Crushing the $3/$6 tables

It being his birthday, I’m going to give my buddy Chris Hannigan an unusual present.  I’m going to freely admit now that in the past, when I said, "You can’t make money at $3/$6 limit poker", I was full of crap.  Chris always disagreed with me. 

I dropped down to the $3/$6 tables the other night when I couldn’t get a seat at the $6/$12 tables and ran into a hot deck of cards that I knew how to play well.  I really have, for years, said that $3/$6 couldn’t beat the rake, but that’s really code for "it’s hard for good hands to live until the river".  Which is entirely true.  You may have a set on the flop, but someone with a gutshot straight draw will call you all the way down with their four outs.

So I made a lot of money that session, but I have no illusions that betting a made hand hard to the river with two, three, or four callers is mentally healthy.  Lots of hands will get cracked over time, I just happened to get lucky that night.  What I really appreciated was that the mistakes at that level stand out so well, that I really enjoyed cataloging them and was able to keep multiple player profiles in my head.

(As an aside, I think I saw someone take chips off the table again, but I didn’t catch him in the act, so I kept my mouth shut)

Some of the mistakes I saw at this level included:

  1. Drawing without sufficient pot odds
  2. Playing a made hand without being able to read the board and realize there are lots of other better potential made hands out there
  3. Never releasing big pairs
  4. Not seeing three cards of the same suit on the board (flush) and betting anyway
  5. Not taking into account another player’s tightness/looseness

I have to say, it’s much more enjoyable studying my opponents when I’m winning money than when I’m losing it. And yet after about 3 hours I found myself getting tired and playing my cards mechanically, so I left.

I think I’ll stay down here a while.