Saturday, June 27, 2009

Las Vegas Trip Report
I left from the Indianapolis Airport on Thursday, June 18. Since it was Southwest's anniversary celebration, the first drink was free. Not a bad way to start the trip. A good omen perhaps?

I spent six nights at the Imperial Palace. You can't beat the location and the room was cheap. No problem checking in or out (I used the express check out), and had no long waits with the elevators. I was only in the hotel to sleep, and it once again suited me just fine.

WSOP Tournament Report

I played in the WSOP Event # 43 -- the Seniors NL Hold Em World Championship. I was, of course, one of the younger players, which was interesting. I had heard that this tournament was fun, and that it was. Players were serious about their poker, but they took everything in stride. No whiny or butthole youngsters who think they are God's gift to poker.

Unfortunately, the measly 3,000 starting chips hampered a lot of regular poker play. My table was solid and pretty tight with only one maniac. Unfortunately, I was never able to get any action from him when I had a good hand. The levels lasted one hour, which was great, but my table was way tight. We had only lost one player (flopped set of Queens vs a flopped set of Kings) in the first 3 1/2 hours, and then my table was broken. I was moved to one with players with much bigger stacks.

About six hours into the tournament and seeing my M fall to single digits, I woke up to find Q-Q in early position. The player to my right (another shorty) went all in, so of course, I did also. No one else came in the hand, and I was horrified to see that I was up against 8-8! I was knocked out of a WSOP circuit event earlier in the year when my K-K couldn't hold against 8-8. At home, our grandfather clock kept chiming at 8 minutes after the hour for some reason. Just before I left for this trip, my wife and I joked about my need to avoid 8's.

Well, you guessed it -- the flop brought an 8 and I got no help on the turn or river. Out. Just like that.

The deflation I felt was unbelievable. This was my first Las Vegas WSOP tournament. I went out when I was an 80% favorite. Ouch.

My wife was able to console me somewhat over the phone. She did remind me that I would look back on this a little differently after I got home. She was, of course, right. At least I got my money in good. There will be a next time. But it still sucked.

Bloggers, Bloggers, and More Bloggers

One of my goals this trip was to meet as many bloggers as possible. I am happy to report that I met several.

cmitch - We had lunch at the Rio. Mitch was nursing a hangover. I was probably making his head go bong with my excited conversation since I was hyped and ready to go with the WSOP. For some reason I expected him to be much younger (gotcha!). Quality guy.

Bayne - Had a good conversation with him at the Paris sports book bar. Talked a little O-8 and NL Hold Em. Gave me some insights into other bloggers since he has met several. I'll bet he is really fun when he gets a few brews in him!

Shabazz Jenkins - Had a few beers with Jeremy just outside the Bally's poker room. He was a little bummed since he had been making good progress in the deep stack tournaments but had gotten screwed several times. Talked about poker and family life since he now has a very young one at home. Nice guy and tough tournament player.

Memphis MOJO - Played a little 1-2 NL at Bally's with Dave and had dinner with him one night. He was pretty much as he appears in his blog and his blog comments -- a really nice guy. I hope that I'll get to see him again in a few weeks if I take my family on a two-day trip to Memphis.

CK - Met her during a break in WSOP Event # 46. Bubbly and energetic, it is easy to see why so many people like her.

LJ - Recognized her during the first break in my WSOP tournament. Punked her big-time by acting like a total doofus asking about locations of bathrooms and bitching about them. Thanks for the encouragement during my tournament, LJ!

TuscaloosaJohnny - Briefly met him at the Rio. He was just coming for his trip and I was on my last night.

lucko - Met him while on break on my tournament. He was sweating sprstoner, who was down to the final two tables in a tournament.

The BIG Hand

One of the many reasons I love to play cash games at Bally's is the high hand jackpots. I had never won one, however ... until this trip. On Saturday, June 20, I walked into the Bally's poker room early in the afternoon. I sat down and folded three hands before I played my first one. I was dealt A-10clubs. I limped in and saw two clubs on the flop, including the Queen. One player raised and I called. The turn was a King of clubs, giving me the nut flush -- and a Royal Flush draw. My opponent checked, so I of course checked behind. The river was the Jack of clubs, giving me my first brick and mortar Royal Flush! Unfortunately, someone had hit the clubs Royal Flush recently and the high hand jackpot was only $681. I did accept it, however -- he he.

Poker Room Report

Bally's - My favorite room. Great friendly dealers including Tricia and Gianna. Tricia almost dealt me my second Royal -- if only she had given me the Queen of hearts, not clubs, on the river. I also had four clubs to a second Royal Flush after one flop. Man, would a second Royal have been spectacular or what? Friendly play and below average players are the hallmarks of this room. Oh -- and Liliane's raspy voice shouting "Cocktails? Anyone want a drink?"

MGM - Only played for a few hours and made a small profit. I still like this room, but wish they had high hand jackpots there.

Caesar's Palace - Played a short time there but could not get moved to Memphis MOJO's table. I haven't liked the cash games there ever since I ran my K-K into A-A ...

Hard Rock - Only one table going. Great eye candy as gorgeous women in swim suits parade past the poker room. Sat at a table with a couple of drunk cowboys, though, and didn't like the atmosphere.


** Had a successful trip at the cash tables. The Royal Flush at Bally's didn't hurt.
** What is the issue with Jager Bombs? I ordered one at MGM and was told that they do not serve it without ice. I ordered one at Hard Rock and was told that the drink was not comped and that it would cost $3. I guess the crappy economy and the cost of Red Bull conspired against me.

** The Victorian Room at Bill's Gambling Hall still is my late-night restaurant. Excellent steak and eggs special.

** Met Penn and Teller and got a program signed for my son, a big fan.

** Saw almost all the big names in poker, which is always fun. And ... Clonie Gowan is sizzling hot !!

** The WSOP experience was great. I will plan on playing one or two events next year.


Blogger smokkee said...

vg trip report. i wish MGM had bad beat jackpots, i woulda taken down a nice payout one time.

I had a straight flush once at Commerce but never picked up a Royal Flush in a live game before. Nice job.

btw, i hate QQ more than I fear 88.

8:29 PM  
Blogger Memphis MOJO said...

Nice recap and good to meet you, too. Let me know if/when you come to Memphis - Corky's, my treat. Congrats on the royal - cribs always get there.

8:56 PM  
Blogger jusdealem said...

Very nice trip report.

LOL at your video link in my comments! :)

10:37 PM  
Blogger Mondogarage said...

Awesome report, and glad to read that the trip was (for the most part) awesome. Wish I could have been there this year.

3:17 PM  
Blogger OhCaptain said...

Well done! Hold your head up, getting your money in good is all we can ever hope to do.

Royals ROCK (not the KC ones...they kinda suck)

9:13 PM  
Blogger BrainMc said...

See there is an advantage to getting older. Thanks for the fun trip report, maybe I'll have some success stories to share at the end of July.

4:09 PM  
Blogger BWoP said...

It was great to meet you in person! Thanks for the rail support during my O-8 tourney.


3:03 AM  

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