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Posted by on Dec 24, 2016 in Blog, Essays, Las Vegas | 12 comments

Is the Stations Casinos’ Monthly “Drawing” Rigged?

 

red-rock-casino

 

Are the monthly drawings held at a Stations Casino rigged in favor of VIPs?

That’s my suspicion following a highly-unlikely series of events that happened last night at the Red Rock giveaway.  Perhaps readers with backgrounds in mathematics and probability might chime in and render their opinions.

Stations Casinos are very generous with giveaways.  Several enticing promotions are offered — including weekly football contests, free slot and video poker play, extra-points multipliers, discounts on food and entertainment, as well as monthly “drawings” for prize money.  I believe that all of the Stations Casinos participate in these same promotions.  However, I tend to play mostly at Red Rock Casino in Summerlin more than the rest, because it’s closest to my home.

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Posted by on Nov 17, 2016 in Blog, Essays, Las Vegas, Restaurant Reviews | 6 comments

Austin’s Steakhouse (Texas Station): Culinary Crime Scene

 

ts_dining_austins-new

 

About the only affirmative thing that can be said for Austin’s Steakhouse is — they’re consistent.  From start to finish, every last detail about our most recent visit and meal was bad.  Shockingly awful.  I’ll address these numerous shortfalls of what’s considered the premier restaurant located inside the Texas Station Casino in this blistering review:

 

One of the perks of betting lots of sports is generating a large amount of free casino comp dollars.

Over the past eight months, Marieta and I have been afforded the unique opportunity to pretty much wolf our way through the entire menu of dining options at the various Stations-owned casinos, located around town.  This includes a couple of dozen quite good restaurants scattered throughout the Las Vegas valley — inside Red Rock, Green Valley Ranch, Palace Station, Santa Fe, Fiesta Henderson, Fiesta Rancho, Sunset Station, and most recently, The Palms (which Stations recently acquired).

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Posted by on May 31, 2016 in Blog, Essays, General Poker, Las Vegas, Personal, World Series of Poker | 4 comments

Shuffling Up at the 2016 World Series of Poker

 

wsop-empty-tables

 

Another World Series of Poker begins tomorrow.

Out of the 47 series which have taken place since the first small gathering at the old Binion’s Horseshoe back in 1970, I’ve attended about half of them — at least in some capacity as either a player, writer, or executive.  My first WSOP was in 1985.

For the past 15 years, I’ve worked under the official title of “Media Director,” which has in recent years become something of a nom de plume.  Let’s face it.  The media can’t be directed.  The last thing I have is any control over the media.  It’s like herding cats.

I think most of us would agree this is a transitional time for poker, as well as for the WSOP.  Then again, the game is always in a state of transition.  Everything’s changing constantly.  No two years, nor two series, nor two tournaments are ever comparable.

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Posted by on May 14, 2016 in Blog, Essays, Personal, Rants and Raves, Sports Betting | 2 comments

This Week in Major League Baseball (Betting)

 

IMAG0674 (1) - Edited

 

I’m not what you’d call a baseball fan.  Hell, I don’t even like baseball.

However, I do bet on baseball games.  I bet on lots of baseball games.

Having no rooting interest in any of the major league teams — nor any desire to watch games, either in person or on television — this somehow keeps me on a much more even keel emotionally than watching pro football, which for me is a severe mental and emotional strain.  Yes, I’ll admit to having serious difficulty dealing with adversity when betting on football.  That’s because so much of the final outcome depends on motivation and is influenced by mistakes…a fumble here, an interception there.  By comparison, I have much less of a “tilt factor” when betting on baseball games, because fundamentally it’s a sport predicated on two things — (1) statistics and (2) percentages.  Remaining dispassionate about baseball comes easy because I don’t give a shit about any of the teams, except that I usually cheer against any team from New York, Boston, or Los Angeles.  I simply make my wagers, then check the final scores at the end of the night.  If only the rest of life were that simple.

That said, this week has been an emotional and financial roller coaster.  For the first time, I’ve decided to chronicle my wins and losses over several days.  Hopefully, those of you who bet on sports will enjoy the ride.

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Posted by on May 3, 2016 in Blog, Essays, Las Vegas, Personal, Sports Betting | 6 comments

Ghosts of Gambling Past

 

Nolan Dalla 1967 - Edited

 

Yes, that’s really me.  Age 5.  1967.

I can’t say where and when exactly my infatuation with games of skill and chance first began, but it probably happened inside the crib.  That wasn’t a baby rattler I was shaking.  It was a pair of dice.

This baby needs a new pair of shoes.  Seven out.  Line away.

From my earliest childhood memories, I just sort of always knew the standard rules on how to play poker.  I can’t even recall who it was exactly that taught me this hand beats that hand.  Seven-Card Stud, High and Low Chicago, Mexican Sweat, and of course, Five-Card Draw weren’t just friendly card games played for nickels and dimes.  To me, they were genetic markers, part of my DNA.

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