Poker Blog

Friday, June 10, 2005

Back in V-Vegas

Finished third in the weekly Friday night poker tournament at my house. We had 16 players and although I didn’t win, I managed to keep my streak of cashing alive.

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Sit-N-Go's at the Aladdin

Played in a couple Sit-N-Go tournaments at the Aladdin. $55 buy-in and I took first in one for $360 and 6th in another one. –EV was playing there as well and I got to hang out with him for a while.

Saturday, June 04, 2005

World Series of Poker

Most of the bloggers headed over to the AlCantHang after party at the La Salsa Cantina. They have 345,875 different types of tequila.

I wanted to head over to that, but my friend Tommy from V-Vegas was playing in the WSOP Event #3 Pot Limit Hold 'Em so I thought I'd go sweat him for a while. Tommy qualified online through Full Tilt Poker. Since he couldn't get in to yesterdays sold out event, he decided to play today.

The Rio was jamming and ramming, poker chips flying. I saw a lot of pro's; Daniel Negreanu, Eric Lindgren, Eric Siedel, Howard Lederer, John Juwanda, Chris Fergurson, Phil Ivey, Phil Gordon, Cyndy Violette, Clonie Gowen, Evelyn Ng, Annie Duke, Jennifer Harman, Phil Hellmuth, Ted Forrest, and Marcel Luske. Saw a couple celebrities too like James Woods, Tobey McGuire, and Jennifer Tilley.

If you want to get a feel for what it's like on the floor, Dr. Pauly is now reporting for Poker Player Newspaper from the WSOP, check out his late night final table reports, and his contributions to Las VegasVegas.

In case you haven't heard, check out Phil Gordons podcast from the floor of the WSOP. Phil interviews players at his table and other pro's during breaks, and talks about his strategy on specific hands throughout the tournament.

*Photos courtesy of

WPBT Aladdin Classic

The World Poker Blogger Tour (WPBT) Aladdin Classic was epic.

71 bloggers took over the Aladdin poker room, and they treated us like celebrities.

We had an Emcee, photographers, fans, tourist on-lookers, cheering and screaming every time someone dropped the hammer. I had the honor of having Otis and AlCantHang at my table. I won a couple big hands and became the chip leader at the table. I played aggressively and bullied everyone to steal their chips.

I knocked out AlCantHang and won his bounty….a fine SoCo ballcap. Sucked out on Otis to eliminate him. The PokerProf, BG, and Poker Nerd joined my table. BG had about the same amount of chips as me and we both stayed out of each others way.

Got moved to another table with Allan, and Bill Rini, who was down to just a couple of chips. Eventually made the final table of 10. We got down to 6 and I was second in chips. CJ who was about to be blinded away went all in for his last couple of hundred. I looked down to find AJo and raised to T$6000. Matt, the chip leader smooth called.

Flop is A x x and I push all-in, about T$24,000. I figure if Matts got a pocket pair I now have him beat, if he has an Ace it must be with a weak kicker because he didn’t raise pre-flop. Well he turned over AQo and took the rest of my chips. CJ made a flush on the hand and stayed alive to begin his rush to the final 2. As you probably know by now, Bill Rini won. I finished 6th for $238.

Friday, June 03, 2005

Poker Ambassador

Played craps and won back my $500 I blew on poker lessons in the WSOP satellites yesterday. I played in the 11:00 AM tournament at Aladdin. Didn’t win a single hand and was knocked out early. I did manage to win $200 in the NL ring game there.

Tommy, a friend of mine from V-Vegas won a seat into a $1500 WSOP event on Full Tilt Poker and chose to play in the Pot Limit Hold ‘Em Event #3 on Sunday since today’s event is full. We decided to meet at the new Wynn casino. Tommy was playing in a $2-$5 NL ring game and I sweated him for a while.

Daniel Negreanu is the Poker Ambassador for the Wynn casino and was playing his heads up match with Barry Greenstein for $500,000. Barry had a 2-1 chip lead when I went to play craps for a couple hours, when I returned Daniel had made a comeback and had ¾ of the chips in front of him. They each had double high stacks of $1000 and $5000 chips and smaller stacks of $25,000 chips. I’m watching them sling these things around and scoop these monster pots….I’m thinking, they’re betting my house. They were playing with $1000 chips like I would play with $1 chips. It was amazing.

I invited Daniel to our blogger tournament tomorrow…..hope he can stop by.

H.O.R.S.E. at the MGM Grand

Hit the MGM Grand around 10:00 PM to play HORSE with the bloggers. I got a seat at a $1-$2 No Limit table while I waited. Spotted Dr. Pauly and Derrick on the rail so I introduced myself. Figured out that the HORSE game was already running in the posh, private room upstairs. I popped in and recognized several of the players from their blog profiles.

Felicia Lee was great, like the queen of diamonds at the poker table. She set up this HORSE game with the MGM Grand poker room manager. She could talk an Eskimo into buying an ice maker, and she convinced a major casino on the strip to turn over a couple of their tables for our game. Once they did, word spread around the poker room that the MGM was running a mixed game and they developed a waiting list. They opened a second table on the main floor and when my name came up on the list I jumped in.

Let me just say…..this table was crazy. We had blind bets, even blinder raises and calls, straddles, rocks, razz and pineapple. It was like sitting around your dining room table playing cards with professional dealers in this beautiful casino card room. They were bending over backwards to accommodate us.

Having never played razz, or Omaha 8 hi/low or pineapple for money before… was quite an experience. My best hand came in Hold’ Em when SpacemanTN did a live straddle and I looked down to find the hammer…I raised, he called blind. The flop came 7 10 2. I bet and he called blind. Turn was a blank and river was a 2 to complete my hammer house. I bet and he again, called blind. He turned over pocket Queens, but the celebration was short lived when I turned over the hammer. Arrgggg, blogger nirvana.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Poker Lessons

I made my way over to the Rio and walked forever to get to the convention area where they were running the WSOP.

Okay, this place is big; I mean it’s like Africa big. Poker tables lined up in rows like the headstones at Arlington National Cemetery for as far as you can see. They have taken the convention room and turned it into poker headquarters for the next month and a half.

The tables are all numbered and they are kinda sectioned off, they have a section for cash games, a section for satellites, of course most of the room is for the main tournament they will run everyday. Then there is a section for the ESPN set for each final table.

They run 2 Super Satellites everyday which are MTT for seats in the Main Event. Buy in for the Super Satellites is $225, or you could play a $55 Sit-N-Go where 2 players win a buy-in to the Super Satellite.

They have other Sit-N-Go’s that they run around the clock….(table space permitting).
The cheapest is a $65 which nets a $650 payout minus the WSOP juice. They don’t pay you in cash though, you win special tournament chips that can be used for a buy-in to any of the WSOP events. Other Sit-N-Go’s include $125 for $1250, $175 for $1750, $225 for $2250, and $500 for $5000. Win two of those and you can buy in to the Main Event.

Many people play the Sit-N-Go’s and sell the winning chips to people standing in line to buy in to WSOP events. There’s even a capitalistic market influence where folks will buy the $500 chips for less then cash value then sell them for full value. You gotta love this country.

I signed up for a $175 Sit-N-Go so I could win at least $1500 for a WSOP event buy-in. Finished eighth, okay so back in line and into another one. Finished third this time, there was talk of a chop but we didn’t have unanimous agreement, I could of at least had one chip, oh well. Back in line and into another one, this time I finished second and should of won it. Folded K-2 off suit three handed on a board that came K92K6. The other two ended going all in……arrggggh the pain.

Well, at least I got a $500 poker lesson.

V-Vegas Touchdown

My American West flight landed in Vegas at 10:30 AM direct from Washington DC. No checked luggage so I grabbed a cab and made my way to Harrah’s. Although I have stayed at Harrah’s in other states, I’ve never stayed at the one on the strip.

I received a WSOP mailer a couple weeks ago for 3 free nights at either Harrah’s or the Rio during the WSOP. Rio was full for this weekend so that’s how I ended up at Harrah’s. The line for check-in was long, but I’m a VIP Platinum card holder which gives me access to the VIP registration desk. Got my strip view room in minutes and dumped my bags. Room was standard but with a great view of Caesars Palace and The Bellagio.

Since I planned to meet up with the other bloggers tonight at MGM Grand, I figured I’d have most of the day to check out the WSOP and play some satellites to win a seat in the NL Hold ‘Em event. Caught the shuttle to the Rio and made my grand entrance.

V-Vegas is Born

Pack up the bankroll, kiss the family goodbye, I'm on a flight to Vegas this morning to make my mark on the 2005 WSOP.

I'm also gonna hang with other bloggers and play in the WPBT Classic hosted at the Aladdin Casino.

Goodbye Virginia....V-Vegas is born!