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Monday, December 14, 2009

Sunday night....back to work tomorrow.

So..when we last left off I was errantly telling you I flopped a King with the guy holding, and putting me all in with AQ. Yeah...that might have caused some confusion huh? My bad, and I just edited that post. It was a Queen high flop? Probably typed K because that was what I was needing...or a diamond. Sorry.

Well, that SNG finally did kick off. On the first hand I would get JJ. I ended up winning a nice pot to start out good. But I would inevitably lose. Then I would lose another. And another. Then chop one three ways, and lose another...finishing 3rd when I really thought I had it won. So instead of going to meet my boy Charlie "Smoke" Oliver and Tim (Nickname Pending) Hebert and others down at Rick's Caberet I instead decided to call it a night and walk the 2 blocks to my hotel, Pelham Hotel. I got in at 2am, and was asleep by 2:30.

Why am I staying at this place? Well...there is some weird shit going on with Harrah's. And I am going to tread lightly because they are treating me so well, and just for the fact that they let me back in. But I think its even got the poker operation's people irritated. See, they 'say' that they 'hold' a block of 400 rooms strictly for poker players at the Hilton and at the Doubletree. Now that is a LOT of rooms for just poker players. And we ALL know that us poker players tend to double up on rooms. So you are talking about approxiamately 600 players if all those rooms are being reserved by poker players. So, they have a disclaimer on the site saying 'all reservations must be made by Nov. 21st to ensure a room' and you have to let them know you are coming for the poker tournament.

This happens here all the time. And its the only tournament that I travel to go play where they claim to be 'sold out' of rooms a full WEEK ahead of the event. I'm pretty sure that most players are like me, in that they make their travel and hotel arrangements at the last minute, relatively speaking. So when the majority of us show up, and there are NO rooms...what do we do? Well, I got on and found this Pelham place...that looked like it was going to be a bit of a russian roulette deal. Read the reviews, some horrible, some okay, few very good. But shockingly...I have been very pleased. Getting good maid service every day. Good water pressure. Temperature in the room is okay. King size bed...decent mattress. All the lights work. Good closet space. A safe. Zero issues to speak of. And very close to Harrah's. The day I got there, Larry Barnett the poker room manager, actually called me to tell me they had a room open up if I needed it. So that was very cool, and much appreciated, but I was all set. And at $57 a night, which is less than the $60 poker rate at Hilton.

But this brings us back to the actual issue. As I look at these fields we have been getting for the events...all at or below 200 a tourney...I have to ask the obvious question...."who is staying in these 400 rooms at the poker rate?" Clearly not poker players. 400 to 600 players aren't coming to New Orleans and then NOT playing. So it has me thinking that their other departments are putting those rooms in their pockets and using them for their own customers. Its not cool. Not at all. I don't know how they are going to fix it. And frankly, I don't have the energy or the desire to pursue it. I am kind of tired of fighting the good fight for all you poker players...because it always ends up with me getting shafted by someone or some place. Not worth it anymore. But...if you ever decide to come play in New Orleans in the this damn thing two weeks in advance if you want that $60 rate. That...or do something really cool. Get together with 5 or 6 of your friends and rent one of these super cool houses they have over here for 10 to 15 days. You can get them very cheap...and it gives you a real flavor of the 'real' New Orleans, which is kind of fun. Plus if you can get in with 5 or 6 people you sincerely makes for a really fun experience.

Meanwhile...the actual poker tourneys have been great. By now you guys know I finished 12th in the first one...missing the final table by 3, and 8th in the next one...which was my first ever cash in a 6-handed event. That was pretty cool, but I sure wanted to make that 6-handed final table. In both tourneys I was short on chips all day...then made a meteorical rise in about Level 10 of both. The structures are just great...which is, as predicted by me earlier, resulting in a LOT of good players making it down into the money and deeper. That is what I love to see. I hope some of these other casinos and other tournament directors are paying attention to whats going on here. They have found the perfect balance. Not too many chips. Which always encourages these bozo/moron players to constantly overbet their hands. The perfect amount. And combined with a perfect structure...we are getting deep and everyone seems to have 20 big blinds or more...which really changes the way things play out. Granted, you are always going to get your shove-tard...we all know who they are...don't think I have to call anyone out on that one!

Yeah, Friday sucked. Got taken out on that KQ vs AQ hand. I would lose with the same hand on Saturday in the $550. And it really sucked. I started the day really good. Had a lot of good hands and was chipping up nicely. Made quad 6's on a hand. Flopped a set of ACES twice. Flopped a set of Kings...that became a boat. Then had a hand where I almost wanted to kill myself, but instead got doubled up. Guy limps behind me for 200. I look down at 10-9..on the button...and decide to call. Grab two and throw them in. Oh SHIT! Two purples! I even blurt out..."Oh..SHIT!" Well,"Magnet" in the BB...thats his nickname...I can't recall his actual name...CALLS the 1000. Great. The guy behind me folds. Well the flop comes 10-7-8. Whoa. Not bad. He bets out 1500. I look at him. Then say "dude, I know you are just playing at me. You know I screwed up on that raise...but I actually nailed that flop...."  To which he responds..."You think so huh? So did I!" Hmmm.....

Tough spot. He has me covered. I have about 13,500 behind. I just cant find a good reason to fold there. But I know how this guy plays too. If I re-raise...I am giving him position to re-pop me. And then I am really in a pickle. So I just decide to go all in. Well, when he SNAP CALLS I figure...fuck, this guy must have ....jeezuz...what? He called 1000 preflop!!!??? 6-9? A set of 7's? or 8s? Yeah that makes more sense. Guess what he turns over? EIGHT-FREAKING-NINE! yah! I am not kidding. The turn and the river brick...and I now had around 27k. Awesome.

But then I move tables. And rather quickly, with the blinds at 150-300 I raise UTG to 1100. This guy...oh this guy. He had two moves....all throughout the tourney. ALL IN...or LIMP IN. Guy almost NEVER raised. Either LIMPED...or SHOVED. Well, he shoves. It folds around to me. Oh..yeah. I have JJ. Now this guy's ALL IN means almost nothing to me. I'm thinking AK. But more than anything, I just want this guy gone. Its 6600 more to call. I call. He has QQ. Fuck. Flop...Q-9-3. Shit. 10 on the turn, oh! bout an 8 or a K? What? A four instead? Great. Grrrr...

This same guy would pull this same move with QQ two other times. Once he was up against JJ again. The other time...he was up against KK...and luckboxes himself a Q on the turn. What a joke. Right about Level 8 I go card dead. Bad. This guy on the button when I was in the BB was preying on my blind all game and it was getting old. Granted, he did show me some decent hands. But I think when he raised from 400 to 1600...and I folded A9 face up...only to have him SHOW ME A9...that it was then that I became hell bent on busting him. Or, up through him. So when he raises me for the umpteenth 250/ 2200...and I look at KQd....I feel pretty good about my chances. But with 14k....I just don't think shoving is the way to go. I call. The flop comes K-Q-7. Yahtzee! I decide to bet out though. For two reasons....(a) there are two hearts out there and (b) my check raising hadn't been going to well the last couple of days. Plus...this guy hated to fold after he had raised preflop. He raises me. Hmmm. Really? Does this guy have KK or QQ? Holy shit, how bad would that be?

What makes this whole thing worse? How about the fact that this whole tourney I have managed to fade my two biggest 'cooler dealers' the whole time? Erin...who is married to one of them. No idea HOW I have faded her all week. And Nga...pronounced 'Nah' as I gonna make it through your down without getting put on the rail? Na! So when she pushed in I had that sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach.

I decide folding here is not in the plans...and I shove all in. He snap calls. Oh shit. But he turns over AA. Good, I think. No 7! NO A! Turn is a 4. Okay,, cool! No 7, no 4, no A!!!! River? FOUR! Son of a bitch! Come on! FML FML FML FML!!!!!!!

I gather my shit. I storm off...out to the hall....which was empty, thank god....curse, throw my hat....curse some more...and walk into the mens room, lock myself in a stall...and just sit there. Fuming. Then Matt Russell texts me.

Shit. Forgot, we had plans to meet for dinner at Besh Steakhouse. Love that place. And I was only 10 minutes away from dinner break. I should have been going there with a shit pile of chips. Dammit! Well, I didn't want to ruin his dining experience, so I did my best to shake it off. Meanwhile, Squirrel was trying to talk me into coming home for the night to see her and the 'kids' (my dogs) then go back the next day. One drawback was that it had been raining like a MOFO all freaking day and night. But...the thought of getting the hell outa there for the night was kind of appealing.

So I go and have dinner with Matt. It was awesome as usual. Corn meal fried oysters as an appetizer. Organic mixed green salad. They have this amazing bread and pate butter too. For dinner I had the wild boar with cheese grits. Amazing. One of them had the Ribeye, the other had the soup sampler then ...mmm...can't remember, but we all sampled a bit of each others meals, and they were all great. Had two nice glasses of Pinot Noir. Yeah...the meal really took my mind off the lousy tournament exit. And Matt is a genuinely good guy, who I like hanging out with. He lives in Houston and is married. We were joined by another of his buddies from Houston, who I play with a lot...but for the life of me now can't remember his name...sorry man, if you are reading this.

So I did decide to come home. Squirrel was very happy to see me. She had a hot bath waiting for me with candles and everything. So cute. She's such a great wife. We had a wonderful evening. Stayed up a little TOO late...and so when 9am rolled around, I just wasn't feeling the desire or ability to get up and get on the road to play at noon. I'm kind of glad too, since I heard less than 100 showed up. This small field thing sucks. I guess a LOT of it has to do with being a week or so before Christmas, right? Well..its just ashamed...because the last couple of events I have played down IP and then now here at Harrah's, the tournaments have been GREAT! Killer structures, good dealers, good floor people. It just sucks to not have the people turn out.

I spent all day today watching football and spending time with my dogs, and then Squirrel. She shot over to Mobile this afternoon to wrap up most of her Christmas shopping. One thing that is great about her....we have a pretty good system now...I give her money, she writes my name on whatever she buys. I used to hate Christmas for the reason that I just hated trying to make everyone happy by buying just the right thing, and having to fight the crowds. Now I have her for that. Yay! I went and met her at Saki for sushi. It was good. Service was decent. Then we came home. Out of 5 fantasy teams, 3 of them made the playoffs. In the first league...I won my opening round game. In the other...I won also. Sweet. And in the last one...the Beau Rivage league...where my team name is SPITE MONKEYS...for obvious has worked out perfect. Squirrel has a team in there also...we both got hot at the end of the season...and she got in on the last week. Our first round games today had us in opposite brackets! Nice! Why? Its winner take all. We BOTH won our opening round game! So if we both win next week...we play for the championship. We will call that a WIN/WIN! Not sure if she is going to take it seriously or not...wanting to beat me. I suppose she will. But I have to admit...all season long I've been wanting to win that Beau Rivage league.

Meanwhile, in the Venetian's $100 Survivor Pool, run by some of their dealers and floor guys...23 started...and after one guy lost with Pittsburgh...that one is down to just ME and another guy, a dealer. Wouldn't THAT be nice!?? Nothing like winning money in pools and fantasy leagues.

Its getting late. I really wanted to snap off a quickie blog to you guys before heading back in the morning for the $340 tomorrow...but as always, this got a little longer than expected. Oh well. Hopefully tomorrow night I will have some good news for y'all. I really, really want to win, or at least get a top 3 this week. Oh by the way...a pretty good buddy of mine, and a guy I  know a lot of you know is going through some tough times...Gabe Costner...put together a nice run, making the final table of Friday's $340...and taking 3rd. That makes me very happy for Gabe. He really needed something good to happen for him.

Okay, good night. Talk to ya soon!


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I played at your 6-handed table last week, so I decided to check out your blog. Very entertaining. Congrats on your cashes thus far, and good luck with the rest of the tournament.

I hope my (obviously) amateurish play wasn't to hard to stomach. Thanks for the polite 'FYI.'

The Quite Guy at Seat Two