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Terrence Chan

follow me as I play poker and look for new ways to get punched in the face

2011 WSOP wrap-up
Wow. Every year from 2005-2010, I posted about every WSOP event I played. Sometimes the posts were quite short and abbreviated, sometimes because the tournament itself was short and abbreviated, or sometimes because the tournament was quite long and exhausting and I didn't feel like writing. Sometimes I squished a few entries into one post to save time and effort. But never has there been a WSOP like this one, where I basically haven't written in any significant detail about a single event.

(Really, I blame Twitter.)

By the numbers, total buy-ins of $59000 and total cashes of just $10394, so it was not a successful WSOP. I've certainly had worse (2008), though. In spite of taking a lot of flak from poker people in and outside of my own house for missing a big chunk of the WSOP due to my unfortunate decision to follow around the Stanley Cup Final, I was very workmanlike once I did get into Vegas for the long-haul. I saw at least some action on 16 of 20 days between June 16 and July 5, and I had already missed a lot of the events I was really looking forward to playing.

As mentioned in my last/other WSOP report, I don't feel I played that well for much of this WSOP, but I did learn a lot about myself. I was reminded that as for as cold and calculated a gambler that I like to think I am, I am indeed quite human and need to be on guard against mental errors. I also learned to not throw in the towel when tournaments don't seem to be going my way. You don't get to 5x your starting stack by dinner every day and can't you play worse just because you haven't done it. I've become a lot more mentally tough and that part of being mentally tough is not necessarily just avoidance of tilt-jamming all your chips but it can often be a re-steal not attempted or a bet saved.

And I think it's important to learn these lessons because I feel like, when it comes down to it, I can be a darn good no-limit tournament player when I play up to my potential. The main thing is that latter clause. You take someone who just okay or reasonably good at poker, and well, it's actually hard for that person to get a lot better. But to already be a strong player and be sure you play strong all the time? That shouldn't be hard. Playing to your own potential should be the easy part.

And of course, this applies to life just as much as it does to poker. As usual, I won't be playing too much poker for the next little while. I'll be focusing on the non-poker things that make me happy: being slammed into the mat, kicked in the head, punched in the face, and having my joints twisted around in unnatural ways. I've been lazy as shit this WSOP with my training and I fully expect to get ass-kicked back in Vancouver, but I'm going to work hard, and try to get a little closer to my potential every day. Join me, won't you?
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