Folding for Fun and Profit

Long-time Mutant Poker reader BP and I had this IM exchange after Day 7 of 2013 WSOP Main Event:

BP: How about Anton Morgenstern? He could have blinded off yesterday and had an average stack in November.

Mutant Poker: Could he? There were a lot of hands between the time he was leader and the final. Maybe I’ll sit down and figure it out unless you saw the numbers crunched somewhere.

BP: I just made that up. Gut feeling that he would not be busted out by having his 20M+ stack blinded off.

Anton Morgenstern entered the day with a sizable chip lead over his opponents. With 27 players remaining, the German had just under 22 million chips, and his nearest competitor, Sylvain Loosli, had less than two-thirds that amount. Morgenstern had over one-ninth the chips in play.

For the purposes of this exercise, we’ll track multiple versions of Morgenstern’s stack:

  • Morgenstern actual is what really happened, we won’t be tracking this long;
  • Morgenstern rock assumes he does not play a hand from the beginning of Day 7 until the final table (assuming he gets there);
  • Morgenstern maximum assumes he halts play at the point he knocks out Steven Gee and nears 30 million chips (over 16% of the chips in play).
  • Morgenstern brakes assumes Anton shuts down at the end of Level 30 after he’s lost chips from his peak.

The first level of Day 7 went well for Morgenstern. He was seated at the feature table, which played 46 hands at Level 30 (60K/120K/15K). By the end of the level, he’d increased his stack to 26.455 million, and at one point just four hands before the end of the level, he’d reached a peak of 29.325 million after eliminating Steven Gee.The first elimination at the feature table came on the fifth hand, Morgenstern’s BB. Cost so far: 195K. Gee was the next elimination, on hand 44. Forty hands of antes: 585K. Five SB: 300K. Five BB: 600K. Total cost so far: 1.68 million. This is the starting point for Morgenstern maximum.
Over the last four hands of the level, Morgenstern paid a SB and four antes, for a total of 120K. He also lost another 2.75 million, most in the last hand of the level against JC Tran. The 26.455 million he ended the level with is the starting point for Morgentern brakes.The cost of blinds and antes for the entire level was 1.8 million. Morgenstern rock would not have played a hand during the level and would have ended with 20.155 million. Morgenstern actual and Morgenstern brakes would be at 26.455 million. Morgenstern maximum, sitting out the hands after Gee’s KO, would have 29.205 million.

End of Level 30 (23 players remaining)

  • Morgenstern actual: 26.455 million
  • Morgenstern rock: 20.155 million
  • Morgenstern brakes26.455 million
  • Morgenstern maximum: 29.205 million

The feature table was seven-handed throughout Level 31 (80K/160K/20K). 46 hands were played during the level. Because of the placement of the button at the beginning of the level, Morgenstern paid seven pairs of blinds. Cost for the level was 2.6 million. But this is where it all went wrong for Anton Morgenstern, as he twice doubled up Mark Newhouse.

End of Level 31 (21 players remaining)

  • Morgenstern actual: 5 million
  • Morgenstern rock: 17.555 million
  • Morgenstern brakes: 23.866 million
  • Morgenstern maximum: 26.605 million

The next level (32) saw Morgenstern’s elimination as well as the redraw to two tables. Blinds were 100K/200K/30K. 58 hands were played at the feature table before the redraw. Even with his short stack, Morgenstern stayed in the game through most of the level, so action wasn’t moving particularly faster because he wasn’t there. The object in this type of calculation is to plan for the worst, anyway, so the more hands and the higher cost, the more accurate an estimate you’re likely to get: eight rounds of blinds and 56 antes (4.08M total).

End of Level 32 (18 players remaining)

  • Morgenstern actual: 0 (out in 20th place)
  • Morgenstern rock: 13.475 million
  • Morgenstern brakes: 19.786 million
  • Morgenstern maximum: 22.525 million

About 50 hands at 120K/240K/40K for Level 33, about 30 of which were nine-handed. About 4.1 million is the cost.

End of Level 33 (15 players remaining)

  • Morgenstern actual: 0 (out in 20th place)
  • Morgenstern rock: 9.375 million
  • Morgenstern brakes: 15.686 million
  • Morgenstern maximum: 18.425 million

Level 34 was 150K/300K/50K. 53 hands played, with almost all of them 6-handed because of two early eliminations at the feature table. A cost of around 6.625 million.

End of Level 34 (11 players remaining)

  • Morgenstern actual: 0 (out in 20th place)
  • Morgenstern rock: 2.75 million
  • Morgenstern brakes: 9.061 million
  • Morgenstern maximum: 11.8 million

The last level played was Level 35 (200K/400K/50K). Just seven hands were played at the feature table before an elimination set the unofficial final table, which would have cost 850K. One round of 10-handed play led to the final elimination, at a cost of 1.1 million, a total of about 2 million chips.

End of Day 7 (9 players remaining)

  • Morgenstern actual: 0 (out in 20th place)
  • Morgenstern rock: 0.75 million
  • Morgenstern brakes: 7.061 million
  • Morgenstern maximum: 9.8 million

BP wasn’t entirely correct. Blinding off for the entire day (Morgenstern rock) would have left Anton with barely enough for his next round of blinds, much less antes. Putting the brakes on after the first level of the day (Morgenstern brake) would most likely have left him as one of a couple of short stacks: the actual November Nine short stacks are David Benefield with 6.375M and Mark Newhouse (7.35M), the man who damaged Morgenstern to climb to the chip lead, only to end up within striking distance of where he began the day (5.785M), but with 18BB instead of 50BB.

Still, the difference between 20th place and 9th place in monetary terms  is $285,408 vs. $733,224, or over $450,000. Not a bad payday for doing exactly nothing and still with a chance to win the top prize of $8.36 million. It might have been an incredible story.

Something to keep in mind the next time you have 30 million chips at the final three tables of the WSOP Main Event.

My Big, Fat Chip Blowoff

Carbon Poker $1.5K Guarantee Deepstack (T5,000)

Sometimes you can’t win. Sometimes you can’t lose, even when you’re trying very very hard. I started playing this Deepstack at 9:30am, not realizing that it ran for eight hours or more and I had to be at work in six. Then I ran insanely great. Of course.

Hand 16 [8h 9h] UTG3 20/40
I won the blinds in first couple hands with raises, then lost a little bit over the next dozen or so, so I start the hand with 4,660. Three folds ahead of me, I open to 100 and get re-raised by BB to 320. I call and we see the flop HU: [3s kd 7d]. BB bets 495 and I fold.

Hand 24 [kh td] CO 30/60
I’ve paid a couple of blinds since losing Hand 16, and I’ve been moved to a new table. HJ limps in and I call. BTN raises to 220, getting a call from BB. HJ folds and I call to hit top pair on [2c tc 9h]. 750 in the pot; BB checks, I bet 500, BTN folds and BB raises me to 1,000. I call. The turn is [3h]. I have 3,060, BB has me covered by about 700, and there’s 2,750 in the pot. He puts out a bet of 1,375 and I shove all-in with my one pair. He calls with the [qc 6c] flush draw and the river [8h] wins me a pot of nearly 9,000.

Hand 31 [5c 5d] CO 30/60
We’re playing with only seven at the table, so I’m back in the same spot I was in the last major hand. The player I nearly wiped out recovered almost immediately with [ax kx], although he’s a long way from healthy, and he’s BB again. HJ open-raises to 120, I call, BTN three-bets to 400, and I’m the only caller. The flop is [6s 8s 3h] and I check-call a bet of 650. With [tc] on the turn, though, I fold to a 1,200 bet from BTN, and I’m down to 7,730.

Hand 32 [as 8c] HJ 30/60
I shouldn’t even be playing this hand, but action folds to me and I raise to 150. BTN calls, the flop is [7h 5h 2s] and I bet 250, only to get raised to 917. I fold.

Hand 38 [7d ad] UTG 30/60
I raise to 135, get a call from BTN, see a [9h ah kc] flop. bet 200, and win.

Hand 62 [td 8d] UTG1 60/120
No significant wins or losses for another couple dozen hands. My stack has lost a little wind, I’m down to 6,865. THere are three other stacks at the table (eight-handed) with more than me, and one right behind me. I limp in and it’s three-way to the flop with me and the blinds. The flop is [kd 5d ts]. Both blinds check and I make a half-pot bet of 200, which gets called by both of them. [8h] on the turn gives me two pair, with flush and full-house draws, so when it gets checked to me again, I bet 620 into the pot of 960. SB comes along, and I make the flush with a [9d] river. SB checks again, I bet 900, and he calls with [ks qc]. The win puts me back up over 9,000 again.

Hand 63 [jh jd] UTG 60/120
I raise to 400, getting calls from UTG2, CO, and BTN, all of whom I have covered. The flop is [4h 7s 9h]. I bet 800, CO calls, and BTN puts in almost 3,600, leaving 740 behind. I re-raise all-in, CO folds, and BTN calls with his set: [9d 9s]. The [3h] turn keeps a flush draw possibility alive, but I catch a better set instead with [js] on the river, and I’m over 15,000.

Hand 71 [qc tc] UTG 60/120
I raise to 300, get called by BTN, and the flop is [4h 5s 7c]. U c-bet 425, get called, see [3h] on the turn and check-fold to a bet of 720.

Hand 72 [7c 3h] BB 60/120
UTG2, CO and SB limp into my pot. I hit bottom pair on the [6s 3c 9c] flop. CO opens with a bet of 240 post-flop and everyone calls. The turn is a scary [ac], I bet this time for 400 and only UTG2 calls. The river is [jh], we both check, and my pair of threes wins a pot of 2,240.

Hand 73 [4c 5c] SB 60/120
UTG1 limps in, followed by UTG2, CO, and both of us in the blinds. The flop gives me a flush draw and a gut-shot straight draw: [kc 8c 7s]. Action checked to UTG2, who bet 450. I called, along with UTG1. The flush came for me with [9c] on the turn. I overbet the pot, putting in 2,710, which was the remaining number of chips in UTG2’s stack (and more than half the stack of UTG1), leaving nearly 13,000 behind. UTG1 folded and UTG2 called with two pair: [8h 7h]. [qc] on the river. That pushed me over 20,000.

Hand 75 [ac 6c] CO 60/120
UTG2 min-raised to 240 and HJ three-bet to 720. I called, BB came along, and UTG2 matched it. By this point, I was chip leader at the table with more than twice what anyone else had. The flop was [jd 7c 3h], HJ opened with a bet of 2,205 and I folded. The hand ended with BB making two pair on [7s 9h]to beat [qh qs] for a pot of 12,000.

Hand 80 [5d tc] BB 80/160
BTN opened to 365, SB called, and I followed along. The flop was [3d qc 6c] and it got checked around. The turn was [2c], SB checked, I bet 550, and BTN called. Missed my flush on the [kd] river, which was just as well; we both checked it and my BTN won with [ac 7s].

Hand 84 [3d 2d] HJ 80/160
WHat can I say? I’m a sucker for this hand and it costs me. UTG4 was all-in for 50. I raised to 400 and BB called. I have 18,000 behind vs 5,600. The flop is [6c ad 3h] and I make bottom pair. BB bets 1,280 and I call. There’s pots of 200 and 3,290 and [ts] comes on the turn. BB goes all-in for 4,325 and I fold my threes, only to see BB with [qs 8s] and UTG4 with [jc 8c]. [5c] on the river and I would have won it. Grrr. Down to 16,740.

Hand 85 [th ad] UTG2 80/160
We’re seven-handed again. Smarting from my laydown in the last hand, I open-raise to 400, getting a call from CO. The flop is [9d 4h 2d]. I bet 600 and get called again. [jh] on the turn and we both check. I pair my kicker with [ts] on the river and bet 1,000, getting a call from [ah qh] and seeing how lucky I was on that last card.

Hand 89 [jc jh] BB 80/160
Starting with 19,500, seven at the table, only one other player with anything close to my stack. The other large stack limps in UTG1. CO raises to 440, I three-bet to 1,000 and get a call from UTG1. CO folds. The flop is [qc 6c 5h] and I bet 1,200. UTG1 raises all-in and I fold.

Hand 96 [2s 2h] BB 100/200
I’m about 2,500 off the chip lead with 17,000 after my blind’s paid. The chip leader in UTG2 limps in along with UTG3 and CO. I flop the set on [8h 7s 2c] and action checks to CO who bets 400. I raise to 1,300 and get called by CO. [qs] on the turn gets checked by both of us. The [ts] river is a little disquieting, but I bet 2,720 (everything CO has left) into the 3,500 pot and win the hand.

Hand 115 [ah qc] SB 100/200
Still around 19,000. My nemesis has caught wind and has 10,000 more, but the other five players at the table combined don’t have as much as we do. Nobody under 10BB, however.  UTG2 limps and I raise to 500. He calls and we’re HU to the flop. I’m not happy about the [7d 4d 8d] but I c-bet 650 and get a call. [td] on the turn and I’m ready to give it up. I bet 1,000, he calls, there’s an [8s] on the river, I check, he bets 3,000 and I’m out.

Hand 117 [ad qh] CO 125/250/25
Again with the ace-queen. I open to 600 and the bigger stack (although he’s lost several thousand in the past couple hands) calls from BB. This time the flop is a suit I have, at least: [7h kh 5h]. He checks, I bet 850, and he folds, so I win a small pot for a change.

Hand 123 [9d 8s] BB 125/250/25
Limps from UTG, UTG1, and SB. Part of the flop hits me: [qc 9c 4h]. SB bets the pot (and goes all-in) for 1,200 and I call to see where it might go; UTG1 is out. SB has [jh qh], I fail to improve, and he wins the pot. Back down to 16,000.

Hand 126 [jc ad] CO 125/250/25
I open to 600 and SB calls. The flop is [5d kc 2c] and we both cautiously check. [ks] makes a pair on board and SB makes a stab at it with a bet of 750. I call. Trips on the board with [kh] for the river and SB tries to rep at least a full house with a bet of a big chunk of his stack: 2,100 with 5,700 behind. I call and beat his [jd qc].

Hand 128 [ad 8d] UTG3 125/250/25
UTG2 limps (with 10BB behind) and I raise to 650. CO calls along with UTG2. [3c 3s qd] on the flop. Action checks to CO (I know, I should have bet) and he puts out 500. I call. [4c] on the turn and I make a very small bet of 250 for some reason. UTG2 (who I beat on the last hand) puts in half his remaining stack and I fold.

Hand 130 [ac 7c] UTG 125/250/25
I bet 650 and CO goes all-in for 6,250. I call with 12,400 behind and he has [ah kc]. I get two clubs on the flop but no more.

Hand 131 [th 8d] BB 125/250/25
Action folds to SB who goes all-in for 1,750. I’ve got almost exactly pot odds if he’s got a weak ace, and I call. He flips [4c ah] and catches an un-needed [4h] on the river.

Hand 148 [jc kh] UTG 150/300/30
Down to 10,300. I open to 750 and it gets through everyone except BB, who calls. The flop is [2c 7h 6c]. We both check. The board pairs with [7d] on the turn, BB bets 900 and I call.   [ah] on the river has us both checking and I take the pot against [tc kc]. Fortunately, both the cards that would have made a flush and helped me out were already in our hands.

Hand 156 [as ah] UTG 200/400/40
After having my aces cracked at the Venetian the other day by [9x 4x], I had no inclination to slow-play these. I raised to 825 and got calls from UTG2 (with about 400 more chips than I had) and BB (with about half my stack). The flop was [th js 5d] which was a little concerning because of the jack-ten. BB and I checked, UTG made a “take it down” bet of 2,250 into the 3,000 pot, BB folded, and I jammed for my remaining 11,750. UTG2 called, drawing pretty thin with [jc ac]. The win put me over 26,000.

Hand 167 [ad 7s] HJ 200/400/40
I open for 900 (24,000 behind) and get a call from BB (14,500). The flop is [5c 3c js] and we both check it. [8d] on the turn and we’re checking again. I call his bet of 2,360 on the [2d] river and he shows [kc ks].

Hand 169 [qh ac] UTG2 200/400/40
I open to 950, get called by UTG3 (who’s one of the two stacks covering me at the table), then CO shoves for 11,185. I re-shove after action folds to me and UTG3 gets out of the way. CO has [qs 5s], the board runs out [6h 6c td tc jc] and I’m up to 34,750.

Hand 174 [as 9s] BTN 250/500/50
I’m once again the table leader, and am actually at the top of or near the top of the leaderboard for the tournament. UTG1 opens to 1,195 (22,500 behind), I call (35,500), and BB comes along (20,300). The flop is [3h 6s ah]. A check from BB, bet of 2,400 from UTG1, and I call, with BB bowing out. [jc] on the turn and UTG1 is in for another 5,100. I call again and the pot is over 19,000. The river is [8s]. All I have is the aces, but I call the all-in bet of 15,000 and catch the bluff with [jh 9h] to profit nearly 25,500. His comment after getting knocked out is: “ew dont bluff that guy.”

Hand 175 [tc jh] CO 250/500/50
Starting the hand as overwhelming chip leader with more than 62,000. I open to 1,100 and BTN re-raises to 2,000 (20,250 behind). We’re heads-up to a [5c 7c 8h] flop. I check and he half-pots 2,600. I call and [8c] hits the turn. I check-call his 6,400 bet. A [9c] completes both my straight and my flush. I put him all-in to call (11,250, about half the pot) and he folds. Over 74,000.

Hand 190 [tc ah] CO 250/500/50
One player at my table has a third as many chips as I have, there are three empty seats. Action folds to me and I raise to 1,600. BTN goes all-in with 9,115, I call against his [ac js] and lose.

Hand 197 [tc jc] CO 250/500/50
Starting with 62,500. UTG (26,000 behind) limp-calls after I raise to 1,250. The flop is [kd 6d td] and we both check. [qh] on the turn fives me up and down straight draws in addition to my third pair and I win with a bet of 1,350 after it’s checked to me.

Hand 209 [9h 7h] UTG2 300/600/60
I opened to 1,400 and was re-raised to 3,100 by UTG3. We were HU to a [2h 4c ah] flop and I went all-in over his remaining 18,430. He folded.

Hand 223 [6d ad] BTN 400/800/40
CO opens to 2,400 and I call, then SB puts about a third of his stack in to 8,800. BB and CO fold, I call, and I pick up bottom pair on a [ts 9s 6c] flop. He goes all-in and I call with 42,000 behind. A [qh kh] run-out gives him an unnecessary straight.

Hand 234 [qc qd] UTG1 400/800/80
I’m at a new table for my first hand. I open to 2,500, action folds to BB who puts in about 40% of his stack: 6,970. I re-raise him all-in and he calls with [ad kd]. He gets two diamonds on the flop but I dodge the bullets and knock him out to get back up over 55,000.

Hand 238 [tc td] BTN 400/800/80
UTG1 is all-in for 1,250 and UTG2 sees an easy opportunity to pick up some chips, so he shoves for 26,400. Everyone behind him has more chips but not so many that a loss wouldn’t hurt. I reshove, though, and both the blinds drop out, so I have 27,700 no matter what happens. The small stack has one of my outs with [th jc]; the bigger stack has [ah kd]. I dodge all sorts of bullets with nothing higher than two queens showing. The small stack nearly makes a straight but I knock both of them out and I’m over 77,000.

Hand 243 [9c ad] BB 400/800/80
UTG1 limps in and the flop is [5s qc qd]. I check-call his 1,600 c-bet, we both check on the [3d] turn, and neither of us bets the river [td]. He has [ac 4c] and I take a small pot.

Hand 248 [ah 8h] UTG1 500/1,000/100
I start with 85,600. BB his within a thousand or so, the closest stack below that is 30,000 down. I min-plus raise to 2,200 and get a call from SB, with 54,000 behind. The flop looks good, [7h jh 6d], and I put out a substantial bet of 4,000, two-thirds of the pot. SB check-calls. We both check the [qc] on the turn, and I brick out on the river [4d]. SB puts out a small 2,000 and at 8:1 I have to call in the hopes that ace-high is enough. He has [9c js] for top pair on the flop and I drop below 80,000.

Hand 255 [ts tc] UTG1 500/1,000/100
Open to 3,500 in the same position as the last hand except that SB now 70,000 chips, just a few thousand less than me instead of 30,000 below. SB calls, the flop is [9c 7s 5c] and I bet two-thirds of the 8,700 pot: 6,000. SB shows [as ks] as he folds.

Hand 257 [jc 9h] BB 500/1,000/100
HJ opens to 2,000 with just 16,000 behind. I call to defend. The flop is [tc th 8s], and assuming my open-ended straight draw looks better than what I’m going to assume is a high ace, I put him all-in. He folds.

Hand 260 [jc kd] CO 500/1,000/100
HJ opens with a min-raise and I’m the only caller. We both check the [as tc jh] flop, then the [2s] turn, and finally on the [2h] river he bets the minimum of 1,000] I’ve got second pa, I call, and he shows [5s ah] for the win.

Hand 284 [kd 2s] BB 600/1,200/120
I’m second in chips at the table with 82,800. The table leader is the tournament chip leader at 98,000 and third place at our table has 72,000 on BTN. Only one of the other six players has more than 50,000. UTG1 min-raises to 2,400, SB and I call. The flop is [ks td 4d]. SB checks and I slam it home, putting them both at risk if they call (they have in the low 40s). UTG1 folds, SB calls with [qs jc] and the open-ended straight draw, but loses with a run-out of [7s tc]. The win makes me tournament leader with 130,600.

Hand 285 [ks qd] SB 600/1,200/120
UTG limps and UTG1 makes a small raise to 2,845. HJ calls the raise and I shove 130,500. Everyone folds and HJ shows [3d 3s].

Hand 286 [td 9d] BTN 600/1,200/120
HJ, with only 20,250, open-raises to 3,000. CO folds and I re-raise to 40,000, covering the SB and all but 1,400 of the BB. Everyone folds.

Hand 289 [as ad] UTG2 600/1,200/120
The hand that you hope for after anoying people with your big-stack shoves. Action folds to me, I just limp in, SB calls, and BB checks. They both have about 50,000 vs. my 140,600. The flop is certainly good for my hand: [ac 7s 9d], but when I make a min-bet they both fold. Maybe I should have shoved pre-flop again.

Hand 292 [3d 4s] BB 600/1,200/120
CO min-raises, BTN calls, and I call. CO is the larger stack, with 44,000. The flop is [6d 2h 7c]. I bet 4,000 and they both fold.

Hand 293 [8c 8s] SB 600/1,200/120
UTG raises to 2,400 with 25,600 behind. HJ calls with 42,400 back. I shove again with 153,000; SB is yet to act but has less than HJ. Everyone folds; HJ shows [ad jh] and makes a comment about shoving with 100BB. I think with the effective stack (his) it’s only 36BB.

Hand 295 [td qh] CO 600/1,299/120
My problem here was that we were still a bit away from the money and I needed to go to work. As someone pointed out later, I could have just set myself to sit out and coasted to whatever point in the money my leading chip stack would have taken me, but with some other things going on in meat-space, I thought about that and promptly forgot it, and instead set about trying to knock as many people out before blowing off my stack—which wasn’t as easy to bring myself to do as I thought it would be. I did manage to make a start here. I open-raised to 5,000, was raised to 17,760 by BTN, and called. I checked the [4h 2s 7s] flop and folded to an all-in bet of 48,325.

Hand 311 [ts ac] HJ 750/1,500/150
By this point in the contest, I was back up to 153,450. We had six players at the table: CO and SB had over 80,000, BB and UTG had in the low 60s, and BTN had 44,000. I did my ace-shove, the BTN short stack called, and I was HU v [kd ks]. It looked like I might slip down close to 100,000 on the [3s 7c 7d] flop, but [ah] on the turn and [3d] on the river just pushed me over 200,000.

Hand 328 [td 8d] HJ 750/1,500/150
Despite a couple of losses, I was still up over where I was when I beat the kings, but time was running short. I opened to 6,000, called an all-in from BTN of 30,350, and lost to [js ad].

Hand 343 [2h as] SB 750/1,500/150
It takes some serious boneheaded play to get rid of chips when people are scared of your stack. With 185,000 chips, I had more than twice all but one other player at the table, and I had half again his stack. I went all-in and BB (92,500 chips) had the nerves to call. And [ks kh]. His pair held and we swapped stack sizes.

Hand 344 [6d 4d] BTN 750/1,500/150
This time, I called an all-in from BB after limping and found myself up against [ad tc]. I paired the four on the flop, which must have made him nervous until the ace on the turn, and successfully managed to slide down to 35,000.

Hand 346 [9h 9d] HJ 750/1,500/150
Best-laid plans, you know? I’m all-in again and get called by the guy I just doubled up from BTN. He has [6h 6d], the board runs out [5h 5c 5s 3s 8s] and my full house is better.

Hand 348 [th jd] UTG1 750/1,500/150
Just eight minutes before I have to leave for work: gotta shave and put on the uniform. All in! [ah ks] calls from UTG3 and has me covered by about 9,000. I catch top pair on the [jh 7h 3h] flop, but the [4h] turn manages to accomplish the mission before I double-pair with a [tc] river. Narrow escape! I almost had 150,000 chips again.

VPIP for this tournament: 27.8%. Higher than usual because when I had the lead (and when I was blowing off chips) I was getting involved a lot. I had aces and queens twice and jacks three times. No kings.

Five hours and twenty minutes. 348 hands. 18th of 247 entries. +173% ROI (first place paid +5,381.8% and yes, I am regretting forgetting about the “sit out” option).

Ghosts In the Cash Machine

It’s been a busy few weeks since my last post. I’ve made two trips to Las Vegas, played in a number of events at the Venetian Deepstacks (where my big blind [ax ax] fell into a trap set by a player raising with [9x 2x] preflop), made a stupid mistake in the Turbo event at the WSOP that put me out before the first break, and where I had my first (small) cash outside of Oregon, at Caesars Palace. Between that and work, you’d think it would be enough, but actually, I’ve had another project that ties into a number of my other posts.

Some of my statistical work was based on the databases at (an unofficial database of WSOP entries from 2011 and 2012) and the QuadJacks WSOP Database, which correlated entries and wins, this showing which players had a profitable series (and which did not). For various reasons, the QuadJacks database is gone, replaced by their somewhat less-informative Tracker this year, but more importantly, the WSOP is no longer releasing entry lists for events, which makes any type of ongoing ROI or profitability analysis impossible.

I talked to the folks at QuadJacks last year in an attempt to get access to the raw database for my own analysis purposes, and had a nice conversation with Marco Valerio just before the WSOP began this year, but so far nothing’s come of it. My backup plan, however, was to build my own database, and in-between everything else going on, I’ve completed the first phase of it, integrating the entries and awards from the 2011 season. I have the data processed from 2012, but there’s some more work to be done there.

I’m going to be writing up some in-depth articles in the near future, but as a teaser, here’s a follow-up to something I noticed when I was working on my piece about Oregon players at the 2012 WSOP and differences in hometowns stated on entry forms and award forms.

There were at least five players in the 2011 season who either registered under a completely different name from which they claimed their win or who were missed from the entry forms. With just five players out of more than 5,500 unique award-winners, you might think it was the latter, but one of those names is Collin Moshman, who cashed three times (under that name, anyway) during the 2011 series but who appears on exactly 0 entry lists for the year. There were about 30 players with the first name of Colin or Collin or a last name beginning with Mosh- who played in 2011, but only one of them had more than 3 entries, so my money is on a pseudonymous entry.

Then there’s Phillip Gruissem. Gruissem placed 28th in the 2011 Main Event for a cash of nearly $250K, but he’s not on any of the entry lists. German player Alexander Gruibem, on the other hand, cashed once in 2010, entered 10 events in 2011, then dropped off the face of the earth in 2012, although an Alexander Gruissem is on the entry list for last year’s $1,000,000 Big One for One Drop. Coincidentally, the German double-s (ß) looks a lot like a B.

The group is rounded out by Millard Hale, Albert Hoffman, and George Secara, who all cashed under names that aren’t on the registration list. Not that it matters to my analysis of aggregate data; I just like my databases to be clean.