Excitement in the Air……… WSOP, Deep Stacks and Grand….. Let the planning begin!!!

The Summer of 2011 promises to be busy and exciting for Pokerhag and hopefully for all of us low limit grinders. We will be in Las Vegas this summer for the WSOP and planning to make some changes to our approach this year.

Last summer, we went to the WSOP for the first time and the first piece of business was playing in my first WSOP event……..it was a $1500 buy in event #42. I knew there were a number of pitfalls here but being a kind of “bucket list” kind of thing so proceeded to play. It was so exciting getting to my first table and see Shannon Elizabeth, Lee Childs and Alan Smurfit, 2007 PLO bracelet winner, sitting there. Layne Flack was a table away and everywhere I looked there was another familiar face.

After about 3 hours our table broke and was moved to table with Nam Le…..Melanie Weisner came later short stacked and busted out quickly. Dean Hamrick, who eventually won that event, and Durrrr were both a table away on either side. It was an awesome experience and I was totally a fan boy for the day…watched Phil Ivey get his bracelet…my day ended after about 6-7 hours and was worth every penny…….once.

A couple of days later after hanging out at the Rio and star gazing, I started looking to see all the events taking place around town and played some cash games which was fun. We checked out the Venetian Deep Stacks and Golden Nugget Grand Series. The Rio was also running a well structured tourney each day for $200 and I assume they will continue this year. I ended up playing one of the events in the Grand Series, liked the structure and was able to get a min cash after playing for 13 hours. There were lots of regulars and a great mix of good players and not so good players…..was a really good experience.

What I really learned for my style and level of play is that the Nugget and Venetian series will work better for me. While I loved playing the WSOP, I will never play another event there unless it has a higher buy in so that the starting stack is larger. The NLHE $2500 will be the lowest one I will consider. With the lower buy in tourneys, after about 2-3 hours you just have to be willing to shove or you get blinded down to nothing. I got good cards in the beginning but had nothing to work with most of the next 4 hours….. and I was not being a complete nit…just had nothing to work with. If you got a hand, you would get action….was just not to be.

Now making my plans for this summer…..the Golden Nugget and Venetian have announced their schedules. These are great alternatives to the larger buy ins at the WSOP. The Venetian has the higher buy in events of the two running from about $300-$1000 or so and the Nugget running from $125-$550 with most being the $125 and $230. I think I will concentrate on the Nugget this year….there is plenty of action and my total focus this year will be making money……gotta build that bankroll.


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