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Memorable Poker Hands
Me vs. The Environment

by Paul Kammen - July 2006

In early position, I raised, and got three callers. The flop came A-K-Q. First act, I bet. The player to my left calls. The third player folds. The Turn brings the 2 of Diamonds. I bet, and the player to my left raises. I re-raise; he re-raises, I raise it up again, he raises it up again, and finally I call, thinking something might be up.

The River brings another diamond, but the board doesnt pair. I check, he bets, I call, and he flips over the JT. This didnt cost me a tournament, but it did cost me a stack. Unfortunately, I didnt put the player on JT but instead a smaller set. I should have realized something was up when he didnt bang away on the flop, but instead got focused on my Aces.

While you must play aggressively to be a long-term winner, you also have to be on guard for plays that dont make sense. Even a low-stakes player isnt likely to see the turn with pocket deuces, and players flopping a set nearly always play them fast, so fireworks on the flop would have indicated a set of Queens or Kings, and this move from the Chan playbook should have hit me sooner than it did.


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