11 August 2005

Post-Cash Tourney III

Played bar tourney last night with five tables/35-40 players. Played really well most of the night using my bar-game strategy early on (playing tight aggressive with larger than normal raising). Most of these bar tourneys have an unspoken coda where alot of folks limp in alot early on. $5,000 in chips started, with blinds starting at $100/200. After the first hour or so I built up to $6,500 (up and down a bit). The guy that organized this particular tourney sat at our table two to my right with blinds at $300/600, he raised to $1,500 with his first hand UTG, I looked down at 77 and moved all-in, he counted his chips out and we had an identical stack. He called with AK and didn't hit, so I doubled up there. Caught black KK then red KK the next two hands to get some monster pots. Was in great shape down to the final table when this hand came: I was UTG with KJo and called $2,000. One other guy had a very large stack and had bluffed me out of a couple of raised pots. He called small blind, and flop comes KKJ. He bets $4,000, and I smooth call with two other callers. A on turn, he bets $8,000, I raise another $15,000 guy, big stack immediately moves all-in and I call, he never showed his hand when I flipped over the KJ (he had me covered and was left with about $7,000). Another weird final table deal: alot of folks were chopping the blinds (which I've never seen in any tourney, just in cash games). Well, there was one guy to my left who would chop sometimes after studying his hand. I look down at AA, folded to me in sb, I ask him if he chops. He says no, I call, he raises, I move all-in, he calls with something (maybe KQ or something, I can't remember). Now, I am of the school of thought that you either always chop or never chop, so I didn't particularly like his play. Down to four players, one good guy across from me raised me, I re-raised a big stack with AdKd, he calls. I move all-in before the flop (I was bb), he says, "Hold it, you can't do that ), and I tell him I'm all-in. Flop was 974, he contemplates awhile, then folds.

I had a monster chip lead then pissed it away on two marginal hands when we were down to four players (I knocked out two players all-in with KK). Played TV poker with KJo and KhQh (guy across woke up with AA in bb). I was down to $12,000 with blinds at $2,000/4,000 and three other players left (two who had my chips plus one decent lady). I was able to hang in there, tread water with solid play, then double up a couple of times to get heads-up with the guy across from me. We started pretty even in chips, and I gave half of my chips away playing pretend poker with 86o (pretend poker is when you pretend you have something good but the other person has something and won't go away). I had patience problems when we were down to four and didn't play my best. Heads-up, he played well early on, raising me off of pots and calling down with not much when I had less. He had about 75% of the chips when I finally got all my chips in with AJo to his AT. J97 on flop, K on turn, Q on river ended it. All-in-all, I was pleased with most of the play, although I definitely didn't focus as well for a period with a monster stack.

These bar tourneys are a good sign of the continued strength of poker. I won $25 Derby bucks for second place, spending 4 hours there. It is a good incremental revenue generator for the bars, and I would guess there are 20,000 people playing in Atlanta weekly at these things (I think that is a fair number). They are getting more creative to generate traffic, with points systems getting you various things. I don't know anyone at these, but it seems like a decent mix of folks, most of which I wouldn't interact with during my normal day-to-day life in suburbia. Except, of course, for the smoking. I have to immediately shower and wash clothes when I come in, so my wife normally hopes that I get knocked out immediately.


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