Wednesday, April 05, 2006

MJ'ing the WWdN

That's right. Last night, I was like Michael Jordan in Utah in his last NBA Finals. I have been sick as a dawg since Monday night, to the point that I wasn't able to eat (and retain) anything all of Tuesday, nor still as of midday Wednesday. Nonetheless, despite my sickness and the need for a few breaks during the tournament, I decided to play in the latest WWdN at 8:30pm ET on Tuesday. It's strange, but in a way I have come to think of the Tuesday WWdN as My Weekly Homegame. Now I know everyone else is not at my home, but they're at their homes, and I'm at mine. And now that I know most of the bloggers, for me the game has taken on some of the "home game" feel, as most of the regulars have notes on my play, and I have notes on theirs.

Anyways, I started off the tournament playing my game, stealing pots, being aggressive with my good hands, betting my draws, etc. I slowly limped up from the 1500 starting chips to around 2400 after the first two rounds. I finally made my first double-up at the end of Round 1, which vaulted me into the top few spots of the remaining players (with 70 entrants originally, about 30 or 35 were gone by the end of the first hour). I sat around for most of the first part of Round 2, again chipping up on well-timed blind steals and a few decent hands. One thing to report is that I never sucked out on anyone in the entire tournament that I can recall, although I did take a few bad beats, just luckily not for all my chips as often has been the case for me in WWdN tournaments in the past. Near the end of the second hour, I managed another big pot when I knocked out Craiggor01 when my pocket 9s outlasted his TPTK on a flop of 852 rainbow, and this put me in first place of the 17 players remaining, my first time leading last night's tournament:

It was around this time that Chris (Drewspop) started railbirding me on the Yahoo! IM. We chatted about most of the hands the rest of the way in the tournament, and I have to thank Chris for his repeated pushing of the mantra of laying low a bit with the chip lead and less than two full tables remaining. Still, I managed to go against Chris's advice on more than one occasion, one time moving hard preflop with AJo in late position and no one in the pot yet, and one time making a big raise with pocket 9s in middle position, but for the most part I let Chris's advice sink in, and stayed fairly tight (for me especially!) as I waited for the others to knock each other out of the tournament, and with me feeling like my first WWdN cash was just a hair away.

After trying to stay out of the way for the most part, and yet stealing blinds where possible at minimal risk, I managed to make my way to my fifth blogger final table:

The table included some serious blogger pokerdom, including Wes, BadBlood, Garth, and Columbo, as well as Sires and Rookette who I've known from other WWdN final tables, as well as the massive chip leader brdweb, whose blog I'm not familiar with, and I started off in 4th place at the table.

My strategy for the final table was fairly simple. Play my aggressive style, but with Chris on my IM, also reign myself in a bit to give the smaller stacks the chance to bust each other out. And they did just that. Which was especially good, since I didn't see one normally "playable" hand in probably the last hour or so of the WWdN tourney, so sitting around and letting others bust out really worked well for me as I climbed up the ladder of the cash payouts and managed to stay in the top few spots throughout the final table. When I finally did get a good hand, I was able to bust Blood who did as much pushmonkeying last night in the last hour or so of the tourney as one could possibly do and still remain alive throughout, and that pushed me back up to second place out of 6 remaining:

Which just 6 minutes later became 2nd place out of 4 remaining:

And then 8 minutes later, second place out of 3 remaining players:

But unfortunately there is where my run would end, as the resident luckbox brdweb made a huge fishcall on me with AJo on a flop of 974 rainbow. How he could call my bet with just the overcards is beyond me, but I rightly figured that my K9o had to be the best hand at the time. I guess when you're having cards handed to you all night long, a guy like brdweb can get complacent and just start playing like he is invincible and will always manage to pull the card he needs to win later in the hand. And that is exactly what happened, as the turn came a Jack, he put me the rest of the way allin with his bully-sized stack, and I was compelled to call, and IGH in 3rd place:

I'll take the $84 for sure, and the fun of the experience is worth more than that to me. Again thanks to Chris for railing me the entire way and for his "calming" influence on me as the tournament drew to a close, and congratulations to the luckbox for coming up with his first WWdN title just a few hands after I went out. In all, a very positive experience for me, especially given that I was very much under the weather and could barely devote my full attention to this tournament as it was being played.

As the WWdN tournament wore on, I also entered my usual Tuesday night 10:39pm ET $5 turbo tournament on pokerstars, a tournament which I have largely owned lately. I played very well in the turbo event, but was not able to escape from under the weight of multiple bad beats at the most inopportune times. One of the most difficult beats was when I correctly read a short stack for a stone bluff preflop, and called him with my KK against what turned out to be J5o for him. Here is what happened in the hand (I'll give you a hint -- I pulled another King on the board but still didn't win the hand):

Absolutely infuriating. It was just that kind of tournament for me in the $5 turbo. Nothing went right. The tournament ended for me about 30 minutes in when I managed to dupe a guy to moving in on me with his AQo against my KK. Now I know he has an overcard and there is a decent chance of an Ace hitting the flop, but of course pokerstars hit me over the head with it by producing the following flop:

That basically crippled me, such that when my pocket 10s were bested by some clown's A5o fishcall, I barely even noticed.

Before I end this, I'd also like to post briefly about Monday night since I was too ill on Tuesday to relay the previous night's events. Iggy's WSOP satellite tournament was an absolute blast. Although it went late into the night before a winner was declared, I loved the structure of the tournament in that it was closer to the WSOP structure, which has long blind rounds, much much longer than anything you'd ever find being spread online by any of the major poker sites. And the most amazing part was definitely when Iggy ponied up $200-some of his own money so that a second blogger could go to the WSOP. Honestly, how many of us out there would have done the same thing in Iggy's shoes? I'm sure many of us (myself included) think it was just about the single coolest move ever made by anyone in the history of mankind, but would I have thought to do this on my own? I'm thinking probably not. So to Iggy, I bow and say "I'm not worthy, I'm not worthy" a la the old Wayne's World skits. What a guy, and what a tournament. And I especially enjoyed busting Luck080, winner of one of the two WSOP seats from Iggy's tournament, fairly early on in the WWdN last night.

I also did really well in an 18-person turbo sng on Monday night. I used my aggression to its fullest extent, and managed to catch a few cards, which is when I am at my most dangerous given my style of play (who isn't?). I must have slow-played 50 hands of varying strengths throughout the tournament, culminating in getting the third-place guy to move in on me with bottom pair when I had second pair here to get heads-up:

As is typical of pokerstars lately, however, my nearly 5-to-1 chip lead in heads-up play was not destined to hold up in this thing, as a few hands later saw the following hand, where I knew from the betting I had the better hand going in:

which quickly turned into this on the flocking river:

and from there I ended up tilting my way into second place for a cool $81:

Lastly, Monday night also saw me venturing back into the cash games for a bit on Full Tilt last night, in a vain attempt to clear the never-clearing bonus structure at ftp. I won about $7 or $8 over my first 30 minutes or so there, but then was reminded soberly as to exactly why I try to stay away from the cash games in general online:

Hoyazo's NLH Cash Game Rule #1: Any time you flop a boat with a hidden pair, and end up losing it all to flopped quads, it is definitely time to pack it in. F you Full Tilt for doing that. It is inexcusable.

Before I end this post, I think it is fair, just to balance things out, for me to show one of the extremely lucky, suckouty kind of flops that do happen to me every once in a long while. This one was with 10 players remaining in the 18 sng I mentioned above, and sent me directly to the final table with a significant chip stack:

I didn't make the straight flush in the end, but lord knows that guy was not happy with the way the flop came out in that hand.

OK that's all for now. This is about as uber as any of my posts are gonna get, so I hope you like what I've had to share here. I'm going to go try to keep down some coca-cola now, and if that works maybe later today I will eat dinner, for my first morsel of food of any kind since about 40 hours ago now. Blech.


Blogger surflexus said...

Hey, Just hit me up on IM tonight or tomorrow night and I'll help you set it

5:19 PM  
Blogger Matt Silverthorn said...

Nice job in the WWdN! About time you cashed in one of these things. We all knew it was coming sooner or later.

9:47 PM  
Blogger drewspop said...

Exactly Matt. I was so sick of hearing the whining, I kept telling him, "You can't get sucked out on if you fold" ;)

Good job man.

1:16 AM  

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