The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Player

Deepstacks Poker Tour PacWest Poker Classic Event #1 Day 1B (T10,000)

@LIVEDeepstacks tweeted that there were 157 entries to Day 1A (Saturday) down at the Chinook Winds Casino in Lincoln City. I had to be in Portland Saturday night, so there was no way I could play Day 1A (Day 2 was scheduled for Monday).

The drive down through Salem was uneventful, if a little dull, and I got to Chinook Winds with about an hour to spare so I didn’t get caught up in any last-minute scramble for sign-up.

The game started off fairly well, I was in seat 7 with the button starting at 8, although my seat was between a very chatty, aggressive player on my right, and a guy he took to needling on my left, which made for some unpleasant table dynamics. Mr. Chatty was one of those guys who likes to talk about their hands, make a comment on every deal, etc. It can get a little wearing when you’re the object of their affectation, but I did my best to deal with it, even when he started trying to get his buddies’ attention from a row or two over with some kind of pathetic whistling noise.

Chatty got into it on the second hand with an older guy in seat 4. Seat 4 lost a bunch of chips on the first hand, then Chatty ended up all-in with him on hand 2 and seat 4 lost the rest, not the result I’d been hoping for, already.

Chatty started a session of large opening bets, opening or raising to as much as 600 while we were still at the 25/50 level. I still managed to pick up a few pots, then took a good chunk off him when I hit a set of fours on a flop, then boated on the turn.

My big mistake of the tournament came with axjx. Another older player had been moved to seat 4. After a jack-high flop he re-raised me to 5000. I misread what he was doing and called. In a way, I was lucky when a 9x on the turn paired the board. I thought he’d been pushing with ax9x or something of the sort and laid down my hand. He showed qxqx, and I saw the board had saved me. It did, however, cut me down to less than 7000 chips, and I never managed to get above starting stack again.

At several points during the tournament I was down to less than 6bb, once with only 1,200 chips in the 200/400/25 level. I had at least six all-ins, managing to win without showdown several times and three showdowns. jxtx did it once for me with a king-high straight against axqx, then I managed to pull out another double with jhth against ah8h by hitting the ten on the river. I finally hit the wall after the second break, during the 250/500/50 round. I had just 3,000 chips (minus my ante) as CO. There were several limps, the pot was about the size of my remaining stack. I put in my last 2,950 with ac4c and action folded to seat 5, who called. Chatty seat 6 took a little while to fold, then cards turned over and I was against 6x6x. I got an ace on the turn, but another six on the flop already had me drawing more or less dead. Managed to get through about half the field despite riding the short stack for four levels.

Long drive back home; spent about the same amount of time playing as I did in transit. I’d love to try Tuesday’s 6-max game and the limit Omaha High-Low game on Wednesday, but I’d have to see how many players they get for the mid-week games.

Overall, a good experience, though disappointing I didn’t get farther. Only downside was the lack of any preliminary info on how the days would be consolidated (not that it mattered in my case). A tweet from @LIVEDeepstacks said Day 1A would be going until 1am or 18 players, but so far as I know, nobody announced anything about 1B. From what I heard, 24 players made it from Day 1A; if another two tables made it from 1B, six or seven players would be going into Day 2 without making the cash, with only 35 players getting paid. That’s information you want to plan playing schedules. We did get a dealer in the ante level who said—after we had to make sure he was picking up antes from everyone and not pulling bets into the pot before action was complete—that it was only his fifth table of poker dealing. I’d been wondering why he was so hesitant at odd spots during the hand.

PacWest Poker Classic Event #1Combined Day 1A/1B entries: 287. Out around 65th of 131 for Day 1B (not sure how updated the ‘Players In’ figures were). 250 minutes not counting breaks.