Big Hand in a tournament...

Still working hard on the project I mentioned a few months back ago, and unfortunately that has curtailed my "pokering" and my blogging a little bit.  I am a little behind where I wanted to be, as the project is tough sledding at times.  Regardless, I somewhat see the finish line so pushing hard to get there.

I have taken on another student, that I'm doing some poker coaching with and I think he's going really benefit to a few tweaks to his game.  Very impressed with some of the skills he already has, and he naturally does some things better then many other players.  As a result, I will be back at Harrahs a little more often then I have been recently.

Also, wanted to give a quick shout out to Kenny Milam who met with the Table Games supervisor at Harrahs on Wednesday to discuss tweaking some of their promotions and tournaments.  I had planned to sit in on that and talk about some other things but fortunately, I was deep in a tournament.  From what Kenny told me there are some bright opportunities ahead for tournament players in advance of the Circuit Event in March.  When things get more formalized we'll have them on the front page.  Also, I'll let you guys know how things go when I get a chance to speak to the Man behind the scene too.

Anyway, Wednesday's poker tournament as mentioned went well this week.  I wish I could attribute it to purely skill but I played a massive hand that propelled me to a heads up chop with Anthony "Binger" Bellao.  Btw, Binger played exceptional all tournament long. Considering, I had position on him for the final two tables with a monster stack and he just kept chipping up, it's hard not to be very impressed with how he played.

Okay, back to the hand, as I promised a couple of people that I would blog about it after it happened.  It was pretty crazy even for the Harrahs Donkley.  I had managed to chip up, maybe to table chip leader (or at least second in chips) when I looked at 6-3 o/s in the small blind.  There were exactly three limpers to me all with big stacks and I had the feeling the big blind was just going to check.  I don't like playing garbage, out of position even when the price is super cheap, but I had chips to spare and I think I'm reasonably good at not getting trapped post flop.  Plus, the possible upside in that spot is so huge, hard to pass up.

Meaning I'm looking for very specific flops and thinking I can maybe felt one of the big stacks in that hand.  The tables were unbalanced as most of the chips were on our table, so with these stacks in play, I think calling was correct.  When the big blind checked behind, it came one of those specific flops.  754 two diamonds.  Gulp in a good way.

I considered betting, not liking the two diamonds on a five way board, but also understanding anybody with a diamond draw in this tournament isn't going anywhere.  Maybe I could get some raggy hands to put chips in play before I flipped with the flush draw that was likely out there.  Several of my opponents weren't above doing just that.  I also thought this flop would miss most people (kind of wrong on that regard).

So, we blinds went check-check.  An aggressive player made a pot size bet.  The next player called.  Okay, might have to shove here but not quite a big enough pot to do...  I'm thinking to myself, when I see the third biggest stack at the table is considering shoving.  I turn to the big blind and say this pot is going to be huge.

He does shove.

I consider can anybody have 8-6 here?  It's possible but not likely, and I'm never folding second nuts on this board in this spot.  I reshove.  The big blind folds.  The next player shoves and the next player shoves.

Oh... somebody has to have 8-6.  Four way all-in always has the nuts, right?

I ask who's got the nuts?  Nobody responds and then I quickly table my 6-3 thinking I'm up against everything and will have to dodge the deck.  Surely, sets or two pairs, and a flush draw, maybe 9-6.  Not even sure I'm over 50% to win this hand with that kind of action against most hands.

Yeah, let's say there is two pair, bottom set, and the nut flush draw, I'm only 41% (thanks poker calculator).

Nope, everybody is disappointed to see my hand, then they start turning over their hands, flush draw, flush draw, flush draw.  Everybody had two diamonds.  I had to dodge five cards in the deck to potentially drag a monster potten.

Somehow, I'm actually almost 70% to win.  Wow.

Yum.  Normally, in those sure spots you never get out clean, but sure enough after it went brick brick, I had almost a quarter of chips in play with a little over two tables left.  Actually, the turn wasn't totally dry, it dropped a three, which meant a six on the river would give us a four way chop.  You can't help but consider that worst case scenario in those spots.  Fortunately, it paired the board (which most times in that spot would be a very bad thing).

Um... yeah, no way we aren't making top five at that point, even in that turbo tournament.  So that was fun.

Alright, til next time...


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