Heyaaa everyone, greetings from the biggest city @ Florida – Jacksonville. Just found a decent place to stay after whole day drive from New Orleans, Louisiana state after taking a Swamp tour nearby, during which I could even touch actual alligator, well a small one but still. My road trip around United States is reaching the end day by day so as I am 4th visit here. Finally found some time to renew my blog section, which I was planning to do for a while to talk about my 3rd visit in Vegas and WSOP 2011, which was completely different from the previous ones.

Why was it so ? Simple answer – I was playing way more poker than 2 previous years, plus I finally tried cash games in Vegas, which was more than interesting experience, especially, because I managed to play the games above my expectations – to play @ Bobby’s room in Bellagio. First things first, I arrived in Vegas way earlier than 2 previous times – June 6th as wanted to try out cash games here in Vegas badly.

This year I decided to stay in new hotel – Vdara, after getting plenty of advices about this great place to stay during my recent trips around EPT & WPT tours. Seems I chose I perfect place to stay as most of fellow Lithuanians one by one moved to this hotel, which was not only well good, well connected to the city, but also offered us, poker players decent rates, without playing restrictions, when u have to play certain amount of time a day @ the poker room during the day. For me, it’s one of two the most important things in Vegas, while choosing the place to stay, second one is the place itself – I like to relax after game sessions so I prefer hotels, which don’t have casinos inside.

So the first thing I’ve done after I arrived I went to Rio to finally take my WSOP Main Event prize from the last year, bah had to wait so long as I couldn’t get the winnings before I come again to Vegas, just because of sick situation last year, when I decided to sign the papers later after my road trip & when I was back in Vegas for 1 day, I couldn’t reach the right person to do it . Harrah’s policy is to do it in person no matter what so I had to wait for money for a year, but seems there are many players doing that mistake . So at first I decided to try out some cash games & play them at the Rio as I heard that Rio was the best place for Omaha cash games during recent years. Well, it didn’t look like that for me thought, because of few key reasons (some of them came up later after checking out what other casinos can offer) :

• Bad playing conditions – Rio is kinda interesting place, cause you will have to adapt to different climatic conditions depending on the table you will be playing, so be prepared to take your jumper with you, cause at some tables it might be super cold in others super hot .
• No shuffling machines – bah other casinos like Bellagio ir Venetian have a huge competitive advantage just because of having them.
• Bad dealers – Rio has a huge problem with dealers compared to other places also, probably, because they don’t run cash games on regular basis. Lot’s of them have huge leaks such as difficulties while counting the pot, sometimes even knowing the rules of a certain game & some of them make too many mistakes, while dealing & in such games as Omaha, in which so many card are dealt misdeals take too much time.
• Worse service than in other places, well again huge problem is that Rio is facing huge amount of players & can’t treat the players same way as other casinos.

More about the games now : the first two weeks @ cash games were super terrible for me. I was mostly playing type of PLO I never tried before 5/10/25 (25 posts the button & the action starts on small blind). My shot for the higher games didn’t work out when I lost a huge pot to Eli Elezra, while being favorite after shipping in after the flop & running it twice, also lower games didn’t go my way either. In my opinion during the first few weeks of WSOP the games were actually pretty tough here in Vegas, especially in Omaha, probably because of one key reason, which is.., hehe I guess it’s not so hard to guess – it’s “Black Friday”. It affected live cash games badly :

1. Way more grinders came to Vegas, because of losing their primary way of playing poker.
2. Many very good players were playing @ lower stakes than they used or supposed to, because of having huge parts of their bankrolls frozen.
3. Everyone wants to warm up a bit and play lower & tighter at the start.

So even while playing pretty good and making huge calls in Omaha I lost a lot during first two weeks mostly, because of one simple thing, headache of all Omaha players – huge variance. More into details in my next blog, I guess I’ll write it on Friday after I will have reached my final road trip point – Miami. Good luck at the tables & cya