Ugh.  Well that really sucked.  Played for 3 hours last night until busting out which kinda sums up everything right there.  I was getting dealt fairly decent initial hands such as 67, 89, 9-10, AJ, AQ, KJ, KQ, 22, 55, 66, 10-10, etc but I wasn’t connecting with anything on the flop.  $6-8 here and there to see a flop adds up over time and not winning any hands starts to hurt.  When my stack was down to about $130, I topped up with another $60 cause I like playing a full stack – maximize those wins, right?  Right after that, I took a small loss on a small hand that I knew I got outdrawn on – what the hell, Carlos??  So back to playing patient…  Again, same decent hole cards but no connections on the flop.

I did pick up AQ in medium position and raised to $6 in the unopened pot.  Sort of a small out of position raise to get some more money in the pot pre-flop.  With myself and 5 callers, the flop was A-J-x with 2 clubs and $30 in the pot.  Finally, top pair!  Best hand yet!  I lead out and bet $18 to see where I’m at.  I know AJ could be out there and certainly someone could be drawing to a club flush.  Everyone folds but two people on my left.  Ahh how I hate being out of position!  Turn is a brick and I figure one of them has to be drawing to clubs.  The pot is now about $84 and being first to act, I want to bet enough that anyone chasing the flush will lose interest in the hand so I bet $40.  The first guy on my left thinks a bit and folds which makes me happy if he was chasing and the second guy thinks a bit and calls.  I still feel that I’m ahead at this point – just no club on the river!  River: a club.  Pretty much the only card I did not want to see.

Not quite sure if this guy was chasing or not but I do have a feeling that betting here isn’t the best idea but checking here isn’t the best idea either.  I figure that if I check, he’ll bet it representing the flush just to scare me off – but maybe he’ll check it out down too as the pot was already pretty big… So I check.  No surprise when he bets enough that puts me all-in for my last $60-something.

So what to do..what to do.  This guy seemed a bit loose with big bets before.  One other player at the table even referred to him as a “shover”.  Plus, he had lost a good chunk of his stack on a previous hand and looked a bit annoyed about that.  I also would not put it past him to represent the flush just to scare me out of the hand.

With all of those reasons, my gut instinct was to call and hope he had missed some other draw, so I called.  I ask if he has the flush and he shows 2-3 of clubs and wins the pot.  Wow.  2-3 of clubs.  One step above total garbage.  I still don’t really get why he would call $40 after the turn to see a river card when his only draw was to the flush – and the lowest possible flush at that!  With his call on the turn, he got 3:1 on his money ($120:$40) on odds that are at best about 4.5:1.  I didn’t have a whole lot more money left so it seems a bit odd to risk $40 just to win another $60 after that.  I could understand if the other player had called as well giving much better odds on the money and having more money to win but just heads-up with not a lot of extra money and holding the lowest flush possible just doesn’t make sense.

I’m not calling the guy a bad player but that’s a pretty loose, gambling call on the turn, in my opinion.  So that busted me out of my initial $200 and my $60 top-up.  On the bright-side, $175 of that was money from my poker bankroll that was all prior winning money and only $85 was out of pocket.  Unfortunately that wipes out my bankroll and it was a lot of money to lose in one night – more that I’ve lost in a night before.  It looks like my experiment at Regent to build up my bankroll has failed all due to a really wacky call that just doesn’t make sense.  If you have some thoughts you’d like to share, please leave a comment.

Overall holiday poker results: $-300

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