Wednesday, October 24, 2007

A Scenario

For some reason, I was thinking back to a live game I played earlier this year when I was at the River Rock in Vancouver. At the time, I posted about the table, how card dead I was, etc.. I'm curious on how you'd play this table.

It's a 10-person 200NL cash game, you're in seat 6. The players are:

1 - A rock. Doesn't speak much, TAG. If he starts talking, you're in trouble
2 - Mouth-breather. Baseball cap on loose and sideways, jaw slack, glazed eyes, a bit of drool. Screams moron and plays like one.
3 - Decent player. Will play pairs, connectors, suited aces and kings. Will fold.
4 - Weak-loose. Willing to see a lot of flops, but folds to any scare card. Has chips from catching a couple hands. Not nearly as good at reads as he thinks he is.
5 - Pathetic aggression. Tosses chips in trying to scare off opponents. Everyone knows he's full of crap. Everything about screams he's full of crap. Plus his not-as-cute-as-he-hopes girlfriend is constantly standing at his shoulder.
6 - Hero
7 - LAG. Straddles every time he's UTG. Talks a lot. Will hammer you with bets if he has a hand or not. Unlike 5, you never know if he's full of it or not.
8 - ABC poker. Bets with medium-big pairs, protects on flops.
9 - Big stack. Plays just like 7, and in fact seems to be his friend. He's had a good night with at least 4 buy-ins in front of him.
10 - Very much like 1. Rock, quiet, solid.

There is no way short of all-in that you're winning pre-flop. Winning on the flop is also unlikely. In fact, most hands will go to the river without SEVERE aggression, but you won't necessarily see a showdown.

Obviously 2, 3, 4, 5, and 8 are easy marks. 1 and 10 can be avoided. However, either 7 or 9 will be in every hand and playing hard. You bet, they'll re-raise. You re-raise they'll call and bet hard on the next card. They have the chips to make it matter.

Now the final bit - you are absolutely card dead. In two hours your best hand is pocket 3s. Next comes ATs. The only hand you have that catches anything is a Q8o that flops a straight, but you threw it away pre-flop becuase 3 players were in before you with bets and raises. You've got garbage, and NONE of it catches anything.

So a mixed table with just about the whole range of players, and you have no cards. Two LAGs to your left, and most of the easy players to your right. What do you do?

I think the best way to play is to request a table change. At the very least, a seat change to 2. The whole experience taught me something about the importance of position and table-selection. You can win with no cards, but not if you can't get people to fold.

What do you think?

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