Bubble Boy

Aces Players Club 10pm Turbo (5,000 chips)

I completed my post-Vegas trifecta of the clubs I regularly play with the trip to Aces last night. After my quick bust in the freezeout, I sat and chatted with JB (one of the dealers) and waited for the turbo.

There was a fair amount of aggression at our table, with a guy in seat 5 who said he mostly played cash games (I was in 1), a loose player in seat 9 with a tendency to go all-in at the drop of a raise, a decent player on my immediate left and a kid in seat 3 who was playing very tight but strong.

It took a while for me to find some equilibrium. I was down to just a couple thousand chips at one point. I called one of the LAG’s all-ins with [as 9s] and I was ahead of his [kx jx] with all the low cards on the board, but a deuce on the river put a straight on the board and my potential double-up turned into a chop of the blinds. I kept building but was behind the chip average a lot of the way.

Once we consolidated to the final table, I had to step on the gas to stay ahead of the turbo blinds. I thought I’d be helped by the [kd kx] I got UTG, and raised to 1,600 at 200/400 (about a quarter of my stack) getting several callers. Then the flop hit with [5d ad 5x] and I figured I was screwed. I made a continuation bet and got a single caller who I figured must have an ace. Then another diamond hit on the turn and I pushed. The pot was large, I had the nut flush draw, and we were still five players from the money. That got a fold and I showed the kings, which got a couple of groans from around the table. It chipped my stack up nicely.

The LAG guy kept up his all-in raises and there were a couple of times I was tempted to call, but I held off and slowly the field dwindled down to five. There was talk of paying the bubble but the cash player wasn’t familiar with the concept and while everyone else was for it, it never got unanimous assent.

I saw a flop with [kx 7x] from the BB. The cards were [8x 6x 5x] and after a raise from the cash guy—and everyone else folding—I was all-in with my open-ended straight draw. I had about 16,000 chips left (at one point I’d been up to 30,000) and got called. He had top pair and it held through to the river. The dealer congratulated me on my $60 win and I pointed out that I was the bubble, for which he abjectly apologized. It was sort of funny and I didn’t mind. The bubble payment would have just brought my median cash ROI down.

Two hours. -100% ROI. 5th of 18 players.