We started this $1,500 HORSE tournament with 824 players each with 4,500 chips. This is a ton of players for a HORSE tournament!
Looking around many of the top pros were mixed into the field, but there were also a slew of older players who tend to be much weaker than the players in their 20's and 30's. Why is that? We'll when you're 22 and you have no one but yourself to take care of, you have roommates, and can live on the cheap it's easy to get into playing poker for a living (like I did). But when you're 55 and you have kids in college, a house and a car payment, it's always just going to be a hobby.
Of course there are plenty of online no limit hotshots who don't know shit about playing HORSE who are even better to play against, but also a little more volatile.
I got off to very slow start in this one. I was between 2,500 and 3,500 chips for pretty much the first 4 hours of play. I won a few split pots during that time, but no big pots or even significant pots at all.
After the dinner break we started level 5 and during levels 5 and 6 I made up for the first 4. By the even of level 6 I was up to 12,000. A few minutes into level 7 I was up to 16,000. Average at that point was about 7k or 8k so I was really liking my chances.
Then I went stone cold. I couldn't make anything and of course the stakes kept getting higher. The end of level 8 which would mark the end of day 1 was looming and I thought the worst thing would be to make it to day 2, but have almost no chips. My plan was to fly home Thursday afternoon and another day in Vegas would mean added expense and more time away from my family who I'm missing like crazy right now.
At the same time if I had 4,500 chips they were still worth $1,500 and even if I had 2,250 (an amount I could get all in before the flop) the were worth $750. That's not the kind of money you want to just throw away, but I was in go for it mode as we approached the end of day 1.
I found myself with 3,500 chips playing hold'em (the H of the HORSE) with the blinds at 300/500 (stakes of 500/1,000) and I picked up 22 in middle position. Normally I would fold here, but I knew at most we'd be looking at 5 or 6 more hands before the end of the day.
So I raised, got reraised, the big blind came along and I made it 4 bets. Now 2,000 of my 3,500 was in the pot and I was committed. I prayed for a deuce on the flop and instead got J 8 5. I bet anyway and both opponents called. The turn was a 9 and I went all in for my last 1,000 getting one call. I was against AT who shockingly missed all of his 14 outs.
This old timer in seat 1 gave me a little smile and I said "The worst thing is to make it to day 2 with no chips."
Two hands later he raised and I looked down at JJ. I three bet it and he four bet it it. I thought he had a real hand, but I knew he was also thinking about those deuces. Amazingly the flop came down jack high! BOOM! Now I was really hoping he had something. He bet the flop, I raised him, and he three bet me. Ah ha! I'm going to punish this guy!
The turn was a queen, he bet, I raised, he reraised, and I raised again. The river was a brick and he bet out into me! I put in my last 1,600 and he called. He rolled over AA like he thought he was getting that pot, but when I showed him my JJ he knew that he'd over played it.
There were 19,000 chips in that pot and two hands later I bagged them up. They'll be there waiting for me at the Rio at 3. Right now I'm in 79th of 280. 80 spots pay.
After three day 2's let's hope I can make my first day 3!!!