The Big Play

Ace of Spades $10K Guarantee Satellite (1,000 chips)

I’d already bought in for the game but DV hadn’t arrived yet and I decided to play for his seat since they were trying to round up a couple of players for the last satellite. I didn’t keep track of the cards, but I took a chunk of the stack from the woman opposite me early on, then another couple of medium-sized chunks from around the table before. As the match dragged on past the big game’s starting time, the staff was anxious to get the tournament under way and they jumped the blinds up, which led to the quick elimination of several players, with most of the chips going to two guys at the other end of the table. Eventually, they got into a hand and I was heads-up with a significant chip disadvantage. We got moved to another table since the one we were at was needed for the $10K. I managed to get even or a little bit ahead in heads-up by some good cards and some bluffing, then the tournament was starting and since both the other player and I were already bought-in we just chopped the prize money. DV had to pay his own way in to the big game.

6 players, tied for first. +200% ROI.

Ace of Spades $10K Guarantee (7,000 chips)

Right off the bat there was an announced “dealer appreciation fee” of 10% of the buy-in, which  got you an additional 2K in chips. It’s pretty hard to ignore a nearly 30% increase in the stack size for that price, but I felt it was a bit sleazy to not make it known up-front. I hope it’s not something that spreads to other venues.

I sat in seat 1 of table 2 the entire game.

I caught axax on my third hand and steadily increased my opening bets against seat 4 in SB. Checked on the river and SB bet 1K. I raised to 2K (we were still at 25/50 for blinds) and he called but the aces held and I was up to about 13K.

Pressing hard with ackc won another several hundred shortly thereafter.

Had kx5x on the BB and caught top pair on the flop. The board straightened out with kx8x7x6x by the turn, and I hung on. 5x hit the river and I ended up takig down the pot from what was probably a stronger king.

Player 7c9c and hit second pair on a flop with an ax. I made a good-sized raise and everyone went away.

Lost about 1K after raising with ad7d, but I was up to 17K at the 90-minute mark.

Playing qxqx with an ax on the flop cost me about 3K. I made up for it playing qxtx in a hand with five players in for 800 pre-flop. The first cards were kxjx8x and I bet out 1,500, which got folds from everyone.

Lost a big hand with ackx when my straight and flush draws didn’t make it and a full house did.

At two hours into the game I was down a bit, to 15,650, but made it to 22K by the second break.

I’d played 7x7x and stayed in with a board of 3xax6x3x. When 7x hit the river, a short stack in seat 8 went all-in and I called him, with my full house being best hand.

DV wasn’t doing so well, down to about 10bb. After this, no players were allowed to rebuy, I did the add-on for 50% of the buy-in and 7K in chips (not nearly as good a deal as the “dealer appreciation”).

Open-raised to 1,500 with axqx and took the blinds on one hand, then lost 3,500 calling an open-raise by seat 4 (who had speedily recovered from our initial meeting) with kxjx when the flop went nowhere. kxjx lost me another K shortly thereafter, and perhaps I should have noticed a pattern here.

Blinds were up to 300/600, I raised to 1,500 with axjc and got three calls. Everyone checked to the river and nobody got anything. Nobody else even had an ace.

ax7x again cost me 1,500 after I opened and nothing hit on the flop.

My last hand was kxjx. A new player had been moved into seat 2 and taken out two from our table in a short span. I raised after getting top pair with a kx on the flop, he went all-in, I called and he showed axkx, which held through the river.

DV actually laster a while longer than I did, but was still out well before the money.

4 hours. Placed around 50th in a field of 79. -100% ROI (-180% buy-in including door, dealer appreciation, and add-on).

Aces Players Club 1 Re-Buy (7,000 chips)

Took in 800 early on pairing my nine with 9xtx on the flop. Ditto with axjx and jacks. Forty minutes in I was up to about 9,300.

4x5x in the BB raised and checked down to the river won me 1K when my paired 4x was the best hand. By the first break I had crept up to 10,400.

A lucky pull with 8ctc on BB made me over 5K when I hit a pair of tens with a straight draw on the board as well. that severely hurt the player three seats to my right, but he came back with an all-in against my raise with 8x8x. I called, he showed axjx, another 8x came on the turn, and he never paired but the rest of the board made him a jack-high straight and he took back several thousand.

Only about 10,800 at the 160-minute mark.

I played kxqx strong but two seats to my left the big stack at the table went all-in after the flop jxtx8x and I didn’t pull the trigger, losing over 6K. Busted out on the next hand when I called an all-in from the guy who’d busted my eights, and he showed axqx against my axjx. Both of us paired our non-ace cards, but that wasn’t good for me.

2.25 hours. Placed 16th or 17th in a field of 23. -100% ROI (-120% buy-in including door).