Saturday, November 8, 2008

HPT Practice

Tonight is the first HPT live event in several months. The host called me earlier this week and asked if I was up for a little pre-HPT practice at Mohegan Sun for the 7:30pm nightly tourney on Thursday. My rubber arm twists very easily and 4 of us made the drive down. I arrived early, planning on playing a few hours of cash games before the tourney started.

I have my choice of several open tables and scout for familiar faces. Several tables are stacked with regulars and players I know, and one table appears to be touristy. There are no big stacks, and I take the first pot with air on a 3 flushed and paired board. There is a shorty across the table that reloads a hundo at a time until he finally decides the drinks are not really free if he is losing. I lose a big pot with AK when an older gentleman calls me down with A2 and catches a deuce on the river. I lose another pot to him with 99 vs his 88, again he called me down to the river with AJT on the flop and catches an 8. He didnt even bet his set when I checked to him on the river. The nice woman to my left gets stacked for 300 when her set of 8s runs into a younger guys set of 5s and he rivers quads. I overplay JJ from the straddle and lose a large pot to AK, leaving me stuck 200. My friends show up in time to rescue me from donkey tilt and we head over to the tourney tables. Wonka has an emergency at home and has to borrow my car.

There are 3 plays where I was favored by the poker gods, which could have crippled me or sent me to the rail. At my first table I raise from MP with 99 instead of making it 325 to go, I drop a 500 chip by accident and try to catch my mistake. I said 325 but dropped 825 but I don't bother arguing. The shortstack says all-in for 3K and I think about it for a minute. I decide that it is either a conflip or a small pair and make the call. He has TT vs my 99, but a 9 on the flop sends him home.

At my 3rd table I raise with a sooted A9 and my friend in the SB goes all in. I have him covered and we would basically just swap stacks if I lose. Getting 3-1 I make the call and he flips KQ suited. He spikes a Queen on the flop but I catch a backdoor flush and my friend has to wait chauffeer me home.

Again at the 3rd table I raise with a crappy sooted Ace-poop and get re-raised all in. At this point in the game there are 2 tables left and I need to chip up. Only 9 places pay, and I am not playing for 9th place. I make a very bad decision vs a tight good player and run into Kings. I knew she had me crushed but called like the donkey that I am anyway. An Ace on the flop double me up and cripples her. She manages to rebuild and makes the final table.

At the final table there are 3 big stacks and the rest are short or average. It doesnt take long before the chips are flying and there are several multi-way all-ins. When the dust settles it is me against the woman I sucked out on and she has the lead. We play heads up for about 40 minutes, at one point I was down 5-1. Once the stacks evened out she agreed to chop, which I was happy to take. It was 1:30am and my two friends had been waiting for a couple hours.

See everyone at the HPT tonight!

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