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Poker Blog established in 2003 as the first stop for poker news, poker stories, and bad poker advice.

February 27, 2005

No Limit at The Coushatta: Turning $200 Into a Grand

by Luckbox

It was a $30+$10 tourney at the Coushatta with a $30 rebuy and a $30 add on. Basically, it was a $100+$10 tourney because you only got T1000 for your entry fee, but the rebuy and add on were each T2000. The tourney started at noon and I hit the road at about 10am so I'd be there about a half hour early. It was a limit tourney, but I want some more B&M tourney experience so I was willing to give it a shot.

When I got there, I was shocked to learn the tourney was full and there was an alternate list 14 people long. I wasn't playing in this tournament and it's the best thing that could have happened to me. I got my name on the 3/6/12 and the NL lists which were both at least 15 deep. I figured I'd get to play eventually.

To kill time, I made my way to the craps table. I know, I know... bad idea. I decided to play rather conservatively and so I just played wrong and took modest odds. Thankfully, the shooters were generally cold and my strategy paid off. When they finally called my name, I was up $50. No complaints here.

When I made it back to the poker room, I was pleased to learn they were opening a new NLHE table. The buy in was $100 min/$200 max. No one at the talbe would start with more than me. Players at the main NLHE table had stacks and stacks of red in front of them. That wouldn't be a problem where I was sitting.

The tables held 9 seats each and I settled into seat 7. I had my pad and pen ready to take notes for the tourney, but instead, I'd just document my NL play. I had a bad NL experience at the Aladdin in January and I was hoping to redeem myself. Or this would be another short poker trip.

Looking back, I wrote down 30 significant hands in the 10 hours I played. I don't think I'll write about them all now, but here are just some of the hands that helped me walk out of The Coushatta way, way up.

Losing With the Nuts

It's the first significant hand I play. I'm dealt KQo and I limp in for a family pot. Blinds are just $1/$3. The flop comes J-T-9 rainbow. Well, hard to get a better flop than that. An elderly black gentleman named Arthur, with the most charming disposition, goes all-in in front of me for $65. I call, figuring it will be just he and I, but it's called twice behind me.

The turn is a 5 of spades, the second spade on the board. It's bet 25 in front of me, and I raise to 125. Another short stack calls me for his last 38 and the original bettor folds. The hands are flipped, and I'm up against J8o and T9. Before I can even calculate their outs, the dealer flips a T. Arthur just caught a 4 outer to take down a $290 pot. Thankfully, with the side pot, I won about $10. I thought maybe this would be a sign of bad things to come.

Last Hand Before Dinner

A couple of hands (AJo and ATo) helped push me up about $100. That's when I'm dealt A6o on the button. There are a bunch of limpers so I call as well. The flop is A-T-2, rainbow. It's checked to me and I bet 30, getting two callers. The turn pairs the deuce, the second club. I bet another 50 and get one caller. He's wearing an Air Jordan hat and looks like MJ might look if he had let himself go a bit.

The river is the third club and Jordan bets all in for his final 25. Dammit. He stuck around for runner-runner clubs? I have to call and he shows Q8. Q8?? How did he call the bet on the flop? Oh well. It's dinner break time and I'm up $22.

Limping Is the Rule

I'd say it's not your typical NL table because limping is running rampant. I'm dealt JTo and I limp with the entire table. The flop is K-J-T, two diamonds. It's bet 10 and called three times. I raise another 50 and get one caller.

The turn is another diamond. Ugh. It's checked and I bet another 50 and get called again. Ugh. The river is a 9 putting four to the straight on the board. Ugh. He checks and so do I.

"Do you have the queen?" I ask. He just shakes his head and I take down the pot with two pair. Over the next half hour or so, I win another three hands with no showdowns (AJs, pocket 10's and 97s) and now I'm up to $376.

Doug Brien Is My Kicker

In case you don't know, Doug Brien missed two field goals in the final two minutes of a playoff game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. He's the only kicker in NFL history to pull off that dubious feat. So when my hand catches a big pair, but my kicker is a little weak, I call it the Doug Brien.

In the course of just a few hands, I watched my KT go down to KQ, my AQo lose to AKs, and another KT lose to KJ. Poorly played on all streets every time. I'm back down to $237.

The Open Road and Poker Tables

Late in the afternoon, Ed sat down to my left. Ed is living a life I slightly envy. He's a trucker who spends his free time hitting casino poker rooms across the country as he goes from job to job. He had just finished playing in Oklahoma before hitting Louisiana. He seemed like a really nice guy, but I got the sense he also enjoyed exaggerating a bit, but who doesn't, right?

The first hand we get invovled in, I'm dealt AJs and I raise to 10 and get three callers. The flop is J-9-6, two hearts. I bet 30 and Ed calls me. The turn is a third heart and I'm a little worried. I bet 25 to see where he is and I get called again. The river pairs the 6, but it's not another heart. I reach for chips and Ed mucks, claiming QT and a straight draw. I'm up to $296.

Just a few hands later, my A5 of spades catch a flush on the turn and I'm up to $340.

Am I Really That Stupid?

For some reason, I played Q4s and the flop comes Q-3-5. I lead out and get called by a newcomer to the table. I certainly don't have a read on him. All I know is that he looks a lot like Billy Dee Williams. The turn is a deuce and I bet out again and get called. The river is a blank and Billy Dee bets out strong in front of me.

Okay, what hands can I put him on that I actually win? The answer: A stone cold bluff. If he's got a Q, I'm either outkicked or he's got two pair. There are only two kickers worse than my 4... and the three and the two are both on the board. Of course, I don't think this through before I call. I guess I thought he was just trying to push me off the pot, maybe he missed a draw or something.

He flips 64 for the nut straight. He didn't miss his draw. I'm back down to $203. I'm sooooo stupid.


I've been playing for at least 6 hours by now when I finally see Cowboys. I'd seen the Hiltons once today, but had to fold to an Ace on the flop and 3 bettors. Other than that, my premium hands were few and far between.

I raise to 10 from the small blind and Ed the truck driver, in the BB, raises to 43. I call. The flop is J-x-x. I check hoping he's going to bet, but he checks too. The turn is a blank. I put him all in for 84 and he calls, flipping AQo. The river is another J and I win the pot. Curious call by him.

Next hand my suited Jack Hammer on the button wins a modest pot and suddenly I'm up to $430.

And the Rush Begins

Pocket J's in the BB. It's raised to 15 in front of me, I re-raise to 45 and get two callers. The flop is K-x-x. I bet 50 and they all fold. $510.

Pocket J's again. I raise to 15 and get two callers. The flop is A-J-x. I love it and check, but so do they. Dammit. The turn is a blank. I throw a little 15 out there and they fold. Dammit.

Pocket 8's. Four are in with my $15 bet. Flop is 9-7-7. I bet 50, get called. Turn is a blank. I bet 50 and he folds.

I limp with A6 of hearts. The flop is 7-6-2 of hearts. I bet 15 and get two callers. The turn is an Ace. I check, it's bet 60 by Billy Dee and I raise to 200. He folds. $610.

Playing It Blind

I call 7 limpers from the SB without looking. The flop is 5-x-x, all spades. Seat 9 bets 50 forcing me to look at my hand. I look down at the K of spades and a 5. For some reason, I decide to call even though I know he has the spades. I have outs, I guess. The turn is the A of spades. I couldn't have asked for a better caard.

I bet 100 and he thinks for awhile before calling. The turn pairs the board and I get scared. I don't know why. I'm sure he would have called another bet and he didn't have the boat. We both check and he flips 23 of spades for the loser. How does he call 100 knowing that any spade I hold beats him? No complaints here.

Beating Billy Dee Again

Ever since my stupid Q4 vs. 64, I've wanted to get my money back from Billy Dee. I get AQo and Billy Dee raises to 15 in front of me. I re-raise to 40 and he calls.

The flop is Q-J-2. I bet 50 and get called. The turn is a deuce. I bet 50 again and he calls again. The river is another Q. I push all-in and he angrily folds mumbling about the damn river. I think I should have checked, or bet less, and I'm sure I couldn't have gotten more out of him. I'm up to $715.

So That's What $1000 in Chips Looks Like!

It's Paris and Nicky, for the second time today. I hate these women, they've cost me a lot of money.

I raise to 15 and get 4 callers. The flop is K-8-2. I hate the Hilton Sisters.

It's bet 25 in front of me and there's a caller before I have to make a decision. I throw 25 more out.

The turn is a Q!!!! I love Paris! I love Nicky! The Hilton Sisters are my favorites!

It's bet 20 and called. I raise to 60 and a new players to my left pushes all in. I have to call and he flips over a set of 2's. I'm at $1000!!!!!

It Should Have Been Time To Leave

I wish I had gotten up then. An $800 profit (plus another $50 at the craps table) and it's my most successful session ever. It's almost midnight so I should really be getting home.

But you don't leave in the middle of a rush, right?

I'm dealt A9o and it's raised to 15 in front of me. I call and the flop is A-K-Q rainbow. It's bet 15 and I raise to 50 to see where I am. He calls. The turn is a blank. He checks and I bet 50 again. He calls. That's when I think I might be ahead in the hand. Maybe he's KJ or something like that.

The river is another K. Ouch. I guess if he's holding AJ or AT, my medium kicker won't matter. He bets out 100. I have to stop and think. Does he have an A? I'd hate to fold knowing I could have split. But maybe I should remember my first instinct. He checked the turn and bet the river. It has to be a K, right? I fold and he flips KQ. I was behind the whole way.

I'm down to $750 at this point and figure it's time to go. The rush is obviously over. I thank the table and make my way to the cage. I'm walking out of the casino with a $600 profit. That's hard to beat.

I think I'll be back for that NL game very, very soon.

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