March Madness Vegas Trip 08


I left Orlando on Tuesday (3/18). I had a 7:30 pm flight. First class- Watched American Gangster- I highly recommend the movie). I was staying at TI on this trip. I ended up getting in a little early. I must say it was the quickest I ever got my bag and you could get a cab right away- No Wait. I noticed on the cab ride over that Mandalay was dark. I decided to stay at TI for Tuesday night and play a little 1-3 NL. TI didn't have the mix game going that night. It ended up being a good night. I played for about 3 hours. I bought in for $300. The table didn't have a lot of money on it. I ended up $350 for the session. I hit a set of fours twice and the other player could not let go of there over pair. Good start to the trip.

On Wednesday I went over to the Wynn to eat breakfast at their buffet. I highly recommend the buffet- Great food. I ended up playing a little 1-3 NL. I had another great short session. I bought in for $300 and placed two $100 bills on the table. I ended up $300 after two hours. Again I hit trips and the person with the over pair could not let it go. I ended up going back to TI and play in the Wed NOON Bounty tourney. I got to the tourney and basically got the last active seat. I ended up misplaying AJ when the flop came J high. I lost to pocket Q's. I have the theory of playing these bounty tournaments fairly agressive (More agressive than a normal tournament). I ended up being a short stack (20% of my starting stack). I ended up flopping top pair from the big blind and ran into another player who hit top two. I was done in just over 30 minutes. I decided to play the Venetian NOON tournament. It had about 110 players on that day. I ended up losing about half of my stack early. I nursed the short stack for the better part of 5-6 levels. I pushed with pocket Jacks and actually hit quads on the flop. The other player had pocket 8's. I still had less than the average, but I had enough. I ended up losing my stack (Hand doesn't stick out) on about the end of the 8th level. I busted 31st. On Wednesday night I went to the Wynn and played about a 8+ hour session of 2/5NL. I ended up down for this session about $400, which is the same amount as one big pot I played against the big stack. I had pocket Q's, and raised pre-flop. I made it $25 to go. I got two callers. Flop came 3-2-2. I bet out $50. One player folded, the other called. The turn was an 8. I bet out $75, and got called again. River was an Ace. I checked and he bet out $250. I didn't believe he had an ace and I was right. I also did not put him on 4-5. He was tight aggressive and when he showed hands they were premium hands, other than this time when he showed K-2. Ugh. Basically I am even after Wednesday.

Thursday- After placing my NCAA bets (Went 7-3 on Thursday, 3-3 on NBA including the Lakers as a money line dog at Utah), I ate at Mirage buffet. Funny thing was the fire alarm went off. They did not require everyone to get out- they investigated why the alarm went off. Turned out it was a false alarm. I went to play 2-5 at Bellagio after this. I played for about 7 hours. I ended up having a very good session. I bought in for $500, and cashed out for almost $1,100. I flopped Quad Q's and got paid after checking the flop and turn. I raised pre flop to $25, and was re-raised to $100. I called. Flop came Q-Q-x. Check, check. Turn was a K. Check, Check. River was an A. I bet out $110 and was called. The other hand that sticks out during this session was the following: I was in the big blind.I had 2c-4c. 8 limpers into the pot. I decide that since I have the biggest stack on the table, and I have been playing TAG (The table saw me fold pocket 8's on a 10-3-3-10 board- other player shoved with 6-2) I was going to pop it. I made it $45. Everyone folded except one other player (Short stack). Flop came A-3-5 rainbow. I push all-in, and he only had $75 left and called. The table was shocked that I would make such a play.

Thursday night I ended up going to the Venetian and played in a wild 2-5 NL game. Check out some of this action:

First hand after sitting down- Ac-5c. I ended up catching a wheel after four of us went to the flop on a $25 raise). I ended up almost $300 on this hand.

Second hand after sitting down- 2-2. I end up calling the pre flop raise of $25 from the small blind. I was the third caller. The big blind made it $100 to go. One player folded, one called, another called and I folded. Flop comes 6-3-2. Small blinds pushes, and I am sick. HE is called by another guy with pocket J's (Same guy had pocket J's in the last hand). The small blind had 6-3. Well I felt better when a J fell on the river.

A few hands later I had A-10 and called a pre flop raise of $50. I ended up taking about a $300-$400 pot of the pre-flop raiser (He had pocket Q's)., Ace hit on the flop.

Next hand I was in the blind and had pocket K's- I raised to $40 pre flop. I got two callers. Flop was a rainbow- 8 high. I bet out $110. Fold, and then this lady pushes all-in. She had $350-$400 in front of her. I called. She was making a move with J-9 off. She had to hit runner runner, and guess what she did. UGH.

A little latter on I play Q-10 from the big blind. 5 callers on a pre-flop raise of $25. Flop came J-9-8 rainbow. I checked. Pre flop raiser bet out. Everyone folds other than myself. I call. Turn is an A. I lead out and make a comment I want to see where I am at. He pushes and I insta call. River was a J. He ended up having A-Q.

The last interesting hand was as follows: I had A-9 in the small blind. 5 players to the flop (Pre flop raise was $30). Flop was 9-7-6- two hearts. I check, big blind checks, the initial raiser bets out $60 (How Weak). One player folds, one calls, and I call. Big blind raises to $360. I am shocked as my head just turns to the left. Initial raiser folds quickly, and the next play calls. I stop and think for a moment or two- I keep telling myself I'm beat- no way you can call this. I finally fold. I did show the guy to my right my hand. Turn is an A. He comments that I might be good now. Big blind now checks. The other player (The lady who sucked out on me with J-9) pushes all-in for another $400-$500. Thebig blind (Another lady) calls. River is a 9. I'm now sick because I know I have the best hand. Check out these two hands. Big blind had K-8. The other player had the Jh-10h. Both missed their draws. Unreal. The table went nuts for the next hour talking about this hand. I ended up $500 for the session but left shaking my head on what might have been if I took this monster pot. Up over $1,000 at this point.

On Friday I ended up never leaving TI. I played a late morning session and ended up losing -$300 in the 1-3NL game. My head was hurting and I went upstairs to nap. I came back downstairs in the afternoon and had a great session going (Bought in for $500 and about 60-90 minutes later I was at $1,300). I ended up losing a $300 pot when the flop came Q-8-2. I had Q-2 and the other guy had the Q-8. I ended up almost $500 for the session, but had to quit when TI couldn't get the Clemson game on the TV. Not TI's fault, as Troy and the staff made every effort to call over to the Mirage to get the game on (See even when I am not at the Mirage that hotel is still messing with me.) I went over to the sports book and watched Clemson blow a big lead to Villanova. (At least I went 8-4 for the day on my bets). After the game I went back over to the poker room and ended up playing till 7am. The table had good ole Greg. Greg was sucking down beers left and right, listen to heavy metal on his Ipod. He could barely put his chips out on the table or into the pot for that matter. For about 2 hours I was worrying if he was going to hold everything down, but boy could he hit some cards. I think this guy was up for the night. The other positive thing about Greg was that he was a great tipper for the dealers, but the fact that he was that trashed and up left you shaking your head. I ended up getting stuck $600 in this 1-3 NL game. I had AA cracked by Q-9. I got bluffed off the best hand by the most conservative player at the table. He showed and I had the best hand. I was also playing a lot of hands, and had to because I was not getting the cards pre-flop.

Now I'm up over $500 for the poker part of the trip.

On Saturday I played a brief 2-5 NL session at Bellagio. I end up losing a $250 pot (last hand I played). I raised pre-flop with A-10. I got called by two players. Flop was 10-7-4. I lead out and was called. I was min- re-raised on the turn. The turn was a 7. The guy ended up with 10-7. Sick. Anyway I moved to a 5-10 NL game. I buy-in for the full $1,000. I end up going down to about $475. Then I win a nice pot with a semi-bluff. I end up moving from the must-move with about $750 in front of me. I played a TAG style once again. I built my stack to about $1,200, and then I looked at AK in the small blind. One of the big stacks raised to $90. The next player re-raised to $200. I felt one of these guys were very strong. I elect to fold AK pre-flop from the small blind. These two guys go to the flop- K high, and the first guy pushes all-in. He had about $2,500 in front of him. The next guy did not make the call- he only had about $1,000. It left me thinking- did I make the right move? I kept telling myself I will find a better spot. Two orbs later that better spot came Same player raises to $90. The same player re-raises to $200. I look down at AA and I have position and about $1,300 in front of me. I call raise and make it $650. The first player mucks quickly. The second guy goes into the tank and folds but not before showing me a King. I built my stack up to $1,800. I ended up cashing out about $300 ahead- basically even for the day when you count the 2-5 quick session. A lot of great play occured at this table. I ended up folding A-Q, A-K x2, 9-9, 10-10 pre flop. At least two other players folded AK pre-flop. Another player folded queens pre-flop. It was the polar opposite from the 1-3 NL game at TI from the day before. I end up having a poor day with the NCAA going 3-5.

I woke up late on Sunday. I decide not to bet on the games. I also decide I only want to play some smaller buy-in tournaments to work on my tournament play. I play in the $65 1:30 tourney at Paris. Horrible structure. I end up losing when my K-10 loses to 2c-3c. Yes all the money went in pre-flop. Guy hits a club flush- 3 high.

I then try to make it over to Caesars for their 3pm, but it was sold out. I also missed out at eating at Mesa Grill. I decide to go play at Harrahs 3:30 tourney. 60 players. I end up collecting one bounty and make the final table. I end up busting out when my QJ loses to KK. I pushed as I had 2.5x times the big blind, and the big stack to my left says all-in. I tell him thanks for the protection and let him know he has me crushed. It wasn't a bad tournament. I then ate dinner at Mirage buffet before catching the red eye back to Orlando.

Good trip- Plan on coming to Vegas for 9 days in July. Already looking forward to it!!!

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  1. Great report! I remember that wild 2/5NL game at the Venetian ... roller coaster! Thank gawd for the 24s. :sunglasses:

  2. I think the Venetian has the best 2-5 NL game in Vegas at this point if you want action.