WSOP Colossus experience

Reports & Blogs by DapPoker Posted

I had posted a series of posts on this over in the AVP section under the title "nit life". I played cash games at Bally's here in Vegas for a bit because I do fairly well there and because they had a promotion with their weekly freeroll that gave away 4 seats each week to the WSOP Colossus. I was lucky enough to win one of those seats and I played in Flight 1E yesterday starting at 10AM. Here's my experience.

Unfortunately, I was card dead all day. I think in the first 4 levels, I voluntarily put money into 3 pots. We started with 5,000 chips and the structure for the first 18 levels played on day 1 was as follows:

1 = 25/50
2 = 50/100
3 = 25 ante and 75/150
4 = 25 ante and 100/200
5 = 50 ante and 150/300
6 = 50 ante and 200/400
7 = 75 ante and 250/500
8 = 75 ante and 300/600
9 = 100 ante and 400/800
10 = 100 ante and 500/1,000
11 = 200 ante and 600/1,200
12 = 200 ante and 800/1,600
13 = 300 ante and 1,000/2,000
14 = 400 ante and 1,200/2,400
15 = 500 ante and 1,500/3,000
16 = 500 ante and 2,000/4,000
17 = 500 ante and 2,500/5,000
18 = 500 ante and 3,000/6,000

These were 30 minute levels, so it was a fast structure for a WSOP event. As you can imagine, getting nothing early, I was a pretty short stacked by the time we got to level 5, even though I had managed a double up with AJ vs KJ on a J-4-4 flop. But, as Teddy KGB put it in Rounders, I kept "hanging around, hanging around."

During level 7, I got moved to a new table in the Brazilia room and had a handful of fairly aggressive players at my table. With my short stack, this handcuffed me because it was almost never unopened to me in late position, which meant I very rarely had any steal opportunities. Also, I was so short that after a raise, I had no fold equity, so I had no chance to re-steal, I had to have a hand with some possibility to be best or make the best hand because even a shove from me was going to get called by at least the initial raiser.

That said, I kept playing short stack ninja, and managed to hang around with a few well timed pushes, most of them with good aces from early to mid position that went uncalled. I did build my stack a bit with one of my rare late position opportunities when I shoved with 4-4 -- unfortunately, the small blind was a really short stack and called with J-3 and hit a jack for the main pot, which was probably about 60% of the total pot. I also chopped when I ran AK into another AK -- still got some of the blind and ante money there, which helped my tiny stack.

Finally, I got a double up opportunity when I had AQ suited. An early position player who was aggressive, and at that time, a really big stack, raised to 2.5 big blinds. He got a call and I shoved for about 10 big blinds. He re-shoved to isolate and the other guy folded. The original raiser had Q-10 suited and my unimproved ace high took the pot. The guy's re-shove apparently saved me because the guy who folded claimed he had 4-4.

Shortly after that, I got 7-7 and was able to make a normal raise from early position, I got 2 callers from the blinds and flopped a set on a J-7-3 rainbow board. I bet about half pot and got called by the small blind. Turn was an ace and after he checked, I shoved. I read him as strong, but he must have had a hand like KK or QQ because he folded and said "I wish I had put you all in on the flop." After that hand, I was at my peak chip stack for the day -- about 32,000. Of course we were on level 11 (200 ante and 600/1,200), so my stack still wasn't exactly "healthy", but it was at least playable.

Then, I went back to being card dead. Through all of level 12, 13 and 14, I saw 2 playable hands. I had A-7 off, which I open shoved on the button and took the blinds and antes and I had J-9 offsuit in UTG+3 facing a UTG raise for most of my stack, which I folded. On level 14, I considered a 3 bet resteal with 4-6 suited, but the original raiser was UTG and had been playing fairly solid. I was so short stacked that I had no fold equity and I was only UTG +3, so there were still 6 players to act. I don't think it was the right spot, but it was the only close decision I had for those 3 levels.

Other than that, I had complete garbage and just kept folding. However, while my chip stack kept dwindling, I managed to stay alive and other people didn't. So, not only did I manage a cash, I hung on through a couple of pay bumps. Ultimately we got to level 15 (500 ante and 1,500/3,000), and I was down to 6,000 chips and in the big blind -- I was literally going all in with any 2 cards. A somewhat grumpy and arrogant player looked at my stack and asked what I had behind, I said "I've got 25 behind". He said "that's not 25,000" and I replied "no it's 2,500". He then said "that's not a lot" and raised. I joked "Sir, I haven't had a lot all day, so why is this any different?" The table (except him) laughed. Needless to say, I went all in for less than his raise. Actually, I was in a coin flip -- he had 6-6 and I had Q-9 of hearts. But he flopped a set with only 1 heart on board and after a turn brick, I was drawing dead. I had asked the dealer for a turn heart for at least a sweat, but it wasn't meant to be. As I was waiting for the payout clerk, I wished the whole table good luck and I said that the table was going to be a lot less fun without me there, but that they should try to enjoy the experience.

So, I had a lot of fun. I played the best that I was able to given my cards and the players at my table. And in my first ever World Series bracelet event, I managed a decent cash of $1,136. It isn't life changing, but considering I won the seat and it was a freeroll, I'm really happy with it.



  1. Official results are in. I placed in 1,869th out of 21,613.

  2. And Rob, I wouldn't be crazy enough to play the main event. That's way, way out of my budget even with significant backing. Any tourney I play in, I want to have the vast majority of my own action. So, barring some crazy satellite win, this will probably be my last bracelet event this year. Who know what next year might bring though...


  3. Excellent post Dave. Nice run. I have a hard time being patient when card dead. So congrats.

  4. Nice post, Dave and gg! I just got back.

  5. Thanks Swager and Papafafa! Papafafa, I hope you had fun and won some money out here!

    I really did my best to stay patient (it can be a failing of mine) and not get stuck in my own head (an even bigger failing of mine) with how bad my card were and how lousy I have been running the past few weeks.

    Laughing and joking at the table really helped -- I laughed about being a bad player; I joked that I was used to having a short stack because I suck at "real poker decisions"; I cracked wise about being short on chips so often that I had become a short stack ninja. With all of that, I may well have had more fun anyone in the Brasilia Room. And why not??? I was playing poker for a million dollars and living every poker player's dream of playing for a WSOP bracelet -- and I was doing it on a freeroll. Shit, if I can't have fun doing that on a complete freeroll, then there is something really damn wrong with me.


    P.S. People who know me will tell you there is something really damn wrong with me, but whatever that is, it's something else because I had a bunch of fun.

  6. So you're telling me you ran bad but yet finished 1869 damn good work man. I was thinking of going out to it but I didn't like the starting stack so I'm heading out June 22 for the Goliath Monster stack at planet Hollywood wish me luck haha