PNW Poker Leaderboard — 13 December 2019

It’s Friday the 13th and I’m coming off a 2nd-place finish last night in a tournament, so I’m feeling like writing about some poker, even though the little bit I made at the Portland Meadows Grand Finale #10 $2K GTD NLHE Seniors isn’t close to getting me a mention here except for the fact that I write the column.

Let’s get to some real prize-winners!

The new name on the Leaderboard is Scotty McDaniel from Brent(?), OR, whose 4th-ever cash is a 4th-place finish at WSOPC Planet Hollywood #9 $100K GTD NLHE Monster Stack. He debuts on the list at #1755.

Seth Davies makes a big jump to the #2 spot on the leaderboard, edging out Kevin McPhee with 5th place in the PokerMasters #10 NLHE Main Event, a $50K buyin with 34 entries, followed by another 5th in the partypoker MILLIONS World Bahamas NLHE  Super High Roller Bowl. And by “super”, they mean, of course, a $250,000 buyin. 37 entries.

The high roller tournaments continue to be good for George Wolff, as well, with a 2nd-place finish in PokerMasters #8 NLHE ($25K buyin). He moves six spots to #18.

It’s good to be Alex Ding (Dupont, WA) this fall. He won the Muckleshoot Main Event in October for his first recorded tournament cash. In the last installment of the Leaderboard, we reported he was runner-up in the WPT Montreal High Roller (recorded cash #2). And this time he took 2nd in the WPT Five Diamond NLHE 6-Max. He’s #203 on the Leaderboard.

It’s another runner-up for David Oppenheim (Mercer Island) who got his best-ever cash in the Venetian Deepstack Extravaganza IV $200K GTD NLHE EpicStack. Oppenheim climbs 144 spots to #323.

At #11, Dylan Wilkerson holds steady with his 4th-place finish in WSOPC LA #5 $250K GTD NLHE Monster Stack.There were 815 entries.

Michael Long of Henderson, WA won the 185-entry Wynn Winter Classic $25K NLHE Seniors, his second-best score, popping him up more than 250 places to #545. In the Wynn Winter $250K GTD Classic NLHEGerald Peltolta from Renton came in 5th for his biggest cash. He is now #383. Puyallup’s David Price took 2nd in a 3-way deal at the Wynn Winter Classic $40K GTD NLHE, doubling his lifetime earnings and moving to #1281.

In more senior poker news, Woodland’s Kelly Frisbie  grabbed 3rd in the WPT Five Diamond NLHE Seniors (132 entries, $1,100 buyin). That’s Kelly’s largest cash and enough to move from #822 to #574.

Matthew Simmons from Kirkland (winner of a Planet Holywood GOLIATH Stack event in 2018) came in 3rd of 426 entries in the WSOPC Planet Hollywood $75K GTD NLHE Double Stack. His 2nd-best cash moves him to #237.

Landon Brown from Kent decided to spend some of the winter in Florida winning money at the SHRPO #2 $250K GTD NLHE, where he came in 7th after a smaller cash at the WPT event there a couple weeks earlier. Landon in #336. In one of the more bizarre coincidences I’ve run across doing this, a Landon Moore (Billings?, OR) is reported as taking 2nd place in SHRPO #18 $50K GTD NLHE Deep Stack Black Chip Bounty.That’s good to move from #1861 to #1228.

Finally, congrats to Bryce Cox of Maple Valley, WA, whose biggest-ever cash in WSOPC Planet Hollywood #3 NLHE just missed the usual cutoff for the Leaderboard roundup by $33, but I feel like someone who just won a Circuit Ring ought to get a little bump!

Anyway, tonight is the Bounty tournament at Portland Meadows, then it’s the $80K GTD tomorrow and the final game on Sunday: Big O! See you on the felt!

PNW Poker Leaderboard — 26 November 2019

While we wait for the results of the Wildhorse Fall Poker Round Up to trickle up to Hendon Mob (cross your fingers, the Summer results still aren’t up there) let’s take a look at what’s been going on for Pacific Northwest poker players the past month.

George Wolff ripped it up at this year’s Poker Masters, giving a little hope to the idea that the purple jacket might be held for two years in a row by a (former) Portland-area player. Wolff took 3rd (out of 34) in Event #7 $25K PLO, then 2nd in the next day’s Event #8 $25K NLHE. He moves up 4 spots on the Leaderboard, to #24.

Another high-ranking player making a move this edition is Max Young, going from #20 to #19 with his 3rd-place finish at WSOPC Durant #11 $1M GTD NLHE Main Event. Durant is one of the larger stops on the World Series Circuit, and there were 983 entries in this Main Event.

Alex Ding, via Playground Poker

Right on the heels of his first Hendon Mob-reported cash (the Muckleshoot Fall Classic Main Event), Alex Ding (Dupont, WA) headed to Montreal for the WPT/partypoker LIVE series, where he got 2nd in the C$5,300 buy-in Event #4 C$500K GTD NLHE High Roller. The WPT’s Tony Dunst came in 3rd, with the winner claiming anonymity. Ding’s second cash bumps him up nearly 1,000 places, to #281 on the Leaderboard.

The WSOPC stop at Lake Tahoe is considerably smaller than Durant, but it stilll got 424 entries. Charles Coultas of Mill Creek, WA took 3rd in Event #10 NLHE Main Event, adding to an already substantial record. He moves from #52 to #46.

Sam Cosby via

Samuel Cosby continues to make the most of his hall pass from the poker reporting life, winning his first ring on Halloween in Event #8 NLHE Monster Stack (appropriately). That’s his 14th recorded cash since the summer began. He jumps 51 places to #217.

Ellensberg, WA’s Jesse Kertland cashed in four out of five successive events at WSOPC Lake Tahoe (I don’t know if he was even in the one he didn’t cash), with three final tables: Event #5 NLHE 6-Max where he took 5th,  4th place in Event #7 NLHE 8-Max, and another 4th in Event #8 NLHE Monster Stack. Not enough to get him the Casino Championship (Steve Foutty had six cashes with two wins), but he does gain more than 20 places on the Leaderboard: #180.

Lee Markholt started this period as #7 and he stays at #7, despite his 8th place finish in the WSOPC Lake Tahoe main Event. Ditto for James Romero, who took 24th in a field of 1,109 at WPT/partypoker Live C$3,300 NLHE Main Event. He stays at #9.

Shadd Baudoin went from Grants Pass to the Venetian Lucky Shot Poker Series $150K TOTAL NLHE (yes, that tournament) which didn’t quite make the guarantee at 645 entries. Shadd picked up 3rd place and climbs from #869 ti #633.

Finally, Matthew Schwangler of Seattle moves almost 500 places to #1095 with a 4th place finish at WPTDeepstacks Thunder Valley #1 $100K GTD NLHE.The tournament got 282 entries and with Schwangler on the final table is another former reporting colleague, Valerie Cross.

I’m now the Ante Up magazine Pacific Northwest Ambassador. The December issue of the magazine is available for free in poker rooms around the country, or online right here.

PNW Poker Leaderboard — 27 October 2019

When last we checked in on our buddy Sam Cosby earlier this year—formerly a member of the respectable poker media and now a degenerate circuit grinder—it was to chide him for not getting his hometown updated on Hendon Mob. But it’s happened now and we at Mutant Poker are happy to welcome Cosby into the fold of the Pacific Northwest Poker Leaderboard with his 2nd place finish at the WSOPC Hammond #10 NLHE. During the summer he would have been down around #458, but he’s debuting this edition at #268.

Another PNW player at WSOPC Hammond was Wilsonville’s Eric Jarosh, who finished 14th in Event #12 $1M GTD NLHE Main Event for his biggest recorded cash. Jarosh jumps nearly 400 places on the Leaderboard, to #590.

Matt Affleck maintains his #12 with a 7th-place finish in the Wynn Fall Classic $1M GTD NLHE Championship, which brought in 1,024 entries at $1,600 apiece.

Back at the Chinook Winds Fall Coast Poker Classic, my nemesis John Gribben (Olympia) chopped with me for only his second recorded cash. Then he headed down to Run It Up Reno IX to win even bigger (and no chop) in Event #1 $100K GTD NLHE Miini Main Event, over 408 others. Gribben jumps from #1879 on the Leaderboard to #661.

Baker City, OR’s Dennis Jones notched his biggest-ever score in the RunGood Bossier City $100K GTD NLHE Main Event. The tournament more than doubled the guarantee, and Dennis took 2nd. Jones moves from #2444 to #791.

All the way back in Pennsylvania, Po Ying (Seattle) debuts #1414 with a 6th-place finish at  Parx Big Stax XXXI #2 NLHE, with over 1,400 entries.

Nicky Komphouvong from Portland climbs 750 places to #827 with his 7th-place finish in Big Poker Oktober/CardPlayer Poker Tour $500K GTD NLHE Main Event at the Bicycle Casino in LA.  It was Komphouvong’s lrgest-recorded cash.

Regrettably, Muckleshoot Casino submitted only the top ten finishers to Hendon Mob for the recent Fall Poker Classic. It’s better than Wildhorse Casino having submitted the Summer Poker Round Up as another Spring Round Up and including the results from only the first event, but as a poker reporter, you kind of expect full reporting, like any other major series.

Anyway, hometown (Auburn) player Damon Kerkes  won Muckleshoot Fall Poker Classic #1 $80K GTD NLHE to jump onto the Leaderboard at #1865 with his first big cash.

Max Young sticks in the #20 spot with two runner-up cashes. He came in 2nd in Muckleshoot #2 NLHE, then headed quickly down to Reno where he just missed out on the PokerStars Platinum Pass to next year’s EPT Barcelona, in Run It Up Reno #10 IX NLHE Moneymaker’s Road to the PSPC.

Adam Croffut (seated), Dan Beecher (behind, left), and Kenneth Richardson, Jr. (behind, right), photo via Heather Beecher

Everett’s Adam Croffut moves up two spots to #57 with his win in Muckleshoot #3 $80K GTD NLHEDan “Goofy” Beecher (Portland), Kenneth Richardson, Jr. (University Place, WA), and Chong Lee (Tacoma) tied in second place. Richardson and Lee are making their first appearances on the Leaderboard, at #1734 and #1752. Beecher moves up to #216 from #234.

Dupont, WA’s Alex Ding only has one recorded cash, but since it’s for first place in the  Muckleshoot Fall Classic $140K GTD NLHE Main Event, it’s a nice one to have. There was a seven-way ICM deal in the 350-entry tournament (the prize pool went nearly $100K over the guarantee). Ding’s victory puts him in #1214 on the Leaderboard. Coming in 2nd was Lynden, WA’s Dave van Weerdhnizen, climbing more than 100 places to #350. Third place in the tournament went to Jennifer Hughes from Gig Harbor, gaining more than 400 places to land at #615. A couple of slots in the deal fell to players from out of the northwest, but 6th was Post Falls, ID’s Nathan Thrush, getting his first major cash and landing on the Leaderboard at #1463. Finally, Matthew Dvorsak, from Tacoma, took 7th, jumping up almost 200 places to #290.

That’s the last report before the Wildhorse Fall Poker Round Up (7–17 November, PDF link with schedule and structures) but I do want to give a shoutout to this site’s benefactor Jeremy Harkin for the dedication to Big O that took him to the middle of Texas to play the Permian Basis Poker Series High Roller Big O (and to win it.) And don’t forget to pick up a copy of Ante Up Magazine if you see one (or read it for free online) the November issue is my debut as their PNW Ambassador.

Chinook Winds Fall Coast Poker Classic Series Championship

I was looking at the sweet, sweet trophy Stuart Young won at the Bend Poker Room Monster Stack Main Event at the end of the month and realizing that there weren’t any trophies given out at the Chinook Winds Fall Coast Poker Classic.

When John Gribben and I chopped the second of the $50K GTD tournaments heads-up the second night of the series, my original suggestion was to make a deal, then play out for a set amount. Tournament Director Matthew Moring said that was a no-go, any deal immediately ended the tournament (my suspicion was that had more to do with it being 5am than a hard and fast rule), so John and I agreed to an even chop. I asked for the win, John said he would like to get the picture because it was his first big win (and he’d pay me a little bit extra). I haven’t actually ever had a winner photo for a big tournament myself, and as it was, Matt took a couple of photos of the both of us as well as John by himself, and this is the one that ended up getting sent out.

But no trophy. If there had been or if there had been a casino championship on the line (as ther is for a World Series of Poker Circuit series or at the upcoming Wildhorse Fall Poker Round Upthe decision would have had to be a bit different. How much—if anything—would the trophy be worth to me in the negotiation? Do I care about the win on my Hendon Mob profile? Do I want to be known as being involved in only the third-most-egregious thing that Will Kassouf did?

Do Player of the YearGlobal Poker Index, or—most importantly—series champion points matter to me? If there’s a monetary reward (as at Wildhorse) or some other benefit that accrues to top performers (the Global Casino Championship contenders on the WSOPC Leaderboard can attend for free), then a friendly chop is not going to happen (#TeamNoChop c/o Angela Jordison).

Just for kicks, I went through and assigned points to players in the Fall Coast Poker Classic using the WSOP Circuit system for non-Main Event tournaments.

1st – 50 points
2nd – 37.5 points
3rd – 30 points
4th – 27.5 points
5th – 25 points
6th – 22.5 points
7th – 20 points
8th – 17.5 points
9th – 15 points
Remaining 20% of those in the money – 10 points
Remaining 30% of those in the money – 5 points
Remaining 50% of those in the money – 2.5 points

I didn’t count the Fall Coast Classic Main Event with the same point system as the WSOPC Main Events because it doesn’t automatically get the winner into anything (the winner at each WSOPC stop is automatically free-rolled into the Global Poker Championship) and because the price disparity between most of the events isn’t as great as at a WSOPC stop. My preference here would be to average out the points assigned to position in the case of chops, but the WSOP doesn’t do that. So here goes!

First off are the folks who won events without accruing any other points: That’s 50 points each for Casey Ring (Main Event), Adam Schneider (Monday evening $10K GTD freeze-out with an 11-way chop), Alex Kuzarov (#22 $40K GTD with a 6-way deal), Robert Fitzgerald (#11 $10K GTD HORSE with what looks like a 6-way deal), Robert Squires (#14 O8, maybe another 6-way deal), Tri Ton (#1 $125K GTD), and Jason Heiner (#7 $40K GTD 6-max, looks like a 4-way ICM chop). Andy Su won #2 ($50K GTD), Michael Mackie got 50 points for #10 ($30K GTD Seniors, some sort of FT deal), Gilbert Marquez got 1st in #18 ($25K GTD Big O, 3-way deal involving—oh, no!—Angela, how could you?), and Dan Anderson took 50 for #21 ($150K GTD High Roller).

Two players won a tournament and min-cashed another (2.5 points): Carl Oman won #17 ($40K GTD Big Bounty) and cashed the 6-Max; John Gribben won #5 (see above) and cashed the Main.

Richard Imel took 11th in #5 (5 points) and won #13 Super Boss Bounty for 55 points. Bohr He and Kevin Buck are the first players in this list who did not win an event but have more points than some of the players who did. Buck made the final table of #1, took third in #5, and cashed in #17. He was also at the final table for #5, took 6th in the 6-Max, and 9th in the Main Event. Jake Dahl final-tabled #14 HORSE, placed 3rd in $14 O8. and picked up 15th in the Main Event for his 55 points.

Cody Rogan was the third-place finisher for points with 57.5. He started strong with 4th place in #1, placed 4th again in #8, and min-cashed in #13 to pull just ahead of the rest of the pack.

Michael Freedom is the runner-up in points with 65 after a 2nd-place in #10 (Seniors) and 4th in #22. 37.5 for the former and 27.5 for the latter.

And the champeen is Graham Adam Duke, who picked up an remarkable 82.5 points, well ahead of the pack. Duke did not win a single event, but he made three deep runs, coming in 3rd in #2, 9th in #7 (which would be a final table except it was the 6-max), and runner-up in #21, the High Roller.

The Poker Mutant Antes Up

I meant to announce this on the blog last weekend but as my Twitter account was offline, I held off and I’m just getting to it now, but I’ve accepted the post of Pacific Northwest Ambassador for Ante Up Magazine, taking up the shoes Jammin’ Jay Zeman finally managed to put in the Goodwill bin long after he’d moved to the East Coast.

I’ll be doing round ups of as much poker room information as I can get hold of from poker rooms and casinos in much of the territory I was covering with the PNW Poker Calendar, but also trying to pick up info on cash game action that hasn’t really been part of my purview as a mostly tournament player (so tips are highly appreciated!)

My first submission covers the results of the Chinook Winds Fall Coast Poker Classic (and hopefully a couple of other Oregon goodies, depending on the editor’s choices), but just after I submitted the column (to be included in the November issue of the print magazine), I saw news of the imminent closing of the Tulalip Poker Room in a tweet from their account and sent it in.

Yay, I’m on the front page?

@pokermutant Twitter Account on Restriction

UPDATE: It took an entire weekend—the weekend where the Mike Postle/Stones Gambling Hall cheating scandal broke, nonetheless—but the account did come off restriction the morning of 30 September.

For some reason known only to the folks at Twitter, my @pokermutant account has been restricted since about Friday (27 September) at 8pm. No indication that it’s been hacked or that I did something untoward, though my last tweet was about the Bellagio 5 Diamond series, and I’d been discussing Galaxy Quest with Dara O’Kearney. That didn’t seem so offensive at the time, but I guess it was.

I just get routed to a page telling me to confirm my phone number, saying it’ll send me a text message, but I tried that so many times while I was playing the Friday night Final Table $10K GTD NLHE that eventually Twitter said I was restricted from doing that, too, even though I never got a message. Tried changing my passsword, which means I’m going to have to update it on the numerous devices where I use it, but I’m still restricted. Not the greatest timing for a reason I’m going to sit on until I can tweet again.

PNW Poker Leaderboard — 26 September 2019

It’s been a busy month for players from the Pacific Northwest and not just for those of us who were down at the Chinook Winds Fall Coast Poker Classic a couple of weeks back.

The big winner of the period was (mostly former) Portlander George Wolff, with a win in the British Poker Open Event #2 PLO at Aspers Casino in London, a £10,500 buy-in tournament with 30 entries, followed by the 2nd place finish in BPO Event #7 PLO, where 15 players put up £26K each. Wolff moves from #41 to #28 on the PNW Poker leaderboard as he closes in on the $1M mark in earnings.

We’ve mentioned before that it’s tough to move up a spot one you hit the top end of the Leaderboard, but James Romero did it finally, pulling himself into the #9 spot from #10, as one of only 2 US players in the money at Merit Poker Retro in Kyrenia, Cyprus. His 7th-place showing in the $5K buyin #13 $2M GTD NLHE Main Event was just enough to move him ahead of Rep Porter.

landen Lucas (Portland) had a good month, as well, coming in 2nd at WPT Deepstacks San Diego NLHE, a $1,100 buyin tournament with 252 entries, then heading north to WSOPC Thunder Valley #12 NLHE Main Event, where he came in 8th. He moves up nearly 1600 places on the Leaderboard with his two biggest-ever wins (a phrase you’re going to be hearing a lot in this edition), to #426.

Dipping into the results from Chinook Winds, Forks, Washington’s Daniel Anderson eclipsed his other Hendon Mob results (4 of them) by winning the Fall Coast Poker Classic #21 $150K NLHE High Roller, beating 65 other entries that put up $2,500 for the buyin. He goes from #1945 to #511. 2nd place wasn’t the first cash for Graham Duke (Hillsboro), but the other two on his record were earlier in the week, at the same series. Duke debuts at #748. It was far from the first recorded cash for Adam Barker of Bonney Lake, Washington (who I met because I was flopping sets of aces against his buddy in that day’s $40K GTD), but it was his biggest. Barker rises from #768 to #494. 4th place was Jake Davis‘s second (and largest) cash. The Corvallis resident enters the Leaderboard at #1431.

Salem poker veteran Casey Ring and Portland newcomer Rich Bak chopped #24 $250K NLHE Main Event, with Ring picking up his biggest cash and Bak picking up his first. Bak enters the Leaderboard at a very respectable #653; Ring moves from #434 to #254. Portland’s Chris Dillard picked up 3rd, and moves more than 2000 spots to #987. Long-time Beaverton fixture Sam Nguyen grabbed 4th and a 75-place jump to #303. Portland newcomer Danny Lee‘s first cash (5th place) pops him into #1782. And Rafael Stern (Seattle) moves from #1208 to #877 with a  6th-place finish.

A first cash for Portland’s Tri Ton in Event #1 $125K GTD NLHE puts him in at #1064. George Waller (Seattle) and Salem’s Ty Ege tied in second and third; Ege debuts as #1606 and Waller rises from #805 to #572.

Carl Oman (Ridgefield, Washington) picked up the win in Event #17 $40K GTD NLHE Big Bounty, jumping 55 places to #342.

Andy Su (Portland) won Event #2 $50K GTD NLHE (The One With the Big Overlay), and moves up 14 places to #176.

John Gribben (Olympia) and I (the Poker Mutant, Portland) chopped Event #3 $50K GTD NLHE after 12 grueling hours. John enters the Leaderboard at #1879 and I (the Poker Mutant) climb into the 3-digit range, from #1110 to #836.

Back outside of the beautiful Chinook Winds Resort Casino, Heartland Poker Tour East Chicago $200K GTD NLHE Monster Stack saw David Oppenheim (Mercer Island, Washington and no, not that David Oppenheim) get his best cash, with a 6th-place finish. He rises from #607 to #461.

Michael Palo (Woodinville, Washington) picked up 12th place at HPT East Chicago #11  NLHE Main Event, in a field of 579. His deep run moves him 13 places, to #157.

Finally, Dustin An of Redmond won the Venetian Deepstack Extravaganza III #4 $35K NLHE Monster Stack, jumping nearly 40 places to #306.

Still no full results from the Wildhorse Summer Poker Round Up; Fall is upon us in just 6 weeks. Probably be some action coming up on the Leaderboard from Run It Up Reno next month, as well as WSOPC Lake Tahoe and more!

2019 Chinook Winds Fall Coast Poker Classic — Day 8: ONE TICKET TO PARADISE

UPDATE: Announcement at the start of play that the 60-minute dinner break will be after Level 6 of the Main Event instead of Level 8.

When I got news yesterday that ’70s (& ’80s!) pop star Eddie Money passed away at the age of 70, my thought was of the only time I saw him in concert, at the first-ever concert held at Eugene’s Autzen Stadium, which had The Grateful Dead and Santana as headliners, with country-rockers The Outlaws and newly-minted star Eddie Money as opening acts. Kind of sobering to think that when he did that concert, he was half my current age.

Some high-school buddies and I decided to go. Checking back on the date—41 years ago in the summer of 1978—I’m not really sure if I needed to convince my parents to let me go (I was about to start my senior year in high school and I’m pretty sure it was my first rock concert), but maybe the fact that it was in the daytime and an open-air stadium worked in my favor. My buddies Chris Lee and Jon Pitchford were there, I was wearing a red t-shirt with a metallic silver unicorn applique on it (I was there for the Dead) from the science-fiction and fantasy book/game shop where I got my Dungeons & Dragons stuff (and which would be my employer for four nears starting the next spring). Somewhere I might still have the photo of the crowd that ran on the front page of the Eugene Register-Guard where I think I was able to spot the red dot of my shirt amongst the sea of people.

Nobody I knew listened to Eddie Money (or The Outlaws, for that matter) but his first album was ubiquitous that year, in a way that music really could be before the streaming era, MP3s, MTV, CDs, or event the Walkman, which didn’t come out until a year later. So you knew the standards by ear even if you weren’t listening to them. Anyway, RIP, Eddie!

Payouts in the High Roller

I busted out of Event #22 $40K NLHE just before the money in a hand I misplayed. We’d gone to dinner break with just under four tables, and I’d nearly doubled up just before the break to an average stack We had about a dozen players to go before the money. Our table was seven-handed, and when it folded to me on the first hand after break, I opened QJ to 10K from UTG2 (big blind was 4K). Everyone folded. So far so good. 100K in my stack, 25bb.

The second hand I picked up TT. UTG opened to 10K. I should have re-raised, but I was trying to be cautious of the big stacks behind me. UTG didn’t have me covered by a lot, but some of the players left to act were several times my depth. So I just called. First mistake. Everyone else folded.

The flop wasn’t horrible: Qx9x6x. Don’t remember suits, just that it was a rainbow. UTG checked and I checked behind. Second mistake.

The turn looks great: T UTG bets, I shove and he instacalls with KxJx of course. All the luck in the world will not get the board to pair, and I blow out in 29th place, just eight spots from the cash. So aggravating.

Anyway, the only event left on the schedule is Saturday’s Event #24 $250K GTD NLHE Main Event.

Starting stack is 40K (including the optional $25 10K dealer appreciation chips). Levels are 50 minutes on Day 1, with breaks every two levels. Breaks are 15 minutes long, except for the third and fourth breaks. Registration ends (no re-entry) at the end of the 30-minute break 3 (after Level 6). There’s a 60 minute dinner break after Level 8.

At the end of registration is a $200 addon for 30K in chips.

The first level starts with everyone 400bb deep, with the starting stack decreasing to 200bb in Level 2, 133bb in Level 3, then for Levels 4, 5, and 6: 100bb, 66bb, and 50bb, respectively. With the relatively large addon, A fresh starting stack will be 70bb.

One thing I like to do is compare the rate of increase in the big blind, or cost of level. If you figure the cost of maintaining at a particular level relates to the amount, you can see the levels where the structure ratchets up the pain for the short stacks. Below is a chart showing the structure from after the addon (Level 6) to after dinner on Day 2, including comparisons of how fast the big blind increases compared to the increase of the cost of a round (CoR).

An increase of 25%–33% is typical. I’ve highlighted the areas where the increase is greater than that. You can see that in Level 8, even though the big blind doesn’t increase all that much, the CoR jumps up by 50% (from 2,400 to 3,600) because of the ante increase. If you assume two minutes per hand and 25 hands in each level of Day 1, that’s 400 chips per hand on average, or 10,000 chips to blinds and antes for Level 8. If you came in with a 70K stack (starting and addon)  at the beginning of Level 7 and didn’t play a hand, you would be down to about 54K.

After dinner are another couple of levels with slightly-larger-than-average increases, but the surprising one is the lullaby at the end of Day 1, where  Level 12 smooths out, increasing by only a sixth of the previous level’s CoR.

The tournament today doesn’t have re-entry, so be careful out there! After this, it’s back into semi-retirement for me!

LevelAnteBBCost of Round (CoR)BB
rate of increase
rate of increase
End of Day 1


2019 Chinook Winds Fall Coast Poker Classic — Day 7: FRIDAY THE 13TH

See the inverse relationship between me winning at poker and me blogging? Cash big on Day 2, no blogs for a few days, then back to the daily blogging grind…

Even after a high like early Monday morning, a week of losing is a bit frustrating, not the least of which is because I was in the last of the High Roller satellites yesterday evening and managed to get A7 all in with 20bb from the button against kings in the big blind (not just ripping it in, it was my raise and 4-bet shove), and flop a flush draw, turn a straight draw, and whiff the river. So, no High Roller for me this morning; my bankroll management has gotten better since I have a job.

The series so far, coming into the final weekend: $4,900 in buyins (including 8 tournaments, 4 satellite tournaments, and one cash sesion). On the plus side: one $575 voucher for the Main Event and more than $10K in cash. Add in the room, meals, etc. and you can see why I’m not buying into the High Roller directly. Way easier to do these numbers when they’re not red.

So while all of the crushers are competing for the $150K guarantee today, I’ll be slaving away in the $40K guarantee salt mines. No giant payout at the end of that one, but I won’t be compromising my hard-earned profit.

Plus, I got word last night from Molly Mossey that I should be getting my piece of her EPT Barcelona cash soon (the check is in the mail!) so the summer has been pretty decent for a retired poker player/writer.

I was conflicted about whether I wanted to shell out the money for the Big Bounty tournament or wait for the Big O, so I put out a poll on Twitter. The results were tied, so I went with the first one, as it happened, I got to play both!

Yesterday was frustrating as Event #17 $40K GTD NLHE Big Bounty was a return to card deadedness. I opened AK got a call from the blinds and folded to an aggressive open on a 9-high flop. Opened tens under the gun and got four callers with a king and a queen on the flop and folded to a bet. Those were the only two decent hands I saw in the first couple of hours. I played A2 and managed to take a small pot from AxKx when I paired my deuce. I tweeted out that my VPIP was less than 5% and Angela Jordison replied from the other side of the room:

I lasted about four hours, then had tens again under the gun, got three calls against my raise, flopped 9x8x8x and jammed, getting called by Jx8x (offsuit). At least we were past the re-entry point.

Jumped into the Event #18 $25K GTD Big O got short real fast, got lucky and tripled up, then busted my first bullet in just about 30 minutes. Joe Brandenburg on my left in Seat 2 and a very aggressive young player in Seat 9 to my right.

Bullet number 2 lasted a couple of hours then lost a big hand just before the end of registration and decided not to add on.

The last 4-Seat GTD NLHE High Roller Satellite of the series started at 5pm and I got into that,

I don’t know if it was that the mix of players at the table had changed as the last weekend of the series approached or if it was a week of (for most of us) losses, but the atmosphere felt decidedly testier during this final satellite. It may well have been the latter because we started off with John Gribben and some other players who were familiar from previous events. The new addition I knew of was Max Young, who’s one of the more laid-back individuals at the table, so it wasn’t him.

Already mentioned how I ended that attempt. This was the only High Roller satellite that made the guarantee, handing out six vouchers plus a sad $35 to seventh place (that’s just under one tenth of the buyin and addon).

The High Roller is about to start! Good luck everyone! I’l be watching enviously from across the room…