WSOP Academy, 2nd in a small event at Beau, Donkley at Harrahs, and IP Bad News

Just read through the title before I started typing and it seems like I ended it with I pee bad news.  Maybe if I had some snow, I could test that out.  Yes, I'm juvenile.

WSOP Academy

First things first, I'll be working the WSOP Academy at Harrahs this weekend as the local "pro."  Inexplicably, Harrahs will also be hosting a WSOP Main Event satellite (during this event) on Saturday.  Huh?  It would be one thing if they started it after the Academy, they could have brought in the out of towners that are coming to the Academy and want to test their games and some of the local players.  Doing it concurrently just makes no sense.  Besides the fact nobody knew about his until Wednesday.

I would love it if Harrahs New Orleans would just give GCP a  call.  I'd be happy to help them massively improve their bottom line when it comes to poker.  So many little things they could do, cost efficient things, that could put them where they belong on the Gulf Coast.  Instead it feels like with poker they are just throwing darts haphazardly without a target and they never tell any of their customers anything.

Also, going on a short drive away is the WSOP-C event at the IP.  Why have a Main Event Satellite on a weekend everybody that would play it is at another WSOP event just down the road.  I had been hoping to find a sub for me to work the academy so I could play flight A (of three flights) on friday and if I made it to day two be free to travel to Biloxi on Sunday for day two.  It didn't quite work out, as most of the local pros are focused on the IP or the Saints opening game.

I'm excited about the Academy though.  Anytime you hear different viewpoints on playing poker I think you improve.  At a minimum the insight allows you to adjust against other players and at it's best allows you to rework your game.  Layne Flack and Jeff Madsen will be the head guys there with 9 bracelets between them, so they know how to finish and how to get to the end.  Also, they should be entertaining.

Anybody want to attend they have a couple of spots open with a locals discount.  Hit me at wild bill AT gulfcoastpoker.net for details.

SECOND IN PRELIM AT THE BEAU

Man I wanted first place pretty bad.  However, the kid, Jonathan Hart from Jackson, MS that beat me heads up played great all day and deserved it.

I enjoyed the write up by Aaron Hendrix.  It's also insightful to see how other people perceive what you are doing.  On the final hand, he mentioned I cut my chips indicating I was strong enough to raise but just limped.  I didn't realize I was giving off that vibe.  In truth, I had just lost a big pot to Jonathan and wanted to see where I stood with my stack and how to go forward.  I was counting it and thinking.

I came to the conclusion that if I raised, and he reraised me, potentially I couldn't shove and get him off any hands.  He's probably committed once he reraised.  My hand was strong enough that I was fine getting it in, BUT I thought there were some other ways I could win the hand.  For example, if I limped and he raised I could shove and he could fold a lot of hands without it getting to show down.  I was also fine if he checked behind with AJ in my hand in position.  I was risking losing some value with that hand but I think limping allowed me more ways to win.

There was some meta game play too.  I had limped the button a few times and I thought Jonathan was going to be ready to fire one of his biggish raises to steal pretty soon, so I might be able to get a big chunk of chips without showdown.

Turns out he had pocket queens and wasn't going anywhere.  What's elucidating is that if by cutting my chips like that he also got the read I was strong I was really trapped.  Kind of a cooler hand because with my stack size at that point I'm happy to get it in with AJ though of course I'd rather a pot with some raises in it, without cards on the table.  

Hendrix also referenced an Ace high call I made and said I put my chips in based on the size of the pot at the river.  Not really true.  I made the comment when my opponent went all in that I should have beat him into the pot based on this.  However, those spots are tricky, can you really bluff there when you know almost every hand has to call you.  You can't.  So, shipping it there looks like I misread him earlier in the hand, since I have to call just about anything silly to ship if you missed.  The river also put a third club on board.  Odd, that I'd say this with Ace high, but I was contemplating making a hero fold with it.  My gut told me he had KQ (two overs and open ended draw) and that Ace high was good, and the club falling might have been enough for him to think he could steal the pot.  After a good while, I picked up some confirming physical information and I called.  If he reveal a little bit I might have made the bad fold.

Earlier I called with King high which I thought was a better played hand.  I don't remember it now but it was basically based on read too.

I played a satellite and got knocked out AA v. QQ with eight left playing for three seats.  Think I would have won the seat had he not spiked the queen on the river.  I run so BAD with Aces in critical hands.

In that satellite I made a call with Q high.  Pretty standard I think.  SB completed I had Qrag o/s and checked.  Flop came AKx.  Check, check.  Turn x.  Check, Check.  River x.  He bet a smallish bet into me.

This hand I think we are both confident neither has an Ace or a King.  I think if he made a small pair he's got showdown value and would rather check call or check check.  Betting on the river is likely only a steal.  I have the nut no hand with Q.  The way the hand played out he either had some giant monster or nothing and nothing was far more likely.  So I called.  I was short stacked at the time so it wasn't easy but the extra chips allowed me to be in contention later.

HARRAHS WEEKLY

Played on Wednesday and played fairly badly.  I made two calls for 1600 each early on which I could never win on, and on one at BEST I was chopping but unlikely even that.  I had AJ on a AKJ flop.  Turn another King.  River a Queen.  There are zero hands I beat and at best I chop with A9 which she never has--so fold, 100% of the time.  On the turn I knew I was beat and you could argue if I had listened to my gut I could have found a fold on the turn.

The other one, a different lady my friend Ms. Joan, rivered broadway and led into me.  It was disguised and despite my two pair in a vaccuum I think more reasons to fold then to call.  Not quite as bad but the real mistake was not pounding her weakish looking flop bet and dragging the pot then.  Thought she might make another weak bet on the turn and I could get more value but she didn't.

So... that was officially the point that I turned the corner from making smart calls to being a bit of a station.  There is an ebb and flow I go through where I lock in and play really good poker and then when I over think things.  Think I mentioned it in my last post.  It's something I have to be on guard for especially with the IP on the horizon.  Need to get back to that groove and just lock in.  Made a bad call when the board got ugly on my hand in the satellite early too, so the the indicators were there that things were shifting.

IP Bad News

Planned a big trip with all my college friends recently.  Of course it would be during the Main Event of the IP.  After they moved it up last year I thought this September date would be a good one.  My wife is also due at the beginning of October so was looking to slip one last trip in before a few months of sleepness nights.

Now, I can't go after the satellites or the Main Event.  I've had a lot of success there so I'm mad I won't be back.  Still, feel like I have unfinished business from last year when my Aces were cracked by tens (did I mention I run so bad with Aces in critical hands) who went runner runner for straight after we got it all in preflop with other action in the hand.  That pot would have carried me into the money I think and allowed me to contend for more.  Also, if there is a tournament I want to win it's the WSOP-C IP Main Event.  Second as I mentioned is a bitter pill.  Maybe next year.

Anyway, I'll see people for the noon event Friday.

**Let me bitch about Aces some more.  I finished second but during that tournament the one walk I got in the big blind in that tournament I had Aces.  One guy who limped called anything on every hand but one, didn't do it on when he limped and I had Aces, he somehow folds.   Even when I win with them I win nothing.  I don't even bother telling my wife now, as she's long advocated I just fold them (which is ridiculous results oriented thinking BUT I would have survived at least a hand or two longer in a ton of tournaments I've played with real money on the line).

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