2 am ugly… errr…. The monthly poker game recap

The “Monthly Game” for June is in the history books. I drew the “table of champions.” More specifically, everyone who ever won this monthly game drew the same table, thus the table of champions. Last month’s champion Mitch was seated here, fully equipped with his money (dollar sign) necklace, which was his good luck charm, specifically purchased to counteract the luck of “The shirt.” Yes, “The Shirt” was there, seated at our table. He brought his nephew, who we’ll refer to as “The Telephone,” as he was often spotted talking on the phone during the breaks (yea right). And of course, yours truly was at the table, sporting his lucky poker.com bracelet, to counteract the luck of the necklace, which was counteracting the luck of the shirt. Additionally, we had “The actor,” “Son of Fred (Sanford),” Roger, SuperDonk, “OMG, you killed Kenny,” and “T” at our table.

I think I caught the card flu, as the first hour and a half, I saw two hands, exactly two hands that did not contain 2’s. Surprisingly, I did not catch the hammer once during said timeframe, and only saw pocket twos once. The times I didn’t have twos, I had Ace Jack, and pocket sixes. But seriously, 2-3o, 2-6o, 2-5o, 2-Js, 2-8s, 2-10o… you get the point… The actor took a “not nice feeling beat” during my period of “carddeaddom.” He had his aces cracked by Roger’s two pair from the flop (QJ). Roger pushed out a 500-chip bet, which the actor called. Roger thought it put him all-in, so he flipped over his cards. However, the actor had about 95 chips or so left, but betting was pretty much dead; the actor does not improve, and is left with 95. He folds next hand, and then moves all-in. Taking down three callers, he shows his pocket aces (second time in three hands) and quadruples up.

I continued my run of horrible cards, and then it happened. Blinds at 25/50, stack around 370 or so and in the cutoff, with “OMG, you killed Kenny” having min raised UTG, I peak down and see my cards. I knew exactly what to do, so I push it all-in. Button and blinds fold her up. Kenny thinks for a while, looks up and says, “I know you have a great hand, I respect your bet, I fold.” Little does he know, my hand indeed was the most powerful hand in poker, and I felt it important to show. I proudly turn over… the hammer! 2-7 “not suited” sitting there in its glory mid table as I am raking in chips. Pulling off this move is the equivalent of Hogan “hulking up” during a match. I just knew that despite my low chip count and lack of starting hands, I was winning this tournament.

Players begin eliminating themselves, blinds are 25-50 ante of five, we‘re now five seated. Other table has six, so next one out makes the final table. Mitch, being first or second to act and short stacked, pushes all-in preflop with ace nine. Peeking down I see pocket tens, so I reraise to all-in (I have 55 chips more than Mitch). SuperDonk, sitting in the blind, had roughly thirty-five more than Mitch did. He too calls with ace five. The flop accommodates Mitch with a nine, but misses us every other way. My tens hold up, I mow down last month’s champion and SuperDonk with one “plus EV” move.

Final table forms with me, “The telephone,” “The Realtor” (a girl who is new to the monthly game, but rest assured, a total monster on the table - great player who makes some phenomenal reads). Roger is also present on the final table, as is Fred Sanford’s baby boy, the host, “OMG, u killed Kenny,” and “The shirt.”

I kinda minded my business for the most part on the final table, pretty much either stealing preflop or terminating the hand on the flop. I entered the final table with an M of roughly nine, and had the average stack. My goal for this final table was to maintain average stack until the bubble. I accomplished exactly that.

Down to five players and on the bubble, the telephone, the host and I are in a UTG-SB-BB classic battle. The pot was not raised preflop. The flop comes down two, King, Queen (K and Q both of spades). Check from the host, check from yours truly, and the telephone min bets. Host calls, as do I for some unknown reason (I am not going to even publish what hand I had here). On the turn, a ten of spades falls. At the same time, the blind clock buzzes. I laugh, look at the host and say to him “I know what that means” as I prepare to muck my cards. The host loves to make moves at the buzzer when blinds are this high. I feel bad now, as I surely jinxed him. He moves at the pot, the tele does what he does best and calls. Out of harm’s way, another spade hits the board. The host bets a lil bit, the telephone says “I’ll put you all in.” The host quickly calls, displaying the Jack of spades (he had jack ten, not suited). The telephone shows his ace of spades, conveniently matched up with his seven of hearts from under the gun. The host bubbles as a result of this phone call gone bad.

I felt dirty having made it into the money. Card dead for nearly two hours, calling the buzzer… Oh, forgot to add, I made an all-in push on the final table. I was asked how much was there. I do not ever answer that question. I took the liberty of pointing out my chips are neatly stacked in logical piles, feel free to count. I said it with quite the dick tone. I was joking of course, but I am not sure it came off that way. My whole not smoking gig sometimes makes me feel as if I come off differently than intended (read: cranky, sounding like a prick).

Play continues bubble behind us; “The Telephone” is in the chip lead. Sitting to his left is “the Realtor.” I sit between the telephone (left) and Roger (right). The Transylvanian Terror is seated right behind me, as he and I had been sweating one another from afar early on in the tournament. It sounded as if he was nearly as card dead as I was during the early portion of the tournament. Roughly 50-60% of the chips were sitting with the telephone, while I had almost 20%. The remaining 20% sat with Roger and the Realtor. I still maintained I was winning the tournament. Even told peeps I would call them back after I won. I was slightly more timid on this final table than normal. I raised my “Calling standards” when the pot was opened. To me, if roger limped, or the realtor limped, (even if they raised) hands such as ace nine lost their value at this particular table. Roger would move first, doubling through the Realtor, knocking her out of the match. I cannot remember the exact hand, though she was the only player who remained that I was not 100% confident I could outplay.

Action down to three peeps, I am now last in chips. I could tell the telephone was getting frustrated, as he was often being run over when he was trying to just see a flop. I push all in with the Fillmaff (King Jack “not suited”). He calls from his UTG limp with Jack three, also not suited. 3 hits the flop, king on the turn, river blank. I double through him, but still in third place. Roger made his move a few hands prior and was a convincing second.

Chip counts now roughly 25% to me 40% to Roger 35% to the telephone. I make a couple of steal moves, boost my stack, and Roger eliminates the Telephone, when his pocket pair holds up vs. the telephone’s ace-X.

Roger and I are heads up and he has a 3:1 lead. We color up. As we do, I try to “do Roger a favor” (Read: I am being a dick yet again). I tell Roger that being behind 3:1, and in an obvious position of power, I am willing to split the money with him 50/50 and “let” him assume the spot of champion. He tells me to “get lost” (read: go “F” yourself Mike). He does kindly counter though with taking a bit more and still getting the picture. I act insulted and pull a Happy Gilmore and say, “No, I think I’ll beat you now.” We start heads up play. I am dealt pocket sixes, and I raise 1.25 the blinds, as I am rather confident that he will call that no matter what. Additionally, it is such a small raise that I am also rather confident that with one over card, he will push all-in, two over cards he will simply re-raise me. He push all-in. King five suited vs. 6-6. I double through him.

Again, I offer a deal. This time, 50-50 with the photo shoot now going to me. He is tilting, because he “was beat with f’ing sixes.” Given the tilt, he does not split. I push out a steal raise with 7-9 not suited. He moves all in. I have him covered pretty well at this point. If I lose, we are back to three-one. If I fold, we are 50-50. I can recover from 3:1. Additionally, I had folded two hands earlier to a re-raise, though when I did, I only raised 1.25 the blinds. He could have been “making a move.” I call. He has Ace ten “not suited,” I flip over seven-nine “not suited.” Flop comes 8-8-6. Turn delivers a blank, though there are now three cards to the flush, of which my nine is suited to. So now, going into the river, any card to complete my straight on either side works, as does any seven, any nine, and now additionally, any diamond. River is a five, however, and I complete my straight and take down the second “monthly game” in three months.

Final scorecard reads “Necklace trumps shirt, bracelet trumps shirt, bracelet trumps necklace, hammer trumps all.” As always, thanks to the host and hostess for putting on the event. The time and effort that goes into the monthly game are always appreciated here at the Poker Pub.