Saturday, July 29, 2006

Glenso Again

Glenso started the year with a Holdem Affair victory and he ended July with another.  Thirty-six players this week but Glenso was the cream that rose to the top.  Hazy Cat was the heads up foil.  TxBullet1961 posted her first money finish taking down the third place money.  Spideytwo took fourth and Von Ebb was fifth.  Except for TXBullet1961, those are some familiar names and very well known games.  Another excellent Holdem Affair final table.

Thirty-six started tonight and we were down to 24 by the first hour break.  That is a lot more action than usual.  Guess this field is getting more aggressive in the first hour.  Here is your leader board:
  1. lisa1433 = 7870

  2. Papoorboy = 3985

  3. spideytwo = 3810

  4. Hazy Cat = 3570

  5. brendasworld = 3285

  6. Glenso = 3200

  7. fisherfries = 2960

  8. von ebb = 2720

  9. Unionthug = 2350

  10. sajules = 2005

I see a couple of new names on that leader board.  That is great to see.  Welcome.

The final table came along fairly quickly as well.  This tournament was moving right along.  Is the action getting fiercer?  I think the waters must be hot on this summer’s night because the sharks were voracious.  Here is your final table.
  1. nicnac16 = 11110 (wow- you were in 17th less than an hour ago)

  2. Glenso = 9110

  3. TxBullet1961 = 8310

  4. Hazy Cat = 7250

  5. lisa1433 = 6985

  6. bugman22j = 2860

  7. spideytwo = 2725

  8. von ebb = 2010

  9. marti = 1870

  10. fisherfries = 1770

Half that table had to feel short stacked when the first hand was dealt but it was hand 17 before our first victim was sent off.  With the antes 25 and the blinds 150/300 – our hostess Marti (was that EvilMarti?) limp/re-raised Hazy Cat holding just Ah 5h. But this steal was doomed when our favorite mouser called with Ad 6s.  Wow – gutsy call.  But the board came up diamonds and Hazy Cat caught the flush.  Marti was gone.

The very next hand spideytwo opened all-in UTG and bugman22j called with Kc Qh.  Spidey had him covered and also turned over pocket sixes.  The flop gave him his set and our resident super hero sent bugman off to the showers.

Okay, the blinds are getting to people now and on hand 23 Fisherfries opened and got one caller in Glenso.  The flop came Tc Jd 7d, fisherfries threw out a minimum bet and Glenso raised.  FF didn’t heed the warning and called.  The turn brought the Qh hitting Fisherfries who was holding Kc Qs.  He went all-in but Glenso was happy to call.  He held 7h 7s and had flopped his set.  He had tried to warn Fisherfries but FF was sent to the fryer in eighth place.

The action continued to be very strong and by hand 32 Lisa1433 open pushed with her pocket sevens.  Hazy Cat made the call with As Qd and flopped the Qc.  That was it for Lisa.  Glenso was now in the chip lead with nicnac right behind him.

Nicnac was hit hard on hand 37 when her pocket tens ran into the pocket jacks of von ebb.  Von Ebb suddenly got healthy and Nicnac now was on the short stack.

Nicnac lasted until hand 46 when she pushed her As Jc on a 9c Kh Ac flop.  But TxBullet1961 turned over Ad Kc and that was the night for Nicnac16.  We were at the money table before we knew it with TxBullet holding a slight lead over Glenso.

Spideytwo was the short stack but took 5 of the next 8 hands to climb into the middle of the field.  He actually made it to second place by hand 66.

Hand 68 and von ebb had only 4715 chips with the antes 75 and the blinds 300/600.  He had to make a move soon and this was the time.  All-in holding Kh Th but TxBullet had Ac Qd and made the call.  The Qs joined the party on the flop and von ebb was gone in 5th place.  The field was pretty tight now spread between TxBullet with 16340 and Spideytwo with 10415.  It was anyone’s game at this point.

Hand 72 and Spideytwo was pushing hard with his Kd Qh but that darn Glenso wouldn’t go away.  And why should he when you can turn over Kc Ks? No miracles for Spidey this time and he settled for 4th place money.  Down to three and Glenso is putting some distance on the field.  

Hazy Cat reeled him in, though, by hand 79 and took a slight lead.  Glenso took it back on the very next hand.  It was going to be that kind of a battle.  Hand 83 and the mouser was back in charge.  During this TxBullet was falling back but trying hard to stay in the running.  

Glenso and Hazy Cat were going after each other on almost every hand, then lightening struck.  Hand 94 and the blinds were 400/800.  Glenso min-raised to 1600 and Hazy Cat re-raised to 5900.  Glenso said let’s get this over with when he pushed all of his chips to the middle and Hazy Cat was happy to oblige – he held pocket Jacks and was ready for a fight.  But Glenso had the goods – pocket Aces.  His rockets held up and basically the game was over on that hand.  Glenso now had 44930 chips, TxBullet 5365 and Hazy Cat 3705.

The mop up took six hands.  Hand 96 TxBullet1961 pushed with Qs 7s and both called.  They checked it down as the board ended up Kh Td 2d 9s Ac.  Hazy Cat held 6d 5d and had just missed his flush and straight draws, the board had danced around TxBullet but was no help to her.  Glenso turned over 7d 2h and chuckled as the pot went to him with the paired up deuces.

Hand 101 was the end and just shows how a heads up match can end.  They were all-in before the flop with Hazy Cat holding Ad Kd and Glenso the Ac 3h.  The 3s on the flop was the deciding card.  Glenso was our winner.

Excellent match to all of you.  I will be back in play next week so look out.



Saturday, July 22, 2006

Bossbenzino for the Win

Bossbenzino joined us for the first time tonight and showed he could play with the old-timers. Welcome to Holdem Affair, Bossbenzino and be proud of that victory. It isn’t easy with this crew. Unionthug was the heads up victim. Glenso took third place money, Burldog44 and Sunbob (yes, that’s me) completed the money table.

Thirty-nine sat down this week and we still had 28 at the first hour break. Here is your leaderboard:
Glenso = 7355
TxBullet1961 = 4910
lisa1433 = 3250
Takechances = 2960
Jennifear = 2785
Idblondee = 2615
jdro = 2600
LazerRic = 2565
Amkaos = 2275
Unionthug = 2225

It took about 50 minutes to get to the final table. I had been struggling and just barely holding my own until we got down to about 14. Then I went on a rush getting 3 pocket pairs in a row and hitting sets on two of them. I knocked out two people in that rush and when we went into the final table I was the chip leader. Here is how we stacked up.
Sunbob = 11775
Glenso = 9325
TxBullet1961 = 8875
Unionthug = 7135
burldog44 = 5600
Bossbenzino = 4410 (watch this now)
jdro = 3940
Papoorboy = 2780
Holland13 = 2470
Big Lar8 = 2190

Holland was the first to fall from the final table on hand 5 when he pushed Ad Jc against TxBullet1961 showing Ac 8d. The flop paired their aces and Holland was looking good. But the river 8d was the deciding card. Holland had to settle for 10th place.

The action was fast early this week and on hand 9, big lar8 was all-in with Ah Qs. Unionthug made the call with pocket nines and flopped the set. That was all it took to send Big Lar to the rail.

The very next hand Bossbenzino raised and jdro pushed holding Ac Qh. Bossbenzino had no problem making the call with big slick. The board flopped low and the King was the important card. Tough luck jdro.

We were down to seven now and all had solid stacks. That made for some tight and vicious play the next 18 hands. Finally TxBullet1961 had taken a hit and was fighting back when hand 28 came around. With the blinds 200/400 and Tx only had 2910 left after posting the small blind. She pushed her Kc Qs into a Glenso raised pot. Oops, not quite good enough – Glenso showed Ah Kh. The ace on the flop was all Glenso needed to send poor TxBullet1961 back to the reloading bench in 7th place.

It was bubble time – paying five tonight. Papoorboy was the bubble boy this time. Twice on the bubble he ran into Unionthug with a higher pair. The first time Papoorboy had JJ and thuggy KK. The second time Papoorboy turned over pocket tens only to have Unionthug produce pocket jacks.

Thirty-eight hands into the final table and we were in the money. Told you this was an active table. Unionthug (25970) was in the lead with Glenso (12370) in second. Bossbenzino, Sunbob and Burldog were holding up the rear all with pretty much equal low stacks. The blinds were now 300/600.

Over the next ten hands the field reeled in Unionthug like the a Tour De France peleton catching the break away. Hand 48 was big. Bossbenzino was all-in preflop with As Qd and Unionthug made the call. Sorry Thug but that Jc isn’t good enough company for your Ah. The board went low and then the Qs floated down the river just to rub it in. Folks we have a new chip leader. And we have ourselves a race.

Hand 50 and I blew a tire. With the blinds still 300/600 I opened for 2175 in the small blind. Bossbenzino re-raised the minimum to 3750. I misread the min-raise as weakness and pushed for all 10825. But boss wasn’t bluffing. He was trying to tell me he had pocket queens. I missed that road sign and crashed short of the finish line in fifth place.

Boss was now in charge at this table with over half the chips in play. The others started firing at him, trying to take him down. Burldog was the shortest stack and on hand 58 he was in the small blind and Boss was in the big blind. Ad 2h is good enough for a push when all folded to the dog. And Bossbenzino showed he wasn’t going to back down and made the call holding Qd 8d. At first this might look a little bit loose from Boss but his chip lead would let him make that call 6 times and he would still be in the game. It was suited and very possibly both cards were live. I like the call. And Boss was right. The flop came 7c 8c 5d and burldog44 was sent back to the kennel in 4th place.

Those three battled for the next 18 hands. Unionthug was doing everything he could to catch up. He was up – then he was down – then he was up again. Finally on hand 76, Unionthug opened and Glenso pushed pre-flop with pocket sevens. Thug had him covered and made the call – pocket eights. Bummer Glen. And we were heads up.

Glen’s stack added to Unionthug actually gave thuggy the lead going into heads up. But Boss took the lead back the very first hand – then Thug took it back the next hand. We were in for a war and everyone could see it. Finally Bossbenzino took the lead and managed to keep it for a few hands. The momentum was shifting. But, wait, - no Thuggy just won a big hand and we were back to even. Hand 97 and they are even. Hand 98 – Boss wins the blinds. Hand 99 Thug takes them back. Hand 100 – Boss takes a 7450 pot and a bit of a chip lead.

Hand 101. The blinds 600/1200 – Unionthug raises to 3850, Boss calls – the flop is 2d 3c Qc. Thug bets 7950 and Boss calls. Hmmm – this is getting interesting. The turn is the 5c. Unionthug says lets go for it and pushes his last 11805 - - - and Boss makes the call. What have we here?
Bossbenzino showed Ac 6s. Nut flush draw and a gut-shot straight draw.
Unionthug turned over Tc Td. He had been value betting those tens. Looking a little shakey there Boss. The river was a club and it didn’t give him a straight – but the Ad did give Bossbenzino top pair and his first Holdem Affair victory.

Congratulations to Bossbenzino and to Unionthug for a great heads up match.
And to everyone else – thank you.


Saturday, July 15, 2006

Burldog44 Claimed his Second HA Title

It was a good field this week. Thirty-three sat down to contest the Holdem Affair. Burldog44 came out on top this week with some excellent, and very patient, final table maneuvering. He waited for his opportunities and then took advantage of them. Lowe48, a newcomer to our little Saturday night party, was his heads up victim. Very good to have you with us Lowe. I hope you enjoyed it. I was the one Burldog chewed up to take the lead and finished in third place. Papoorboy was fourth and another newcomer, Amkaos, completed the money table. We had several new players this week and it was fun to see the new blood.

We were down to twenty-nine at the first hour break. Only lost four people. No wild play early in the Holdem Affair. Here is your leader board:
  1. slotcrazy45 = 4810

  2. burldog44 = 3630

  3. Annieboom = 3170

  4. Poker 101 = 3030

  5. Papoorboy = 2575

  6. RipleyBP = 2270

  7. lowe48 = 1885

  8. Hemi Henry = 1880

  9. Idblondee = 1755

  10. Medic Chicky = 1745

As you can see from the leader board, I had a tough first hour. Lowe44 wasn’t doing a whole lot better. But our fortunes changed in the second hour and by the time we got to the final table we were both looking good. Two hours and 5 minutes into the Holdem Affair the final table looked like this:
  1. Lowe48 = 10590

  2. Sunbob = 10225

  3. Burldog44 = 8995

  4. Papoorboy = 6810

  5. Amkaos = 3245

  6. Boomstick = 2380

  7. Mellow Yellow = 2310

  8. RipleyBP = 2245

  9. msrinny02 = 1725

  10. Hemi Henry = 975

In the first ten hands, Hemi Henry managed to double up and was in 8th place now. Hand 12 was the first interesting action. Mellow Yellow and Msrinny were both short stacked now and with the antes 50 and the blinds 200/400, they needed to double up. Burldog opened for 800, msrinny went all-in for 900, and Mellow Yellow pushed all of his 1335 into the middle as well. It was 535 for Burldog to call and he figured he was priced in.
burldog44 showed Ad Tc.
msrinny02 showed Kh Js.
Mellow Yellow showed 7h 8h – interesting play.
The flop came Qh 8s 3s and MY looked like a genius. The turn was the Ts and Burldog was looking good. But the river brought the 9h and Msrinny hit the straight. WOW. Mellow Yellow was our first casualty.

The very next hand and the action is getting hot. Five folds to Ripley and he opened for 1650. Two folds and Papoorboy re-raised to 2900, Ripley responded with a push and Papoorboy looked him up. Ripley showed Ah Ts. A good hand to make a stand but Papoorboy turned over As Jc. The Jh on the flop was the deciding card and RipleyBP had to settle for 9th place.

By hand 23, Hemi Henry’s fortunes had changed and he was all-in with his 125 chips. Burldog and Papoorboy both called and the flop came 8h 5c 4h. Burldog bet 600 telling Pa that he had Henry covered. Pa believed him and got out of the way. Henry showed Kc 6c and Burldog showed 6h 4c. Bottom pair puppy? Gutsy play. But that pair of fours held up and Hemi Henry was sent to the rail in 8th place.

Hand 27 and the antes are 75 and blinds 300/600. Three folds to me and I raised from the cut off to 1800. Rinny was in the small blind and pushed all 1850 into the middle. I had to make the call. I held Kc Jh and msrinny had me beat with Ad 8s. I caught the Jc on the flop and msrinny02 was invited to the lounge in 7th place.

Hand 33 and we are moving right along now. Boomstick is down to just 305 when he posted the big blind. I called the 600 OTB holding just Tc 5s. The small blind folded and I was up against Boomstick who showed 6s 5c. Amazing, I have him dominated. The board missed us both and I sent Boomstick off on the bubble.

We were paying five this week so we were all in the money. I was in the chip lead, Lowe48 was second and Amkaos was the short stack. We passed around the blinds until hand 40, when Amkaos was all-in posting the big blind and facing Sunbob, Lowe and Papoorboy. The flop came 3h Ah Qc – Papoorboy bet 3145 pushing Lowe and me out of the pot. Amkaos showed 9h 6s and Papoorboy turned over As Qd. Two pair – yep, pa, you have him covered. Amkaos settled for 5th place money. Not bad for this newcomer. Well done.

Papoorboy won the next hand and with it the chip lead, but gave it to Lowe two hands later when he chased a busted straight draw to the river and then got caught in a bluff.

The blinds where now 600/1200, so even stealing the blinds was a big deal. One busted steal attempt could yield a 10,000 pot. A good example of that occurred on hand 57. I raised UTG to 3000 holding Ac 8c. I had been stealing pots with some success but this time Burldog pushed in all 7880 of his short stack. I made the rather loose call. I knew just how loose when Burldog turned over As Qs. The flop came all diamonds and hit the puppy with the queen. That 16860 pot put Burldog in the chip lead and dropped me to 3rd place.

That was arguably the deciding hand this week. That darn dog is dangerous when he has chips. Two hands later he sent Papoorboy to the rail when he flopped a set of kings.

I mentioned earlier that I was stealing a lot of blinds but now I went at it in earnest. I stole 6 of the next 8 hands. I had been stealing Lowe’s blinds every chance I got through the whole final table and was waiting for him to push back. I was hoping to catch him in a loose call when I actually had a hand. That came on hand 69. I min-raised from the button with Ah Kh and Lowe called. The flop came Ac Ad 7s. Could this be my chance? Lowe bet 6375. Wow, could he have an ace? Could I be that lucky? I pushed all 11850 to the middle and since I had Lowe covered it was decision time. Lowe almost timed out then he typed “gg” in the chat box and called. He turned over 8c 3c. He had made a very good bluff. If I didn’t have an ace there was no way I could make that call. When he got caught he had given up. I had him . . . I thought. But the poker gods sent the 5c on the turn and the 2c on the river to give Lowe the flush. I was a 97% favorite when the money went in. But Lowe took the pot.

I was in deep trouble now and went out on the very next hand when I pushed my pocket fives and Burldog called with Jd 6d. A jack and a six on the flop and the poker gods spit in my face. I was gone in third place.

The heads up match lasted 18 hands. They went into the match almost equal in chips and battled hard. Both were pushing even the slightest advantage but Lowe blinked first. Burldog talked him out of the first big pot and that was the deciding factor.

Burldog44 logged his second Holdem Affair victory. Somehow I don’t think it will be his last.

See you all this Saturday.


Friday, July 14, 2006

You Folks Are Great

I'm not quite sure how to write this. I have put it off for a couple days now trying to figure it out. I still don't know but, anyway, here goes.

I got an email from Txmom last week asking for my real name and mailing address. She said Winforlife had a "random prize" for me from his anniversary tournament. I, of course, gave her the info and - to be honest - I was hoping for a hat. I think it would be cool to sport the UB colors at the occasional home game that I play. And hey, maybe I could get a little respect and they will quit calling me when I try to steal.

Well, Wednesday I came home from work and there was a box at my front door. Cool, the prize arrived. I opened it up and look what I found. This amazing trophy.

Txmom and Hemi Henry - you two are great. You blew me away. Winforlife told me this was entirely your doing. Thank you.

It is in the living room right now - on the end table. The place of honor in our home. It will eventually find a home on my desk so I can look at it while I am playing poker or writing my stories. But that means I will have to clear a spot for it - not an easy task on my desk.

Folks, I write these stories because I enjoy doing it. But now I realize that you enjoy reading them. That makes it even more fun for me. Thank you all, and . . . . .


Sunday, July 09, 2006

Kate Starbird Does It Again

Kate Starbird, our very own Papoorboy, did it again. Kate showed us again why he is one of the most feared players in the Holdem Affair. Fifty players sat down tonight but Kate showed he was the best of the best. Hazy Cat was his victim in the heads up match. Goodtime Chas, newcomer RipleyBP, and Idblondee completed the money table.

Sorry guys, I can’t give you the scoop on the early tables. I’m afraid that I was off donating my money to a home game. I busted out 8th out of nine. Yech. But the good part was that meant I was home to see the final table of a much better played tournament.

The final table looked like this when I caught up to it on hand four.
1. RipleyBP = 15740
2. Kate Starbird = 14960
3. Goodtime Chas = 9005
4. Hazy Cat = 8010
5. Honda Driver = 7395
6. Idblondee = 7110
7. CowboyWillie = 6830
8. Txmom22 = 3330
9. Rivaturn = 1405
10. msrinny02 = 1215

I got to the table just in time for the big action to start. Hand 4, with the antes 75 and the blinds 300/600, saw Honda Driver open for 1200 and Kate Starbird made the call from the big blind. The flop came 3h 5s Ad. Kate checked and Honda Driver bet 3450. Kate came back for 6900 taking Honda all-in with the call. Honda Driver turned over a beautiful pair of tens but Kate Starbird showed big slick. The pair of aces was all it took to send Honda Driver home from his first final table.

Hand 10 and Msrinny02 is posting the 800 big blind from her 2780 stack. Looking a little thin there rinny. And she agreed. All fold to the small blind and they see a cheap flop come 4s 3h 6d. Msrinny holds Jh 4c and just caught a piece of that very weak flop. CowboyWillie bet 800 and rinny didn’t believe him. She answered with a push. But Willie had caught part of that flop as well – Ad 6c equals top pair/top kicker. Good enough to send Rinny to the rail in 9th place.

The very next hand Rivaturn is trying to hide behind his stack of 430 chips but it just isn’t working for him. With the blinds coming next hand he pushed UTG holding Ad 8c. Cowboy Willie was the only taker but his Ac Ts was good enough. Rivaturn was gone in 8th place. Willie was thinning the field single handedly. That put Willie firmly into third place.

But hand 18 was less fortunate for Willie. Goodtime Chas was short stacked and opened for 2400, half his stack. All folded but Willie in the small blind. The flop came 5s 7c 8h, and Goodtime Chas pushed the rest of his stack – 2230. I can’t say what Willie was thinking but with that piddling flop he had to wonder how it could have helped Chas. Willie held Kc 9s – two overs and a gut-shot. He called. Oops, Chas turned over Ah Ac. And Willie was the short stack.

That hand was Cowboy Willie’s demise. The very next hand, RipleyBP raised to 2400 and Willie called on the button. That left Willie with only 810 chips – he was forced to call any bet from Ripley which, of course, Ripley was happy to provide when the flop came 2h 9c 7h. RipleyBP held Ac 7s and had caught second pair. Good enough for a bet. Willie held Ah 8s. The better hand pre-flop but the flop had missed him. The rest of the board didn’t cooperate either and Cowboy Willie was gone in 7th place.

We were paying five this night so it was bubble time. Who will be the unfortunate winner of the bubble award? The antes were now 125 and the blinds 600/1200. The stacks ranged from Kate Starbird with 29000 to Txmom22 with 3710. Hand 22 and Hazy Cat doubled up through Kate to secure his position. The bubble play didn’t last long this week. The blinds had gone through once and Txmom was UTG and faced with posting the big blind again when she was dealt Ac 6d on hand 29. That Ace will have to do. Mom pushed and Kate called. But Kate held pocket sevens. It was a low board but it danced around Txmom without helping her out. We were down to the money table.

Idblondee went into the money table the short stack but battled hard to stay in the game. Twice she stole the blinds to buy another orbit. But hand 41 found her UTG with only 3035 and faced with 150 antes and the 1600 big blind coming in the next hand. Qh 9h was going to have to be good enough – push was the play. But she got two callers – Yech. Goodtime Chas and Ripley looked her up. When the flop came 2d 6s 7h, Chas pushed as well. I’m sure he wanted Ripley out of the hand. He is well aware of the standard tournament check down play when the short stack is all-in. He was saying he had her beat. But Ripley said, I think I have you both beat and made the call. Oh boy, what have we got here? Goodtime Chas turned over pocket eights for the over pair and Ripley had called with just two over cards, Kd Qs. What a swing for Chas, Idblondee was gone, Ripley had dropped from second stack to short stack and now Chas was firmly in second place. What a big hand.

But that wasn’t the end of Ripley, he doubled up through Chas on hand 45 and then doubled up again, this time through Hazy Cat on hand 47. But by hand 53 the antes were 200 and the blinds 1000/2000. Ripley had 12860 chips and opened for 7800. Kate raised enough to take him all-in. Ripley held Ac 5h and Kate Starbird had pocket eights. Didn’t we see a hand like this earlier? This one ended quickly when the 8c showed on the flop. RipleyBP was our 4th place winner. We were down to three, Kate had 42000
chips and Hazy Cat and Chas shared the other 33000.

Hand 56 and Chas is all in with big slick against Hazy Cat holding 9c 8d. There is a reason why tournament regulars call AK the “Anna Kournikova” – it looks good but it doesn’t win. This time the board ended up Jc 8s 7s 6h 6d – The pair of eights took the pot. Goodtime Chas was our 3rd place winner.

The heads up was one hand. They saw the cheap flop come Th 5c 6d. It went check, raise, re-raise, push, call and all the chips were in the middle. Hazy Cat had flopped top pair with his Ts 4c. I’d push too. But this time Kate held Tc 6s and had hit two pair. No way was Hazy Cat going to push him off that hand.

That was the end of a great night. We crowned Kate Starbird once again and saw Hazy Cat put on a show as well. This is good poker folks. As I look over these hands, there is very little to criticize. You have to be good just to make the final table in the Holdem Affair. And it is getting tougher each week.

See you next Saturday.


Saturday, July 01, 2006

Takechances Won it all

Twenty-one people sat down tonight to contest the Holdem Affair. But it was the relative newcomer Takechances that lived up to his name and took home the glory. Winforlife, our favorite Warrior was the heads up victim. And Hemi Henry completed the money table tonight with some excellent play.

It was a small field for this week’s Holdem Affair but it was a good one. We were down to 18 when the first hour break occurred. That means we lost only three players. That has to be a new record for the patience of this field. Here is your leader board.
  1. coachstove = 4580

  2. deadmanshand = 2690

  3. Tai pan = 250

  4. Sunbob = 2545

  5. Takechances = 2260

  6. Boomstick = 2080

  7. spideytwo = 1915

  8. msrinny02 = 1830

  9. winforlife = 1610

  10. bugman22j = 1510

As usual it was the second hour when the tournament really began. This is when the blinds start to catch up to you and before you now it you are needing to make a play. This week it was just 45 minutes to pare this group down to the final table. I busted out in eleventh place when Papoorboy knocked me out. He did that the night before as well. Did I do something to upset you pa? Here is your final table.
  1. Boomstick = 5020

  2. msrinny02 = 4750

  3. spideytwo = 4165

  4. coachstove = 3930

  5. Hemi Henry = 3705

  6. Tai pan = 2985

  7. Papoorboy = 2460

  8. Hazy Cat = 1650

  9. winforlife = 1500

  10. Takechances = 1335

Please note those last two names as this is going to be significant very soon. Takechances started quick to get back into this match. On just the second hand he was all-in for 1035 holding Ac Tc. Spideytwo made the call and turned over As 7s. Spidey looked to be in trouble but the flop brought him the 7d. It was looking bleak for Takechances until the river spiked the Ts and gave him the hand. Chances has doubled up and is now feeling more comfortable.

At least that is what you might think. On the very next hand winforlife opened UTG for 1050 and Papoorboy responded by going all-in for his last 2310. Takechances pushed all 2370 of his newly won chips into the middle in response, and winforlife called all of this action. What have we here? OK, let’s see those hands that brought all of this commotion.
winforlife shows Kc As.
Papoorboy shows 8s 8h.
Takechances shows Qd Qh.
Well now we see. This is going to be interesting? Winforlife and Papoorboy are all-in and Takechances has 60 chips left sitting in front of him. Here comes the flop.
7s 4s 9h – Chances is looking good. And the turn is the 7d. Still looks like Chances took the right chance. And the river is - - - - Kh. Winforlife has tripled up, Takechances wins the side pot of 1620 and Papoorboy is gone – the first to be eliminated from the final table. The winner of the Win’s Warriors Anniversary trophy just the night before is gone from the Holdem Affair. Oh my.

Hand 12 and Takechances is back to being short stacked with 1680 and the blinds 150/300. All-in with Ah Qs but msrinny02 made the call with her Ac Ks. The flop was one those heart breakers - Td Kh Jd. You want to see a king on the flop when you hold big slick but you don’t want to see that jack and ten when you are up against AQ. Takechances flopped the straight and doubled up again.

Hand 16 saw coachstove raise UTG to 900 and Hazy Cat, that famous mouser, push all of his 2100 to the middle. Coach made the call. Hazy Cat had Qs Qc and coachstove had Kc Kh. No help for either on the board and the queens went down on the Kings. Hazy Cat was gone in 9th place and we have a new chip leader in coachstove.

During all of this action you have not heard from Boomstick. He was staying out of the big pots and keeping his chip lead with small pots. Until he ran into our crafty Pacific Islander in hand 18. Boomstick raised to 600 and Tai pan showed his disregard for the min-raise by pushing all 1485. Boomstick accepted the challenge and called with his Ad Th. Tai turned over Ah Qh. This one was over before the river. The flop came Jd 6s Jc and the turn was the Kc. At this point Boomstick was drawing dead even though neither hand had improved. The Ts on the river gave Boomstick the pair but that same card gave Tai pan the straight. Interesting hand. It doubled up the short stack and reeled in the big stack. These stacks were tightening up. Eight players left and six of them had stacks between 3105 and 3810. Coachstove was the leader with 5880. It was still anyone’s match to win.

The antes kicked in on hand 20 this week. This frequently brings a shift in the action. But it didn’t seem to phase this bunch. They danced and sparred until hand 33. Boomstick min-raised to 600 and this time coachstove showed his disrespect with a re-raise to 1300. Boomstick responded by pushing and coachstove was quick to make the call. Boomstick had KT in spades but coachstove held the red pocket rockets. Not a single spade came to rescue Boomstick and he was gone in 8th place. With this hand coachstove jumped to a commanding lead but it wouldn’t last for long. Just two hands later Hemi Henry doubled up through coach when his AK out drew coach with AQ. Then on hand 41, coachstove was still in the chip lead but not by much, Hemi Henry was in second by only 225 chips. On this hand Hemi Henry showed his special talent for extracting chips. Henry just smooth called and drew coachstove into the pot to see the flop come 3c Ts 8c. Coachstove held Ac 6c and had flopped the nut flush draw – he could very well be good here and fired 600 to see. Hemi Henry just min-raised him to 1200 and drew the call from coach. The turn was the 4h and coach checked to Henry who bet 400. The 8h on the river and coach has missed his flush but with Henry acting so weak he had to fire – 1000 was his shot. Henry called and turned over Ah As. He had slow played those aces into a 6750 pot and a commanding chip lead.

By hand 53 the antes were 50 and the blinds 200/400 and the field was bunched between spideytwo with 2000 and Hemi Henry at 6905 – from 5 big blinds to 15. It was still anyone’s tournament to win but it was time to move. And spideytwo picked this hand to push UTG with his Ac 9h. The right play but he ran into msrinny02 holding Ah Kd. The king on the flop was all rinny needed and spideytwo, a winner last month, was gone in 7th place.

Hand 62 and it was Tai pan that made his move. Big slick is the hand to do it with and Takechances made the call. True to his name – Chances had called with 7h 6d. This is actually a decent play in this situation – he can figure he probably has two live cards and is only a 60:40 dog. The 6c on the flop was the deciding card and Tai pan rowed home in 6th place.

Dodge and weave, thrust and parry, do-se-do and tango – the next 15 hands were a war. Msrinny came out of this action wounded and on hand 77 was forced to push with her pocket threes. Coachstove called with his suited king/queen and spiked the king on the river to send msrinny02 packing in 5th place.

We were paying only three tonight and the bubble lasted 30 hands. Thirty hands of intense action. Hemi Henry was down but then doubled up only to see coachstove do the same thing. Then it was winforlife. Then they all did it again. During this time Takechances was doing his best to help one of them exit only to double them up again. He was winning enough of the small pots though to build a commanding chip stack. Finally on hand 117, with the antes 125 and the blinds 600/1200 coachstove was down to 1745 and forced to push after he posted the small blind. But hey, if you have to push Ah Qs isn’t a bad hand to do it with. In fact it was the best hand pre-flop when winforlife called with his Ad Tc. Another one of those evil flops came Jh Kd Qd. Top pair for coach but the straight for winforlife. Coachstove had to settle for bubble boy this week. Yech.

Win and Henry were pretty much even at this point and Takechances was double them. They danced to hand 123 when Henry pushed on the turn holding 3s Ad and the board showing 4s 2s Js Qc. A flush draw and a gutshot – not a bad play. But Takechances held 9s 5s and had flopped the made flush. Hemi Henry was out in 3rd place. It was great to see you in the money table Henry. I have a feeling we will see you there often in the coming weeks.

With a 24:7 chip lead it was a tough task ahead for winforlife. And I’m afraid it was just too much this week for our warrior. It took 24 hands but this week belonged to Takechances. He lived up to his name and took those chances at the right time. And our newcomer was a victor. Very well played. Takechances went from 10th place to first and winforlife from ninth to second. That is how volatile this final table can be. If you get there you can win. It is the getting there that can be tough with this group.


Kate Starbird Wins the Trophy

Kate Starbird (aka papoorboy) announced at the opening table that he was after that trophy and he made good on that claim. Eighty-six others tried to take it away from him but he could not be stopped. But all claimed that the Win's Warriors anniversary tournament was a HUGE success.

It took three hours but we were down to five when the bell rang. Here is your leaderboard.
1. Kate Starbird = 46530
2. Sengar = 36695
3. MagikCowboy = 36520
4. Unionthug = 8140
5. Red Warrior = 2615

It was hand 59 of the final table with the antes 200 and the blinds 1000/2000. Red Warrior was down to his last 2415 when he posted his ante. Ad 3s - you have to push now or never, Red. Sengar and MagikCowboy both called to see the flop come 9d 7h 8s. In true tournament fashion, Sengar and Magik checked it down and the table ended up 9d 7h 8s 2s Ts. It had missed both Sengar and Red but MagikCowboy caught a piece of it holding 5s 2d. He had hoped for two live cards, I guess and he was right. The pair of deuces was good enough to send Red Warrior to the rail in fifth place.

Unionthug was next to go on hand 64. He was down to 10540 and went for the steal holding Js 5s with a raise to 7800. Sengar came over the top taking him all-in with the call. Sengar had a hand this time - As Qh. The flop came Qs 4c Ks giving Sengar second pair/top kicker but Thug had a flush draw. A club on the turn and a heart on the river spelled the ended for our favorite Canadian. We were down to three and it was a dead heat with three equal chip stacks.

But that didn't last long. Hand 71 and Kate Starbird raised to 8600. Sengar responded with a re-raise to 26400. Not a bad play since Kate is known to play any two cards if the thinks the situation is right. And this time Kate fired right back going all-in for his chip leading 50930. Sengar had been put to the test. He was holding Ad 4h. What would you do in that situation. Kate has been stealing and re-stealing all night. Does he have the goods now or just a big sack under that skirt? Sengar almost timed out but made the call. You can't blame him given his hand and the situation but this time Kate had the goods - Ah Kd. This is when the LAG style of play pays off. Sengar was caught. Actually the table missed them both but the King kicker was all Kate needed to take the hand and the huge chip lead.

Going into the heads up match Kate Starbird had 110,000 and MagikCowboy has about 20,000. Magik is one heck of a heads up player but so is Kate and with that chip differential it was only a matter of time. At least twice Magik had the goods but just couldn't get Kate to fall into a trap. The final hand came on hand 92 when Magik limped and Kate pushed back for 7600. Magik pushed it all into the middle in what could have been a steal or maybe a trap. Actually Magik held Th 9h so it was more of a semi-bluff. But that didn't matter to Kate because he was staring at Ad Ah. It was fitting that a tournament of this caliber, one that so many people had enjoyed so much ended on a hand like that.

It was a great match. Everyone had a great time and was grateful to Winforlife for all of the hard work put into the evening.

Way to go Warriors.