High Stakes Omaha Games in Las Vegas

Since the inception of the World Series of Poker 40 years ago, one of the biggest attractions wasn’t the tournament series itself but the side games that occurred after people had busted out of their tournaments. All too often the real sharks of Las Vegas would be waiting in the juicy side games where the home game heroes would end up after their tournament was finished. All too often the result was that the sharks cleaned the tourists out and fattened their bankrolls for the rest of the year.

Times are a little different in Las Vegas 40 years later as poker is offered at just about every major casino in town. The idea of sharks waiting at every cash game is something of the past since so many casual tourists in town have some experience playing poker and don’t mind sitting down at the games when they are out gambling. This means that the fields for the small stakes tables, be it Limit Hold’em, No Limit Texas Hold’em or Pot Limit Omaha are so big that good poker players should do well if they can avoid the coolers and bad beats no matter where they play.

More often than not, the biggest game in a poker room is Pot Limit Omaha. Because of the drawing nature of the game, pots are always bigger in PLO games than they are for No Limit Hold’em. When a huge whale comes in to town (someone with ridiculous amounts of money to burn) and wants big poker action, they’re playing Pot Limit Omaha. As famed rounder Sammy Farha was quoted as saying, “If No Limit Texas Hold’em is the Cadillac of poker, then Pot Limit Omaha is the Porsche.”

The days of juicy side cash games at the World Series of Poker aren’t too removed as the venue has changed to the swankier and bigger poker room at the Rio in Las Vegas. With the WSOP in town, the high rollers are constantly on the lookout for a big game to prove their skills in addition to taking home big profits. According to more than one source, one of the biggest games for Pot Limit Omaha is currently running daily at the Rio in the form of a 25-25-50 game. That means that there’s two small blinds of $25 and one big blind of $50 in a 9-handed format. To say this is an action packed game would be the littlest complement one could bestow on the game.

Regular players in that game include popular pro David “Devilfish” Ulliot and other internet PLO superstars such as DJ Sensei, Eric Liu, Harrington25 (not Dan Harrington) and colson10 have been spotted at the main game at the Rio. Many in that main game, as evidenced by recent posts in their blogs, have said that the game isn’t juicy at all and is similar to their regular games online. The idea for them was finding juicy games against lesser competition while in Las Vegas. Omaha does seem to be taking off in Las Vegas this summer as the game is more widespread than it has been in recent memory.

According to reports, the aforementioned Rio has been running 25-25-50 PLO every day and if requested, they have started up a 50-100-200 game during peak gambling hours in Sin City. Also at the Rio was a half 100-200 PLO and half 100-200-400 No Limit Hold’em game with antes which was running regularly through the WSOP week. Finally, the Rio has been known to run a 75-150 Pot Limit Omaha 8 or Better game and players are encouraged to call in to the Rio poker room to request a seat at any of the big games.

Other hotels in Vegas are also running Pot Limit Omaha, including some of the smallest stakes seen for poker in Vegas casinos for players looking to learn the game live. At the Excalibur Hotel, they are offering up a regular $0.50-$1 Pot Limit Omaha game at their electronic PokerPro table which seems perfectly suited for the game to keep it moving quickly, as most dealt Omaha games run quite slow. Regular PLO games are known to be going at both Caesars Palace and Bellagio.

If you’re in Las Vegas this summer during the WSOP event season and are looking to get in on the action, there’s plenty of mega-high limit games at the Rio, in addition to games at Caesars. For those of you with oil company ownership money, you can always get in on the mixed game action at Bobby’s Room at Bellagio which requires a minimum $20,000 buy-in. If you win in that game, you just might be able to buy that Porsche Sammy Farha was talking about.

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One Comment

John Biddle

Best game going. Great article! Thanks for posting it.

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