When should you quit a good game?

by Lou on January 21, 2007

When should you quit a good game?

That’s a time-honored question and everyone has his or her own opinion, something that works best in their individual circumstance.

I’m here in Las Vegas for the Poker Author’s Tournament at Binion’s (and if you’re in town, it starts at noon today, with the event being broadcast by www.holdemradio.com, and a buy-one-book, get one free special promotion) but the last few days I’ve been playing poker at the Wynn.

Four archetypical yuppies from New York City were playing in the game the other night, flush with money, bound and determined to gamble, and drinking like bars were going out of business. Every pot was raised, and most were three bet. One of the yuppies occasionally made it three bets to go before the flop without even looking at his cards.

Needless to say, it was a high variance, but very good game. “Juicy” is the word that describes it best.

I played solid, straightforward poker against these guys and was up $1,200 in short order. Not from my own brilliance, mind you, but from their overly aggressive, alcohol-fueled playing style. On one hand, I was reraised before the flop and flopped a set of kings. One of the yuppies bet the turn, I raised, and was reraised by a player with neither straight draw nor flush draw — and, as it turned out later — all he had was second pair. It was that kind of game.

The only downside to this incredible opportunity was that I was tired. Dead tired. I tried playing on autopilot and felt like I was doing OK until one of the yuppies seated to my left went down to the felt and asked to buy $800 in chips from me. I started to hand him eight stacks of ten-dollar chips instead of four, when we both caught it simultaneously.

That was my alarm bell. I walked away, came back to the table and cashed out. If I’m too tired to accurately count my own chips, I’m too tired to play.

Still, I keep thinking about that game and wishing I were more alert. But that was it for me. I stuffed my profit in my jeans and quit the game.

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