Friday, June 10, 2005

Yes that is my face at the final table you are watching on ESPN

That is, if ESPN was smart enough to be covering the premier tournament in Vegas that weekend. I found myself at the final table at the WPBT Aladdin Casino Classic. How did I get there? Good question. I think it was the beer.

When I got to the Aladdin I saw something right away that told me this was going to be a special event. I walked in and ran into a little person. Right away I looked to see if the shirt read "Bonus Code Iggy". I felt like picking the little guy up and carrying him to the poker room. I said to him "Hammer!" but he gave me a look like if I said anything else to him he would lay a size 5 in my ass. When he yelled out to a co-worker I realized it wasn't the Igmeister afterall. Then again, it could be an elaborate disguise...

My starting table was interesting to say the least. I will probably leave people out only because I don't have complete notes. Organizer CJ was in seat 1. That I know. I was in seat 9. Empty seat at 10 with chips bleeding out. Maudi was over by Poker Nerd. Reader Matt was in the middle. One of the Aprils was on my right. And Mrs. Human Head was on the other side of the table as well.

I started the game the only way I knew. By getting another beer. I play some of my best poker while drinking (where have I seen that term before?). So when the poker room manager asked if we needed anything else, I asked for another beer. Reader Matt immediately asked for a BLT. The PR Mgr said he would take care of it and it was on. No, not the game, but the BLT action. Me and Reader Matt had comments going back and forth about his BLT. I mentioned I had to keep an eye on him in case he tried to raise with just a tomato slice. When his chip count got low and he pushed, it was noted that is was an infamous BLT bet. What out for the trap. Even at a break he went and asked the manager if his BLT was coming or not. It set the tone for a fun table, at least between us. Other than the BLT action (which for the record, he never did get even though he went to the cafe and wanted to buy one which for some reason they wouldn't make because it wasn't on the menu. Guess it confused them) there wasn't much else going on of note.

Poker Nerd was the first one to go out, earning himself the dreaded Gigli prize. That was my biggest concern about the tournament- not to go out first and be called Gigli until the next tournament. But he did go out in style trying to lay down the hammer. Sometimes the planets align against you and the hammer doesn't hold up. Sad time when it happens to you.

But the tournament went on and people started to fall out a bit more after Gigli was determined. Me? I just played good hands, laid down a hammer myself, but played tight until the first break. I was up at the time by a bit to 1400. But when we came back from the break, the blinds were either 100/200 or 200/400, I am not quite sure. It didn't matter much because it made the tournament a crapshoot. There would be pushes all over the place. I was one of them. Got 7 7 and pushed on a raise. I was happy when he folded. A hand or two later I pulled the same move on the same player (I apologize for not knowing who he is) with A 6. I was quite happy to see him fold again. What it did was chip me up nicely where I didn't have to push anymore. One of the more interesting thing was when Whiskeytown showed up to play in seat 10. He played one hand, A Q, and was done. He did have a cool shirt though. It read "Creed Sucks". Well said. When he pushed in, I started to sing "Arms Wide Open" to have some fun with it. Thankfully, I do not like Creed either and could only think of one song.

I would soon be moved to a new table with Easycure, Spaceman, Bill Rini, Felicia, the Rooster and Bob Respert. Having some chips made it a bit easier to get by. I was able to lay down the Jackhammer ( J 4 off). I collected a bounty on Easycure when I called from the big blind with 9 5 suited. It was a small amount to call and a chance to eliminate someone. Thus I felt I had to make the call. I believe Easycure had A K or at least an A. But a lucky 5 on the river would bring the pot my way. Luck smiled on me. I collected some nice collector chips off of EC for his bounty, a bounty that would bring me luck on Monday (see Easycure, there is a reason to give you some credit).

But I would give too many chips back on one bad play. With 3 3 in early position, I raised it up. Spaceman re-raised all in. The rest folded. I looked at him and felt I truly had the best hand. Not by much but the best hand. I called 2100 more to see his K Q. The K high flop was all he needed. Soon I would try to lay the Hammer down but Bill Rini had a real hand it held up. I would soon be moved once again to a new table. There I got some chips back when the Hiltons took out A J.

Before I knew it we were on break again as we headed to the final table, 9 handed. I was surprised that I made it this far. I felt I had played some good poker but the last couple hands were brutal and knocked me down from a good position. At the final table we redrew for the button. Unfortunately I would post the blinds right away. Then I would go card dead. Not a playable hand would come my way. I went out when the blind called my big blind (I was all in by posting) and Q 7 was beat by J 6. Out in 7th but won $202 and got a nice Full Tilt hat and shirt. Sweet.

Overall I was happy with my play. Didn't like going out like I did. Problem with getting crap in the end is that you can use position to steal but I never even had that opportunity. Congrats again to Bill on his victory and CJ for second place.

Next to come...A crappy session at the Mirage with the yips
Tournament Monday
and fishing at the Imperial- what a waste of time.


Easycure said...

Luck with the old chips? Hah, and I thought I had brought a lame bounty.......can't wait to here what happened next!

Matt Stephans said...

Fucking Aladdin Cafe.