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FTOPS $1k recap with hand histories (Very Long)

by Shannon Shorr |  Published: Nov 19, '09

As I said in my last entry, I wanted to share some hands from my two deep FTOPS runs. This entry will include hands from the $1k FTOPS event that I finished 4th in. I'll try to follow early next week with some hands from the $2500 FTOPS. Again, I'm excited to contribute some poker content as I know y'all are tired of reading about my otherwise uneventful life. I'm not sure if the links are going to transfer to my blog feed on Cardplayer, so if you want to avoid having to copy and paste each link then visit my direct site at Each hand will be posted below my thoughts for that hand. I'll try to keep the analysis as reader-friendly and in as plain a language as possible. This hand was slightly interesting because it's fairly early. I'm not gonna open 42cc everytime unopened on the button, but this time I did. I didn't c-bet this flop because squirrely1 is a good young player and I just felt like he was gonna checkraise me a ton on K87. My turn bet makes sense because I can have an 8 here very often given my flop check (not to mention I turned a flush draw). I river magic and have an easy bet when checked to obviously. His checkraise on the end didn't make much sense. I guess he can show me 87s sometimes, but it definitely didn't feel like a line that was indicative of him having a higher flush. This is a cool, memorable hand. I opened 54ss and squirrely1 flatted me in position. When I bet this flop and he called I felt like he either flopped huge or was total floating me. I turn the absolute nuts and decided to just check call as he left himself a pot-sized bet. Leading all-in on the river looks way strong, so I checked, he moved in, and I quickcalled with the nuts. This one came up just a few hands after the last one. This player "4everunkown" had been opening a lot and playing pretty well. I decided to defend QTo. When he checks behind the flop I'm good almost all the time. The turn and river were less than desirable, and I felt like his 1.2x pot bet on the end was definitely one for value. He had been valuebetting very thin though, so I felt like he could definitely be value betting worse hands. I'm gonna get shown a five sometimes, but my hand is so under represented and, as I said I thought he could easily valuebet something like two tens. Here's a hand that was sorta whatever. Allen Cunningham got moved in and 4everunkown had continued to open a TON. Allen called and I splashed with 97cc from the SB. I flop a flush draw and I just checkraised Allen hoping he'd toss as it's hard for him to have a hand he can go with on this board. My plans were spoiled when 4everunkown took a very strange line and cold 3bet it. I felt there was a good chance he was totally full of shit, but I didn't really wanna play for all the chips, and he gave me such a good price that I can easily justify calling. The turn paired the Jack and he insta-checked behind. The river was an offsuit Ace. I felt like he was just waiting for me to bluff at him, so I just gave up. Multiway pot where I have a trivial call preflop and then just flop the world draw. The original raiser, an up and coming female player from Atlanta named Mer moves in for 1.3x pot, but I'm even money at the absolute worst, so I have an easy call. If peachy had checked, I would've had an easy CRAI had a now shorter-stacked "4everunkown" bet the flop. It turns out I was a 60/40 favorite and turned her dead. The following was a huge momentum hand where I full doubled through an excellent player and guy I really like named Brent "broberts85" Roberts. Here, I float the flop with a gutter to the nuts and the backdoor nut flush draw since Brent is going to be c-betting this flop the majority of the time regardless of his hand. I turn the absolute joker and it turns out it was the card Brent needed as well. He bets, I decided to raise small to leave room for him to shove, and he obliges with the second nuts. This one really baffled me. The guy who opened on the button had been incredibly tight and we were nearing the money in this event. I had been incredibly active, but here he loses it and 3bets all-in with no fold equity with A3 high. I call with two eights and my hand holds. Here's a whatever 3barrel bluff by me that I'm pretty sure I don't like. I wish I had researched this player 5 minutes earlier or I never would've attempted it despite us being near the bubble. It turns out it's an Asian female, and as a general rule that is a demographic I try to avoid 3barrel bluffing. I'd like this bluff a lot more if there weren't multiple draws on the flop (that all missed by the river). Still, I tip my hat as she made a fantastic call for all her chips on the bubble as I took a big hit to my stack. Here I have what is becoming more and more of a standard 21BB shove from the SB with 33 as the online game gets more and more aggressive. Raise/folding is just dumb, and my hand is strong enough that it's not a spew to just slam it all in there. I'm called by AJ and full double inside the money on a very, very scary board. Just four hands later I double up again after winning another race. I'd been so active that I just didn't wanna let go of two eights here in a 6max tournament like this that's so aggressive. I was called by AK but held. Here's another pot big pot I ship over to PrincessDonk to double her up. She opens to her standard minimum and I 3bet two tens. She called and we took KK7. She checked and I decided to control the pot by checking. I thought I could induce some bluffs from her too. She bets the turn, I call, and then she full pot moves in on the river. I planned on bluff catching against her because I just knew she wanted to spazz, but it turned out she did have KQ :( She's never ever gonna show me AK, so her hand is basically polarized to a total bluff or KQ or KJs. I'm not making this call against most players on the end, but it felt right here. Jared Okun had just gotten moved to our table, and here I'm lucky enough to pick up two red Aces against his open from up front. Fortunately he had two tens, went with it, and I was able to hold for all my chips to double up. Here I open the button and the BB defends. I flop top pair on T33. I turn an Ace for Aces and Tens and decide to go ahead and try to get another street of value in, as I thought he thought I'd bluff this turn very, very often. The river is a bad card because now he chops with me if he has an Ace. He checks and I try to get a third street of value in. Unfortunately, he lays his hand down. Here I open Q4cc and the BB defends. I flop a flush draw then turn top pair on the turn and decide to pot control. I river a flush. He leads for 2/3 pot. It's a touch thin but I wouldn't be able to sleep at night if I just called and he had a smaller flush. Also, T9 and 54 got there, so moving in on him for value makes a lot of sense. Here I win a big flip with AT against two sixes. I'd been very, very active at this table as well. An important thing to think about when you're playing tournament poker is to assess your image, or how others think of you at the table. Since I'd been active and he can ship a wide, wide range of hands, I have a pretty easy call. Here I flat with AQo against Scott Seiver a) Because I didn't want to inflate the pot against a very good player with AQo and b) I thought there was a good chance the kid behind me would squeeze all-in with a wide range. Things worked out as the guy moved in with ATo, Scott folded, I called, and I held. Here I get very lucky for most of my chips in THE key pot of the tournament when I 5bet AQo into a guy's two kings. It's a very tough spot for me when he clickraise 4bets, but I thought he thought I was squeezing, so I decided to go. I can avoid all of this by just calling pre, but that's neither here nor there. Here's a very interesting preflop spot where I felt I had no choice but to cold 4bet/then call Scott's shove if he 5bet with AJo. This player wellgaz had been playing as maniacally as I'd seen a player play in a long time. A testament to that is the fact that Scott goes with his KQo here. Wellgaz actually had it and moved in over the top, and I obviously folded. Another cold 4bet against the maniac with AJo. Here's a really funny pot where I 3bet 54dd, Dan "wretchy" Martin calls and I flop magic trip fives. We end up getting it all-in on the turn. I have 11 outs to win the pot outright and Dan has 6. All the other rivers would chop the pot, and that's what happened. Here I shove for a really tight guy's 15bb with Q7o from the SB right into his Aces. He actually slowrolled me in this hand but karma did not catch up to him. Without being results oriented, I still think this shove is pretty bad by me. Here I flat QJo against wellgaz, float the flop with two overs and a gutter, turn a Q and checkback, and then try to bluffcatch him on the end. I can live with this hand as I had him in very bad shape and had a plan that works out against him most of the time. This hand comes up with 3 tables left when I 3bet with JTo against a Norwegian named Bjorn-Erik Glenne who won EPT Barcelona in 2006. I flop top-pair, bet, get called, and fully expected to be ahead. I turn an OESD and it goes check-check. The river is a 6, I decide to check and he bets just one-third of the pot. I actually had my cursor on the all-in button as I thought he was going for some thin value with a pair worse than my Jacks. That would be just ridiculously thin though, so I settled on called and was very surprised to be shown a better hand. Here I win another flip with ATo to bust a guy in 12th. Here's a spot where I'm just not folding two tens at a five-handed table despite this guy insta 4betting it. I 5bet the load and he quickfolds. Here I raise A2o, flop top pair and a gutter wheel draw and c-bet into two players. Wellgaz calls. I control when the 4 pairs and have an easy bluffcatch against him. I ship a ton of chips over to Bjorn here on a hand where I decided to just call with AJcc when he opened the button. I had a sick feeling about this hand on the turn and river but still somehow found a call on both streets :( He CAN valuebet worse, so I think that was the deciding factor when I decided to pay him. Here I win a third flip with ATo to eliminate wellgaz on the 6handed final table bubble. Pretty amazing. Let this tournament be an example of how well you need to flip to win just about any poker tournament. On the fourth hand of the final table I double up eventual winner, an Estonian player named Janar Kiivramees in a hand that I obviously chalk up to a cooler. Here I double up against Bjorn after I flop a set and checkraise, then we get it all-in with him drawing dead on the turn with TP2K Here I 3bet Bjorn's open with JTo and then check behind on the flop with second pair. Interestingly, he leads the Ace on the turn and I just felt like he was weak and called. The river is a blank and I have an easy checkback since my hand has showdown value and my hand is good. I get unlucky for like the first time of the entire tournament here when my nines fall to Dan's fives to double him up. Here I outrun Bjorn's ATo with my KJo to eliminate him in sixth place. Here I lose a blind vs blind pot to my pal Amit "amak316" Makhija. Amit is such a sick, sick player both online and live, so I really hated having him on my left and did my best to avoid him. In this hand I have an easy 3bet 4-handed where I fully intended on playing for all the chips preflop. Janar flats and then moves in on me when I c-bet 843r. I almosttttttttt hero called with AJ high. This is the fatal hand. I finally lose a flip as my AKhh can't outrun Janar's tens. Really fun tournament. I hope some of this information is useful as it took 2.5 hours to complete this entry :) SS

Shannon Shorr is a professional poker player from Tuscaloosa, Alabama. He finished fourth in the Card Player 2006 Player of the Year race. You can follow his progress at

Any views or opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the ownership or management of
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