Friday, May 09, 2008

Poker tournament: no skill required

Tulalip's 10:30 a.m. tournament structure is the worst I've yet to come across. You start with only 1000 chips, and the rounds are 15 minutes long. Blinds start at 25/50 and go up 25 and 50 each round. That's bad enough, but here's the weak kicker: only four rounds, and then two hands, then the four largest chip stacks are paid.

Moreso than any other tournament, in this one it's critical to build your stack fast. I did a mediocre job of this, and am still questioning if I should have called a caller and the blinds with 33 in middle position. I didn't; it would've incresed my stack by about 20%.

After the four rounds, I was in the final 12 (out of 45), and when I proposed a 10-way split, the regulars shrugged me off as if I was a loony. I got dealt K5 under the gun, and folded it. Three players got knocked out, the final 9 went to the final hand, the three biggest stacks folded, and everyone else went all in. The winner of the all-in fest (not me) cashed 4th.

This tournament requires very little skill. Push high pairs. Call with two paint cards. Get a lucky flop. That's about it.

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