3pips   WELL DONE MR. SOLID (G2E ASIA - MACAU 5/27/12)

 Well Done Mr. Solid

In my free time from the G2E Asia gaming-industry convention last week, I played several nice poker sessions at the Wynn Macau and at the Venetian Cotai (a Macau outer area).

I watched a really great play by a middle-aged quiet corporate guy, who I'll call Mr. Solid.

When the hand happened, the table's players had been together for hours and had seen Mr. Solid make several seemingly good folds, like open-mucking 10, 10 preflop to a big re-raise. And, as we were playing an HK$25/HK$50 no-limit Hold'em table (that's about $3/6 no limit), with many playing DEEP stacks, raises amounted to real money.  That's Macau, way different from other Asian cities I've played. BIG in Macau is often bigger than anywhere else. Many properties  - including the Venetian Cotai (where the below happened) - dwarf perhaps everything in Vegas in casino size, profitability and bankrolls played.

Sixth off the button, with everyone folded to him, Mr. Solid raised to HK$200 - four times the big-blind.  In the cutoff, a young hyper-aggressive sharp player (who'd been winning up to then) - I'll call him Young Turk, smooth called.

Both saw a Jack, 7 2 flop, which had two spades. First to act, Mr. Solid bet HK$400. He was again smooth called.

The turn brought a blank offsuit 3. Probably wanting to close out the hand, Mr. Solid bet HK$1400. Again, he got smooth called.

The river was the King of spades. Both an over-card to the board and completing the flop's obvious draw-hand.

Mr. Solid checked.  Now, Young Turk bet HK$4400, more than the pot (well over US$500).

Mr. Solid looked straight at Young Turk and said: 'That's such a bad card, an overcard and it completes the flush." As he spoke he stared into Young Turk for about 10 seconds, like he could see his soul. Then, Mr. Solid went into a minute's deep thought. Afterwards, he SAID OUT LOUD, like there'd been no long-pause: "......but you look like the kind of player who'd float on me, thinking you could get me to fold with a big river-bet, if any threat-card fell." Mr. Solid then pushes forward the HK$4400 call (about 70% of his remaining stack).

Here's the best part, Young Turk says: 'Your Jack is good,' but Mr. Solid DOESN'T open.  He waits. This forces Young Turk to muck or open his hand.

As Young Turk  holds a suited-diamonds 10-7 hand, he's forced to open, as his pair of sevens beat some hands that might've called.

Mr. Solid opens Ace, Jack offsuit and drags the BIG pot (more than US$1500).

And, by his speech and forcing Young Turk to show his cards, Mr. Solid neutralized the table's real threat-factor. Young Turk was revealed as someone with plenty of moves, but perhaps often without the cards. Entering a pot which had been significantly raised preflop, to play a non premium hand like a suited 10, 7 heads up, is suggestive of Young Turk's I'll-outplay-you swagger. That approach only works until you're outed.

Shown up as a guy with more moves than a snake, Young Turk cashed out slightly down, with half the chips he'd had in Mr. Solid's stack. I for one was glad to see Young Turk go. Well done Mr. Solid!

- E. Mark the "e-Shark" Gross