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Lake Tahoe - 2017

I'm happy to report that we had an extremely successful trip to Lake Tahoe!  Not only was it as fun and beautiful as ever, but a couple players came home with some serious CA$H...  We even had a SimoneTeam first....someone came home a WSOP Champion!  Below is our trip report... 

From Robert Madrid: (BurroGuapo)

I want to thank Chris for putting together these online series of tournaments and hosting the live tournaments at his home.  They are always a good time.  I appreciate the opportunity he gives us to play in the WSOP events. 

This was the first WSOP event I’ve played in.  Before this, the biggest tournaments I played in were at Garden City (I didn’t play in many, but I cashed more than not).   Once Garden City closed, pretty much stuck to house games that were primarily cash.  


Needless to say I was looking forward to playing in my first WSOP event.  I played on day 1C with a field of about 250 players.  I got to my seat about 10 minutes late, and when I was walking up, I saw the cards being dealt and I was under the gun.  I rushed to my seat and sat down to pocket tens.  Blinds started at 25/50.  I felt a little rushed since I was late and first to act, so I grabbed 2 chips from the top of my stack and raised.  I was surprised how quick everyone folded to a minimum raise.  Then the person next to me asked if I knew I tossed thousand dollar chips in when I raised.  Major fail, but at least I came out ahead on that hand.   After that I was card dead for several hours.  I was able to win a few small pots just to stay alive. 


I didn’t have very many memorable hands that day, but I did see pocket aces get cracked by a guy trying to bluff on the flop.  At this point blinds were at 100/200.  Seat five was chip leader with about 30k in chips and he was  1st to act and raised to 700.  He got 1 caller from the button who had about 17k in front of him.  The flop was King, 3, 9.  Seat five bets 1500 and the button shoved all in.   Seat five instantly called.  Seat five flips over pocket aces, the button flips over 7, 8 off suit.  The table was pretty shocked at the move by the button.  So the dealer turns a 7 then rivers another 7.  Seat 5 was extremely upset to say the least, while the button didn’t say a word and the table was stunned.


Later in the tournament I was down to about 7k in chips while the blinds and antes kept increasing.  I was forced to go all in with a suited King Jack of diamonds under the gun.  I got 1 call from the same guy who cracked the aces with running 7s.  He flipped over pocket jacks.  I flopped a King and it held up.  The funny thing was that the guy who lost was so upset that I won.  He was going on how he always loses with the best hand, and how he never wins, and so on.  Majority of the table had to remind him of his running 7s earlier in the day, but he wasn’t trying to hear it. 


Anyhow, unfortunately that was my last wining hand of the tournament.  I got knocked out later that evening with about 70 players left for the day.  I did go play a sit & go right after and won $380, so the day didn’t feel like a loss. 


I really enjoyed my 1st WSOP event and hope to make a better run next time I play.  Thanks again to Chris for setting the satellites up.   I’ll be looking forward playing and hopefully making the final table again!   

From Chris Simone:

I had been running pretty well lately and was really looking forward to heading up to Tahoe to see what kind of damage I could do up there this year.  The large $365 event during the first weekend had 3 different starting days (Thurs/Fri/Sat).  In total, there were 513 entries.  You could play in any/all of those Day1 events if you wanted in an attempt to make it to Day2 (Sunday).  I started in the Thursday Day 1 event.  For this Day1, there were 106 entries.  I managed to fight my way through the day which lasted 18 levels (9 hours of poker).  At the end of the day, we were down to just 10 players and we were all guaranteed to be in the money!  I was 3rd in chips for the day (started with $10k and I ended the day with $176k).  This meant that I would not need to play in the Friday or Saturday starting flights for this event as I was already guaranteed a spot in Day2 on Sunday.  When Day 2 Sunday rolled around, there was a combined total of 42 players out of 513 remaining.  I started the day in 8th place which was a good spot to be.  During most of the day I was in good shape continuing to build my stack, picking my spots carefully.  I'm happy to report that I once again made it to a Final Table :-)    At the final table I had close to an average stack.  I was up and down a bit and was waiting for some smaller stacks to get picked off so I could climb in the prize money.  When we were down to 7 players I was getting short stacked and had around 8-9 big blinds left.  I was looking for a good spot to get my chips all-in.  In early position I look down at A8 suited and decide it's time to push.  It folded around the table to the button who was holding KK and he moved all-in.  We went head's up to the flop and I was happy to see an Ace!  Unfortunately, he caught his 2 outer King on the turn and my tournament was over.  7th place paid $4579 which was a nice payday...

On Friday and Saturday I played in two one-day WSOP ring events.  In each event they had about 150 players.  I played well and finished in 32nd place in one and 24th place in the other.  Fairly deep, but not quite to the money.  During the off hours I played in some cash games and managed to do pretty well there, so overall it was a very successful trip!

From Jonathan Libiran: (Triskelion)

Winning Chris' Simone Team Poker promotion got me very excited.  My wife reminded me that I always do well in Lake Tahoe.  Hopefully this year would be more of the same.  I couldn't get there earlier in the weekend, so I arrived on Sunday and played in WSOP Ring Event#5.  There were a total of 149 entries in this 2 day event.  When I got to the tournament area I was nervous but focused.  My plan was to set small goals...Beat the players on my 1st table, break that table.  Go to the next, and the next.  I played solid poker during the tournament.  I stole some blinds here and there but refrained from any big bluffs.  I clawed my way through Day 1 and I made it to the Final Table (Day 2)!  

When I reached the final table I had some good reads against most of the other players, except for the chip leader who I had yet to play against.  I quickly realized that he was playing bully poker and was using his big stack to push people out of pots.  I grinded it out until we were finally down to just 3 players.  The blinds were $10k/$20k with a $4000 ante and I was down to just $76,000.  Picking just the right spots I was able to double up 3 times in a row and my stack grew to over $600,000!  I was now 2nd in chips with just 3 players remaining. 3 hands later came the hand of the night.  The button folded.  The chip leader was the small blind with about $600k in chips.  He raised to $58k.  I was in the big blind and I looked down at pocket Kings!  Wow!!  He's been stealing and pushing people around all night and this was my chance.  I decided to flat call his bet.  The flop came Q82 rainbow...a great flop for me!  He bet out $81,000 and I just called.  The turn came a 5 and he pushed all-in.  I instantly call and he turns over 8,3.  He was in shock when he saw my kings and I wiped him out!  I now was head's up and had about $1.2m in chips against the other player who had $220k.  We played for just 7 hands.  I went all-in with K9 offsuit and he called with Q4 offsuit and my hand held up!  I can't believe it.....I WON A WSOP RING!!!  Click HERE to take a look!  It was also a very nice $12,500 1st place payout!

Overall, the experience was beyond AWESOME.  When the last card peeled off and I saw that I had won the event I didn't know what to do!  Should I scream?  Should I jump out of my chair?  lol...  I just went to an empty table and sat there for a few minutes and soaked it all in.  What a great feeling!  Following that there was an interview with the WSOP and some photos and I was presented with my first WSOP championship ring!  Amazing!

Side note: Jeremy Lordge (Jerms) also made it to the final table and was knocked out in 8th place for a nice payday....well done Jeremy!  Would have been interesting if we had gotten head's up!

What an amazing time!  I'm super excited for Jonathan who won a championship WSOP ring.  Who's ready to join us for our next big WSOP event in Las Vegas in June 2018?  Be sure to register for our new Las Vegas Simone Team Poker Promo#20 HERE


Jonathan Libiran  (Triskelion)

won a WSOP Ring!

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