I had a good time. My losing streak is still intact, although I didn't lose one ounce of sleep for a few reasons. The first reason is that there were 49 losers and 8 winners, so I didn't really expect to win. Furthermore, I wasn't even dealt enough hands to get into enough pots to make any mistakes. All I really did was fold some crappy hands, so I can't be upset about my play. I can handle bad cards...bad play keeps me up at night.
Early on, I made the broadway straight and eliminated a players with A's and 10's. That doubled me up to nearly $800. There weren't many exciting hands after that for me. Once I reluctantly completed my small blind to have the worst possible thing happen - I connected on the flop. So I put money in the pot on 3rd and 4th street, but had to run away on the river when the River Chie bet big to the board showing both a flush and a straight. That cut my stack in half.
I spent four and a half hours with Matt 2 places to my right. Ergo, everytime he was on the button, I was on the big blind. I think Matt raised every single time he was on the button. It was a good thing he did, because he knocked me off the blind over and over. Once I noticed the pattern, I decided to defend. However, I don't typically defend with 58o and that was about the best hand I saw in that position. I make a living in these tournaments by "hiding in the weeds" and seeing flops for cheap/free and betting the bejeezus out of my hand when I hit. Matt never let me see the flop for cheap. The few times Matt took a nap, the River Chief would raise 5x the BB. The table I was at did not suit my strategy. Matt took half my chips and deserved every one of them.
When we finally moved tables, I was dealt ATs and called an all-in bet from KK. I could only have stuck around maybe 30 more minutes and seeing as how ATs was the best hand I got over the past 4 hours, I figured it was worth a shot at doubling up. I didn't win.
What was the same about this tournament compared to the previous 5 were:
1) lots of nice guys - everybody was easy to get along with; no arguments
2) the blind structure did not allow luck to overwhelm skill (as Morris stated)
What was different? One thing, in my opinion: The quality of players was up 200%. It was no WSOP, but we used to get like 3 fools for every real player. I only know of one bad player yesterday. Maybe there were more, but not much. The playing field has leveled some.
I am wondering if we should stick with the current format of 56 x $100 or switch to 28 x $200. It is a lot of work to get a 56 man tournament together, but 28 would be pretty easy. Hmmm.
Sorry I can't go on for longer, but I am at a conference and am very busy. Read the website for any further insights.
One more thing: the mailbox was full of "Thank you's" and "Good Jobs" and "The best!" and other such wishes. John and I appreciate the support. Trust me, we ain't doing it for our health, we really like those well-wishes. I will see everyone next year.