Since I never read structure sheets even though I should, I didn't realize that they had a unique structure for the event.
Instead of just starting with your normal stack of three times the buy in, 4,500 in this case, you started with 1,500 chips at 25/50 with two "bullets." These are $5 tournament chips that represent two rebuys that you can take at any time during the first three levels regardless of chip count.
If you don't use them by then, you still receive 1,500 for each bullet after level three.
After I was done thinking about how badly I'm going to miss "real" rebuys tournaments, which have been eliminated from the WSOP schedule completely, it was time to figure our what my strategy should be here.
Normally in no-limit rebuy/add-on tournaments, even cubed (one rebuy, one add-on) tournaments, my strategy is to take all the rebuy and add-on I can at any given time.
However, due to my relative inexperience and the nature of PLO, I decided to take the cautious route and try to gamble one bullet at a time.
I ended up losing the first stack with top two against Eric Cajelais' straight draw with a flush draw. I started to chip up slowly to about 10k with one bullet left after that. In a limped-gone-crazy pot, I had A♥ 9♥ 7♣ 7♦ in the big blind on a 8h-6h-3d flop, and ended up getting it in against 5♥ 7♥ 6♣ 2♠ and A♣ 8♣ 6♣ 2♣.
After the Ad turn and 9s river, I lost the main pot but won a sidepot to almost break even. Now that I think about it, almost breaking even is a really boring story that I could have just skipped. Oh well, but look at how spicy that flop was for me!!! Drawing to the clean nuts with so many cards...
I also busted a PLO bracelet winnner, Alan Smurfit. Since poker is an easy game, I decided that not only was I going to cooler his K♠ K♣ 8♠ 6♣ with AdA♥ 10♣ 7♥, but I was also going to fade a flush draw and a king after a very unpleasant 4♠ 3♠ 4♣ flop. Eaaaaaaasy game...
I managed to keep crusing with a pretty healthy stack for most of the tournament, despite my relative inexperience in PLO. That is, of course, until I tried tried to run my first big bluff of the tournament. I gave up after taising preflop and firing two shells on the flop and turn, and was pretty shocked to see my opponent turn over second pair with no draw!
That's a reasonable hero call in hold'em, but in PLO...just wow...I got pretty owned there I guess...
I managed to make it into the money and into day two with a pretty short stack, and ended up getting it in with J♥ 9♥ 9♦ 8♦ against Q♠ Q♦ 7♠ 4♣ and whiffing a flush draw. I finished 64th out of 809 entrants for $3,247.
Normally I'd be disappointed with a similar finish in a hold'em event, I'm actually kind of proud of myself for cashing in my first live PLO tournament given my relative inexperience in the game.
I really enjoyed myself in this tournament and it was a great learning experience. I think you may see me taking more shots at PLO in the future...
But for now it's time to get back to some NL. Another tournament which I'm really excited about is coming up, Event 9: $1,500 NL six-handed. The fields for the $1,500 events are pretty weak since they're some of the smallest buy in events, and the shorthanded play magnifies their leaks and lets you play more pots with them. Should be a blast!
And congratulations to fellow PL.com blogger, a bona-fide sicko, and a buddy of mine, Jason Mercier who just took down the $1,500 PLO to add to the list of EPT events his crushed for huge scores. Ship the bracelet J-Merc-All-Star, now you can stop complaining that you don't know how to win in the USA!!!
"All In At 420"