Off we go, with a tricky big stack to my left, and Ryan LaPlante to my right. A couple of short stacks also on the table, but for now we'll just see how it unfolds. I win a small early pot, and we are already on 48 players from a total of 342 starters. I'm on 280K at 500/2500/5000.
40 players left. 4 off the money. Ryan is running good and has busted a few players. Another O'Leary joins the table, safety in numbers. I'm on about 260K still, which is now average chips at 1K/3K6K.
Back down to 200K. Really interesting hand came up, which I can't go into detail about now. I'll explain later. 38 players remaining. Suffice to say I'm probably the only person in the room who would have done what I did.
On the bubble now, and I've sneaked back up to 245K again.
In the money. Took a fair bit of time. 250K. Everyone's guaranteed something, but I haven't to this point paid much attention to what it is, it diverts focus. Screen says $1,221, so at least we have our first cash of the trip. Let's try to run it up to something better. Still a long way to go.
One for all the experts out there. You're going to love this!
Now 27 players remain, and we've had a table redraw. Most of my starting table are on the new one, in the same seat order. Ryan is on my right again, which is perfect.
I've missed a bunch of flops and now my 210K is looking more like 100K. At 2K/6K/12K this isn't good, and a bunch of people will no doubt be saying that i should have taken my chances with the KK. I shouldn't, so let's move on.
I need to find a spot now, and Ah Qd when it's folded round looks like the one. In it goes. I jam, and the big blind decides that AK is a good call. With his stack he's probably right. Over we go, and I run out a flush with the Ah. It's nice to get lucky sometimes.
There are times I fold with big hands (we've covered that), and also there are times I shove with lesser, or even crappy ones. My defining moment just appeared when I look down at two red jacks. One player makes it 35K to go and a second player flats the 35. I now jam, and one calls with AK. My JJ holds and I'm up to 330K and healthy again. Maybe patience does pay off.
I limp with QQ. The table looks at me and I say "a lot of old guys do that". A bunch of people call the limp, then a 100K stack jams, and I repop it with my queens. A player behind me also calls with a short stack and when we go over it's A 10 and A 3 (yep) versus me.
I flop a queen to immediately ease the pressure, and bust one and cripple another. Now we have chips with which to play. 21 players left and average is 488K.
19 left, next break and I'm on just under 800K. Picking off small pots vs Ryan who is still stealing a lot, which doesn't concern me right now. As I said to someone earlier, my style of tournament poker is a bit like Patrick Swayze in Road House.
"Be nice. Until it's time to not be nice".
If that makes any sense.
We've been at 19 players for a very long time now. There's a small money jump from 19 to 18, but that really doesn't concern me. The game ebbs and flows, and I pretty much keep my stack around the 800K mark. This is all situational stuff now, where to a lot of people will smash out when they really shouldn't, and others will catapult up to a huge stack with dogshit hands. The trick in my book is to be aware of what's going on and then act accordingly.
830K for our hero with 16 players left. Average is 603K. Blinds 4K/12K/24K. Here we go......
13 players left. blinds 4K/12K/24K.
Level 25, blinds 5K/15K/30K and I've mostly avoided things since my last big confrontation. I gambled with two red Aces (must be nice) and found myself up against 6c 5c for about 200K. He flopped a flush draw, and then turned a five for more outs! Amazingly, I fade the world, and bust another one.
One guy on my new table is shall we say...a trifle Asperger's or something. He sits stoically behind mirrored shades, and whatever the decision when it's up to him, he always takes a minimum of 90 seconds to do anything, even if it's an obvious fold. The rest of the table is incredibly irritated by what seems an overly silly tactic, possibly designed to get people on tilt. It seems horribly inconsiderate, but who knows what goes on inside some people's heads. It doesn't affect me at all, and I don't complain about it. I Just let people do what they like however retarded it seems. Poker is full of weird people with weird habits, that's for sure. I'm just interested in trying to win the damn thing.
10 left. Final table. Guaranteed $2,940 and I have 950,000 chips, which is about the average stack. Let's do it.
Back from the break.
And out first hand in 10th.
I look down at Kc Ks under the gun. I limp as there is pretty much always a raise. This time no-one decides to raise, and the button and the blinds call, making a pot of around 110K.
Flop comes 9c 10c Jc. Good for me whatever anyone has unless they flopped the nut flush. WE check to the button, who bets 125K. The other two fold, and I jam for 900K. He dwells and looks like he doesn't like it. The asks for a count, and calls.
He turns over J9 offsuit, for top and bottom two pair. The pot is around 2 million to make me chip leader. I can make the Holy grail with the Qc for a straight flush. Failing that, a non pairing club, or a queen, or a King wins me the pot. Also a ten, or a running pair to make me Kings up. Despite how it looks, I'm actually almost a 60% favourite to win in this spot.
He immediately catches a 9 to make a full house, leaving me one out. I don't hit it.
That was that. 10th for $2,940. Not ideal but I don't mind playing a pot like that when I'm making the action, have pure nut outs, and I've put someone else to a what I think is a hard decision. Earlier I was very passive but this was the time to get busy, I got busy, and it didn't go my way. Simple as that. I'm already over it. Sorry to those who hoped for better things.
Onto the next one. Thanks for the messages and the sweat.