Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Well, I was going to post the hand... but naw. Nobody wants to hear a bad beat story. Let alone a drawn-out one. So here's a short one :)

All-in, set of 3's on the flop. Board pairs 5's on the turn (full boat)... board TRIPS 5's on the river, pocket 9's out-boats me. I go home 41st in the DADI re-buy. Nice Hand 23skidoo... vengeance will be mine!

Oh look, he posted the hand on his blog. What a jerk :). Naw, I've got no hard feelings towards anyone who isn't an ass when they whup me. Here's hoping he can do something good with my chips.

**Update: He went out in 20th, but my chips lived on, and eventually won! (think about that for a second).

I take solace in the fact that I had ZERO re-buys. I figured I'd give the "don't re-buy right away" philosophy, and it worked out well, as I was 2nd in chips at the break (around 16,500 or an M of about 73). I did do the add-on.. so grand total in this one was $10.50... far less than the $50+ some people put in. Overall, it was one of the most fun events I've played in.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

What Are the Odds?

Take a look at his hand:

PokerStars Game #5638588316: Tournament #28397769, $15+$1 Hold'em No Limit -
Match Round I, Level I (10/20) - 2006/07/22 - 00:49:55 (ET)
Table '28397769 1' 10-max Seat #8 is the button
Seat 2: ditch15 (1430 in chips)
Seat 3: daveddd14 (1300 in chips)
Seat 4: kksnake56 (1490 in chips)
Seat 5: slinger3 (1470 in chips)
Seat 6: ratatosk (1460 in chips)
Seat 7: devboy88 (3920 in chips)
Seat 8: Beezy6661 (1370 in chips)
Seat 9: rockspin (1430 in chips)
Seat 10: Astin (1130 in chips)
rockspin: posts small blind 10
Astin: posts big blind 20
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to Astin [Kc Jd]
ditch15: calls 20
daveddd14: calls 20
kksnake56: calls 20
slinger3: calls 20
ratatosk: folds
devboy88: calls 20
Beezy6661: folds
rockspin: calls 10
Astin: checks
*** FLOP *** [4s Js 7h]
rockspin: checks
Astin: bets 80
ditch15: raises 80 to 160
daveddd14: folds
kksnake56: folds
slinger3: calls 160
devboy88: calls 160
rockspin: calls 160
Astin: calls 80
*** TURN *** [4s Js 7h] [Ks]
rockspin: checks
Astin: bets 470
ditch15: calls 470
slinger3: calls 470
devboy88: calls 470
rockspin: raises 780 to 1250 and is all-in
Astin: calls 480 and is all-in
ditch15: calls 780 and is all-in
slinger3: calls 780
devboy88: calls 780
*** RIVER *** [4s Js 7h Ks] [Jh]
slinger3: bets 40 and is all-in
devboy88: calls 40
*** SHOW DOWN ***
slinger3: shows [Jc Kd] (a full house, Jacks full of Kings)
devboy88: shows [5s 8s] (a flush, King high)
slinger3 collected 80 from side pot-2
rockspin: shows [Qs 6s] (a flush, King high)
ditch15: shows [9s 7s] (a flush, King high)
slinger3 collected 1200 from side pot-1
Astin: shows [Kc Jd] (a full house, Jacks full of Kings)
Astin collected 2845 from main pot
slinger3 collected 2845 from main pot
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 6970 Main pot 5690. Side pot-1 1200. Side pot-2 80. | Rake 0
Board [4s Js 7h Ks Jh]
Seat 2: ditch15 showed [9s 7s] and lost with a flush, King high
Seat 3: daveddd14 folded on the Flop
Seat 4: kksnake56 folded on the Flop
Seat 5: slinger3 showed [Jc Kd] and won (4125) with a full house, Jacks full of
Seat 6: ratatosk folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 7: devboy88 showed [5s 8s] and lost with a flush, King high
Seat 8: Beezy6661 (button) folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 9: rockspin (small blind) showed [Qs 6s] and lost with a flush, King high
Seat 10: Astin (big blind) showed [Kc Jd] and won (2845) with a full house,
Jacks full of Kings


So the rundown:

I'm in the BB, and get dealt KcJd. 2 people fold, everyone else limps. I check.

Flop comes 4s Js 7h. UTG checks, I bet 80, or just over half the pot. Next guy raises to 160... fold, fold.. call, call, call. I call. Pot is now 940. 5 people in the hand.

Turn comes Ks, I now have 2 pair vs a flush draw. UTG checks, I bet 1/2 the pot - 470. I fully expect calls, maybe some raise... but at least a couple folds. Nope. call, call, call, raise to 1250 all-in. I put in my remaining 480, call, call, call. Pot is now 6890, 5 people STILL in the pot, 3 of them all-in.

River comes Jh, I have the full boat! So I know I've got the flush beat. Whew. One guy puts in his last 40, so 4 people all-in. Last guy calls. Pot is 6970.

Show down - Jc Kd (full house - NOT mine), 58s - flush, Q6s - flush, 97s - flush. Guy who had more chips than me and a full boat gets the 1280 side pot. Next comes MY KJo full boat, and we split the main pot with 2845 each. 2 of the all-ins go home, the other 2 win.

What are the odds? 9 of the 13 spades were on the table, 3 kings, and all 4 jacks. 3 flushes, 2 identical full houses. I don't think I've seen a hand like that before.

Here's the pre-flop breakdown:

cards     win   %win    lose  %lose     tie   %tie     EV
Jc Kd 10259 1.21 593482 69.77 246927 29.03 0.156
8s 5s 164151 19.30 683246 80.32 3271 0.38 0.194
Qs 6s 214570 25.22 632827 74.39 3271 0.38 0.253
9s 7s 204502 24.04 642895 75.58 3271 0.38 0.241
Kc Jd 10259 1.21 593482 69.77 246927 29.03 0.156
cards  win   %win  lose  %lose  tie   %tie     EV
Jc Kd 0 0.00 496 66.94 245 33.06 0.165
8s 5s 111 14.98 630 85.02 0 0.00 0.150
Qs 6s 262 35.36 479 64.64 0 0.00 0.354
9s 7s 123 16.60 618 83.40 0 0.00 0.166
Kc Jd 0 0.00 496 66.94 245 33.06 0.165
After the turn:
cards  win   %win  lose   %lose  tie  %tie     EV
Jc Kd 0 0.00 36 94.74 2 5.26 0.026
8s 5s 0 0.00 38 100.00 0 0.00 0.000
Qs 6s 36 94.74 2 5.26 0 0.00 0.947
9s 7s 0 0.00 38 100.00 0 0.00 0.000
Kc Jd 0 0.00 36 94.74 2 5.26 0.026
And finally, once it's all over but the crying (obviously):
cards  win  %win  lose   %lose  tie    %tie     EV
Jc Kd 0 0.00 0 0.00 1 100.00 0.500
8s 5s 0 0.00 1 100.00 0 0.00 0.000
Qs 6s 0 0.00 1 100.00 0 0.00 0.000
9s 7s 0 0.00 1 100.00 0 0.00 0.000
Kc Jd 0 0.00 0 0.00 1 100.00 0.500
Hey, I'm impressed.

Weekend Recap + 1

Pictures from MATH might make their way up later in the day. But there's nothing spectacular.

Went to Casino Rama on Saturday with a couple buddies. I generally hit casinos for craps and slots, although I was hoping to maybe get in on some 2-5 limit if I had a chance. Headed out after 4, got in a bit after 6, and hit the craps table around 6:30. Nearly 3 hours later, had some dinner, down $160 on the $5 table (teaching someone how to play, and he lacks the bankroll to play higher... heck, I lack the will to have the bankroll to play much higher :) ). $20 buffet... not bad. Back to the floor, where I quickly went down $85 on slots (I play the $1 machines, or the occasional $0.25 if it looks fun). The slots don't usually abandon me so badly, but it wasn't to be that night. The $5 table was packed, so we turned around and played the $10 for our last available hour before our get-out-of-dodge time. We left as planned, and I'd managed to win back everything I'd lost that night + dinner. Always nice to pay for your trip :).

So I got home around 1:30am. What did I decide to do? Why, there's a $300+20 WSOP satellite on Stars at 2am! Here's my 1:58am internal dialogue (or maybe it was external... it was late)

"This is probably your last chance at the WSOP this year. You have a home game tomorrow afternoon, and at this time of night you won't be up in time to hit any super-satellites."

"But, it's $320! I've never put in more than $50 or so, and that was in a re-buy event."

"But look how small the field is with 2 min to go! It's less than 100 people. You outlasted over 7,000 a week ago. Plus you're on a roll... the Hoy, 3rd at the WWdN... sure you went out 18th in the Mookie, but that's still pretty good! You're up $190 this week!"

"Three... hundred...twenty... dollars."

"You were willing to lose $300 at Rama tonight, and you didn't! Therefore you have $300 to lose! And if you lose, just win it back tomorrow!"

"Hmm... I'm intrigued by your ideas and would like to subscribe to your newsletter."


"How can I argue with that? OKAY!"

So I bought-in. I wasn't THAT tired, and if I ended up pulling down a seat, then it was all worth it. Final tally was 110 people, 2 seats, 1 repay of the buy-in. I made the first break in good shape. Was above average, had been playing aggressively, and was feeling good. My table was stable, the players were decent, but not intimidating, and I was sitting 2nd or 3rd in chips at my table. I lasted another 40 min... and went out 47th. Not a terrible showing, but hardly worth the time and money. I'm still torn on how I went out. I should never have been IN the hand, and that poor decision made the rest of them. Be prepared for the worst hand description ever (it was 3:45am)

T8h, mid-late position (I don't remember exactly)... M = 5ish I think. One limper before me. I raise 3x BB, and the BB calls, limper folds. Flop comes 2 hearts, and a runner-runner straight flush draw (yah, I know...). My M was now in the 1ish department, as the blinds were going up in a couple minutes. I can't remember if I raised, or checked into his raise... but I ended up all-in. BB flips of KJh, and I get that sinking feeling. Out I go. The moral of this story? Don't play when you're having a hard time staying concious... your decisions will be terrible.

In the same tournament though... well, that'll be my next post, when I post the actual hand. But it was a doozy. Easily the strangest, and most unlikely turnout I've ever seen.

On Sunday I had a home game with a group of players I've only recently started playing with. Friend-of-a-friend stuff, although I'd met most of them before the poker started, so it's not like I'm a complete outsider. Decent players. It'd been a couple months since I've played live, so it was a welcome change. I played my usual game, and in the first game I ended up with enough of a chip lead to scare some of 'em. 2nd wasn't too far behind me though (oddly enough, a friend I brought in who plays pretty loose-aggressive). I ended up going out well before the money after a couple stupid decisions, tough beats, and a bad call. But I was having fun, so I figured things like playing the Doyle Brunson would be interesting... I wisely left post-flop.

2nd game I did worse. But this was mostly due to the guy on my right getting fed stacks from a couple others. He had a huge early lead and used it well. Ah well.

3rd game, one less player, and I came out swinging again. Things stayed even across the table for a while, and then I started knocking people out. I knuckled down and got a read on my opponents. I made two great calls against all-in bets, and I even got to play the hammer, although not to completion. My piece de resistance though was playing a hand blind. I raised, he re-raised all-in... and I said "should I look at my cards? Seriously... I don't know what they are." and called. I flipped over K2d. King hit the board, I won, he was out. Had a battle heads-up, even with my chip lead. I was pushing with decent hands, and getting beaten by better ones. I found myself facing the chip leader after a couple hands she deliberated hard on (and got advice from the guy I knocked out blind). Again, buckled down, and chipped up... and finally won. All-in-all, I ended up 2 buy-ins on the day.

Then last night, MATH. Only 19 players, probably due to Hoyazo being away. Finished 5th after a big comeback earlier. 5th ain't bad, even if it doesn't pay... but I should have been in longer. My brain decided to take a vacation for 4 hands, and that killed me. 4 hands in a row I had Kx-suited. I raised the first one, got re-raised by an all-in bet, and folded. I SHOULD have stayed down, I was 2nd in chips, by a good margin, and I kept betting when I got a Kx-suited again. My brain went with the "it's a sign! play it!" mentality. Especially when there were two hearts on the flop. Called another all-in. 2 more hands with Kx-suited after that, one I won the blinds, the other I called an all-in. All of a sudden, I was 5th of 6. Hee + Haw = Astin. QED.

So.. in the last week. $11x3 + $22 for blogger buy-ins, about $60 in for blogger cash games, $320 for WSOP satellite, $32 in other WSOP qualifier satellites, $395 for the casino, and $60 in for the home game = $922 spent.

~$210 in blogger tourney wins, $15 or thereabouts in cash game wins, $435 at the casino, $100 at the home game = $750 in wins = $162 in losses. Bleh. Mind you, take out the ill-advised $300+20 tournament, and I'm +$158 for the week... yay! So I'm glad the WSOP qualifying is done with, so I can stop sending money down that particular tube.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

All good things...

I started half an hour late after getting back from dinner with the family. An eventful evening full of allergic reactions to walnut bread and other fun. Luckily, I only missed one set of blinds, and was starting at 1350. I worked up as high as 8th, but ended up dropping.

Finally got knocked out by louddwnunder, when my KQo ran into her AQh with a flop of QxA. I checked, she bet small (600 on a 2100 pot), TripJax folded, and I re-raised all in (M = ~5), and she naturally called. Out I go.

Right now, she's in 5th out of 15, and I'm rooting for her. Gotta support the Canadians, even the ex-pats.

Random blathering to follow.

Distractions are deadly. You can have all the poker knowledge possible, and be practically psychic in your reads, and if you're not paying attention, it'll come back and bite you in the ass. Ok, maybe if you're THAT good you can be distracted and survive. The rest of us shmoes, however, aren't so lucky.

As stated many times earlier, I pretty much stopped playing poker online for May and June. There was no conscious decision, but life took over and I had stuff to do. On top of that, when I DID play, I really wasn't that interested. I'd jump in a cash game and then realize I didn't give a crap, and either donk off my chips or leave. I'd jump in an SnG or a 2+R WSOP satellite and about 5 min in I'd be wondering what was on TV, or how much airfare to Banff in December was, or some other distraction... and quickly lose. I'm sure the other players that are in these ultra-low buy-in tourneys didn't help either... something about someone calling a pre-flop raise with 95s and then getting a full house against your kings can suck the joy out of you.

Anyway, then I realized the WSOP was actually starting, and chances were running out. I just really wanted to see if I could luck my way into a week in Vegas. So I started playing seriously... well, not right away. I played some satellites to the 150 guarantee and still got distracted... I mean, The Daily Show and Colbert Report were on! Then I played one when nothing else of interest was going on, and with just my initial buy-in, insta-re-buy, and add-on, I got the seat to the 150. THIS is what refocused me. I actually had a reason other than $20 to play. I was hoping for a field in the 3000 range... maybe as high as 5000. Nope, over 7000. I figured I could MAYBE pull a top 10% finish with a field that big. I knew at least 1/2 - 2/3 would be looooooose and go out fast, so I just had to hold on through the start. But to make sure, I left the TV off, all other programs off, and shut the cat out of the room when he started meowing at me. No food... and just a glass of water in front of me. I focused solely on the game.

And I remembered why I used to be not half-bad at this online poker thing. I've been going "online" since I was 13, when I got my first modem and hooked up to my first online service, sat in my first chat, played my first MUD. Then I found BBSes, and found they were free (one day I might speak of the $1,000 phone bill from that first online service... mom wasn't happy). I played BBS games, chatted, message boarded, etc.. Then came this Internet fad, and the chats were bigger, the mail faster, the games multiplayer.

I have a pretty good ability to read people in everyday circumstances. I've pegged people's history and personality to a tee within hours of meeting them. I instinctively know if I'll get along with someone, or if they're full of shit. I occasionally speak about someone while mimicking their mannerisms and speech and freak people out with the accuracy. I've ALWAYS been able to adapt to my social situations if given enough time to pick up the "vibe". This translated well online. When I started playing poker online, I found I was pretty good at reading people... as long as I'd been paying attention.

When I wasn't paying attention, I had no idea what people were doing. I'd think a huge raise was a sign of weakness when they'd flopped a set, I'd think a check was prelude to a raise when they had garbage. Since I wasn't paying attention anyway, I also wasn't betting for information, happy to get a free card or get away from a hand. I became loose-passive. Once I was focused solely on the game, I tuned in again. I had a far better idea of when someone was bluffing one way or the other, and I made a point of making sure. Sure, I'm not 100%, and for all I know, I could be dead wrong on any hand I win without seeing my opponents cards, but it's a far sight better than not paying attention at all... or half-assing it.

In the end, focus + some luck = 358th place out of 7,377. No package, but a damn respectable showing for me. I've decided to minimize distractions when I want to win. Although to be fair, the last two blogger tourneys, I've had the Jays game on in the background, and then The Daily Show and Colbert Report (some things never change)... plus, the talk in those games is distracting enough as it is.


As for the 150, looking back with the glory of hindsight, I'm sure I could have cashed, except for one thing. I got scared. I only had ONE laydown I was unsure of, and it was a big one. I had top two pair, but my opponent was calling all my bets... because they weren't aggressive enough. If I'd gone all-in on the flop, I probably could have scared him off, even though he had me covered almost 3:1. I figured I had him beat at the flop, and bet half the pot. He called. Turn was nothing, I bet 1/2 again... he called. River paired the low card from the flop, and I chickened out. I put forth a NOTHING bet... something along the lines of 1/10 of the pot. As soon as I clicked "bet", I knew I was screwed. He raises to put me all-in... and I go in the tank. I have top two pair, but now there's a set possibilty, a full house possibility, or even quads (flush as well I believe, but I was sure he didn't have it based on the bets). I've put in about 20k in chips and have 13k left. With the blinds and antes, a win would put me at 75k and in the top 10 in chips. If it was just for cash, I would have called. It was for a WSOP package though.. $12k (AND a PokerStars shirt :) ).... I folded. I hated myself for it. I got scared... and I didn't know this guy. As I kept playing and watching him, I grew pretty sure I had him beat. He was tight, but not super-tight... and he knew how and when to use his massive chip lead. Then again, if he had the set or boat (or quads), I would have kicked myself for being a donkey.

From that point on, I was fighting to stay afloat. I came back from the brink a few times, built up some chips when I needed to... but never fully recovered. In fact, I don't think my M was that high again. I started playing scared. My goal became "get your M above 10", not "get the chip lead". So I tightened up, got passive, and eventually my luck ran out. If I'd stayed aggressive, I'd have survived longer. I would have had more chips. My new super-tight image was enough to scare away people when I had great hands, but I was terrified of being outdrawn so I was happy with occasional blinds and antes. So I went out 358th, when I know I could have gone deeper. Fear leads to tight-passive, tight-passive leads to fighting against the blinds, the blinds will eventually win. Be the master of your poker fate.


"Cum on dude." What is with the scammers and mooches? Do they really think I'm going to give them "Just $2" or "$1.10" or ".90"? I have to admit, it's amusing as hell to string them along, especially the persistent ones with the terrible spelling. What really got me though, was that at least 3 hung around the WWdN last night. Once they realized nobody was going to pay them, they decided that they'd stick around and watch, and try to shoot the shit. Sweating the players, commenting on hands... it was kind of surreal.

My favourite exchange of the night though, had to be at the final table (I'm paraphrasing).

Iakaris raises HermWarfare all-in. Herm calls, and the hands are shown. Iakaris has DA HAMMER! Everyone has a good laugh, is rightly shocked when the hammer doesn't hold up, etc.. Since Iak had Herm well covered at that point, it wasn't a huge deal. One of the railbirds chirps in:

"Ha! Raising with 72o! Such a donkey raise. You're no GUS HANSEN." (spelling and punctuation corrected).

For about 3 seconds, the table goes silent.

Iak: Uhhh.. yah... welcome to the party. You're obviously new here.

Then came all comments praising the use of the mighty hammer and how shocked we were that the best hand lost, and that Gus Hansen lacked the testicular fortitude to raise with the hammer.


And with that, I'm done. Maybe at The Mookie tonight, and I'm hoping to be able to squeeze in a couple WSOP attempts before Sunday... but life is shoving itself in the way again. Stupid friends and their wanting to do stuff and go places... and me planning things :).

It's all about perspective.

Insert Title Here

Ok, I'm a liar. I mean, I claimed there wouldn't be a lot of updates in my header up there... and now it's 4 days in a row. I'll try and slow that down.

So, entered the weekly WWdN tourney on Stars last night. As I said, I've only cashed in one before, and that was a 6th place finish in June. Other than that, I've bubbled a couple times, and sniffed the final table. Last night I came in 3rd.

I got up to 1st, held it for a while, went back and forth, dropped as low as 9th, and then ended up undeservedly going out with the bronze. Again, my cards were good for most of the night. I got worried when we were down to 6 or 7, as they started cooling off. Some aggressive play kept me alive though.

Then I got into a couple all-in hands with Iakaris, who was dominating the last half of the game, but hit a rough patch at the end. I had no right winning either of them (I was dominated in both I think), but ended up rivering the wins and sending him out in 4th. My river luck didn't hold up a hand or two later when I was all-in against KentAllard with A6o vs his A9 or somesuch. I hit my 6 on the flop, but he rivered the straight to send me home 3rd. Congrats to him for winning the whole thing.

The only other hand I recall at all was against Guin when I was moved to his table. I had KJo I believe, and he had the Hilton Sisters. Flop comes JJx, he bets, I raise, he goes into the tank and asks "overpair?" .... beat... beat... "set?" I don't say, he re-raises all-in, I call, he says, "set." as do I. I get richer. I always feel bad knocking out a fellow Canuck, and I did it to two of 'em last night. I still haven't knocked out Kat though, so I might live a little while longer yet, since she COULD technically hunt me down fairly easily if she chose. :)

Anyway, 1st at the Hoy, 3rd at the WWdN (which had ~20 more players)... do I try for the trifecta tonight at The Mookie? If I get home in time - belated birthday dinner for mom. Or I could buy in early and hope to get back before the blinds get me. We'll see.

I have it on good authority...

That 3rd is, in fact, the new 1st. Ok, not as late as last night.. but still only doing pics until tomorrow. I'm on a roll baby! A fairly small roll, but a roll nonetheless :)

Not long after the 1st break.

At the 2nd break.

6 Left.

And the end

What? You want to see hands and stuff? I honestly can't remember any truly memorable hands. Some HUGE suckouts by me at the end.. but nothing else to write home about.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

About Last Night...

So, I figured I'd give this Mondays At The Hoy thing a try after bombing out in my first Mookie last week. I've played in the Tuesday WWdN tourneys since they started, but have missed my fair share of them (that pesky "life" keeps getting in the way), and only cashed once, with a 6th place 3 weeks ago.

So that's my brief "blogger tourney" history.

Like I've said, I was a bit bummed after my "near"-miss at the 150 Guaranteed on Sunday, but figured I should complete the circuit of blogger tourneys and play the Hoy. I'm glad I did.

What can I say? I'm amazed that not only did I win the thing, but that I held onto 1st place for most of the tourney. After moving up there before the 1st break, the lowest I dropped was 3rd, and that was only for a few hands. I think I had a bit of luck on my side. I saw a lot of faces, not a small amount of aces, even the mighty Hammer a couple times... and more importantly, didn't go card dead for more than an orbit or so the entire game. I caught my fair share of draws and TP's as well. Probably most importantly, I was able to walk away when I needed to, and make the right calls at the right time. I guess that's essentially poker in a nutshell, isn't it? That's right, I'm the guy to come to for my mindboggling grasp of the obvious, with a dash of tautology mixed in.

Is it wrong for me to think it was all a conspiracy to let me win so I'd keep tossing my money down the tubes later on?

Regardless, it was a great feeling, and it was an honour to play with the people I played with. These 4 weekly games (MATH, WWdN, Mookie, WWdN: Not) are truly just great big home games. They're more an excuse to shoot the shit, talk a little smack, and learn some poker than they are hardcore tournaments. It's a blast, and I'm glad they've become staples. They're especially nice when you consider the number of complete assholes that are at the online tables, who do little more than detract from an otherwise enjoyable time. It's no surprise that even the bloggers that decide to "take a break from poker" make the exception to still play at these.

Thanks to everyone I played with. I'll see you out there again.


It's almost 2am, and I'm up at 6:30. Pictures will have to do for now. Text later, when I'm bored at work. I should really compress these more...

At the break

At the 2nd break

Final Table

The end result - QED

I had a great time, great game everyone!

Sunday, July 16, 2006

It's better to have loved and lost, than to have never loved at all....

I guess that goes for poker as well. Today was the MASSIVE 150 Guaranteed seats tourney at Pokerstars. As I said below, I won my way in last week. At game time - 7,377 entries. 234 seats up for grabs.

At the end for me, 6 hours later - 358/7,377.. missing the seats by 124 spots. I got lucky... I played smart once or twice, and stupid a few times too. I chickened out at least once that would have made a big difference if I was ahead.. but I couldn't pull the trigger. In the end, with an M a bit over 4, and pocket 9s in my face UTG, I went all-in. Maybe I should have just raised, but it was a tight table at this point. I got called by the BB with AJs. A hits the flop, by the river I needed the 9, or a 7 for the straight... neither hit and IGH.

I reached as high 101st, and I outlasted some pretty prominent poker bloggers. I did far better than I had any right to. Outlasting over 7,000 other players and finishing in the top 5%. Still, to see nothing at the end when you are SO CLOSE really sucks. Ah well.

Some highlights:

My best rank - 101

I actually prefer Kilkenny... no offense intended. And no, I'm not the one that folded.

I'd go home.. but I'm already here. 358th :(

So, a few more shots this week it looks like. I'm not dead yet! But I seriously doubt I'll be seeing the inside of a Vegas casino this month. Maybe I'll go to Niagara and pretend :).

Wednesday, July 12, 2006


Ok, so I'm a bit happy. I was going to buy my way into the WSOP 150 seat Guaranteed anyway, but I figured I'd try and satellite my way in first. I think this is my 5th or 6th attempt since Monday (4th satellite, and 1 or 2 super attempts). Granted, I tried a few before the 150 seat tourney was announced, and made it to the WSOP package tourney a couple times... but hey, this is the last shot.

I've been running at a mediocre pace lately, and haven't actually played that much in the past couple months. So it's nice to know I accomplished something... even if it is fairly minor, and took no small amount of luck to make it.

I played well at the start, and in the middle... but towards the end of the middle, I tailed off. One boneheaded move hurt me, and then I went card dead as the blinds rocketed. The end game was essentially the standard "wait until my time bank starts ticking" wait for others to get knocked out. Eventually I found myself in dead last, with 2579 in chips (and blinds at 10000/20000 + 1000 ante), and the BB bearing down on me... and it hit me. Hard. I was all-in, with a whopping 38o in front of me... against A4o. Flop - KQ6 rainbow. Turn - 5. River - 3!! I take the 10158 pot. Next I get put all-in by paying the SB and Ante... with K8o, facing K5o. Hey! I'm dominating :) River - 78J. Turn - J. River - 8!! Full Boat baby! I gladly take the 25316 in the pot, and the button. The next hand was the one that ended it for everyone, and I get to play on Sunday!

So yah... TONS of luck came my way exactly when I needed it. Which is good, because any skill I had went out the window about 20 minutes earlier, and I thought it took my luck with it. It's just nice to win something. And it looks like I also get Silverstar status for a month for playing the 150... they're good at latching onto you. Way to make me keep playing Poker Stars.