AVP Meet and Venetian Deep Stack

Reports & Blogs by acrtp about Venetian Casino Posted

The idea for this trip was planned after Michigan State threw in a meaningless basket in the waning seconds of the NCAA Championship in April and hit my square precisely on 9-2.

After seeing a great deal on SWA (2 for 1 airfare, plus one free night at Harrah’s), the date for the AVP meet, and the Venetian Deep Stack schedule, everything just filled in nicely.


So, we head out on Thursday evening and arrive on time. We get long-hauled (I think, more below) and end up at Harrah’s with a $22 plus $5 tip fare. We then find out that double rooms are booked, so they’ll have to upgrade us to a suite (NICE). (Unfortunately, the $20 trick the next morning couldn’t keep us in that room for the rest of the weekend – oh well). So, we throw the bags down and head out to Casino Royale some free beers and cheap BJ Switch (aka the Devil’s Game) to pass the time. We end up with a good buzz and few extra dollars in our pockets and head back to get a good night’s sleep before the $350 Venetian DSE I was playing on Friday.

FRIDAY, 11/6 (Venetian DSE) (~470 runners) (sorry about lack of detail, but maid tossed my notes):

Needless to say, I am extremely pumped to be playing in this event as I’ve always wanted to test my abilities in a deeper tourney (i.e. no 4-Level bingo hold’em). I started slowly, raising pre-flop and whiffing the flop mostly. Not too much else went on and I was down to about $9k at the first break.

Somewhere in Level 5, I got into my first significant hand, with the blinds at $100/$200 with a $25 ante, I raise a limper to $1,000 with AKo OTB. The SB calls, BB folds, and the limper folds. (I stated with just over $9 k and he has me covered.) Flop comes A25. SB checks, and I bet $2k into the pot and he calls. My read is that SB is that he has A-paint. The turn is an 8 and the SB checks again. The pot is now about $6.5k and that’s all I have left, I shove. I don’t get an immediate call, so I feel really good. He tanked for about a minute and he shows A-4!!!! I dodge the gutter ball and the 4 to double up to about $18k and I’m on my way. I manage to bust a player when my AQ on a QT8 board holds off AT and I’m up to about $30k. I pick up some smaller pots along the way and have about $41k at the second break and have all kinds of confidence.

I bust another two players after the break: (1) he pushes all in after the flop with a pair, but my flush draw hits on the turn and I bust the other player (2) when my KQ off flops Q-high with 2 spades and he misses spade draw. I’m up to about $56k. Then, I miss a few flops after PF raises and have to fold to aggression. I’m coming down a bit and then pull a Matasow. Level 10: 800/1600/200, folds to the SB, who calls. I check my option with 7-3 off. Board comes J82, check, check. Turn is a Q, he checks and I fire $5k trying to take it down, he calls. Pot is now $15.2k. Turn bricks and I try to buy my way out and fire $9k, he tanks and calls and shows Q9. I’m steaming b/c the thing that usually kills me is betting weak hands from the BB and I know I do this. Immediately after, I raise a limper with AToff and he RR’s me all in and I fold. I’m able to make it to dinner with $31k, but I’m totally defeated.

First hand back from dinner (1000/2000/300), I open from mid-position with ATs to $5k and BB (kid with full on Full Tilt Poker Gear (hat, long sleeve T with patches) who never plays a hand in the 2 hours he’s been at my table pushes in $25k. I reluctantly fold and he shows AK. Nothing much else happens except that I pay the blinds and then am immediately moved to a new table and have to post again. I’m down to about $12k and am just looking for a spot to push. I find 56s UTG and ship it in and I’m able to pick up the blinds and antes. Very next hand, mid position raises to $9k. He had raised every pot he entered to $9k and most of the time had a weak A or even KJ. Folds to me and I find 77 and ship it in. He takes forever to make what should have been an easy call for him. He eventually calls and shows AJ. 7 on the flop and I’m back in business. I’m able to bluff a guy on the river with my missed str8 (guess he had one too or a 3rd pair) and I suddenly find myself up to nearly 60k with only 70 people left (45 get paid).

Finally, it’s my degree all in moment. Blinds 1500/3000/300 and I have about $60k. I look down at AKs UTG and raise it to $10k. Guy in middle position (who just came to table about 5 hands ago – has me just covered) raises to $30k. Folds to me and I tank. I had been trusting my gut all day and I knew he didn’t have A’s or K’s, so I about 50%. I decide calling is out and just decide to shove figuring he might be able to fold a small/medium pair. He tanks a little and says that he’s committed at this point. He calls and shows 99. Flop has a 9 and no spades for me and I’m shown the door 10 hours in the tournament.

All in all, I had an outstanding time. I loved being able to play at my speed instead of having to shove for stacks in level 5 or so. This was my first large buy in tournament and it won’t be my last.

I did the walk of shame, found my buddy and we dumped some cash into the craps game at Bill’s.


We dropped a quick hundo at the Devil’s Game and then meander the strip, do the buffet at Harrah’s and head over to IP for a little 2/4 action. Mike from MA and Dealer Jake are a lot of fun when their dealing your table. I asked Dealer Jake if he was IP Jake and he explained that IP Jake is the manager. We talked a little AVP meet up and TBC. I guess he dressed as TBC for Halloween. I encouraged him to post pictures for us.

I then grabbed a quick bite for dinner and registered for the AVP tourney. I really had a good time. I was able to meet LVM, AlaskaGal, Grump, Minton, and Dmuz and then put faces with a lot of other screen names. My table was great. On my end of the table was DankTree (Washington) and Tina (Oregon) and Alaska Gal was at the other end (hmmm 3 out of top 5 at my starting table). I got to see AA get cracked on hand one by Dank Tree for a double up. I then got to see an awesome AA v KK v JJ hand that AG took down after nailing a K on the turn.

A couple hands later, I pick up QQ in the SB. AG had limped for $200 and I make it $1000 – happy to take the blinds and her limp. BB (Tina) makes it $2,500, AG folded. I want to find out if I’m against AA or KK and mean to raise it to $4,500, but accidentally throw my $5k chip in with my $1,000’s. I’m mutter oh crap and just sit and await my fate. Luckily, she tanks and I feel better. After about 3 minutes she finally mucks JJ – now I wanted that call!

A few hands later, I find AKo and just decide to limp to change it up. Folds around to button who makes it $800 (I think). I call. Flop comes A high and all diamonds. I check and he fires for about $2200 (more than pot). I think that he’s got a pair and is trying to get the flush draw out. Despite my gut telling me I’m beat (and that I don’t have a diamond), I decide my AK is good and shove for about $7k. He snap calls and shows AA and I’m gone. I don’t believe I played that hand so poorly. Oh well and I walk the strip.

I walk the strip for awhile and start to feel tired and sick and just head to bed.

(By the way, the dealers working my table during the AVP were great. They joked and kept the game running well. It seemed as though they knew what a fun group of people we all are.)

SUNDAY, 11/7:

We head to the IP to watch football – I have always liked how they set up their theater for NFL game (despite the horrible TV’s). Bad beat – they no longer use the theater and have actually created a Sports Book. We found two seats in the bar area and watched the Bears get destroyed. Luckily, my money was on Atlanta and they covered.

After that, we milled around Caesar’s and P Ho and made dinner reservations at Pampa’s (Brazilian place in P-Ho). While walking around in my Brian Urlacher jersey, I ran into a Bengals fan (they actually have fans?) and a Cardinals fan and both of them decided to pummel me with insults about how bad my team was. And the worst part, I had no defense, there was nothing I could say, so I just had to stand around and take it. (I do love the drunken exchanges with random people in Vegas.)

We then lost a little here and there and then back to dinner. Wow! Was this place TERRIBLE. Terrible service and only okay food. Our waiter couldn’t be found to bring us a wine menu or to fill our glasses and it seemed as though every server purposely avoided our table. We finally complained to the manager who sent everyone over, but by then, we were totally unimpressed. I would not recommend this place to anyone.

After dinner, I decided to finally step my toe into ½ NL. Harrah’s looked dead so I walked down to Flamingo. It took about 20 minutes, but they opened a new table for. We played one hand 6-handed and then immediately filled up. At the table were 4 buddies from Alaska whose goal was to get drunk and have fun. The others were fairly solid. After a few laps around, I felt comfortable and wasn’t intimidated. I dropped about $60 of my initial $200 just by missing flops and folding. My first big hand was limping with 7/8 spades and then calling the button’s raise to $10 with 2 others. Flop came 96K with two diamonds. Check to raiser who bet $20 and only I called. I put him face cards. Turn was a beautiful off suit T. I decided to check and let him build the pot. He bet $30 and I just decided to call b/c I was pretty sure that he wasn’t on a diamond draw. River was an off suit 2 and I shipped my stack in. He contemplated about 5 minutes and finally called and I showed the winner. My first big NL pot!!!!

After that, I got a lot more confident and started building my stack while the Alaskan’s got drunker and drunker. One of them must have bought in 5x for $100 and kept getting rivered. I played one pot with him where he flopped trip aces and I turned a straight and stacked him. As he called my river bet, he mumbled that my kicker was probably better – he was having that kind of night.

A new dealer came in and complained about tips on his first pot – that immediately ruined the good time at the table and everyone just sort of left with 5 hands – what a downer, but I had more than doubled my buy in, so I was happy.

Feeling confident, I stumbled into Casino Royale to play more of the Devil’s Game and starting to hit 20 after 20. I started throwing money at the dealer and she was more than grateful and kept giving me winners. I told her if I win, you win. I even convinced others at the table to start throwing her tips for their hands too – we were having great time. She got tapped out and told the next dealer that “I was a sweetheart and to give me a rack of chips.” She proceeded to hit BJ on her first hand and I called it night.

I had a quick craps session the next morning and that was it. (I think that in addition to 6/5 BJ; strip hotels have enforced a rule that no more than 3 points per shooter may be made.) I’ve got to learn to stay of the machi, eeer, pit games.

It was a great trip (not profitable), but I was able to get everything I wanted to into this trip….can’t wait until next fall.

In summary:

Pluses: Venetian Deep Stack, AVP Meet, meeting AVP’ers, the Devil’s Game, dealers at both IP and AVP tourney, and my first experience at ½ NL.

Minuses: Getting long-hauled (unless construction on Koval was terrible at 10pm on a Thursday), 3 different dealers openly complaining about tips (Flamingo and Casino Royale), and craps – not one winning session and no more than 3 points for any shooter.

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  1. Great trip report. Nice run in the Venetian Tournament.

    And yes there are Bengals fans out there...Im one of them. Lol. My guess is you got trash talked by a cardinals and bengals fan due to both teams not having any reason to trash until recently (cards after last years run, Bengals this year)

    We Bengals fans dont get a chance to trash talk that often, so when we do, its in full force!!!