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Daniel - Poker Journal

The PPT Final

27 Feb 2005

That's kinda what happened to me at the PPT final table. I had a really difficult decision, but had to make it in 90 seconds or my hand would be declared dead.

I think overall that I take a lot less time than most players, but when I need to think through a hand sometimes I might need a few minutes. The longer you wait out a guy, the more information you can often get from him.

Well at the PPT you just don't have that luxury at the final table. Down to three handed I had a key hand come up against E-DOG. Erick raised on the button to 45,000, Chris Bigler called from the small blind and I called from the big blind with Qh 8h.

The flop came J-8-2 rainbow with one heart. Chris checked, I checked, and E-DOG bet 80,000. By the amount he bet, and they way he put the chips in my gut told me he didn't have all that much.

Chris folded, and normally in this situation I would just flat call and see what rolled off on the turn. Erick knows that though, so I thought I'd do something a little different. I check-raised, calling the 80,000 and raising 150,000 more leaving me with 204,000 left just in case.

After putting in that much money, Erick has to know that I'm committed to the pot regardless of my hand. So on that note, my plan was to fold if he re-raised me and save my 200,000. Well that's just what Erick did, he moved all in.

For some reason I now thought that he had to have at least top pair if not better. He could have 9-10, in which case he still has a ton of outs against me.

With 20 seconds left on the clock I still hadn't processed all of the information so I asked for my 30 second extension. That seemed to zoom by in no time and as the clock ticked down 3... 2.... 1... I was still undecided. "Your hand is dead Daniel.' Jan let me know.

The very next hand Bigler raised on the button to 45,000 I moved all in on him with A-7. Looked like a great spot (Chris had K-J) but Erick woke up in the big blind with 10-10 and that was it for me.

I immediately asked E-DOG what he had and he told me... Q-10! Q-10! He bluffed me for my last 204,000 after I'd already invested 275,000 in the pot. Wow. That's both a great read/crazy play he made, but my hat's off to him. Congrats E-DOG.

That night we celebrated over at the Spider Club and I had a great time. My boys from the Israeli game, Oren, Regev, and Ofer joined us and we partied all night.

E-DOG sprang for a limo making sure we were all being responsible and we sat at the best table in the house. Good times.

Late last night I decided to make the drive over to San Diego rather than fly. I finally got my Magellan GPS system to work in my truck so I was able to get there smoothly.

Right now it's 11:45am and I am playing in the WSOP Circuit event here in San Diego. I feel good. Both well rested, and hungry for my first W of the year.