Ranting With The Poker Brat In Vegas

Thu, 17/05/2007 - 6:32pm

Continued from Goo Goo G'Joobing With The Eggman In Vegas... 

Another character who likes to make his voice heard is that of the Poker Brat Phil Hellmuth, who just missed out on the big money after he was unable to fold Jacks to The Eggman’s Aces on a raggy Flop. Inevitable ygraceless in defeat, Phil tried his best to leave without complaint, but couldn’t resist commenting, “Unbelievable, knocked out by a guy who plays 9-6.”

There was another hand prior to his exit that saw Hellmuth spurt out some classic lines. Shawn Buchanan raising pre-flop, betting the flop, and hitting a pair on the River with K-7, leading to Hellmuth vomiting lines such as “Great bluff on the flop, genius!’, “He probably can’t even spell poker”, and “I bet he doesn’t even make it to the end of the day.” Well, the first two might be bollox, but the final prediction ultimately came true. What a burk though. I asked Pauly if Phil really was an idiot or whether it was just a part of his game or self promotion: “Well, he’s a real family guy and often misses big comps to spend time with his family but yes, overall he’s still a sausage jockey.”

Before I return to the poker, a quick mention on the Bellagio, which I was making my first ever visit to. If you haven’t been, then you really should, if only to see the incredible fountains dancing in time to the classical music being played over the loudspeakers.

Inside is equally impressive. Pristine conditions, lots of norkage and even a chocolate fountain – something for everyone! There’s also a garden in the lobby area, the mixture of overhead fountains, butterfly sanctuary and giant watering can, slug and ladybird creating a surreal cross between Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory and Edward Scissor Hands’ back garden.

Speaking in a more broader sense, the contrast between the taxi drivers back in Brum and the ones in Vegas is immense, the latter being made up of a wide range of nationalities spanning from Russia to the Philippines. I even encountered an Ethiopian Canadian who had spent 4 years in Italy but was now working in America – work that one out! Even though he had a Canadian passport, he was seemingly in love with America, saying, “I adore America. I’m officially Canadian, but in my heart I’m American. I earn 10 times as much here than I would anywhere else.”

On our last day, it was time for the final table, being held in the Convention centre of the Bellagio rather than the Main Casino. For those of you who’ve never experienced the full WPT Final Table experience, then don’t bother, it’s shite. Not only do they try and teach the crowd how to clap and cheer as if they were useless chimps, but they even force them into practicing the art of ‘oooooohing’.

What’s most skin crawling, however, is their complete disregard for the clock and, what had been up to that point, excellent structure of the tournament. Yep, instead of the clock increasing, it goes from 90 mins, to 1 hour, down to 30 mins and even hitting an all-time embarrassing low of 13 minutes, just so they can get the thing wrapped up and fuck off. At this pace, the shitty all-in fest is inevitable and you have to keep reminding yourself of how much they’re playing for.

When I watched it on TV, I knew it was a raise, all-in, call kinda show, but I just thought that it was an edited version. However, after watching the show live, you suddenly realise that it’s not too far from what actually happens. In fact, the whole thing would have been done and dusted in a blink of an eye if it hadn’t been for the heads-up confrontation, an unexpectedly lengthy exchange between Kirk Morrison and Carlos Mortensen which was only time-consuming due to a combination of passive play from the Kiwi and the shorter stacked player winning one of the many random all-ins. 600k and 1.2 million blinds with just 30 million in play – are you kidding me?? I guess that’s just business. The TV company want to get it over with as quickly and cheaply as possible, so you can’t blame them – why should they care about the structure? It’s just a shame when you hear the crowd booing (I bet that doesn’t make the cut) and the announcer trying to make out as if this was an epic final. Try announcing last year’s 7 hour H.O.R.S.E Final, now that’s was a fucking epic!

Anyhow, ranting aside, when the dust settled and the smoke cleared, it was The Matador (genius whoever thought of that nickname) who was left standing – a great performance, cringe-worthy acceptance speech, but who cares, he’s rich!!! Well, richer.

So that was it, the Card Player blogging team supposedly all quit (although I’m sure they’d changed their minds by Monday morning) and Mrs Sabina Gadecki was given the boot (I assume my source is not yanking my chain) for being shithot in the looks department, but just plain shit at everything else and simply not giving a toss about poker.

I’ll leave you with these words…

Bring back my Shana!