Saturday, December 25, 2010

Happy Holidays...

What's up world? Happy Holidays to everyone. It's about 4 in the morning on Christmas day. I took a nap earlier so I'm pretty much awake, on the lookout for Santa. I feel like I'm the only one awake. I might go for a bike ride after I write this blog, I'm in one of those zones I get into some nights. I'm looking forward to Christmas brunch and dinner tomorrow though. I'm starving haha.

Poker has been alright for me lately. I had a pretty good week but it could have been a lot better. It started with a 3rd place finish in the Sunday HORSE tournament on FTP. On Monday I entered heads up play in the 100r with a 5-1 chip deficit and couldn't beat JyMaster, so I took 2nd place, which I was happy about. I also got heads up for a PCA package (AGAIN) and somehow managed to lose when I had 3mil to his 400k at 40/80k. He won the next three allins. It was ugly. I then got deep in the 1k on FTP only to bust 25th place losing a monster pot AA vs QQ all in pre. My last score of the night was a 7th place finish in the 50r turbo on FTP as well.

On Tuesday I decided to grind again and went deep in the Stars 1k, busting 22nd place. I lost 4 coinflips in a row, went down to 5bbs and my 78 bricked vs AQ on a 463T board. Another ugly night! Wednesday, my parents put on a holiday poker tournament. I decided to play in it and so did online legend Stuart "Thedonator" Paterson. He bubbled it in 4th place and I made it heads up against my father. He doesn't really know how to play poker so Stu was helping him. He won the title by beating me KQ vs AJ all in preflop. If there was more room for play I hope I wouldn't have lost to him haha. After that I grinded online a little bit and made a couple more deep runs, getting 19th in the 100r 6max on FTP. I've been deep in a lot of big tournaments lately, so hopefully I can start pulling out some better finishes.

One of my dads friends showed up with a self made T-Shirt that was amazing...





Truly awesome. I didn't even know he knew that much about poker and the online websites, but apparently he knew a little bit haha. My dad actually won the T-shirt too. Maybe I will steal it from him and wear it to a tournament :-)

Other than poker things have been pretty good and busy. I'm looking forward to the New Year and whatever comes from it. I can't believe It's almost 2011... I hope everyone has a great end to 2010. Goodnight.

Also please vote for my friend Tim0thee for Mid Stakes Holdem Player of the year on poker table ratings. Here is the link. It says PTR voting right in the middle of the screen and you have to log in through facebook to vote. It's basically a popularity contest, but he deserves some recognition, so please vote for him because he deserves it!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Brazil Trip Report/Back Home...

This post will be lengthy. A lot has happened over the past few weeks. I am going to start where I left off on the last blog post and talk about the other half of my trip to Brazil. The post date might say 11/20. That's when I started writing this blog, but I am officially posting it 12/7 real early in the morning.

I went to the BSOP venue the day after I busted the main event to play the PLO event. Once I realized that there were a lot of FTOPS/great online tournaments going on, I decided to skip the PLO event. I borrowed a laptop at the venue and sat in the Full Tilt Poker lounge all afternoon grinding online. I made a couple deep runs but nothing spectacular. First place in the PLO event was only around 10k. It was a much better decision to play online that day.

The next day I played the BSOP $2k High Rollers event. It had 111 players with 12 being paid. I ended up busting in 23rd place. I played with a good Brazilian online player almost all day and thought I picked up a physical tell on him. In the hand before I busted, he 3bet with AQ and was priced into calling an all in vs. KK, which he lost. He didn't give off the weak tell. The very next hand I opened the cutoff with 9To into two tight players and the good Brazilian player. He three bet me and did the same weakness tell I had picked up on multiple times throughout the day. I 4bet shoved and he snap called me with pocket Aces. I guess my tell was off. I had been going with my reads in the tournament and they hadn't let me down yet. I know my play was unnecessary but I really thought I had a stone cold tell on the player. I'm glad I went with my read, but I still need to be aware of overall tournament situations. I had position on a very loose, aggressive player who would have given me a lot of chips. I didn't need to get involved in a pot against a good player right after he lost a decent sized pot. Live and learn.

That was it for the poker I played in Sao Paulo. We went to a couple great restaurants. One was on the top floor of Tivoli, our hotel. It probably had the best steak I've ever had. Mike Matusow and I had to order seconds. It was a Kobe steak and it melted in my mouth. Another restaurant we went to was a Brazilian Steakhouse. I took some pictures of the place.

I didn't get the best pictures of all the meats they brought around, but at least I took some. I tried a chicken heart for the first time. It was interesting, but not really my taste. It was a great dinner and I had a lot of awesome food. Next time I go to Brazil I need to enjoy more of their food and visit some more restaurants.

After all the poker was out of the way and the BSOP was finished, we decided to party. We went to a couple different places in Sao Paulo. One venue was a "country music" club with a live band. I only recognized one song they played. It wasn't like American country music. It was more upbeat, fun, and dance worthy. I'd say it was like pop music. The place was packed and we showed up really late but still had fun. Another club we went to was a hip-hop club. This was more of my style. They played only American hip-hop music. It was weird being in another country, in a club, where I understood the music and most of the other people didn't. That night was also a lot of fun though. It was my kind of atmosphere and almost everyone who was with us and showing us around Sao Paulo made it out that night.

Here's a picture of Mike checking out the lights in the club.

I was a little sad leaving Sao Paulo. I met a bunch of awesome people and I really enjoyed the country. I want to thank everyone again. I won't name everyone individually but you guys know who you are. All the people who showed me around, all the poker players I met, and everyone else I came in contact with when I was in Brazil... Thank you. You guys made me appreciate Brazil and I plan on coming back often. With that said, I was supposed to fly back to Las Vegas but changed my connection to fly right into Florida.

Thursday morning was when I arrived back to South Florida. I rushed back home because there was a $5k WPT taking place Friday in my backyard at the Hollywood Hard Rock Casino. I played Friday, Day 1A. The field had some really good players. I was card dead almost all day and only played a couple substantial pots. I won a few early, but towards the end of the night I lost some tough hands. I ended the day with only about 20 big blinds. I still felt good going into Day 2 on Sunday.

I had a decent table draw for Day 2 but I would have to double up to be able to make some moves. After about an hour of play the following hand took place. It folded around to third position and the player was turned around in his chair listening to commotion from the table behind us. The dealer told him action was on him, after a few seconds I told him also "Excuse me, sir the action is on you." He looked at me and at the dealer and responded with "Jeez. The dealer is tapping the table telling me and now you're telling me it's my turn." I told him I was short stacked and he wasn't paying attention so we were trying to get the action moving. He said something else to me in a rude fashion like I was out of line and proceeded to stall before finally folding. The player next to him raised, it folded to me on the button and I looked down at KQo and moved all in. The blinds folded and the raiser called with TT. The board came T9xxK and I was eliminated. The jerk then told me "Good game buddy." I told everyone at the table good luck and I told the jerk "Good game to you too" while I went to go shake his hand. I knew he was being sarcastic with his good game comment so I tried to shake his hand haha. He wouldn't shake my hand, which proved my point and made him look bad. Anyways, I kept my cool of course and wished everyone good luck again and left the casino. I don't understand how some adults who are much older than me can be so immature at times. I wasn't out of line at all but I don't like being disrespected. Anyways...

I also played in the Florida Million at the Palm Beach Kennel Club. It's a tournament that goes on all around Florida. It is a $550 buyin and the top 10% of the field from each location meet up in the finals. I played well and ran well to build up a big stack late in the tournament. I was probably one of the chip leaders and then lost a bunch of brutal hands to bad luck. KK vs AJ and AA vs 45o on a 5522 board. After those hands I didn't win another pot for an hour and became a shorter stack. We were down to 25 players left, with 15 making the money/finals. An older amateur player who was pretty solid and somewhat new to the table (He raised in late position and showed an ace to gain credibility) raised from the cutoff to 9500 at 1500/3000. I looked down at QTo. I had about 70k in chips and the raiser had ~90k. I figured his range for raising here was wide and it would take a real small range to call so close to the money. I moved all in on him and was SNAP CALLED. I thought for sure I ran into aces. I turned over my QTo and he showed QJo. Everyone at the table was shocked. I also was shocked as well lol. I never would have expected him to snap call me with QJo in that situation. I bricked and was eliminated. I don't mind my play, but I never in a million years thought that player would beat me to the pot with QJ. He didn't seem like that type of player but maybe I didn't have enough information on him. I thought I would be able to move my chips around and pick up some pots nearing the bubble.

I've been trying to get back in the swing of things. Working out, getting on schedule, grinding online. It's a busy month as far as holidays and other celebrations are concerned. I think I covered almost everything I wanted to in the blog. If I forgot anything I'll be sure to write about it. It took me a while to get this blog up and I don't even know why.

While I was in Brazil I did a fun interview with Super Poker. They asked me a lot of good and interesting questions. I wish I knew Portuguese but I translated the interview and got to understand most of it haha. You guys can check it out here: SuperPoker Interview with Tristan "Cre8ive" Wade. Goodnight!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Brazil Trip Report Part 1...

Mike Matusow and I left Vegas on the 10th to fly to Sao Paulo, Brazil. I have been to Aruba, Bahamas, and Canada. Other than that I've really never left America. I wouldn't consider those trips "international" since they are all pretty close and somewhat Americanized. I look at this trip to Brazil as being different. Which it has been so far.

It started off flying first class from Vegas to Houston. The flight was only a couple hours, but it was definitely more comfortable. Typically for me, first class flying is sitting in an exit row lol. I've never flown overnight or been in an airplane an unbearable amount of time in which I thought I would have to fly first class. Once we got to Houston, Mike took me into the gold lounge of our airline. I always saw people go into those places and never thought much of it. I was wrong haha. It was a four story room. Complete with internet, desks, sofas, couches, showers, food, and a bar. I was impressed. This was a place I see in every airport and I've always looked past it, maybe even looked down upon it, but I see the luxury behind it now for people who are always traveling.

The flight from Houston to Sao Paulo was not bad at all. Mike and I sat next to each other. Our motorized seats reclined backwards far enough to actually lie down. The leg rest portion of our chair also moved up, providing a nice reclining chair to fall asleep in. Each person had their own personal television that came up through the middle console which played 15 different movies. We were also served breakfast and dinner. Both of which were delicious. It was an experience and we were treated in relation to how much was paid for the tickets.

I've met a lot of great people since arriving in Brazil. Leo Bello (FTP pro and has written the most popular poker books in Brazil) picked us up from the airport. The traffic in Sao Paulo is ridiculous. I believe it is the second most populous city in North and South America. We finally made our way to the middle of the city and into our hotel. It took a while, but I like seeing how different countries are and experiencing what they experience. We met some more Full Tilt people at the hotel, all of whom are awesome. These guys have taken complete care of us and I'm sure my Brazil experience wouldn't be the same without them. For that I thank them.

That night I visited the H2 poker club. I was really impressed once again.

These are some pictures from the H2 poker club. It's incredible what they are doing. I don't want to talk too much about the poker. I have something else planned for all of that... So I will just leave you with the pictures of the club I took. There is way more to see then the few pictures I snapped.

After playing a little poker we went out for a couple hours and experienced some Brazilian night life. Like I talked about earlier, a lot of people have shown us a great time. After getting some sleep, we had a party to attend in Guarjura, which is about two hours away from Sao Paulo on the beach. I just found an article on the party here... From the Super Poker website.

The party was for Poker Villa. It is basically a house full of up and coming poker players. They are being taught how to play poker by some of the best. I met some great online and live Brazilian/South American poker players. I've either played with them for years or seen them around. There are too many to name right now but I will be sure to throw some names out in the last trip report. The house was gorgeous and right on the beach. Check out the link above.

Today I played in the $700 BSOP Main Event. The BSOP is the Brazilian Series of Poker. The tournament might have been the best run tournament I've ever been a part of. They did everything right. The venue was great, the service, the floor, everything! They don't have casinos here so pulling off what they did is pretty amazing in my eyes. If it wasn't so late I would rant and talk even more about it. Great job with the BSOP to everyone involved. I busted later in the night losing AJcc vs 88. I didn't get much going throughout the tournament. I even had to fold bottom set and was shown middle set (although it was an easy spot.) Tomorrow is the PLO event and then there is a $2k high rollers I will play too.

If you can't tell, I love Brazil. Part of it is because of the people I have met. They have embraced me and shown me around. Everyone has been really hospitable. I hope I can repay them one day when they visit Vegas or Florida. I have so much more to say but I am going to head to bed.. There's a lot more I will talk about in the future. Goodnight.

Goto If you want to watch live or read coverage.

Also this is part of an interview I did with on Wednesday during the Deepstacks360 online camp I did. DeepStacks Interview

Man there is so much going on... LIFE IS GOOD! Learn to appreciate everything.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


Vamooooo. What an appropriate title. It's a word that is used all the time by Brazilian poker players who root for other Brazilian poker players. That just so happens to be where I'm going tomorrow; Sao Paulo, Brazil. I am going with Mike Matusow for 8 days. There is a tournament series there so I am going to play some of the tournaments and discover Brazil. I'm pretty excited. I've never been to Brazil and I've heard a lot of great things about the country.

It should be an interesting trip with Mike. I've been staying at his house for the past week while I've been in Vegas, which has been an adventure in itself. He's been a good host and is a really good guy. You just have to be able to handle random craziness every now and then haha. I will keep the details to myself, but there isn't a dull day.

I watched the Main Event Final table on Saturday. I won't give any spoilers on that because the coverage is tomorrow. Other than that, I've been getting some poker business done and trying to stay busy. I played basketball last night and had my first workout in a week. My body is dead but I had a good time. I'm pretty tired now and need to sleep so I will keep this blog short. The next update will be from Brazil. Goodnight.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Vegas In November...

This is what I've always dreamed of. Coming to Vegas in November for the main event final table. The only problem is, I busted the tournament months ago...

I'm back in Vegas. I had a long day of flying in middle row seats. Southwest airlines and their first come, first serve seating policy doesn't fit me well. I had bad draws with the boarding positions. I'm not used to their system and always forget to check in early. The first flight from West Palm to Tampa was only about 45 minutes. That wasn't bad. The second leg of the trip from Tampa to Vegas was about a 5 hour flight. I slowly made my way to the back of the plane, hoping to find an aisle or window seat. I passed the last window seat that I positively knew wasn't occupied. The lady had her purse in the seat. I didn't want to deal with that and I also thought I saw a couple seats in the back. Well, I was wrong. I realized the bad news and decided to sit in the back row, middle seat. Another mistake. The guy sitting at the window was well built and bulky with broad shoulders. I also have wide shoulders and we were fighting for arm rest space. There are far worse problems in life though and I managed to make it to Vegas unscathed. No big deal, lesson learned.

I got picked up by a couple people from Deepstacks and we ate dinner at a tapas place. I believe it was my first tapas experience. The food was pretty good and I always enjoy eating a wide variety of food in one sitting. I tried a lot of different things and will definitely go back. Personally, It's fun to throw curve balls at your taste buds and try a lot of smaller dishes.

Tomorrow DeepStacks is having a Michael "The Grinder" Mizrachi and Mike "The Mouth" Matusow 360 camp. They both will teach poker strategies using a 360 degree camera to broadcast live over the Internet. It should be pretty neat, so I am here helping them out with that. I should be pretty busy with whatever else is going on around here. Come Saturday The Grinder will play out the Main Event final table and I will be there watching with the crew. It's pretty exciting to have someone I know at the final table, but I still am thinking about my deep run and wishing I could have done better. Realistically though, your chances of making the final table of the main event are slim to none. I'm ready to try again next year though.

I'll blog more this week. Just wanted to keep this short and write a little something. I have a couple other things to talk about later on in the week. Goodnight.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Decent Week...

I've had a decent week at the virtual felt. On Tuesday I chopped the 100r on Stars when I was the chip leader. I always bust after I chop. I never get the PLBs or anything haha. Both players were solid and the chop was in my favor so I went with it.

I had a couple other final tables throughout the week as well. Today I played and got deep in a few tournaments. I was heads up in a PCA package satellite. First place won the 15k package and 2nd place walked away with $700. I played a tough opponent who didn't fold much, ever, and he got the best of me. After that defeat I will still in the 50 cubed on FTP. I got heads up in that as well and lost an unfortunate pot with KJs vs K6o on a K23cc86 board. I check raised the flop, bet the turn, and shoved the river. I'm almost certain he would have called anyways with his king if he didn't hit two pair so I played it fine, just unlucky.

I feel like I'm playing really well, and I'm sure I've been running alright too. It would have been nice to get the PCA package win out of the way in October, but I have a couple more months to try to win one. I might be missing a lot of live tournaments I wanted to play in which I'm not happy about, but I will live with it. The NAPT in La, and the 5k WPT in my backyard at the Hard Rock in Hollywood Florida. I have a few things I might be getting into in the next couple of weeks so we will see what pans out. If those things don't work out then I'll be able to play those events. Either way its a winning situation.

Other than the couple exciting things coming up in the next few weeks, there isn't much going on. I am working out, playing poker, coaching poker, car shopping (STILL -- although I think I've narrowed it down) and other random activities. I will be making that announcement shortly too. This blog never does well with announcements but I promise it is coming lol.

I feel like this particular blog doesn't have much substance so I'm going to talk about mental toughness in poker for a second. It is probably one of the best characteristics you can have if you are a poker player. I was talking to my buddy Steve the other day and he was saying that because of our experience in poker, we would be able to make it doing whatever we decide to do. If we wanted to venture into another profession we would succeed. I agree with him in the aspect that making a living off of poker is tough. You can lose money, you are constantly defeated, it's an emotional roller coaster, etc... If you don't have a good understanding of how poker works, you can never make it in the field. I am a very competitive person. I've come to the realization that I will be a loser 99% of the time in tournament poker. Maybe it's not actually that high, but the probability of winning a tournament is very low. That's just what it is. The variance involved in tournaments is out of this world. Once you come to reality with all of this you will become a better poker player. There are times when I feel unlucky, or get frustrated with how a poker session went. If you are able to see poker for what it is and grab a hold of it, it will help elevate your game to another level. It's not just about winning the hand, or winning the tournament. It is about decision making. What you do and why you do it. If you are constantly making the right decisions, everything else will fall into place.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Short Post...

I'm on my way to Calder casino in a minute to play the $225 Mike "The Grinder" Mizrachi tournament. We had a camp there yesterday and today is the tournament. Should be a good time. I have to wait a couple days before I make that announcement I talked about in the last blog pot, but it will definitely be happening this week. I have a couple awesome things to talk about...

Have a good weekend everyone!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Read This, Learn Something...

First, let me say that I have been really busy doing a bunch of miscellaneous things. I went up to Orlando, back to South Florida... I've been all over. I played poker tonight for the first time in a week and got 9th in the 100r and was also deep in the $163 on FTP. With about 20 players left FTP/Stars disconnected me (along with a lot of other players apparently) and when it came back up 25 minutes later, I had 2.5bbs and lost. Hopefully they compensate me and the other players. Some players were still playing, so I'm sure they were just eating up the blinds and antes until we came back. We will see.

Last blog post I posted a hand that took place in the 100r vs ISpewChips.

PokerStars Game #50850218637: Tournament #334010506, $100+$9 USD Hold'em No Limit - Level X (300/600) - 2010/10/09 16:34:01 ET
Table '334010506 10' 9-max Seat #3 is the button
Seat 1: danskemann (7802 in chips)
Seat 2: Cre8ive (28600 in chips)
Seat 3: babyshark33 (18322 in chips)
Seat 4: TMoney0209 (25597 in chips)
Seat 5: I Spew Chips (32594 in chips)
Seat 6: flpro157 (10181 in chips)
Seat 7: ocrowe (55207 in chips)
Seat 8: Schildy1984 (15432 in chips)
danskemann: posts the ante 50
Cre8ive: posts the ante 50
babyshark33: posts the ante 50
TMoney0209: posts the ante 50
I Spew Chips: posts the ante 50
flpro157: posts the ante 50
ocrowe: posts the ante 50
Schildy1984: posts the ante 50
TMoney0209: posts small blind 300
I Spew Chips: posts big blind 600
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to Cre8ive [Qd Kd]
flpro157: folds
ocrowe: folds
Schildy1984: folds
danskemann: folds
Cre8ive: raises 600 to 1200
babyshark33: folds
TMoney0209: folds
I Spew Chips: raises 2085 to 3285
Cre8ive: calls 2085
*** FLOP *** [2h 6d Kc]
I Spew Chips: bets 3795
Cre8ive: raises 4070 to 7865
I Spew Chips: raises 21394 to 29259 and is all-in
Cre8ive: calls 17400 and is all-in
Uncalled bet (3994) returned to I Spew Chips
*** TURN *** [2h 6d Kc] [9h]
*** RIVER *** [2h 6d Kc 9h] [6c]
*** SHOW DOWN ***
I Spew Chips: shows [3c 8d] (a pair of Sixes)
Cre8ive: shows [Qd Kd] (two pair, Kings and Sixes)
Cre8ive collected 57800 from pot

I posted this hand because I wanted people to actually think about the hand. I wanted to give a legitimate response in the blog, like it was an awful play. It looks ridiculous, but sometimes you are going to have to look stupid in poker. I know ISpewChips is a good player. So what do I do? I look at a hand like this and try to understand why he did what he did.

We both have around 50bb stacks. Those are big stacks at this point in the 100r. I'm sure he thinks my min-raise opening range there is pretty wide on the cutoff, so he decided to 3bet. Now he gets flatted. So my range is changing in his eyes because my flatting range is different than my 4betting range (assumption for the sake of discussion.) Now the flop comes K62 rainbow. He continuation bets, and I raise. What can I have here?

From ISpew's perspective... AK would likely be in Cre8ive's 4betting range preflop, so for this to be a value raise to get it in for 50bbs Cre8ive's range is pretty small. Consisting of 22, 66, AA, maybe some other hands??? Would Cre8 set mine preflop with 22 or 66 here? Would he raise KK on the flop? Is his raise/get it in range AA/sets/bluffs?

Since ISpew felt like my range for raising the flop for value was really small, he decided to move all in on the flop thinking that I could only call him with a small range of hands. He is right in that line of logic. In a 3bet pot, my range is consolidated and hands can be eliminated. This train of thought is the same reason why I raised the flop with KQ. I'm representing a small range of hands that I want to get value with. Would I really raise the flop with 99/TT (assuming I didn't 4bet those hands) and want to get all the chips in the middle? On the flip side, should I be raising a board of that texture with a hand like 99/TT to get someone to shove worse? This is the evolution of poker.

Although the hand looks really ugly, it is poker at it's finest. Two minds battling it out. Who can solve the puzzle first? There isn't always a right and wrong answer in poker. Sometimes you will look stupid, but if you have a reason as to why you looked stupid, it makes it acceptable lol. I have looked stupid plenty of times in my poker career, but I had logic behind my stupidity. In poker... stupidity with no logic is still stupidity; otherwise it is enlightenment.

I could talk more about the hand, but I will leave it at that. I wanted to show everyone that although something might look horrible, it really isn't. Don't look at it for what it is, look deeper, learn something.

This Friday I will be doing a DeepStacks Live camp in Miami with November Niner Michael "The Grinder" Mizrachi and Matt Graham. It's at the Calder casino at 1pm on October 22nd. If anyone is interested, they can contact me through my e-mail or sign up through by clicking DeepStacks Live in the top left corner. I'll have another blog post up on Thursday night with an announcement I've been waiting to make. Goodnight.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Great Weekend...

I got back to Florida on Wednesday. In the last blog I talked about how I was going to Niagara Falls, NY for a Deepstacks camp. Let me say that this camp was overall one of the best I have been involved in. I had a lot of fun. I arrived at the Seneca Casino on Friday and played a cash game at night with Mike Matusow. After that, all of the DeepStacks crew went out to a great dinner with the staff that runs the poker room. Later that night I went to Canada to visit my friends I stayed with during the WSOP over the summer (Tim0thee, Smerks, Stainley 88.) It was nice having the Canadian border literally two minutes away from the hotel/casino. We had a couple drinks at Fallsview casino and caught up for a couple hours. I couldn't stay out too late because I had to be up early for the camp in the morning.

The camp was a huge success. All of the students were great and it went by really fast. After the camp all of the DeepStacks pros played in their $550 tournament. It got 140 runners. I played very patiently but could never get momentum to build a nice stack. I managed to survive and do my best, losing a flip 55 vs AQ in around 30th place. I went back up to my room and met up with Mike. He convinced me to go out with him and some of other friends. We went to Fallsview again to one of their clubs. It was a pretty quiet night again because we had to wake up in the early morning to go to the Bills vs Jets game in Buffalo.

We were supposed to get to the Stadium around 11-12 so we could tailgate but there was a lot of traffic and a couple of us were hungover lol. I was amazed at the stadium and the crowd. The whole atmosphere was just unbelievable to me. The NFL games in Florida aren't like that. It was raining and cold and the place was packed. It felt like I was in a Madden NFL game. The Bills fans are diehard fans! It was neat that they also played their in state rivals, the Jets. There was just something about being among tens of thousands of people in the cold and rain that made the experience that much better. The Jets ended blowing the Bills out, unfortunately. The energy in the stadium was great and I wish it would have been a close game.

Wow, I'm playing online right now and this hand just happened... in the 100r.

PokerStars Game #50850218637: Tournament #334010506, $100+$9 USD Hold'em No Limit - Level X (300/600) - 2010/10/09 16:34:01 ET
Table '334010506 10' 9-max Seat #3 is the button
Seat 1: danskemann (7802 in chips)
Seat 2: Cre8ive (28600 in chips)
Seat 3: babyshark33 (18322 in chips)
Seat 4: TMoney0209 (25597 in chips)
Seat 5: I Spew Chips (32594 in chips)
Seat 6: flpro157 (10181 in chips)
Seat 7: ocrowe (55207 in chips)
Seat 8: Schildy1984 (15432 in chips)
danskemann: posts the ante 50
Cre8ive: posts the ante 50
babyshark33: posts the ante 50
TMoney0209: posts the ante 50
I Spew Chips: posts the ante 50
flpro157: posts the ante 50
ocrowe: posts the ante 50
Schildy1984: posts the ante 50
TMoney0209: posts small blind 300
I Spew Chips: posts big blind 600
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to Cre8ive [Qd Kd]
flpro157: folds
ocrowe: folds
Schildy1984: folds
danskemann: folds
Cre8ive: raises 600 to 1200
babyshark33: folds
TMoney0209: folds
I Spew Chips: raises 2085 to 3285
Cre8ive: calls 2085
*** FLOP *** [2h 6d Kc]
I Spew Chips: bets 3795
Cre8ive: raises 4070 to 7865
I Spew Chips: raises 21394 to 29259 and is all-in
Cre8ive: calls 17400 and is all-in
Uncalled bet (3994) returned to I Spew Chips
*** TURN *** [2h 6d Kc] [9h]
*** RIVER *** [2h 6d Kc 9h] [6c]
*** SHOW DOWN ***
I Spew Chips: shows [3c 8d] (a pair of Sixes)
Cre8ive: shows [Qd Kd] (two pair, Kings and Sixes)
Cre8ive collected 57800 from pot

Pretty sick lol... I guess he was living up to his name. Just thought I would throw some poker in here since that hand just happened.

After the Bills game we went to the Big Tree Inn in Orchard Park, NY. It's right near the Bills stadium. Since we were with THE MOUTH we got hooked up of course and got to watch football and eat/drink upstairs above the bar. It's incredible how popular Mike is. Everyone loves him. Whether it be for his entertainment value or his poker skill, he has a lot of fans. So many people came up to him throughout the weekend. He handles his popularity really well.

The day after that, we were supposed to leave Buffalo but my flight was canceled. Me and Chris (DeepStacks CEO/Owner) were supposed to fly to Milwaukee for a meeting. While I was loading my luggage in the trunk, I gave myself a black eye lol. The rental car we used had a really low hanging trunk. I bent my head down as I lifted my luggage up and smacked myself right in the eye. It's still healing. So we left the airport once we found our flight was canceled and realized we had to stay in Buffalo another day! Great! Haha. There isn't much to do there as far as we could tell and the weather wasn't that good. We watched the Dolphins play the Pats in a local bar which was just about empty. The next day we made it to Milwaukee.

I must say Milwaukee is a beautiful city. I was really impressed. It was a big city, clean, and not that busy. I only got to explore a little bit but I enjoyed the colder weather and walking around. I'll talk more about the meeting and what I did in Milwaukee in couple days. Everything went well and it was a successful trip. We were there for only one day and now I'm back in Florida.

I did an interview over the phone a couple weeks ago for a website called PokerGob. If you want to listen to it check it out here.. PokerGob Interview. It's an up and coming poker site. I haven't explored the site too much but check it out and let me know what you guys think.

As far as the WSOP coverage goes, I haven't seen all the episodes but I heard I made a couple more appearances. I don't actually think I was involved in hands like the Day 1B coverage. I was probably just at the table or near the action. I didn't make any featured tables on my way to 113th place, so that hurts my chances to have more coverage. No big deal to me though, I don't mind, but a couple people hit me up saying they FINALLY saw me on TV lol. If I see the clips and it's anything exciting I will post the videos on the blog.

Hmmm.. what else did I have to say? I also got to see a little of the Niagara falls and the Horseshoe falls. It was really neat. I'm still playing poker online. I'm currently deep in a PLO tournament (4/16), the 100r (14/46), and a couple others. If I remember anything else I'll let you guys know. Hopefully I can win these tournaments. This blog is probably already long enough. Thanks for reading.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Deja Vu...

Once again I have somehow managed to not blog in about a month. I've been thinking about blogging on the low, but didn't allow myself to get involved with it. Now that I'm staring at the template, I feel back at home... How I've missed my love, the blog!

Let me quit with all of that nonsense lol. Things have been pretty busy as of late. As most of you in the poker community know, the WCOOP just ended on Sunday. It was three weeks of hell. I had a couple cashes, couple deep runs, but nothing really substantial. I was having a good week last week in MTTs. I finished 1st in the 100 turbo on stars, and got three handed vs Thayer and DFish in the $163 on FTP. I finished third in that, which was disappointing to say the least.

You might have been wondering why I said "I was having a good week..." in the paragraph above. That is because even a couple decent scores last week were overshadowed by no success in WCOOP events. It is definitely frustrating. The WCOOPs are a whole different beast. The structures are absolutely insane. It can be tough to adjust to the long levels and 20+ hours of poker online. I think I played very well overall during the series, but that isn't to say I can't/couldn't play better. That is how MTT poker is as well. If you don't have immediate results or success, you apparently don't know what you're doing. Variance is either your best friend, or your worst enemy. Don't let it get the best of you though.

Now that the WCOOP is over, I am taking a couple days off from playing online. I am heading to New York tomorrow to teach a DeepStacks Live course at the Seneca Casino in Niagara Falls (on the US side.) On Sunday I am going to go to the Bills vs. Jets NFL game with Chris (DeepStacks CEO) and Mike Matusow. Hopefully some of my buddies from Toronto can make it down. It would be cool if I could take a day trip to Toronto and see the city. I've heard great things but have never been.

Other than that, I have just been working out, playing basketball, playing poker, coaching poker, and... oh and I am looking to buy a car. I'm not sure what I will get yet. Nothing too fancy or anything. I am thinking about getting a nice, used car with low mileage. When I figure it out I will let you guys know. Any suggestions or advice, throw it at me!

I will have some other news to announce in the next couple of days/weeks so that should also be exciting! I will wait to see how things develop before I talk about it here, but expect a blog post about it soon. I will be back blogging more frequently again. Goodnight and good luck.

I also edited the WSOP video coverage I had in the last post. The video was removed on youtube.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Long Time No Talk...

Hey everyone! Glad to see some people actually still check my blog even though I haven't updated in it a long time. It's been about a month since my last entry. This blog will probably be real long and might include some ramblings. I will organize it so you can skip over parts you are not interested in lol.

Since I've been back from Vegas I've played SOME poker at the casinos and online. I haven't played too much in either but I'm starting to get back into the grind. I spent a couple weeks resting and relaxing from the WSOP, then was busy for another week or so. I took a one day trip out to LA for a meeting and have been bouncing around Florida as well. I've spent a lot of time with friends and family. It just feels like I have a lot going on around me at the moment, but I need to manage my time better too. I have to get a couple things sorted out before the WCOOP comes. I probably feel busier than I actually am, I just have to get some things accomplished that I've been putting off, that's all.

I played in a basketball tournament a couple weeks ago with a bunch of my buddies who play professionally. Stu (thedonator) and I put the team in the tournament. We had a couple tough games. We smacked the team who ended up winning it by 20 in the first game, then we lost a tough game on a buzzer beater that we shouldn't have lost. One of our best players hurt himself and a couple other guys couldn't make it to the next games. It was a disaster considering we should have won the tournament altogether and pocketed some money, but it was a good time regardless. There were a lot of professional players in the tournament. It was a tough tournament but we had a good team and would have done better had a couple things gone our way.

Other than that things have been pretty normal. Working out, hanging out, doing miscellaneous things.

Like I said briefly above, I have been playing poker here and there. When I first got back to South Florida I played poker for like 5 days straight in the casinos. I played a couple tournaments and then a couple cash games sessions. I'm glad we finally have cash games here! It's awesome but I only played a total of three times. The games aren't as good as they could be, but it is still nice of having the option to play somewhere. I'm still trying to figure out the best way to play online/casino/etc.

I played a few FTOPS events last week and have come close to winning the 100r turbo on FTP the last 2/3 times I played it. I got 8th and 11th. I guess that really isn't close to winning, but close enough to mention! I was 1/8 at the final table and donked my way to an 8th place finish. I made a couple questionable plays that I wish I could take back. I'm not completely back into grind mode though but I probably will be once the WCOOP rolls around.

WSOP Day 1B:
So I've been meaning to talk about the WSOP for a while now. I don't remember all of my big hands but I remember most of them. I actually received some coverage from Day 1B in two pots I played against Phil Laak. I'm not sure if this will lead to more coverage from ESPN but it was cool finally making some TV time. People always ask me "Will you be on TV?" and I always respond with if I make a big final table or something. It's pretty neat. I don't really look at it like a big deal but I guess it is bigger than I realize. Either way it was cool to watch and maybe I will get more coverage down the road in the tournament.

At about 2:00 minutes in I win a small pot off Laak and then at 14:00 minutes was a big pot where I cooler Phil with top set vs bottom two. That hand is kind of interesting because I had picked up something on Phil and knew he was real strong on the flop, but there was a cannon behind us so I decided to flat.. It worked out when we got the money in on the turn but there was more to the hand than just a heads up pot with top set vs bottom two. I think it was 4-5 ways on the flop.

One of the craziest hands I played in all of the main event was on Day 1. What I'm about to type is going to sound absurd to some, but here it goes. At 100/200 no ante, a tight player opened from the hijack to 750. The button who was an aggressive player called and I called with KQo in the big blind. The flop came JJTcc and we checked to the button. He bet 1100 and I raised to 2900. The tight player folded and now the button reraised me to 4k. This wasn't a legitimate raise. His min raise should have been to 4700. The dealer didn't realize, and neither did I, because at the time the dealer had pulled in the bets and just my 1800 was out there, so it looked like it was a legit raise. I didn't realize that this happened until I told someone the hand later that night. So now it is 4k to me (and I didn't realize this wasn't correct.) and I put in a fourth bet on the flop and make it 6700. He calls instantly. The turn is the 6h and I bet 7k with 12k behind. He calls once more. The river is the Qh. The board is JTTcc6hQh and I check to him. He puts me all in and I call. He says "Do you have a jack?" I told him he has to show his hand. He says "Two pair!" while I wait for him to show me his cards. He finally turns over 99 and I scoop the pot to double up to 58k early in the day.

There was a lot more than meets the eye to this hand. I didn't play it the best way I could have but I had history (similar hand where I folded flop to 3rd bet) with this specific player and knew what he was capable of. I hadn't been out of line or played any big pots previous to this one, but I guess he thought I had some spazz in me. I probably gave him a little too much credit in the way he looked at poker. He was definitely trying to run over the table and in my opinion he thought he was the best one there. His banter at the end of the hand asking me if I have a jack leads me to believe he wasn't as good as I thought he was. Either way he said he thought I had nothing and I'm not sure why he bet the river if that was the case.

I didn't enjoy calling all in a couple hours into the Main Event, and I know this spot was probably stupid to take, but I was fairly certain of his holdings and how he would play certain hands up to this point. He had played a lot of pots and I felt in touch with his style. That's the reason I ended up playing this hand like I did. I don't suggest it to others though lol. It was not the best hand of poker ever played. It might be one of the worst hands ever played in the WSOP Main Event haha.

I'll talk more about the Main Event in the next blog. I have some other interesting hands to talk about. I have to get some sleep. It feels good to be blogging again! Goodnight.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Aftermath Thoughts...

Aftermath is a very powerful word, but I'll let it stand. It's been over a week since I busted the WSOP Main Event. I am very pleased with my performance throughout the whole summer. I still wish I was a part of the November Nine though. Now I'm back in Florida relaxing. I've just been working out and hanging out. I haven't really touched poker, although I'm always thinking about it... even in my sleep.

I had a dream I was still in the Main Event last night. There were still 60-70 players remaining. I had a nice stack and I could feel I was on the verge of closing in on the final table. I woke up and I was thinking to myself "Okay Tristan... You're heading into Day 7 of the ME. Let's take a shower and get ready to play some poker today." I thought about it for another second while I laid in bed... I must be crazy. They already had the November 9! I had to convince myself I was already eliminated from the tournament. I haven't been dwelling on busting from the main event but maybe my subconscious has.

Life back in Florida isn't so bad. I've seen rain a few times in the past week. I enjoy it when it rains sometimes. Some people hate when it rains too much, but being in Vegas for two months with no rain, I'm glad I got to see some again. I caught up on Season 7 of Entourage. It is the only TV series I have actually followed. The other shows like 24, Lost, etc. I never got into because I didn't want to have to wait to watch the end. A couple summers ago I watched the first 3-4 seasons of Entourage and was hooked.

I'll get back into playing poker in a couple days. There is a $2k tournament in South Florida I will be playing soon. I also am looking forward to jumping in the cash games and seeing how they are now that poker is legalized in Florida. It hasn't really hit me yet. Once I get to see everything in motion I'm sure I will be amazed at the progress Florida has made on the poker end. I am also planning on writing a WSOP Main Event summary where I will talk about some hands I played, and most likely a summer trip report, where I write about my summer in Vegas/WSOP. We'll see. I will definitely do the former if not both. Goodnight. Expect that new blog shortly.

Edit: I guess this blog didn't have many thoughts in it lol. Wait for my next one!

Friday, July 16, 2010

113th Place...

Thanks everyone for the support. It really means a lot. I battled hard today and things didn't end up going my way. I won the first pot of the day and got up to 1.5m and slowly lost it back. I couldn't get anything going. About 4 hours in at 15k/30k/4k ante I was knocked out when I had about 750k in chips. I'm happy with how I played and have no regrets. I felt like I had a good feel for everything as well as the players. I was super comfortable and not nervous at all. It just wasn't my tournament. I busted about 30-40 minutes before the dinner break in 113th place for $57,102.

Overall I had a great World Series of Poker. I had a couple deep runs (including a final table bubble in the double shootout), cashes, and bubbles. I felt like I played really well the whole summer and I look forward to playing more live poker tournaments. I believe my game has elevated to another level and I like challenging myself with that belief. Things can only get better from this point on. I doubt I will have to wait for the next WSOP to have another big sweat. The Main Event is one of the few poker tournaments in the world that can really change your life. I'm disappointed I didn't do better, but I am proud of myself for doing my best. Everything I did had a reason. Every fold, every call, every raise; I knew what I was doing. I stayed level headed the whole time and never got excited or dejected. My mentality has definitely changed this summer and it will only make me a better player and a better person.

I'm not sure what I'm going to do now. I am heading back to Florida tomorrow. I have been in Vegas for almost two months! It has gone by very fast. I look forward to playing poker in Florida now. I also want to continue to play high-level, live tournament poker. Maybe I will play my first WPT this year. Only time will tell. I'm going to get some rest and relax for a couple days. Right now I feel strange. I'm lightheaded and it feels like my ears need to pop. Definitely a weird feeling lol. I hope I'm alright and a little sleep cures my problem. I'll be fine.

Maybe I will talk about some big hands I played during the Main Event. There were definitely a lot of crazy pots that went down, including one hand from Day 1 which was just absolutely insane. We'll see how I feel, if I want to talk about some hands and give out some of that information. I will probably write a trip summary or something as well when I get some time.

Once again I just want to say I appreciate everyone who showed support and cheered me on. I know there's a lot of you. Thank you. I'm glad you guys could share the experience with me and I hope you enjoyed the ride. Two deep runs in the Main Event in 5 years isn't so bad. Hopefully I get a couple more chances in the near future. Thanks again. Goodnight.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Made Day 6...

Another day in the bag, along with 1.23m in chips (Yes -- 1.23 MILLION chips. Enough of the K's.) The average chip stack is 1.07m. There are roughly 200 players left. Today was just a steady grind. I started with 767k and chipped up slowly throughout the day. Interestingly enough, I didn't play a pot over 300k today. That tidbit of information is mind blowing to me. We played 3k/6k, 4k/8k, 5k/10k, 6k/12k, and 8k/16k and I didn't get in one pot over 300k. Not to say that I wouldn't have.. it just didn't happen. It was a slow paced day for me and I'm fine with that. I was up to about 1.4m on my peak but blinded down some. There is an hour left at 8k/16k/2k ante and then I think we go to 10k/20k. The pots should be getting pretty big from here on out. I heard we play down to 63 players tomorrow. I believe I am 65th in chips out of the final 205.

I'm not sure what else there is to say. I have three more days to go. That's all. Three days. Three days until the November 9 is set. Hopefully I am fortunate enough to be one of those final 9. I will continue to do my best and see where it takes me. Thank you everyone for the support. I appreciate it a lot. Three more days.

Here's me decked out in some DeepStacks/FTP patches for TV. I hate hats lol. I never wear them and didn't want to have it on backwards at the time... oh well lol.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Made Day 5...

Another day in the books. I am sitting on 767k in chips. The average is 380k. There are 574 players left and we are in the money. I am guaranteed 21k I think. I haven't looked, I don't care. I started off with a nice stack today, lost a couple decent sized pots, and moved to a new table. The new table had Cole South (CTS) who is an amazing cash game poker player. He was two seats to my left. It also had a couple other good players. I was settled into this table all day.

My stack went down from around 150k to 360k then I lost a massive pot where I folded top two pair on the river. The pot was about 300k and I went from 360k to 220k after it. I asked the floorman who was watching the hand "If I expose my hand is my hand dead?" We were heads up, I bet the river, the player moved all in, and action was on me to fold or call. The floorman answered "No." So I turned over my two pair. I ended up folding and the floorman then came up to me and told me I was receiving a one round penalty for showing my hand. I was completely baffled. Why didn't he tell me that was the consequence of showing my hand when I asked? I tried to ask for other opinions but all the WSOP staff said I had a penalty. Fair enough. I know the rule, but at the time I wasn't really thinking about it and was more focused on the hand and trying to get more information. I brain-farted and forgot that that was the rule lol. It's basically my fault, but I thought since the floorman was there he would tell me the rule. I was wrong. He claimed I flipped my hand over too quickly before he could say anything else... which is not true. Oh well.

So after that hand, I served my penalty (we were about 40-50 out of the money on the bubble) and went back to the table. We eventually made the money and I grinded the 150k shortstack until the 3k/6k level. I then doubled up twice to 650k and chipped up a little more to end the night where I'm at with 767k. There is an hour left at 3k/6k/1k ante and after that we will play 4k/8k/1ka. We will be playing another 8 hours of poker tomorrow and I imagine we will get down to the top 150 or so. We will see.

That's about all there is to say. Today went by pretty fast. I chatted it up with Cole for a while and another player named Tommy. Both are high stakes cash game players; nice guys and good professionals. It's going to be tough since we are now in the money I can't listen to my iPod anymore to keep my sanity. I will probably listen on break when I can. I really hate that rule. Is someone really going to tell me how to play my hand through my iPod? I know, I know. People can cheat... but it would just be so ridiculously hard to unless you were at a final table/featured table where the hole card cameras were. It's a pretty pointless rule. Anyone who isn't paying attention can miss the action. It doesn't matter if they are listening to music or not. Enough of that rant lol. I'm about to get some sleep and hopefully survive another day. Goodnight.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Made Day 4...

Hopefully my blog titles stay boring for the next couple days. Anyways, I made Day 4 of the WSOP $10k Main Event. There are currently 1200 players left out of 7319 that started. I have 286k and the average stack is about 175k. We make the money when we get down to the last 747 players, which will happen sometime tomorrow. I'm assuming it will take at least half the day maybe longer for us to make the money. I believe we will play another 8 hours tomorrow.

I've just been doing my thing. Playing my best and not worrying about anything else. I'm in a good state of mind. I'm not excited, but I realize the position I'm in as well. I've realized you can't let your emotions roller-coaster when you play tournaments. You will just be bringing yourself up to let yourself down. I'm going to stay level headed until the tournament is over. I'm also going to do the best that I can do and whatever happens after that is out of my hands. I think I've finally come to terms with that (thanks tim0 -- although I'm currently sitting next to him while he is grinding 5/10 online and he is a little annoyed lol.)

I started off today at 151k, got up to 271k early... then lost a 110k flip and hovered between 220-180 for a couple hours. Towards the end of the night I won a couple nice pots and finished with 286k. Hopefully I can find myself in some good/easy spots tomorrow and things go my way.

After we finished playing, I headed home and then got dressed to go to the gym. I lifted weights, played basketball, and ran a little bit. I feel really good and I can't wait to go to sleep. My laundry is finishing up right now and my head will hit the pillow shortly after that. It's already later than I wanted to stay up but I want to keep this updated. I'll be updating my twitter like usual if you want to follow my progress. Wish me luck for tomorrow. Goodnight.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Made Day 3...

It's about 3:30am. I'm pretty tired. My body is drained. My back is sore and my legs are stiff. Who knew playing poker could be so tough? Sitting down for so long takes it toll and I have to remember to get up every now and then, stretch, and get my blood pumping. If you're wondering why I'm exhausted it is because I played Day 2 of the World Series of Poker Main Event today. I survived and will play Day 3 on Monday.

I started the day with one of the bigger stacks in the room, 121k. Things didn't go my way early. A couple hours into the day I was down to 55k. I managed to grind back and finish the day strong with 151k. The average stack is probably ~90k. There are still a lot of players left in the field. We merge all of the starting days on Monday and come together for the start of Day 3. I'm glad I survived the first two days, but come Monday there is a week long grind of poker ahead of me. There won't be anymore days off in between playing. I have to be physically and mentally prepared for what is about to take place.

I've gotten deep in the Main Event before. A couple years ago I finished 163rd out of 6400 players. I think I busted halfway through Day 5. I wasn't ready then. I might not be ready now. I feel like I'm ready at this point, but only time will tell. Every year I improve dramatically, so I'm sure down the road I will reflect and say "I wasn't as good back then as I am now." With that said... I like where I'm at right now. I will just leave it at that.

My table had a lot of tough players at it today. Hopefully my table draw for Day 3 will be softer. I'm going to have to hold back on talking about hands that took place. I might play with some of the same players later in the tournament and I don't want to give away too much information. There have definitely been some insane pots so far.

On a side note.. Lebron is going to the HEAT! I'm super happy about this. I have been a Heat fan since I was a kid. I've lived in South Florida my whole life. I used to go to the Heat games all the time with my dad when I was younger, so I'm going to have to repay the favor and get some tickets this year. I tried to get season tickets but it appears they might have sold out. Hopefully I can make it to some of the games. I think South Florida/Miami is just going to be ridiculous now. Poker is legalized, Lebron James plays for the Heat, South Beach, great weather, it is just shaping up real nice down there. I'm happy to be in Vegas but I'm excited to head back to Florida and get the ball rolling there.

Tomorrow I'm going to relax. I will probably play basketball, workout, run some errands, and maybe get a massage or something. It's nice having days off from a tournament but I've become spoiled. It will be a grueling tournament if I survive from Monday to Saturday, but I hope that's a struggle I have a chance to go through. If you want to follow my progress check out my twitter page ( Goodnight.

Picture from Day 2B.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Good Start...

Sorry for the lack of updates. Time just flies when you're playing tournaments all day. I haven't spent much time on the computer either, which has been typical this summer. Since my last blog I have played a couple more tournaments with no cashes. I went deep in a few but nothing exciting happened.

I played Day 1B of the $10k World Series of Poker Main Event yesterday. I finished with 121k in chips. I am 20th in chips for all Day 1B players. When all the Day 1's are finished I imagine I will be in the top 100-150 in chips. It doesn't mean anything at this point, but it is a good start. I had a good starting table. I didn't recognize anyone and most of the players seemed like they were amateur players. We were missing a player in the 6 seat. I was sitting in the 7 seat. The ESPN cameras were circulating around all table for the first two levels. We were then notified that someone special was coming to sit next to me. Along came........ Phil Laak.

Phil sat and we chatted it up through the day. He's a nice guy. Definitely unique to say the least. He's really smart and fun to talk with though. He gets you thinking, that's for sure. I played one enormous pot against Phil where we got it in my 99 vs his 45cc on a 9d45d board for 118k pot at 200/400/50a. He actually predicted the 5c being a bad card for him hours before lol. Crazy.

Another insane pot I played was at the 100/200 level. I don't want to give too many details about the hand, but it was three way action on the flop of JcJsTc and I had KcQd. Me and another player were heads up to the turn, which was the 6h. The river was the Qh and I had to call all in on the river. I tank called and my opponent showed 99 and I won the pot and doubled to 58k. I'll talk more about it after the tournament.

Overall my table was good but there were some tricky opponents and I had to switch gears a couple of times. Luckily a couple things went my way and I am where I'm at. I have a couple days off and don't play again until Saturday. I'm just going to relax and hang out. I will probably play basketball a couple times and hang out with friends. The Main Event is a long grind and I am prepared for another deep run. I'm pretty happy with how I've been playing. I've had a good summer overall, poker included, and I'm going to do my best to get deep in the main. Only time will tell.

ESPN took a lot of footage of our table. Phil Laak was involved in some pretty big pots, including the one with me. A couple of people have asked me why I've never been on TV or "Are you going to be on TV?" Maybe I will make an appearance if they air the footage. That is the last of my concerns but just something interesting to bring up about my day yesterday. I just want to do my best and have a shot to win. If I have anything else to blog about before I play Day 2 I will. Until then... wish me luck.

Here's a picture from yesterday towards the end of the day.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Another Bubble...

I bubbled the $1500 NLH event the night after I lost Heads up to advance to the "final table" of the $1500 shootout. I actually lost on the last hand of the night. Let me explain how that tournament went.

I had a tough starting table with BelowAbove and SloppyKlod. I chipped up early and got moved to a different table which was full of amateur players. I stayed at this table for a couple hours and increased my stack to about 40k. I was one of the big stacks in the tournament. That table then broke and I was moved to the table I would finish Day 1 on. It was a tougher table, but still I could manage. I chipped up to about 50k at 400/800/100a. We only had to finish this level and the 500/1k/100a level and the night would be over. I opened to 2100 on the button with QTo. The small blind defended. He had been playing pretty solid but was a little loose preflop. The flop came JT6 rainbow. He led for 2700, I raised to 6900, and he moved all in for 24.2k more. I went into the tank. Some people say you should always have a plan for a hand, and I do a lot of times, but just because you have a plan doesn't mean it always works out. In this hand I raised the flop for multiple reasons and he still moved all in. I took a couple minutes to think through his range and then I told him "What else can you have here besides 89 or KQ?" It was still a big decision. 24k was a lot of chips at this stage and would hurt my stack. My instincts were screaming at me to call and I eventually made the call. He said "Good call..." and turned over 89o. I proudly turned over my QTo (also knew my Q was blockers vs 89 and QK) and now had to sweat 7 outs on the turn and river for a 70k pot. The turn was the 7h and I was now drawing dead. He won the pot and I was down to about 20k now.

I won a couple small pots and chipped back up to 35k. At about 32k Brenard Lee shoved the button for 11k and I called with KJo in the big blind. I'm not sure about my call here. We were about 15 minutes away from ending the night, I thought he would shove lighter, which is probably not the case. Anyways, I ran into the top of his range which was AA lol... I lost that pot. They announced 4 hands left in the night. The remaining entrants read 297 with 270 getting paid. On the last hand of the night I was dealt 99 with 5 people left to act behind me. I brain-farted and decided jamming my 20bb stack was a good idea. It is probably a profitable shove, but it is not the right play in this case. One guy reshoved behind me with QQ, JJ folded, and AA snap called in the small blind. I lost this hand as well and really regretted how I played it. It was awful. I then found out the next day that there were 277 remaining players going into day 2. If I knew I was 7 out of the money I would have never shoved either because I think that changes the dynamics for the table/tournament. Oh well.

After those two rough back to back nights I decided to take the next two days off. I wish I didn't take off any days. I should be a well oiled machine. I shouldn't let the results effect me. With that said, I still need to live a balanced lifestyle. Hopefully the days off will help me out for the last stretch of the WSOP. I've had a good series so far. I've had 3 cashes with a final table bubble. I've also had like 2-3 other tournament bubbles, which I'm not proud of. I'm getting to the end or putting myself in a situation to have a chance. If I can continue to do this I will eventually be in a position to win a tournament. Tomorrow is a new day with the $1k WSOP NLH event.

Also one last thing, for anyone who is going to be in Vegas July 2nd-4th Deepstacks is having a whole VIP experience/poker coaching session at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. Check that out here.. if you have any questions e-mail Buff (link at bottom) Goodnight.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

One Word...Wow...

Wow. Wow. Wow. I played my heart out today. I eventually got heads up at the second shootout table vs a random player. I definitely had the edge in heads up play. At 2k/4k he shoved ~80k with KJhh and I called with AKo and he turned a jack to double up. I then chipped him back down, got it in A6 vs 33 and lost that as well (2326A.) I butchered one hand real bad heads up and doubled him up. No biggie. We were about even going into 3k/6k. I chipped him down to 120k to my 330k and at 5k/10k got him all in with 57cc vs ATo. The board came 75463 and although I flopped two pair it went runner runner chop. He then shoved for 80k and I called with K7hh in the big blind. He had KJss. It came K79sQs2s. I thought I won lol. I didn't see that he had hit the flush. After that hand got it in QJo vs A3 it came T87xx and I bricked that as well. He now had the lead in chips. I had 130k he had 320k. I jammed 89cc and he called with QTo. It ran out A92AT and I was eliminated from the tournament.

I am the 15th place finisher. There were 14 people who were going to play tomorrow for a bracelet and I was the last loser. To say I am disappointed is an understatement. I've been real deep in a lot of big tournaments, online and live, and this was the hardest one for me to take. I absolutely played the best I could and I still wasn't able to win. It is definitely frustrating but it is also part of poker. I have to come to terms with that even if it's hard to see how I've gotten so close for so long without it happening. I'm sure I'm not the only one who feels this way. It's a sick game we play. I really would have liked my chances tomorrow, playing shorthanded to start until we reached the final table. I think that would have given me a bigger edge in the tournament. This is the closest I have come to winning a bracelet.

What can I do? Well I registered for tomorrows $1500 NLH event. That is a start. I have to go to sleep and forget about tonight. My buddy Tim0thee is really good at disconnecting himself from the results of tournaments/hands. He plays a hand or a tournament and doesn't worry about the outcome. I feel like I want it so bad that it's hard for me to be exactly like that. I still have to control myself better and realize that no tournament is over until it's over. I still have a lot to learn, but I'm learning. Tournaments don't normally bother me, especially if I play well and do everything possible... but getting so close to a bracelet and losing heads up is beyond annoying.

Today was one of the most grueling days of poker I've ever played. I'm not sure why it was like that. I guess because it was a good structured shootout and there was a lot of thinking involved on my end lol. We played short handed for a long time as well as heads up for a couple of hours. I don't know what else to say. I did my best, I still made some mistakes that there are no excuses for (one hand in general) and I'm really happy with how my game is progressing. Hopefully that big final table is coming soon and maybe a big win can come along with that as well. Sorry if this sounds like I'm complaining or whining. I am just typing what happened with my day and the tournament. That's it for now... thanks for the support everyone. I wish I made Day 3 but that is in the past. Goodnight (I'm essentially the final table bubbler if this was a real 3x shootout lol... I would have killed the final 14!!!) Okay time to sleep and shut my brain off for a couple of hours.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Third Cash in WSOP...

Sorry for the lack of updates. I've had some long days playing poker and just don't get around to getting on the Internet. My housemate JD got 2nd in the $1k I finished 116th in! He won $310k. Congrats to him first and foremost! It was fun sweating him and watching the final table. Unfortunately he didn't win but he did great and played awesome. My other housemate Tim0thee has been deep in a couple tournaments also. He cashed in the $10k HU most recently. I watched a lot of his matches and he played really good. I could tell he couldn't get anything going in his last match and wasn't making many hands. It's tough to win at heads up if you're not making hands. He eventually got it in A6hh vs 84o on a 825hh board, turned the Ad and his opponent re-sucked the river with a 4d. He would have been even in chips again and been back in the running. It was a good performance either way.

Let's see.. I played the $5k 6-max WSOP event. It didn't go so well, although I played my best. I lost two monster pots. One with AJo vs 73dd on a J243dd board all in on the turn and lost. Then at 200/400/50a I was moved to a new table with Erick Lindgren. He opened the first hand UTG and I flatted JJ in the big blind. We got it in on a 365 board and Lindgren turned over 44. The turn was an 8 and the river was the 2 giving Lindgren the straight. That pot was about 100bbs, killed my momentum, and put me at about 50bbs. I couldn't get anything going after that. At 400/800/100a a shortstack shoved UTG at a new table for 10k, I reshoved A9cc on the button for 16k and the small blind woke up with AQo and called. UTG had K8hh and the board ran out Q9xxA...and AQ won it all. It was a frustrating tournament since I got fairly deep and did all I could. I wanted to do better in that tournament.

I've played a couple other WSOP in the last week as well ($1500 NLH, $1k NLH.) Today I played the $1500 NLH shootout. My table had a couple soft spots but I had two good players to my left. Adam Junglen and Jon "Apestyles" Van Fleet. Luckily they both busted pretty early. I doubled up quickly and had a couple other nice spots/pots and was chip leader at 5 handed play. I eventually got 3 handed. I got all the money in with AKo vs A9 on an A882 board for a 23k pot to have 33k of the total 45k in play. The river came a 9 and I got 3 outted for a monster pot. I battled back and eventually made it to heads up with the player I wanted to play heads up. The guy who got knocked out in 3rd was very aggressive and might have been a tougher HU opponent. I grinded the guy down, then we got back to even, and I eventually got it all in my AAs vs his 9sTd on a T54sss flop. I held and won the match. 140 players come back and play tomorrow. If I win my table tomorrow I will be in the final 14. We will then play two 7 handed tables and the rest of the tournament will play out like a normal MTT. Wish me luck!

Everything else aside from poker has been going well. I've been working out, playing basketball, hanging out with some friends and enjoying the summer. My main focus is poker but I'm still trying to stay balanced. Everyone in the house I'm staying at is cool and we all get along with each other. It's been fun and I'm glad I decided to stay in a house with some friends this year. I'll be updating my twitter tomorrow. Goodnight.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Busted 116th out of 3300...

I had another deep run in a WSOP $1k/$1500 event. I've gotten 25th, 33rd and now 116th in huge fields at the WSOP. In 2007, 2009, and now 2010. This tournament went well for me. I was talking to my roommate and I realized that on Day 1 I only lost one showdown all day. I doubt I got to showdown more than 5-7 times throughout day one. I also didn't see aces the whole tournament. That doesn't really matter but I think it can definitely factor in at some point. I never woke up with a hand when a player was all in today. I battled hard and eventually moved all in for 34k at 1500/3000/400a in 2nd position with ATcc. The guy in 4th position tank called with 99 and I lost the race which would have put me at about 80k and in awesome shape.

I'm really happy with how I'm playing NLH tournaments. Hopefully I can run well and win the big flips when they matter/get some coolers/etc. I've still made some mistakes but luckily they have been small ones and haven't cost me my tournament. I am going to skip tomorrows $2500 PLO event. I didn't like how they did the $1500 event so I'm just not going to play it. If it was 6 handed I definitely would play. I will play again on Wednesday in the $1500 NLH WSOP event.

Tomorrow I will probably just hang out and relax by the pool, workout, and find a place to watch the Lakers vs Celtics game. I'm hoping the Lakers win. I made a small bet with a friend on the series. I typically NEVER bet sports or anything like that but a small bet doesn't hurt. With that said, GO Lakers! I think they can come back and win it with their next two games being at home and the fact that they haven't played that great lately. We will see. All is well aside from poker and everything else. Nothing is new. I'm on the hunt for a bracelet and I want to get closer than I have been. It will be nice to have a shot at it and I will do my best in the remaining tournaments. I'll keep everyone updated. Goodnight.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Into Day 2 $1k WSOP...

Going into Day 2 of the $1k WSOP. I'm good on chips sitting on about 33k which is 77/503 I believe. We have 70 more knockouts until we make the money. I will update my Twitter on breaks (My Twitter - I will update blog later after I make it through day 2. Wish me luck!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Couple Deep Runs...

Well I called my shot, kinda. I made a deep run in the $1500 6max event. There were around 1700 entrants and I finished in 82nd place for about $4000. I lost a huge flip for 150k pot at 600/1200 (my QhQs vs AKcc came A98sss and I bricked) and grinded back from it. I'm not happy with how I played the hand that I busted out on. In the moment I felt like I was making the right decision but looking back on it I don't like what I did. It happens. The whole tournament was a lot of fun and a good experience. My buddy, Matt Waxman, was at my Day 1 table for over 3 hours until we ended for the night. That was a lot of fun and a pretty crazy time lol. We were the loudest table in the room I'm sure.

Since I made a deep run in the 6max I missed out on the $5k NLH. That tournament would have been great. I know the field would have been tougher than a normal WSOP NLH tournament but I enjoy playing against good players. On Wednesday I played the Venetian $1600. I made a deep run and busted 10 minutes before we finished play for the night and about 30-40 out of the money. I lost a huge flip AQ vs 99 in a great spot for me, then lost 88 vs a shortstacks JJ and AQ vs JJ. I was happy with my overall play.

Yesterday I played the $1500 PLO tournament. It was a weird structure. Instead of starting us with 4500 in chips like they usually do, we started with 1500 chips and three rebuy chips for 1k each. They could be used at anytime when you weren't in a hand. I opted to take all of them at the beginning so I could start with the 4500 stack. I mixed it up, lost a flip to Charder for a decent sized pot, and then got my money in with the best hand at the time... but my equity was only 30% lol. I turned top set when my opponent hit his flush draw and now had a 22% chance to win which whiffed and I was out the door.

Tomorrow is another $1k WSOP event at noon. Hopefully I can make another deep run and have a better sweat. I'd really like to make a final table and ultimately win a bracelet. I know everyone else feels the same way, but someones gotta win.

Aside from poker I went to the Palms pool party for "Ditch Fridays" today. It was packed and there was overcast weather. It wasn't ideal for the pool and kind of put a bummer on the afternoon. I wanted to get some sun and work on my tan... grinding online poker can really brighten your skin color lol.

I haven't been on the computer much. I was hoping to update the blog earlier but I have been pretty busy grinding these tournaments. I don't want to miss an opportunity in any of these events. That's all for now. Goodnight.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Still 0-fer...

I've played a couple more events since the last post and I still have no cashes. The Venetian poker tournament got a decent turnout but I busted fairly early. The WSOP events have been good but I haven't been able to get it going deep and win those crucial pots. There are still plenty of events so I am not even worried about it.

The next event I will play is the $1500 6max and I'm really looking forward to this event. I LOVE 6max. I know a lot of poker players feel the same way. It should be an awesome tournament and I am excited to play it. It will also be fun to switch it up from the same old 9-10 handed NLH tournaments. After that there is a $5k NLH on Tuesday but I'll hopefully still be in the 6max and will have to miss that one. We'll just see how things turn out when I play on Monday. I'm not sure what I am doing tomorrow. I might play online for all the big Sunday tournaments. I'll see how I feel.

Other than that things have been pretty quiet. It was my roommates birthday the other night and we went to dinner. I've worked out a couple times and explored Vegas a bit. I also watched the Lakers vs Celtics game. I think the Lakers will win the championship fairly easily. The Celtics didn't look too good in game one but they are still a tough team. I just don't see them being able to compete with the Lakers. It's getting super hot here now. Maybe if I have some time off I will hit the pools or do something fun. All I'm really focused on is poker right now, and that's how it should be. I will leave it at that. This is a pretty boring post lol... maybe I will have something interesting to say next blog.

Monday, May 31, 2010

Long Poker Days...

I've had a couple long poker days. It's not tough to play for hours on end but playing everyday and focusing so much attention on poker can be tough. It started with the $1k WSOP event. I made it through the dinner break and busted with a couple hours left in play. I got it in for about 35bbs with AKs vs KK. The guy who had KK was pretty loose and it was definitely just a cooler spot. I actually got in another cooler pot against him before that one and doubled him up. I played my best and only feel like I misplayed one hand the whole day.

Yesterday I played online and made a couple deep runs. I managed to finish 14th in the Sunday 500. I've made it to the final two tables in this tournament now FIVE times with only one final table. That's a pretty crazy statistic. That is also how tournament poker goes. You hope that when you get deep in a big tournament you can take it down. Two guys who are in the house I'm living in for the summer also made deep runs in big tournaments. Brad chopped the 100r turbo for about 30k and Tim got 9th in the FTP 750k. He lost a 1.5m pot with like 16 left KK vs QQ after a 643 flop. That would have put him at 2.1m chips with second having 1.1m chips. He would have probably cruised to a good finish but eventually ran into aces to bust in 9th.

Today I played the $1500 WSOP event. Again, I feel like I played great. I knew where I was at in almost every pot and I was able to get a good grasp on everyone's game. I ran my stack up to 9k from 4500 starting stack, then lost a couple pots to go to 3500, got back up to 9k before dinner break and played a pretty crazy pot. There was one guy across the table from me who would limp probably 30% of hands and any suited/kind of connected hand. He limped for 300 at 150/300/25a with about a 30k stack (maybe more.) I raised with AJss on the button to 925. He called. The flop came 9s8c3d. He checked, I checked. The turn was the Ts and he bet 1100. I had 8200 behind and for a couple various reasons I decided to move all in instead of raise small/raise big or flat call. He tanked for a couple minutes and called me with 79cc for middle pair and the bottom end of the straight draw. I had 19 outs and bricked for a 20k pot. They were also breaking my table after that hand and I was sent on my way 20 minutes before dinner break.

Tomorrow I am going to play the Venetian 1k tournament. I'm hoping they have a decent field. It starts in about 10 hours and I have to get to sleep soon. A lot of my friends are doing well or have done well in the WSOP already. I'm sure it is because I know a lot of people but it is good to see some friends having early success/cashes. Tim is going into day 2 of the $1500 with a 60k stack so hopefully he can make a deep run. Check out my twitter if you want live updates. Goodnight.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Back In Vegas...

It really doesn't seem like it has been a year since I've been in Vegas. Time flew by and here I am again. I had a good time in Oklahoma and made it safe to Vegas.

I flew here with some of the DeepStacks crew and hung out with them on Sunday night. We went and checked out the new casino Aria. It is pretty impressive. I didn't get to see everything they had to offer but what I did see was very nice. The poker room is pretty neat and they have a room called "The Ivey Room." Apparently it is supposed to rival Bobby's Room at the Bellagio. Below is a picture of the Aria poker room. You can see the Ivey Room in the back.

On Monday I rented a car and was invited to Tom McEvoy's wedding. I attended the reception and it was awesome. He seemed really happy as did everyone else in the room. It was a fun reception and I had a great time. On Tuesday afternoon Tom was holding a $230 buyin tournament at Caesars to celebrate his marriage. There would be 10 pros with $1k bounties on their heads.

I woke up around 11am on Tuesday and found the nearest 24 hour fitness center. I worked out for about an hour, came back to the house, grabbed some lunch and headed to Caesars. There were about 180 players that decided to play in the tournament. I got off to a quick start and slowly built my stack up. The blind levels were 20 minutes long and we started with 4k in chips so the tournament would be over pretty quickly. My first table broke and I had a healthy 12k stack when the average was probably around 7-8k.

I was moved to a table that had a pro bounty, Kathy Liebert. The very first hand I had to post the big blind of 400. It folded to Kathy on the cutoff and she made it 1200. The action got to me and I looked down at J4ss. She had roughly 2k behind and this was a very easy shove on my part. Tom was watching and I told him "This won't be pretty." I obviously wanted her to call with any two cards. She obliged and called with A9o. The board ran out J94Jx and I won the pot and collected her $1k bounty.

I won and lost a couple pots/races and found myself down to 12k at 400/800/100a. About thirty minutes after being at the new table they filled Kathy's old seat with Mike Matusow. There was only one problem, he had everyone at the table covered. A woman I had played with all day limped for 800 to my right and I shoved KJss in mid position for about 12k. Mike called in the small blind with AQo. I lost the hand and Mike started berating me "I busted the Internet kid! These Internet donkeys suck!" Haha... he was just having fun with me, no harm done.

After the poker tournament I went to the Palazzo with Chris and Buff (From DeepStacks.) We went to Lagasse's Stadium. It's a sick sports bar with stadium seating in front of a huge TV screen as well as lounge seating all over the place. It was packed because the Suns were playing the Lakers and we had to sit outside. We found a table/couch next to a TV and ordered a great lunch. The food was really good there and I will definitely be going back to watch some sporting events there. Most of their seating appeared to be couches and comfortable chairs. Let me find a picture...

That's the area we didn't get to sit in but the seating is like that all over the place. It's different and fun to sit and relax while watching a game. I don't think that picture does the place justice.

Today I got some things done around the house and went over to Dan O' Brien/some other's house. Their house is definitely sick. Their setup in their living room with desks, computers, and a big TV is perfect. The whole house was very nice. I watched Jason Mercier play some 400-800 8game and then me and Dan played ping pong. The matches were pretty good and we ended 2-2. We ate some Chipotle and then I participated in the INSANITY workout with Dan and his two roommates. That workout is tough, especially after eating a chicken burrito from Chipotle lol. I managed to get through it and got my workout in for the day.

I'm still getting settled into the house. Brad (Smerks) will be coming tomorrow and then Tim (Tim0thee) and others will be getting here Friday. I will be playing the $1k WSOP event on Saturday. I'm looking forward to it. Goodnight.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Live From Oklahoma...

Hello world. I'm in the middle of nowhere, which happens to be in the middle of the United States. The location is Quapaw Oklahoma at the DownStream casino. I got here Friday night for a Deepstacks one day camp. I flew into Tulsa and then I had about an hour and a half drive to the casino here. It's a pretty nice casino and I have enjoyed the trip so far.

On Friday night I ate dinner at the casino's Steakhouse. It was absolutely incredible. The chef is a 6'2 380lb beast and he knows exactly what he is doing. There was about ten of us at the dinner including Mike Matusow, a couple of people from DeepStacks, a few people who run the casino and some regular poker players here. It was an excellent dinner and a great time. After that Mike, Chris (DeepStacks CEO), and I went and played some 5/10 Holdem/PLO. It was a great game and I had a lot of fun.

Today I taught with Mike for a couple hours. It was a one day course so it wasn't too time consuming. I then relaxed for about an hour and ate at the Steakhouse again. Yes, it is that good. After another delicious dinner I played some 5/10 Holdem/PLO and here I am now. It's pretty late. It's almost 5 in the morning. It's the first time I've been on the Internet since Thursday night so I have been wrapped up in things for the last couple of hours.

Tomorrow I am going to Vegas. I'm really excited. I'm expecting something great from myself this WSOP. I'm going to do my best and hopefully things will work out. If I play my best at all times I won't care about my results. With that said, If I am playing my best at all times I can't imagine not doing well. I will be staying in a house with a couple of my Canadian poker playing friends (Tim0thee, Smerks and some guys they know.) I will have a couple days to relax, get settled into Vegas and prepare for the next couple of weeks. I should be blogging and twittering frequently.

A couple days ago I did the free coaching session I had talked about earlier in the year. Sorry for those who didn't get to check it out. I did it on UStream and probably had about 20-30 viewers. I reviewed a hand history of mine and talked about Super Turbo Tournament strategy. I think everyone enjoyed it and it was pretty simple. Coin flip, shove, fold... not rocket science, but still informative. I will probably do some more UStream things in the future but I am not sure exactly how much "coaching" or giving away free knowledge I will do. Probably not much, but I can figure out something that will be fun.

I also Made bluffmagazine's top tweet list three weeks in a row! My best poker accomplishment yet. BLUFF's Poker Tweets of The Week. Maybe I am mildly entertaining, I am not sure lol. I gotta head to bed. I'll get back in the rhythm of blogging soon. Goodnight.