Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Vegas 2010 Days 7 thru 10

Vegas 2010 Days 7 thru 10 - Friday Dec 17th thru Monday Dec 20th

NOTE: You should check out my AudioBoo's here: http://audioboo.fm/RobNava. They're basically short (under 5 minute) audio blogs. No reading required. :-)

I'm sitting here staring at this screen. I'm not wanting to write this.

Nothing bad happened or anything like that. I just don't want to even attempt to condense 4 days worth of Vegas antics into a single blog post. The single day blogs were taking about 2 hours each to write, edit and post. What's 4 days worth of crap gonna take? 8 hours? Ugh. Like 2 people are gonna read this anyway, right?

Alright, well, here I go...

Day 7

Claire came into town. I wanted to make sure I was well rested when she arrived because I figured she'd want to hit the ground running. So, I just slept and rested all day. Besides, the previous day I had that long-ass 14 hour session. Claire got in right around 11pm. We had dinner before getting started on the town, so I technically didn't start any poker sessions on Day 7.

Day 8

Session 11: The Mirage $1/$2 NL Hold 'Em
In: $300 Out: $414 Time: 2 hours 0 minutes

Back to The Mirage. I don't remember shit about this session. Sorry. My stats say that I started at 1:30am and played for 2 hours. I made $114. Claire was super tired by 3:30am (5:30am back in Texas) so we headed back to MGM for the night.

After we woke up, we had lunch and made plans to see a show.

We bought Mystere tickets and needed to decide where to play until it was time to head to the show. The blue ticket promotion at The Mirage really works. As you play at The Mirage, you earn these blue tickets that can be deposited in 'the barrel' for a daily drawing for $599 at 6pm. We had some tickets from the previous night, so we went to The Mirage to play and see if maybe we could get lucky in the drawing. I had actually saved up over 90 tickets from my previous sessions too. But, alas, we did not win.

Session 12: The Mirage $1/$2 NL Hold 'Em
In: $300 Out: $671 Time: 5 hours 0 minutes

I was just running and playing really well during this session. I made a bunch of money when I check-raised this dude on the turn with As Ks on the turn with a straight and spade flush possible. I had the nuts. I check-called the flop with the nut flush draw for $15. I checked the flush when I made it on the turn. The guy lead out for $15. I raised to $55. He got all uppity and re-raised All-In for about $175. I, of course, insta-called. He asked if I had a flush, and before he could even flip his cards over, I showed him the nuts. He mucked instantly and said that he had a straight. Cha-Ching!

Claire ran kinda rough this session, and she was really upset by the end. She also had too many Coronas. I had to cut her off. She sobered up towards the end and wasn't really playing badly. She was just not winning. I made more than she lost, but she was still pretty upset as we left the game to head to Treasure Island for the show.

Mystere was OK. It wasn't great. Maybe I'm jaded, but I just wasn't that impressed. Claire had to pee twice during the show. It was kind of embarrassing as we were in the middle of a row, and she wouldn't wait until there was a break in the action. It was partly my fault. I made a huge mistake and tried to cheer her up by buying her a beer before the show started. It made her happy, but also induced intense drowsiness and filled her bladder. She missed the last 20 minutes of the show after she took her 2nd pee break, and I advised her not to come back. I think she missed more than that as her eyes were closed a lot of the time she was in the theater. The mood was not good.

Claire was nearly passed out standing up. She leaned on me the entire way through the casino as we headed out to the Strip to catch the Deuce. She wanted to play more. I strongly advised against it as she was barely conscious, and I didn't think she was in any condition to play poker. She was 1/2 drunk and 1/2 insanely tired as she had woken up early to play poker. (She got in a session at MGM before I got up that day.)

I agreed to get her some pizza at NYNY, and we boarded the Deuce. She passed out almost immediately on the bus. I woke her up as we got to the NYNY/MGM stop. She somehow made it down the stairs of the double decker bus and onto the sidewalk. I almost just went to MGM, but she seemed alert enough and again asked me to get her some food. So, we went to NYNY for some pizza.

The NYNY casino invigorated her and after her snack, she convinced me that she could still play. I kinda felt bad because she was in town for such a short period of time, so I reluctantly agreed. We would head to her favorite poker room of all time: Excalibur.

Session 13: Excalibur $1/$2 NL Hold 'Em
In: $300 Out: $443 Time: 2 hours 30 minutes

Claire knows everyone at the Excalibur poker room. And they know her. We've been coming here for about 6 years now. This poker room feels like home. It's too bad that it's such a sad poker room nowadays. When we first started playing here, they had 30+ tables and lots of action. Now they barely have 2-3 tables running at any one time. Luckily, the had a couple of 1/2 games going so we could sit at different tables.

I took the dreary table. The one with all frowns and no action. I didn't want to sit there, but I knew Claire would hate it more than I would.

Apparently I won some hands because my stats say I made $143. I don't remember any of them. I think Claire made a little bit on her table too.

I kept watching her. She was fine for a little bit, then I could tell she was just absolutely exhausted. She finally agreed to call it a day.

Day 9

Session 14: Planet Hollywood $1/$2 NL Hold 'Em
In: $1000 Out: $1080 Time: 5 hours 0 minutes

Look at that buy-in amount again. I've never been in for so much in one session in my life. Now look at the cash-out. Yep, I somehow made it back and still turned a profit.

Claire sat at my table. We both started running really badly. Meanwhile, people were sitting down on the table and hitting straight flushes and quads, and getting paid a bonus for them too. It was pretty annoying.

I was playing pretty well, but my hands were just getting killed by draws. Or I'd take a chance calling a raise with bad hands with potential (like 34 suited) and hitting pretty big (A34 flop) and losing to someone holding AA. Sure that was a risky call, and AA had me killed the whole way, but that is just annoying. Where's the AK or AQ?

Anyway, big hand or small hand. I just kept losing. I called a guy down with AT when an Ace flopped. He had A4 and hit his 4 on the river. Kept losing and adding on. Losing and adding on. I knew I was gonna catch one of these dudes sometime. I just kept waiting.

I'm already in for $1000 at this point. I have about $350. I look down at 33. Guy to my left, a really loose-aggressive player, makes it $15 to go. An older really loose player calls, and I decide to try to hit my set. Maybe I can double up. I call. The flop comes 664. Nope. I check. Guy to my left bets $60. The older loose player calls. I fold. The turn is an 8. Guy to my left checks. The older loose player checks. The river is an A. The guy to my left checks. The older player bets $80. The guy to my left calls. I see the guy to my left has AJ offsuit. The older guy flips over AQ offsuit. The guy to my left mucks in disgust.

Two things I confirmed from that. 1) The guy to my left continuation bets… a lot. 2) The old guy called $60 on a flop with absolutely nothing at all but AQ high. I also figured the guy to my left was tilting pretty badly after that exchange.

So the very next hand, I get 66 in the big blind. Guy to my left straddles for $4. Call. Call. Call. I call. The guy to my left makes it $25. He gets a couple of calls, and I decide to try to hit my set one more time. Flop is 993. Shit. Man, I needed that flop LAST hand. Fuck. Whatever. I check. The guy to my left makes it $60. Hmmm. I start to think that this guy is just continuation betting again. He's on tilt, and he's acting very similarly to the previous hand. Everyone folds around back to me. I decide to test him. But instead of calling, I decide to check-raise to $160. He might put me on a 9 or pocket 3's. Or more than likely, he just has two unpaired cards that didn't hit the board. I'm thinking he can fold. I like my play for about 2 seconds… until he almost insta-shoves All-In.

Wow. I didn't expect that. I've got $185 in. Plus a few other pre-flop calls in there and the other guy's $185. He's got me covered. I count out $174 behind. Wow. What do I do? The room goes silent. I get tunnel-vision. Everything seems like it's paused, but at the same time I feel everyone's eyes focused squarely on me. My brain starts racing. Does he have a huge pocket pair? Is he bluffing? Do I go with my read? I'd hate to be down $1000 in one session. How am I ever going to climb out of this hole if I fold here. I'll be down to $174. Will he show me a bluff? Can I still hit a 6 to win? That's only 10%. Is he breathing heavily. What does that mean? Does he want a call? Is he nervous because he has the nuts? What do I do?

I call.

The whole table is fixated on my two cards. The guy to my left frowns and mutters, "Nice call." So I was right? I'm winning? I flip over 66. He frowns. The table is in awe. I pray that he doesn't hit whatever the hell cards he needs to hit to beat me. Turn and river are baby cards. He mucks. Holy shit! I win a nearly $800 pot with 66 on a board of 993. I'm back, baby!

Claire had been absent (restroom) for the beginning of that huge hand. She arrived after the guy was already All-In, but she saw me make the call. I'm sure she was really worried when she saw me flip over 66!

I'm showered with praise from the table… most of all from the guy to my left. He's a solid player himself. I say aloud, "You know, there are definitely easier tables than this one." Everyone agrees. This table is filled with 1/2 sharks. I request a table change about a revolution later.

Someone at another table had also requested a table change. So we literally swap table and seat. I tell him, "Good luck. This table is a rough."

I sit down at my new table with $705 since I'd lost about $50-60 from the time I won that big pot. I proceed to lose, lose, lose at this new table. I find I'm down to almost $500 at one point. I bring it back up to about $575 when I play my next big hand.

I have KT offsuit on the button. The guy under the gun makes it $10 to go. A couple of callers ahead of me, and I call. The blinds call as well. The flop comes QJ9 rainbow. Yep. I flopped the nuts. That's always nice, but you always wonder how you can extract the most from that kind of flop. I soon realize that I won't be having that problem. Big Blind bets $6. UTG (the initial raiser) makes it $18. Hmm. OK. I like this. I decide to just smooth call to see what BB does. He calls.

The turn is a rainbow 4. This is so perfect! QJ94 rainbow, and I'm sitting there with KT on the button with bets and raises ahead of me. Big Blind leads out AGAIN for $25. UTG raises to $125. Hmmm. I like this, but now I'm a bit worried I'm chopping this pot. That would suck. I see that Big Blind only has about $80 more behind his $25. UTG started with about $375. So he's got $200+ still left after his $125 bet. I have them both covered. I decide that BB can't fold. So if I raise, he's not going anywhere. There's too much in the pot. UTG. He can still fold if I push. However, I think that if I call this bet, he won't put any more money in… especially if he has a set and is on a draw to a boat and misses. I have to make him put in his money now… if he's going to.

I push All-In. The Big Blind winces, but reluctantly calls. I like that. No chopping with him. At least not at this point. The UTG guy doesn't think for very long, and he calls as well. I'm just hoping UTG doesn't have KT too. Or even worse, I hope he doesn't have a set and the river pairs the board. The river is a harmless 8. Big Blind is excited! He flips over T 7. "Straight!" he exclaims. The rest of the table has already noticed that my KT was already flipped up. Several people chime in to burst his bubble. "He's got a straight to the King," they inform him. :-)

The UTG guy hasn't flipped over but nods in acceptance of a loss. The dealer has to ask him, "Sir, are you mucking?" His hand remains capped by his chips. C'mon, dude. Muck. Muck. He continues to nod. "Sir? Are you mucking?" the dealer asks again. Finally, the guy acknowledges the dealer and turns in his cards. Fucking. Awesome. I start stacking up my chips and look over to Claire. Uh-oh.

I see the All-In card next to her, and all her money is in the pot. The pot itself is huge. I'm trying to stack my chips to get them out of the way while squirming about trying to get a better view of what the hell is going on at her table. Jeez. I just won like a $900 pot. Is she about lose $450?

I finally am able to get to her table, and I see the dude who had swapped seats with me is the one she's up against. He flips over his hand and mucks. The dealer starts pushing the pot Claire's way. Whew! We both won a huge pot at the same time! Claire's now up over $100. I check back on my chipstack. I have $1080. I'm fucking done. $80 up. I'll take it.

We cash out, and I later found out that Claire had the nut flush on the river. The guy had a straight. She was never in danger after all. Still, it was scary.

Session 15: MGM $1/$2 NL Hold 'Em
In: $500 Out: $503 Time: 5 hours 45 minutes

This was the last session before Claire had to leave for the airport. One hour of that time I spent seeing Claire off. I didn't want to take my chips off the table because I was down at that time and didn't want to log a losing session. So, I just left my chips on the table and came back later. Nothing interesting happened. I just made $3 by the end of it. Oh, well. A win's a win.

Day 10

This is the first day without Claire.

Session 16: Excalibur $1/$2 NL Hold 'Em
In: $400 Out: $422 Time: 2 hours 30 minutes

I made enough for lunch, and I was hungry. So I left.

Session 17: The Palms $1/$3 NL Hold 'Em
In: $300 Out: $350 Time: 5 hours 45 minutes

I was waiting for Tron: Legacy in IMAX 3D to start letting people in at The Palms casino. I figured I'd kill some time at the poker room. I made enough for the movie and the taxi rides. Nothing really notable.

Session 18: Excalibur $1/$2 NL Hold 'Em
In: $300 Out: $359 Time: 2 hours 15 minutes

I almost had a losing session due to the game almost breaking up. I got lucky on an All-In against a small stack and ended up +$59, and then the game broke. I'll take it. Went to bed.

My time here in Vegas is starting to draw to a close. I'm looking for a big payday today. Let's see what happens.

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