Sunday, November 6, 2011

Chop or Gamble? Gamble FTW!

Palace Hayward bounty tournament 11/6/11

After having just spent a long weekend losing in Vegas, I returned to the local card room where I play tournaments every weekend.  I was feeling a little reckless this particular morning, I guess because I didn't feel well and didn't mind if I went home early today.

That worked out to my advantage early on, when I went all-in with a flush draw against a guy with a huge stack (8-10 times mine) who I knew would call.  Luckily I hit the flush on the river and doubled up.

Later in the tournament I had a couple suck outs where I went in with a pair, ended up against an over pair, end wound up hitting my set.  I was enjoying one of the other guys at the table because he would call just about everything, and since I usually don't play with mediocre hands, I was winning a lot from him every time I bet against him.

It eventually got down to the final three, so I was in the money.  After all the bounties (of which I won none), the price money was $700, $300, and $90 on a $90 entry fee.  There was a proposal on the table from the chip leader to chop where he gets $500 me and the other guy split the remainder for $295 each.

I was feeling cocky, so I said no thanks, let's play a few more hands.

On the very next hand, I got pocket threes and went all in.  I was called by the short stack (only slightly shorter than mine, same guy who was calling all my bets earlier).  This could likely be a bad ending filled with regret, and I knew it.

He turns over pocket 9's, and I knew it didn't look good for me.

As the board unfolded, there was nothing there for me....until.....the river comes a 3!  Once again I hit my set and take the dude out...and then there were two...

Now I was willing to talk deal.  Me and the other guy now had about equal stacks, though I was slightly ahead.  He was up for a 50/50 chop so I took it.  I know these heads-up games can go on for a while and neither of us had enough of an advantage to mean anything.

So we split the money $500 a piece, and I technically took first place since I had more chips!  Hooray, finally a win!!!

Vegas Summary

Well a four day poker marathon in Vegas has come to an end (see previous several posts).  All in all I entered 14 tournaments, played for over 30 hours, made 6 final tables, and won nothing.  Best place finish was fourth, one away from the money.

I had a lot of fun though, and got to be part of a lot of fun hands.  I think my skills improved.  I expected Vegas poker tables to be full of donkeys who were on vacation, but all things considered I'd say the talent was generally better in Vegas compared to the card rooms back in the Bay Area.