This one didn’t go as well as my other recent big buy-in events. I made a few good hands, took a few bad beats, and was right around my starting stack of 30,000 when the following situation went down in Level Four. With blinds of 200-400 and a 50 ante, a tight-straightforward player opened for 1,400 UTG. I called UTG+2 with two queens, and a loose-ish, decent player called in late position. The rest folded. With 5,225 in the pot, we took the flop three-handed. It came J62 rainbow. UTG led out for 5k. I called. The LP player thought for a while, asked both of us how many chips we had (UTG had similar to me), and eventually raised to 20,000. UTG muttered and folded, and I had a decision. I had about 23k behind after calling the 5k, so i would be getting about 1.9-1 to put all my chips in. My read was that my opponent could have AJ as easily as a set, and so I would win the showdown often enough to show a decent profit getting my chips in. I don’t know if that read was right, but that’s what it was. It turned out my opponent had a set of deuces and I didn’t hit any miracles. Good game, me.
Another aspect of the hand is that there were two legitimate preflop choices. Even before the tournament I was going back and forth about what hands to reraise with and what hands to call with in spots like the above one. This is to say, I knew going in that by flat-calling preflop I risked going broke to a small set. I thought the benefits outweighed the risks as part of my global strategy, but I’m certainly willing to listen to counter-arguments.
I’m not sure yet what my next big brick-and-mortar tournament will be. My next focus will be on the FTOPS currently taking place. Good luck to all playing events in that series.
Well, I finished in 7th place. Not what I was hoping for, obviously, but I’m trying my best to apply the Bill Chen Rule. (For those who don’t know, that rule is: If You Would’ve Taken the Result Before the Tournament, Then You Should Be Happy.) I ran good for a while today, but then ran less good. Eventually I fell victim to a crazy play when we were eight-handed, and then ran my top pair into Gavin’s better top pair to finally go broke. By the way, Gavin should never be allowed to get top pair. In all seriousness, Gavin is a friend of mine and I really hope he wins this thing now that I’m out of it and he got my last million in chips.
I’m now considering heading out to Vegas for Festa al Lago, since I seem to be on a roll with going deep in these things, but at this particular second the prospect of further travel seems…less than ideal.
I’d be happy to discuss any of the hands you might’ve read about from today’s play. For what it’s worth, I thought I played pretty well again and probably came one pot away from getting to the final six with good chips.
Time to head home. Ain’t that always the way?
I had a third consecutive good day in this thing, although it didn’t start out that way. No, I’m not talking about the 100k in chips I lost in the first level. I’m going back even further, to when my last good contact lens ripped at 11 a.m., about an hour before the cards went in the air. (I’d already gone through the one backup lens I’d brought with me. Idiot that I am, I only brought the one.) I had to scramble around to find an eye doctor, but somehow I did. Miraculously, I had my prescription with me, and even more miraculously, the nice lady at the eye doctor’s office simply handed me a single “trial” lens for free and I was in and out of the office in three minutes. By 11:47 a.m. I’d ordered breakfast at the coffee shop back at the casino. Pretty sick.
As for the poker, I enter Day Four with 943,000, which I believe is in third place out of the 27 remaining players. (Gavin Smith and Vivek Rajkumar, excellent players and also both great guys, are first and second.) I had my share of good luck and bad luck in Day Three, but again I was pretty happy with how I played. I’ve put myself in position to make some noise, which is all you can really ask for. The blinds will get big tomorrow. Let’s hope that works out to our benefit.
I had a good day–got my starting stack of 30k up to 106.9k by the end. I wish I had a bunch of interesting hands to report, but mostly I just ran really good. OK, I’ll give you some stuff.
Level one, blinds 50-100. This is one of the day’s first hands so we all have about 30k. Young online pro opens UTG+1 for 300. Two callers, I decide to call from the small blind with AhQd. The big blind comes along for the ride. Flop comes QhJh4h. Checked to the last caller who bets 1000. I call, the rest fold. Turn is a blank. I check, he bets 2500, I call. River is an offsuit king. I bet 3000, he calls with 5h3h. There really isn’t a BIG MISTAKE moment for me in the hand, just a bunch of style choices. As it turns out, having seen this opponent the rest of the day, I’m pretty sure I lost the minimum. I say this partially because…
Level three, blinds 100-200, 25 ante. The opponent from the last hand opens after three folds for 600. I make it 1850 two seats to his left with AhQd (yes, same hand as last). The rest fold, he calls. Flop comes 7h6d2d. Check, check. Turn is Ad. Check, check. River is 4d. He bets 3100, I call. He shows Jd7d!
Other stuff that happened: I made a successful squeeze, and a few successful resteals, and flopped a few huge hands and made money off them. Fun.
Day Two is Monday. Expect an update then.