-5, rainbow.  I bet $40, one player called.  We both checked an Ace on the flop.  We both checked a Jack on the turn.  He flipped over pocket 8’s.

In the small blind, I threw in a buck to complete with Ace-8 off. About five of us saw the flop, which was Ace-8-5, two diamonds.  My Ace was a diamond.  I bet $5, three players called.  The turn was a blank, I bet $30.  Everyone but the short stack folded; he shoved for $32 more.  I called, and after a blank river, he showed a weak Ace.

Then, amazingly enough, I got pocket Queens, both red.  I say amazingly enough because that is the only premium pocket pair I seem to get at the Bike.  No Aces, Kings (dreaded or otherwise), no Jacks.  Just Queens.  I raised to $18 in late position and had two callers.  The flop was 9-8-8, two clubs.  A guy led out for $25.  I called, the other guy folded.  The river was red 6, and he shoved for $131.  Sigh.  It was the Bike so he could have been playing just a 9 that way.  But I just couldn’t see putting that much in to that pot with just an overpair.  It was probably weak, but I folded.

I went through a long spell where I didn’t play much as I was too card dead.  Then, I just limped in with pocket 7’s.  Six of us saw a flop that was 10-7-3, rainbow.  I checked but no one bet.  The turn was a blank, I put out $15, only one player called, a short stack.  The river was the case 7.  I was first to act, I had to bet for value.  I put out $20.  He only had about $35 but I thought he was more likely to put it all in if I bet smaller than if I bet him all-in.  Nope.  He tanked and eventually did call, leaving $15 behind.  He didn’t show his losing hand when I showed my quads.

Just a few hands later I limped in from late position with pocket deuces.  Many of us saw a flop of Ace-8-2, rainbow.  I decided to slow play it again, so I checked, as did everyone else. The turn was a second heart and a guy bet $12, I called, and it was heads up. The river was the Ace of hearts.  Did he make a backdoor flush?   No.  He checked, I bet $20 and he folded.  He said he had misread his hand and thought he had turned two pair.

I raised to $17 in late position with 7-6 of hearts.  Only one player called. The flop was Ace-7-6, two diamonds.  I bet $20.  He made it $40 and everyone else folded.  He had less than $80 left, I put out a stack of $100.  He called.  The other cards were blanks, I showed my hand and he showed an Ace.

That put my stack at well over $400.  A while later, I raised to $12 with Ace-Jack of spades.  Three players called.  The flop was Ten-8-8, rainbow, one spade.  A guy led out for $20 in front of me.  It was the same guy I folded my Queens to (he had made the donk bet on that hand too).  I called.  I had the overcards and two back-door draws, more than enough to call with according to the Ed Miller strategy.  It was now heads up.

The turn was the King of spades.  He bet $50.  I tanked, but then called.  I was happy to see the 4 of spades on the river.  He announced all in!  He had about $125-$130.  I snap called.  I didn’t think he had a boat but if he did, so be it.  He didn’t want to show….he said, “You probably have me beat.”  I definitely wanted to see what hand he had played that way, so I didn’t show until he did.  Very reluctantly, he showed Ace-Jack.  But both of his were red (I didn’t see if they were suited).  He had played that hand all the way as a total bluff.  Thank you sir!  Unfortunately, he didn’t rebuy.

I now had over $600 in front of me.  It was fairly early, but I couldn’t get myself away from thinking that it would sure be nice for my last session in L.A. before a return to Vegas to be a double up.  I didn’t quite make it.  I entered a few pots, won only a small one.  When I didn’t c-bet after raising with pocket Jacks (finally a premium pair other than Queens), I knew I was getting too protective of the win and it was time to call it a day.  On that Jacks hand, there were four callers and both an Ace and a King on the flop, so it was a bit scary.  But no one ever put in a bet in, and I probably could have bet the guy who won it with King-crap off his hand if I had bet.

I walked away up just a tiny bit over $300 ahead, and I was ok settling for that.

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