Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Poker at Talking Stick Resort

Greetings from sunny Arizona! I flew out here Sunday morning. Things are going well so far, including a trip to the Arena Poker Room at Talking Stick Resort in Scottsdale. But first ... a look at the back yard of the house where Mrs. lightning and I are staying.
Yes -- it is not exactly the view we get in central Illinois! One of my brothers moved to Arizona years ago, and I remember hearing about he had to rake his yard.

Car rental prices were very high due to MLB spring training going on, so I opted to rent from something I had never heard of before -- RelayRides.com. Basically, the company has been set up to so you can rent a car from another person. People list their cars and the per day price, and you select. I am renting an older Honda CRX and am saving at least $200 over the crappy lower rung car rental agencies. It has been fine so far.

After using Sunday to relax and socialize with our guests (and watch the excellent college basketball action!), I headed south on Monday to check out my nephew's business (a fitness center), ate lunch at Hooters Scottsdale, then went to Talking Stick Resort for a poker session.

The closest thing to my usual $1/2 NL Hold em was a $2/3 spread limit game. The only really bad thing is that $1 rake is taken from the small blind before the cards are dealt. A chop, therefore, is unlikely since the small blind is forced to only get back $1. The table buy-in limit was $300. I bought in for $200. I am not sure of the rake, but I had read previously that it was on the high side.

I was hot at the beginning, but being new to the table, people were hesitant to get into hands with me. Too bad, as I might have won more than the $100 I quickly added to my stack. Soon I got into my first important hand with K-K on the button. Someone in early position raised to $12. There was one caller, a guy who out-chipped me and who seemed to be a solid played. I raised to $35. The initial raiser folded, and the solid played raised to $105! I was surprised. Just calling a $12 bet, then re-popping the subsequent $35 raise to $105? I went in the tank and was wondering if he was just putting me on a button steal and was, in his mind, re-stealing. However, his play was reminiscent of the ol' limp raise people do when they have pocket Aces. I guessed that he had Aces and took the $35 loss rather than risk losing $300. He didn't show. What do you think? btw -- he continued to play solid poker and cashed out with, I assume, a win of several hundred dollars.

I again had Kings and won a nice pot from a guy who had A-Q and thought he was ahead on a Queen-high flop. This same guy tried to muscle me out of a pot when I had two pair (Kings and Jacks).I was out of position and just checked the river. He thought I was weak and put out a big bet. When I called he auto-mucked. I had a chance to totally destroy him when I had A-K in middle position and raised to $10. He was on the button and went all in for $106. Everyone else folded and I was sitting on a stack of about $700. I said "I call" and he had this sick look on his face. Unfortunately, the board had all low cards and I flipped over Big Slick and said "I imagine that you are good." He turned over his pocket Deuces ...

One last hand: I had pocket 10's (stack of about $550) and raised to $10. Seeming solid played in late position (stack of about $200) raised to $25. I called. The flop was K-rag-10 rainbow. Yowsa! I checked and he bet $35. I raised to $80 and he shoved. I, of course, insta-called. He then quietly asked "do you have pocket Kings?" and I knew I was good. To rub it in, I quaded up on the river. Sometimes poker is EZ!

I ended up with a profit of over $450 for my 6+ hour session. I was pleased!

Today (Tuesday) I am planning to catch a White Sox and Rockies spring training game. The Arizona vacation continues to roll on. I am enjoying the 85 degree weather while thundering36 is putting up with five inches of snow in suburban Chicago. Ah well ...


Blogger Tony Bigcharles said...

so its also easier to win in phoenix than vegas? with all the places ive been im surprised i never considered phoenix more of an option. were there any VBJ machines, and did u see any bus? if i remember 15 yrs ago theres no bus

12:43 PM  
Blogger lightning36 said...

My table was definitely beatable at the beginning, but got tougher when players changed over. Hard to tell, however, with only one short session. Unless there was another part of the casino I did not see, it was relatively small with slots and the poker room. There appears to be some sort of trolley operating, but I have no idea about buses.

1:12 PM  
Blogger Memphis MOJO said...

and I knew I was good. To rub it in, I quaded up on the river. Sometimes poker is EZ!

Quads work for me! Good session.

6:00 PM  
Blogger angerisagift said...

any omaha??

6:55 PM  
Blogger cokeboy99 said...

Forget VBJ, I need info on Willy Wonka.....STAT!!

7:06 PM  
Blogger westfred said...

I played there at least 10 times while out on business. Several double rack cash outs. I feel the players overplay top pair type of hands which suits my patient style perfectly. Good promos during football season. And well attended tournaments although most are short stacked tournaments.

9:51 PM  
Blogger westfred said...

Casino is small. What you saw is what you get.

9:53 PM  
Blogger lightning36 said...

@angerisagift: Yes - Omaha and O8 stuff on their boards, but I didn't check to see if any games were going. It is a big room.

@cokeboy99: Yes, they had a Wonka machine, but it was a nickel machine. I played it for a bit and got no bonuses.

@westfred: If that was it for the casino, it would surely not be worth making much of a trip to play there. But the poker room was huge, busy and fun. I am going back there Wednesday and/or Thursday.

10:10 PM  
Blogger ~Coach said...

Pretty room, nice session!

11:13 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home