Starting off a new month :)

By: TheBrokenChip
Published: Nov 22nd, 2012
October has always been my favorite month of the year. The air starts getting cooler, leaves change color and normally October brings the beginning of the NHL hockey season.

But as a kid, October was my favorite month simply for Halloween. It was a holiday where the most prepared kids reaped the rewards of securing the most candy. Most kids would only mull over the decision whether to dress up as Batman or Superman. I’ll admit that is a tough choice, but I would take Halloween to a new level. I would spend hours planning out a route where I could reach as many houses as possible; I’d plan a costume that was light enough that I could run for hours; and I’d leave extra pillow cases at friend’s houses along route so I could pick up new ones as mine got too full. All of this planning always left me with candy well into December and always weeks after all my friend’s candy was gone.

Even though I’m far too old to go trick or treating, that same October preparation helped me create a plan for the last three months of my challenge. With July, August and September under my belt, I was up $13285 after 164.75 hours. The last three months of my challenge had to be planned out as there were several significant poker events taking place. At the end of October, Woodbine Raceway in Toronto was opening a twelve table casino – the very first to offer legal poker in a city of nearly 4 million. I knew that the first few months of the new casino being opened, that it would offer some incredibly soft games. On top of that, in mid-November the WPT was making a stop in Montreal for two weeks and would offer some tournaments with huge guarantees. Also in November there were two new card rooms in Montreal opening up: El Jumangi and VIP Poker, so I wanted to plan a visit to each room. Lastly, in December some friends and I are making a trip to Las Vegas which needed to be planned out. As the “Vegas expert” among my friends, they nicely left me in charge of booking everything.

With plenty on the go, I couldn’t lose focus on the most important thing – actually playing poker. I decided in October I would try to put in some heavy hours and go well beyond my 40 hour/month goal. My first session of the month went anything but perfect. I sat down in a 2/5NL game and spent a couple hours picking up small pots but didn’t get my chance to play any big pots until I was dealt pocket 3’s in late position. I called another player’s raise to $25 along with two others. The flop fell down perfectly with the rainbow board of 3, 7, 8. The original raiser pushed out a bet of $75 and I was the only caller. I was very familiar with my opponent and he rarely got out of line but was capable of semi-bluffing. At this point in the hand, there are no draws that I give him so his narrow range is left to over pairs and AK, AQ where he was only continuation betting.

My thoughts changed as the turn brought a 9 and also a flush draw. Suddenly my opponent spazzed out and jammed for $500 into roughly a $250 pot. I knew the 9 improved his hand, but couldn’t imagine he’d play that way if he turned a set of 9’s or had flopped a seat of 8’s or 7’s. I made the call to be shown 10-10 for a turned open ended straight draw. The river was destined to hurt me but instead of bringing the straight, he rivered a higher set. Right as the card dropped, I was needled by another player as he let me know it was the case 10 in the deck.

Things went from bad to worse only minutes later when I had A♦ 3♦ and limped in UTG along with five other players. We saw a flop of 9♦ 9♥ 7♦ . As everyone limped, I wanted to build a pot and pushed out of $20 bet and received four callers. The 2♦ came on the turn so I led out again for $60, had one caller before a shorter stack with only $140 shoved. I elected to only call as I felt I was likely ahead of the other player in the hand and wanted him to call as well. To my surprise, he shoved overtop of me. I feel like I made a mistake at this point in the hand because rarely am I against two other flushes and my opponent who shoved overtop is a pretty tight player. Combined with a bit of tilt from my set over set hand, I elected to place my remaining $350 into the pot only getting about 2.5:1 on the call. Sure enough he rolled over 9â™*-7â™* for a flopped full house and I was drawing dead. This session along with another two days later left me in an early hole of -$1350 so I took the next couple of days off to refocus and return ready to start crushing again.

At my blog page, I’ve got my graph from July – October as well as up to date November posts, you can check it out here:

Also be sure to leave a comment about what you’d like to read more about so I can include it in my next posts.
Thanks and good luck at the tables!
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