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Monday, February 25, 2008

2008 MPT Tentative Schedule

Edited and updated:

Yes, I know you've all been waiting for news of when the MPT is coming to your area. Well, we really don't come to your area (although we do make some exceptions), you have to come to us.

Here are some future dates to keep in mind for this year's Tour:

April 27: Atlantic City event (Most likely Bally's)
May 25: Turning Stone, Verona, NY*
June 7: ECLVA "Spring" Classic event* (TENTATIVE DATE)
July 6: Atlantic City event (Another House of Blues suite?)
August 8 0r 9: Las Vegas event*
September TBD: ECLVA "Summer" Classic (and H.O.R.S.E. tournament)
September 20-27: Carnival Carribean Cruise event*
October TBD: Atlantic City event (Showboat?)
November TBD: Possible Atlantic City event (Caesars?)*
December 27: Main Event (we'll try for Harrah's)

I've ironed out some dates (Saturday's) where we held tourney's last year (except for the March event, which has moved to April). We've added some dates to the tour this year:

  • The May ECLVA "Spring" Classic event
  • I will be in Turning Stone Memorial Day weekend and would be up for hosting an event there.
  • We'll be in Las Vegas in August and are hoping to hold our first Las Vegas based MPT.
  • We're taking our anniversary cruise at the end of September, and what better way to celebrate than have an event on the actual date of the event's beginning!
  • Hopefully we can add the November Caesars event.
Additional dates are always a possibility. We look forward to your support this year!

EDITED 4/24/2008 to correct April date and add tentative date for May event
EDITED 5/13/2008 to correct June (formerly May) event date and likely dates for July and August events

Friday, February 22, 2008

Pictures from MPT 2007 Tournament of Champions

The new MPT Tournament of Champions trophy was unveiled.

Mr. Betdponies stares down Mrs. Betdponies as heads up play begins.

Harv29, Bigfus, Mr. and Mrs. Betdponies look on during heads up play.

The Betdponies family reacts as the final river card falls.

The champion celebrates remaining undefeated on the mattress.

A closer look at the cards from the final hand.

The champion with the trophy that he will hold for the next year.

MPT 2007 Tournament of Champions (12/27/2007)

(originally posted 1/3/2008, by Harv29)

The participants:
  • harv29 - Host and Tournament Director
  • betdponies - Two Time MPT Champion, including last year's ToC
  • rowanb - hoping to take advantage of the absence of PoY point leader tss777
  • sweeney - second place finisher from Event #3 returns for his second MPT event
  • Mrs. betdponies - 3rd place in October earned a spot in this year's ToC
  • bigfus - cashing in on her cash in last year's end of year extravaganza

The Results:
  1. betdponies
  2. Mrs. betdponies
  3. harv29
  4. sweeney
  5. bigfus
  6. rowanb

Unfortunately it was a small field for the Main Event but it was still quite festive. Since my wife wasn't there to take hand accounts, I did the best I could.

It was like most MPT events, one hour of chip accumulation and then a pushfest. Well, almost like that. Rowanb pushed all-in on hand #14 and Betdponies folded. Then in hand #21, I pushed all-in with A-6 o/s after a flop of A-K-6. Mrs. Betdponies called me with A-7 o/s and the turn and river came up 9-5.

Either in hand #22 or #23, Mrs. Betdponies was all-in with A-4 o/s against Sweeney’s 8-8. A generous ace on the flop helped Mrs. Betdponies double up.

Later on in hand #31 I made a huge lay down. Sweeney raised pre-flop for something like $300 and the flop came out something like 5-5-9 with two clubs with me holding AcKc. Sweeney opened for $1000 and I only had $1475 remaining. If I called, I knew I’d be going all-in. Did I want to bet all my chips on a draw? I decided to let it go, figuring Sweeney on two pair. . .

Hand #34 saw Rowanb go all-in with Q-10 o/s against Sweeney’s K-5 o/s and the cards came out 3d-2d-9s-Ac-4h giving Sweeney an unnecessary straight and keeping Rowanb’s streak of either going out first or finishing second intact.

Hand #36 saw Mrs. Betdponies severely cripple Bigfus, I think it was A-J against A-Q and then the next hand Betdponies busted Bigfus out.

Hand #44 saw Mrs. Betdponies go all-in with 10d9c against Sweeney’s 3d3c. The flop of 5d-Qc-6d was a glimmer of hope as was the Kd on the turn and the final nail was the Qd on the river giving Mrs. Betdponies the higher flush.

Hand #48 was possibly the monster suck-out of the event, with Sweeney going all-in with AdAh against Betdponies’s QdJc. There was a friendly flop of Qc-2h-9d. The turn was even friendlier with a Jh, giving Betdponies two pair. The river sent Sweeney packing with the Qs giving Betdponies a full house. It was just a few hands later that Mrs. Betdponies busted me out on the bubble.

We were now head’s up with Betdponies and Mrs. Betdponies (who was in trouble most of the tournament, bearly surviving my all-in win on hand #21. After a few hands, I think it ended on hand #53:

Betdponies Jd5d, Mrs. Betdponies 10s8h

Flop: 7c-Js-10d

Betdponies flops top pair, Mrs. Betdponies flops second pair with a gutshot straight draw.

Turn: 9d

Mrs. Betdponies is elated, she has made her straight, but wait, Betdponies now has a flush draw.

River: Ad!

Betdponies has made his flush and wins the MPT MAIN EVENT! He remains undefeated on the pillowtop! Congratulations!

Unfortunately, his two wins happened with the smallest fields, so the MPT Player of the Year is: TSS777!

Tot Pts Rank

20 TSS777
19 Betdponies
18 Harv29
17 Baccarat King
16 Rowanb
15 Bigfus
14 Mrs. Betdponies
12 Sweeney
9 Dave
4 MP
3 Janek13
1 "E"

He is a worthy PotY, with two wins in the two events he played with 7 of the 11 possible eliminations. Who knows what would have happened if the Baccarat King showed up. . .

Thanks for everyone for making the MPT possible. I look forward for the 2008 season!

Pictures from MPT 2007 #4

Not that many pictures from this event, as the photographer managed to actually cash in the event, so what we see is after the tournament ended.

The final showdown, after mtohio called rowanb's short-stacked all-in

The Champion with his trophy

mtohio looks on after his victory

The champion as some of his friends saw him at this late hour

MPT 2007 #4 - Return to the Showboat (10/20/2007)

(originally posted 10/22/2007, by Harv29)

The participants:
  • Seat 1 - Mrs. Betdponies
  • Seat 2 - Meredith – a friend of Michael’s
  • Seat 3 - Eric – mtohio’s brother-in-law
  • Seat 4 - Harv29
  • Seat 5 - Mtohio
  • Seat 6 - Bigfus
  • Seat 7 - Dave – aka "Scarpa", making his return to the MPT
  • Seat 8 - Rowanb

The Results:
  1. Mtohio
  2. Rowanb
  3. Mrs. Betdponies
  4. Bigfus
  5. Dave
  6. Meredith
  7. Harv29
  8. Eric

At stake:
$100 for first place and the MPT trophy and the right to come back in December for the MPT Tournament of Champions
$60 for second place
$40 for third place

Buy-in was $25 + $5, $26 went to the trophy cost and $14 went to a high hand of the night jackpot of aces-full or better. If no high hand, the money will be rolled into the ToC prize pool.

The action:

The rounds were 10 minutes long with blinds starting at $5-$10. There were a couple of all-ins early but no one was busted out during the first hour, which according to Mrs. Harv29's count there were 17 hands before the chip up break, with mtohio leading at the break. Then with the blinds at $75-$150, Eric goes all-in for $475 and is called by Meredith. Eric is holding Ah9d, Meredith AdJc.

The flop comes out 5d-Ks-Kd. Turn is 3c and no 9 for Eric with a Qc on the river and ending Eric’s tournament.

Later in round 25 with the blinds at $200-$400, I hold 8h10d in the BB. mtohio called and Meredith limps in and I check.

Flop: 2h, 10c, 4c

I check the top pair, it is check around.

Turn: 6d

I check, mtohio bets $500, Meredith folds. I have $525 remaining, if I call, I’m going to have to be all-in. mtohio is an unpredictable player, but I have a feeling that I am in front. I go all-in and he, of course, calls, showing 4dKd. He is down to 5 outs, I like my chances, I (being the dealer), burn and turn the river of:


KING?!?!? And just like that, I’m out of the tournament.

Apparently the action got really fast and furious, as in the next hand mtohio, bigfus and Meredith see the flop of:

Js-8d-3c. mtohio bets out $300, bigfus folds and Meredith calls.

Turn: Jh. mtohio bets $500 and Meredith calls.

River: Qh. mtohio bets all-in, Meredith calls.

mtohio shows Jd8c, Jacks full of eights. Meredith shows 9h10h for a queen high straight. Meredith is eliminated from the tournament.

In the next hand, Catherine, Dave and mtohio see the flop:

Qh-10d-10h. Dave bets out $1,000, mtohio calls, bigfus folds.

Turn: Kd. Dave bets $875 all-in, mtohio calls.

River: 2s

Dave shows QsJd, two pair, Queens and Tens. mtohio shows Jc9d, King high straight. Dave is eliminated from the tournament.

Now there are four remaining and three paying spots. Someone is eliminated in the next hand:

Bigfus goes all-in and mtohio calls.

Bigfus shows AcQh and mtohio shows 8c7c.

Flop: Ks-4d-7s

Turn: 5d

Bigfus is looking for an ace or queen but:

River: 7h

mtohio wins with three-of-a-kind, sevens, bigfus has a pair of sevens. Bigfus goes out on the bubble.

With the blinds at $200-$400 and a $25 ante, we find Mrs. betdponies going all-in with mtohio calling.

Mrs. betdponies shows Qs9h, mtohio shows Js8d

Flop: 10s-Jc-10d. mtohio makes two pair but Mrs. betdponies has the open-ended straight draw plus the queen for a higher two pair.

Turn: 4h. Mrs. betdponies still has 11 outs to win.

River: 7c

No luck on the river. Mrs. betdponies goes out in third place and collects $40.

We are now head’s up between rowanb and mtohio. Rowanb having finished second in the July MPT at the House of Blues, which was mtohio’s first MPT.

mtohio won hand 34 and rowanb folded preflop on hand 35. Rowanb won hand 36 when they both checked down the river.

Hand 37: rowanb moves all-in preflop and mtohio calls.

Flop: 9d-10d-7d

Turn: Qh

River: Kc

rowanb shows 6dJc for a straight, king high.
mtohio shows Ah2c for high card, ace.

Hand 38: They see a flop of 9c-Ks-9s and rowanb folds to mtohio’s bet of $900.

Hand 39: rowanb goes all-in preflop for $2,400 and mtohio folds.

Hand 40: mtohio raises $600 preflop, rowanb folds.

Hand 41: mtohio raises $600 preflop, rowanb folds.

Hand 42: mtohio raises $800 preflop, rowanb folds.

Hand 43: rowanb raises all-in for $700, mtohio calls.

Flop: 5s-3h-9d

Turn: 10c

River: Kd

rowanb shows 6c8d for king high, mtohio shows 5d2d for a pair of fives.

rowanb is eliminated in second place for $60.

mtohio wins the MPT and $100!

So not only is he baccarat king and thread hi-jack king he can now call himself an MPT Champion! After Meredith knocked out Eric, mtohio was the Terminator, eliminating everyone in his path. Of course, it didn't hurt that he gained an early chip lead. . .

I'd also like to thank my lovely wife for keeping the poker blog. I just told her I wanted to keep a record of who knocked out who and with what hand, but she kept a record of all of the action. rowanb, if you want me to investigate any chip dumping, let me know, we will review the play. . .

No high hand qualified, so the $14 rolls into the Tournament of Champions prize pool (along with $20 from betdponies (and TSS777 should kick in a $20 as well, perhaps two since he won two this year). Check the Members Meets thread for ToC information!

Pictures from MPT 2007 #3

Some pictures from the action in Stone Harbor, though my autofocus failed before the tourney finished and I didn't realize what was wrong until it was too late to take the traditional champion's snapshots.

Mrs. Janek13 looks on as Harv29, Janek13, tss777, and sweeney remain at the table

The agony of heads up play as tss777 stares down sweeney, while bigfus looks on

This time, sweeney turns the tables on tss777, while Mrs. Janek13 and Harv29 look on

The championship trophy and prize pool

More action from the heads up play, while sweeney watches Harv29's deal

Harv29 counts the prize money, while our MPT accountant watches

MPT 2007 #3 - ECLVA Summer Classic (9/15/2007)

No report was posted on this tournament. The results appear below.

The participants:
  • rowanb - America's Guest plays host
  • harv29 - Tournament Director and guest of the resort
  • sweeney - co-worker of rowanb, playing his first MPT event
  • janek13 - also making his MPT debut
  • tss777 - defending MPT champion
  • bigfus - making first visit to the Rowan Resort

The Results:
  1. tss777 ($100)
  2. sweeney ($50)
  3. harv29
  4. janek13
  5. bigfus
  6. rowanb
3:27:16 pm 9/15/2007: Tournament started
4:43:21 pm 9/15/2007: Rowanb was busted out by sweeney

4:57:56 pm 9/15/2007: Bigfus was busted out by sweeney

5:03:50 pm 9/15/2007: Janek13 was busted out by TSS777

5:06:22 pm 9/15/2007: Harv29 was busted out by sweeney

5:19:11 pm 9/15/2007: sweeney was busted out by TSS777

5:19:11 pm 9/15/2007: Tournament ended

5:19:11 pm 9/15/2007: Total pot: $150.00

5:19:11 pm 9/15/2007: TSS777 ranked 1st, received $100.00

5:19:11 pm 9/15/2007: sweeney ranked 2nd, received $50.00

Pictures from MPT 2007 #2

Limited action shots here, as the MPT photographer was in contention until the last card fell.

Our host in the House of Blues suite (photo courtesy of mtohio)

Players prepare the House of Blues Suite for the tournament

Mtohio after quite a few champagne cocktails

mtohio and son during a break in the action

The champion, tss777, after the final hand

The final board, as tss777's adds another 7 of the flop to eliminate two players

The champ, his trophy, and his liquid fuel

MPT 2007 #2 - Showdown at Showboat (7/5/2007)

(originally posted 7/9/2007, by Harv 29)

The Showboat title was hotly contested with the largest field in MPT history. That with the fact that we were playing on an actual table and not a mattress made it a memorable event.

The participants:
  • Harv29 - your tournament director
  • mtohio - your gracious suite host
  • betdponies - your previous champion
  • tss777 - your resident poker expert
  • rowanb - America's guest
  • "scarpa" - friend of mtohio's
  • bigfus - poker hopeful

The Results:
  1. tss777
  2. rowanb
  3. "scarpa"
  4. Harv29
  5. bigfus
  6. mtohio
  7. betdponies
As usual, the initial hour is a feeling out process, and loaded with alcohol, mtohio was doing alot of feeling. Feeling that Betdponies was bluffing, mtohio called Betdponies's all-in in round 4 and disposed of our past champion and claimed a $10 bounty. But he would not be long to celebrate as tss777 eliminated mtohio 16 minutes later in round 5.

With the blinds and antes getting unrealistically huge, bigfus had to make a stand and went out to tss277 in round 6. I missed a great opportunity to possibly cripple tss777 by folding a 55 after he went all-in ahead of me. I felt that it was a race at best, but I should have raced with me being ahead (tss777 admitted that I was actually way ahead as he bet with 44). Trying to make up for that, I go all-in with my A-8 of clubs. After probing me for information, tss777 assesses that he has the right odds to call and shows me his K-2 of clubs. Although I was ahead, a king on the flop and no further help put me away in fourth place.

Scarpa was struggling as tss777 and rowanb were about equal in chips. Scarpa made a desperation double up late and was up against it again when tss777 went all-in in front of him. scarpa called and rowanb immediately called. Rowanb showed AK and tss77 had A7 and I believe scarpa had 34. Somewhere along the lines a 7 came out and of course AK lost (for those in the Kill Phil thread, you know what I'm talking about).

Tss777 was the overall champion with second place going to rowanb, since he had more chips than scarpa. I'm sure rowanb and or mtohio have photos they can add.

I'm hoping to get two more MPT events in before the Tournament of Champions final in December.

Pictures from MPT 2007 #1

Harv29 counts his remaining chips as heads up play begins.

Betdponies studies his opponent before checking his cards.

Cards are revealed for the final hand, as harv29 sees he is in good shape, but betdponies realizes that he can still win the hand.

The river is kind to betdponies, as a club flush makes him the first 2-time MPT champion.

Harv29's kings could not overcome runner-runner clubs.

The champ with yet another trophy.

However, the real winner of the night did this at Trump Plaza during the post-MPT festivities.

MPT 2007 #1 - Brannigan at Bally's (3/17/2007)

(originally published 3/20/2007, by Harv29)

Well, we had pretty much the same contestants as last time, just one player short.

The participants:
  • betdponies
  • Mrs. betdponies
  • bigfus
  • rowanb
  • harv29

The Results:
  1. betdponies
  2. harv29
  3. bigfus
  4. Mrs. betdponies
  5. rowanb

We were in lovely room 743 of the Dennis Tower at Bally's Atlantic City. It was a smaller room and we did have to "borrow" a few chairs from rowanb's room, which happened to be 781. Good thing no one was coming out of the elevators while we were moving the furniture around. . .

Play was a bit tighter than last time, perhaps because the players knew each other better or perhaps due to lack of quality cards. Everyone made it past the first hour fine except my wife, who while stepping on a stool to get a better picture of the action, fell off and injured her knee, leg, ankle and foot.

I don't remember all of the elimination hands, perhaps the other players do, but this time rowanb was the first to hit the sheet, I think his JJ got taken out by betdponies, who I believe had ace high and hit it in "door number 2". Betdponies then proceeded to eliminate his wife shortly after that leaving the same final three as last time, harv29, bigfus and betdponies.

Betdponies again was the large stack and apparently bigfus was tired of getting her big blinds stolen by betdponies and went all-in. Although she had me covered, I made a gutsy call with my 8-3 s and was relieved to see her 5-3. My 8 high held up and I doubled through bigfus, who was busted out by betdponies on the next hand.

On our first heads up hand, betdponies goes all-in. I peek down at my cards and see a king. I say I've got one good card. Everyone laughs and I squeeze out the other card, it is another king! I immediately call and show my kings. Betdponies is not happy as he shows me his 9-7 of clubs.

So we go to the flop, rowanb has the hand on film, but "door #2" was definitely a 9 and the "door #3" was a club.

Turn card, another club. Betdponies's outs have just increased.

Betdponies deals the river card face down. My wife peeks and it and replaces it face down, bad sign for me. Betdponies flips it over and it is. . .

ANOTHER FRICKIN' CLUB! He hits runner-runner club and kills my pocket kings for the first MPT of the year! (And I didn't even get a chop of the cash like bigfus did last tournament).

So betdponies repeats as MPT champion and adds another trophy to his mantle. He was also the terminator, as he eliminated every player in the tournament. I think next tournament we will have a bounty on his head. . .

I'd love for a few more people to come out to the next MPT and try to unseat the current champion! It might be a longer tournament though. . .

Thanks for everyone showing up and playing and I look forward to the next MPT, to be announced. . .

Forgot to mention that betdponies took down $85 for winning the tournament and I received $40 for second.

rowanb was busted out at 11:39 in Round 5
Mrs. betdponies was busted out at 11:44 in Round 5
bigfus was busted out at 11:53 in Round 6
harv29 was busted out at 12:00 in Round 6

The end comes quick in the MPT. . .

MPT 2006 #2 - Trump Plaza (12/27/2006)

(originally published 12/31/2006, by Harv29)

The final stop for the Mattress Poker Tour had a decent turn out and was fun for everyone.

The participants:
  • RowanB (do I have a flush if they are all black?)
  • betdponies (I will beat you with my 6-4s)
  • betdponies wife (I'd rather be playing video poker)
  • bigfus (don't look at my poker face)
  • tss777 (what did I get involved in?)
  • harv29 (your tournament director and host, can you all really see my cards in the mirror behind me?)
The Results:
  1. betdponies
  2. bigfus
  3. harv29
  4. tss777
  5. rowanB
  6. Mrs. betdponies

The tournament was held in room 1604 of Trump Plaza. This was an interesting room, as it was handicap accessible. The door had two peepholes, one about 5 feet off the ground and the other about half way up. That led to interesting comments as we checked for any new arrivals. . .

Since the tournament was scheduled to only last 2 hours, the first couple rounds were important for chip accumulation. There were not too many exciting hands early on, although I limped in with a 9-7s and thought I lost to Rowanb's Q high flush, except for the fact that he had one spade and one club.

betdponies' wife was the first out and she made a minimum raise with her Q-Q. I asked what the minimum raise I could make, since I wasn't sure if I could make it $600 or $1200. (tss777 KNEW I had a good hand after I asked this question). After making the minimum raise, betdponies' wife went all-in and I had to call with my A-A. I believe I hit an ace on the flop and it was quickly over for her.

Rowanb was to follow shortly and he didn't win too many hands and as he reported, pushed all-in with his 8-10s. Bigfus had to call with her A-A and ran Rowanb out in 5th.

tss777 was next to go, I believe he went all-in against betdponies' bet and found himself behind with his A-6s against 2-2. I believe it was a deuce on the turn that ended tss777's night.

I was the short stack and was getting blinded and soon anted out as well. I looked down at 3-3 and decided that I'd have to make my stand with it. It was really a 'must call' for betdponies and he showed his 6-4s. The flop didn't hit either of us and I was still ahead on the turn, except that it gave betdponies two more outs, as if a three came on the river, he would make a straight. There was no joy in Mudville as I (as the dealer) dropped a 6 down on the river sending me to the rail.

That left betdponies and bigfus to contend for the title and money. The prize split was $100/$50 and betdponies suggested a chop (even though he had a decent chip lead), which bigfus agreed. With the final two players, I unveiled the new prize, a 6" trophy with a black chip engraved for the MPT 2006 Trump Plaza champion (pictures to follow). This we could not chop (as I did not bring a saw) and after a few hands, bigfus felt she had to make her stand with 7-5 (or 6) or hearts and betdponies called with 8-4 of hearts. Eight high held up and the winner of the Trump Plaza MPT event was betdponies.

So congratulations to betdponies!

Looking ahead to 2007, we anticipate the MPT making stops at Harrah's Atlantic City, Bally's Atlantic City, Showboat Atlantic City, Caesar's Atlantic City, Rowanb's shore house in Stone Harbor (possibly a 2-day event), a Las Vegas hotel TBD and the Tournament of Champions possibly to be held at Trump Plaza. Feel free to contact me for details.

Thank you to all the participants and I look forward to seeing you return for next year's tour and new players to join.

Welcome to the Mattress Poker Tour (MPT)

What's the Mattress Poker Tour (MPT), you ask? Why it's only the largest and most prestigious poker series on earth.

OK, maybe that's a bit of an exaggeration, but for a few friends, most of who met through the Las Vegas Advisor message boards the MPT provides a great excuse to get together and play poker. The tournaments are invitational events, but if you're a friend of one of our regular players and travel to Atlantic City, then you're welcome to join us!

So, what's the deal with playing on a mattress? Well, it's mostly about convenience as a hotel room is usually the easiest place for everyone to gather during their casino vacations and the mattress is the only surface large enough to play the game. We could play on the ground, by the "floor poker tour" doesn't have the same ring. Playing above the pillowtops also brings the Tour back to its original roots from Harv's wedding night. Yeah, that's right, the big action that night in Hagerstown, MD was a small poker game in the hotel where the wedding party was staying. One of Harv's friends won the tournament, Harv ended up locked out of his room with no identification, and a new poker series was born.

Since the MPT was founded, soon after Harv's wedding night, the series has grown from a single tournament in its first year, to five tournaments in year two, up to eight events in season three. The MPT has also expanded outside of Atlantic City hotel rooms into a bayside home in Stone Harbor, New Jersey, and even out to Las Vegas during the summer of 2008. With fields growing ever larger and more players eager to participate, the MPT is quickly becoming THE place for folks to launch their poker careers.