Went up to the Philadelphia area to go to Sesame Place, and since we were there the night before I decided to check out the poker scene at Parx Casino. It's a very nice casino, and I would absolutely go back if I'm in the area. I have a hard time seeing it as a destination for me from Virginia, mostly because I have to pass other casinos to get there. I'd go up for a tournament and in fact I had originally planned to go up for the Parx Poker Open this month. My work schedule didn't work out to do that, so I'll have to wait for the WPT event next year.
I got there about 10PM and there was a massive wait for 1-2 NL. I put my name on the list and was told that it would be about an hour wait. I do think that this is probably unusual for a Sunday night, with the evacuation of Atlantic City and closure of those casinos being a factor. I waited for about 45 minutes, and then I put my name on the 1-3 PLO list that had been shrinking and was now only two other people. Mostly I just wanted to see my name on the list somewhere, the list only showed the first 20 names for each game and I still hadn't broken the top 20 for 1-2 NL. A few minutes later I got called for that game and since I was still 18th on the NL list I decided to take the seat.
I've played some PLO online, but not a whole lot, so I was a little apprehensive about playing it in a casino. It turned out ok though with a few minor issues. I had a lot of trouble dealing with the cards. I've never had to look at 4 cards and it turned out to be a lot harder than I anticipated. I know I slowed the game down, but the table was really friendly and nobody complained. I also had trouble remembering my cards. Again, I've not played a whole lot of PLO before, so seeing what my draws were and more importantly seeing what other likely draws my opponenets had turned out to be quite difficult. It did force me to pay more attention than I sometimes do, which can't be a bad thing.
For some reason the 1-3 PLO game was in the higher limit area of the poker room. I'm guessing this is a dealer thing since the game is more complicated to deal, but it was weird playing 1-3 stakes and sitting next to a table playing 200-400. I think it made cocktail service better though, not that I needed that since I couldn't stay long. I was impressed with how responsive the floor was to players at that 200-400 table. At one point one of the players called the floor over and after he rushed right over , the player said "There's this Hooter's competition on that TV way over there. We need that on this TV!" I wasn't facing that screen, but it did seem to distract some of the guys at my table who were facing it. One woman at my table, who was facing the screen, said "This is awesome, we need to have this on all the time. My hourly rate would triple."
The game itself went pretty well for me. Mostly because I did a decent job of not getting myself into any tough spots, but I also got some good cards at the right time. There were a few hands I want to talk about. Some were good and some were bad.
First hand I get dealt I have AsAcxsxc and 5 people see a flop for 25 each. Flop brings three hearts. First to act bets pot and another player raises pot. I fold. No way I have the best hand here, so no sense getting crazy and calling off my entire stack.
Next significant hand. I have 55xx. 5 people see a flop for 5 each. Flop is 55x with two hearts. I check first to act. Player to my left bets 20. Everyone folds to me and I call. I actually think about raising, and it takes me a little while to call, but mostly because I'm trying to control my shaking hands. I check the turn and my opponent bets 25. I raise to 50 hoping to get some value out of the hand and my opponent calls. River is another heart and I bet 50. My opponent bets pot which puts me all in. I call and double up.
Next significant hand. I have Ad4dJcTc and play a limped 6 way pot. The flop is QdKd3c I call a 25 dollar bet as do three other people. Turn is a meaningless 6s and everyone checks. River is Jh and everyone checks. I win a decent size pot. Now, you're probably wondering why the hell I didn't bet my hand on the river. One guy at the table even asked me that question directly. Short answer is I'm an idiot. I had so many draws that I completely missed when the draw that gave me a straight hit. I was thinking I had a flush draw which missed, and an open-ender that also missed, but I forgot that I had A-T which made the J a straight card for me. I absolutley threw away some value here. I think I could have gotten $50 out of the guy who had KQ. This error is totally my not being as familiar with Omaha as I could be.
Next significant hand. Another mistake on my part. Battle of the blinds. I had a bunch of low cards double suited. On the flop I had a 6 high flush draw and a pair of 2s. I checked and my opponent checked. The turn completed my flush draw and I called a 25 dollar bet. I also check called a 25 dollar bet on the river. Not sure what I was thinking here. His betting pattern practically screamed that he had a better flush than me. I sort of feel like I just threw 50 dollars away on this hand.
Next significant hand> Yet another misstep on my part. I had 55xx and called a 15 dollar bet. Five of us took a flop of A5T. Player to my right went all in for 63 dollars. I just knew I was up against either AA or TT, but I couldn't fold it. Three other players folded and I lost to AA. To make matters worse, he was holding the case 5, so I was drawing completely dead. I probably should have folded pre-flop and I should absolutley have listened to my instincts that said I was up against AA or TT on the flop.
Final significant hand. I have 66xx on the button. I call a raise to 15 with 2 other people. Flop is 69T rainbow. Opponent bets 25 and other opponent calls. I call the 25 and the turn is an A. He bets 25 and I call. The river is another 9. I bet 50 and he folds. I was thinking that I was up against 78 and I was calling to have the board pair. Not sure that was a good call on my part. I now wonder if he had that at all. There was no flush, so a straight would have been good if I didn't have a full house.
So all in all I made out ok. I probably should have won more than I did, but it still was a nice little profit for about an hour of play. I am clearly an awesome PLO player. I have the data point to prove it.