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Monday, March 26, 2007 

Sunday's WSOP $650 on Stars

So I spent a good solid week anticipating last nights $650 WSOP satellite at pokerstars. The build up was considerable. I had a decent week in the poker trenches. I was having tremendously beneficial dialog with a great poker friend. I had peace and calm on the home front. I was ready for a great showing. However, 3 hours into the tournament, I found myself low on chips, blinds were building, it was time to make a move. I pushed with 99 and lost to 1010. Next!

Before I go into the think tank and analyze, I want to give a special thanks to Crazyman22 for the rail last night. Crazyman22 has been a great friend since we first met in Aruba for the UltimateBet WPT event back in 2002. Crazyman22 is one helluva poker player and I value and respect his feedback a great deal. Again, my thanks!

I would also like to thank everyone else who checked in last night on my progress. Having that support means the world.

Okay...now for the analysis.
I played a good tournament. I really believe I did. After I busted, Crazyman22 provided many words of wisdom, but one thought hit home. While I was still coming down off the adrenaline rush, he asks me, "what could you have done differently to still be in the tournament?". He posed this question not to take a shot, but to promote healthy review of my play. I've been working this question ever since.

Here's the deal. Blinds just went up to 75-150 with an ante. Average stack was hovering around 5000. I was sitting just under 2000 with blinds coming my way. I wasn't necessarily in a hurry at this point, but I did want to make a move during this level to get my stack near 6000. That was my goal. Out of nearly 700 entrants, we were down to around 250ish I believe. I had just moved tables several times in the last 30 minutes and was adjusting as well as I could. At this point though, I had several smaller stacks on this table and I felt really good about the 99 with position. One limper. I pushed, he calls. Turns over the 10 10. No help. So, the simple answer to the original question...had I not played this hand, I would have still been in the tournament. I do not regret this play though. So...deeper I shall go.

While it is not an excuse, I firmly believe I would have been in better position had I not moved from my first table. I had executed a great table image and was chipping away making great progress. My bets were very well respected. Only regret I had on this table was my KK out of position. I made it 600 with blinds at 50-100. One smooth caller who hits a flush on the turn with his A7. While I'm not sure his motivation at playing the A7 against my 5x bet...such as life. That hurt but I quickly rebounded. After moving tables though, I ended up on a very loose table. While my chips were dwindling and I felt the pressure to make a move, the end analysis I have laid out for myself was to wait another satellite or two before making any moves. The short stacks on this table were moving a lot of chips. While I wanted to take advantage of that, I feel I could have picked a better spot. I think there was a level of desperation among the short stacks and the potential for pushing and calling was high.

So, the lesson here? Still need a little luck. But in the end, be patient. Next hand after that 99 could have doubled me up. Next hand after that could have tripled me up.

I begin the battle again tonight. We'll get there!

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