Monday, May 12, 2008

Baby Steps - Day 1

So I'm living the dream, or that's what I've told myself since moving out to Vegas and away from the friends and family I love so much and miss terribly back in Southern New Jersey. It's only been about 4 weeks but since I've been waiting on my funds from the IRS to show up it's been a lot of reading to pass the time. And what better material to read then study guides that will help me with my newly chosen (read: illadvised) career of professional card player. So during the past month or so, I have broken up my time between unpacking and reassembling my belongings shipped from Jersey by reading two books on no limit hold'em (Sklansky/Miller's No Limit Hold'em: Theory and Practice and Brunson's No Limit chapter in Super/System 2.) So armed with the knowledge contained in those two publications and my new bankroll courteous of Uncle Sam returning to me what he accidentally overdrafted from my federal income taxes I set off to cut my teeth and prove to the world (ok just my friends who are living vicariously through me) that I am up to the challenge. Going out to brave a scary new world of gambling for a living, I chickened out and reverted directly back to my bread and butter - low limit hold'em.

The nice thing about living in Vegas (actually the Green Valley district of Henderson) is that there are two things required for decent poker games. They are people with time and people with money. Throw in a gaming friendly political environment for the state and you have a card player's paradise (the weather's not so bad either.) So today I worked up the nerve to actually drive my ass over to Green Valley Ranch (, my local casino no more than 2 miles from my place, and sit down in a newly opened 4/8 with 1/2 kill limit game. I only had two hours to kill before I had to go pick up my girlfriend from her job so I figured I couldn't get hurt too badly if my game was rusty or the competition was better than I remembered facing in Atlantic City. Fortunately, the games do not appear to be any tougher out here at least judging from this session and the few I've played on past trips to Vegas. I played the tight/aggressive style that I've always employed and was very pleased with the results during this 90 minute feeling out session. I had never played with a kill before so I had to "act like I know" what the hell was going on with the green button that was getting passed around and then flipped to red once a villain won two pots back to back. Gotta admit, I really like the kill style of play. At GVR, the half kill turns the game into 6/12 for one hand which I played a bunch of at Borgata back in AC. You can really make some money during these kill pots since many of the players do not adjust to the higher stakes and continue to play their loose/passive/weak style of play. Another thing that caught me off guard was the fact that dealers and floor personnel (aka the "brush") can sit in on the game when either the room is slow or they are off duty. That would never fly in Jersey. Hell, a dealer or floor person can't even play in their own casino let alone while on the clock. Luckily, casino workers are some of the loosest and most aggressive players you can find. They actually hinder my style a bit, but when I pick up hands I love to play back at them. That's actually how I made the majority of my earn for this session. The girl who seated me, Christina, happened to be on the button in my game and raised 2 limpers. I was in the small blind with AQo and took a flop. The big blind folded and the limpers do what limpers do, they called. The flop was rags and we all checked to the raiser. She bet, I felt I had a bigger hand than she did and decided to take a card off. One limper came along for the ride. An A fell on the turn and I checked it again, this time with the intention of check/raising brush girl when she fired again. The limper checked and right on queue she did not disappoint me. I took it up a unit, the limper got out of my way and I was almost certain she was going to my fold. After some thought she decided to see the river. Another inconsequential card fell and I bet. She made what I can only think was a crying call with something like AJ and I scooped a very nice pot. After that, I just grinded away a bit more using my tight/solid image to pick up some pots and then I had to go pick up wifey since she is the bread winner of the household and I couldn't keep her waiting.

so, the figures for day 1 look like:
(expect to see these at the bottom of each posting - it'll give you the skinny on how I'm doing as a "pro" and the variance involved with playing every day.)

Hours Played This Session: 1.5
Take: $97
$ per hour: $64.67

Month to date: $97
Year to date: $97
Hourly Rate Year to Date: $64.67
Total bankroll: $714

P.S. ~ the total bankroll is what I was up in live cash game play from games in Jersey prior to moving. All sessions are tracked on StatKing to ensure accuracy in my record keeping and analysis of my results. if you're serious about your game, I highly recommend it.

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