Archive for June 14th, 2015

Tournament memories, May 2015 TOCs edition

June 14, 2015

By Matthew E. Milliken
June 14, 2015

It’s May 20, 2015. I’m playing in a World Tavern Poker national championship event in the poker room at the Mohegan Sun casino in, or at least on the outskirts of, Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. Earlier in the day, I’d placed highly in a side tournament before joining, somewhat tardily, this event. It’s called the TOCs final; the acronym stands for Tournament of Champions.

Although I’m late to the table, which I hate, I start off pretty hot. I hit a straight, a flush, a high pair… My stack grows appreciably as I rake in pots.

Standard card tables usually have seating for 10 players. When poker tournaments begin, often only seven or eight seats per table are filled; this lets latecomers join the proceedings with minimal administrative fuss. As players are eliminated in any large tourney, event officials move the remaining people so that the tables have a relatively even number of players. When a table is broken up to balance out the other tables, each player is either given or asked to draw a seat card. (The process is supposed to be random, however it’s done.) This card designates the player’s new table and seat.

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