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Orleans Open Championship

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  • Orleans Open Championship

    This isn't really a traditional "trip report", since I live in Vegas, but since I was typing this report up on the $1060 buy in NLHE event for another group, I thought I'd cross post it here anyway. I hope you who read it enjoy.

    366 players fought it out for a first place prize of $131,000. I went out 90th. Here's what happened:

    They started us with T3000, which I had modestly increased to T3500 at the first break. Between the 1st and 2nd breaks, I get a whole lot of nothing... cards or situation wise.
    One damaging hand I play during this time, the blinds were at 40-80, and I open in middle position for T250 with ATo (this was a standard raise at this level at my table, and quite often successful in stealing the blinds). The button calls, which I don't like, as he's played solid all day. The big blind also calls, he's hit several hands and has a nice stack built up (chip leader at our table with ease), and has been playing fairly loose. The flop comes T97 rainbow. The BB checks to me, and I bet T500 into the 790 pot. The button calls, which I hate, as I suspect he has me beat at this point. The guy hadn't been out of line yet, and had only shown down big hands. He also liked to trap. The BB also calls behind him. The turn was an 8, putting the 4 straight on board. The BB now bets out 1500. I suspect he might be trying to buy it, and not have the straight, but I had some problems. 1) calling essentially committed most of my stack, and 2) there was still a player to act behind me who I knew had a real hand. If it was heads up, I would have seriously considered calling this guy. But with the player still to act, I decided it swung the decision to a fold, and wait for a better spot to get my chips in. The button deliberates for a long time and finally folds also.

    So we hit the 2nd break, and I'm down to T2300. I find Tim (tko14) and he tells me he's got around 7K. Between breaks 2 and 3 I'm able to rebuild my stack without ever having to show a hand. The first key comes with blinds at 150-300, and I'm down to T1850. I haven't played a hand in what seems like forever. The player on my right, who had also been playing tight but occassionally stealing the blinds, opens making it 900 to go from the cut off. I look down at 77, and my instinct says to gamble with him, so I go all in. I expected him to call the additional 950, but instead he mucks and I take it down without a flop. To his right is one of the "rat pack" players who was profiled on the WPT and WSOP shows. He's pretty surprised and says to the guy "what, no call?" The guy says he suddenly didn't like his hand any more. My lack of cards and opportunities must have made me look like the rock of gibralter. LOL Either that or he was on a pure steal with total junk. Probably a little of both. Later the rat pack kid is down to about 1600 and doubles up when he moves in from the BB over a raise with AQ and the raiser calls with 55. He says "coin flip", and wins when an ace hits. Not a long while later, I'm at about T4000, the blinds are at 150-300 with a 25 ante. The rat pack kid opens in late position making it 900 to go. I'm on the button and look down at AJo, and I get another one of those instictual feelings. My gut says, "move in, he won't call". This kind of feeling isn't just a whim, I've been observing him for a while, and I've played with him before. That no doubt has some influence on my instints screaming MOVE IN. So I go all in. After the blinds are out, he goes into his "huddle". He says to me "tens?... jacks?" I don't respond. He says "tens are in the lead, but it's a coin flip..." I still don't react, but inside I'm thinking Uh Oh. After counting down the stacks (I have him covered slightly), and much deliberation, he lays it down. He really took a long time to decide. While I'm stacking it, he says again "tens?" I say "close". He says "jacks huh." I don't respond. He says he had AKs. I don't really believe him, but he did take forever, clearly agonizing whether or not to go with the hand. When he tells me he had AKs, I lie, "well then, we'd have had another coin flip". He says a coin flip was fine when he had 1600, but it's not so good when he's got 3800. I start to think he really did lay down AK. I go over to tell tko14 about my turn around, and he's out. I don't know what happened, wasn't able to catch up with him. I'm able to steal the blinds a few more times, and am at T6500 at the 3rd break.

    Most of the big names I had noticed earlier are gone. Scotty Nguyen, Phil Helmuth, Men Nguyen, TJ Cloutier, Kathy Leibert, I don't see any more. The one "name" player I do recognize still in is Humberto Brenes. After the 3rd break comes the fatal hand. With the blinds at 200-400 and 100 antes, I'm in the BB. A player opens, making it 1200 to go. The next player calls. Everyone else mucks to me, and I look down at AK. I have a good read on both these players, and feel confident I know their holdings. The first raiser I suspected had 2 big cards, and the caller had called like this before with a small pair, so I suspected him to have a big ace or small pair. I had T6000 (after my blind), and both were close to that. I felt like if I moved in, neither of them would call me. This was actually a fairly common occurance at our table for the past hour and a half... someone raised, another player came over the top, and the raiser folded. Not that someone was coming over the top every single time there was a raiser, but rather that when this did happen, the re-raiser was never called, not once. I felt if my reads were correct, there was at least a 75% chance I wouldn't be called. With all that dead money out there, I went for it and moved in. The first raiser mucked pretty quick. The 2nd guy counted down the call, and the rest of his chips (he had about 1500 left if he called and lost), and after much deliberation almost shyly slid in the call. He had 66, and I didn't improve, so that was it for me. This was the first hand all day that I actually had to show down, it was a coin flip, and I called "heads" when it came "tails". If I do win this hand, I feel like I'm in great shape to go deep into this thing. My reads were spot on, my timing was spot on, I was "in the zone". I was dissappointed that the guy called me for most of his chips with 66, but that's poker.

    That's my tournament story, and I'm sticking to it.

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