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Colossus III and WSOP Trip Report | Poker Podcast #142


Sky Matsuhashi

on June 10, 2017

In this episode, I discuss my first WSOP cash in this year’s Colossus III.  I also gained some important LIVE MTT insights.

Download and listen to this episode as you follow along below.


Visiting Las Vegas, Dates and Weather (1:30)

The wife and I flew in and Ubered over to the Gold Coast.  It's directly across from the Rio and is a bit less crowded and quieter.  Found out on this trip that China Town is only :10 away.

SPS Meet-up (2:20)

The meetup took place at the Bowling Alley in the Gold Coast Casino.  We had a good time even though there were only 2 people who joined my wife and I.

Tricia Cardner hung out for the whole time.

  • She’s giving away free stuff all summer, so make sure you follow her on Twitter @DrTriciaCardner
  • You can also get $20 off her course on procrastination by visiting and using offer code WSOP2017.

Andrew Pieper (bikeking19 on YT) hung out and chatted as well.

David O. came by but didn’t see us.

Ralph M. lives in Vegas and we hung out during a Colossus break.

I enjoyed meeting all of you finally face to face.

Cash Games (4:35)

The RIO has tons of cash game action; NLHE, PLO, mixed games at all levels.

Lost ½ a buy-in at 1/3.  Need to play LIVE more and get a feel for how LIVE players play.  Very loose and stationy.

Flopped quad 3’s

  • 33 in the SB, MP minopened to $6, I overcalled and it was 4-way to flop
  • Flop 337 ss. Quads!  I checked and called the pfr’s cbet, one other caller and a fold.
  • Turn was an off-suit Ace. Still fd possible.  I figured there would be another bet by somebody floating the flop w/ an Ace.  Or, I figured if I led out on the Ace I’m getting all non-Aces to fold, so checking seemed like the best way to get value from bluffs and from an Ace who may bet w/TP.  So I check and it checks around.
  • River Ts, so 337AT with three spades. I hoped that somebody with a fd hit and would pay me off, or maybe a weak Ace would pay me off.  So I bet out $30 into $50 and they all folded.
  • I should’ve bet smaller to induce a bluff. Getting aggressive on the three flush was a bad idea.
  • Lesson learned: I should’ve bet smaller on the river.  The fact that nobody bet the turn meant no Aces were present and no fd’s either.

Colossus III (9:10)

Flight A

  • 10am start
  • 5K in chips and :30 levels. Turbo structure with about 10 hands per level on average.
  • Nothing super eventful happened. Won two small pots early on then slowly lost as I saw flops but didn’t hit anything and couldn’t find any good bluffing spots.
  • Made it to break, then came back at 8bb’s. Open shoved the SB w/A7o and took it down pre-flop.
  • Next SB open shoved w/AQo and the BB called w/ATo. He caught a T and that ended my flight A run.

Flight E

  • Decided to go at it again on Sunday.
  • Got off to a great start and doubled-up in the first level. I won a few smaller pots then this happened:
    • UTG opened to 125 with 8s7s at the 25/50 level. I got 4 callers including the blinds, so we went to the flop 5 ways with 625 in the pot.
    • Flop 962cc. So, I hit the oesd.  I bet 500, got a fold, then the BTN raised me to 1,100.  The blinds folded and it was up to me to call 600 to win a total pot after my call of 2,825, so I only needed 21% equity.  Now, having only 6 outs to the nut straight (b/c of the fd I didn’t count the Tc and the 5c as outs), I only had 12% equity to win.  But, I figured he could be making this smallish raise with a fd of his own, so I had an additional 6 outs to pair my 8 or 7.  With 12 total outs, I was looking at 24% equity, so I made the call.
    • The turn pot is 2,825 and a non-club Ten hits, giving me the nut straight. I figured this player would bet again so I checked, he bet and I c/r ai.  He wasted no time at all calling with a Kc8c, so he had the fd+gs+overcard King.
    • If I were him I think I would’ve checked-behind the turn to see a free river card to hit my flush or straight. I think he unnecessarily risked his tourney life with a non-ai turn bluff.
    • I ended the hand with twice the starting stack at 10,825 chips.


  • In order to record all these hand details, I bring my physical poker journal with me.  I write down the significant hands that happen with all the actions and sizings.
    • I do this to review my hands later
    • This also helps me to keep focused on my play. I can only record important details if I’m paying attention.

Love those Aces

  • 5 hands after the 87s hand, we were in level 2 and I was dealt the beautiful AA.
    • The guy I crippled with the 87s shoved for 3.5bb’s.
    • I was in the BB and the SB (nice lady) 3bet iso-raised to 8.5bb’s. I figured she had a strong hand and was hoping she’d call or 5bet over my raise, so I 4bet to 20bb’s.  She obliged and 5bet jammed and I called.  As soon as I called she groaned and knew I had AA.  She showed me KK.  The ss shover had 97s, which is a great hand to play here.
    • Flop came T93, so he flopped a pair. The turn came a T, pairing the board, then the river blanked.  I KO’d two players with my AA and was now up to roughly 17K.
    • It was over a 3x starting stack and only in level 2!
  • Kept chipping up and up, then in Level 4 another great hand occurred where I KO’d another player with my TPTK on the flop and he shoved with his fd. The draw didn’t get there and this vaulted me up to 30K in chips before the first break.
  • So this was great, made it to the first break with 6x starting stack. I was super pumped but I kept my emotions in control and told myself that it’s still one hand at a time.  I needed to still make the best decision possible with every opportunity if I was going to cash.
  • When we returned to level 5, I had 30,350 in chips and this was the most I’d have for the rest of the day.

The Big Hit

  • I took a big hit when my JJ called my opponent ai on the turn with AK, and she rivered the Ace. It was okay though b/c I just went from 30K to 20K at the 200/400 level, so I was still sitting pretty with 50bb’s.
  • That’s the thing about tourneys. You’ve got to put everything in perspective to help you keep your composure.  I tried to look at the situation like I had 50bb’s.  At my table there was only one player with more than me.  I may have just taken a 25bb hit, but I was still far and away above most of the other players and there was tons of play at 50bb’s.  Keeping things in perspective helps me to stay positive.
  • It wasn’t a big roller coaster, but from this point on my stack when up and down here and there, and when we made the money in level 12 I had 15bb’s at the 800/1600 level.
  • The bubble was cool in that it only lasted for one hand-for-hand hand. It paid out at 595 players, which was a full 60 tables in the room.  There were so many short-stacks and I was happy for that.
  • At my table, and I got to see some great aggressive actions taking down pots. One player named Katie Lindsay was being dealt some great hands, and she used them to almost run over the table.  I never got into any conflicts with her, but I don’t know how many people she KO’d.  There was also a great Brazilian player there named Bruno Politano.  Thankfully, I had position on both him and Katie so I was able to avoid lots of their aggression.

An Important Note

  • Often when the bubble bursts players start getting knocked out like crazy. In big fields like this, don’t get stupid and start shoving randomly.  The min-cash was $833, and by staying alive and playing patiently for another 2 hours, I moved up the ladder to $1,366.  Pay attention to those pay jumps b/c if forgoing a small EV edge will earn you a few more hundred dollars, it’s totally worth it.

Busting Out vs Moorman1

  • I got moved to seat 5 of a new table with some super big stacks. (btw I was the only one from my original table to make the money).
  • Bruno got moved with me.
  • Seated to my direct left was Chris Moorman. You all know him, I’m sure.  He had a rail of friends watching him play.  He was in the 20bb range, so all of his plays were timely shoves in later position.
  • Anyway, I had just double-up with AK vs K4, but then the blinds went up and I was down to 5bb’s. It was folded to me and I had A3o, so of course I shoved.  Moorman re-iso shoved with ATo and he KO’d me.
  • I went out in 230th place for the day, and 1,090th

Amazingly, there were 3,966 runners for the day, so my 230th place finish put me in the final 6% of the field.  I’m super stoked about my results and I’m looking forward to a better placing next year.

Lessons Learned (22:00)

I'm a thief.

I'm a hunter.

Ask yourself: “What’s my edge over these players, and what’s my game plan vs each of them?”

Pay attention to every hand, and learn from SD's.

Don't show your hand unless absolutely necessary.  Muck the losing hand and don't give opp's free info.


Here’s my challenge to you for this episode:  Get out there and play a LIVE tournament.  They can be a lot of fun and good learning experiences.  Take your online game and see if you can apply it to the LIVE realm.

Now it’s your turn to take action and do something positive for your poker game.


Sky Matsuhashi

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