The Grind

Stephen's Poker Blog

  1. 2008-03-11 16:49:32

    The Wynn Classic $500/$40 NLHE 3 day Tournament - Part 1

    Well, as I've mentioned before, I'm not much of a tournament guy. The reason is partly because the luck/variance factor is higher, and also because I got my start in cash games and feel more comfortable there. I love the freedom of deep stacks and being able to reload at any time. ahhh.... the purity of the cash game. But anyways, the Wynn has been running it's yearly Wynn Classic tourneys, and they actually have some decent structures for the smaller buy-ins. Our poker friend Dan was in town so all 3 of us (Jeff, Dan, and myself) decided to enter the $500 event.

    We were only given 80 big blinds to start, but the rounds were 45 minutes long and blind increases were very reasonable. Another appealing aspect of this event was the prize pool. It was huge. They had to split the initial field into two day-ones. They would play down to 10% and then combine the fields to play it out on day 3. The total was just shy of 700 entrants. 1st place could expect a prize over 100k. That's a pretty sweet purse for a $500 event. You had to make top 5 to break 10k, but whatever. It seemed like a fun idea. If nothing else it was a good way to mix up the steady grinder's routine. Also, we got a $20 meal comp with entry. Heh, woo.

    As is normal toward the beginning of a Multi-Table Tournament (MTT), I wasn't very active. In fact a few hours went by before I even showed a hand down. People either folded pots over to me, or I just stole the blinds and maybe a limper or two. But this was enough to adequately increase my stack and kept me ahead of the blind increases and the average stack.

    A few rounds later I looked over to see Jeff had busted out. It was the standard overpair vs a flopped set. Such is poker. Soon after I managed to win a coin flip against a shorter stack. Then I flopped a set that held up against one of the chip leaders, and he doubled me up with his pair and straight draw. He started spewing chips and in another revolution he was busted. All of a sudden I was in a good spot. I was well above the average stack. I made it through the dinner break and so did Dan, though he was on a shorter stack. There were only 50 something of us left and we were playing down to 36 which was about 10% of that day's entrants. Since the second day-one would most likely have close to as many entrants as my day-one, I was very very likely to be in the money just by finishing out the day. This was a first for me. I'd never gone deep in any decent MTT. Though I've only played a handful of them.

    Shortly after dinner Dan lost a coin flip for his stack. Now it was just me. Then came a relatively scary hand when I flat called a known bluffer's late position raise from my BB with . He'd been stealing the blinds a lot from the button and cut off. I could have gone for a reraise to resteal, but then I pretty much just turn my hand into a bluff and fold out the hands that I'm beating already. I didn't really want to play a big pot with this hand in a tourney, so I decided to "small ball" it Phil Hellmuth style. I flopped top pair with my . I opted to just check call to get value from a bluff. The only problem with that is I have no way to define my hand, and a better A obviously has me crushed. So he bet the flop and I called. I checked again and he bet again. I just called. The turn had paired a low card on the board and the river was a putting 3 hearts out there. So now I'm splitting with any A that I was previously beating. Also if he was betting the flush draw he just got there. The only thing I had going for me now was my read of his demeanor. I like to think I've gotten pretty good at this. I've made some pretty sick calls and bluffs based solely on my read of my opponents' body language. When the chips go in for this reason I'm almost always right. I felt like he was weak, but he didn't speak much English so I was worried about misinterpreting the situation. I checked once more. He shrugged and put me all in for about a pot bet. I tried to ask him questions in an attempt to get a better read, but he couldn't understand most of what I was saying. But there was really no way I could fold at this point. I called and he said, "You win" and flipped up for a complete bluff. Then the very next hand I picked up and called the now short stacked bluffer's all in. He had a smaller pair and my hand held up.

    A few hands went by, I stole a few blinds and had to fold one of my raises to a shove. Then the next thing I knew we were done for the day. When the stacks were counted I was second in chips! I was certainly happy with that. Despite my large stack, I still only had an M of about 20 (M is a tournament term for the number of revolutions you can survive around the table before your stack is eaten by the blinds and antes). But such is often the situation in freakin' tourneys. ;) Anyways, that concludes day one. I don't feel like making this any longer, so you'll have to tune in next time for the rest. And all of you who know what happened just keep your mouths shut. :p

    Posted by uzjedi at 2008-03-11 16:49:32

Comments on “The Wynn Classic $500/$40 NLHE 3 day Tournament - Part 1”

    • avatar for Jason M
    • Kyle, it's already there. Just go to his blog home and check out his posts.

    • avatar for FREMONTkyle
    • when is soon?

    • avatar for uzjedi
    • I don't get 1st! OK!!! HA! ;)

      I will make my other post soon.

    • avatar for Jason M
    • I know what happened!

    • avatar for Graham
    • Don't leave us hangin' man! I know the results are on-line somewhere...

    • avatar for Nick L
    • Great post congrats on your day 1 showing, I will be looking forward to see how the rest goes.

    • avatar for Jason M
    • This sounded better than how you described it to me earlier :) Nice call, mang! I'd really like to play in something like that. Fun!

    • anonymous
    • The structure of MTT looks better than many tournaments. I guess 45 minute rounds live is like 10 minute online which is still decent.

      Nice job picking off the bluff.
      I am really curious about day 2.
      Please post it asap.
      I hope you cashed (BIG).