Poker Tim’s Vegas Adventure

July 25, 2006

Hey guys,


Just thought I’d update you briefly on how the world series of poker tournament went. It was being held in the Rio on Friday, so I got there on Thursday afternoon to pick up my chips and register. I won the seat through Full Tilt poker, so I went to their hospitality suite in the Rio hotel, which is just off the strip and where all the WSOP events are held.


Each of the online sites has their own hospitality suite at the Rio, where they have free food and tshirts, caps, etc., plus TVs and lounges where you can hang out at. It’s all to promote their site. Outside of each of these hospitality suites, they have hired what looks to be legal hookers to smile at you and hand you a brochure as you enter. I don’t know where they get these girls, whether it is Las Vegas high or UNLV, but they must truck them in special because they are all knockouts, but they also dress them up from some kind of Hookers-R-Us store, it is so over the top it is hard to keep a straight face. Some of them stand there and try to sell you clothes like underwear that says, “I lost it on the River,” on it, for one example. I didn’t know poker had turned into an NC-17 sport, but I guess it did sometime in the last year.


So anyway I went into the suite, and it was crammed with people. Clonie Gowen was there, if you have heard of her, she is a famous pro who is sponsored by Full Tilt. She and everyone else was scarfing down all this free food.


I said I needed to pick up chips for the tournament, and they said, “Oh, you need to talk to Richard.” So they yelled for Richard, and this Satanist looking guy came walking up, looking like he was late for an orgy or something. He said, “follow me into this back room.” I wasn’t thrilled about that, but I wanted my chips so I followed Richard the satanist into the back room. He pops open this briefcase, and luckily had chips in there and not handcuffs and whips. He crosses my name off a list and then gives me 2000 in Rio chips, and tells me to stand in the registration line for the event.


While I am in the line I start to think that all I have to do is just step out of the line and go to the nearest cage, and I can have 2000 in cash. But of course like an idiot I keep standing there and register for the stupid thing.


They had the shorthanded 5k event going on at the time, and I recognized Chris Ferguson and Men Nguyen and a bunch of other famous pros. They all looked kind of like zombies, they’d probably been playing nonstop for the past 3 weeks.


Outside there was another kiosk advertising something or otther, and 4 girls in their hooker gear standing there. Except this time they even had a pole there, and one of them was dancing around it. At 2 in the afternoon. Good grief. Then I looked to my left, and Scott Nguyen is standing there smoking a cigarette and watching, like a total perv. It was, “a typical disgusting display,” as a famous sports announcer once yelled. 😉


I did go to the Bellagio poker room and play, that is a nice place. Very crowded but cool. Phil Laak, the unambomber guy, was playing there and running his mouth. They had a tournament going and that comedian/actor Norm McDonald was playing in it, apparently. Phil Ivey was playing in the back room, probably destroying people, but he looked pretty bored.


Anyway, the tournament kind of blew. They give you 2000 in starting chips, the same as the entry fee. You have a seat assignment, mine was table 119 seat 3, or something like that. They had 2,020 entrants, and first place was something like 860k. It was being televised by ESPN but I never saw any cameras. Only the top 198 actually cashed, so 1800 went home with nothing. It was to take 3 days, with the final table on Sunday.


So anyway I sat down, and there were 10 of us at the table, and the blinds for the first hour started out at 25-25. They had this big clock on the wall like a football scoreborad, counting down from 59:59. When it hit zero then they upped the blinds to 25-50. After the second hour was over there was a 20 minute break, then the blinds went up to 50-100. That is where you really feel pressure, if you haven’t increased your chips you only have about 1500 or so left because of the blinds, and now you have to pay 150 just in blinds, every 10 hands. So the 3rd hour is when a lot of people really start getting into all in or fold situations. Whenever you have less than 10x the big blind, you are in trouble.


I was really kind of disappointed, because everyone played pretty much like on the internet– like idiots. Which is no surprise I guess because most of us qualified on the net. But you could not bluff at all, because they just called everything and were really wild players. So you had to just sit there and hope to catch some cards. It was way more luck than I thought it would be, and that sucked. On the very first hand, a dealer shouted, “seat open, table 231!” so some jackass went bust on the very first hand. Actually 5 people at my table busted out in the very first hour, they were playing so wildly, and they kept bringing over people to replace them.


For the most part I got really bad cards, so outside of the blinds, I only voluntarily played 4 hands before I was knocked out at about 3 o’clock (it started at noon).


On only the third hand of tournament, I was in the small blind (blinds are 25-25). The under the gun (first to act) guy raises it to 75, and everyone folds around to the button, who calls the 75. I looked down at my cards, and I have red queens (QQ). I raised it to 300, because I wanted to end it right there, as I was out of position and did not want to have an ace or king come on the flop. The initial raiser thought for a long time, and then calls the 300. The guy on the button folded.  Of course the flop came A-something-something, so the damn ace hit. I had to bet something to represent the ace (act like I had AK), because if I just checked, he would have known I didn’t have it, and just bet and take the pot. So I bet half the pot, which was 300. He just called, so I figure he might very well have an ace. I don’t want to go out of the tournament on the 3rd hand, so I just checked the turn, he bet big, and I folded. So that sucked, five minutes into the thing I am down to only 1300 chips (from the 2000 starting amount).


From there I got no hands except a J9 on the button which I limped with for 75, missed the flop, and then folded. The second hour they raised the blinds to 25-50, and I got dealt KK. Great! I raised it to 200, and everyone just folded. So I only won 75, big deal.


They broke our table and assigned me to one clear across the convention center after that, then sent us off on 20 minute break.


When they got back they raised the blinds to 50-100, as it was the third hour. Now I am in deep trouble, thanks to the QQ hand and the blinds, I only have 950 left in chips. If you are under 10x the big blind you are in all in or fold mold, and the blinds were now 50-100, so I was there.


At 3 o’clock this guy raised it to 300, and I looked down and had AK of hearts. So I reraised all in for 950. He thought a long time (again), and then called. He had 33. The board cards came all low, I missed, and it was sayonara.


So it kind of sucked.


Anyway it was fun, but I was disappointed at how much pure luck there was. I think if I ever qualify again, I will just fly out there, pick up the chips, cash them in at a cage, and fly home.


Hope you all are doing well, and that I didn’t bore you with the Scotty Nguyen hooker story, etc.





3 Responses to “Poker Tim’s Vegas Adventure”

  1. Gigohead Says:

    Poor Norm — He had a rough time at the WSOP. It’s chronicled on

  2. ducly Says:

    I’ll have to check it out, Thanks Gigohead

  3. If you love poker then you should check out this amazing site I found. It has everything you need to get started with playing poker! It also has great pricing on chips, shirts, card protectors, tables, and much more!

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