Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Final Sats for $500K PPC Aruba End Sunday


This week there are daily online satellite tournaments for the $500K GTD PPC Aruba World Championship at Intertops Poker and Juicy Stakes Poker. Win your way to the Final, August 31st, in daily Step 1 and Step 2 tournaments. Sunday's winner gets a prize package that includes $2400 buy-in to that Main Event and accommodation on Palm Beach at the Hilton or Hyatt Resort.

Vincent Fiorenza won the 2015 PPC Aruba Main Event taking home $106,047 of the $500,000 GTD prize pool. He also got a $5000 prize package for this year's event and will be returning to Aruba in November to defend his title.

Poker mom Ashley Hine won the last satellite series for the $500K GTD Punta Cana Classic. We'll introduce you to her and all online satellite winners going to Aruba and Punta Cana once the final PPC Aruba prize package is awarded August 28th.

You can still win your way to the Final Table starting with a $2.20 buy-in Step 1 tourney.  Daily Step 1 and Step 2 tournaments continue until then.

Video: 3 Final Chance to Win Your Way to Aruba

Final online satellite tournaments for $500K GTD Aruba World Championship August 22nd-28th

$500,000 PPC Aruba World Championship Online Satellite Tournament Schedule
3-tier tournament series --  buy in at any stage or try to win your way to the Final.

Step 1 ($2+$0.20)
1 Step 2 ticket awarded
August 22-28 at 2 pm, 4 pm, 6 pm, 8 pm and midnight EDT

Step 2 ($10+$1)
1 ticket to Final awarded
August 23-28 at10 pm EDT

Last Chance Tournament ($1 + $0.10 )
1 ticket to Final awarded
August 28 at 7 pm EDT

Final ($100+$10)
1 $4,000 prize package awarded
August 28 at 9 pm EDT

Registration is via the Tournaments tab in either poker room.

Monday, 22 August 2016

Slow Start at Foxwoods

A video posted by Tim O'Keefe (@2fit2fold) on

Things didn't start too well for Tim O'Keefe at Foxwoods this weekend :( We haven't heard from him since this video on Saturday. Hopefully things have picked up!

UPDATE: Tim finished in the money!

A photo posted by Tim O'Keefe (@2fit2fold) on

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

No Rest for the Wicked

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Living the Dream! I wish this was my view! lol
 Ahhhh my solid showing at Velden's long past, my disappointing Choctaw WPT is done, it's time for so much needed rest and relaxation! Or so I thought lol Turns out that there "Aint No Rest for the Wicked" as "Money Don't Grow on Trees!"  That Cage The Elephant song reference could not be truer for anyone trying to be a successful poker player. While we are fortunate enough to play a game for a living, it's really easy to slack off when you're your own boss! And to be ahead of this game, you need to constantly be on the grind, on and off the felt.
What I dreamed of doing...
So while I had had dreams off not leaving my bed for a few days or laying on a beach somewhere, it was not what actually happened.  I did somehow (lol) make sometime the first couple days to catch up on "Game of Thrones" of course, and I may have also been forced to watch a few episodes of the "Bachelorette" lol But after that, it was back to studying, grinding on Intertops and planning for the next events!
What actually happened!

So while it wasn't right back into business, it was productive! I finally got my Twitch set up and ready to go, @ 2Fit2Fold. So now at least the design is professional !;) My first stream with the new set up was this past sunday and went amazingly well! I final tabled two tournaments, including a 4th place finish in the 5 k guarantee.

The real highlight however was watching my friend Ashley take down the Aruba satellite for a 5k package! It was pretty exciting as it was happening while I was at the final table of the 5k GTD! She gets a 5 days stay in Aruba and a $2400 entry into the main event at the PPC! So it was a great kick off to the stream, and hopefully there's many more like that to come!

I also mapped out my next few events, one of which already started and another that starts tomorrow!! The River series at Winstar in Oklahoma kicked off some satellite tournaments this past weekend, you might have seen some of the action on my social media stuff, and if not, no worries, there's plenty more to come ;)

I played two satellites for main event entries, bricking both unfortunately! First one I literally bubbled it, finishing 17th, when top 16 got a seat! Ugh The next one I finished in 20th with 13 getting a seat! I went out in dramatic fashion in that one! I looked down at pockets Aces in the big blind after not 1, not 2 but 3 players had moved ALL IN preflop!  High Five the dealer and snap call!! lol I'm up against QQ, JJ and AK off suit! Dream situation right!?! It was only another dream though, as the board ran out 5,6,4,  rainbow flop, 9x on the turn and of course, guess it, BINK Q on the river for the big stack player, taking us all out!  It was a rough day to say the least. lol But I stayed positive, took the rest of the night off, then came back to play cash the next day to get it all back!

Next stop -- Foxwoods!
The other event I'll be playing is the WSOP circuit event at Foxwoods! It actually starts tomorrow and I'll be flying out in the early AM! Im excited about this one, even though im only planning on staying for a few days.The kick-off event has 4 starting flights and $500k guaranteed prize pool, plus a WSOP ring of course! It looks to be a great value and attract a lot of recreational players! I'm sure the field will be a lot tougher than WinStar, but this smaller buy-in and big guarantee should even it out quite a bit! I haven't committed myself to the main event yet because I think the value at the River series is too much to pass up! But I will have to see how the fields are and of course how well I run in the kick-off event first! lol If I scoop up a win, I might have to rethink things lol. I ran really well there my last visit, going deep in several events! Sadly I got Really unlucky at the very end of ALL of them, to get  knocked out just short of a huge score! I had 4-5 final two table runs, where I got it in well ahead and the other player lucked out on me with some ridiculous hand, sending me to the rail! SO CLOSE! Hopefully I can put those runs behind me and use the knowledge I learn from them to do even better this time! C'mon at least one final table!! lol

Run Good and let the shenanigans begin!

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

WPT Choctaw! The grind never stops!


Well as you can see, I didn't waste anytime after Velden! It was an amazing trip and was tough to leave such a cool location, but the grind never stops! The WPT was already in full swing at Choctaw Casino when I arrived back, and if wasn't for a brutal layover in Chicago, I would have been there 8 hours sooner! lol Things went smoothly for the first two flights, but it came to an abrupt halt on my last layover. I got all of 3 hours away from being home in my own bed finally, just to find out O'Hare airport had different plans for me lol! A 2 hour layover turned into 6 hours and the plan was ruined. I was absolutely exhausted. By the time I got home, I knew there was no way I could make it to Choctaw for the first big satellite the next day. After a decent nights sleep though, I did make it for the 5pm, 5 seat guaranteed satellite, but busted just 10 away from a seat! I got into a big hand with AK off suit and somehow lost after flopping top two pair!
 I raised from under the gun to 900 at 200/400 with a 25 ante and the next player(pretty passive calling station older guy) insta called. It folded around to the button, who was also the big stack(who was only the big stack cause he was a luckbox lol) raised to 3000. I had around 15k and thought about shoving, but this was literally the second hand after the break, which was the end of late registration/rebuy period, so I decided to  just flat and see the flop. The next player called as well. The flop come AKQ, ALL spades! lol So while Im happy I flopped top two, the board is crazy, and I'm not exactly sure what my play is. I thought though with the structure being so fast and having such a huge hand, there's no way I can't try and get it all in here. Still not sure about that, but thats how it played out. I checked, next player checks and the button 3 bettor makes it 4500 to go. I thought for a minute and shoved, only to have the next player snap shove all in as well. OOPS! Thats never what you want to see, but giving that he didn't re-raise me preflop, I thought I was probably still good?? The button tanks for about 2-3 minutes and then finally folds AK off suit face up...Well now I really hope I'm good cause a full house doesn't look like it's coming lol. The other player turns over JJ with the jack of spades for a royal straight flush draw. I was pretty shocked by the way he played every street with this hand, but I don't know if I could have folded there either, trickey spot? Well the turns a blank and I'm fading a spade, a Jack or a 10 on the river for a real good stack to probably coast to getting paid, but ..bink...a 10 of diamonds hits the river for the guy and I'm out. Ironically enough finishing 10 places from getting a seat to the main! AArgghhh lol
Cash game action!!
I played a little cash afterwards and made my money back, but nothing special to report there. The first night was still kinda slow and I was mentally and physically still drained anyway. I needed a good nights sleep and a good workout to get myself back on track! Unfortunately for me, the guy I was sharing a room with snored like a chainsaw, and that didn't happen lol I was a Zombie the next day for the most part. Next time I'll splurge for my own room! lol I managed to man up and force myself to get through a quick workout in still, as It usually still energizes me for the day. I was glad I at least got something in and it did help a bit, actually coming close again in another satty! This time they were giving away 20 seats and I of course finished in 30th place lol. AK failed me again, but in much less dramatic fashion this time. I shoved AK off from the cutoff for about 7 big blinds, just to get snapped off by the guy right next to me and his pocket Kings! The board whiffed me completely, no sweat at all, and I was out again. I'm not too upset though, as satellites are mentally brutal and a completely different tourney than usual. So while I'm disappointed with not being able to play the main, I can't complain too much, especially given the circumstances! lol Two close calls in two days isn't all that bad a showing!
Fancy! lol
Still I didn't follow through with one of the main things I learned in Vegas already and it may have cost me a seat at the main event! I know my friend can't help it, but I shouldn't have been cheap about it. While saving money on rooms and just trying to be friendly or social is always nice; for me, sleep is more important! My friends will understand! lol Maybe I'm just getting older or am too set in my ways, but my main goal is to win and I need to be able to perform at my best everyday. Hopefully that's yours too, don't let anything stand in your way. Real friends will understand, do what you need to do.
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Final 4 tables!
So I missed out on playing the big one, but I had a few poker friends make VERY deep runs in the Main event, both finishing in the top 15!! So at least I got to sweat their action and see the last few tables play out for a while. There were some very talented players going into that final day, and it was cool to see some local pros mixed in with the big dogs like Phil Helmuth, Olivier Busquet and Jeff gross! I'm glad to say they held there own and made us all proud! And no worries guys, it's on to the next one!!
Run Good
Helmuth and his gold shoes!

Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Velden Wrap Up

Cool shot on the final day
Well another Intertops satellite trip has finished up and it was a great success, by far. I wish I could say I took home the title, but the experience itself was a win for sure. We all made day two, which is always tough and a plus for any poker player. The big buy in and long structure always bring around the better players, so just making it that far was quite an accomplishment. So I hope everyone is proud of their play. Unfortunately, only myself and Emil made day 3, but the rest of the guys got to enjoy a day out in Velden at least! I'm not gonna lie, I was a bit jealous they hit the beach without me. lol I can't complain too much though, as I was playing day 3 for a chance at 142k and the trophy! The day started out with a great table draw for me, seating me at what would be the final table. Always nice when you know you won't have to make any table changes and have the time to get reads on players. The play started out tough, aggressive and at times confusing, lol. So I had my work cut out for me. There was an odd balance of big/small stacks at the table with with shortest being about 20 big blinds or so. While I was one of the shorter stacks(35 bigs), I felt very comfortable and knew if I could just win a few good pots or get a double up, I could do some serious damage at this table.
Obv my new profile pic lol
I quickly noticed two guys on my right were very aggressive and the rest of the table somewhat passive. So this looked good for me at first. They were opening on my right frequently, and I 3 bet them a few times and took down the pot. A few other times my 3 bets were called and we battled post flop. One particular hand involved me 3 betting from the small blind w A6 of clubs for the aggressive button raiser. He thought for a moment or two then called. In retrospect, I think I made the raise too small, only going for a x 2.6 3 bet, knowing he was a good post flop player and I was out of position. It worked out well for me though when the flop came Ace 4 4 rainbow. I decided to check, knowing I was well ahead of his button raising range but still leery he may have a better ace. When he checks back the flop I knew I was good, and once another Ace hit the turn I knew I had the nuts. The only next move was to just figure out how to get any more money out of him! I decided to check the turn and call if he bet, and then put out a large donk bet the river, to look like a bluff. My hope being he wouldn't believe me and look me up light. Well he bet the turn like I hoped, but after a minute or two of thinking, he was good enough to make the fold. He even said out loud, it looked like a bluff! Crap! lol I think I may have missed some value there. I could have either checked to him and let him bluff the river, or just thinly value betting, and hope to get called. But, oh well, I had a gut feeling and went with it. Unfortunately it doesn't always work out. Almost though!;)
Gabor and I sweating Emil's final table
While I had a few decent hands and spots, I never really got any traction going, and after a few levels ended up about where I started the day. I Think there were some other hands I could have played possibly played differently, but still think they were probably the right moves. I just didn't have many hands to work with and the spots I did take, either didn't provide enough chips to keep me going or just completely backfired lol. Once the money bubble burst, I decided to open up my game, only to get 3 bet shoved on 3 times when I opened relatively light! So I found myself really short and it was a matter of getting a good enough hand to ship in at that point, hoping for a double. I shipped once with J 10 suited from under the gun, and surprisingly the big blind open folded an Ace! I had some other hands that I am looking back on an wondering, "what if" Like pocket 6s from the small blind with the same button player opening; and an open with KQ off suit that I discouragingly folded to a 3 bet shove from a tight player, when I had only about 15 bigs. When I finally put my last 9.5 bigs in, it was from under the gun with 88 and made it through everyone but the small blind, who called with Ace Queen of clubs. The queen hit for him but also added outs for me with a Q J 9 flop. A 7 turn was still hopeful for me but another q on the river sent me off the to rail in 22nd place. It was a decent payday, so while I was upset I didn't get the win, I will gladly take it lol I always find it funny when I do better in larger buy in tournaments with better structures and tougher players. I guess I should take some comfort in that as a player, an know my abilities are at least up to par with some of the big dogs. Clearly I still have a long ways to go, but it is encouraging at least. lol
Emil calm and ready for FT time!
From there we got to sweat Emil's action and enjoy Velden, having some delicious meals and enjoying the scenery between stops in and out of the final table area. It was awesome to see another member of team Intertops there, even though I was jealous i wasn't there with him! lol We did some interviews with the beautiful lake in the background, gambled a little in the very cool little casino and had some drinks to celebrate when Emil went out in 6th place. He was disappointed it wasn't a win, but the extra 26k in his pocket made him feel better very quickly as we enjoyed a fun last night out together in what was probably the coolest location Intertops has had us at yet. While we didn't scoop a win, we all had deep runs, played well, ate great food, enjoyed amazing scenery, drank delicious Austrian beer, and had ALOT of fun. You can't beat that. Well maybe at least not til the next satellite tournament! lol ;)
Team dinner at Lakeside!

Check out all of the videos on  the Intertops facebook page!
Run good

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Poker Life, Velden!

On to the next one! The WSOP may be over but the poker never stops! We have arrived in Velden, Austria for the another amazing tournament series! Myself and the rest of Team Intertops are in this beautiful location to take a shot at the massive 2700 euro Poker EM main event! Intertops had satellites running for a while a couple months ago for this awesome trip, and lucky few of us are here to attempt to make the poker dream a reality. The idea of scooping a win here for insane amounts of money for only a cheap satellite entry online is "iving the Dream" to be sure! Intertops has done it again, not only did they pick a great tourney in a great spot, they over deliver on taking care of their players.  From helping with rides from the airport to getting us settled at the hotel/casino to taking us all out on a boat ride to an amazing dinner! Its been incredible and its only day two! lol No ones even played poker yet!
After writing my last blog post on lesson learned from the WSOP, I knew I needed to take a step back and get some perspective. I will admit, at first the idea of traveling this far and playing poker again so soon after the WSOP wrapped up was not looking so great to me.  The life of playing poker professionally can be brutal sometimes. The airport lines, the long flights, hotel living, the costs and just the straight grind that is tournament poker wears on you quickly.  But as soon as I arrived here, I knew this opportunity could not have come at a better time.  The country is beautiful, the location is amazing, and the people I've met already are great! It's already been the best reminder for why I wanted to do this for a living! These are the experiences that make all the losses, bad beats and close calls worth it. The job could allows us to travel across the globe to play a GAME...It puts things in perspective really quickly, especially with all the tragedies that seem to be happening on a daily basis in the world.
On our boat ride to LakeSide for dinner!

Being adventurous and trying the local cuisine!
Wish us all luck, as  we start our main event here today!  And I know from my previous experience in Seefeld that the competition will be fierce. At least the insanely aggressive play will not be a surprise this time around! lol  It should be a really challenging tournament to say the least, but I know will all will enjoy it! Maybe Team Intertops can come away with a five way chop!? (Nahhhh no chops! but I'll let them have 2-5th at least! lol) We are all hoping for a deep run and to come home with the championship trophy, but all we can do is play our best and enjoy the ride!  Everyone here has already won in my book!  I'll be back soon with another post updating our day 1 status!Run Good

Monday, 18 July 2016

Lessons Learned from the WSOP

Well my first WSOP has come to a close. It has had it’s ups and downs, and downs, but overall I learned a Lot and am still grateful to have been able to play at the biggest and best series in the Poker world. While I didn’t get to live out my poker dream completely and play the Main event, I’m confident the lessons I’ve learned from this roller coaster adventure will help me refocus me for upcoming events and come back to crush next years WSOP! So to keep me on point and have something to reread before next years events, here’s a list of the top 5 most important things I figured out in the last 5 weeks!
Confused look for most of the series lol

  • Have a plan, but be flexible!  I had what I though was a really good plan going in. I had mapped out all the events I wanted to play, totaled it all up and even made a spreadsheet for investors! It was all set up! Until I got there and it basically went out the window! lol While I still played in a decent amount of the events I planned, I changed my game plan on almost a day to day basis. There were simply too many tournaments outside of the WSOP that were softer and clearly a better value.  I had not done enough research on other events in town and it caused quite a bit of stress and confusion. I was constantly torn between what I planned and what others were telling me to play. Flip/flopping on what to play will drive you crazy, believe me. (lol) Just figure it out beforehand and Commit. Another big part of this was reentering tourneys after busting. While many, if not all of the tournaments had multiple day ones, I repeatedly fired a second bullet after busting. While there are definitely spots where I think reentering is worth it, I know now that I was just glory chasing and went WAY too hard too early in my trip. By not sticking to my plan of just reentering the next day, I wasted valuable mental energy, relaxation time and of course money.

  • Be Disciplined!   Staying along the same lines as sticking with your plan, being disciplined enough to stay the course throughout the series is vitally important! If I maintained my discipline and didn’t reenter those tourneys, I would have saved myself from a lot of stress. And while I said be flexible, don’t be so flexible that you end up just going with what everyone else is doing.  You are there for you and no one else. I need to workout everyday, eat healthy, and get a good nights sleep or I’m off my game. Don’t drink, stay out late, skip workouts or eat crappy food, just cause that’s what everyone else is doing. I fell off my routine multiple times throughout the series, I either was trying to keep up with what everyone else was doing or simply slacked off, and I know it cost me my A game. You don’t want to ignore people’s advice completely, I would have missed out on a lot of opportunities if I did, but make sure you still put yourself first.. Do whatever you need to do to bring your A game everyday, no matter what.

  • Bank roll management! Your bank roll isn’t big enough! lol Plain and simple, if you think you have enough, double it. I don’t care who’s bank roll strategy you follow, but double it. Some players come out to the WSOP and take every last cent they have to the tables. Its INSANE. Unless you are completely comfortable with losing your entire roll in a few weeks(and I don’t think anyone should be) Don’t be one of these players, be smart! Use the same intelligent financial decisions that got you here in the first place. Yea it’s the World Series of Poker, and you should take your shot, but don’t shoot yourself in the foot and go home broke! Many times throughout the series the loss of money, compounded by a stretch of running bad, caused me to to tilt and knock me off my game. Even if the thoughts are WAY back in my mind, it’s still there enough to start even the best players down a bad path of negativity and self doubt. Save yourself the trouble and make sure you have enough in your roll to not worry. I know it will improve your play at the tables and make the trip much more enjoyable.

  •  Just playing at Intertops while watching the One Drop!
    4. Pace yourself! Burn out is waaayy too easy at the WSOP!   Six weeks of nonstop poker is sheer craziness! haha I have a new respect for pros that play this every year and honestly, a little bit of pity. The way I and many others went about playing this series is not a way to live, even for 6 weeks! lol Doing nothing else besides playing poker is mentally abusive to ourselves and just not healthy. Being in a casino everyday, while fun for a bit, but gets very old very fast. Dealing with the smoke, the table games, the alcohol and the same degenerate players really takes a toll on you.  You need to make sure you are are balanced and not just grinding away the experience! There’s always another tourney! Thats the beauty of it! If you bust out, leave the casino and do something besides poker! Poker (actually another amazing tourney) will be there tomorrow! Also be sure to schedule days off completely. You might not think you need the break, but trust me, you do.  I was delusional thinking I could play everyday for 12-15 hour days and be at my best! If I took more time off completely, I know my game would have been better and my bankroll would be fatter lol.
    5. Enjoy the Experience! Remember you’re at the WSOP! Its the biggest and best tournament series of the year! It’s poker heaven!  And It’s Vegas! Have fun! Take time to enjoy the process. Poker is supposed to be fun, right?! If it’s not, then what’s the point! You should wake up everyday and smile at the thought you get another shot at poker fame and tons of cash!  Appreciate how lucky we are to be able to play a game like this! Soak it all up! Take pictures, meet Pros you’ve only see on TV, watch a final table in the thunderdome, have a fancy meal, see a show, hit the clubs and the pool!  I mean, it is Vegas! and the WSOP is a spectacle to say the least! ! lol There’s always something going on, poker related or not! I regret not making more time for all these things and really diving into the whole thing.  Unlimited poker isn’t always a good thing. Put the chips down and have some fun somewhere else! 
    The WSOP goes by way to fast and painfully slow at the same time lol When things are going well it’s over all too quick and when things are going  bad, you cannot get on that plane home fast enough lol It’s the part were you have these feelings all in one day that’s hard to describe, but I’m sure most players understand what I mean! lol Hopefully others reading this can learn from my very expensive lessons and not make these same mistakes. And If you’re around for next years WSOP and see me doing any of these things, you have my permission to slap me in the face with a copy of this! lol;)
    Run Good,