Six Weeks, $110K in Guarantees

Between May 2011 and May 2012, I played 48 tournaments at the Final Table Poker Club in east Portland. I cashed in exactly one of them, as the first player busted from the final table of their 2011 $5K Christmas tournament, winning a small prize and a bounty for knocking out one of the staff. I was winning tournaments elsewhere, so I tried not to let the bad run get to me. (My next cash there, I breezed late into a PLO8 game while I was waiting for a Bluetooth stereo system to be installed in my car just before I drove down to Las Vegas, took first place, and won enough to pay for the stereo.) Since then I have about an 18% ITM there.

It’s not a fancy place, but it’s settled into position as one of the two big card rooms in Portland, and they have a monthly $20K guarantee that’s the largest regular event in the area. At $100 for the buy-in, with a rebuy available and a $50 add-on, they’ve gotten an average of about 170 entrants this year with pots over $28K. It runs on the first Friday of the month, and if there’s a fifth Friday, they run another, so three or four times a year there are two $20Ks running here consecutive weeks.

Well, this week is the fifth Friday of August, which means there’s going to be two $20Ks in a row. But that’s not all! On Saturday, September 20th, FT’s having a $50K guarantee ($150 buy-in, 1 rebuy, $75 add-on). The last one of those pulled in over 300 entries, with a prize pool of more than $75K. So, over the next six weekends, there’s:

  • August 29th: Fifth Friday $20K guarantee
  • September 5th: First Friday $20K guarantee
  • September 20th: $50K guarantee
  • October 3rd: First Friday $20K guarantee

More than $100K in guarantees at one location in P-town in (more or less, September).

Also coming up in the next few weeks, Chinook Winds is running a Fall Coast Classic, eight events (including Big O and O8), culminating in a $100K guarantee with only a $550 entry/re-entry fee. Bewilderingly, even without the influence of the Deepstacks Poker Tour folks, they have managed to schedule it at the same time as established events in the Northwest once again. The entire schedule coincides with the Muckleshoot Summer Poker Classic. And the Chinook main event is on the kickoff weekend of the Tulalip Poker Pow Wow. Washington players in Vancouver have only a half-hour extra in travel time to get to Seattle vs. Lincoln City; pros to the south might be drawn to the HPT events at Thunder Valley outside of Sacramento (where the main event runs opposite Chinook Winds’) or further south in Fresno at Club One. 200 $550 entries and re-entries to make the $100K guarantee. I’ll be there if I can make it.

I’m trying to log tournament series and special events of interest to Portland-area players. Anything within a cheap flight or a day’s drive.