Well, fast forward a few hours, and ... I won! Took down 1st place out of 29 entrants for a $615 score on the $60 buy-in! Since I apparently love the bulletpoint format, following are some miscellaneous details & thoughts about the experience, (my first ever non-home game live tournament cash... let alone victory)...:
- Never underestimate the incompetence of humankind. While there was definitely a handful of players there that knew what they were doing... there was far more that certainly did not! To me, as far as skill level is concerned, ~$50-$100 LIVE tournaments are similar to the $10 buy-in MTTs online.
- My reads rock! People don't seem to try very hard to mask their holdings. I was surprised by the number of physical tells that were easily picked up on, not to mention betting patterns being very easily decipherable. (Pardon my floating my own boat here, but that's my arrogant nature, and if you visit this blog you're used to it by now.) Every single time I made a move that was due to a read, it worked out exactly as intended. Love it when a plan comes together.
- Some people just don't have a clue! This one OLD bitch, (who actually started the tournament giving Matt an angry earful about his bad attitude / poor etiquette, for his choice to only show one of his hole cards after winning a pot,) couldn't understand the game if she was Doyle Brunson's mistress! The old hag (who wore a nasty looking perpetual scowl on her face, as if someone had put poison ivy in her Depends,) had just 9k in chips w/blinds at 1,500/3k, and she chooses to LIMP from MP... her and the BB see a flop of 389, BB checks, she shoves for her other 6k into a pot of 8,500, and the BB makes the call with 73o. She turns over AJo... and after bricking the turn & river she vents about her bad "luck," and the big blind's "gamble" of a call!!!??? WTF?! Some people should stick to Pinochle!
- It's my belief that building one's own table image, or at least understanding of what one's own table image has become, is as much, if not more important than getting reads on villains themselves. After purposefully illustrating a very weak/tight nature throughout the first couple levels, I was able to easily exploit the tables' belief that I only played top holdings.
- And, (in this week's note from Captain Obvious,) winning tournaments does require a bit of luck. While I cannot recall ever getting it in behind, I did have the fabulous good fortune to be dealt QQ and JJ while five handed, and in the cash... each held up to knock out competitors' Ax hands that had pushed into me, and this catapulted me to a massive lead going into the final three. Without these two huge pots, taking down the tournament would've required much more of a grind.
- Taking first place not only won me the $615 prize, but also entry into the casino's monthly $1,500 freeroll, which takes place this Sunday. That's where I'll be to watch NFL games this week. Evidently the handful of tourney winners, and those with the most hours logged at their live games for the month get free entry into a 3table tourney where the top 9 make the cash in a monthly giveaway.
- I suppose I really didn't "net" all that much, considering I did tip $75 to the very friendly dealers, and gifted my two buddies a return on their buyins, to make it a freeroll for 'em... and, of course, spent a decent chunk on contraband before the night was over. But still, I've got ~$350 I didn't have at this time yesterday! Good enough to put me in a good mood going into the weekend.
Hope all is well with you and yours. Have a great weekend...
'Til next time...
Respect is all you have left in the morning,