Friday, December 15, 2006

Vegas Report Part III

I slept in till about noon for the second day in a row. Quickly I raced to Caesar’s for the blogger tourney. Grabbed some lunch at the food court at Caesar’s and registered just before 1:30PM. Caesars really screwed up the seat selection IMO. It basically was tied directly to the order you registered. Anyone else notice that the people you were in line to register with all ended up at your starting table? I was inline with Spaceman, Easycure, FallStaff, and Ryan, and poof they are all at my starting table. I did luck out and get a dead stack directly to my left.

The cards were in the air sometime around 2PM. The table seemed to be pretty tight in general (which should be expected early in a deep stack tourney). I picked up the hammer on the third hand on the button and stole the deadstack and FallStaff’s blinds with it. After exposing my cards, FallStaff was pissed, because I had pushed him off the hammer as well. It folded to my button quite a bit, and I always seemed to have a little somthin-somthin so I stole the deadstack and Fallstaff blinds about 5 times during the first two levels. The only times I did not was when Spaceman beat me to it. Spaceman was pretty aggressive, and I was usually just smooth calling him preflop, trying to hit something big and stack him. I had it pretty well set up for this, but the situation never presented itself. One time it folded to me on the button, and I had some real raggedy cards, so I went ahead and gave FallStaff a walk in his BB for the first time. The poor guy had AA that time. I’m a freaking genius. In general, I was floating around the 5-7k in chips for most of the first two hours. I was gobbling up lots of small pots, but never taking down anything very big. One interesting hand went down between Ryan and Spaceman. I am pretty sure it was raised preflop, and after a J high uncoordinated flop, Ryan led out from out of position. Spaceman reraised to 2.5k. Ryan tanked for a bit and then reraised to 5k total. Spaceman jammed for a little more and Ryan called. I was expecting to see some monster hands. Spaceman flipped up QQ for an overpair (not bad), and Ryan flipped up 22 for an under pair (huh?). Ryan did not last much longer after that.

Just before the opening table broke, I got my first real hand (QQ), on the button, and did the typical steal of FallStaff’s blinds like I had done nearly everytime. This time he popped me back. There is no way I could let my hand go, so I jammed saying “well it’s been nice playing with everyone”. FallStaff asked if I had AA which made me feel a little better. Eventually he called with QQ as well. I got to 4 to my flush by the turn, but bricked the river (that would have been a sick beat for FallStaff), so we chopped. After that they broke our table and we were down to the last four and about 35 remaining. At the new table, I had Spaceman and FallStaff still, as well as Mattazuma, Drizz, and Miami Don. Drizz was getting short and pushing in a lot (it’s his patented move). He pushed in on my BB, and I looked down to find QQ again. I call, and drizz flips up 76o. Looks like I will finally get that big pot I need. A 7 flops, and Drizz turns a straight, but the river puts a straight on the board for the chop. QQ twice all-in preflop, and two chops for those scoring at home. Eventually I was down to 3k in chips on the button, and Mattazuma made it 3k to go. I found AQs, and put my last chips in the middle.

This is where I totally screwed up, and I have done this before as well. You simply can’t disrespect the hammer in a blogger tourney. I made the mistake of saying “show me the hammer” to Mattazuma before he turned his cards up. Sure enough he showed it to me, and cracked my AQs when two sevens hit the board. I should have said “show me AJ”. I would have been a much bigger favorite against that. So I was eliminated around 30th. I played about as good as I can, but just could not get a big pot. It’s tough against the skill level of the bloggers, so I am actually pretty happy about my play even though no final table. There were plenty of all-stars eliminated before me. There was some talk about heading over to the Venetian for a MTT, but I chickened out and did a quick power nap back at the hotel.

Around 8PM, I headed over to the IP for a night of gambling and debauchery. I hung out at the Geisha bar for a while with Spaceman and others, and there was a conversation about what a douche Jamie Gold was. I guess I am the only blogger who thinks he is a decent player. Sure he is an arrogant luckbox, but he did lead the biggest tournament ever for 6 straight days. It may have been luck, but give the boy the credit he is due. It was arguably the most impressive performance ever in a tournament. I also loved how he got the call on the last hand, by questioning the manhood of a player who was better than him, and should have just shaken off the mindfuck Jamie was laying down. It’s also so much fun when you’re playing live to keep saying “I have a hand, you should fold” when others are in the tank. I did it at my last home game to great effect.

At 9:30PM, I headed up for the Poker Tec party. It was pretty cool to get all the bloggers together, in a big room with free drinks instead of the $5 Corona’s and pimps/hos at the Geisha bar. I think we raged it up till they kicked us out at midnight. We were playing S&Gs for real money at the Poker Tec table and it was pissing them off, because they don’t have a license yet, but fun none-the-less. Love Elf took one S&G down, and got handed $90 before she even realized we were playing for money, lol.

At midnight, I headed to the IP poker room where they were opening a ½ nl table for the bloggers. We had Smokkee, CC, Lucko, SuperStoner, pro Richard Brodie, Sox Lover, and a couple other bloggers I did not know. Brodie is a total dickwad IMO. Rather than just play solid poker, he was angle shooting, and trying to play mindgames with us. Dude save that shit for the higher levels. After Smokkee smacked him around for a while he did the right thing and got up and left. That’s when what has been described as the “biggest nads contest” started going down. The problem was that you had Smokkee, Lucko and SuperStoner playing at stakes that were way beneath them and meaningless. It was live stradled every hand effectively making it a 2/4 NL game, and these guys were slinging massive amounts of chips around nearly everyhand. I tried to adjust to this, but the deck was not being kind to me. After about 2 hours, I was stuck about $40. I won a decent pot against an unknown blogger and called it quits having crawled back to even. I am now convinced you can get an accurate reading on the size of a man’s balls just by what they do with tiny clay disks on a green felt table. Who would have thunk that?

As 3 in the AM neared, I was looking forward to the advertised Craps session at Casino Royal led by the infamous Spaceman. He was hanging at the Pia Gow tables, so I asked when we were heading over there. He decided to call it a night. I decided to make my third solo trip to Casino Royal for Craps. I played for about ½ hour, and dropped about $20, before heading back to the IP.

It was now pushing 4 AM, and I had a huge concert to go to Sunday Night in LA. I really was not planning on staying up this late, but shit happens in Vegas. Back at the IP I ran into Speaker, and found out that Bobby BlackJack was at one of the BJ tables. You just can’t ever pass up an opportunity to play with the king when it’s there, so I sat down at third base, while Speaker bought in at first. Bobby was holding down second base (midfield?). The stakes were $15. I prefer $1, but like your going to find that on the strip on a Saturday night. I played a few hands, and dropped about $75, then rallied back to even. Bobby was there for me when I got stuck with tough decisions like do you double down with a soft 15 and the dealer showing a 3. Now I know that answer is YES. I wish I could have just kept going, but I needed some rest so I would not be completely dead on Sunday and called it quits around 4:30AM. I would wake-up at 10:30, check out and drive home the following morning to get back to LA for night 2 of the “KROQ Almost Acoustic X-Mas” concert starting at 5PM. I will do one last recap later, but I have to say it was one of the best times I have ever had in Vegas and that is saying quite a bit, because I have had many incredible times there in the past. I don’t know how I will ever be able to miss out on one of these gatherings. Bloggers rawk!


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