A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away……I had a blog. Upon this blog, my intent was to share the home game results for Pablosplace and the games of Team7Deuce. That blog blossomed a little last year when I received some positive responses to my coverage of the WSOP. I also began including some items of my personal play for some additional content, and I would recap the play of the Twitter Poker Tour.
Then, I had a wedding, and a honeymoon, and then Traci had a hospital stay, and I made a Vegas run, and things just kept getting tossed by the wayside. All that to say that life has yet to resume to any form of normalcy until this morning, where I can once again write about life.
The week of the wedding was somewhat of a blur. There were so many little details to attend to, so many little items that needed personal attention, that I actually played very little poker. On Friday night, instead of playing poker, the guys and I left the rehearsal dinner and went to see ‘The Hangover.’ If you haven’t seen this movie yet, make plans now. It was one of the single most funny films I have ever seen. From the commercials, you would think that you’d seen it all. But in reality, it has so many unexpected plot twist, amazing lines, fantastic delivery, and a story that is completely and totally unique. All in all, it was one of the best films I’ve seen.
The morning of the wedding, Tim, Andrew, Brendan and I all headed down to the Pechanga Casino for their daily tournament, (A $20+5 buy in with a 1 time optional $3 add on). The tournament is somewhat of a donkament, and the structure is just completely insane. You start with 2500 chips, and the blinds double every 15 minutes, starting at 25/50. Within 60 minutes, the 25 chips are colored up. It’s really fast.
I would be the first of the group to go busto on the wedding day, on 300-600 blinds. I made a raise to 1800 after one limper had tossed chips in. Action folded back around to the guy who moved all in. I made the call with Ad-Qd and the tossed over K-To. He would flop a K and I’d be done as he just barely had me covered. An interesting play. I was out at about the midway point.
Andrew would follow me to the rail a few moments later. But Tim and Brendan decided to make deep runs, and both cashed in dramatic fashion. Andrew and I were sweating both of them as they were only a table apart, and Tim was growing very short stacked. From the big blind, Tim squeezed a 6-2os, and was nearly all in because of the blinds. The UTG player 3 bet, and the table folded. We encouraged Tim to play his 2 live cards, which turned out to be bad advice turned good. Tim made the call for the rest of his stack with his measly 6-2 and his opponent tossed over pocket tens. But as I said, we weren’t done, as the flop produced a deuce, and the turn another to give Tim’s set of deuces the win. We went beserk as did the casino, who I think was really pulling for Team7Deuce.
So much so, that the dealer informed Andrew and I that “your buddy is all in here, you want to come check it out?” And we headed over to see that Brendan had shoved with pocket 9’s and been called by the large stack who held pocket J’s. I made it to the table in time to quib “Oooh!! At least you still have 2 outs!!!” The dealer nearly lost his sides laughing so hard, as did the other players at the table. The flop came out with all overs, but didn’t improve either hand. The turn was a meaningless 6 giving Brendan one card. And wouldn’t you know, he hit his 2-outer on the river! The table exploded and cheered. Even the guy with J’s had to give Brendan a hand shake. The room just became electric as both our guys were getting closer to the money.
Tim would shortly after get involved in another big hand as a guy bluff raised with Jd-9d and Tim made the all in call with AQo. A third player went all in with 88 and the flop came out good for Tim as he’d flopped a Q, and took the 3-way pot. That gave him enough chips to cruise to the money. The bubble burst with Brendan very short stack, and Tim average stack. Brendan would finally leave the game in 17th, and Tim would make the Final Table, eventually going busto in 7th. It was an incredible start to an incredible day, as we made the 3 hour trek to Marina Del Rey to get me married. The party was incredible, and I was so happy about really every detail.
Traci and I left the following day for our honeymoon, a week long cruise to the Mexican Riviera. It was an unreal vacation, which included a little Parasailing in Cabo San Lucas, and much too much food throughout. A great trip from start to finish. However, when we returned, Traci had spiked a fever of 102, and had an elevated white cell count which indicated an infection of some kind, and was hospitalized. Between managing the kids and spending days at work, and nights at the hospital, blogging got tossed by the wayside. But with a week long stay and a healthy dose of antibiotics, the fever subsided, her stomach settled, and Traci came home.
This past weekend, Tim and I threw a shotgun bachelor party together for Robert, and we made a suicide run to Las Vegas. On our way, I was following the action through twitter as play had reached the money bubble at the main event. The bubble burst as we were traveling somewhere through Victorville, and we made the decision to start our party by railing at the main event at the Rio. The experience was one like no other I’d ever experience.
As we walked along the hallways, just outside of the Amazon room, I nudged Tim as we’d pass Men ‘The Master’ Nguyen. It suddenly became very real that we were at the World Series of Poker. Somehow, the giant banners didn’t kick that into gear for me. Seeing Men Nguyen meant that it was real. We walked into the Amazon room, and immediately saw that there was an all in and a call at the secondary Feature Table. Joe Hachem was had called a short stacked all in turning a straight, and his opponent tabled top pair to be eliminated. We watched this table for a little bit noticing that three seats to Joe’s right was reigning WSOP Main Event Champ Peter Eastgate, also with a good sized stack. We made our way around the room, just star struck. Mike Sexton (and sitting next to him was actor Lou Diamond Phillips), Kenny Tran, Joe Sebock, and then over to the Featured table where we saw Phil Ivey. We left that for a small bit and saw Phil Hellmuth standing up talking to a tournament official about something. It was unreal.
When we’d got there, play had about 5 minutes remaining on level 17 and the announcement came over the P.A. from Jack Effel that the players would finish that level, and be done for the day. So it turned out a good thing that we began our day there. We left with a couple minutes remaining in the level, and shortly after the announcement of the bust of Phil Hellmuth, who had moved all in on a board of J-T-X with AA, and two callers came along, on with J-T, and the other with 8-9. The 7 on the turn gave the player with the straight the large pot, and sent the Poker Brat to the rail, but having extended his personal record of the most cashes in WSOP history.
From there, we went to dinner at Stack in the Mirage. I had DM’d Lee Childs to see if he was interested in using our extra VIP pass to the VooDoo Lounge that evening, but he responded back that he was well chipped in the Deepstack event at the Venetian, and he likely wouldn’t be able to make it. So after dinner, we walked across the street to rail on Lee for a little. And when we did, we found that he wasn’t the only player there. There were about 90 or so players remaining, including WSOP Main Event Champions from 2002 Robert Varkonyi and 2006 Jamie Gold.
I went up to Lee while he wasn’t in the hand to say hello. He was amazing, and began recounting a hand he’d just been in where the his opponent check folded the flop to Lee’s aces. I gave him my card and wished him well, telling him that I hoped that given his stack, he wouldn’t be able to join us. And it turned out, that he was still alive when play stopped for the evening at around 2AM. It was a remarkable trip.
I left out a few tournaments that I’d played in, notably Seven Deuce Day, as I actually wrote a specific blog just for that one while Traci was in the hospital. It was easy to do as she was sleeping most of the time. And a few TPT tournaments, including the last one on Thursday where I again bubbled the cash in 5th place in the first Deepstack Tournament in the new Season 4 format. I really like the new format. I also left out a few homegames, and my bachelor party tournament which was an amazing time at the Pechanga with the guys. I’d last the longest of our group that day, going out in about 40th.
From here out though, it looks like things will return to some form of normalcy, and I can again begin to blog with some regularity. Thanks for baring with me through my silence, and I look forward to updating you regularly going forward. Cheers, Paul