Sunday, March 27, 2016

Vegas Poker Scene (April Ante Up Column)

Here's my newest column for Ante Up.  The link for it on the Ante Up website is here.   Remember, my contribution is embedded in the entire West Coast report.  So below is just my Vegas report.  The magazine should be in your local poker room soon.

PLANET HOLLYWOOD: The poker room recently moved to a central location in the casino next to the Pleasure Pit, which is an area where table games are dealt by attractive women wearing provocative clothing. That should give the poker players something to distract them when they are card dead.The new room has 10 tables.

The tournament schedule has been revamped, too. The $75 tournament runs daily at 10 a.m., 1 p.m., 4 p.m. and 9 p.m. Each has a $1,250 guarantee with guarantees for the first three places.First place pays $700, second is $400 and third is $150.Players start with 10K chips and play 20-minute levels.
A $65 bounty tournament runs nightly at 6. The bounties are $25, the starting stack is 8K and the levels are 20 minutes.The $125 Players Choice tournament runs Tuesdays 11 p.m. with the same starting stack and levels, but the bounties are $50 and there’s a $500 guarantee.
The main cash game is $1-$2 no-limit hold’em with a $100 minimum, $300 maximum buy-in. Promos include high-hand bonuses and hourly splash pots of between $25 and $250.
The next Phamous Poker Weekend is April 22-24.The main event will be the River Card Poker Tour event that offers a $100K guarantee.The buy-in is $350 and there are four starting flights, two a day beginning April 22.The evening events are $130 double-stack turbos.On April 24, while the second day of the main event is taking place, there’s a triple-stack turbo bounty tournament ($50 bounties) for $130.That one offers a $5K guarantee.
BINION’S: The downtown poker room has changed the buy-ins for its tournaments. The daily (except Saturday) 1 p.m. tournament is $75 for 10K chips, with a $10 add-on for 5K chips more. At the first break, players may buy 5K chips for $10. The levels last 20 minutes. There’s no change in the popular $160 buy-in Saturday deepstack with a $10K guarantee.
The 7 p.m. is $55 for 5K chips, with a $10 add-on for 3K and a $10 add-on at the first break 2K more. The levels are 15 minutes.
There’s a new Live Play Bonus promo offered for tournament players.Those who have played 5-20 hours of live poker in the seven days before any tournament they play are eligible for a progressive prize should they win the tournament.The minimum prize is $1K for the afternoon tournament and $500 for the evening offering.If the tournament winner has played five hours the previous week, he earns 25 percent of the progressive prize pool. For 10 hours it’s 50%, for 15 hours 75% and 20 hours gets the player 100% of the progressive pool. The prize pools increase daily by $100 for the afternoon and $50 for the evening tournaments.
Cash-game players get $2 per hour in comps and there’s a cash-back program for playing. It’s $50 for 20 hours, $150 for 30 hours, $250 for 40 hours and $400 for 50 hours. The main cash games are $1-$3 NLHE with a $100 minimum and no max and a $2-$6 spread-limit hold’em game with a $30 minimum.
WYNN: The poker room is moving and the property is promising an “elevated experience” for players.The new location will be adjacent to the Encore Players Club, the Encore Beach Club, the Surrender nightclub and Andrea’s restaurant.The room will occupy 8,600 square feet and have 28 tables.There will be sportsbook window in the room as well as 35 65-inch televisions.The room is scheduled to open May 26.
MANDALAY BAY: On the south end of the Strip, the 10-table room offers great tournament and cash-game action.Two $40 buy-in tournaments run daily, at 10 a.m and 3 p.m. Players start with 4K chips and get 20-minute levels. A $5 staff bonus is worth 1K chips.The 10 p.m. tournament is $65 and offers 15-minute levels and a $10K starting stack.
The main cash game is $1-$2 NLHE, with a $100-$300 min-max. The room also offers a $1-$3 game with $100-$1K min-max, as well as a $2-$5 game ($200-$2K min-max). On occasion, a $5-$5 game runs ($500-$2K).

The room also offers a Luckiest Player Challenge. There are two periods per week, one Monday through Thursday and the other Friday through Sunday.Players earn points toward these challenges for hours played and for hitting qualified high hands. The top-five point-earners on weekdays get paid between $100 and $900, while top-four point-earners on weekends get between $200-$600.
Another promo is the Big Slick Royal Progressive. Catching a royal flush with ace-king as the player’s hole cards earns a progressive jackpot that starts at $500 and grows $25 a day until it hits.
In addition to progressive high-hand bonuses for quads or better on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays there’s a tiered bonus for hitting the high hands.Catching the high hand on the flop is worth $300, on the turn $200 and on the river $100.
VENETIAN: Jordon Cristos of Palmdale, Calif., took home the $132K prize for winning the $1,600 main event at the Deep Stack Extravaganza on Feb. 22.Angelo Spinazzola of Las Vegas was runner-up ($93K).Eric Baldwin and Ryan Welch, both Vegas residents, each claimed $80K.The prize pool was $750K and there were 509 entrants.
ALIANTE: The three-table room, using electronic tables in North Las Vegas, closed in March.


  1. Hey Rob, regular reader here missing your posts. Don't let your many fans down now sir - I'm sure I speak for many to say we are looking forward to reports of that latest trip, beats and all!

    1. Thanks Anony, really appreciate it......glad you are looking forward to more but I haven't gone anywhere. I have a post going up this afternoon/evening and should be back to my regular schedule now.