I’ve had a crazy last 36 hours during which I went from being almost entirely certain I wasn’t playing the Main Event to bagging up chips for day two.
4:00 pm Wednesday
I put $100 on a 7-team baseball parlay to win $10,500. I was already up a bunch from betting Spain against Germany, so figured I’d give a bill back and try to luckbox my way into the Main Event. I text a couple of friends telling them which seven teams I need to run hot with, including Ray Coburn (Exitonly), who asks me why I don’t just sell pieces of my action on the 2p2 marketplace. “Hmm… I actually hadn’t thought of that, but I have no way of getting a bunch of Stars money into the Rio cage on such short notice anyway.”
“No worries,” he says, “I’ve got plenty of cash and need money online. I can give you an instant cashout.”
Huh. You don’t say?
When my baseball parlay seems to have no legs, I text a couple of friends to see if they’d buy any Main Event action at a rate of 1% for $125. I get an overwhelming response and even sell a few shares to 2009 Card Player POY Eric Baldwin (basebaldy). “Hmm… maybe this could actually work,” I think.
I call a friend and dictate a post to make on the 2p2 marketplace (I was away from computer). He tells me I can’t post in that forum until I get moderator approval. Dang, big snag. I text Ray wondering if he has any advice on how to get around that. “PM the forum mod,” he says. My friend does that on my behalf.
After a short wait, my friend texts me to say that I’ve been approved to post in the forum. Sweet! The post is up and strangers from all over the world are checking out my Hendon Mob database and contemplating whether or not they have any interest in buying my action.
I’ve sold a lot of action and playing in the tournament is starting to look quite viable. My friend Sebastien Sabic (Seb86) offers to buy a decent-sized chunk. Sold. Only need around $3,500 more. That’s doable, right?
I get home from dinner with a friend and sell a few shares to my roommate. Only need to raise about $2,500 more to play, but there’s just 12 hours left to get the money and I’ve hit up most of my go-to sources. I go to bed totally uncertain if I’ll be playing the next day and hoping to wake up to emails about Stars transfers.
8:30 am Thursday
I wake up fairly early knowing there’s work to do in order to get into the tournament. I raised $500 while I was sleeping. Okay, just $2,000 more to go. It would be a shame to get this close and not play. I leave for the Panorama Towers to pick up some cash from Ray while continuing to hit up potential investors.
Ray hooks me up with two $5,000 Rio chips in the parking lot of Panorama. I thank him profusely for everything he’s done to help get me into the tournament. He’s still half-asleep and heads back upstairs. I wonder if he’ll even remember giving me $10k.
Another $1,000 sold to two friends.
I get to the Rio and head to the cashier’s cage to register for the Main Event. Even though I have about $1,000 more I’d like to come up with, I figure there’s no way I’m going to get that close and not play, so I go ahead and register.
While eating a salad wrap in the poker kitchen, I field posts on 2p2 and PokerTips and sell off more action. $9,625 raised. That’s good enough. I close the sale.
Emmitt Smith announces ‘Shuffle Up and Play’. What? It’s ‘Shuffle Up and Deal’, Emmitt. Five yard penalty.
My table is absurdly tight and passive.
Table breaks. Bad beat.
Oh but wait… new table is just as tight and passive, if not moreso. Everyone, and I mean everyone, is playing tight and all pots are really small. This is fine by me – I can push them around in small pots and know that I won’t be in any spots where it makes sense to play a big pot light.
Lebron James announces he’s going to the Miami Heat and the room erupts with chatter. A few guys at my table begin to hypothesize with significant confidence what Lebron’s reasons for going to Miami are. “Like they really have any clue,” I think.
I leave for dinner break with 27k (from a 30k starting stack). Not ideal, but hard to expect to have a ton of chips at a table where no one is making any mistakes in big pots.
I spot ESPN commentator Norm Chad walking by our table and get his attention to ask him if it ever gets boring just wandering around the WSOP all day. “Yes, but I self-medicate,” he tells me. He makes small talk with a couple people at our table and asks me if this is my first Main Event. “Nah,” I tell him. “Do you remember Michael Carroll catching a three-outter in 2008?”
“Yea, AJ vs. KJ or something like that.”
“Yea, exactly! I was the anonymous victim in that hand.”
“I remember that. Brutal!” He says with a surprising amount of empathy.
12:00 am midnight
Disappointed, I bag up 18.4k after losing several small pots in the last hour. I was the most aggressive player at the table, but it just never paid off for me; I never flopped any big hands that people paid off light because of my image. For that matter, I didn’t hit many flops at all and, apparently, everyone was hitting flops against me. That or maybe they were playing ABC poker against each other all day but coming out of their shells and out-playing me.
I go to bed utterly exhausted from a wild 36 hours feeling slightly agitated at the number of chips I’ll take into day two on Saturday but mostly grateful and appreciative that the stars aligned in order for me to play as well as optimistic about my chances for turning things around in a tournament where there’s certainly ample time provided to do just that.