More live poker ring talk, with a bit more "strategery," and dates set for CheckRayz Leaderboard events...

We've set some dates for the three big CheckRayz Leaderboard Poker Tour first quarter events. The CheckRayz Leaderboard Poker Tour will be holding three private freeroll poker tournaments at River Belle Poker, the official host of the CheckRayz Leaderboard.

On Wednesday, April 5th 11pm EST we’re set to crown our first quarter champion in the CheckRayz Leaderboard Shootout. This is a $200 freeroll, with $50 additional goes to the winner via the Beer Guy. To qualify, you must be in the top ten on the CheckRayz Leaderboard as of March 31, 2006. I’ll be emailing the invitations on March 31st at the conclusion of the “Last Call” tournament and will need a response from them no later than Monday morning at 10am EST.

On Saturday April 8th at 6pm EST, we’re rewarding everyone who supported the first quarter CheckRayz tour via the CheckRayz Leaderboard Rewards tournament. This event is a $200 freeroll and all who have CheckRayz Leaderboard points will qualify. I will be sending out invitations to this event on March 31st at the conclusion of the “Last Call” tournament and will need a response no later than Tuesday April 5th at 10am EST.

Friday April 14th will be the CheckRayz Leaderboard Challenge with $100 and a pokertracker program with key added on the line to the winner to the winner, bought and paid for by the Beer Guy - not redeemable for cash). Qualify by either winning events 1 and/or two, raking 250 hands at River Belle poker, or via the CheckRayz Leaderboard refer a friend campaign. I’m extending the deadline to qualify to April 6th for the refer a friend (refer three or more friends, using the "forward to a friend" button... be sure to tell your friend to name you in the "referred by" column at the checkrayz registration page, and they must download at least one of our pokerrooms from the checkrayz site to verify), and for the raked hands paths (rake 250 hands at river belle poker between march 1st and april 6th at any level). I will send invitations to this event on April 7th and will need a response by Monday April 10th at 10am EST.

Live play continued...

I had such a blast on Sunday, that I decided to make a run of it on Monday, so back "down the street" I went. I get there to see a nearly empty poker room, seeing three tables with action on them. Two of the tables are 1/2 NL (yuck) and the other is 2/4 limit. I put my name on the 2/4 list (2 in front of me), and also ask to be placed on the 3/6, 4/8, and 5/10 limit "waiting list." This request was granted with the promise that "we'll call you... most likely on Friday to ask if you wish for your name to carry over to the weekend." Apparantly, short of a holiday, the game selection I see in front of me is "as good as it gets" during the week.

I walk around with my friend, watching the 3 card poker game. I'm thinking I'd like to read more to... as he says "take the fun out of it" (he refers to my passion for the stats of the game as taking the fun out of the game). My buzzer goes off, and I take my seat at the 2/4 table. Once again, I start out strong, with the cards matching my hand pretty much no matter what, and I'm off to an early double up of buyin. I make conversation at the table, and realize my friend from last month (I believe I wrote about him, in reference to the Larry Bird look-a-like). This time, Larry is to my immediate left, as opposed to three to my left. The table didn't have "too bad" of a makeup, but was nothing like the one that was present yesterday.

About two hours into the game, I'm dealt pocket fours in the SB. New guy in the mid position raises. I call cleanly, sensing a family sized pot. I was a bit off, as 8 of us saw the flop. I figure this to be a decent sized pot thus far. Flop comes rainbowed J-9-4. A set! I know that I need to begin "telling my story" immediately though, as the next card could very well hurt me, and a slowplay is not appropriate here. So, I lead out with the small bet. BB (larry bird) raises it to two bets. This is something he'd do, as he often tests on the flop and turn by either check raising or raising a bet. The cutoff reraises, and I cap. Bird calls, as does one other and the cutoff, with those who called the first bet getting out of dodge.

Turn brings an 8. I'm not necessarily "happy" with this turn card, but I'm not feeling "totally beat" quite yet. Definitely needing to protect my hand no-less. I bet out, and am once again greeted with a two bet by Bird. Mid position folds, Cutoff reraises. I look at him and at Bird and comment that for some strange reason I feel like I'm a bit behind, as I cap. Both of them call. I make note that the pot is too big at this point to lay down, and am hoping for a paired board come the river (1 out on my four, possible three outs each on the 9, 8, and jack... no chance of a flush here, so that's somewhat of a relief... so, I'm looking at ten possible outs). River card is insignificant, a three. I bet out, Bird raises, cutoff reraises, I'm certain I'm beat but cap regardless, hoping to either steal here or that I'm incorrect, but both are relatively unlikely and I do need to play this one out, given the pot size and the slight possibility I'm up against either jack nine, or ko-jack and hoping against the queen ten. Showdown plays out, and indeed I see both those hands, ko-jack and queen ten, with the q-t belonging to the cutoff. Nice hand and beautiful pot!

A few hands later, I'm dealt sixes utg. I raise taking on two callers. The small bind (winner of the big pot) looks at me and says "we might have the same cards, so I'll reraise"), BB calls cleanly, as do the two others and myself. I'm hesitant on building the pot too big at this point, wanting to cut down his odds if I hit my set and he misses what I am very certain are aces. I'm eying up the small blind as the flop comes. By his reaction, I didn't even need to see what exactly the flop was, as his body jerked something fierce when the cards were exposed. He shakes as he grabs for his chips. The BB calls. I look at the flop and decide that despite the board reading A-6-8, two spades on the board and no spades in my hand, I'm folding my set before things get too ugly. He drags everyone else to the river, calling all the way and flips over AA, just as I had thought. Nice hand and great read.

Overall, I booked a loss for the session, due mostly from that pot building set of fours, but still fun no less. Tommorrow, I'll be giving thoughts to the freeroll live pub game I played this past Monday night.