Five more dimes: 2005 WSOP Event #20, $5000 Pot-Limit Hold 'Em
Next up was the $5000 Pot-Limit Hold 'Em event, which drew a mere 239 players. I got table 120, seat eight, and when I arrived there was a sign on the table saying go to table 25, so I did. There were going to be some chips in play at this table: on my left in seat 10 was the very aggressive Alex Balandin, who made the final table at this season's WPT event in the Bahamas. Next to him was Jeff "Happy" Shulman of Card Player. Seat three was the fast-playing Doug Lee. Seat six was my old buddy Al Adler I was going to be making some tough decisions.
Right away on the second hand, Doug open-raised from middle position and got a call from seat seven on the button and from me in the small blind with pocket Jacks. The flop came all low cards with two Spades. I checked to Doug and he bet the pot. The button folded. I made it 1000 to go and he called. The turn was an offsuit Nine. I checked to Doug again and he bet the pot. I studied and decided I had the best hand. I moved all in and he called immediately with a Nine-Eight, giving him five outs. They didn't come so I doubled to 10,000 and he was out.
Then I raised a pot with several limpers with pocket Tens on the button and got three callers. The flop came King-low-low with two Diamonds. I bet the pot and got one caller. The turn was the Nine of Spades, making two Spades on the board and we both checked. The river was the Ten of Spades, giving me a set of Tens. He bet out 600. I didn't think he had the Flush so I made it 1775 to go. He sweated and finally called. I showed my hand and he mucked. I was up to 13,050. Then English pro Bruce Corman took seat three. I got away from Ace-King on a flop of Ace-Eight-Seven when I got reraised on the flop and he showed me pocket Eights for the set. That took me down to 10,775. Then I got into it with Alex and check-raised him for most of his chips on a scary board of King-Queen-Ten, two Hearts. I had the flush draw with Eight-Seven of Hearts and he called rather quickly with Ace-Queen for second pair, saying, "I've never made a good laydown in my life." I didn't hit and was down to 6600 at the break. Happy Shulman started going off about how you're not supposed to raise with Flush draws in pot limit. I wasn't quite sure why not but I kind of wished I hadn't.
After the break I won a medium pot from Happy without a showdown, getting me back to 9300, but then lost two out of three small pots and was back to 6700 by the next break. I went card dead and dribbled down to 5050 by the next break and then with 4900 they broke my table and moved me to table four, seat five. Steve "Z" Zolotow had seat one; Hasan Habib seat three, Joe "The Elegance" Beevers seat four, and then Shar Koumi took seat two. I didn't get much and had 4675 at the next break.
Finally I picked up Ace-King under the gun and raised. Hasan called. The flop came Nine-Eight-Six with two Hearts. Hasan led out for 700, which I took to mean he was on a draw. I figured I may have the best hand or may have six outs so I put in the rest of my chips. He had a huge draw: Jack-Ten of Hearts, making him the favorite although I had the best hand at the moment. The turn was a Ten and I didn't festa al lago so I was out of the contest in 99th place.