The Poker Mutant will be retiring (mostly) from poker on 1 January. This is the latest installment in his thrilling countdown to the End of Times.
The plan for the weekend was to bink the Friday night Final Table $10K GTD NLHE,then fly to LAX for the LA Poker Open $500K GTD NLHE Main Event at Commerce Casino in the morning.
We were playing short-handed for a little bit with Bourbon Bill dealing, me in seat 6, Ron in seat 2, and Tony S. in seat 8. We’re having a pleasant enough conversation and game. Then Darren sits down and starts Darrening it up.Eventually this blows up into a hand where I raise 9♥T♥, he reraises, and we go to the flop. 9♦8♥7♥. I check, he bets, I reraise, he goes all in, I call and he has 8♦7♦ but I’m still 60% to win the hand with any heart, two nines, three tens, and three jacks and three sixes (discounting the hearts of each rank). Needless to say, the turn and river are black and a queen and king. So I’m down to 3K but still have 30+ big blinds.
I manage to chip back up, doubling once through Darren when he calls my top pair with his flush draw and misses, and picking up some other chips with a couple of shoves.
But Darren is still my downfall just 80 minutes into the game. He’s Darrened off most of what was two starting stacks and shoves from middle position on my big blind. I have jacks. The small blind calls his 3400 all in, I shove my jacks, Darren shows deuces, the small blind calls with aces, and while I get a gutshot draw on the flop (Qx9x8x) I’m just covered and don’t rebuy. Tomorrow’s the $10K at Portland Meadows.
Made myself a Chocolate Syrup Bourbon MIlkshake when I got home.
I’d been hoping that results from either the Chinook Winds or Wildhorse series would be posted on Hendon Mob before I had to do another update of the Leaderboard, but I’m running out of time and as everyone knows by now, Max Young won more than a quarter of a million dollars (and a fifth ring) this week at the WSOPC Choctaw Main Event.
As anyone who’s been around Portland poker for a few years knows, Max was a regular here not that long ago before he headed out of town for the big money. At least I can say I got sucked out on by greatness once or twice.
By the way, that was Max’s second WSOPC Ring this month (so far), he got another one in WSOPC Lake Tahoe Event #11 NLHE (with a final table and another cash at Choctaw in-between). Before that, he hadn’t won a Main Event for almost a month!
I’ve known of Jerry Mouawad for many years, from back when my wife was a theater reviewer, because he’s one of the founders of Imago Theater here in Portland, so it was kind of funny to run into him the first time at Encore Club years ago. He’s also a pretty decent poker player, and he won the Venetian Deepstack Extravaganza #12 NLHE Rebuy early this month
PokerTime fixture Jake Dahl had a string of cashes at WSOPC Lake Tahoe, with three final tables, including 4th place in Event #9 NLHE Big Blind Ante.
Back in the early days of this blog, I got it in my mind to get to EPT Prague for my 50th birthday. My thinking was that—aside from the series starting near my birthday every December—my wife is a Christmas fan, Prague is the home of Wenceslas Square and a famous holiday market, and it would be less galling to travel to a poker destination if it was someplace she actually would enjoy (Vegas is not on that list). So I spent the summer trying to get myself in the position where I could (as an umemployed freelance programmer without any work) manage to swing the kind of win I cold parlay into a European trip.
Now I’m in a sort of similar predicament. I haven’t had a four-figure profit since the summer, I hit a downswing in my Thousandaire Makers on Ignition, and the end of my poker life approaches. I gave myself an out my promise to my wife to quit poker is contingent on me not cashing for $100K before the end of the year. But I’m a working stiff, there are more holidays between now and then than I can shake a Yule log at, not to mention I gotta shake some money out for property taxes and I should probably do something special for our 30th anniversary.
So I’m looking at the events below very carefully.
This Week In Portland Poker
It’s back to normal schedules at Final Table with the $10K GTD tonight (after a couple of weeks with reduced guarantees because of events at Chinook Winds and Wildhorse). And the great $10K at Portland Meadows.
North of Sacramento, WPTDeepstacks Thunder Valleyhas the $460 buyin $250K GTD Monolith this weekend, with the $1,500 $500K GTD Main Event starting Friday and Saturday after Thanksgiving.
The LA Poker Open at Commerce Casino is closing out this weekend with a $1,100 $500K GTD Main Event (Day 1 Friday and Saturday) and a $1,100 buyin Survivor paying $5,000 to 20% of the field.
The Muckleshoot CasinoBig Bounty tournament ($200 buyin) is Sunday at 10:15am. Their monthly Deepstack ($300 buyin) is next Suunday at the same time.
The Deepstacks Poker Tour Championship is in Calgary next Thursday (it ain’t Thanksgiving in Canada) at Grey Eagle. The Canadian dollar is about 76¢ US. The opening event is a C$100K GTD for C$550 buyin. The Main Event has starting days 30 November and 1 December, with a C$2,500 buyin and C$1M GTD. You can get direct flights on Air Canada from Portland for $240 (US) RT if you buy now. It’s closer than Vegas. Plus, you’re in Calgary as winter is coming.
The Wynn Signature Seriesstarts 28 November. Opening weekend has a $250K GTD $600 buyin and a $50K GTD $550 buyin $5K payout Survivor. The next weekend has a $150K GTD ($600 buyin) and $30K GTD $3K payout $300 buyin Survivor, with a number of other events between.
The WPT Five Diamond at Bellagio starts 29 November. There’s a $1,620 NLHE 6-Max on 3 December, $1,620 PLO the next day, and lots of satellites to the $10,400 Main Event starting 11 December.
The Colorado Poker Championship Winter Series runs 29 November to 19 December at Golden Gates Casino, It features 25 events including a $2K buyin High Roller. The $1,100 buyin Main Event has three starting flights on 13–15 December. Last year’s Winter Series Main Event had a prize pool of just under $300K (Max Young took 4th, natch).
The Bicycle Casino hosts the final West Coast WSOP event of the year: WSOPC Los Angeles from 1–12 December. The first week is the $250K GTD NLHE Monster Stack, with starting flights inconveniently placed two-per-day on Monday and Tuesday. Ditto for the Main Event starting days of Sunday and Monday (11 & 12 December). FU, too, WSOP.
Closer to home, in the Sacramento area, is the Stones Gambling Hall December Chill Poker Series/Run It Up Stones. Run It Up has an abbreviated version of its Reno schedule with a $600 buyin Main Event and smaller PLO/NLH Mix, NLHE Win the Button, and PLO 6-Max ($500 buyin for the last one). That’s followed by a $100K GTD Quantum event with three buyin levels ($120, $240, and $900) and a total of 10 entry points (including the high buyin direct to day 2).
Outside of Minneapolis, the Mid-States Poker Tour Season 9 Finale is technically already running, with satellites all through November already for the $1,100 buyin $500K GTD Main Event with entry days 6–8 December. Non-stop flights are running $230 RT, and with direct flights and a 3pm start time, you wouldn’t even need to leave Portland until 7am Saturday. You’d get to Minneapolis with two-and-a-half hours to cover 22 miles from the airport to Canterbury Park.
The last event (ever) on my calendar is the Venetian Deepstacks Extravaganza V. Which starts a whole four days after the Deepstack Showdown. There’s a $100K GTD the first weekend, and a $260K GTD Monster Stack just before the New Year ($400 buyin). There’s my fallback.