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Good, Bad, & Lucky..part 1

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  • Good, Bad, & Lucky..part 1

    Well, after going to Vegas a few weeks ago and not playing very well in the PSO event at The Orleans, my wife and I decide to go back to Vegas and give it another wack. I worked hard, I believe, over the last few weeks on my game seeing as I was very diappointed in my play at the previous tourney.

    We close up shop at 3pm on Saturday and hop in the car at 5pm and head to Vegas. We get there at 8:30pm, check in, grab a couple of adult beverages, and I walk around Freemont street as my wife tries her luck at video keno.....I hate machines! We are staying downtown due to cost and the fact that a last minute reservation search found most hotels booked. I remember that the Plaza has a Midnight Madness NL tourney so I walk over to check it out since it's about 11pm. I get there and sign-up, the cardroom manager says $50, $60, or $100....apparently $50 gets you 1500 chips, $60 = $2000, and $100 = $2000 plus a $10 discount for prepaying your one and only rebuy......I say make it $100 I'll need all the chips I can get. I decide to play in a NL ring game to warm up, I have never played a NL ring game live before and promptly lost my $80 buy in losing with my highly over-valued top pairs, oh well.

    Tourney time. I sit down and am feeling a little bit of the jitters thinking back to my last live tourney. I start off winning a few small pots nothing to exciting and I'm feeling pretty comfortable. I find myself with 55 MP FTA and I decide to limp. Everyone folds to the SB who raises to 4x the BB, the BB calls, and I call. Flop comes Q,8,5 rainbow and the SB announces all-in, BB folds, & I quickly call. He looks disgusted and flips over 98 suited. The turn and river are blanks and I scoop his chips. Feeling very comfortable now, playing a few hands here and there nothing crazy but my chips grow a little. 3rd round comes and I look down in MP and find AQos and raise to 4x the BB. Everyone folds to the SB who sits and thinks for a very long time. If he calls my raise he only has about 300 chips left and he finally announces all-in. The BB calls and is all-in with a shorter stack than the SB. I call of course. SB has K4os(??) and the BB has J6 of clubs. Flop comes and it's 9TJ rainbow and the BB takes the lead but everyone has outs. The turn comes a Q(ouch) and now the SB takes the lead with a straight leaving me with a 3 outer. Luck was on my side and I hit a K on the river for the nut straight and I knock out 2 for 1. Everyone at our table is talking about the hand when the next hand is dealt. I'm still a little light headed and thinking of the call by the K4 guy. I get dealt 99 and the guy 2 to my right raises 5x the BB and with a combination of thinking the 'Poker Gods' were setting me up for a fall and the cloud of the last hand in my head I decide to fold. Flop came 9JJ. The raiser goes all-in and the caller folded. I tell the winner of the pot that I folded the winning hand and he says you couldn't beat this and flips over A4os. I shake off that horrible play of mine and my confidence is still up right now, all the while I'm still scratching my head with the K4 all-in, oh well good for me. Things are pretty uneventful until we reach the final table. There were only 33 players and it paid 5 seats.

    Final table comes and I'm above average in chips close to the lead. I'm in seat 8 and a guy across the table in seat 4 is pushing his stack around with a couple of raises and all-ins. No one calls him. He reminds me of Hoyt Corkins, hat and all with a scowl that would scare a scarecrow. Anyway, Corkins makes a raise preflop 5xBB in EP, there is a MP caller that is all in, I look down and see AQos again. I really felt that he was being a bully and I had him in chips but barley, maybe 3 or 4000 more in chips. I think for a few seconds and decide to force the issue and I was fairly confident that he would fold, I go all-in. Everyone folded to him and he looks at me like I just slapped his wife or something and boldly announces in his deepest of voices 'I CALL'......my heart sinks cause I'm thinking a monster like A's or K's. He flips over T's, the MP position player looks disgusted and turns over his 9's and I show my AQ. Well the flop comes and is no help to anyone(forgive me for not remembering the exact cards), the turn comes and again helps no one, the river hits and I spike the Ace. Let's just say that Corkins was quite disgusted and after realizing I had him in chips he swiftly walks away. The poker Gods were watching out for me and blessed me with another 2 for 1. We now have 8 players left and I'm the chip leader. A few players go all-in get called and go out and we make the money. I've lost a few chips but I'm still not threatened by anyone. We get to 3 handed and I'm really card dead and the blinds have reached 2000 and 4000. I'm chip leader but only by about 5000 and I have a little over 10x the BB. It becomes an all-in festival with a tremendous amount of blind stealing. I seriously lose half my stack, losing my BB's to all-ins and I never had a hand better than 94. I win a few and finally the other player with a stack takes out the the small stack. He has me in chips by about 3-1. His strategy was just all-in preflop or limp and all-in on the flop and it worked like a charm for him. I look down and see QJ suited in the small blind and decide to take advantage of his aggressiveness and limp. He announces all-in as I suspected he would and I quickly call. He has K5 and the flop helps no one, then I spike a Q on the turn and the river is a blank. Double up, cool. we go back and forth for about an hour and I'm losing more than winning but hanging in. I look down and find 99 in the SB. I limp again figuring to use his aggression against him and he quickly announces all-in and I quickly call. He shows A3 and he gets no help and I double up again. At this point it's about 4:30am and I'm exhausted he looks at me and says Roger(we introduced ourselves when we got heads up) we are about even in chips, would you consider a chop. I said EVEN, and he says yes EVEN. 1st place is $1070, 2nd place is $645, and we take $857.50 a piece. I tip the dealers, grab something to eat, and skip over to the hotel room to tell my wife.

  • #2
    Great report.

    I start off winning a few small pots nothing to exciting and I'm feeling pretty comfortable
    This is an excellent way to start a tournament. Playing small-ball to pickup chips is a great way to go. (a) you pickup chips & (b) you have a low risk factor, (c) when the betting picks up, you have a cushion b/c you accummulated chips in small pots.

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