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I'm Not Going to Quit - Q&A with Kelly Kim

by Pro Blog |  Published: Jul 14, '08


Kelly KimTensions are high as the remaining 10 players in the 2008 World Series of Poker main event anxiously sweat their way through the final table bubble. The player who is arguably feeling the heat more than others is Kelly Kim, who entered the final table bubble as the tournament short stack.

Card Player caught up with Kelly Kim during a break in bubble play to discuss his strategy for securing his spot at the final table.

Alex Porter:
How are you sitting in chips?

Kelly Kim: I'm really short. I have 3.2 million, so I'm definitely the shortest, probably by double. I didn't come here to quit, so I hope to catch a hand and move in after a raise. That would be optimal if it held. My "M" is getting small. I think it's down to about five or six, if that. I obviously need to get lucky, but who says I can't?

I'm a little discouraged because the writing's on the wall. I'm definitely a dog to finish better than 10th, but anything can happen. It's poker. I'm not going to quit.

AP: Although this specific situation is undoubtedly unique, have you ever been in a precarious short stack situation before?

KK: Obviously I've never been in a situation of this magnitude. The first tournament I ever won was a smaller live tournament about three years ago. I was the shortest at the final table, with only about 3% of the chips in play. I don't think I even have that now, but anything can happen.

AP: Does the weight of what's at stake affect your strategy?

KK: I don't want to get it in bad. That's number one. I need to pick a spot and hopefully my hand will hold. Whatever happens will happen. My fate will be sealed. I'm looking forward to the anticipation of it all. It's tough! I'm feeling the pressure, probably more than anyone else there because of my chip stack.

It's almost like a super satellite because once you get to the final nine you get four months off. It's completely different now, because people aren't playing to win yet. They're playing to finish ninth or better, because it's over once someone gets out. The whole situation's going to be different because people are supposed to play tighter. I really need to catch a hand. That's pretty much the bottom line.

AP: How much experience have you had with your current competition?

KK: Actually, it's weird. I haven't really played much with this group. The only one I've played a lot with is Dennis. We played on the same table either on day three or four. It's been so many days that I don't really remember. He's pretty solid.

Today I played with a lot of different players. I don't really have much information on any of these players. I'm going to have to just sit tight and hope for the best. That's the best I can do.

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