Jeeze, where do I start... I'm likely going to cover a lot of the same ground as jzpiano
Prep and Props
First, thank you to thesnuke who helped a great deal with setting up the event. There's no way I'd have had a clean garage or clean house without him giving up a couple of afternoons of his life. Also, thanks to those who traveled from across the country and across the city to come visit my corner of Phoenix. The event would have been impossible without you.
I worked for exactly two and a half hours on Thursday morning and then drove out to pick up a keg of beer. Local, simple. Based on the discussion we had prior, I made the game-time decision to go with Four Peaks Kiltlifter. I took it, 60# of ice, a tap and a tub home to get cooling. Once that was settled, I took the wife out to Harrah's to pick up a pair of rooms for the out-of-towners and make one last Home Depot trip for an extension cord and trash bags. 4pm at Harrah's and the rooms aren't ready yet. We grab the extension cords and by 5pm the rooms are ready. I call thesnuke and tell him he might beat us to the house. A little before 6pm we get back and await the arrival of the out-of-towners.
I'm completely lost on the details of Thursday, but the gist of the evening is we had a mostly-full single-table of low-limit mixed games, ordered a few pizzas, and spent most of the night bull****ting and talking about Phoenix. Glocks were mandatory, as were flips and beers. Everyone surrenders at my place in the early AM, and we set our sights on Thursday.
We knew that my guys had to work Friday day, so I started by meeting the guys out at Maricopa for lunch. We use one free buffet pass for new players, two $9 discounts for Diamond players, and what must have been one discount for "normal" carded players. $21 in points covered the lunch off my card, and the out-of-towners covered the tip -- just the tip -- just for a minute -- just to see how it feels. [ahem..]
I shanghai'd Breich for the drive back into Phoenix, and took the opportunity to stop by my friend's gaming store in Gilbert. Not exactly on the way, but we had time before others would show up, and we were all just nerd enough to stop. A couple of retro video game plays and one nerd purchase later, we were back off to Ahwatukee.
Evening comes around and guests start to trickle in on their own goddamned schedule. We run two tables of mostly-full cash action, one 3-6 mix game that starts 10-game-nutty and slowly works its way down to 5-game mostly-normal. The mix game runs slightly fewer players, so I make the decision to prop it up as the night goes on. Normally I'd have preferred to play "1" NL/PL, but 3-6 mix worked for me. I have few eventful hands, mostly donking off on draw games and making money back in Omaha. I nearly go bust once, but only because I pushed chips across the table to my wife -- which, in limit, seems fine, and ***** if you disagree, since I'm the floor
A bit later than I'd have liked, but still in time so we didn't die, we sent the wife to Rudy's for BBQ, and brought back $200 worth of meat, and $9.25 worth of vegetables. It kept the natives fed until mid-day Saturday.
4am comes soon, so everyone shuffles out to take a nap before Saturday. I'm actually one of the first to crash, leaving the last few to close the door on their way out -- including my wife.
Had a great time and nice to meet a bunch of 2+2ers. Caught some lucky cards when it counted, but Kenny (one of Pali's home game guys) crushed us like a bug...
Schmendy bowed out in 5th for a min-cash, and then 3 of us chopped 2nd and gave Kenny full first place $$, that's how much he had us dominated.
Kenny was my arch-nemesis through the entire tourney. Early on I ran/played well and built a big stack at table 3, then he took half of it repping a set with flopped TPWK. I rivered TPTK and still check-folded to his shove. We went to separate tables when ours broke not long after, and I ran my stack up again. By the time the bubble burst, I was second in chips to Kenny, but my stack was well under 10bb.
We briefly discussed a chop, but at this point Kenny was asking for more than first place money. I think he was a little confused as to how much first actually was. We decided to play on, he shoves JT into my 88, and with less than 10bb left I call. Just to ensure that I have no sweat whatsoever, the flop comes AKQ. I'm out in fifth, and the four remaining players chop it up.
Big bald local pictured a few posts up checking in here. Main event was a great time, even though we all got run over by the Kenny Express. Hope you out-of-towners enjoyed the Filiberto's for dinner -- that's an Arizona institution of sorts. Thanks to Pali and the Mrs. for their outstanding hosting! Looking forward to any trip reports.
Good to have met you!
Filiberto's was outstanding, along with Rudy's BBQ the night before.
jzpiano's massive TR covered most of it, so I'll throw in a few of my personal highlights:
After a couple weeks of long second-shift days in southern Kentucky, I hopped a plane to Phoenix on Thursday morning and arrived about an hour before jzpiano and Breich. The timing was good - I got my luggage and the rental car, made a short phone call to my wife, and picked them up.
The first evening was great - good beer, a fun mix of games, and a 5BB profit after an evening of 3/6 mix. We returned to Harrah's and jumped into the 3/6 full kill Omaha8 game that jz mentioned, and my luck was not as good as his. I got into a four-way kill pot that was capped preflop with JJxx (I think it was JJQK) and the flop comes J55. It goes three bets on the flop with one fold, ace on the turn gets two bets, and the preflop capper leads out on the blank river (no low) after simply calling flop and turn. Something smelled, and I just called. Of course, he had AA and scooped. I ended the session down $190, but considering that it was effectively a 6/12 game due to the high number of kill pots, I really only lost about 16BB.
After lunch at Harrah's and some geek-out time talking about Ingress and visiting the gaming store that jz mentioned, we got to Pali's and bagged chips for the tourney, then got a 3/6 10-game mix going. I did okay, going down for a while but running back up to a 12BB profit before moving over to the $1 single blind NLHE/PLO/PLO8 table and sitting down to jz's right. This later proved to be the single worst decision I made all weekend.
To quote Breich, I was living in second-best land all night long. It was agonizing, and I had to leave the table a couple times after getting stacked because I was so ridiculously tilted. I had a couple things going against me, of course. First, I have very little PLO experience, and my play certainly showed that. I was playing hands that I shouldn't have (largely out of frustration at being card-dead) and getting run over by the more experienced players, particularly jz sitting to my immediate left. I paid for some education this session, dusting off three full buy-ins over about eight hours. I was more than a little grumpy for the last couple hours of the session, and I hope nobody took it personally.
After licking my wounds and getting a good night's sleep, I felt much better the next morning. I woke up a little earlier than the Chi-town boys and headed downstairs to find a 3/6 full kill LHE game running. I got on the list and it only took a few minutes to get a seat. I had some rungoot on a very loose-passive table and cashed out two racks up after just over an hour of play (+33BB). Since you had to win two in a row for a kill pot, this game played much closer to 3/6 than the Omaha game of a few hours ago.
We arrived at Pali's just a few minutes before the tourney was scheduled to start and jumped in. I drew a seat at table 3 in the garage, and I was the chip leader at that table for most of the time, except for a short period after the hand where I gave 1/3 of my 45K-ish stack to Kenny on a well-played bluff. I ran it up to about 60K by the time table 3 broke, and hovered around that stack size for a very long time, taking about 70K to the final table.
The rounds were long for a home format (35 minutes) but the structure was brutal with the blinds doubling every round at this point. Everybody was tight on the bubble, and Kenny was playing his button pretty aggressively as he should have with a massive chip lead of around 200K. By the time the bubble burst, I was up to about 105K and in second place. We briefly discussed a chop, then played only one or two hands before my 88 went down to Kenny's JT AIPF. After I was gone, the remaining players decided to give Kenny first place money and chop the rest - ouch.
After that, we got the $1 NLHE/PLO/PLO8 game going again, and as jz mentioned, the focus was more on Lodden Thinks than the poker itself for most of the evening. I played a lot better this time, nursing a single BI all night, running it up $100 at one point but giving a good chunk of that to Breich and the card rack across the table whose name I can't remember. I ended up cashing out just below even, well after sunrise on Sunday morning.
We got to the hotel about 6:30am, said our goodbyes, and I caught an hour of half-sleep. I got my stuff together, degened off another $20 in the casino slots, then jumped in the car and headed to the airport. The flight home was bumpy as hell, and we sat on the taxiway for an hour after landing thanks to the lightning storm that was sitting over the airport. Finally we were able to deplane, it took another 45 minutes to get my luggage - they were backed up because of the storm - and Mrs. S and the rug rats picked me up and took me home.
I was in bed before 10pm and slept a solid 12 hours.
I had a blast this weekend. We couldn't have asked for a better host - thanks a million, Palimax. You were accommodating and extremely generous.
I would have happily stayed for another three days of poker if reality would have allowed it. But after a month on the road, I must admit that I'm very happy to be home. Now it's time to start planning for HPI 2014: ORLANDO!
Last edited by Schmendr1ck; 07-31-2013 at 06:19 PM.
I suppose I could have finished this off at the time, but...
People start rolling into the house around 1-2pm, with the final stragglers showing up at or shortly after 3pm. We had 20 for the event, which was a bit of a letdown, in that I had a few no-shows from guys I normally depend on, but all they would have done was fill out the three solid tables we ran.
BBQ leftovers from Friday provided the snacking for the day, and our plan to get "gringo" Mexican from Julio's kept slipping. Since thesnuke busted out early (or earlier, since stacks were deep), we just sent him to the nearby "working" Mexican restaurant -- the sort of place you get a couple of rolled tacos or a pile of carne asada. He returned with a pile of food, and by a little after 8pm, we had dinner. Not the plan, but seemed to please all the locals, who know their way around a Filibertos, and all the out-of-towners, who it was sort of a treat for regardless.
I played fairly strong early, developed a fairly TAG image, specifically showing a few hands early and not getting too involved when I didn't have a large stake in a pot. I let people steal pennies and made stands on dollars. I had a couple of unfortunate hands where I'd get 5k or so into someone's shove, but eventually made the final table with a slightly less than average stack. After the normal final table dance of stealing a few blinds and folding a few blinds, I took a stand with JJ against JK, and walked into an ATQ flop. I couldn't find one of the three remaining kings for a chop or a miracle J+pair for a win and I was out in 7th, just missing the money, as I accidentally announced to the remaining players on congrats for making the cash.
As previously mentioned Ken refused the chop. He had about 300k in chips, and simply had no reason to. The chop went well, but staring at the 10k-20k GTFH blinds, I probably would have refused the chop if I were on the button, and let a few people get crippled if it were a more serious tournament.
As the "main event" wound down, we settled into cash play. I played host for a while rather than play again. I normally love the game and limit we were playing, but I just sort of tended the house and made sure my guests were liquored up and my wife had cash.
Lodden games kept the cash table going until an hour or so later than I imagined it would have, which was fun. I had a few good questions, but mostly stolen from here. [Aside, we need a good Lodden thread of tested, sure-fire good questions. The other threads here honestly don't have a lot of great questions in them.]
I had one alcohol casualty, a friend from the gaming store, who passed out on my bathroom tile. [His shoes were on...] We left him sleep, and everyone who had to pee for the next 4 hours got to see my upstairs
From 6am to 9am on Sunday morning I took a nap.
Schmendr1ck had to leave early, so Jzpiano and Breich needed a ride from Maricopa. I needed to check out of the hotel and pick up the tiny bit of leftovers on the room - for points - but the clerk told me it was all comped, and the two days I was paying for (of the 7 booked) were added to that. So, I've still got 136,467 Harrah's points to use in my lifetime. I thanked Harrah's by incinerating a couple of 100-unit funtickets at the slots while waiting for the boys to finish showering and packing, and we headed off to lunch.
After a lazy Double Double at In'n'Out, we took the final drive to Sky Harbor, and the weekend officially ended.
I want to give a special thanks to all of my guests. A number of whom decided to throw me some $10's and $20's before they exited the weekend. The out-of-towners threw me more than a single $20 each before they left. So if anyone local reads this, you can thank them for buying dinner or the keg, not me. Collectively all the people who left a donation paid for a lot of the weekend.
Thanks to everyone who came, and I'll see you all in 2014 in Orlando.
The J's hand of yours the river completed the low. I remember that because I thought he had a low and you didn't raise the players in the middle. I would've lost more $ with your hand there for sure.
Sent from my EVO 3D
Thanks - you're right of course.
Part of my logic for just calling the river was that the low got there. At that point I felt like I was playing for half the pot, I was concerned about my high becoming second-best when the ace hit the turn, and I didn't see a lot of value in raising. In spite of results, maybe it was a little monsters-under-the-bed syndrome. I was pretty worried about one of the two hands that beat me and not focused enough on villain's entire range, but I felt like the preflop cap made AAxx a lot more likely to be out there.