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Showing posts with label trip report. Show all posts
Showing posts with label trip report. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Stars and Stripes


Yesterday Heaven and took a trip up to Bell Gardens, California to play in the first event of the Bicycle Casino's Stars and Stripes tournament series (a middle tournament series with buy-in's ranging from $100 to $500 for each event). This particular event was $100+$25 (!) No Limit Holdem.

On the upside, everyone who registered got a free Stars and Stripes hat so it was really $100+$25-$7 or so as MellowYellow from the Low Limit Forum pointed out.

The blind increases at this tournament were every 30 minutes and all 429 players started with 1000 chips. Heaven busted early when her straight on the turn was beaten by a boat on the river. I lasted until about 60/429 but still out of the money.

Two interesting hands came up. In the first when the blinds were 25-50 I raised in late position to 200T with QsJs. The BB, who I had covered by about 500T reraised to 500T (about a third of his stack at the time) and I called. The flop came As Ks 5c (!) and the BB instantly went all-in. I thought about this for a while. The instant all-in seemed like a move he had planned before ever seeing the flop so it could mean pretty much any pocket pair and maybe a hand like AK. Some of these hands are monsters on this flop but I had at least 12 outs to win and more if he had a hand like 99 or less. On the other hand I'd be down to 500T if I lost. After about 30 seconds I called the all-in because even though it was a gamble, with the 1050 already in the pot + my >40% draw to the nuts I felt it was a good time to gamble and get a larger than average stack. We turned up our hands and it turns out he flopped a set with 55 so it was off to the race. A turn Q and river Q left me with losing trips and a tiny stack.

I had to make a few all-in moves after this with Ax and won or chopped them all and managed to build my stack a big -- enough to keep up with the blind increases for the most part when the final hand of the evening for me came up with blinds at 300-600 and 100 antes and seven players in the hand (the pot before any action was 1600). I had was in the SB with 2800 left and a stack smaller than me went all in. Another player right after him with a medium-large stack went all in and I looked at my cards and found 88. Now I'm looking for a spot to put my money in but of course calling my chips off after two people had gone all in before me. I thought about this hand for a little bit also, but my feeling was that the first person was desperate and they most likely had an Ax hand like A4o and I also felt the player that went all in after them knew that and had an Ace with a larger kicker or perhaps a medium or small pocket pair and wanted to shut out the rest of the actions and kill the blinds. If both players had an Ax hand my pocket 8's were looking pretty good. I called. Player one turned over A9o and player two turned over AJo so my call definitely was worth it and if I won the hand I'd be an average chip stack. Unfortunately the flop came 9KT and the turn came a Q killing my hand entirely as the AJ made the nut straight. Still I was happy enough with that play and enjoyed playing live for a change.

Tuesday, August 31, 2004

WPT Legends of Poker

I got to watch a bit of the final day (before the final six tomorrow) action of the World Poker Tour Legends of Poker event at the Bicycle Club casino in Bell Gardens, California.

I wasn't there to play--at least not to play in the $5000 event--more as moral support for my significant other (SS) who was participating in the Ladie's Poker Party (first place would win a spot on the WPT Ladies Invitational event which is filming September 1st).

Before she went in to start her tournament we spotted Clonie Gowen and Evelyn Ng milling about and I was almost run over by Shana Hiatt and a small group moving with her (she would also be playing in the ladies event). Access to the final few tables of the WPT main event was suprisingly easy to get and I was able to watch Doyle Brunson and Jennifer Harmon play a few hands from my vantage. I didn't get to see any huge deciding pots or exciting races but I did get to see a lot of pots won without anyone ever showing a hand. Now that's good poker.

Pokerwise I did put in some obligatory time in the 3-6 holdem game and ended up a 10 big bet loser (the deciding hand was when my AA was cracked by 88 on the turn when his third 8 miraculously appeared) after three hours when SS was eliminated during the 5th blind escalation from her tournament when her all in with TT vs another player with 77 ended in tragedy when the person in question hit a 7 on the turn. She did pretty well and felt she was playing well the whole tournament and managed to eliminate Kathy Liebert with her JJ vs KL's 77.

I can definitely see the lure that the WPT has brought to poker. The air of the poker room was charged with excitement and it was pretty neat to be surrounded by celebrities (even if they are "just" poker celebrities). If you get a chance to participate in a WPT event (or even just railbird one for a little while) I highly recommend it.