on wednesday mornings, lucky chances runs a $45 buy-in 7-card stud tourney. as is usual during this trip, i am wearing a poker baseball cap (today it's one from the biloxi grand poker room) and my green satin tropicana jacket. as soon as i walk into the casino, i am accosted by a tall, solidly-built leather-jacketed young man with wire-rimmed glasses, a diamond ear stud and a shaven head. "is 'presto' the magic word?" he asks. i start to laugh. "it sure is. who are you?" it's my colleague-at-law jeff wilder, who is now the proud owner of a new tropicana jacket of his own!! wtg jeff!! he correctly guessed that i'd test my luck at the 7-stud tourney, and he's got a new windbreaker for his efforts! :)
there is no re-buy in this tourney, and we all start with T400. there are 41 entries, and since i haven't any idea who are the good players and who are the bad ones, i haven't any idea who my competition is! but, hey! i'm the stud expert, right? (yeahrightsure). starting limits are 10/20, and i see that some of the players at my table are ordinary run-of-the-mill maniacs (as tiger grins wolfishly).
i win a few hands at 10/20, but don't play a hand at 15/30. early rounds are 15 minutes each. at 30/60, i win a very big hand with rolled up queens when the bring-in pairs his deuce on 4th street (he had pocket kings, and we went to six bets on 5th street). i am the 2nd place chip leader at the first break. at 50/100, i steal the antes twice, and win a hand on 5th street at 100/200 with my high pair. at the 2nd break, i am the 3rd chip leader. we are down to 18 players at 300/600, and it doesn't take too long to get down to the final table (they will pay eight spots). there are four medium stacks (i am one), one huge monster stack, and three on the bubble.
in the first hand at the final table, i make a move with a queen up and pocket sevens. the bring-in small stack calls me all-in. she draws a seven on the river to make a straight to the eight. :::sigh::: i sit tight. we lose one player....then we lose another. i raise with split jacks and an ace in late position, and am called by the short stack. she gets a queen on 4th street and bets. i call. she makes a third suited card on 5th street, bets, and i throw it away. she had three overcards and four diamonds. :::sigh::: we lose another player. five players remaining. short stack suggests a deal between the four short stacks, conceding victory to the big stack. i say no. i raise with a (kq)10 all spades. a king calls, and so does the bring-in. on 4th street, the king bets all-in; bring-in calls, and i raise all-in after getting the jack of spades. the king had another one; the bring-in had pocket queens, and the winner of the pot was the pair of kings who made a wheel on the river. i go home now, in fifth place with a payoff of $100, which translates into a win of $55. i leave a five dollar bill for the dealers.
so now it's time to play some live big-league 3/6 stud. i know that i'm outclassed at this game, but i'm going to give it another try, anyhow. after losing one or two hands with big pairs, i find myself rolled up with deuces. seven, count 'em, seven people call my bring-in. i get an ace on 4th street, bet, and get seven, count 'em, seven callers. someone makes a running pair of queens on 5th street and bets. one caller; someone with a running pair of threes calls; another caller, and i raise. we're all the way down to six players now. on sixth street, my deuce falls on the queens, and the guy with the threes now has three of them. i give it up. threes full beats queens up. the game is as insane as any no fold 'em game i've ever seen. so i raise with (kj)q rainbow, and only get six callers. i make a tenspot on 4th street, and i'm committed to betting the hand all the way. i get raised by a maniac (which maniac, you ask? does it really matter??) showing kqj9 rainbow. he actually checks blind on the river, and i can't bet it when i get a nine. my king-high straight beats kings up. this game is nuts. whoever is high on board bets....perhaps someone raises at some point in the hand....and they all turn their hands over at the river to see who won the pot. one player has three open treys on 5th street and is raised by a player who has made running kings. the treys win the pot on the river with a straight to the six, which beats three kings. after being stuck two racks of grays, i make it all back, and actually book a small win for my live play. what a game!
tomorrow is thanksgiving, and i hope you all have a wonderful holiday! i'll seeya at the screwy 9/18 stud game at the oaks friday night!!