Thoughts From The First Two Weeks Of The WSOP

I just can't seem to get my body clock worked out.

Somehow on East Coast time, waking up at 6 AM nearly every morning and every day I flip-flop between it feeling like I've been in Vegas for a few days or a few months. 

I checked the calendar this morning and even though I've lost all sense of what day of the week it is, the numbers don't lie, I've been in Vegas for 19 days.

I've spent more or less two weeks covering the opening events of this year's World Series of Poker, which have provided me some unforgettable memories and given me tons of things to think about during my last few off days...

"One of these guys is going to win a bracelet..."

Not to dismiss any other tournament series or major tournament victory, but there is just something about a WSOP bracelet. An allure. A historical value. A magical tension at every final table that I've yet to experience. 

I've watched dozens if not a hundred players claim Borgata or Parx titles over the last year. Even a few players win World Poker Tour Championships. Those are all tremendous accomplishments and things that, as a player, I could likely never achieve. 

But, while watching those tournaments play out, I've never had a chill roll up my spine like the one that did when I was covering the final table of the opening 'Casino Employees' event last week. 

When play got heads up, I turned to my partner Kevin Troilo and said, "One of these guys is going to win a bracelet." 

I don't think either of us realized the extent of the moment until I reminded us that a bracelet was up for grabs. That one of these guys was going to win potentially the most prized trophy in poker. 

East Coast Bias

Now, I'll never have an actual bias when it comes to covering tournaments. I've joked in the past that I "don't really care who wins". That's a lie, I do. But I care way more about the quality of a given event's coverage over the individual players competing for the title. 

With that being said though, I'm always going to have an East Coast bias. Sports teams, New York Giants, New Jersey Devils, New York Knicks. Food, other than Taco Bell of course, pizza. Seaside Heights Boardwalk pizza to be exact. 

In poker, my bias isn't that I root for players from the East Coast, but that I want to see the region as a whole succeed. Mainly because the outpour of support and camaraderie when a player makes a deep run is unlike anything else I've experienced before.  

Maybe this is the case in other regions that I'm just not privy too. But, I truly think that the majority of the East Coast player pool has a mutual interest to see each other succeed and I'm honored to be considered a part of that community. 

No More No-Limit

In about a week's time I'll have reached the one year mark of my tournament reporting/blogging career. In that time, I can honestly say I can count the non No-Limit Hold'em hands that I've written up on both my hands.

Not that many mixed events are offered or covered where I work, so when the WSOP schedule came out, I was interested if I was going to get an opportunity to cover some mixed game events. 

The first two weeks have been solely No-Limit, but the next two weeks, starting today, will likely be some of the more interesting and challenging reporting I've ever done and I can't wait. 

This afternoon I'll start covering the $10,000 Omaha Hi-Low 8B Championship. I'll work that event from start to finish and then work the opening day of a $1,500 PLO event.

A few days off and I'm back on the mixed game wagon, covering the $1,500 2-7 Triple Draw and then the $1,500 10 Game Mix events in their entirety. 

Right now, I'm super excited to take on some mixed games. Talk to me in two weeks though and I'll probably be begging for players to have two hole cards again. 

Do Anything Other Than Poker On Your Off Days

If you follow me on twitter, you know that this past weekend I had a few off days. During those off days, I played a total of about 30 minutes of poker. That was a Friday night sit & go that somehow turned into an hour long massage. 

 I woke up the next morning and I realized that I'm in Las Vegas, a city that literally has EVERYTHING. With a friend of a friend, I spent most of Saturday exploring and seeing a lot of places that your normal tourist wouldn't. 

Over the next few weeks I might do some individual blog posts about some of the places I explored, so I don't want to spoil those places just yet. But, if I have any advice for anyone that is in or coming to Vegas before the series ends, don't spend your off days in a poker room or casino. 

Get out, explore and if you want some company, don't be afraid to ask because I am definitely up for a Vegas adventure. 

I'll be doing a few of these throughout the rest of my World Series of Poker stint so if you have any ideas or topics that you might want addressed, let me know.