Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Crazy Tier Two Bubble Hand (HA)

This bad boy just went down and I'm still sitting here going "whoa..." Using the last of my 5 $26 Tokens I bought in to another 18-seater standard... top 5 get a $75 Token (I was 1 for 4 so far) and 6th place gets $57 cash. I went in to the final table with about 2200 in chips, then dwindled down as far as 1700 or so before doubling up in a nail-biting coinflip where I shoved AQ in middle position hoping just to get some blinds, but managed to get more out of the big stack that called with 77 and couldn't dodge an Ace on the flop. That was during 7-handed play, which as I know now is pretty much the tightest freaking play ever. No one's trying to win it, we all just want to wait for someone to break and sneak in to that top 5. 6th place ain't so bad either, but heaven help you if you go out in 7th. So after about half an hour of this constant folding and occasional tip-toeing in small pots, not to mention a few short-stack all-ins that coould have broken the tension but only distributed the chips more evenly, this wowzer of a hand came up and ended it all just like that...

Full Tilt Poker, NL Hold'em Tournament, 200/400 Blinds, 7 Players - Hand History Converter

CO: 1,180
BTN: 4,285
SB: 5,140
Hero (BB): 2,310
UTG: 4,645
UTG+1: 1,220
MP: 8,220

Pre-Flop: (600) 9s 5c dealt to Hero (BB)
UTG folds, UTG+1 raises to 1,220 and is All-In, MP calls 1,220, CO calls 1,180 and is All-In, 3 folds

Flop: (4,220) Kc Td Ad (3 Players - 1 is All-In)
Turn: (4,220) 6d (3 Players - 1 is All-In)
River: (4,220) 2h (3 Players - 1 is All-In)

Results: 4,220 Pot
CO showed Kh Ks (three of a kind, Kings) and LOST (-1,180 NET)
UTG+1 showed Ac Th (two pair, Aces and Tens) and LOST (-1,220 NET)
MP showed 7d 8d (a flush, Ace high) and WON 4,220 (+3,000 NET)

So that ended it right then and there. The poor CO guy with KK ended up in 7th because his stack was just barely shorter than the guy UTG+1 that pushed with ATo, who ended up in 6th and at least managed to get $57. Is it possible here that CO's decision to get involved in a multi-way pot, albeit with the 2nd best starting hand, was a big slip up, especially knowing that if either player caught him he would be walking away in 7th. Not to mention the fact that there's a good shot of UTG+1 getting knocked out here and being guaranteed at least something if he just waits for a better spot.

Let's think it through. UTG+1 says "Ace-Ten, alright, best hand I've seen in the past 30 minutes and I really gotta double up or these blinds are going to crush me... push!" Not a terrible decision, especially knowing that the super-aggressive UTG player was out of the way, and that yours truly in the BB has been very passive. Big stack MP player says "I got the chips to spare, and against AK and other unpaired overcards I'm still 40% or so to win it and finish this nightmare of a bubble... more than worth it just to do that... call." Now in comes the CO, who was probably just looking forward to open-pushing his KK and doubling up through a weak caller, though just taking the blinds would be huge for him as well. All of a sudden he's got himself AT LEAST a 3-way pot, and jumping in would only sweeten it for more players to call as well in hopes of knocking either of the short-stacks, or both, out. He's also got to figure that at best, he's up against two smaller pairs or shared Aces (i.e. AQ and AK), which would make him about 65-68% to triple up. With one Ace and two random paint cards he's just over 50%, and in this case, the odds were about the same, according to my calculations:

KK - 53.5%
AT - 23.8%
78 - 22.6%

Add another player in the mix with a small pair or more suited connector type hands and it's down close to 40%. Still the favorite... but basically risking everything on a coinflip at best. Not sure what I would've done in if I were in his shoes. In an isolated situation just considering the odds, I'd say it was the correct call, and if this were an actual tournament where you're playing to win it, it's pretty much a must-call situation. But in this case, right on the bubble, and with a potential bubble-bursting hand taking place, it's a really tough call. Just for fun, here are the remaining odds and outcomes:

FLOP: (Kc Td Ad)

KK - 60.9%
AT - 9.1%
78 - 29.0%

TURN: (Kc Td Ad 6d)

KK - 14.3%
AT - 4.8%
78 - 81.0%


KK (53.5%) - 7th place, $0
AT (23.8%) - 6th place, $57
78 (22.6%) - 1st (Tie), $75 Token

In terms of my whole Tier undertaking, I've had decent results thus far I guess:

20 6-handed $6+.50 turbo SNG's -> 5 $26 Tokens + $40 cash -> 5 $24+2 18-seater SNG's -> 2 $75 Tokens

... and hopefully: 2 $75 Tokens -> 2 $69+6 18-seater SNG's -> $432 Tournament Dollars ($410.40 real cash after conversion)

That would be major ROI, but even just one cash would be big. Going 0/2 would not be so hot, so let's just hope I can play solid and have some solid luck. I'll let you know when that finally happens.

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