Las Vegas WSOP June 2022 Trip Report

 

Another fun trip to Las Vegas to play in the World Series of Poker is in the books!  There were two SimoneTeam Promo winners coming along to play with me in the $1500 Monster Stack bracelet event.  Debra P (CZip) and Mark F (colt1912) each won their way into this huge event by winning one of our multi-month poker promos.  We also saw a few other SimoneTeam promo players while in Vegas…Joe (LuckyAAAhole), Jeff (jmh_pt), Jim (Buster), and Lisa (Max111).

 


Debra (CZip) Trip Report:

First, hands down, being at the WSOP was a dream come true. Many thanks to Chris for all that he does and for being such a poker host! Having made a quick look-around trip early in June, he had all the scoop on where/how to register, what to expect, where to eat, and was a great support. 

 

Never having been at the Rio for a prior WSOP I couldn't compare it with this new venue, but it sure seemed like Bally's/Paris aced it. Two casinos next to each other -- weird, right? Turns out they're just separated by a little walkway. It was super easy to get from the hotel room to the cages to register, to the ballrooms to play and grab a quick bite on the way. 

Note for the girls -- first time I've ever seen the men's room line going all the way down the corridor while we could just walk right into the ladies' room. Sweet!  When I went to get a player's card at Bally's I gave them my info, and the cashier said, "Oh, yes. We've got you in the system." Really? Are you sure you have the right person? "Yes. We have your name from when you played in Reno -- in 2003."  No kidding... They REALLY keep track of their players. What the heck was I doing in Reno in 2003? No idea.


There were two giant ballrooms, one in Paris and one in Bally's, with an unbelievable number of poker tables. Plus, there was a smaller room at Bally's where PokerGO and/or PokerNews hosted the televised feature tables. Sections in each room had color-coded signs above the tables with the table numbers. So it was easy to find your seat.
 

The night before the Monster Stack event Chris, his friend Jeff, myself and Joe M (LuckyAceHole on SimoneTeam poker site) had some great burgers for dinner, shared some good/bad/funny poker stories, checked out all the facilities and then tried (me) to get some sleep. I was nervous.  Never did I expect to win Chris's promotion - never.


Before I forget, super important side note:  CONGRATULATIONS TO JOE FOR CASHING IN THE MAIN EVENT!!!  ($15,000)


Okay. Long story short...in the Monster Stack on Day 1A there were over 3,000 players. I lasted until the very last regular hand of the day before they did about 10 minutes of some hand for hand play or something. I'm not sure what that was. Had a recent triple-up but was still kind of short stacked for a Day 2. So all-in with suited A-10, called by K-Q off, and got knocked out. That was after about 11 hours of play all at the same table.  At my table about 1% of the hands were just called pre-flop, up to 3-4% were raised once pre-flop, and ALL the rest were 3 and 4-bet pre-flop. At least half the table was regular Vegas grinders, and they came to play!  So nothing came easy, and I was pretty happy to last the full day.

Poker celebrities are way cooler than Hollywood types. I saw Greg Raymer, Daniel Negreanu, Maria Ho and Barry Greenstein -- all from a distance, of course. Except Maria. I saw her in the restroom, but the others were playing in a section off to the side in the larger buy-in events. Still, awesome!


I didn't re-enter the second Day 1B and instead played in some of the non-WSOP Deep Stack tournaments in the Paris ballroom offered at 2:00, 5:00 and 9:00 p.m. Had some success in the 9:00.  Won $1,009 and cashed out at 3:45 a.m. So tired but very happy!  If I ever get to the WSOP again, that's where I will spend a lot of time. The fields are pretty soft, much smaller and with smaller buy-ins, and the players are friendly.  After the Deep Stack win, I got a little sleep and left Vegas early the next day. It's been a long time since being there, and I had forgotten how much I love Las Vegas in the early morning.  It's just "normal" quiet, and the cool air as the sun is coming up is wonderful.  So after three incredible days, it was back to reality. The memories, though, will last forever. Thanks again, Chris!

Mark F (colt1912):  Mark played in Flight B of the $1500 Monster Stack event.  He played great and managed to make it to Day 2!  Unfortunately, he got knocked out just short of the $$$.  Great effort Mark!

Chris’ (SimoneTeam) Trip report:

Well I was excited WSOP poker in Vegas was going to be mostly “back to normal” and I was looking forward to seeing how the new venue (Bally’s/Paris) was going to work out.  I decided to take a quick trip during their kickoff weekend to check things out. 

I arrived on Sunday morning June 5th and hopped into the last flight of the $500 HouseWarming WSOP bracelet event.  It ended up having over 20,000 entries from the 4 starting flights!  Levels were 30 minutes and the starting stack was $50k in chips.  I won the very first hand and then none for 2 levels!  But I was still sitting at $48k in chips.  At the end of Level 3 I look down at KcQc.  I call a modest preflop raise and the flop comes Kxx with two clubs.  Top pair and the flush draw.  I proceed to lose $20k on this hand to AA…ugh.  3 hands later, I look down at the same KcQc and I win a nice $12k put pushing me back up to $40k in chips.  In Level 4 my KJ suited beats out pocket queens for a nice $15k pot and at the end of Level 5 I’m once again over the starting stack at $59k in chips.  Managed to build my stack up to about $70k over the next few levels, but ultimately the blinds started increasing a lot and I was starting to bleed.  5 hours in and I was forced to shove in position with A8 suited and ran into AJ and lost.  Out!

The next day I played the $600 Deepstack WSOP bracelet event.  There were 5715 players in this even.  It paid the top 858 finishers.  Starting with $30k in chips, I managed to build that up to $140k by the dinner break (7 hours in).  A couple hours later I was getting short.  I hit a good flop and shoved my last $45k in as a 3.5 to 1 favorite, but the other player sucked out on the river to knock me out.  I finished ~1100th which was getting close to the money but not close enough!  I headed home after this on Tuesday morning.

On Thursday night, June 9th it was time to head back to Las Vegas for the $1500 Monster Stack event.  I ran into Jeff H (jmh_pt) at the airport and we had a nice flight together.  I got checked into the hotel and then met up with SimoneTeam promo winner Debra P (CZip) to give her a tour of the different poker areas and also so that we could get registered for the Monster Stack event which started the next morning.  If you register the night before there is hardly anyone in line, but if you wait until the morning of these events you might be in line for an hour or two just to register.  We got registered and we were all set for the morning start…

Monster Stack Flight “A”:  This is a great tournament structure.  $50k in starting chips and 1 hour levels.  There were 6500 players (from FlightA + FlightB) and to make the money you would need to finish in the top 976.  1st place was almost $1,000,000. 

My table started out crazy aggressive.  In Level 1 I got beat up pretty good.  My AQ suited flopped top pair and I ended up getting bullied off a pretty big pot.  A few hands later, my AJ rivered 2 pair and I lost a pretty big hand.  I found myself down to around $30k in chips.  Then a stressful hand… I look down at KK.  Before it gets to me there is a raise to $800 and a re-raise to $2600.  I 4-bet to $8,500 and get called by the $2600 raiser.  The flop comes Q, 10, 6 with 2 spades.  He shoved all-in.  Ugh.  I tank then call.  He turns over KK and we chop!

A little later I was down to 20k, flopped a set and was back to 25k. A few hands later I'm UTG with AdKc and make it $1200. Aggressive player makes it $3500. Folds to me and I go all-in. He calls with KQ. Flop comes 7c8cQd. Turn is Qc.  River is the 5c.  Flush!  Just like I planned it!  Back up to a $57k stack at the 1st break (end of Level 2).  Too much action/stress….I should have showed up late!  Lol….

During Level 3 and 4 my AK vs AQ pushed me up to $71k.  On another hand I was in the big blind with J4 suited.  There was a min raise and 3 callers so I made the call.  Flop came 4, 4, 10.  I win the hand and I’m up to $85k.  At my table is Joseph Herbert:  https://www.wsop.com/players/profile/?playerid=89678   He won the 2020 online (covid) Main Event.  Ended Level 4 at $67k.  During Level 5, an unlikely win with 3 pair out of the big blind gets me to $85k.  I end Level 5 at $95k.  Heading in the right direction. 

During Level 6 my AK turned 2 pair and it pushed my stack up to $112k.   In Level 7, my A10 suited flopped top pair top kicker on a board of 10, 9, 3.  I pushed all the way to the river and the other player unfortunately caught his straight.  Chopped my stack down to $77k.  By the end of Level 7 my stack was down to $51k.  Blinds at this point were $600/$1200 with a $1200 big blind ante.  

During Level 8 (1 hour levels), the only memorable hand was my A10 suited losing to J9 offsuit for $20k.  When Level 8 was over my stack was down to $27k.  Made it to the 75 minute dinner break.    Getting low and in need of a good double up.  When Level 9 started I found my spot and managed to double up and knock out the 2020 Main Event winner pushing my stack back up to $52k.  After winning a few small pots it was up to $62k.   Halfway through Level 9 my Q10 suited rivered a straight pushing me up to $92,000 in chips, but shortly after I ran into AA and lost $40k.  At the end of Level 9, feeling the need to build some chips, I made an aggressive play.  I called a small raise with Q,9 suited.  The flop gave me 4 to the flush and I was first to act.  There was an Ace on the board.  I decided to shove my remaining $45k into a ~$20k put to put maximum pressure on the other player.  My hope was that he didn’t have an Ace (pair).  But even if he did, it should have been very hard for him to call with just 1 pair against my large post flop bet.  Well…he did have an Ace and he called.  I still had a ~36% chance of hitting my flush but it didn’t come and I was eliminated after 9 hours.  I felt pretty good about getting that deep, but of course it is never a great feeling when getting eliminated.

I played in the $800 WSOP Deepstack bracelet event, got reasonably deep, but did not cash.  I did manage a small cash in a nightly deepstack event (non-WSOP event) by coming in 11th out of ~200 players.  All-in-all it was a fun trip.  I like the new WSOP venue much better than the Rio, and I am looking forward to next year already!

We are kicking off a new multi-month promo for the Lake Tahoe WSOP circuit event taking place in mid/late October.  The winner of our promo will receive entry into two of the ~$400 WSOP event plus $350 to help with expenses.  If you would like to participate, you must be local and register.  Visit:  www.TheSimoneTeamPromo.com

We also have running every day/month our Tournament of Champions series.  On the last day of each month there is a $450 freeroll event.  In order to participate, you must win one of the Nightly 7pm, 8pm, or 9pm TOC Qualifier events (no password needed).  For all the details, CLICK HERE

Hope to see you all on the virtual felt! 

-Chris