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22 Feb 2005


I don't know what it is exactly. When I'm home in Vegas I'm up bright and early, right around noon. For some odd reason though anytime I spend time in LA I end up sleeping all day and waking up at around 5:00pm.

By that time the maids have already left so I'm left to make my bed on my own. When I get up I flip on the computer and basically veg out for a couple hours. Then, head over to the Commerce and jump right in a game. That just never worked all that well for me. I always feel a little sluggish when I do that and this week has been no different.

Yesterday I headed over to the Commerce at around 8:00pm and started a game at around 8:30pm. The lineup was pretty typical:

Seat One: Me
Seat Two: Johnny Chan
Seat Three: Chau Giang
Seat Four: Phil Ivey
Seat Five: Lee Salem
Seat Six: Chip Reese (followed by Gus Hansen)
Seat Seven: Lyle Berman
Seat Eight: Doyle Brunson

The games were the same, although we didn't get the triple draw in because the others don't like to play it eight handed. That's a shame because I think it's one of the games where my advantage is biggest.

Right off the bat I lost a pot here and there and was down about 75,000. I struggled for the next few hours until I was about $100,000 winner. In the big game, your end result for the session is usually going to be decided by how well you do in the capped pots where you put in $100,000.

Well, capped pots haven't been good to me lately. The first capped pot I played was in no limit 2-7 single draw. I was on the button against Phil Ivey and Chip Reese who both drew one ahead of me:

Phil Ivey: 2-3-5-8
Chip Reese: 3-5-7-9
Me: 2-4-6-7 (2)

This spot is about as good as any. I'm either going to lose $100,000 or win $200,000 and if I make my hand they can't win. Ivey draws a Q. Chip behind him draws an Ace.

So now all I need to catch is a 3,5,8,9,10,J, or a Q to scoop the pot. I look at the card and it's "nothing across" meaning it's either an Ace, 2, or 3. Not the best sweat, I would have much rather sweat in a "four across" meaning it would either be a 9 or a 10.

A "nothing across" gave me a one in three chance of making my hand. I then looked at the left corner of the card and saw a spot. Now I was 50-50, it was either a 2 or a 3.

For those of you totally confused by what I'm talking about it's called squeezing. Instead of just looking right at the card you caught you add "drama" to it by narrowing down the possibilities of what it could be.

By lifting the card slightly you can narrow down what it might be. For example if you see a line, then you know it's a paint card (K, Q, J). If you see no points on the card then it has to be an Ace, 2, or a 3. If you see two points on the card you know it has to be either a 4, or a 5. Three points, would be a 6, 7, or an 8 and finally a four across being a 9 or a 10.

So back to the hand, I don't see a point in the middle so I know I've paired. Oh well, back to even again.

Over the next couple hours I was floating right around even not getting many hands worth playing. Then in Omaha H/L I picked up the As-2s J-8 on the button. Ivey raised and I re-raised from the button and Chau called.

The flop came perfect: 3s 5h Js, giving me top pair, the nut flush draw, the nut low draw, and a gut shot wheel draw. Chau bet out and Ivey called. I raised and Chau re-raised. Of course since I had the button and a monster hand I re-raised again.

The turn came another Jack giving me trips with an ace kicker, the nut flush draw, nut low draw, and a gut shot wheel draw. Chau bet out again and I raised it one more time.

The river came an ace which seemed like an "ok" card giving me a full house, but Chau bet again! I raised once more and Chau called. Chau's hand was 2-3-4-7 with two spades. That's pretty much the way the evening went from there. There was no card in the deck that Chau could win the pot with, and ONLY an ace, deuce, or one of three sixes could get him half.

I ended up putting in an eight hour session once again and losing $190,000. Now for those of you shocked by that two day figure it's important to realize the stakes. In two days I'm down $441,000 which is nowhere near the biggest loser over that stretch. In fact, you can win half a million in an hour in that game, or lose it of course.

So while $441,000 is a lot of money in the real world, in that game it's not much of a figure at all. I'm totally comfortable with the figure personally and genuinely not worried about it.

I will say though that I could have played better. I felt sluggish during both sessions. I don't think that's the reason I lost two days in a row but I do think I may have lost a bet here or there due to a lack of focus. That's what I get for not taking my vitamin!

Tonight I think Iím going to kick back. Originally my plan was to sweat E-DOG at the WPT final table but since I got up so late I missed that opportunity. Instead Iím going to head over to my buddies Oren and Regevís dadís place for a ďbig poker game,Ē $20 buy in no limit holdíem freeze outs! Wish me luck.

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