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Poker News | World Series of Poker | WSOP2009 | The Works

Day 32 – Donkament Rage

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I now understand how people get road rage because I officially get donkament rage any time there is a $1,500 No Limit Hold Em event on a weekend. I should be used to it, but there's something about it that starts my day off on the wrong note every time. It starts out when I'm driving up to the Rio 30 minutes before noon and there is a line of taxi cabs blocking every conceivable entrance, including the one to the valet. I manage to squeeze my way on the outside past them but not before almost getting hit three times by cab drivers not bothering to look where they are going. The valet is surprisingly empty so that at least isn't a problem.

It gets worse once I get inside. I've written about this before so I won't go into depth but basically the entire hall way from the Amazon Room to the entrance is jam packed. For those of you that haven't been to the Rio, this is an extremely long hallway... probably the length of a football field. It wouldn't be that bad if the people were moving but the majority of them are standing there looking like a kid at Toys R Us. Just when I think I've found a clear passageway, the guy walking in front of me decides to stop suddenly. I almost run him over... probably should have... but manage to avoid him at the last second. In avoiding him, I end up getting run over by this huge guy wearing a cowboy hat and nearly fall over. I shake it off and don't say anything although internally I'm saying all kinds of things. Normally the walk from the entrance to the Amazon Room takes me about three minutes. Today it takes me ten. By the time I get to my seat, I'm bruised, sweating, and have a full out case of Donkament rage. Luckily for me, I'm a pretty laid back dude and it only takes me a couple minutes to calm down.

The other thing with these $1,500 tournaments is there are so many unrecognizable players that you almost get lost walking through the tournament floor looking for familiar faces. I see one of the official photographers wandering aimlessly, a clueless look on her face. “Lost?” I ask her. “Huh,” she says. I tell her she looks like she's lost and looking for something and add, “It's because you don't recognize any one, isn't it?”

“That's exactly it,” she said. “I think I've only taken five shots in thirty minutes so far.”

I'd see her again at 4 p.m. when the H.O.R.S.E. event started. Needless to say she didn't look nearly as lost with all the big names in that event.

Jeffrey Pollack is all about tweeting and communicating with fans, players, and the media through the latest in technology. Today he posed the question if a WSOP event should be able to sell out or if the WSOP should ensure anyone that wants to play can play. I sent a brief response but to me if someone wants to enter a WSOP tournament and have the money to do so, they should be allowed in. The Rio has plenty of convention space... if space is such an issue, then use one of those rooms. Or do what they did with the 1K NLHE event and have two separate day 1's.

I ran into Beth Shak during my walk. I hadn't seen her in a while and I reminded her that the Main Event was coming up soon and that if she wanted me to use the big stuffed animal for my photos this year that she needed to go get it soon. “Oh right,” she said, jumping up, and reaching into her purse. She hands me her business card and says, “Whatever you do, don't give my number to anyone, I just had to get it changed for the first time in 15 years.”

I laugh and announce to the table that the business card I was holding in my hand was available for $100. Best offer I could get was $10 so I decided against giving it up.

One unusual thing I saw today was a ton of players wearing Paradise Poker gear. When I first started playing poker, Paradise was one of the sites I frequented. I thought they had gone out of business but apparently not as they easily had at least 100 players in today’s event.

I heard two unsubstantiated but probably true rumors since I heard about them from several sources today. The first one involved Eskimo Clark chasing a dealer into the break room to berate her. The second one involved Thang Luu slamming his hand down on a dealer's hand and breaking their hand. Temper, temper boys, it's just a game. As I said, not positive the rumors were true but a floor person did confirm that he had heard of each incident.

Freudian slip of the week: Jeffrey Pollack walks up to Gabe Kaplan when he sees him playing in the 50K H.O.R.S.E. event and says, “Welcome Back.”

Maybe I'm too easily amused, but that made me laugh.

Even the greats aren't immune to frustration. I was walking by a Stud 8 hand where Nick Schulman was check calling bets from Doyle Brunson and then on 7th street check raised Doyle. Doyle made the call and when Schulman showed A-3-4-5-6-7 for a 6 low and 7 high straight, Doyle shook his head and slammed his cards hard down into the muck, muttering something under his breath.

A lot going on tomorrow and I'll be there to bring you the latest and not so greatest. Until then...

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