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What they call variance

This hand happened to me the other day. Playing $0.25/$0.50 no limit cash game. I just joined and have about $50 in front of me. The other players have me covered. Early limper followed by a minimum raise. I have 3♣3♠. My plan is pretty simple: call and hope for a 3 on the flop. So, I call. Except that someone behind me makes another small reraise. Ordinarily, that’s a fold. Except that the other two players call and this is one of those weak tables where people like to see flops with garbage. That situation and the odds means I’m calling. And the flop comes:


I’d call that a good flop. The two guys in front of me check. I check. Then, a beautiful thing happens. Guy behind me bets. The original limper re-raises. And the original minimum raiser shoves all his money in the pot. Perfect. I get all my money in and guy who raised on the flop gets all in too. A perfect spot for more than tripling my money. Cards are flipped over and one guy has a flush draw and the guy who shoved his money in has A♥9♥. Imagine my surprise when the turn and river come 9♣9♠.

Getting it all in when you’re a 99.9% favorite and losing to runner – runner. That hand still wakes me up at night. But that’s why it’s gambling.

19 Responses to “What they call variance”

  1. mike w. Says:

    wow, now that is a bad beat!

  2. RobertM Says:


  3. CTone Says:

    And that is why I do not play poker for money. I always get good cards, but someone always gets great cards and takes me out.

  4. Shepherd K. Says:

    That’s cold. Had that been a live table, gun’s might have been drawn.

  5. Gunmart Says:

    Well, thats what they call online poker.

    You would never see that happen in real life, but they juice the deck for that online stuff so things like that will happen and it will make for more exciting play.

    It is a business after all, and you have to remember that their goal is not to replicate actual poker gameplay. Their goal is to give people a reason to spend more time on their site playing. The more exciting the experience the more people will play, and the more people play the more they can grow their business.

  6. SayUncle Says:

    I’ve lost to runners in live play.

  7. Gunmart Says:

    I’ve lost to runners in live play.

    Oh course it happens, but the statistical probability of what you told above is pretty darn low. I’m just saying that online poker seems to tweak the odds a bit.

    I’ve seen low probability stuff happen with pretty good regularity online…. much more often then when sitting at an actual table pushing around actual cards around

  8. SayUncle Says:

    Maybe but also you see a lot more hands on line.

  9. Gunmart Says:

    Very true

  10. John A Says:

    Related, sort of –
    I just watched an old episode of Maverick. He ended up with a king-high straight – but lost to a pair of nines.

    The woman with the pair showed that “According to Hoyle” straights are invalid poker hands in five-card stud unless agreed to before play begins.

  11. Paul B Says:

    Not enough to do those odds. To have 4 threes and 4 nines in what was a 14 card count is pretty high. I’ve never trusted computer card wieghting systems. It seems you see hands that just never occur in the real world.

    I remember a time me and my brothers where playing penny ante and two of use had royal flushes ( out of three hands ). Turned out we had shuffled up a pinochle deck instead of the standard 4 suit deck.

  12. Sol Says:

    Wow SayUncle, I didn’t know you were a NLHE player. I love the gun nut/poker nut combination!

  13. MHinGA Says:

    So you were in middle-to-late position with 33, there was a limp and a raise in front of you, and players to act behind you– none of which you had any information about? Yes, your implied odds were high when you initially got involved, but a quiet fold would have been the play here– your long term EV on a flat call under these circumstances is negative, IMO.

    It doesn’t matter that you first got a highly improbably flop, followed by an even more improbably turn and river; you shouldn’t have been involved in the hand.

  14. MHinGA Says:

    Oops. for some reason I typed “improbable” and the computer morphed it to “improbably.”

  15. SayUncle Says:

    you shouldn’t have been involved in the hand.

    Some times I fold there. Sometimes not. I don’t see how anyone could fold the next raise since it was just over a min raise, called by others, and my call closed out the action. YMMV

  16. MHinGA Says:

    Once you were in for the initial raise, the hand pretty much played itself for you, including calling the reraise after the two in front of you flat called.

    Look, there’s no HUGE problem with our initial call with only $50 at stake, as long as you understand that you really are gambling with a negative long-term EV but potentially a big short-term win if you hit your set. What actually happened is bizarre, to say the least.

    One thing I like to do with four or five others in a pot when I flop a “lock” such as quads is actually to bet out in stead of checking as you did– in essence, bluffing a bluff–somebody is sure NOT to believe you, which can lead to a big pot. Try it out. Of course, sometimes a lock is not a lock, but you get the idea.

  17. MHinGA Says:

    Sorry, either my keyboard or my typing is f$#%ing up.

  18. bwm Says:

    In after “online poker is rigged”

    Brutal beat.

    I saw a PLO hand once where quad kings was the third best hand behind 89TJQs and TJQKAs. That’s probably the sickest thing I’ve seen to date.

  19. Frank Says:

    wow, my favorite gunblogger is a player? heard of 2+2?

Remember, I do this to entertain me, not you.

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