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Daniel - Poker Journal


15 Dec 2004

I woke up feeling great. Day one went fantastic and my table draw for day two was excellent. A group of tight players all playing the higher end of the deck- leaving the "little cards" to me.

I did well at that table and moved to a new table with about 240,000. The new table was great as well. Not much threat, and I slowly builit my chips up to 340,000.

In level 9, Johnny Chan was moved to my table, two to my left. We have played a lot in the cash games as well as the tournaments so I knew it was going to be tough. I planned on playing carefully against him and avoiding any big pots.

With blinds at 600-1200 I raised it to 5500 on the button- 1500 more than I'd normally make it since I respected Johnny's post flop play. Johnny called.

The flop came 3-3-2 and Johnny checked to me- I bet 12,000, and Johnny called. The turn card was an 8, Johnny bet 15,000 and I made it 60,000, raising 45,000 more. To my surprise, Johnny made it 45,000 more, and I called.

The river came a 9 and Chan moved all in for 98,700 and I called. Johnny turned over 8-8 and I mucked...you'll notice this story is lacking some important information... my hole cards!

I like to think that I share a great deal of information with the public, but there are somethings about my game that I need to protect. This was a very important hand obviously, and I don't want Chan to find out what I had, or reveal it to anyone else for that matter. Hopefully you all can respect that.


Not too long after that hand there was a 15 minute break. I still had 81,000 which was below the average but by no means a disaster. I needed to adjust my strategy now obviously so the break couldn't have come at a better time.

The loss of that hand did hit me in the stomach a little bit, so I went off into a corner of the casino to reflect silently. I wasn't happy with the way I played the hand and could easily have given up, but that's just not my style.

I prayed to God that he would help calm me down and give me the focus and drive to start my comeback. By the time the break was over that hand didn't even happen as far as I was concerned.

I got back to work, focusing even harder than I had before. By the end of the night I was able to get back above average with 162,800, 21st out of 82 remaining players.