WSOP Event #22 No Limit Hold'Em: Greenstein Loses a Race

As far as I could tell, Team PokerStars' Barry Greenstein's stack didn't move much during the last couple of levels (maybe 1500 or so more), but Barry just stopped into the PokerStars suite, and gave me a recap of a pretty big hand that happened before the break.

Check me out, as I totally scoop Cardplayer:

"I lost a race," he said. Then, "Well, it wasn't exactly a 50-50 race, but it was still very close.

"I'd been playing a lot of hands, and I could feel that this guy was itching to get into a pot with me. I raised him in position for 1K with king jack of clubs, and he came back over the top of me for 2600. I had great odds to call, especially if he had an underpair to my cards, so I called, expecting a race.

He turned up ATo, which is actually closer than you'd think it is -- 55 to 45, or pretty close to that and . . . hey, do you want to run it?"

"Sure," I said. "Let's take a look."

Barry sat down on the couch next to me, and we fired up the poker odds calculator at twodimes.net.

I put in the hands, and it came back:

//twodimes.net/h/?z=1830736
pokenum -h kc jc - ad th
Holdem Hi: 1712304 enumerated boards
cards win %win lose %lose tie %tie EV
Kc Jc 751536 43.89 953545 55.69 7223 0.42 0.441
Ad Th 953545 55.69 751536 43.89 7223 0.42 0.559
Barry nodded his head.

"Wow. You were dead on," I said.

"Yeah, and if he has a card less than ten, it drops even more."

(Note: after Barry walked out of the suite, I ran that hand, too: he was right. Pretend to be surprised.)

"You still have chips though, right?"

"Yeah, I have about 9000, and average is probably around 6000."

He was as calm and steady as I've ever seen, and it's a good lesson for aspiring poker players, especially tournament players: He was getting great odds to call, figured them correctly, and missed his hand. A lot of players would be on some sort of tilt here (I know I would) and would be beating themselves up for making what would probably be regarded by railbirds as a loose call, even though it really wasn't. But this is the mark of a professional player: He's still above average, knows that he has room to maneuver, and is certainly capable of turning them into a big stack.

Barry and the rest of the players are on a dinner break, and play will resume around 8:15 pm. Somehow, I have to grab a bit of a nap, because I haven't paced myself at all today, (I am finding stories faster than I can write down notes about them; forget about posting the actual tales in the blog) and I'm falling down. I have 6d12+8 more respect for Pauly and Otis now than I did before.

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in World Series of Poker