I am out in wonderful Las Vegas. So far I played two tournaments and have ran pretty card dead in both. I played one $1500 WSOP event at the RIO and got knocked out on level 4 (four hours into the event). I had QhQd and opened in early position for 4x the blinds. An older gentleman smooth called on the button. Flop came out 4d9d2s. I bet out three quarters of the pot and my opponent raised my all in. I started the hand with 11k in chips. My opponent had 9k in chips. I called he turned over AdKd turn Jh river As. I pick up 88 two hands later and lost my lat 2 k in chips. For get talking about the tournaments.
On to the cash games. I have been trying to stay away from where the pros have been playing and that has been working out nicely for me. However, I really do like the $5/$10 game in the Rio tournament room. The action is probably the best you can get in a $5/$10 game. Most of the players opt to take advantage of the button straddle ($20 dollars played on the button, and the action starts on the small bling). So the game plays very big. I buy in for $1500 in this game and top up whenever I get low in Chips. In terms of $2/$5 games I strongly recommend that you stay away from rooms like the Belagio, Wynn, Caesars or Venetian. Although I have a major edge playing in any $2/$5 game i find that a lot of grinders play in these games. If you are looking to play in a $2/$5 game I suggest that you find a room that non grinders tend to go to. A few suggestions are the following. The Palms, MGM Grand, Small Poker room at the Rio, and the Hard Rock.
I played at the Hard Rock on Trash Talk Tuesdays and the action was just sick. Min buy-in was 300 and max was 3k. There was a mandatory 10 dollars Hard Rock straddle and the 2-7 game was always on. The game played like a $5/$10 game and the skill level was quite low. A lot of gambling and drinking was going on. If you are in Vegas on a Tuesday then you must pay a visit to the Hard Rock. Oh and I ran into Alan Boston playing while I was there. Boy did i want to play on his table.
If you need any advice about playing the WSOP or playing cash games in Vegas give me a shout. And yes I do plan on playing satellites for the main event (The best valued poker tournament in the world).
So I just got back from a Vegas trip with a bunch of the boys. The trip was great! While in Vegas I stayed at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino. The first few nights we stayed in a room that was a non pool side view. This wasn’t our best choice as the hotel was undergoing construction. That meant an early wake up by the construction crew. After we complained we got moved to a poolside view. What a difference that made.
The poker lounge is located right off the main casino floor and right down the hall from the parking garage. There is a nice restaurant called pink tacos beside the room as well as a Starbucks located next door. The floor at the Hard Rock are excellent. All staff at the Hard Rock Poker Room seems to be a tight bunch. They are a very friendly bunch.
The games that were spread at the Hard Rock Poker Lounge were $1/$2 nl and $2/$5 nl. The $1-$2 had a buyin of $100/$300 and the $2 -$5 had a buyin of $200/$2,000. What I did notice is that they could only spread a $2-$5 game from Thursday to Sunday in the afternoons to early morning, which is ok because that’s when the Hard Rock gets the majority of traffic. The $1 – $2 spread 1 table in the early mornings and they would have a floor playing as a prop player to get the game going. I don’t even play $1 – $2 so i didn’t really play at the Hard Rock until the weekend before I went out to the club.
While playing at the Hard Rock Poker Lounge I played $2 – $5 with Jamie Gold. The game was fantastic as everyone had well over 3k in front of them at one point. No clue why Jamie Gold was playing such low limits. Most of the time i played $2 – $5 the game was insanely soft. I would buyin for the 2k max and most players had 300 to 500 in front of them.
I did have one major complaint with the poker room. The floor did not really have a solid foundation when it came to a few specific rulings. It seemed to me that the floor basically took the majority of the player’s word when making a ruling. Maybe it was just the one floor I dealt with but that was my general consensus. Most smaller poker rooms generally make “friendly” rullings to appease the majority of the players (to get them to come back). Stuff like this wouldn’t ever happen if you go to 1 of the 4 top poker rooms in Vegas (Bellagio, Venetian, Caesars, and Wynn).
That being said, the staff at the Hard Rock Lounge were extremely nice to the players. If you had the players they would spread whatever game and whatever limit you wanted. The staff at the poker lounge even walked us in to the Hard Rock club (Body English) on Halloween. It was pretty much the casinos busiest time of the year.
If the Hard Rock ran a $2 – $5 game around the clock every day i pretty much wouldn’t have left the casino. I did extremely well while playing there and the staff made my stay at the Hard Rock a great overall experience.
Oh and I bumped into Daniel Negraunu while playing at the Hard Rock. Apparently he was giving lessons to a contest winner. Here is a pic of me and Negraunu. I played a lot this summer at the WSOP and didn’t stop one pro for a picture. Heck I even played with Phil Galfond and Jamie gold. I guess I just consider these guys to be regular people.