How I busted the ME and final thoughts WSOP 2019

I’ll explain how I got knocked out of the 2019 WSOP ME then provide some other thoughts about the ME, poker, and life…

Sitting down at the table for day 2, I was clearly the short stack, only one other player had a similar sized stack as myself. Knowing this and the fact that it wasn’t going to be until late in day 3 to get into the money, I knew I had my work cut out for me…We started day 2 in level 6 with the blinds 400/800/800. I started the day with about 37k.

After a couple hours of very few playable hands, my stack went down to about 30k. With a few minutes left in the level I was dealt 10 10 on the button. It was folded around to the player on my right who raised to 2100. In his position I would expect him to raise with a lot of hands, and only having played at this table for a couple hours, I wasn’t sure how he played. I decided to reraise to 7k leaving myself with about 23k. It folded back to the player on my right who had a much larger stack than myself and after thinking for a little bit he put me all in. Hoping to be in coin flip situation and having already committed a majority of my stack, I called.

Unfortunately, he tabled AA and I was going to have to get lucky to stay in the tournament. I couldn’t get lucky and I was knocked out. The flop was all low cards which leads me to believe that even if I just called his pre flop raise, it would be really hard to get away from my hand post flop.

It’s disappointing to get knocked out of the Main in such a dominated way, but I guess there is really no good way to go out. Watching one of the best players in the world, Daniel Negreanu bust out in a similar fashion (JJ vs AA, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZVaJjhW5-yE ) offers some encouragement. However, I can’t help but still think about the hand I played at the end of day 1.

Tournament poker is really hard. I compare it to being a baseball player. If you have a .300 hitting average, you’re considered a good hitter. Usually you are going to get out. Most of the hits are singles, some doubles, a few triples, some home runs and once in awhile a grand slam. Tournament poker is similar in that usually you are going to get out, sometimes you will only cash for the minimum and once in awhile you hit a home run or even a grand slam. Just because you never hit a grand slam in your career doesn’t make you a bad player, it’s simply situational. However, you know the more opportunities you get, the more likely you’ll hit a home run or even a grand slam.

My overall thoughts about the WSOP are as follows…The WSOP is such a cool event. Players from all over the country and the world come to Vegas every year to compete. I understand that putting on an event like this is extremely difficult, but I wish it was a little more player friendly. All tournaments should be run on set schedules with a reasonable amount of time for a lunch (if applicable) and a dinner break with no changes made day of. I think 8 hours of actual poker play in one day is reasonable. I noticed that in some WSOP schedules they “play down” to a certain number of players. This doesn’t make much sense to me. Just pick a set number of hours to play each day. It’s possible that it could take days to “play down” to a certain number of players. I could go on but i’ll save it for another time.

Playing poker for a living is extremely stressful. It’s really difficult to go to work and sometimes lose money. However, if it was easy everyone would do it, right? Also, there aren’t many jobs where you can be your own boss, have a flexible schedule, and be able to travel the country and the world. So for now, I still feel good about what i’m doing and don’t plan on becoming a doctor or lawyer like most other Jewish folks :)) I would love to continue traveling like in previous years and may plan a trip soon.

That’s all for now. Thanks for reading and especially thanks to anyone that invested in me for the Main. It was really encouraging that the hard work and good will I have put into poker and the community has been noticed. Comments/questions/suggestions are really encouraged. I would love positive and negative feedback. Hope you are running good on and off the felt!

-Ben