After I finished my 60th Astral Pegasus SNG, I found myself at #1 on the Monthly SNG High Stakes Regular Leaderboard. Eventually, one player, @Nebula-, managed to pass me by, dropping me to #2. But I feel pretty satisfied with this accomplishment.
Not wanting to risk dropping further, I decided to shift my attention from SNG tables to MTT. I played a few a day, mostly finishing out of the money, and ended up dropping over 600,000 chips in the process. Which, considering that will just about offset the 850,000 in promotional chips I will have earned by placing 2nd in Monthly High stakes SNG, maybe it wasn’t such a good idea from a profit standpoint.
But my goal wasn’t really profit – I’m pretty confident I could have made another 1-2M last week if I’d just played in the Pegasus games I’ve been doing so well in, and probably not hurt my standings on the Monthly leaderboard, unless I had a terrible week. I could have just taken the week off. But I switched over to playing MTT to see if I could figure out how to do better in the Badonk’s Foals league, where I’ve been hitting a wall around 14th-15th place.
It hasn’t been a hard wall. Rather, I face one of two scenarios in these games:
- I hit maybe one hand in the first hour for a decent pot, then slowly bleed down to the hour break, the blinds creep up, and I’m forced to play a fold or shove preflop strategy, and eventually bust.
- I do very well, right up until I get destroyed playing great cards or a great hand that is beat by an even bigger hand, and then suddenly tumble from the top 5 to the bottom, can’t recover, and am knocked out earlier than if I’d tried to preserve my stack and fold hands like AK, QQ and try to hang on for the bubble rather than try to KO players with seemingly strong hands, and bring the bubble sooner.
So for all my MTT practice over the last week, I don’t know that I’ve really learned anything. I won chips in, I think, 2 of the however many games I played. I had many good runs stopped by a disaster hand. It seems like one mistake is all it takes to ruin a good run. I can finish in the money in 50% of my SNG games, which last an hour, and in a typical MTT, I can last to the first hour break, sometimes the second, but usually I go out somewhere shortly after the first break.
And now looking back at the Monthly SNG leaderboard, it looks like @BoatDrinks is coming up on my tail, and I may drop to #3. Maybe I’ll play some more Pegasus league and try to defend my standings, or maybe not, #2 or #3, it’s still a satisfying accomplishment. I played 40-50+% ITM for 60 games, my bankroll is up about 2.8M chips, even with the 600K lost over the last week.
I played one game today, the Poker Disclosure League Tuesday Rebuy game. Normally I can’t play in this one, it starts at 4pm, but I have a cold and didn’t work today, so I sat in. We only had 3 players: @GrandyB, and @JanCee. @Wildpokerdude stopped by too late to sit at the table, but chatted with us about some of his terrible beats by awful play. Some of the calls he’s seen beat his hands make some of the hands I’ve posted in the Today’s Ridiculous Hands thread look downright reasonable, poor guy.
But in the Tuesday Night Rebuy game, I had the hot seat for sure. In a 3-handed game, you don’t need to fold a lot with deep stacks, so I played a fairly wide range. I didn’t fold many hands, and I didn’t lose many, either. I hit at least a pair in almost every flop I saw, often top pair, sometimes 2nd pair, but when it’s heads up and the firs to act checks, you can often bet on 2nd pair and win. Mostly these were small pots, most under 400 chips – we’d limp to the flop, I’d hit something, bet it and take the hand early. But it just kept happening, again and again, and after a while it added up to a huge lead. I actually had this happen so many times I started worrying that @GrandyB would sit on a big hand and check it to me, let me bet on my 2nd pair, and then he’d call or raise me. But it didn’t happen. Poor Grandy just did not have a better hand than me more than once or twice the whole time. I even flopped two pair a number of times, and got big pots with it. And more than once in hands with @JanCee, I hit a straight where she had 2 pair, and got her for a big score.
These are just the larger pots that I won:
In the second hand of the game, I hit a full house with J2: https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/524487064
My next big score, JJ over AT. My Jacks being an over-pair to the board, but a board where an 8 makes a straight. It was probably the riskiest hand I played. https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/524489121
Flopped straight on JTs, taking JanCee’s flopped top Two Pair: https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/524494405
Backdoor two pair to overcome JanCee’s bigger Kings, KK9 under KK77A: https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/524495144
KJo hitting top pair, win on the flop: https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/524495949
Good ole 63s, hitting backdoor two pair again for the win: https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/524498403
A9o, flopping top pair: https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/524499106
AA, for the set: https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/524499700
TT, flopping two overcards, but facing no action, I bet and take the pot. I was worried Grandy was lurking for me here: https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/524499980
Q3, flopping a pair of Queens with a King over me, again no action from Grandy, and I take the pot on the flop: https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/524500407
93o, I don’t really have anything here, but make an OESD on the Turn, and bet it after no action on the flop or turn; Grandy mucks again. https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/524500789
43o, I didn’t play, but should have. Two pair on the flop, Turn a full house. I’m coaching Grandy in the chat. https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/524501098
J9o, flop two pair: https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/524501310
JTo, again flop two pair, K over on the flop. https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/524501594
Heads-up time. Despite the big lead, I’m actually worried that I’ll end up losing heads-up to JanCee and not win any chips. The blinds here are huge, 500/1000, and any mistake here could turn the tables on me very quickly. Here, I have A9s, raise and close on the flop. https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/524502403
Without going back and looking, I don’t know how many hands I stayed in to see a flop, and folded, but it was probably in the single digits.
So… Why post all these hands? My intent here is not to brag. What’s there to brag about? I have no control over the cards. This was an extraordinarily rich run of hands where my cards hit something on the flop time and again.
Rather, after a week of tough MTT play, where I was punished – punished! – for playing hands like AK or QQ, it was a relief to have a game like this. My takeaway is that it’s a lot easier to have good outcomes when you hit the flop than when you start off with strong cards. At a soft table, where there’s not a lot of preflop action, it’s easy to see cheap flops, and if you’re hitting them a lot, it’s going to be an easy game for you. And especially, when your opponents are playing soft, careful poker, it’s easy to take hands on the flop, avoiding suckouts. In this game, the flop was everything for me, and I just kept hitting it. I had only a hand or two where I bluffed, but it was always with a small bet, with position, seeing no action, and knowing that my opponent was tight/soft and unlikely to call if they didn’t have something. So very low risk. I’m not saying that Grandy’s folds weren’t the right thing to do in each hand, based on what he was folding, probably it likely was. I haven’t had a run in a game like this where I was hitting nearly ever flop I saw in a long time.
I’ll probably never see an MTT run like this. I’m thinking, if even 4-5 players had made it into this game, there would have been more preflop action, more multi-way flops, and more rivers seen. Would my luck have held up so well in such a game? Probably not. I’m sure I would have seen hands where I was outkicked, where draws filled for someone, and even just a few hands like that would have made the whole game feel very different. Might be I still could have won it, but most likely it wouldn’t have been a cakewalk where seemingly every hand I played went my way.
All that is to say that Disclosure League needs more players. We’ve got 32 members, and I don’t think we’ve filled a 9-seat table in any of the games I’ve played. We’re on at 9pm MWF, and 4pm TTh. It’s a fun PL game where you have to show your cards on a winning hand, which makes aggressive, bluff-heavy strategies tend to struggle. The more the merrier.
I’d love to see what a mutli-table game would look for us, if we could get all 32 members together on one night for a game. And if you’re not in the league, come and join us! Or spectate and watch us play a game.