1. We redrew at 14. The final two tables looked like this;

    1 Luke Neeloy<SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN>75k

    2 Patrick Antonius <SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN>80k

    3Todd Gierhan<SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN>58k

    4 Jim Nicoulin<SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN>105k

    5 Layne Flack<SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN>165k

    6 Amir Vahedi<SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN>107k

    7<SPAN> </SPAN>Me<SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN>320k

    1 Chip Jett<SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN>115k

    2 Philippe Rouas <SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN>70k

    3 Bill Edler<SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN>190k

    4 Andy Bloch<SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN>140k

    5 Doug ‘Rico’ Carli<SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN>93k

    6 Jason Cotray<SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN>58k

    7 Thomas Koral <SPAN> </SPAN><SPAN> </SPAN>94k

    <SPAN>I had a nice lead at this point, and Amir was back on my right, where he’d been throughout almost the whole tournament.<SPAN> </SPAN>With Layne to his right, I liked my position. We were moved to the TV table. I thought the TV pressure, combined with the fact that only 10 places were paid, would have the effect of severely tightening up Luke, Todd and Jim, who were inexperienced in this type of situation. I planned to stay aggressive and try to build my lead at their expense. </SPAN>

    <SPAN> </SPAN>

    <SPAN>After Amir lost about 20k in a pot with Jim, we got involved. (Since Pokerwire reported on much of the action, I’ll use their transcripts and add my comments). </SPAN>

    <SPAN> </SPAN>

    <SPAN>Amir Vahedi doubles through Blair Rodman</SPAN><SPAN>
    Amir Vahedi raised to 8k and Blair Rodman re-raised to 25k. Vahedi called and the flop came </SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>[</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=diams1><SPAN>Q?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>][</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=spades1><SPAN>7?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>][</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=hearts1><SPAN>7?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>]</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN>. Vahedi checked to Rodman who pushed in and Vahedi called all in for 62.1k. The players turned up:

    Amir Vahedi </SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>[</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=clubs1><SPAN>J?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>][</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=clubs1><SPAN>Q?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>]</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN>
    Blair Rodman </SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>[</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=diams1><SPAN>10?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>][</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=hearts1><SPAN>10?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>]</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN>

    The turn and river came </SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>[</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=hearts1><SPAN>Q?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>][</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=hearts1><SPAN>9?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>]</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN> and Vahedi took the pot with a full house Q's</SPAN><SPAN> over 7</SPAN><SPAN>'s to double up.</SPAN>

    <SPAN> </SPAN>

    <SPAN>I really wasn’t sure what Amir could have called with pre-flop, rather than folding or re-raising all in. (I was a bit surprised he put that big of a percentage of his stack with QJ). When he called before the flop, I was wishing I’d raised a bit more. I’d have been happy to take it there. Once the flop came down, there was no way I could get away from it. His play of checking, my going all in, and his call were all pretty much automatic. No miracle ten for me, and Amir was back in the hunt. I really would have liked to see him take the long walk. He’s too dangerous to let hang around. </SPAN>

    <SPAN> </SPAN>

    <SPAN>I lost almost 90k in that pot, and was down to about 220k. Soon after, this pot came up:</SPAN>

    <SPAN> </SPAN>

    <SPAN>Blair Rodman knocks out Layne Flack</SPAN><SPAN>
    Layne Flack limped, Amir Vahedi limped, and Blair Rodman raised from the button. Flack was the only caller and the flop came </SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>[</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=diams1><SPAN>A?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>][</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=clubs1><SPAN>J?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>][</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=hearts1><SPAN>7?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>]</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN>. Flack got all in against Rodman on the flop and the players turned up:

    Layne Flack </SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>[</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=diams1><SPAN>K?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>][</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=diams1><SPAN>6?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>]</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN>
    Blair Rodman </SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>[</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=hearts1><SPAN>A?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>][</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=spades1><SPAN>J?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>]</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN>

    The turn and river came </SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>[</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=diams1><SPAN>3?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>][</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=clubs1><SPAN>A?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>]</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN> and Layne Flack was eliminated in 14th place.</SPAN>

    <SPAN> </SPAN>

    Actually, there were 5 limpers for 3k in the pot, including the small blind. I made it 20k from the BB, figuring to take it there. I talked to Layne about the hand yesterday when I saw him at the Bellagio. He knew I didn’t have to have a big hand to make a play at that pot pre-flop, especially with a big stack. On the flop, he checked and I bet 25k into a 35k pot. He moved in for about 140k more. He figured I couldn’t call with a weak ace, which was probably true. He was unlucky that the flop hit me that hard. However, I think this is the time for a discussion of a related topic:

    There’s a poker term I saw in a magazine the other day that I love. It’s a disease called ‘playing backwards’. Many inexperienced players are afflicted with this. It comes in many forms, but the basic characteristic is playing strong hands weakly, and vice versa. It’s related to the old adage about tells, where players act strong when weak, and weak when strong. Playing backwards can be deadly against good players.Think about it. If I’m playing behind you and I know that in many cases you’ll raise a pot, then check if you hit the flop looking for a check-raise, but you’ll bet if you miss, my strategy is to call or raise if you bet and take a free card you if you check, unless I’ve got a big hand. If you’ve bet the flop, I call and you check the turn, I can make a rather small play at the pot, which will often be successful.

    In the hand above, had I checked on the flop, Layne would have been alerted to the fact that I might have a monster, and I doubt I could have gotten his whole stack. (Although in this case it might have happened anyway, because he picked up a flush draw on the turn.) He knew I didn’t have to have a big hand pre-flop, but I also knew that he knew. When the flop came, I did everything possible, both thru my demeanor and the size of my bet, to look like I was making a phony continuation bet.

    There’s another example of playing backwards that’s related to pre-flop play and the Kill Phil strategy. When a tournament reaches the move-in stage, many players know to not let their stack dwindle, and will move in with a mid-strength hand rather than make a raise that is too easily called. However, these same players will make a smaller raise if they happen to pick up aces or kings. This seems to make sense—you want action with those hands. However, sharp players will pick up on this, will avoid your big hands, and strongly consider calling your all in’s with hands that don’t appear to justify it. As I described in my report from the last final event at the Plaza back in July, Andy Bloch made a call of a hefty-sized all in by Chau Giang, with A-J. Chau had moved in pre-flop several times at the final table, and Andy correctly sniffed it out and made a great call. The antidote to this is to go ahead and make the all in move with the whole range of hands that you’ll play, not just the weaker ones. We discuss this in Kill Phil when discussing the play of aces under the heading “The Most Deceptive Play of All”. In fact, I saw this happen yesterday at the Bellagio. A player, who had previously moved in several times, put in about 25k at the 600/1200 level. He got called by a surprisingly weak hand and showed aces. A lot of eyebrows went up at the table, but I thought it was a great play. If the Kill Phil strategies become more widely used in the future, players are going to make adjustments in their thinking about pre-flop play. Hopefully we’ll be able to keep you up to speed on our website.

    I now had close to 400k. Amir knocked out Day 1 chip leader Patrick Antonius in 12<SUP>th</SUP> place with 88 vs AQ when he flopped quad 8’s. Amir now had about 250k. The tournament director moved Philippe Rouas, with about 46k, to Layne’s ex-seat.

    <SPAN>Vahedi and Rodman chop</SPAN><SPAN>
    Blair Rodman raised to 10k from under the gun and Amir Vahedi called from the big blind. The flop came </SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>[</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=diams1><SPAN>Q?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>][</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=clubs1><SPAN>10?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>][</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=clubs1><SPAN>3?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>]</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN> and both players checked. The turn came </SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>[</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=diams1><SPAN>2?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>]</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN> and Vahedi bet. Rodman called and the river came </SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>[</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=hearts1><SPAN>3?</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>]</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN>. Vahedi bet 25k on the river and Rodman called saying he wanted to see Vahedi's hand. The players turned up:

    Amir Vahedi </SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>[</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=nosuit1><SPAN>A</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>][</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=nosuit1><SPAN>5</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>]</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN>
    Blair Rodman </SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>[</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=nosuit1><SPAN>A</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>][</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=nosuit1><SPAN>4</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN class=invis1><SPAN>]</SPAN></SPAN><SPAN>

    They laughed while the dealer chopped the pot.</SPAN>

    <SPAN> </SPAN>

    <SPAN> </SPAN>

    This was a funny hand. We had played so many pots against each other that we’d about exhausted every play in our arsenals. I had Ac 4c. I could probably have won the pot with a bet on the flop, but Amir had a big stack, and I wanted a shot at it. If I made the flush and he had a hand, I could trap him badly, as he would not figure me to check there with a flush draw. And I didn’t want him to make a big re-raise that I couldn’t call. The turn gave me a wheel draw to go with the flush draw. He made a rather small bet on the turn. I called and prayed for a miracle that could bust him. When the 3 came on the river, he quickly bet 25k. I started to fold, but something stopped me. I tried to figure what he could be betting. His bet on the turn was too small to indicate a good hand that he wanted to protect against the possible draws on board. The river bet was 25k into about a 45k pot. Why would he make this bet? He could be trying to get a hand like tens or a weak queen paid off, but thought that if he had a hand like that he’d check and hope I’d bluff at it. I finally put him on a busted straight draw, some thing like J9 or KJ, or maybe a pure bluff. I didn’t give him an ace, because I thought that if he had an ace, he’d think it might be good in a showdown if I had a busted draw and wouldn’t need to bet. If I’d thought an ace was a possibility, a small raise would have been the right play. If I’d had a little more time to think it through, I might have come up with a small ace as a possibility. However, if he had that hand, I’d still get half, so it probably wouldn’t be worth risking making a raise. Perhaps the deciding factor in not folding was that he was talking to me. The more he talked, the more I felt he was bluffing.

    <SPAN> </SPAN>

    <SPAN>This is getting long. I’ll finish Day 2 in another post</SPAN><SPAN>.</SPAN>
    Add Blair Rodman to Rail
  2. Thank you for sharing, it is appreciated.

    And GL
    Add pclark to Rail
  3. The suspense is killing me.
    Add Petoria to Rail
  4. Another amaizing post, thank you kindly Mr. Rodman.
    Add Anbessa to Rail
  5. i love these posts, but it makes me realize I'm not thinking enough when I play. Playing on feel works well at times, but I need to be thinking more, and these posts show that in spades. Thanks, Blair.
    Add mjf21 to Rail
  6. OK. I'm behind the curve here.

    Would someone please school me on what KillPhil poker is?
    Add Dunce to Rail
  7. great info. thanks for taking the time to post.
    Add seeeeb to Rail
  8. Great post, your great and intelligent insights are very much appreciated.
    Add that_pope to Rail
  9. This may be a bit long-winded, but I want to give readers here an idea of what I'm talking about when I refer to Kill Phil. Kill Phil is a book by myself and New Zealand/Australia pro Lee Nelson. Many of you probably have never heard of Lee because he doesn't play in the states, but the man can play! He was the voted best player down under for the past 5 years.

    A liitle background on the book:

    We started talking about writing a poker book in the fall of 2004. We drew up a great outline on all aspects of NLH tournaments. The problem was, there was going to be a flood of books hitting the market by the time ours was ready, and I didn't want to do that much work on a book that wouldn't get read. I was getting ready to abandon the idea and go about the business of playing when we had a discussion about the changing face of the game.

    Lee talked of his experiences with various Scandinavian players he had encountered in tournaments around the world, and how, as a group, <SPAN> </SPAN>they used aggressive big-bet poker so effectively. I talked of Sklansky’s ‘system’, and how, while simplistic, it could still be effective for a rookie player. Using those discussions as a starting point, we set about developing an in-depth strategy for big bet poker in no-limit tournaments.

    The essence of Kill Phil is that the best players are reluctant to risk their whole tournament on a coin flip, while the less skilled player should welcome the opportunity to double up on a coin flip. Not only that, but the pros propensity to back down from these confrontations allows the KP player to pick up a lot of pots uncontested.

    Beyond that, I think many experienced no-limit players, especially those who specialize in cash games, are a bit lacking in big pot, pre-flop play. We think Kill Phil is a valuable edition to any players’ library.

    We have a number of posters on our forum, killphilpoker.com who had limited poker experience, bought the book, and have been experimenting with the strategy. Some of them post their results and/or ask questions, which Lee and I do our best to answer. Almost all of them have good things to report. Here’s a report (unedited) from someone new to our site which I think shows how the KP strategy can benefit players of all skill levels------

    <SPAN>Hello All,
    I read Kill Phil earlier this week, and have begun incorporating certain aspects of the strategy. A little background:

    - I've been playing NL Hold'em on a regular basis for about 9 months; I've probably played somewhere in the neighborhood of 50K Hands (mostly low-stakes ring games; but have also played in alot of tourneys). Just about all of my experience has come from playing online.

    - I'm comfortable with playing small-ball, both before & after the flop. I'm convinced I'll never stop learning the intricacies of post-flop play (a must to thrive in Ring Games)

    - I post somewhat regularly on the 2+2 forums, which is where I learned about the book. All of the reviews I read were positive.

    One particular leak that I had been working on was the tendency to tighten up when I should be pulling the trigger (aka "weak-tight"). I think just about everyone goes through this stage; you start to develop certain instincts (reads), but aren't confident enough to trust them & follow-through. After reading the book, I decided that I would focus solely on tournaments (for now), combining my experience (in tourneys & ring games) with the Kill Phil Strategy. Though I have a solid understanding of inflection point play in NL Tournaments, I decided I was going to take more initiative to prevent from becoming a shortstack. If I go broke trying, so be it.

    After reading the book, I was motivated to begin implementing Kill Phil. I decided that I was going to be the one to push other players around. My first few tournaments were quite interesting, as I became the "Captain Insano" of the table! For example, if I raised pre-flop, and hit TPTK (top pair, top kicker) or a decent draw, all of the money was going in if I got played with! Needless to say, this isn't a very good idea when it's early in the tournament; there's no reason to go broke with top pair or a draw at this stage. I ran into a few sets, got outdrawn a couple of times, and even busted out with TPTK in the very first hand of a tournament with AKs (a first for me)! You could say I was just a tad bit overzealous w/ my execution of Kill Phil!!!

    Despite the fact I busted out all of these times from playing this way, it had a positive side effect. I was no longer worried about busting out, and I learned the importance of putting constant pressure on your opponents (instead of waiting around for something to happen). I believe I got settled in late last night. During the last (4) Single-Table Sit-&-Gos I've played in, I placed 1st, 1st, 3rd, and 1st (respectively).

    I attribute my recent good run to the following factors (aside from Lady Luck):

    - I settled down during the beginning stages, and played my normal game. That is, I played small-ball before & after the flop, and tried raking in as many small pots as possible. I'm playing patient & observant poker at this stage.

    - After the 4th or 5th round (when the size of the blinds start to matter), I start to selectively execute the Kill Phil Strategy along w/ my small-ball game. I pick my spots, and move in to pick up the blinds. I'm not too worried if I get called because I'll usually have a good chance of doubling-up. I was really mind-boggled at the number of times my opponents kept folding their hands when I used this tactic. I guess they were waiting for AA or KK so they could bust me! I believe Kill Phil really shines when you need to keep up with the blinds to prevent from becoming a "nothing stack". Having said this, I recommend treating Kill Phil with a great deal of care & judgmentl. It's very easy to turn into "Captain Insano" and overdo it (at least from my perspective)!

    Another aspect of Kill Phil I really like is it's flexibility. I found I was able to incorporate it into my game without following a bunch of rigid guidelines. The book does an excellent job of acknowledging that the key to long-term success is obtaining alot of experience in a wide variety of situations.

    I just wanted to say hi, and give my "two thumbs up" for Kill Phil!

    Best Regards,

    BTW, has anybody here read the book? I'd be interested inn any feedback.
    Thx, Blair
    Thread StarterAdd Blair Rodman to Rail

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