Sunday, December 4, 2005

Bellagio $5k

Yesterday I played the Bellagio 5k. (Hour levels, start with 10k)

I got into town Friday night and played a one table satellite. I think I really played well - I never really had a big showdown until we were three handed. I had maybe 11k in the BB, SB had 9.5k and the button had the rest of the 50k in play. Folded to the SB who made it 1600 (blinds 300/600), I called with 86o in the BB, the flop came 6 high and my opp moved in. I really thought he had two big cards, so I called, and he had AK and the board came 65342 so we chopped. I had a diamond draw so I was a big favorite going into the river. I ended up getting heads up but I was down 10k to 40k with blinds 500-1000. On the very first hand my opp limped on the button and I found KK in the BB. I made it 3000 and he called. The flop was Q77 and we got it all in and I was surprised to be behind his T7, it held up and I was sent packing in 2nd.

I decided to buy in the next day anyway. The field had 200 runners. At my starting table I recognized colson10 and introduced myself (having played against him a bunch online). I was in the 2 seat and he was in the 7 seat. WPT winner Arnold Spee was in the 8 seat, Scotty Nguyen in the 5 seat and eventually Max Pescatori filled in the 3 seat. The first thing that shocked me was how big of a dick Arnold Spee was. He started arguing with the dealer before the first hand was dealt, that's a new one. We actually had the floor come to the table during the first hand to settle the all important "you washed the cards before you were told" argument. Spee played well early, getting his stack to 13k when he got involved with the 4 seat. The 4 seat limp called, the flop came T54 two spades and the 4 seat check raised big on the flop. Arnold immediately re-raised and they get it all in, 6s4s for the 4 seat, QQ for Arnold. A 4 comes on the turn and Spee went pretty nuts, calling the guy adonk, saying it was ridiculous, etc. I was shocked at how fast he played the queens myself. The very next hand the 4 seat limps with AA and gets Spee to inexplicably put his last 3000 in (60 big blinds!) with KJo and he busts.

My first big hand would come with the 4 seat. I was down to 9000 when I found AK in the BB. I raised the 4 seat (he was the only limper) to 300 and we saw a flop of K72 all hearts. I couldn't remember if I had the Ah, but I bet anyway and the 4 seat called. On the turn, a 9s came off, and I finally had to look at my cards (and didn't find the Ah) and checked. I was practically turning my hand over that I didn't have a big heart, and when the 4 seat bet 1200 I had a decision to make. He could easily be limp calling with any two here. It certainly felt like a semi bluff, but he could easily have turned two pair, has a set or even flopped a flush. I decided to call the 1200 and check call the river if the fourth heart didn't show. The river was a blank and I checked again. My opponent bet 2600 fairly quickly. Now I was a bit sick because if I called and lost I'd be down to 4500 or so. But I went with my read and called and my opponent showed 89 no heart, MHIG and I am up to 13000 or so.

I didn't play an interesting pot for a lonnnnnnng time. Colson10 had lost a few tough pots and was down to 4500 or so but he was hanging in there. Eventually Max in seat 3 busts, Scotty in seat 4 busts and Rene Angelil takes seat 3 and Harry Demetriou takes seat 5. Colson finally gets his double up when we opens for 1200 (blinds 200-400) with only about 4000 behind and the BB calls. The flop is all rags and the BB jams with 9hTh, no pair no draw (ok, there was one heart) and Colson calls with QQ (turn comes a heart but Colson dodges the river). I have chipped up to about 16k at this point where I hang out for a long time. I'm paying a lot of blinds/antes but winning enough on preflop raises to stay steady. Colson picks up another big hand when Harry raises on the button to 2000 , SB jams for about 6000 and Colson jams for about 10000 out of the BB. Harry calls them both with TT and SB has 66 and Colson has AA. The board reads AT986 for set>set>set, don't see that too often but Colson now moves above 20k. I recommend to myself to get aces and get two way action.

I pick up TT and make it 1200 from early position and the 4 seat jams overtop. I had to call 5k, I didn't think he had a big hand, but I remember doing the math and I wasn't getting 2:1. If I called and lost I would be at about 9000, but if I won I'd be up around 25k. I called and my opp rolled over A8o and he made aces full to squash my TT. I must say, that is a really annoying thing. I played really well up until now and then lose one showdown when I'm a substantial fav. I don't let it bother me though... Later Paul Darden shows up in seat 3 and Barry Greenstein in seat 6. Paul has a decent stack but Barry is short. Paul loses a big pot to seat 4 all in preflop with AQ against JT (the guy that beat my TT sucks out again and has a decent stack now) and then this pot comes up. Seat 1 is pretty much a donkey with a huge stack. A hand comes up where seat 1 raises and Paul smooth calls for a big % of his chips. I put him on a pretty big hand preflop. The flop comes J92 and seat 1 bets 4500 and Paul instantly calls. Now I'm pretty sure he has a set because he has already put about 40% of his stack in. The turn is a blank, JJ is still the nuts and seat 1 says, "I guess you are pretty pot committed here" and then proceeds to jam. Paul insta calls with JJ. Seat 1 flips up KT and the Q comes on the river. One of the most bizarre hands ever. Nothing but saying your opp is pot committed and then jamming with a gutshot when your opp has shown enormous strength.

So I'm down to 6200 in the SB on the first hand of the 300/600 level. Folds to me in the SB and its pretty much jam with anything decent here. I find Q7o and jam and the BB hems and haws over T4o and folds, saying he would have called if they were suited (bad beat for me that he wasn't suited I guess). I pick up the blinds and then the 7 seat limps into the pot and I find AA on the button. I decide to just jam again, hoping it will look like I'm stealing... the SB thinks for a bit and calls , limper folds, 99 for the SB. Flop is 9 high, A on the turn and the 8d comes on the river (sure looked like the 9 at the time!). MHIG and I'm up above 16k again.

Fast forward to my bustout hand, I still have about 16k, blinds 400/800, 66 people left, avg stack 30k. Big stack seat 1 open limps in LP. He has pretty much never done this but just raised the hand before and I think he is taking the pedal off a bit but still has a hand he wants to play. I find QJo and call behind. Jimmy Tran now occupies the 4 seat and he calls on the button. The blinds come along and we have a rare limped pot. The flop is Q96 and its checked to the big stack who bets 4k. Two people have shown no strength, so he could be taking a shot at the pot here. He could also be betting a semi-strong hand like 77, JT, J9, etc. I decide to call the bet, hoping everyone else folds and I can re-evaluate on the turn. Everyone else does fold, the turn is a T giving me an open ender also. The big stack jams on me, I have about 10k and there is about 22.5k in the pot. I really think at this point he has KQ, JT, J9, QT or QJ. I am getting over 2:1, and I decided to call. Unfortunately he had KQ, which leaves me with only 7 outs and I miss them and I'm gone.

I thought I played just fine really, not too happy about the bustout hand but so it goes.

December has already been brutal for me, I'm down about 10k already and if I dont' cash next week that will be another 15k loss! Back home on Sunday, Vegas again next Friday...woohooo.

Edit : Congrats Colson10 on getting third place for over $100k. Damn nice job coming back from some tough going early on. VN sir.

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