Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Talk About Downswings

So I'm glad to say that today went pretty much as planned. I woke up around 2:00. Here we go again cycling through the day. When you have no obligations, and never have anywhere to be, you tend to (or at least I do) stay up until you're tired, and wake up when you're not tired anymore. For me, that total time adds up to more than 24 hours. Thus, I live longer, but fewer days than the rest of you. So tomorrow I'll sleep later, and later the next day, until I'm literally going to bed in the morning, when most of you have been up for a few hours already, and waking up in time to catch Leno. It's pretty sick.

So I got up, watched my Dr. Phil, then headed out. I had to buy more Solo cups because I forgot to on Sunday when I went shopping, and more bread because mine was getting moldy, so I had to throw it out. After that I went to the gym.

I kind of slacked it I guess, because I wanted to be home by 4:00 so I could play the $11 rebuy. Usually I run 1.5-2 miles at the "5" or "5.5" speed. Today I ran a little less than a mile for about fifteen minutes, but I pushed it up to a 7. I still managed to break a good sweat, which like I said, is all I'm going for. I came home and started playing feeling like I had done something, and not like I had just rolled out of bed.

Tomorrow night I have basketball practice at 8. This is my second season coaching my brother's rec team with my mom. I used to play in the league when I was in high school, and it was a lot of fun. Even though it's rec, it is still a pretty competitive league. The guy that runs our age group keeps stats on points, 3-pointers made, team free throw percentage, and league standings. There is playoffs and a championship at the end of the season. It's good that they have somewhat gotten rid of the "everyone just have fun mentality" and made it more competitive for the high school boys. At that age, they want to know who is the best, and it's more fun for them with the playoff structure and stat sheets the league director passes out each week. Last year we got to the championship of the double elimination playoffs. The team we were playing was undefeated, and we had already lost one game in the post season. We won the first game, and lost the second one by three. I can't wait to get there again this year, and this time win it.

We have a good team this year. I was able to go to the coaches meeting at the beginning of the year, since my mom couldn't make it. This year they made a change for the better and decided to go with one more team so each team has 9 or 10 kids, instead of 11 or 12. We volunteered to be one of the teams with nine. It's better because the kids get more playing time. So far we are in a two or three way tie for first with a 4-2 record. We really should be undefeated. One game we lost by one point, and the other we only had five kids show up for the game. That game, the first quarter was a one point differential, we slipped to being down by nine at the half, and by the second half, our guys were just too exhausted. Furthermore, we had some of our "B" guys on the court at the same time as their best "A" players. In this league, they designate the freshman and sophomores as the "B" squad, and the juniors and seniors as the "A" squad. This keeps players the same size and ability playing with one another, and keeps the game fair. The B squad plays the first and third quarters, and the A squad plays the second and fourth quarters.

Tomorrow night at practice, I'm going to be running the show exclusively for a little while, since my brother has to close at his new job, which is at 8. My mom is picking him up and bringing him over after. I think he's going to miss most of practice. We'll see. I want to go over a few things with the guys. Two of them were not at last weeks practice when we learned two new inbound plays. They were both a little clueless as to what was going on when we tried to run the plays in game. I drew the plays out on paper when they came out of the game, but I want them to practice running the plays so it will be second nature to them for the rest of the season.

Last week we practiced good defense. I tried to show them how to slow and contain their man by just staying in front of him with their hands up. When the shot goes up at the end, I stressed the importance of putting your arms straight up tall and altering their opponent's shot, as opposed to swinging and trying to stuff the ball right back in the guy's face. As long as they make him miss, that's all that matters. We get too many stupid fouls going for the emphatic swat. We did alright this week with that, but I want to go over that again. I'm also going to draw up and practice running a "keep away play." I think we could do a better job of controlling the pace of the game when it gets down to crunch time and we have a bit of a lead. I want to show them how to just pass it around and keep the number of possessions low, so we can maintain our leads late in the game. Saturday we're playing a team with two very good guards who play both A and B. Other than that I think we can handle them, but we will have to contain both of them and not have too many turnovers when they pressure us on offense.

So now for my least favorite part of today's entry, poker. Blah blah blah. What else can I say? 20 MTTs played today, and not one in the money finish. Not one. Pathetic. I got close in a couple of them but it was still one of my worst days ever. Lost about $600.

The MTTs played today include: 2 $20 180 player SNGs,
4:00 $8 and $11 rebuy
5:00 $50 25k guarantee
5:15 $16.50 360 max entrants
6:00 $5 rebuy
6:15 $5 shorthanded
7:00 $109 25k guarantee, $11 20k guarantee, and some freeroll
7:15 $7 PLHE (360 max entrants) $11 1 rebuy 1 add-on
8:00 $27.50 $25k guarantee and $3 rebuy
8:15 $55 shorthanded
9:00 $5, $22 rebuy
9:15 $9 360 max
9:30 $55 50k guarantee
10:00 $16.50

I did get some interesting hands. The first one is my bust out hand from the $8 4:00 EST freezeout. We were ending the first hour, and I had almost tripled my starting stack. I was up to about 4200. With blinds at 50-100, I was sitting in the big blind with AsJd. One early and middle position player limped. The button made an outrageously large raise to 1100. Now maybe a few orbits earlier, the same guy shoved all in for over 4,000 with the same blinds, and showed down A 9 off suit. So I thought I had a tough decision. If this guy is willing to put in over 40 big blinds with A 9 off, AJ could easily have his range beat. He clearly isn't going to fold, so I didn't know whether to shove this guy or not. I almost folded but then decided that he was too much of a donk, so I shoved in and he called instantly with JJ. Oops. GG Me. I suppose folding there would probably be better and most would consider it a no-brainer, but I thought against that donk it was pretty close.

I don't hate the way I got eliminated from the $55 25k guarantee at 5 PM EST. One guy two to my right limps in middle position for I think 150. I assume I am ahead with A 8, and make it 550. I got one caller behind, and the limper called. The flop was about as good as it gets for A 8 o/s, 8 2 3 rainbow. The limper checked, I bet about 3/4 pot, the other guy folded, and the limper instantly shoved. I called almost just as fast. He flipped 99, gg me again. I was surprised he didn't raise 99 in middle position, in which case I would have folded. I still like my call there because I think he is definitely raising TT+ preflop. I think I'm more likely to see worse 8s (89, T8 suited) and smaller pairs, 44-77 there a lot more often than I will see an overpair. So whatever, shrug that one off.

The $20 rebuy is the one I was most disappointed with. I ended the rebuy period with over 20,000 in chips. I was easily the chip leader at my table, and 6th overall in the tournament. I didn't even take the add-on, I was so huge, and I ALWAYS take the add-on. So a hand came up during the first level after re-buys ended. One player UTG limped, and a player to my right with about 13,000 made it 600. I called with 9dTd hoping to flop big and snap him off. Two others called, and we took the flop 4 ways. The flop was great for me, 4d7d8c. I had flopped two over cards to the board, an openended straight draw, and a flush draw. The preflop raiser bet over 1500, and it was obvious to me he liked his hand. My draw was too powerful not to play aggressively. I raised to 6200, committing his whole stack to the hand if he wanted to continue. He used his entire time bank before pushing in with QQ. I obviously bricked and my once proud stack was down to about 5,000 and below average. I would up making a hero call a few hands later with 23 on a 2 QQ 10 5 board against The_D_Ry, who is a well known successful player. He had 22 for a flopped full house. It was a bad call I guess but I was so frustrated that I had lost such a big stack. I think that's a leak in my game that I need to fix. Even when you get down, stay focused on the situation at hand and don't give up.

I busted out of a few others pushing weak-middle aces against minraises. Some will tell you never to push bad aces, but I just never give minraisers credit. I think most aces are ahead of a minraisers range, especially from middle-late position. Two broadway cards make up most of that range in my experiences. So I usually reshove 10-20ish BB stacks, because I think it's a good way to chip up.

So overall this day hurt on the poker front, but I have been keeping a bigger bankroll lately so I can absorb blows like this one and come back in the following days and recover without having to move down. Tomorrow I won't play because of basketball, but I think I will spend some time watching the videos on PokerXFactor, which I haven't been doing as much of lately. They have been bringing in all new guest pros, which is cool. I just finished watching the $100 rebuy win by AJKHoosier1. Tomorrow I will probably watch the $100 rebuy win by uclabruinz.

Until Then,

Today's artists added to iTunes:
3 Doors Down
98 Degrees
Dire Straits
Marc Anthony
Smash Mouth
Smashing Pumpkins

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