Category Archives: Online Poker Hands

Huge Online Poker Money

I am one person who will never make it to the higher stakes of poker.  After all, I’m the type of player who gets sick if I lose more than $60 or $70 in a single hand.  I couldn’t even begin to imagine what it would be like to lose $600 or $700 in a single hand – much less thousands of dollars!  But these are the things that high stakes players deal with every day and this was never more apparent than at Full Tilt Poker on October 26th. 

On this night, the record for the largest online poker hand in history would fall several times with players like Tom “Durrrr” Dwan, Phil Ivey, and John Juanda being involved in some of the pots.  Things kicked off when Durrrr went up against Sami “LarsLuzak” Kelopuro for a pot of $618,000 and Durrrr got the better of LarsLuzak in the exchange; he also set the record for the largest online poker pot ever won.

Despite this huge win for Durrrr, things would only go downhill from here as he again got involved in a huge pot with John Juanda.  With the pot sitting at $678,000 this time, longtime live pro Juanda caught a break when he rivered a king while holding pocket kings to beat Durrrr’s pocket aces.  A new record was again set but the night had yet to begin.

Phil Ivey and Juanda later got involved in a huge $687,500 hand and John was looking to cash in yet again.  However, it wasn’t to be as Ivey took all of the money (and then some) from Juanda’s previous Durrrr exchange after hitting a set of 10’s.  If you think the record stayed here, think again because there was one big hand left on the night.

This time it was Ivey against Di “urindanger” Dang and Durrrr who both were willing to stay in with Ivey until the pot reached $724,000.  And it was urindanger’s pocket aces that would win the day and the $724,000 hand.  This is where the record stands today but – with the furious betting action on October 26th – I’m sure that this total will eventually be broken too.

Bad Beat or just a Bad Play

I for one don’t like to hear people constantly whining about their bad beats on the Internet.  Everybody has them and it’s not use complaining about and cussing out the person who delivered it.  But I had one play the other night that made wonder whether I had truly received a [[Bad_beat|bad beat]] or just made a bad play.

I was playing a game of No Limit Texas Hold’em and the two hole cards that I was dealt were an A and a 10.  That was good enough for me to call the big blind and everyone else limped in.  The flop hit as A-Q-3 off suited and everybody except for me and one other person folded.

I now had top pair and didn’t really think this person stayed with Q-3 so I bet out a little.  My bet was called and the turn came around as another Q.  So I checked and the other player only placed a small bet which truly made me wonder what was going on.  Did this person have a set of queens and was just slowplaying me or did they truly have nothing and were just representing a queen.

Well I thought my answer came on the river as another queen landed making the board A-Q-3-Q-Q and making me think that there was no way in this six-handed game that the other player happened to have a queen with three of them already on the board.  I mean it’s definitely possible but the odds would really suggest otherwise.

So I put a big bet out there while the other play went all-in.  My chip stack was larger so I called not thinking they were truly holding the queen.  To my surprise though, they were holding a queen and they were also holding a four of a kind at that.

My initial thought was whether this could be declared a bad beat or just a bad play.  Most of the time, the lone player left isn’t going to stay in past the flop with a bigger overpair represented.  But this player had and they were rewarded for it.  I, on the other hand, lost quite a bit of my stack and was wondering what others at the table were thinking of the decision to stay in the hand with top pair.

If the same situation arose again, I think that I’d probably still make the same play to tell the truth.  We’ll see how it turns out when it comes up in the future.

Medium Pairs in the Middle

In poker there are many actions that are debatable.  And I would certainly throw the decision of what to do with a medium pair such as 9-9 in middle position in that equation.  Most would say that one should call with this hand as long as a tight player in early position hasn’t raised or anything.  But there is another school of thought that says to either raise or fold with such a hand.

I happen to agree with the first line of thinking in that this is a good hand to call with and see what action takes place behind me.  When I was playing a few days ago, I was in this very situation where I had a pair of nines and was pretty confident that a call would be the best decision to make.

The game was an online $5/$10 Hold’em cash game and one person called before me.  My line of thinking was that a pair of nines wasn’t going to win the hand so I should just try to see the flop as cheaply as possible.  Two players behind me called as well so no raises were made.  The four of us saw the flop come up 5c-3s-5h. 

The player in front of me folded while I checked.  One of the two players after me checked and the other one bet out.  When the action came back around to me I debated on whether to call this bet or not as, once again, I figured that two nines weren’t going to cut it and I only had a couple of outs to make my hand.  Plus, I figured that the player who bet had something like A-5 and had just hit a set.

In the end, I decided to fold and the other two people played the hand out till the end.  I was right in that the player who initially bet out after the flop was holding A-5.  And this made me question my initial decision of simply calling when I had 9-9 in middle position with no raises in front of me. 

It sort of makes me lean towards the thinking that a raise or fold is better with none out in from of me.  This way, I think I might have made the person with the A-5 fold and they never would have hit a set on the flop.   

When is Analyzing a Hand become Over-Analysis

If I had my choice, I’d much rather analyze a hand too much than to never do much analysis at all.  However, I hate when I know I’ve read too much into a hand and screwed myself out of more chips I could’ve had, or worse yet, talked myself into folding.

The other day, I was playing in the middle stages of an [[Poker_tournament|online tournament]] and sitting in middle position during a hand.  The blinds for the hand were 100-200 and I had a chip stack of 8,000.  After the hand was dealt, the first player to act raised the big blind making me think that this person had a big-time hand since they raised in first position.  However, I was sitting in middle position with pocket 10’s and, out of pure conventional poker strategy (and the need to build by dwindling chip stack), decided to call this raise after everyone folded to me.

The player on the button was the only other person to call and then the flop was dealt.  It came up: As, Kh, 10s and the first player to act bet out.  Seeing as how I had just flopped a set, I raised this bet which made the person on the button fold.  Despite my initial thinking that the first player to act had to have either A-A, K-K, Q-Q, or J-J to be betting and raising from this position, I decided that raising the bet was a must with trips.  

Unfortunately, I began to regret my decision as the first player to act re-raised me which almost had me convinced they had either A-A, or K-K.  But not letting the set go, I called their raise and the turn came up 7d which made the board: As, Kh, 10s, 7d.  Once again, the first player bet out and I simply limped in with a call leaving the river to be shown. 

The river came was shown to be nothing more than an 8c and the first player to act again bet out.  And yet again, I limped in which many people advise against but I was in a gray area at this point.  Should I let the trips go and fold just because I was convinced this person had them too or should I keep potentially wasting bets out of the hope that this person only had a pair or two-pair (I hadn’t been at the table long enough to know what kind of player this was)?  My choice was the second and it was time for the showdown.

Somewhat to my surprise, the first player only showed a pair of queens which meant my set of 10’s did the job and I collected the pot.  This person definitely was right to bet out and raise with Q’s early on and definitely was determined to keep up with this trend. 

I could’ve gotten a lot more into the pot than I did but failed to do so because of my analysis of the situation.  Maybe next time I flop a set, I won’t over think it so much.