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Poker News | PokerWorks Op-Ed

Poker Pundit Jeremy “Chipsteela” Menard- The Sunday Million, The Path to the Final Table

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A blog of sorts, a story to be told, the true depth of poker is about to unfold:

It’s hard to believe that I’ve been in this business for over three years now. When I look back on my poker career so far I can’t really be too upset, I’ve accomplished some incredible things that I never could have imagined including well over a million in winnings collectively, five poker triple crowns, and countless deep finishes in major tournaments. I’ve been pretty blessed to have the results I have, but still I’ve felt like there has always been something missing from my poker resume, that being that one big score that people will always remember you for. You know what I mean, that tournament win that makes you feel like putting in countless hours grinding online and working on your game was all totally worth it. Well after being so close so many times now and always falling short, I was starting to feel like this elusive score was merely a fantasy and I was doomed to envy and curse those who were actually able to run good enough to pull it off. Well believe it or not, that all changed recently.
The Sunday grind started off like any other. I built several stacks only to see them disappear in front of my eyes after a few lost races, some kamikaze plays that didn’t pan out, and one painstaking 2-outer on the river deep in the Sunday Brawl. I’ve actually been trying hard to maintain a positive mindset when everything starts to go to shit early in the day, after all on Sunday it really only takes one win to make the day a success. I’ve found that if you let yourself get tilted, the rest of the day just becomes miserable with little chance to finish on a positive note. This was a pretty big Sunday too, as it was the one time a month when Full Tilt runs a $500 with a $1 million guarantee and a deep stacked structure that allows for much more play. Armed with a positive attitude and more focus from playing a few less tables then usual, I began my assault on the tournament.

I was able to build a stack early by playing aggressively and making some big hands. It also didn’t hurt that I started off at a dream table full of subpar players that probably satellited in and couldn’t help but to pay me off like they were Tiger Woods trying to keep countless women on the side quiet. Unlucky Tiger, we still love you… Anyways, thanks to the slow structure I was able to play my stack pretty solidly, but I can’t deny that I was also getting hit by the deck in pretty absurd fashion as well. I flopped several sets in big multiway pots, and always seemed to have the best of it when the money went in. Once we got into the money I started getting played back at from all angles, and it didn’t help that I was pretty card dead for about an hour causing my stack to slump a little with around 150 left. It seemed like it was as good a time as any to go on a sick run, so that’s exactly what I did.
First, I won a 3 way all in with T-T against T-J and K-Q to put me in much better shape. An orbit later I picked up the A-K when a short stacked player in early position moved in, and with around 35bbs in my stack I also put all my chips in the middle in an attempt to isolate the all-in player. I was not happy when another player behind me also moved in without much hesitation leading me to believe that I was in trouble. Well the short stack player showed up with 6-6 but the other player had K-K and I was left thinking fuck my life, not again. Imagine my surprise to see the flop roll out with an A-T-J, and when the rest of the board bricked a monster pot shipped my way.

These are the kinds of hands that can really put you back into the tournament in a major way, and it’s almost a necessity these days to have luck on your side with how aggressive poker has become. I used the chips gained from these hands, and also a monster flip I won against a tough player with J-J against their A-K to propel me to the final table with the chip lead. I was also incredibly fortunate to have some very good players that could have made my life much more difficult bust out on the final table bubble. Some of these players included Cdbr3799, Ryanbluf and Wywrot. With these sickos out of the hunt I was very confident that I could push around the remaining players just looking to move up the pay ladder, especially since after looking up my table using the Bluff Magazine tool I found that most of these guys weren’t even winning players according to their tournament stats.
Check back next time to see if I was actually able to pull off this amazing feat, and finally ship that 6-figure score that I have been chasing after for 3 years now.

Study poker with Jeremy “Chipsteela” Menard at

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