Archive Dec 2007: The Watts Blog

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Quick 2007 Year in Review

I kind of don't feel like writing a big long year in review, so I'm going to do the cliffs notes version instead. I started the year with basically a $50K roll online not counting the money I won live over WSOP that I didn't want to touch, and a PCA seat. In 2006 I had pretty decent success at the bigger tournaments online and had started learning 3/6 and 5/10 NL cash games online with a lot of initial success. Enter 2007, here's a post I made from 2+2 in an end of year reflection thread with some grammar fixed and extra details added:

Man what a sick year I had.... I started the year playing most of the big online tournaments and having a lot of success learning cash games playing 3/6 and 5/10 NL on like a 50K roll. I continued to do well in those games and also started shortstacking 25/50 and killing it. I was running good and winning pretty big, and I also had a few 20-25K tournament scores. Then I began taking shots with timex shortstacking nosebleed cash games on Full Tilt. Initially we just crushed the games, but we eventually went on a big downswing and quit as the players were adjusting, but still finished up pretty huge overall. During this time I had also moved up to fullstacking 10/20 and 25/50 cash games when they were good and continued to run really hot. Next, the World Series came and I didn't do anything great despite having a bunch of cashes, but I won Super Tuesday online for $75K while I was there.

When I got home from WSOP I decided I just couldn't deal with grad school anymore and there was no way I could finish. I dropped out and grinded 25/50 on Cake back before all the 2+2ers invaded when the games were really soft. I immediately put in a +$200K month, and decided this going pro thing was pretty ok. Since then I've basically just been losing a lot, but I'm still so far ahead of where I ever thought I'd be on the year that it's hard to be too upset. My goals for 2008 include breaking out of 0/17 slump in 5K+ buy-in events, first 6-figure tournament score, win anything on a Sunday, get back to putting in more cash hands, and the usual trying to live a bit more healthily. Monetary goals are kind of foolish since all you can really control is how well you play and the variance is pretty big (especially playing so many big buy-in live events). Also, you never how good the online games will stay as time progresses, but that being said, I'd like to make a million this year.

Mike

Sunday: $100K bubbles and Aussie sats

This week's Sunday heartbreak comes from a new source! Pokerstars added a $5K 20-player winner-take-all tournament which I decided to give a shot. I'm an idiot and haven't fixed my laptop so I couldn't play Party Poker, and I couldn't deposit money onto some of the European sites I've started playing on either since I was in the US. That left a lot of open screen space early in the day when I'd usually play Eurodonkaments so this seemed to fit in the schedule pretty well. The field didn't look too bad, it was definitely pretty tough but there were some soft spots and most of the real top tier players weren't in it. I got off to a very slow start but as we closed in on the final 10 players I started making some hands and picking up a lot of chips. I won a couple huge pots against JCarver (taknapotin) when I flopped big hands. In the first he mistimed a big bluff and in the 2nd he ended up folding the river after putting in a fair number of chips against my flopped set.

Things were going well as we got to 4-handed play but I lost a key pot where I slowplayed QQ preflop just calling a reraise from TheCleaner, who would prove to be my nemesis. An A flopped, and when he checked the flop to me I knew I was in trouble. He bet the turn blank pretty strong and although I had expected him to bluff the flop with most hands I beat, I didn't really know his game that well and I decided folding such a strong hand for one barrel was too weak, and called. He decided to check the river so I got to see his AT. This hand really killed my momentum and I was shortstacked shortly thereafter as he was really attacking my blinds hard and I couldn't find much to defend with. I got lucky to suck out on the river with my KJ vs his KQ and then finally got action on a couple of my bigger hands against the other player (Rickiee I think?), winning AT vs A8 and AK vs A2 all-in preflop. I was still way behind heads up though and never got much going. I got as close as 35K to 65K but he played very well and I was probably a little unlucky also to not get much action when I had a hand. He ground me down and I ended up resorting to some really risky bluffs to try to hold my ground. In the end I moved in on one of his raises with KTs even though I felt he had switched gears and was not planning to fold to my push. I figured I wasn't in too bad shape against his range and I was so far behind and nothing was working that I'd rather just gamble to try to get some chips (of course my read could always be wrong also). He called with AQ and I outflopped him but he rivered an A for the win. Tough guy to run into HU, I'm told he's a very good Dutch midstakes HU cash player and he got the best of me. Anyways the exciting part of for me and all of you I guess is that the final table of this tournament will be replayed with hole cards of all players exposed, presumably some time during this week. So keep an eye out for that and we'll find out how badly I got owned or if he was just running good.

I had a few deep runs in some of the Sunday majors but no major cashes. I did however finally win a seat to the Aussie Millions main event. I've been playing the satellites on Full Tilt and Cake every Sunday for this and Stars finally started running some this week as well. I still run pretty ok in major satellites on Stars apparently as I won the seat on my first try. The play was really incredibly bad, it was kind of shocking. I'm used to playing against weak players who have won seats into these bigger buy-in satellites through small stakes subsatellites, but a lot of these guys were just on a whole different level of bad. Open shoving 10 times the pot with Q9o preflop in MP fairly late in the tournament bad (I obviously luckboxed into picking up KK to take the donation). So this saved my day more or less. Anyways I'm stranded in the airport for now, my flight is super late because of all the snow in Toronto. I thought it was only 5 hours late but it's actually going to be at least 7. Vegas was a lot of fun as always, but I think Australia is going to be even better.

Mike

Bellagio Tournament Voice Blog - Dec 17th 2007

Busto

Spent more time on the colour up to start the day than I actually played in the tournament. I folded a bit, moved in once, and was down to 7700 when the CO open shoved for 10K (still 400/800 a100). I called with AQo OTB and then the BB overcalled. CO had KQo, BB 99 and the nines held. Oh well I'm Vegas for the weekend, could be worse. I'll probably party a bit and play online. Home for Christmas soon!

Mike

Bellagio Five Diamond ME -- 12.3K for Day 2

Today was up and down, but overall pretty poor. I don't feel like running through all the hands again right now. My level by level chip count went 30K--->22K--->11K--->22K--->20K--->12K. I got dealt a ton of premium pairs but either got them beat or won small pots with them mostly, and I think every time I put chips in the pot preflop once the antes kicked in without a premium hand it got reraised behind me, it was really frustrating. I likely made several smallish mistakes throughout the day but avoided any outright blunders, so at least I still have some chips.

Here's the voice blog I left at the end of the day.

Mike
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