Week to date

Sort of stagnant to be honest.  No real ups, no real downs.  Pretty much even.  On Monday I didn’t play at all – just cracked the books in order to reset and recharge the batteries.

Played a few tourneys that didn’t end as favorably as I’d like.  I was literally the chip leader several times as we got close to the bubble and situations where I’d find myself with 66 and raise – get smooth called.  Flop of JJ4.  Opponent bets, I re-raise, he raises all-in.  I think about it – I’m pretty convinced he doesn’t have any J’s – and I can beat a 4 with my 6’s.  I think about it and my instinct tells me to fold as an incorrect call here will cripple my stack.  But of course instead of reasoning that he probably has a pair that can beat 6’s – I say to myself that he’s got AK or something and is just being a bully.   I call and see 10-10 and kaboom!

So – I gave myself a pep-talk last night and said, “go to the cash game and play heads up – your tourney decisions aren’t optimal today”.   I sought out a loose opponent and found one that I’d played recently.  My notes on him said that I took him for 100 Big Blinds recently.   I sat down with 1/2 his stack – just in case my play wasn’t optimal – I’d maybe get out relatively unscathed.

Turns out I think I did pretty well.  Took him for the same amount in about 21 minutes.  My conscious decision was to play only 2 pocket paint cards if I was out of position against him.   Be looser if I was the button.  My thinking was that w/ 2 paint cards I could likely call a  small/med flop bet if I didn’t hit, but still had overcards.  I could fold if he continued to bet and I missed both the flop and the turn.   I might even get a free turn and/or river card regularly if I smooth called when I didn’t hit the flop but had overs.   This turned out to be a HUGE success.   I gladly dumped suspect hands from out of position preflop.   I found that the guy bluffed a LOT – so my overcards seemed to work in more ways than one.  He’d hit air and bet, then slow down and I’d get free cards and win on high cards AND I was able to hit my overcards frequently and he didn’t slow down his betting on the flop that he connected with.   I also hit a few draws.  I also realized a few times that he thought I was on the draw, so when a scare card would come up I’d make a sizable bet, and he’d fold…when indeed – I had air!

I was pretty happy with my performance.  I felt I really had a game plan and stuck to it.   It resulted in big pots when I wanted big pots and small pots when I wanted small pots.  The only time he won a big pot was when I had KK and he flopped mid pair (7’s).   He was on tilt, shoved, and I called – he rivered a 7 for trips and took down a nice one.  I got him back later though through solid play and patience.

I hope to be able to make that kind of strategy and execution a habit.

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