Poker Coverage: Poker Tournaments Casino News Sports Betting Poker Strategy

Online Poker: Play a Tournament with Adam 'Roothlus' Levy Part II

Get Inside Levy's Head for the Final Hands of the Tournament


This is Part II of an interview with Adam “Roothlus” Levy regarding key hands that he played in the PokerStars $200 rebuy tournament that he eventually won. Please refer to Part I for the previous hands in this interview.

Hand No. 356

Info Blinds: 3,500-7,000 with 700 ante Seven-handed  
Player Adam “Roothlus” Levy exposabre sacker
Stack 230,608 175,017 134,866
Hand A K ?-? ?-?

Adam 'Roothlus' LevyAction folds to Roothlus in mid-position, and he raises to 16,250. Exposabre calls on the button, and sacker calls from the small blind. The flop comes 9 3 2. Sacker checks, Roothlus bets 37,500, exposabre folds, and sacker folds after using some of his time bank.

AL: Interesting hand here. Given exposabre’s stack, I know he likes to see a fair amount of flops with Broadway cards and might be set-mining here, but he probably isn’t going much further than that with those pairs. Sacker is pretty tight, but I would hope he would be shoving pocket sevens-plus here, although he could be set-mining with the rest, as well.

It’s just a weird spot. The flop is kind of weak. I have the A, so I know no one has the ace-high flush draw, at least. My overcards could still be best, and sacker can’t be super strong here. I thought about this continuation-bet for like 10 seconds before I made it because I was trying to decide whether it was a profitable continuation bet or not. People think that you’re supposed to continuation bet all of the time, but in this spot, I actually had to think this one through.

There’s always a chance that expo has aces, but I felt like it was a good time to take the chance. Expo quickly folded what I’m assuming were Broadway cards, but sacker thought for a good 30 seconds. I know sacker grinds high stakes limit, so I know what he is doing, and I did not feel good about it when he started thinking. But, luckily, he folded. I’m really not sure what he had, possibly 4-4 or 5-5, and maybe even an ace high of some sort, thinking I would fold to a shove, which I would’ve, but I highly doubt that, because sacker is very tight.

[Laughs] As I’m scrolling down my hand history, sacker busted two hands later, and says this in the chat, but I didn’t see it at the time:

sacker [observer] said, “YO ROOTH 77 ANY GOOD LAST HAND?”

Yes, sacker, 7-7 was good, but thank you for folding. Regardless, it was a tough spot for him facing a big bet into two other players.

Hand No. 367

Info Blinds: 3,500-7,000 with 700 ante Five-handed
Player Matt “All_in_at420” Stout Adam “Roothlus” Levy
Stack 121,808 295,308
Hand A K 10 10

All_in_at420 pushes all in from under the gun for 121,108, and Roothlus makes the call from immediately to All_in_at420’s left. All_in_at420 shows A K and Roothlus tables 10 10. The board runs out J 9 3 Q 5, and Roothlus takes down the pot to eliminate All_in_at420.

AL: Kind of a big ship by All_in, but perfectly fine. I wasn’t thrilled about calling here but was expecting something like pocket sixes to pocket nines. Stomach turned a little when I saw A-K offsuit, but, luckily, my hand held up.

SPG: Why just a call, though? Why not raise to isolate? Why not re-ship?

AL: No one is ever going to flat-call. Sooners, exposabre, they’re never going to flat-call with a random hand, there. They’re either going to shove or fold. So, I don’t necessarily need to commit those chips, and if, by chance, I need to commit those chips, it’s very unfortunate, but I can make that decision at that point.

SPG: Would you actually fold, there, with more than one-third of your stack in the pot?

AL: This might have actually been one of the toughest spots I could get myself into. I’d have to believe that the other players would only shove jacks-plus or A-K and would never shove A-Q. So, there are a lot of chips in the pot, but I don’t know if they’d even feel comfortable shoving A-K; it’s a really sick spot. So, maybe I should shove in the future so that I don’t have to think about this spot, but I’d rather think about this spot and have the opportunity to fold, if need be.

Hand No. 400

Info Blinds: 4,000-8,000 with 800 ante Three-handed
Player Russ “Sooners” Floyd Adam “Roothlus” Levy
Stack 236,154 467,186
Hand Q 7 K 3

Sooners raises to 20,100 from the small blind, and Roothlus calls in the big blind. The flop comes K Q 5, and Sooners leads out with a bet of 24,000. Roothlus raises to 64,000, and Sooners pushes all in for 215,254. Roothlus calls and shows K 3 for top pair. Sooners turns over Q 7 for second pair. The turn and river bring the 4 and 10, and Sooners is eliminated from the tournament.

AL: While Sooners had not been very aggressive on my big blind when he was in the small blind, he gave me good odds to call with an OK hand on the big blind. He made a smallish continuation-bet, but, at this point, top pair is like the nuts when it is small blind versus big blind, so I am never folding. The only thing I can do is make my raise as fishy as possible to get him to shove lighter than normal against me. So, I made it 40K on top of the 24K, which was barely even three times his initial bet. I liked the bet because it still looked to him like he had fold equity to shove whatever he would shove in here. He shipped, I snap-called, and my hand held, and now we were heads up. For what its worth, I think Sooners is a great player, but in this hand I probably would’ve check-called the flop here and reevaluated on the turn.

Hand No. 404

Info Blinds: 4,000-8,000 with 800 ante Heads-up
Player Adam “Roothlus” Levy exposabre
Stack 731,440 668,060
Hand Q Q 7 5

Exposabre calls in the small blind, and Roothlus raises to 24,000. Exposabre calls, and the flop comes K 9 8. Roothlus bets 33,500, exposabre raises to 67,000, and Roothlus calls. The turn brings the 9, and both players check. The river is the 4, Roothlus checks, exposabre bets 104,000, and Roothlus calls. Exposabre shows 7 5 for missed flush and gutshot-straight draws, and Roothlus’ pair of queens, along with the board pair, are enough to take down the pot.

AL: This was only the third hand of heads up, and we were pretty close in chips. I got queens on the big blind and pop it up to three times the blind after he limped. He called in position. I made a standard continuation-bet here, but I am not thrilled about the flop. He min-raises my bet. I’m not sure what he is trying to represent here, but I wasn’t sold on him having a king yet. The turn pairs the 9, and, to be honest, I thought a 9 was very well within his range on the flop.

Had he made a substantial bet here, it would have been a very tough decision. I might’ve even given him credit here and folded. Once he checked the turn, I just wanted to get to showdown after a useless 4 hit the river. Then he made this huge bet on the river. While the 9 still could be in his range, as well as the king, I really wasn’t buying the king after he min-raised the flop and checked the turn. A-9 was definitely possible here. In fact, I will play a 9 like this a fair amount of the time, but more times than not, I’m betting the turn here with trip nines. It already looks shady that I min-raised the flop, so I might get a light call-down, or if he has a king, I can probably get a decent-sized bet on the turn and river in, as well.

So, after thinking all this through, I reluctantly called, and he had busted gutshot-straight and flush draws. I was very lucky he did not get there with his draw, but he had an opportunity on the turn to take the pot away from me, and he didn’t. This pot gave me a substantial lead heads up and all of the momentum.

Hand No. 415

Info Blinds: 5,000-10,000 with 800 ante Heads-up
Player Adam “Roothlus” Levy exposabre
Stack 1,158,240 241,260
Hand J 10 9 7

Roothlus raises to 20,000 from the small blind, and exposabre calls. The flop comes 9 7 5, and exposabre checks. Roothlus bets 28,500, and exposabre check-raises to 70,000. Roothlus pushes all in for 1,137,240, and exposabre calls all in for 150,260. Roothlus tables J 10 for both a flush draw and a gutshot-straight draw, and exposabre flips over 9 7for top two pair. The turn is the 3 and the river is the J, giving Roothlus a flush to take down the final pot of the tournament.

AL: I hit a pretty big draw, and because we were heads up, I considered the 10-high heart draw to be good, so I wasn’t going anywhere in this pot. Once he check-raised the flop, I really didn’t think I had fold equity here, but if he had top pair with a lower heart, or no heart, I was a favorite in the hand, so it was time to get there! Unfortunately, he flipped over top two, which meant I had two fewer outs, but still 13 clean outs, provided he didn’t boat up on the turn. He didn’t, and I got there on the river to take down to the tourney — and ship the $50K! As far as the heads-up match was concerned, we played 15 hands and I won 14 of them, with him taking down the blinds on the second hand of heads up. I then proceeded to win 13 hands in a row [laughs]. I’d say that’s called running good.

SPG: It’s kind of a small point, but I wanted to talk about the preflop min-raise to 20,000. What are you doing with that? You aren’t expecting a fold, so is it just a pot-builder? And are you really building a pot with J-10 offsuit?

AL: I have a lot of ammo with my chips, more than 111 big blinds. I can build a pot slowly in position with a good hand. He’s just putting himself in position to let me take him off of a lot of hands, because he kept playing pots out of position. I like min-raising heads up, actually; it makes things more involved. A lot of times you make it three times the big blind and they’ll call less of the time; it’s just hard to really get anything going. This way, you can play more flops and get more chances to outplay people.

SPG: Thanks for doing this interview, Adam.

Tags: poker beat