I placed 68th out of 4,345. I haven't slept much since last night. My brain won't stop replaying the last 15 seconds of my tournament. It was level 18, I had 110,000 chips. Average stack was around 160,000. Blinds were 4k/8k with 1k antes. I had 13 big blinds left, and an M of 5 (how many rotations I could fold away and remain alive). I was moved to another table and had just sat down and picked up my first hand under the gun. I was still standing putting my back pack away after I looked at it. It was QQ. I looked up at everyone and pushed all in. I didn't care if everyone thought I had a monster. The pots were worth 22k and I would have been happy to just pick that up. Everyone quickly folded until the small blind, who has me covered. He calls, and asks if I have Aces...immediately my heart sank as I realize he has Kings. The flop drove the last nail in when he hit a set. Even though I was moderately deep in the money and had an awesome time it still felt as if someone ripped my heart out.
Day 1 I was fortunate to hit a few runs of strong hands and good situations. Day 2 had no run of such hands or situations. Day 1 was not stressful, I was a table chip leader for 5-6 levels. Day 2 I was a chip leader for 1-2 levels. Day 2 was all about keeping my head above water, waiting for a golden situation that never came. Day 2 was much more anxiety provoking. After my brain cools off I promise I will blog my entire experience with hand details and pictures.
I feel better about it today, even though I did not sleep much. The pain has withered and I am seeing my experience for what it was... a fantastic time. I got to sit at tables with Jerry Yang, David Sklansky, Amarillo Slim, and Jonathon Aguiar. I had a conversation with Dan Harrington after having breakfast in a cafe at the Rio. Seeing so many dozens of celebrity poker players was like seeing Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck at Disneyland.
Overall I felt my game was played as well as ever. Not perfect, but up until the end, every time I had my tournament life on the line, I had the best hand. Fate allowed me to not be sucked out, but the cosmos were fair as I never once sucked out on anyone. I feel I played my opponents and situations well. I was successful at regularly feeding my stack by carefully choosing my time to pick up pots with sub-optimal hands. At the end of the day I feel ranking in the top 1%percentile of a WSOP event is an accomplishment worthy of adding to others that I have made. There is no hiding it. I am a poker player.