Thursday, June 2, 2011

WSOP Start

I just got home after busting the 1st event I played, the $1500 limit omaha 8 hi lo. I played 9.5 1 hr levels and busted during the last level of the day. I'm not that upset though for a couple of reasons. 1st is that I felt like I played really well, especially in a game which isn't my specialty. I know I'm +ev in this event but after playing today I feel like I'm hugely +ev in future limit om8 events up to a $5k buyin or so. This isn't to brag but to instill a self confidence in me going forward for this game. If there's one quality about me that has contributed to a lot of my longterm success, it's the ability to look at myself and assess w/ near certainty where I stand in relation to everybody else in poker.

When I reflect back on past om8 tournaments I play, I see the mistakes I made (just like I've done w/ other forms of poker)...this is a sign that I'm getting better and seeing what the right plays are. Today I felt like I played near perfect except for an obvious river value bet I missed (also compounded by not paying attention to my opponent's stack, so 2 missteps that led to 1 error). I might've made a couple of loose calls preflop but they weren't mistakes because they were situational and I felt the worse shape I could be was about even money.

I ran pretty bad during the last 2 levels, including losing 2 pots where I'm a big fav to scoop going into the river, instead had to settle for a chop when my opponents got there w/o much equity for half. I also folded some big hands including 2458 w/ 3 spades on a A77Q9 board where I turned a flush and just c/c'ed turn then c/f'ed river vs. an old guy where I'm close to 100% sure I'm beat; another hand where I c/f'ed to a 1 big bet w/ 3 big bets left on the turn w/ AJT2 on a J932 2 flush board vs another old guy and old lady (older people tend to "have it" a lot more in this game than other games), the old guy showed a set of 99s to scoop so I was right. My reads were spot on today and I took optimal lines whenever I played a hand so again I felt really happy w/ my play overall.

Anyway the 2nd reason I'm not upset for spending all day playing a tournament then busting late (like most others) is because I feel like I gain a little bit of experience every time I play, and the longer the better. Granted in nl tournaments I don't get that feeling much since I feel like I know almost everything I need to know (although picking up on tournament regs' playing styles and habits is valuable) but in other games I don't play as much I'm always observing and trying to gain that valuable experience.

As for the rest of the WSOP I'm planning on playing a lot of events and as long as I feel good mentally and physically I'm planning on playing pretty much every day. Since I'm a well rounded player I'll be playing in all sorts of events, mostly nl and pl hold'em but a lot of the mix game events as well. My ultimate goal is to win a bracelet or 2 (or more) and to know that I played the best that I can play.

I am sacrificing time that I could be playing the juicy cash games during the WSOP. I'm sure my hrly is higher playing cash games than tournaments but I just enjoy WSOP tournaments so much and I'm hungry for my 1st ever bracelet, so there's a lot of happiness and life ev associated w/ playing these WSOP events.

Also I posted in the CR forum but if I make a final table, anybody from here that come sweats me at a ft I will buy them dinner at my celebratory dinner (limited to $1k total for you guys, but not necessarily for the whole bill which will be bigger because of friends and family that will be there). Obviously I'll have to make a ft 1st which is not easy.

Other observations at the WSOP so far:

-Turnout so far doesn't seem affected by Black Friday. They had 128 for the $25k hu and a record # 925 entrants for today's $1500 om 8, granted it's only 3 events so far (other being employees' event which attracted a big # as well)...I'm sure the main event will be lower than years past though

-The featured table is a lot more elaborate...bigger and more eye catching....too bad only 3 events are supposed to be televised (WSOP rematches, $50k Players' Championship, and the $10k main event)

-Very few patches being worn, especially after yesterday when James Bord confronted John Juanda about FTP and security guards had to be called in...after all Juanda was wearing a FTP patch and was an easy mark; note: I wore a CR patch today, more brownie pts due my way from the higher ups at CR, even more so when I win my bracelet w/ it on ;)

-Lots of cash games going on...biggest I saw was a $200/$500/$1k PLO game and it was almost full

-Lots of railbirds as usual

-Phil Ivey is suing FTP (for $150 mil) and is abstaining from this year's WSOP (he isn't really boycotting it..that's just the wrong choice of words) for my thoughts on this, good for him, and a noble act from him, but put me in the boat that wonders if he did it for us, or because that was the only option he had for numerous reasons, including keeping that indestructible and and almost mystifying image he's always had...other theories were running around as well, including wanting to get out of his no compete cause

-Met Gakn29, a fellow CR vid maker today, nice guy...saw Mement Mori but not sure if he noticed me (or even knows me!)

Finally it looks like I'm getting a little more recognition with the poker media because I saw that PokerNews was updating my chip counts (1st time ever). For those of you that want to sweat me, follow on PokerNews or better yet, follow me on twitter located to the right of this blog (I update every couple of hrs, including stack sizes, notables on table, interesting or amusing hands, etc.)...after all, you may get a free dinner out of it.


  1. Hi!
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  2. GL sir! Run good!

  3. Hi there John, just started following you listening to cash plays and didn't know you were the same person on cardrunners, anyways..i really enjoy your thoughts about poker/life/mindset. I to have a family and kids to support through poker, most online...but trying to conquer the live poker starting at 2/5nl. Anyways, gl at the wsop!!!!

    Also if you don't mind adding me to your blog:



  4. Tx Jeff, added your blog. Gl to you as well.