Circuit Update

First off want to give a shout out to Alex Wood. Frequently see him at the last two or three tables of the Harrahs weekly tournament. Just saw he finished second in event 10 for over 11k. Great job man! Send us a pic to get you on the site and destroy your anonymity.

I ran well in the 9pm second chance tournament last night. Got there an hour early with the intent to play a satellite and free roll the small buy-in. Got seated in a turbo, which I hate, but we had to do it to finish in time.

With three handed and the 9pm already kicked (they pay two winners), I twice watched my opponents suck out on each other with baby cards runner-runner straights to stay alive. Since they were doubling the blinds every hand, we finally agreed to chop three ways.

Turns out, I got overpaid in a satellite last week because they gave us a $500 chip and $100 cash. Last night we each got $350 after paying the dealer a $50 tip. So one prize pool was 1200 and the other was 1100. I'm guessing I didn't get screwed last night and got an edge the first night. Hope it wasn't the reverse.

I got big hands in the tournament like I asked for... Course many of them didn't hold up. Late I got crippled when my Aces called pockets 9s all in preflop. He turned a 9 and I was short with two tables left. There was one shorter stack. I shoved on his Big Blind with QQ and he woke up to Aces. Now, i was micro-stacked. After folding for two revolutions. I was all the way down to just a couple k over my starting chips with 11 people left. Yeah that short. Kudos for Gene D in reinforcing in my head over time that with big blinds and antes you don't have to shove immediately, you can still pick a spot.

I decided that when the big blind got to a particular player, the only guy short enough, that a shove on him might hurt, I would push with any two cards. Sure enough, first guy folds and I thow it all in with 85 o/s. Amazingly, he folded (my tight image probably factoring in). He said, "I'm not doubling YOU up."

Then, I got AA again and shoved on the big blind and the huge stack. Another guy called (dude who cracked my other AA with 9s) and he had 7s. No second set for the guy and I was rolling. After that nobody played a pot with me when I shoved even if they led out for a raise (timing is one of the most underrated aspects of luck in tournament poker... last night it was in my favor).

Let's see I also had to lay down KK earlier in the tournament. Flop came Ace high. Two bets. I fold. Both had an ace. Later it came A high, and I had KK again, and it went bet (me) call, check, check, bet (him) call. He had Ace rag.

Another big hand I had was AK, I fired out a preflop bet. Old guy claimed he couldn't read the board, so the dealer would read out the flop to him. He called. Flop came KdJdx. He checked, I bet, he asked the dealer what the board was and then raised me. Uhhh... I got leveled. I call.

He shoves the turn (which was a 10 I think). I deliberate knowing I'm beat but not wanting to fold. They call clock. I fold. Not before a player not in the hand said something to me that I've never seen before at a poker table. It didn't effect my decision as fold was the best play there with so many hands crushing me but it bothered me. Ask me in person and I'll tell you the story.

So clearly the structure even for the second chance tournaments is phenomenal. So much play to weather bad beats. I also got big hands that stood up too. So, no griping here. Can't say enough about how it rewards the better players and there are fewer morons deep in these things.

However, as happy as I am with the structure, saw a lot of weirdness. Take this hand, late, I'm in the BB, folded around to the kid in the SB. He gathers his chips to raise, takes them up to the line. Doesn't say anything. Picks up and fires in the amount to call my BB and then goes back and fires in the raise. I want to say it's a string bet... it obviously was. I kind of point to the action but don't say anything. I have A10 and am playing regardless. I don't want to be that angle shooter that makes a stink and then makes a play with a possible big hand (though A10 is not a big hand). Didn't have to. Guy next to me says it's a string bet. Dealer says he wasn't looking. Kid says he did it all in one motion. Which he clearly didn't.

Then he said his hands never left the chips, so now, I do speak up because he's not being honest. BTW, I'm picking up on his weakness and feel good about A10. I also watched him take a while to bundle up the courage to try and raise the pot, so I thought I was leading. Floor comes and the kid backs off on his statements after me and the other guy basically deny what he claimed he did.

Then, he shows, and to his credit, honestly, exactly what he did. And amazingly, the floor, Robert (who though I disagreed with a couple of his decisions mostly this one, I thought did everything a floor guy should and ran a great tournament, great job, even if it's the wrong decision (imo) delivery is sometimes more important), said it wasn't a string bet because clearly he intended to raise. WTF? The kid reenacted a perfect string bet. He called and then went back picked up additional chips and fired them in. If that isn't a string bet, I don't know what one is. He never verbalized his intentions either.

I call (was going to write "flatted" but it annoys Southpaw Rounder so I'll not use it every single time). Flop comes A high (bingo). He bets. I should have flatted (:)but I shoved and he folds mumbling I got him outkicked. I think the way the action went down he might have bluffed at it on the following two streets. Bad play on my part.

Speaking of craziness, I watched a guy at showdown, wait for his opponent to show out of turn, make a speech and then fling his cards down on the table for the perfectly executed slowroll, ONLY problem is they hit the edge of the muck face down. He makes no effort to spin them, and the dealer with nobody asking picks them up and shows the winning hand and awards the slowroller/mucker the pot. Then he did it again, two hands later, exact same speech, bs, and misfire muck of his slowroll. WTF?

If I were the opponent and I got slowrolled by an idiot too dumb to flop his cards face up without hitting the muck I would have screamed bloodly murder. The two guys didn't say anything. One got busted that way. I wasn't involved in the hand and didn't speak, and truth be told I was happy the slowroller got the chips because he was terrible, but later I asked the dealer "Wha happened?". And she said, clearly he intended to show down he had the winning hand. Wow. Again with the "intent" what are they mind readers? Then, somebody said the second botched slowroll hit her hand... okay, I buy that, but not the first one.

Later, the same dealer 5 minutes into a new level was informed by me and another guy the blinds had gone up. It was the slowrollers big blind. She turned to them and said the new blind level and they ignored her. She kind of trailed off and shrugged. Passively letting them keep the old blind levels. Not quite the efficiency of internet poker huh?

So, I say, "You know you are the boss of this table. Don't be afraid to be the boss." Then she gives me a withering look like I'm the ahole and I'm the villain she should stand up to. What? If anything, I was trying to let her know we were supporting her so she could enforce the rules. Then she says, "Well, I didn't hear the announcement and their blinds were up." Umm... I'm not deaf or blind, I just watched you try to tell them the blinds were higher and then give up. Whatever.

Oh yeah, I chopped the tournament 6 ways. Fun, nice little payday.


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