Saturday, July 02, 2005

Just one Jackoff!

holds a monthly tournament in South Austin. The tournament is private and an invite can only be obtained through a reference from a previous participant. It is capped at 150 players. The buy-in is $100 with unlimited re-buys for the first hour. Each buy/re-buy gets you 2000 in chips. You must be completely busted to re-buy. OK, understand the particulars?

This tournament has been running for many months and it only last night hit the ceiling for players. I played in it for the first time last month when there 100 players. (I finished 2nd for ~$2.5k.) This month’s record number of players is solely due to the fact that people had learned I took 2nd previously. “Must be a soft tournament” is what I heard one of them say to his buddy after learning of the news.

Despite all my efforts, I made it to the break and hadn’t had to reach into my wallet for a re-buy. I have been running kind of bad lately and so I came prepared to have to re-buy. That first table I was on had an interesting mix. I knew two of the players quite well as I had played with each one many times before. One other player I remembered from the previous tournament in which he was in the top 15. The others were unknown to me and a couple of them were quite novice.

TANGENT WARNING! Please proceed to next paragraph to avoid tangent. Have you recognized the difference between a poker novice and a live poker novice? They are easy to spot. You see a poker novice is just that. They are new to poker. They are learning the basics and they may still be confused by hand rankings, playing kickers, and terms – especially slang terms. But a live poker novice, well, this is a whole different breed of novice. You see this is an online player. He/she knows the hand rankings, understands what a kicker is, and can use terms like a seasoned pro. But when it comes to the mechanics of live play, they are novice. I am sorry if I offend you, but you slow down the game, you can’t count your chips, let alone make a bet without fumbling your chips. You are always acting out of turn, never know who is in, or isn’t in or when the damn action is on you. You see, playing on line doesn’t allow you to play sloppy, or doesn’t explain to you why you can’t act yet. It doesn’t allow you to throw your hand away prematurely, affecting how another player acts on his hand knowing you have folded. It won’t permit you to show your hand to other players, or bet out of turn. However, when you are playing in a live game, all of these things depend on you the player to watch what is going on. On line you wait for the computer to beep at you, in live play you must PAY ATTENTION. Only after you fold your hand can you stop paying attention. Then of course there is the self-dealt tournament shuffle. (Which reminds me, why do people insist on shuffling in front of the dealer when using two decks? Clearly it should be done behind. You deal the hand, you shuffle the cards you just dealt, and you cut the cards for the guy dealing to your left. Simple.) Now didn’t any of you 20 year olds out there play cards when you were a kid? I mean for Heaven’s sake, learn how to shuffle. But then I guess that is just part of the game.

At the first break I found that I had about 8k in chips and felt pretty good. After the break, I was moved to another table in which one guy had me out stacked by a 3:1 margin. I made a few hands and made it to the third break with 13k and 42 players left. Over the next hour I slowly blinded and anted off 6k chips. The table had turned very tight as we were teetering on 32 players and every one was entrenching their positions to make the final 3 tables. I too being somewhat short stacked was waiting for an all in hand hoping to double through. Unfortunately, no such hand materialized, although had I taken some substantial risks, I could have quadrupled through and eliminated 3 players had I called a players large raise which would have been all in for me. Not a hint that 79o was going to river the nut straight.

Eventually we get down to 30 players and I am watching my stack dwindle down to about 6600. A desolate feeling when the blinds are up to 750/1500. The table had moved into lock down and any large bet was causing a mass mucking spree pot after pot. I am UTG and I feel like I need to steal the blinds to pay for this blind round and decide to hang my hat on AQ.
Mistake #1. A short stacked, out of position all in bet with AQo deserves to get kicked in the balls. Even if it was the best hand I had seen in a while, I could have lived through the blinds had I needed to.
Mistake #2. Next time announce the raise loud enough for the button to hear you! After everyone (seemingly) folded to the button, he announced raise in a blind stealing effort. (*Note the player on the button had just won the previous hand and was completely distracted while stacking his chips.) When another player announced that I had raised all-in in front of him and that he had to raise that amount, he said “oh, he already raised? I didn't know that” and folded his hand…or so I thought. His hand was released in a forward motion, but it was not anywhere near the muck. Now, is it folded or isn’t it? What is the definition in this tournament? I guess if it touches the muck is considered folded – which it did not. At this moment the player to my left says, “he has to raise, he announced a raise”, to which the player in question retrieved his hand and said “ok what ever I have to do”. He reached for his chips and the blinds immediately folded saving him the effort. The floor was called over and they were trying to get him to agree that he was required to raise the pot as the player continued to fumble his chips trying to figure out how many he needs to put into the pot.
Mistake #3. Speak up when you think you are about to be given an in justice.
"He mucked his hand."
Player not in the hand, " He said raise. He has to raise."
"He mucked his hand."
Another player not in the hand, "It doesn't matter, he is all in already"
"He mucked his hand."
Yet another player not in the hand, "The blinds have more chips than the all in guy, so he has to raise"
First Player not in the hand, "Exactly, he has to raise at least what the all in raise was"
Floor, "Is there anyone else in the pot?"
Remember, the blinds have already folded in the course of this discourse.
"Then turn over the hands and deal"
To which I see him turn over J7.
OK, what would you do?

The dealer brought the flop: 8 9 10. My opponent had turned over J7 and flopped a straight. I was dead to a jack that never came…….

8 comments:

April H. said...

I haven't played enough live poker to have had this type of problem but I think the people not in the hand should have stayed out of it as it really had nothing to do with them.

mikek628 said...

There are several issues that all relate to a self dealt tournament. There are no center dealers to ensure the rules are followed, that action is done in the correct order, that can explain to the decision maker(floorperson, tournament director, House)the events that required a ruling. With out that, it can sometimes become a melee when everyone wants to offer their opinion on what has happened.

Thanks for droping by. I think you are my only reader! lol

April said...

Nah, you have others! I'm her "twin". We have games with some of the other Austin bloggers from time to time - hopefully you can join us for one. We know how to behave ourselves, however I admit we do shuffle in front of the dealer... :)

Adam said...

I was at that tournament, first time I had heard of it. I'm still trying to figure out how they afford to have it in a hotel with no rake, but more power to them.

Structure was very aggessive, after hour one I never had more than 10X the BB despite my best efforts. Unsure if I'll play again.

The lack of a dealer or floorman was especially frustrating when we had a 4-way all-in fest at our table. As Paris would say, it was hot.

mikek628 said...

Self dealt tournaments always tend to have problems with the mechanics of the game. This is because frankly, they are on-line poker novices. That isn't necessarily a bad thing now. You have to start somewhere, right?

I just have to remind myself that mistakes WILL happen. Especially since alot of the field these days are exclusive on-line players who played very few live games if any at all.

Don't give up on the tournament because of 1 bad experience. The intent of my blog was to vent some frustration, not to downplay the tournament.

Adam said...

My reason for not playing is more structure than lack of dealers. I host my own multi table tournaments with a better structure, that's more of my motivation than anything. My 40 person tournaments take 8 hours, I think they had 150 in 7. I prefer slower levels. Self dealing I can handle. :-)

mikek628 said...

A person recently asked me WHY should you shuffle behind instead of ahead?

I see the error of my post. I never explained why. I apologize for my oversight.

OK. By having the person deal, cut, shuffle, you can get more hands in per blind round. Why? There are principally two reasons why shuffling ahead slows down the game. Firstly by doing it this way, you are giving the cards to the person who is suppose to act first. He either has to act on his hand, or he can shuffle. Few players can do both simultaneously. By having the person shuffle behind, you allow him time to begin shuffling, or even finish, by the time the action is to him. It creates less interruptions. You will see hesitation as the person is trying to deal around the person trying to gather the recently played deck to shuffle it. The dealer generally has to wait until he has gathered all of the cards up or worse, his deal gets mixed up in the cards being gathered to shuffle.
Remember, kids; next time ask for Deal, Cut, Shuffle.

Now for the shuffling...wait...I think I'll make a separate post soon about shuffles.

787Style said...

There are those of use who can have 7 riffles done before the action to you in the SB. You also have the ackwardsness of passing the cards ahead post shuffle when you shuffle behind.