I had been playing pretty sharp going into this tournament, so I had high expectations from the start.
Same details as usual. If you don't recall it, it is under several other posts of similar titles.
The action was fast early. Second hand in just about everyone limped to me in the BB (I checked rags), some whack-o went broke with Top Pair-3 kicker vs. Top Two. Some Chicago White Sox fan was the beneficiary of that present.
Three hands after that we have a 3-way all-in on a flop of A-7-4. One guy's got A-T, one guy's got A-4, and one guy's got A-7. The board bricked out, and the guy with A-7 (Some college kid in a Dogtown T-shirt) won a 4,000 chip pot.
I played REALLY tight positional poker, because I knew if I flopped a hand, I'd win a big pot. But until then I wanted to keep the pots small and try to side step the land mines when I had marginal hands.
I won played like 3-4 pots during the 15-30 level, and won 2 of them. A small pot with Qd-9d and small one with 6-6 on a 3-2-2 flop.
I played a pot with K-9 that was interesting.
2 guys limped in late position, and I checked from the BB (with K-9 off).
9-6-2, two hearts
SB bets small, I flat call, Button also calls.
SB bets the pot, I put him on a strong hand, it felt like maybe a straight or small flush... so I folded. The button flat called.
SB bets small, Button min-raises, SB calls.
SB: 10c-7c for the straight
Button: Ah-5h for the nut flush
Very next hand, it folds around to me in the SB, I limp in with A-8 off, BB thinks for a while and then checks.
I check, he bets 80 (the pot), I flat call the 80.
I check, He checks
[ I'm putting him on a hand like Q-J/K-J. ]
River: (Pot: 300)
I bet 300 because I thought he'd pay off a larger bet with his Jack, he called and mucked showing a Jack.
So that got me up to over 2,000. Where I floated around for a little while. I'd steal a pot here, make a small bluff there, and I broke about even during the whole 25-50 level... mostly folding, though. Just waiting for a big hand where I knew these guys would double me up. (Especially one of the big stacks).
It finally came, but was against a guy who had a stack about my size.
We're playing 5-handed on the final table bubble with 50-100 blinds (I've got about 1900)
I had A-K off OTB (on the button). 2 guys limped in early position for 100. I made it 450 total. Everyone folds except 1 guy.
A-Q-4, two clubs
He shoves all-in, I call.
He has As-8s.
He's drawing dead and I've got about 3500 in chips going into the final table. (35 BBs is not bad for an event like this).
At the final table, I won a decent pot with 8-8 on a 6-5-2 flop when noone called my 400 bet.
Very next hand I get 9-9 in early position, and limp for 100. A couple others follow suit, and Dogtown makes it 1,100 total. I fold, because with my stack I don't need to (best case scenario) flip a coin for my tournament life.
7-Handed at the final table there was a BIG pot.
2 Short Stacks got all-in and we're called by BOTH big stacks (Dogtown and White Sox) and were both knocked out by Dogtown's Kd-Qd (pretty loose call on his part, but that was his middle name). So now we're on the money bubble.
With the blinds at 80-160, I raised to 480 UTG (under the gun) with A-Q off. White Sox insta-called on my left. And we saw a flop 2-ways...
Flop: (Pot: 1200)
A-9-6, two diamonds
This not a time when I wanna keep the pot small, there are a lot of draws on that flop and I want him to pay for them. I bet the pot, 1200, and he calls.
I move in for my last 1k and change, he calls with A-5 off (WOW!) and misses his 3-outer.
I'm up to 5.5k.
Next hand I call a guy on the turn with nothing because I felt weakness, I bluffed the river after he checked and I was over 6k in chips with 100-200 blinds (Pretty DAMN deep stacked for a crapshoot like this)...
A little later I pick up J-J, 1 guy limps in early position, I make it 900 total. Dogtown calls, all others fold.
Flop: (Pot: 2,200)
He checks, I bet 1400, he folds. Now I'm the chip leader with a little over 7k.
I go a little card dead, and dwindle down to about 6.5k, but I'm picking my spots well and playing pretty cautiously, just wating for another good spot to bust somebody. I don't need to get creative against these kinds of players becasue they won't understand any cute moves I try and pull. You can just wait for solid hands and they'll give you action with weaker ones. So that is my game plan vs. these guys.
Over the next few hands, I start catching cards (Top Pair with a flush draw, K-K, etc), but noone else is. Thats actually not bad, though, because I'm perfectly fine picking up all the dead money every hand since the blinds are so high. I built my stack up over 8k during this time period with the blinds at 200-400. But dwindled down to the 6k range after a few pots here and there (with the blinds as high as they are, my standard raise is 1200 so its not hard to lose a couple thousand).
With the blinds at 250-500, we were STILL 5-handed on the money bubble. Until White Sox got a guy all in with A-2 off, the short stack showed A-Q, and of course the flop came 4-2-2. So we were finally in the money.
The blinds were eating away at my stack so bad, and I couldn't steal a single pot as White Sox and Dogtown were making huge raises EVERY hand. So if I could just pick up a hand, I'd be GREAT! But it was 8-3, 6-2, J-3, 8-4 over and over. White Sox had like 15k as he showed a pocket pairs/big cards like every pot.
The short stack got all-in with 5-5 vs. Dogtown's K-J. He flopped a 5, but Dogtown went runner-runner to make a straight and we were 3 handed, with me having almost NO CHIPS.
I shoved with Kc-9c, OF COURSE, White Sox has 8-8 and calls. Lucky for me I rivered a King! :) But I was still REALLY low on chips! :(
Next hand, I shove the button with Q-Q, White Sox beats me into the pot with A-4 off. He misses and I'm up to 8k.
Two hands later, White Sox shoves the button. I wake up with A-Q in the BB and call. He has Ad-6d.
A-J-7, two diamonds.
NO DIAMOND! AND I'LL HAVE THE CHIP LEAD WITH HIM BASICALLY GONE!
FUCK! One Time let me fade it... bullshit.
I'm out in 3rd, after playing so good and building my way back into SERIOUS contention.
White Sox went all-in EVERY hand heads-up because he thought thats how you're supposed to play ("What? That's what happens on TV...") and Dogtown picked him off a couple times to win it.
As usual, I gave no bad beats and got my money in good all but once (in which case I was even money and the blinds forced the hand to occur), but ended up going broke when I got it in as a 3.5 to 1 favorite... boo hoo me! ;)
I've played in this tournament 4 times now and I've faired pretty well:
March - 1st Place (+$720) - My Hands Held Up
April - 2nd Place (+$540) - Bad Beat
May - Didn't Cash (-$100) - Coolers Galoure
June - 3rd Place (+$360) - Bad Beat
So overall I've done VERY well in this game, and I hope to continue doing so...
I should have a New Blog up this weekend, after I play with my friends on Saturday Night.