Summer months are historically slow for me except the odd vegas bink but this was my 2nd best ever July at £6,811. Was slow but steady the first 2-3 weeks but running ok. Finished off with a bang though finding the right games and playing well and running even better in them. Actually ahead of ev across all 3 sites ive played. Volume wasn't huge but was ok given the weather which I still found plenty of time to enjoy. Overall though im still struggling a bit to enjoy the games and find myself getting worryingly bored very quickly in some sessions. More of same for August planned, been indecisive about trips to Nottingham and Barcelona and currently think im going to skip both unless I feel it will help me as a last minute thing closer to the time.
Was a late booking this year as no decent bargains were grabbed early like the year before. In the end I plugged for a flight+hotel combo on expedia which seems to often be the cheapest way of doing vegas these days. Stayed at the same place as the winter trip which meant I had to taxi everywhere due to the heat. The plus side though was being right next to a CVS pharmacy, no resort fee (equals the taxi fees nearly), having no casino in hotel, and a comfy hotel I like and have stayewd at many times before. Trip over wasn't great with delay then sit on tarmac delay (due to our food going on the plane next to us apparently! , don't think captain was bluffing as he sounded shocked - maybe a double bluff though ) Case was within the last 10-20% and then the close taxi rank was shut. Don't get me wrong I wont let any of this ruin my trip and I was glad all this wasn't on the way home. Finally on arrival my luck changes and without asking I get a free upgrade for the full 23 nights im staying. 1 bedroom suite with separate living area and kitchen > 1 room with microwave and fridge.
Back a year ago I was eyeing up doing the full 5 or 6 weeks of the series but when it came to the crunch i left it so late the schedules were all out and apart from missing a good first week it made sense to go mid series as there was a 7 day gap before that with only 1 decent event in it.
Right rather than try and do the trip as it went i will just try to summarise different aspects overall:
Food/Booze/Exercise/WSOP/Nugget/Binions/Venetian/Aria/Gambling/Cash Games/World Cup
Lets start with the shortest one, WORLD CUP. Poor poor watching but it did allow me to have a mental break from the poker with lots of booze the first game but not so much the second. The best part of it allowed me to catch up with some old poker mates from years gone by, some of which not seen for years.
FOOD: Similar to last year as a whole i ate a lot healthier than i do at home and less of it as well ! Very please with that as it seems to have started becoming a habit over there which is good for the long grinds required at times
BOOZE: Drank about the same i would at home which is still a bit much but needed to odd blowout. Summary: completely wasted once, drunk twice and tipsy twice.
EXERCISE: Similar to last year and to food. Somehow my motivation for the gym goes up in vegas and i probably averaged 6 out of every7 days with an hour in the gym usually just walking with a little light jog in there but it tied it perfect with a half of football usually and set me up so well so the day ahead often. Note to self was to try same at home but my motivation slides and it happens a couple of times the first week back before ive got into old habits. The 1/3 stone i lost out there has nearly all gone back on too :(
Managed to go the whole trip without running any part of a board twice but this obviously affected variance more. Saw myself go nearly $4,000 in the hole in the first 6 days with all 5 days i played being losing ones ! Managed to play a bit better and run a bit better the rest of the trip generally though and i think only 2 days of the 11 i played on were losers after that first week. The amazing part of it all was after all that i finished +$50 overall !!! Biggest losing day was -$1,200, biggest winner was +$1,880. Won on big O, Lost on 4 card pl hilo, Lost little on plo/nlh/o8. If i read this before my next trip, advice is stop trying to make things happen and be more patient.
GAMBLING: A loss but one i was ok with and didn't spend too much time on casino gambling this trip.
Right onto the tournaments section which really forms the make or break of any wsop trip for me, start with the lesser ones and leave the wsop ones until last:
ARIA: Had a plo one lined up here but didn't play for good reason elsewhere but did play a nightly 7pm meeting up with some other brits and hitting the booze hard. It was fun and despite entering right at the break my stack actually went huge pretty quick before the luck changed and i bust a few tables out. Mission accomplished though, was fun kind of night off
BINIONS: Only played 1 plo8 mtt here and it wasn't great. Was my only re-entry of the trip and still didn't make it deep. Dealers weren't great as they never deal it so didn't get many hands per level. Standard was bad but i wasn't patient that day and looked to get stacked or go home.
GOLDEN NUGGETT: Played 6 games here (costly in taxis :( ) but it was worth it. With a limited schedule on the venetian this year it meant downtown trips were plentiful which was fine as its a different vibe which is fun for a change. I played 6 x $240 mtts here but didn't cash in any. That said i got a good stack a few times but never sat on it as i know how quick the blinds go up later in the tournament. Best one was having 3 x average with about 30 players left of the original 100 but still bust that 3 tables out not even near the bubble :) I don't regret it as it seems to be the style im more comfortable in mtts these days, esp live, just don't like to fold into the money unless i feel its worth it.
VENETIAN: My favourite room where i spend >90% of my winter trip in. Unfortunately there was only 1 of my mtt types on while i was out there this year. $600 plo8 but fortunately this was a good one for me. I had already bust the noon golden nugget in plenty of time to play this 4pm and i was surprised it got 160 runners as they had capped the plo a week earlier at about half that. Ended up chopped it 5 ways as the shortest stack but i was last to agree just to make sure i was happy with 3rd place money, chipleader only got close to 2nd place money so i was happy with $10,300. This was 9 days into my trip so i had already lost $5,000 on mtts and was $3,000 down on cash at the time so was good timing.
WSOP: In Order i guess
$2,500 Stud8/Omaha8, Made day 2 of this it was the only highlight of my first week in Vegas which was terrible overall. Unfortunately i had lost a few key pots in the last level of day 1 so wasn't stacked at all and went out 30minutes into day 2 about 70-75% into the field.
$1,500 HORSE, Truly awful and summed up that first week as this was on day 6 and i didn't even make the 2nd break. My table draw wasn't great but it just didn't happen
$1,500 PLO: Only event i turned up a little late to as taxis were slow around that time. I lost 1/4 of my stack in the first few hands playing everything and not long after i called a reraise and bluff check raised the cont bet on a A83rainbow flop convinced the guy didn't have AA. Fortunately he folded quickly or i was left with even less than half stack :) VS same guy i got allin on a 664flop with AK44 vs A567 in the 2nd level only for the turn to come 5 but the river was my quad 4 ! Actually got quite a decent stack after that and made it pretty deep. After moving tables twice i hit a table i knew wouldnt break until we hit the money. This table was a lot tougher though and i had to survive another allin for my life once i had dribbled chips away. I missed an opportunity to gamble with a 2nd nut flush draw vs 2 made straights which would have hit but at the time i felt one of them could easily have my hand crushed with the nut flush draw. Other than that i went against my morals a bit and limped into the money right at the end of day1.
Day 2 checked table redraws and made notes (as i do for all day 2s) . Think i had about 18k but average might have been about double that or more at that time. As it turned out i managed to chip up to 30-40k uncalled pushing my draws on flops and getting folds where i was expecting to be called more. Massive key hand came when button big stack limped nad i raised pot from the bb with KQJ9hhdd. Flop came A,10,8xhh . He tried to push me off with a jack high flush draw and i hit my straight on the turn. Flopped a nut flush draw soon after with aces against a tough thinking played. Flush came on turn but i guess i bet too big on the end trying to make it look like a dry ace. That took me to peak stack of about 100k with average about 75-80k at that time i think. Went wrong after that and i lost 2 flips to a dutch chap to my left. Both of these were huge key pots but the hands played themselves. eg 2pair vs pair + f draw.and flush draw and straight draw and pair vs aces in reraised pot. That guy finished me off AQ23 vs AQ9J when i was really short, he went on to get 2nd for $180k i think, i finished 50th/1000ish for just under $5k.
$240 NLH Deepstack. Was in the mood to play one of these one day. over 1000 runners so decent prizes up top. Hit loads first table and had a huge stack but soon lost it after my table broke. Ended up about 200th but it was ok for a change, blinds go up very fast really.
PLO8 $1,500 Made mistake of playing this the day after arriving last year, not good. This year i hoped for a deep run and it seemed on at times but at other times it just didn't happen. I lost a chunk early and got caught bluffing in a tricky pot too. Survived an allin though and just seemed to push on from there. When i moved tables i had a key double up almost immediately in another tricky pot where i hit the perfect river card to make my hand look bluffey and get paid off after the longest tank vs me the whole trip. Again i thought i would push on from there but 1 guy was literally hitting flops 90% of the hands he played. It was sick to watch but i didn't mind as it was another brit and that table ended up being one of the most fun tables i played the whole trip. Cant remember my bust position but i had been crippled by another allin gamble and dribbling away in other missed pots before then. I think i finished between 150th and 200 out of about 1000 runners.
8GAME, This was the day after the above and i hope for a good table draw having cashed in the 10game last year i knew this was key. I was rewarded and it was clear 2 of 3 of the players were NLH players and the others weren't much better. Fast forward 6-8 levels and i was the only survivor on my original table of 7. That said i never had a huge stack just a good one or an average one. Table was completely the other way then with 2 guys that played the $50k HORSE and only 1 weak spot left (other than maybe me now !) Overall i was happy with my game though and i held in there until busting the last level of the day.
PLO8 $3,000 This was the big one of the trip and after finishing 11th last year i was hoping for another deep run. Wasn't to be though as i never really got going. Bust hand though would have put me right back in as it was 3 way to the flop in a rereraised pot which then went hu. I hit my straight on the turn but matey hit his higher one on the river. To be honest it was fine as i had half a stack and was gambling to get a stack again as i knew he had aces and i had a relatively weak high hand only type to try and bust them with. As it was i went and got incredibly drunk (still drinking 6:30am) on the cash tables and couldn't miss later in the night. Ended up being my best cash session of the trip at $1,880.
So overall i bought into $14,330 of mtts and ended up making $745 profit. Met a lot of old faces ive played before and got to know them better as well as meeting lots of new ones im sure i will see again. Socially it was a good trip for the most part, boredom didn't kick in much at all really.
Well that's it for now. Im not booking anything until August but ive got a few things to choose from at the moment.
DTD Nottingham £550 PLO 6MAX AUGUST
EPT Barcelona 1,100 EURO NL HILO, PL HILO AND LIMIT HILO ON 3 CONSECUTIVE DAYS AUGUST
St Maarten USUAL HOLIDAY/FESTIVAL I GO TO IN NOV , ALTHOUGH MAY GO EARLY.
In decisive on all of the above at the moment. Too hot for poker but im trying to still put time in online for the time being. Thanks for reading anyway.