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Daniel - Poker Journal

Homesick

04 Oct 2008

Before I can do that, I've got just one more tournament left to play. I wasn't able to play the regular EPT London event due to me finishing 5th at the WSOPE, but I will be playing in the 20,000 pound buy in "High Rollers" event.
It's going to take some serious adjustments for me to do well in that event because it's a two day event which means a fast paced structure that will force the play to go pre-flop rather than post-flop pretty quickly in order to finish in time. For the last 50+ hours I grew accustomed to a very slow place with two hour levels which allowed me to really play within my comfort zone. I'll need to come out of that comfort zone and conform to a more gambling like approach for this event. Really depend more on my instincts and take a lot of risks when i think I'm ahead, something I avoided doing at the WSOPE.

The event boasts 60 minute levels and 20,000 in starting chips. The goal is to get down from a 100 player field to 8 in a day so some levels had to be omitted from the structure. It's still going to be a tight squeeze and likely a long day, but here is what the structure looks like:

50-100
100-200
150-300
200-400
200-400 (50)
-----------------
300-600 (75)
400-800 (100)
-----------------
600-1200 (100)
800-1600 (200)
1000-2000 (200)
-----------------
1500-3000 (300)
2000-4000 (400)
-----------------
3000-6000 (500)
4000-8000 (1000)
5000-10,000 (1000)
6000-12,000 (1000)
8000-16,000 (2000)
10,000-20,000 (2000)
------------------
15,000-30,000 (3000)
20,000-40,000 (4000)
25,000-50,000 (5000)
30,000-60,000 (6000)

The lines represent missing levels and also factoring in the 60 minute levels the average stack will dwindle below 40 BB's rather quickly, and at that point few flops will be seen as most players will be forced to make the important decision about their hand before the flop.

For those curious, small ball cannot be applied to a structure like this effectively once the average stack dips below the 40 BB mark. Your raise sizing can, and should remain the same as it would with the small ball approach, but no longer can you call raises liberally and see flops instead of re-raising pre-flop with relatively strong hands. The dead money in the pot is already going to be substantial enough to warrant a re-raise.

I'm playing exceptional poker at the moment and will put in my best effort, but this type of a structure will neutralize some of my advantage over the field because it takes away many opportunities to see flops in position. My focus will be to work on a different aspect of my game, one that isn't as strong as it could be. It's a less consistent style but this structure may warrant it so I may either be out early, or will amass a decent stack by level 6.

I would expect the online pros to do quite well in this event because it mimics the events they are accustomed to playing with the average stack size being shallow for the most part.


****************************************************************

I can't wait to go home. I'll only be home a few days before heading to Niagara Falls, and those few days will be filled with work for The Real Deal show and PokerVT, but I miss my dog Mushu and just hope he doesn't hate me when he sees me. Chihuahuas are sensitive dogs and when I leave for long stretches I can't help but get the feeling that he feels abandoned by me. What's worse, is that just when things will be better... I'm off again to Niagara.

I also miss my buddies. They are a bunch of idiots, but they are my idiots. I miss golfing with them, hanging out and making up a bunch of ridiculous bets that no one has any intention of paying, "I'll lay you 20-1 on $10,000 that you never shoot 75 from the blues in the next 5 years." Or something similarly stupid. I miss having dinner at some Sushi place and doing the sake/beer thing and then playing pool, Golden Tee, or even Wii bowling. I've worked really hard out here but didn't really have any fun. Oh well, fun isn't what I was here for- I was here to win.

My other true passion is my fantasy hockey team and we did our entry draft today. I already had a full team so only picked up four players. I feel great about where I got the players I picked because I had them rated much higher:

1st Pick 17th overall: D Jake Gardiner, ANA. (2nd on my list)
2nd Pick 37th overall: D Brandon Burlon, NJ. (15th on my list)
3rd Pick 57th overall: F Evgeny Grachev, NYR. (19th on my list)
4th pick 77th overall: D Michael Ratchuk, PHI (25th on my list)

Decent work in a draft that was the weakest in the history of our pool. I'm confident that I was the most prepared out of the 20 owners and I am a mortal lock to win my division with the youngest team I've ever had, all entering their prime. If you read some of my old hockey blogs, you'd know, that winning my fantasy league championship is on par with winning a WSOP bracelet and no, I'm totally not kidding.

****************************************************************

My body is a bit worn down from the WSOPE. It was a grueling marathon and depleted me of a lot of energy, but man, at that final table I had a full tank of energy, but the cards didn't cooperate. I don't know what my energy will be like for tomorrow, but I plan on trying to play my 100% best poker and see if I can get lucky when I need to.

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