While complete, I can't help but think the tournament write-up I offered last night was a little difficult to read. Perhaps it would be good to look at a few key hands, and a few observations.
Observation #1-- Is it coincidence, fate, or something more supernatural that put Mene Gene and me into heads up play? He won the first WPBT event. I won the second. I hesitate to believe skill could have anything to do with it, but whatta I know?
Obervation #2-- I have accurately been accused of sitting heartily on a horseshoe all night long. There's no doubt that is correct. I got some great cards and hit a few great boards. We'll discuss that more in the Key Hands section. However, I wonder how many tournaments are won when the winner didn't have great cards and hit a few key flops. I'm sure there are some, but I bet the numbers work in favor of the people who keep a collection of horseshoes in their pants. I'd be interested to hear what The Dude would have to say about that.
Observation #3-- Badblood, who served as chip leader for most of the tournament kept making references to the state I call home. Later we discovered that we not only live in the same state, but the same city. We're currently investigating whether we have ever played together before.
Now, the key hands.
I bled off half my chips in the first two levels, weakly betting small and middle pairs. I had already resigned myself to the fact that I was playing too weakly to win. I was trying to figure out how I could muster up the pride to walk away with my head up.
Then I looked down and saw:
Key Hand #1: I had 44 on the button. I'd spent about five minutes trying to figure out the best place to put the pop-up chat bar (one of my least favorite things about Pacific Poker). I thought everyone had folded around to me. I raised, hoping to steal right then, or at least after the flop. Turned out PDooley was hiding under the chat box. That's an interesting strategy. Hide under my chat box. An ace hit on the flop and I got weak in the knees. I checked and hdouble said, "Go get him, Otis." PDooley bet out. I only had one choice. Raise. CJ said, "I've seen that move before." PDooley folded and I'm back in the game.
It got better a few hands later when HotLead called me all the way down to the river. I had top pair with a K kicker. It held up and I started feeling more confident. That is, until I ran into Hdouble.
Key Hands #2 and #3: Hdouble raised, but I had position on him. I re-raised with AK. The flop was Q high and obviously didn't pair anything for me. I can't remember how we bet, but I know Hdouble came over the top of me and typed in "F*** your AK." I congratulated him on a great read, then called him a bully. He claimed AQ. Had it not been for that hand, I think the next hand might not have been as profitable. American Airlines. Hdouble raised with TT and I came back over the top and he eventually doubled me up. In his defense, the flop was only nine-high. he probably thought I was steaming, stealing, or not backing down after folding my big slick in the previous hand. Still, it started me on my run to glory.
Key Hand #4: The details are sketchy, but two players are all-in before it gets to me and my QQ. I called and took all their money.
Key Hand #5: This was terrible luck for Decker. I played A5hearts and the flop came 55A. Poor guy didn't have a chance. His money made me the chip leader.
Key Hand #6: This hand was actually a laydown. I folded 77 when Logan came over the top and went all-in. After some consideration, I laid down my wired pair. He said later that he had TT. I guess that was a decent laydown on my part. In retrospect, it should've been an easier decision than it was.
After calling an all-in bet from boy Genius with wired nines and losing to an ace he paired on the board, I was pretty sure I wasn't going to survive. However, the next hand put me back in the game. This was the horseshoe hand of the evening.
Key Hand#7: I push in pre-flop on a pair of jacks. Genius has an ace which he pairs on the flop, but I made my set on the river. As I typed in my instant tourney report, "Genius is nonplussed." Edit: This was worse for Boy Genius than I thought. No wonder he was mad. This is the way he put it:
A9s from the BB. Otis is first in and raises. Mean Gene and Bad Blood scoot. I push back all-in, hoping for a fold right there.
Otis is holding JJ. I don't know this at the time, and see the board come out beautifully for me:
I see my full house, I'm jumping up and down like Publisher's Clearing House just stopped by, and I see Otis raking the chips. Wha...? Dude had a two-outer at the end, but I must admit that I was definitely behind to begin with. If it wasn't for that flop and turn, I would have nothing to bitch about."
Key Hand #8: Badblood (a hometown hero...go figure) had AQ and ran into my pocket queens. After a helluva tourney, in which he maintained the chip lead for most of the levels, he got bounced on the bubble. Sorry, bud.
Key Hand #9: I'm heads up with Mene Gene and don't like my chances. Though I started with a 3:1 chip lead on him, he's been playing very well shorthanded. We battled back and forth for a while when I held J7 of spades in the big blind. The flop paired my seven and put two spades son the board (7c, Ks, 9s). I had bottom pair and the flush draw. I was hoping he'd fold right there, which he did, but not before a decent stack of chips was out there. Later he would say that's where he should've folded, too. He knew it. Still, the turn was of no help to me it at all. Another nine, a diamond. Still, I bet enough to put Gene all in. if he had a K or a nine, I was going to be hurting. Gene made the laydown and I was able to coast until...
Key Hand#10: Aces. Easy enough.
So, that's that. Hopefully that makes a little more sense than the instant write-up.