02 February 2006

Scotty and Quick Trip

Saw Scotty Nguyen and his wife in Atlanta airport as I was on my way to a flight to Lexington. Looking good, baby!

I was able to sneak a quick trip to Belterra Casino in Indiana. Waited three hours to get on the one NLHE, so I played $3/6 and had a good time. Worked hard to triple up but ended up $150 for the session. Had a sweet capped pot pre-flop where I flopped a set of 8's with that as the high card on board. Q on the river caused a little concern but I got paid off for a nice pot. Alot of seven and eight hand limped pots, but all in all a nice time. Very small room (six tables, three active). Got to get on the plane, so I'm outta here.

ADDENDUM: That was a rushed, quick post as I was in the airport as the plane was boarding. I had some advertising boards in this huge metal carrying case, so I had to make sure I could get overhead storage to put it on.

One thing I think most of us overlook that was interesting with my Belterra session: playing poker to have fun. At least for me, much of poker is either online (where there is no interaction with anyone) or at stakes that are relatively meaningful. This requires concentration and focus, which one can argue takes some of the fun out of play. Playing lower stakes in live play can really be refreshing for several reasons. First, it is a bit nostalgic, remembering the first $4/8 tables that I played during business trips in Phoenix at Casino Arizona. Hopefully none of us are grizzled enough to have forgotten those first sessions of panic, bewilderment, of rebuying another rack of white chips. Another trait is the interesting collection of players found in a low-stakes game. There are two types of younger guys: the college guy and the slacker dude. You have the retiree middle-class guys. In the 10s is the old fart with a snaggle tooth. One of the best parts of low-stakes play is playing sporadically looser. With so many limpers, any pre-flop raise is a cold call or three-bet, almost regardless of your hand. Regardless of pre-flop betting, it was hard to get rid of most hands pre-flop. Any gapped or connected cards, most sooted cards, any ace; raising with a couple of limpers and any cards, any suited face cards, any pair. It was interesting to see when I could simply take down pots in limit regardless of cards, when I could take pots playing marginal hands and rags. Finally, chasing is always fun in limit, although it sucks on the other side of the table. Hearing the logic of AhJc staying in a capped pot with an ace and two hearts on the board with his runner-runner nut flush coming is never easy to hear, regardless.
All of this to say low-stakes should be a regular part of everyone's poker portfolio. I think it will keep the fun in poker for me, which can only improve your overall play.


Blogger Mark said...

Cool. I've heard the Indiana casinos are just amazingly fishy.

1:37 PM  
Blogger cc said...

Hard to tell, more with just the limited amount of play. If I would have played in the NLHE, I'd have a better assessment. I like to sneak in play whenever I can, so I'll take it.

5:57 PM  

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