Before Niagara Falls my last big-money final table was in Europe. But now being in Canada changed a lot for me. Yeah, because it was in Canada, my family and friends came down to watch and I didn’t want to disappoint them. Also, Monte Carlo was my first final table so just making it there was an accomplishment. But the second time around you say, “OK I’ve already been here before so this time I have to win.” I was so crushed when I lost; it was just a huge disappointment.
So let’s talk about what happened this time. In the very first hand, KrazyKanuck raises, I re-raise, he moves all-in and I folded. Honestly, I went in playing it as if it was a ten dollar sit’n go online. I was playing for first place. I was going to be as aggressive as I had to be. I didn’t care about limping my way into fifth or fourth or third. I was playing to get as many chips as I could.
In the very first hand, I am in the small blind and I have been dealt pocket sixes. The blinds are 15,000/30,000 and I have got about 1.3 million. It folds to KrazyKanuck who is one of the tightest players I have ever played against. I played with him for two days and he is a very good player. I know he’ll take a shot at the blinds every once in a while, but I mean, if you show him strong resistance he usually won’t push it.
It folds around to him and he makes it 90,000. We were about even in chips and I could have flat-called, seen a flop, maybe hit a set. But even if I did hit a set, he probably wasn’t going to pay me off unless he had a monster. I figured I could get him to lay down anything but a monster right there and take down a nice-sized pot – about 135,000 with blinds and antes plus his raise.
So, I raised it up to about 290,000 and right away he said something like, “I guess I am going out on the first hand,” and he pushed all-in. In my mind, it was obvious he had to have a monster there. There is no way he was risking his tournament on the first hand of his first TV final table ever on the WPT and that’s why I laid it down. It was a fun first hand though. The crowd was quiet initially and then boom, right away, action; raise, re-raise, all-in! (laughing) I guess I just wanted to liven things up a bit.