Back in action!

Sep 18, 2006 4:14 AM

The exhaustion of playing so many events in the World Series of Poker has finally worn off and it’s time to get back into the game!

But first, just a few comments in the wake of the World Series, which overall I thought was a tremendous event that Harrah’s should feel proud to have produced.

As it is currently set-up, the WSOP is a marathon, especially if you plan to play in many of the events. Maybe the schedule could be trimmed back to 30 days of events — this year there seemed to be an inordinate number of "smaller" tourneys.

The TV coverage from ESPN was selective and heavily-weighted toward featuring the "usual" professionals and self-proclaimed celebrities.

Because there are so many new and promising players entering the game every year, perhaps more time can be devoted to featuring these players. There are some terrific stories just waiting to be told.

As I’m writing this I’m preparing to head to Lake Tahoe for the featured event at the WSOP Circuit event at Harrah’s and Harvey’s at the lake.

I always look forward to playing in such a breath-taking setting. I know many other players have traveled to the East Coast for the World Poker Tour event at the Borgata, but I like the intimate, friendly atmosphere of the Tahoe casinos.

I finished ninth in the tournament last year so next week, hopefully, I’ll have some good news to report from Tahoe!

A few weeks ago, I played in the Legends tournament at the Bicycle Casino in Los Angeles. My final hand was typical for many of the hands I had this year.

I had pocket aces and was all-in against an opponent who turned over pocket 10s. When the flop came ace-king-10, I thought I was in pretty good shape. But the turn and river came runner spades giving my opponent the winning spade flush.

What can you do? When you have a hand that should win 70-80 percent of the time and loses, you just have to shake your head and move on.

That’s worth keeping in mind: Don’t become discouraged, just keep playing your game and the correct math will eventually win out.

That philosophy paid off for Vanessa Rousso, an up-and-coming poker player I mentioned in this column during the World Series last month.

Vanessa is a promising player who was tripped up with a couple of bad beats — which happen to all of us — but always came back firing.

Well, she hit the target last week in the final World Poker Tour event preceding the WPT championship, at the Borgata Open. Vanessa topped a field of 317 players to win a $5,000 buy-in, no limit hold’em event, which was worth a cool $285,450.

In the process of winning, Vanessa outlasted one of the local favorites, "Johnny Bax" Josephy, a top Internet pro and former Wall Street broker from Syosset, New York.

Great job, Vanessa!

For poker players who also enjoy the football season, check out the Monday night action at the Gold Coast for its Football High Hand Frenzy. All players competing in one of their "live action" games will have a chance to win $100 at the end of the first three quarters and $200 for the final quarter.

Also coming soon at the Gold Coast is Sunday Football Fantastic Fours, in which four-of-a-kind high hand bonuses will pay double, up to $599, during Sunday’s NFL games. Check with poker manager, Tagg, for details.

Finally, I’ve received many requests lately to hold more poker seminars like we held at The Venetian and Green Valley Ranch.

We are seeking to put together a string of seminars that will feature playing in live tournaments as well as cash games. Casinos on our list include the Palms, Las Vegas Hilton and Red Rock Canyon.

We’ll report when we have some firm dates established.