I love this place. It's no Vegas in terms of places to play or game selection but it's got plenty of what I need and it doesn't have Vegas prices or traffic. The people are about as friendly as on the Gulf Coast too.
I had hoped for 1/4/8/8 spread limit games like they spread at the Gulf Coast casinos but mostly here it's 4/8 with occasional 3/6 and 10/20 games. I heard somebody spreads a 2/4 game.
I'm planning to mostly stick with the Gold Strike's 3/6 game. I'm doing nearly as well in that as I ever do in the 1/4/8/8 games in Gulfport. I will also always have a soft spot for that casino because yesterday I was playing when somebody on the other table playing at the time hit the bad beat jackpot. They give everybody in the room who was in a hand at the time a players share and mine came to $352 and change. Not bad for just being in the right place at the right time.
I'm playing my normal game and not trying to force any action and it's working. The only time I've deviated is when the table has gotten down to 6 handed, then I loosened up a bit and got much more aggressive. Much to the consternation of the other players I have to add. I know those looks, they are the ones I imagine I give the maniacs at the table. I spent some simulator time just for that eventuality and it worked just as I hoped it would. A little luck was involved of course because when my raises or re-raises didn't fold up the table I managed to hit enough of the flop to take the pot enough of the time to get respect for my raises.
In general I'm probably running around 20-25% flops seen, still in my mind fairly loose but mostly I'm just getting cards to play...sometimes. The one guy who I'm almost positive is a pro kept trying to push me off pots but would get out of the way when I'd push back. I got him off at least one hand where he almost HAD to have me beat but he'd been folding when I'd re-raise him and then bet out on the next street so I just went with it to see what would happen even though I'd missed the flop.
Mostly I'm just relieved to see my game working and to feel like I'm playing well and with confidence. It has also helped that the games have been on the loose-passive side. Most of the raising came from either me or the guy I suspect is a pro and mostly he and I seemed to be trying to stay out of each other's way. I know I was not playing anything close to a marginal hand if he was already in even though he could be very creative in what he'd play or raise, much more so that I am at this point. My game is still very straightforward and that's why I don't quite understand why nobody, or almost nobody seems to notice. I know I should mix it up more but it's working like this so I hesitate to change up and do anything that is slightly less comfortable and more risky. I do wonder if I am maximizing my winnings. I think I've got a handle on minimizing my losses thankfully so maximizing winnings is next. I think I did pretty well at that though.
All in all I'm a happy camper. I've made my expenses for the trip provided I don't have any really bad sessions now. It feels so good to have the bear off my back and feel good about poker again. I know I have a long way to go. I've not played any tournaments this trip as yet because nothing has really looked appealing so far. There's a lot to be said for cash game play though...at least it can more steadily pay the bills.