Friday, April 06, 2007

Coaching Rules

I had a free coaching session Thursday night with a 2+2 small stakes player, Novles, and it went quite well. He observed me playing a couple tables at Party for about 45 minutes or so and took notes on my play which we discussed afterwards. I relayed hole card information to him over AIM while he watched and otherwise we did not interact during the hands being played. I had to fight the urge to play more like I thought a 2+2'r would think I should play and keep to my normal game in order to maximize my benefit out of the session but it was definitely a bit odd to have someone watching me play for the purpose of critical discussion about my play.

On the bright side, he thought I played quite well, which is a nice confidence booster. On the bad side, it was one of those sessions where lots of things just go right so there weren't many sticky situations for us to discuss. When I whiffed flops, I was taking it down with a c-bet. In multi-way whiffed pots when I didn't c-bet the flop, a delayed c-bet on the turn was working. Almost all of my draws came in and in at least one case, I missed my draw but was still good. Actually, this was a crazy hand: I cold called a pre-flop raise from a very active player while holding ATs on the button and both of the short-stacked blinds also called. The flop came K53 with 2 of my suit, the sb pushed all in for $9, the bb called with $3 behind, the initial pre-flop raiser folded and I sat there trying to figure out what to do. Not sure why I had to think about it really, pushed the bb all in and then watched the cards roll off without another heart hitting and figured I would watch the pot get pushed to one of the blinds and had to do a triple-take when my Ace-high won the pot. It turned out that the sb had pushed all in with A6s with a back door flush draw and the bb had called all in with Q8s for the flush draw I had dominated with the Ace.

Anyway, we discussed some of the hands afterwards and apparently I had only made one major mistake in calling a 3-bet with a small pocket pair plus missed a couple value betting opportunities. We talked about a few specific situations where I wasn't quite sure I had made the right play and how the play would have changed given different variables. It was a good experience to get some insight from a more experienced player and I hope to have another session with him.

After taking a break for a bit, I fired up a couple tables again later and by the end of the night found myself up almost 5buy ins. Having cleared another reload bonus at Party, I wandered back to Paradise Friday night to continue working on the remaining bonus there and by the end of the night found myself up another 5 buy ins again. Gotta love the upside of variance and a nice bounce back from the slow start to the month.


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