Monday, December 10, 2007

Vegas Trip Report - He shoots he SCORES !

Jeff, Christopher, and I just got back from three-day weekend in Vegas. I can't believe it has been almost 2 1/2 years since Jeff and I took a dedicated poker trip to Vegas. This time I remembered to take my hair gel !

Jeff and I took an earlier flight getting into Vegas about 10am. We were able to check in to the room at the Monte Carlo right off the bat. The girl at the front desk saw that we were from Texas and asked if we were there for the Rodeo. If you don't know Jeff,
just picture Ed Norton in American History X, you know ... just your average run of the mill skinhead. And me ? .... I was wearing a sweatshirt with a hoodie that my girlfriend bought me. It has a hip-hoppish logo on the front and I was looking a little gansta myself. So we said, "Yeahhhh Boooyyyyy ! ... Hell's yeah we are here for the Rodeo !" Rodeo AND the Mayweather-Hatton fight in town ?!?! ... damn there is bound to be some great poker action.

We headed to Caesars Palace to check out the room. I sat down at a 2/5 NL table, Jeff took a seat at the 1/2 NL. It was early in the day but there were at least two at the table that were pretty much clueless. One got into a big pot for about $600 and was suprised when his top pair, top kicker was no good. I got lucky to turn quad Queens on that guy about an hour later and he paid me off a little on the turn, but he layed down on the river. The room has high hand prizes, quad queens had just reset, so I only got $100 from the house. But hey, free money and QUADS !

Christopher then met up with us and we headed to lunch. We decided to play in the 3pm Caesars tourney, but when we got back they were sold out.

We decided to walk back towards the hotel and hit the poker room at Planet Hollywood. Along the way we passed
Bill's Gamblin' Hall and Saloon. Shooooooot pardner .... since we was in town for the rodeo, hell's yeah we's gonna go into that there dang Saaaaalooooonnnn. Wheeeeee Doooogggiee !

We shot some craps, I quickly lost $100, pulled out another $100, and got back to even after I had a good roll of about 15 mins. We then played some single deck blackjack. Jeff and I camped on one table and Christopher went to one next to us. The dealer at our table was easy on the eyes. On single deck BJ, they deal the cards down to you. Jeff and I kept getting in to trouble because we were looking at our cards "poker style", and you can only use one hand ! ... I had to sit on my hand to keep from doing it, but still couldn't get out of the habit. I ran my $200 from the craps table up to about $400, but then cashed out for $300. I got a call from Adam and we made plans to meet up for dinner at the Venetian.

Adam used to work for IBM, but quit and has been living in Vegas for about half a year now. He says he's doing alright and making enough money to live on. He also works out a ton at the gym.

Jeff, Christopher, and I left the saloon and headed to Venetian to play until it was time for dinner. I took my seat at the 2/5 NL table and 3 seconds later I get a slap on the back from
Scott McMillan ! Fly all the way across the country just to see some dead beat Austin players :-) He asked if I was in town for the blogger tournament. What ?!?! ... nobody reads my blog except for my mom, of course I didn't get an invite. We exchanged numbers and I said I might call him tomorrow for the tourney.

Played the 2/5 for about two hours, there was a maniac at the table. Didn't get enough hands to mix it up with him, but did make a monster call with a pair of 10's on his obvious river bluff. That was a $500 pot, and I could see him licking his lips. He wasn't a true maniac, but one of those "I'm going to build an image and make you make horrible calls for big pots later on." I wish I could have stayed but just then Adam showed up with his friend Jeremy.

We had dinner and talked a bit. Adam seems like he's doing alright. Now I'm not gay or anything --- I do have a Man Car, you know --- but Adam's chest is ripppppped. He's got like an 8 pack or something. You'd never know from that skinny exterior. Says he works out about 2-3 hours a day and eats a TON from burning all those calories. They were headed to see Bite at the Stratosphere so we parted ways and were off back to the Monte Carlo.

It was early, about 10:30pm. I had been up for about 19 hours and it was taking a toll. I decided to hit the hay and take a shot at the MGM game in the morning.

I woke up about 6am, took a shower, and went straight to the MGM. Took a seat at table 11 seat number 10 in the 2/5 NL game and proceeded to play for the next 19 hours. I love it when I have nothing to do except concentrate on the game and I don't have to worry about being anywhere. I do my best in long sessions.

MGM was hosting the Mayweather-Hatton fight, so there were a TON of drunk Brits just before the game. This was the BEST table I had ever sat at. There were about 3 people that had their wits about them, the rest ... clueless. We even had one monster whale that had won $400,000 at roulette. His mate talked about how he also lost $150K the next day. Said it was his job to try to keep him out of trouble, so dropping $500 at a pop on our table was his way of doing it. Thank you for that ! ..... he lost his first two buyins immediately while playing the first two hands he was dealt. On his third hand he actually folded and said, "We'll that's a winner, my third hand EVER at playing poker and I have some chips left .. that's a winner !"

Could not ask for a better table. And on top of that, all the Brits were getting $2 for every British pound, so our money was like funny money to them !

No significant good hands, just being patient and waited for others to make the mistakes when I could take down the monster pots.

About an hour before the fight starts, I look up behind me and there is
Phil Gordon on his cell phone ! I waited for him to get off and then stood up and introduced myself. I told him he had sent me an autographed picture last year and it would be great to have a real one next to it. He was very nice and then sat down in seat 9 at our table and played with us for about 20 mins. I'd like to say I beat him real good, but the only thing I did was make a position raise and he folded along with everybody else at the table. so I guess you could say I beat him !

Check out the photos. Pay special attention to the size of my stack compared to his !

I bought into that game for $500 and cashed out $1500. It was Saturday night about midnight, my goal was to make money this trip so I went to bed to hit the game in the morning.

Woke up the next morning and got right back on the same table same seat and went right back into it. There was a guy to my right that was still at the table. He got there Friday around 8pm and he was still there when I left the game at 5:20pm on Sunday. 45 hours straight poker ... man that is one long session. I bought in for $500, built it up to $1030 and then lost it all in about an hour. Bought back in for $500 and was able to get it up to $940 just before we had to leave, so only $60 down for the day.

Good times, fun trip. Wish we would have went to shoot machine guns. Adam offered to take us, but I forgot about it the next day. We'll have to do that next time.

I like poker.