There was one 30-60 hand where I realized that a top notch pro was likely doing this and that I could take the pot with one more bet on the river, where I might otherwise have been tempted to check and concede. It was a TT vs QQ situation with AK on board by the turn. I bet the turn and my heart sunk as he called, but then I realized that he might fold for one more bet on the river, as I read him for QQ or JJ. I bet the river, and my opponent thought for a long time, and then his QQ turned over as it went into the muck.
So, the play can have its problems, but the idea is to make it costly for your opponent to bluff you. I touched on related issues in my r.g.p. post "HOLDEM: Defensive calling on the flop".
I occasionally make this call-on-turn-with-made-hand-with-intention-of-folding-on-river play myself, but not often.
On this subject do you have any predetermined frequency of betting AK unimproved on the river while facing an opponent who check called all the way.(He can also play this way a draw). For avoiding additional noise (small pot,...) you are in early position and he is the BB. Besides there is no point in betting for value against this opponent. You bet because you think he might try to exploit you by folding the river when you bet thinking you will only bet your pairs.
Conversely, a simple EV study shows that if you have a pair and you are sure to be against an ace or a bigger pair and you face a bet on the river you can safely fold a small percentage of the time while keeping him obliged to check his aces and bet his pairs to maximize his ev. This slight benefit can be balanced though by the fact he might not have those hands. Obviously you don't favor a more brutal exploitation although it might be worthy against some opponents. I would personally do these brutal river exploitations only in small heads-up pots against the right agressive but untricky opponent.
Yes, I have a predetermined frequency of betting AK on the river against an opponent who check-called the whole way: never. Actually, that's not quite true. Occasionally I value bet AK high, and occasionally I bluff bet it, but it's not a frequency thing, but rather a situation thing.
Basically, you should bet your best hands (for value) and your worst hands (for bluffs.) AK almost always falls in the middle, into the checking hands.
"I bet the river, and my opponent thought for a long time, and then his QQ turned over as it went into the muck."
There's another lesson to be learned here. It is simply that you should never show your hand in these situations. When someone does this they are telling you that they can (and do) make tough laydowns. If this is a person you occasionally play against, remember this and use it against them in the future.
This is an analysis of a hand I posted a few weeks ago. I have reprinted the basic action of the hand first....
I am in a very loose medium aggressive game. I get pocket 99 in the cutoff and limp 4th into the pot... button limps, SB folds, BB raises. [I put BB on an overpair during this hand] ... Everyone calls and we take the flop 6 handed. [12 SB in the pot]
Flop comes 8d 7h 4c. BB bets and all call to me, I raise ... BB reraises and everyone calls to the loose player on my right, who caps it. I call and everyone calls, still 6 players. [36 sb / 18 BB in the pot]
The turn brings the 6h, giving me an open-ender and also putting a flush draw on board. BB checks and everyone checks to the guy on my right, who bets.
Pre-flop: my decision not to raise with pocket nines was made because I thought it was a borderline decision, and I had been losing. There are valid arguements for both calling and raising, but If I had raised, I do not think it really would have made much of a difference, either in the way the hand played, my image, or mathematically. Therefore I will not be analyzing my decision pre-flop.
On the flop: I thought my raise in the cutoff with an overpair was pretty clear cut, but some on the forum might see it differently. Then the BB reraises and it gets capped by the player to my right, whose standards for capping are loose. The way I saw it, I would be getting 17:1 to make this call, because I did not expect anyone to fold here. It is a 22:1 shot of hitting a set on the next card. With five opponents and two more betting rounds, the implied odds should be more than adequate to cover this plus more. The pot is so big, the chance of everyone folding on the turn is practically nil in this game. I fully expect to make at LEAST five more BB if I hit my hand, most likely though I will make 6-8 more BB the way this game has been playing....
In addition, I have a backdoor straight draw. At the time I was thinking that the backdoor straight possibilities about canceled out the chances of hitting my set and still losing. I may have been mistaken about this though, there were a lot of players in the hand and if someone had JT there is no doubt they would have played it before the flop. One counterpoint here would be that if I hit a set and that made someone a straight, I would still have ten outs to a full house, which I would likely get a lot of action on. Again, it was probably pretty close between calling and folding, even if folding was slightly the better choice.
And finally, there was still some chance, albeit a small one, that I might have the best hand.. Although I was pretty certain that the BB had an overpair, I don't know him that well, maybe he is more of a maniac than I think.. Add in the fact that it could not get raised again, and I thought it would be borderline or maybe slightly positive EV to call. As it turns out, in hindsight I may have done slightly better by folding. But if I was making a mistake, it could not have been a very large mistake either way. Anyway, I made the call, and on to the turn we went.
The primary analysis on this hand is the turn action...
the turn is where it gets interesting. I had three choices when it came to me, call, raise, or fold. Remember, the board is 4678 with two hearts and I have an open-ended straight draw. All have checked to the dude on my right, the flop capper, who bet. There were 36 SB or 18 BB in the pot after the flop. Now there is a bet to me, giving me 19:1 to call, or 19:2 to raise. I hope we can all agree that folding is not an option at this point in the hand....
so if I call, I am getting 19:1 to draw to a possible ten outs, but not all my outs are clean. A nine gives me a set, but will almost certainly give someone a straight, so I will not count the nines as outs at all. Two of my eight str8 cards are hearts, so I may only have six outs there instead of eight. Also, if I just call, remember, I put the BB on a bigger pocket pair than nines, so there will be no chance of my hand being the best hand if he remains in the pot, or at least that's what I am assuming.... For the sake of arguement, I will estimate that two of the four remaining players will call the turn bet, there is definitely a heart flush draw against me, and there will not be a raise. So if I call, I am drawing to six outs (a 6.8:1 shot) at 21:1 pot odds. River bets are not included, but would increase my EV slightly.
EV = 6/46 x 21 BB - 40/46 x 1 BB = 2.73 - 0.87 = 1.86 BB
But if I raise, the situation changes.
First off, my raise was designed to get the player with the probable overpair OUT of the pot. This player is fairly tight and can certainly fold a hand when he knows he is beat. I am going to assign him a 50% chance of folding to a raise. If he does in fact fold, I suspected that I would have a very good chance of having the best hand, which was the primary reason I raised. Assuming he folds, I will assign myself an arbitrary 40% chance of having the best hand and having it hold up. So by raising, I will win the pot 20% of the time (by both the overpair folding and my hand standing up, 50%x40%=20%).
A secondary reason I raised was to get weak draws out of the pot that might draw out on me when I would otherwise have won the pot. Let's assume that the only draw that stays in is a flush draw.
Also, there is some chance, albeit very small, that EVERYONE might fold and I win the pot outright. Let's assign this a 1% chance.
Even if I am called, I still have six cleans outs to a probable winner with a straight. That will occur 6 out of 46 times, or 13% of the time. (There is a small chance someone might be playing J9 and made a bigger straight if the ten hits. I will offset this possibility with the small possibility of my hitting a nine for a set and that being the winner, in other words no one having a five or ten).
I am going to assume that my raise will be called by the bettor, and that there is a flush draw out there who will cold call the raise. That will make a total of 24 BB in the pot. I am not going to figure river bets into the equation. (Ignoring implied odds on the river should about cancel out my ignoring the possibility of getting reraised on the turn, so that possibility will not be considered either).
Finally, the remaining possibilities equal 66%, let's assume that those include all scenarios where I do NOT win the pot.
So the equation goes like this:
20% x 24 BB + 1% x 24 BB + 13% x 24 BB - 66% x 2 BB = 4.8 + 0.24 + 3.12 - 1.32 = 6.84 BB.
So you can see by raising instead of calling, I have increased my EV by almost five big bets:
6.84 - 1.86 = 4.98
This is a case where getting someone with a better hand to fold, thus increasing your chances of winning the pot, makes a BIG difference on your overall EV. It is also a case where calling is OK, but raising is a MUCH better play. The chances of my making my draw did not change, but winning the pot an additional 21% of the time makes a HUGE difference in my EV.
dave in cali
Very nice post. Yes, knocking out the best hand when you have the 2nd best hand will tend to dominate EV calculations.
But since I disagree with all your other posts ...
Knocking out the BB should have been the first thing going through your mind and calculating your draw an unnecessary distant 2nd. This is important not just because of this EV calculation but also because it represents a much healthier "winning" attitude that so many aspiring young players seem to NOT have. You should have mentioned that the capper probably does NOT have you beat since he flat called the flop the first time when 2-betting was the best option if he had very much.
Hi all, I was wondering if any of the people who tutor poker on this board are willing to review my hand histories from a few sessions and how much would they charge?
If you goal is playing High-Limit at professional level then I charge $500 per every "Starting" hand in TH with detailed explanation how to play before the flop and taking that hand all the way down to the River. (this as a package only)
Professional detailing in all situations. It will be like you'll be playing all your hands in advance and practicing over and over until you know all the possible hands down cold.
Given your specialty and fees, perhaps you might want to consider opening an advanced institution for playing in the high limit poker games. Similarly what Mike Caro did several years before - Mike Caro University of Poker - but on a more advanced level. Just make sure that you quote yourself planty so as to promote originality, consistency and superiority in the subject.
All answers seem to rest on forming an institution and then on its ruthless and tireless promotion. Once you do that, seemingly, recognition, followers and money will inexhaustibly flow. The next natural step in linear progression would be setting up cruises, at first once a year, then semiannually, quarterly, and bi-monthly.
Sky is the limit!
Post some hands that you have questions about in a readable form on the appropriate forum (small/medium/high holdem or other poker games).
And it is free.
I was curious about how other poker players get ready before they play poker. Myself, I usually go over S & M hand rankings and go over a few odds that I have written down. I also may get a deck of cards and deal myself a few hands and decide how I will play them before the flop, after the flop, and so on. What things do some of the pros do or have done. all suggestions welcomed
Whether you choose to do this now or at a later time is entirely up to you.....
Recall a specific past session in which you played very well. The one when you were reeeeeaaaaaalllllly in the zone: highly confident, energized, alert, and enjoying yourself. Everything just seemed to flow for you that day, remember?
As the memory of this session begins to come back to you, step into it and re-live it as if it were happening right NOW as you do see what you saw, hear what you heard and feel what you felt during that great session.
As you feel these good feelings peak inside you, see yourself in your next session feeling this way. How would you sit like if you felt this way? How would you breath like if you felt this way? Notice your facial expressions. And as you do, step into that you in that future session fully and completely with these feelings inside you.
Feeling these feelings get even stronger, notice all kinds of hands being dealt to you. Some good, some bad, some mediocre. And feel satisfied with the fact that you continue to feel these feelings regardless of what cards you're being dealt.
Think about all of the good scenarios and bad scenarios that you could be facing as you feel these feelings double in intensity. Imagine the worst bad beats and as you do feel these good feelings quadruple inside of you as you feel the satisfaction of using the bad beats to make you feel even more confident, alert, and energized!
Sounds like it's straight from Anthony Robbins' PERSONAL POWER. Good Advice!
I walk across a busy four lane street without looking for traffic. If I make it, I am ready to play HE!
No call to be cinical here. Dice asked for a friently advice; ostensibly he could use one.
Well what I do really wouldn't help him much. If it's day time I make sure I feel okay. At night I watch street lights. If more than two turn off on the drive, I go back home. If it's dusk, I compare lights turning off with lights turning on, and make a comparison. If more turn off than on, I go back home.
This isn't advice I would give to someone. But I do think you have to be prepared for some ups and downs, and the stomach to handle the swings?
Your attitude is improving.
Good going, man! Don't look back.
It goes without saying that you'll bring the 'sound' game knowledge with you when approaching the poker game of your choice. That is technical preparation.
However, the mental preparation (i.e., your emotions, sentiments, game focus, response to adversities, etc.)is spearate from your game (technical) skills.
In my opinion, one needs to be in the right (i.e., positive) and, yes, well rested frame of mind before joining any game, perhaps most of all a game of poker. That is, you need to free your mind of any mental drag/distraction which occurred before, or perhaps may occur during the game. Unless freed from distructions, you will likely become too edgy at the table and therefore not fully focused on the game. It should therefore surprise no one as to why some players are always looking to distuct and/or aggrevate the others in order to crack their play. Not ethical, but does happen steadily.
My post agrees mostly with Tommy. I will usually drift in and out of sleep for about an hour before the game, with the Rounders score playing on my stereo. While I am semi-conscious I will try to get into a positive mindset by imagining winning well-played, not monster, hands. I will visualize over and over how I play my hand. But after I get up, if I am sleepy at all I will spray water on my face and go outside and just breathe the cool night air for a while. I go into most of my games relaxed and focused. As far as reviewing poker knowledge or practicing, I just assume I already have the information- but this relaxed focus, like taking a high school test, allows the solutions to easily come to you. Its kind of like how many great athletes sleep before a game- rest while you can, and when play starts you can channel your energy. If you are like most people, keeping focus for 5 or 6 hours is no easy task- so I think in-depth pre-game analysis will make you lose focus on the hands that don't conform to your thoughts, and you may tire faster. A few general goals can suffice.
i bought this book in vegas last week cause it was just $12.95. i havent even opened it. im not really at the basic level anymore, more on the cusp between beginner obsessed with hold em and intermediate player who can regularly beat the local 4-8. anyone want to share some thoughts on the book? i want to just throw it in the trash if that's where it belongs. i made the mistake of buying the Warren book Winner's Guide to Hold 'Em and i did have to end up using that for kindling when i found out that it's full of bad charts and dumb advice. so anyone read this book Serious Poker?
thanks in advance. this page is the best.
I have the book. What part of the book did you not like?
This is probably one of those questions that only I can answer in due time. Unless someone has psychic abilities, that is.
I'm one of the few people I know who simply CANNOT win in a live club/casino game. EVERY time I visited AC or the Rounders club in jersey I'd come out with empty pockets. And I really DON'T think I'm a bad player. I've been quite successful in online and home games. I know all my required material, I've read and STUDIED at least 5-6 different hold'em books, including the major Sklansky's and Malmuths. I know all my odds, I study people inbetween hands. I understand most of the subtle concepts behind poker. I was a consitent winner at 3-6 heads-up AND ring games on Paradise..
So what the hell goes wrong every time I play live? I simply can't figure it out. Let me give you a stupid example of the last time I played at Rounders.. I'm early position with QQ, table has been pretty loose-aggressive up to this point. I raise hoping to knock some people out, almost nobody falls for it, and 6 of us see the flop, which is K-x-x 2tone (2suited). I am the first to go so I bet it out. To my surprise I get 4 callers AND a late-position raise. I think to myself.. if it was just me VS the raiser I'd probably call him to the river, figuring maybe he's on the flush draw. But there's FOUR other callers in the hand, so I make the "correct" play and fold my queens. Turn is a rag, river is a rag. Flush does not make it. It's checked around the river and, amazingly, POCKET 9s win the large pot with a "pair of 9s".
This is an extreme example, I realize. But shit like this always seems to happen when I play live games, and it always drains my bankroll over the long run. I seem to never make any draws... and honestly I can't even remember the last time I was *ON* a draw in a live game.. I fold quite alot and I play premium hands mostly, with lots of regard to position. And it seems I almost always either fold winners, or play "premium" losers. In short, I just CANNOT win in a live game. And that really hampers my outlook and my self-respect.
Oh and if anyone suggests loosening up my starting hands.. I tried that every now and then.. it only costs me more in the long run, cause I seem to NEVER hit the flop.
I'll take some suggestions.
Haven't looked at the other posts yet - but maybe some of the other players have you pegged as a weak player who will dump a good hand if the conditions are right. You probably have to losen up "late" on the button and cut off I often play coupled cards late for a lot of reasons - if you are only playing premium hands you are easy to play against so try to mix it up and and be more creative.
I think everyone is missing your original point. You WIN on the internet, and LOSE in live games at the card clubs. I have this same problem, and it pisses me off. I do not claim to be the best player in the world, but there is a drastic difference between my results on the internet, and my results in the live games. Some of it might have to do with the large rake at our card club in Minnesota. I have also thought maybe I have a major tell, but after watching the people I play against at the clubs, I don't think that is the answer. Why do I win on the internet, and lose at the card club?
Slay I read most of the posts but not all, but I think many are missing an obvious possibility.
Yes maybe you did have the odds to draw to a set but it was close and you weren't giving up a lot by folding. Betting into this large field is (I think) a mistake with the overcard there but this is only one hand. (if you checked they probably would have put you on KK and given you a free card).
I think there's a real possibility you have just had some bad luck and haven't had enough hours to accurately measure your results playing live. Try putting in 200 hours of low variance poker and I bet you come out a winner.
Zee is right about that hand: you're getting 20:1 (probably 24:1) to snag a Queen on the turn (23:1); and that's assuming you KNOW one of them has a King and won't fold it AND will bet the turn. Brain-dead call. And if its worth one bet to call it is often worth one more bet to raise especially if the raiser doesn't need a King to raise or if a caller with a weak King may fold.
But back to your question. Yes, I'm psychotic ..err.. whatever. You project a lot of tells when paranoid about your hand and the other players, even the weak ones, go into a frenzy against YOU knowing you'll make a lot of bad laydowns; and they know when you've got the real goods and get out.
Jones, in WLLHE, says to look at your cards and just remember what you have. He also says to look at your cards in certain situations, but doesn't give examples of when or why. In my home game i will pretend to look at my cards when i have the nuts and know that they have a good hand (i have quads against their full house). I'll also stare at the board pretending to figure out what they have even though i already know. this seems to give them the feeling of being in control and they will throw in an extra raise so i get a couple more bets. i once got someone to reraise me many times without the nuts until i felt bad and just turned my cards over and called. I know i look at my cards for advertising value in the casino - but am not quite sure when it is a good idea against either good or bad players. I think i do the same thing as i do in the home game - make the other players think i'm unsure of my hand so they'll try to bet me out. What do others think? When do others players look at their cards and for what reasons, and against what types of players. what do people think if someone does look at their cards when they usually don't or what to do when players use this tactic too often?
My take on all this is that it usually slows the game down and is for the most part useless. That is not to say that on rare occasions a bit of an act might not be called for, but that as a general rule the actor is deceiving himself into thinking the others are that naive or that he is that good an actor.
If you have an expected win in the game your goal should be to get as many hands played as you can, not coffeehouse 'til the cows (or sheep) come home.
I agree with Abdul that sometimes the acting can cost you more than help you. If it consistently fools your home game players, go ahead. I find the best path depends on your game. In my weak home game, they buy it every time even though my acting is blatant. In my tougher home game, I don't play any psychology or acting with them- I figure if they can't read me, they have to read my bets, which they do not do well.
"In my weak home game, they buy it every time even though my acting is blatant."
I suspect that in this game they would be calling you even without the act, and regardless of whether they bought it or not.
LL holdem game last night (4-8). I was only at the table for 10 minutes. Seated accross from was an obviously drunk lady in #10 seat, who was playing every hand and raising most of them. She was in a hand with a young guy in #9 seat, fairly good player, who had the biggest stack of chips by far on the table.
Here is what bothered me. On the turn, she bet by tossing out 2 red chips. #9 called. Dealer took 4 white chips from the pot and gave it to her as change. I looked at #9 to see if he noticed anything, but he was just looking at the board. River card, she bets again with 2 red chips. Dealer gave her 4 white again in change! #9 raises, she tosses in 2 red to call, and this time the dealer gives her 2 white back.
She didn't seem overly friendly with the dealer, but I couldn't see how he could have made that kind of mistake twice, then give the correct change on the third time.
Should I have said something? No one else at the table even noticed it (it was full, 10 players). First time it happened, I thought it was my imagination, since no one else said anything. Second time, I knew I saw it correctly.
I didn't say anything because I felt that I wasn't in the hand, and it was up to #9 to pay attention. Was I wrong? Would like to hear what the regulars would do in this situation.
As a player at the table you are IMHO obliged to correct mistakes you see - since you were delt a hand you are part of the game.
He may have just been at a 3-6 game where the $4 change would have been correct but I am just guessing.
I have found when a dealer makes a mistake like this he is usually coming from a different stakes game.
Just a thought.
I agree that this type of mistake usually occurs when a dealer has just come from a different stakes game. Most of the time if you politely point it out, any dealer worth their salt will see that you are correct and gladly correct their error. I have played quite a lot of casino poker and I have never actually seen a dealer intentionally giving someone incorrect change, it is probably an honest mistake. I also agree with Ray that if the person with the short end of the stick is being a jerk or is an angle shooter, I wouldn't say anything.
As an interesting aside, I was playing at the luxor and there was an 8$ bet, which several people called. It was up to me to call and I saw that one player only had four instead of eight chips in front of him. Now I happened to be wearing red tinted sunglasses at the time. Turns out that he had a 5$ and three 1$ chips and I couldn't tell the difference with the glasses on, even up close. (Their one and five chips are too close in color, IMO, they are hardly any different with your glasses OFF). Anyway, I have seen a couple other instances where colorblindness has caused some confusion, but hopefully a dealer would have dealt with this problem BEFORE they started dealing.
dave in cali
Typically I speak up, and I would have in the hand described. But ...
Let's look at extremes.
1) A big no-limit game in which the heads-up pot is $10,000 and there is a $10 error. I wouldn't say anything.
2) A $20-40 pot, heads up, with two players putting in multiple bets on every street that the dealer does not scoop in between streets, and the losing player inadvertantly shorts the pot by one full big-bet. I would speak up every time.
3) Same as #2, except the discrepency is one chip. I wouldn't say anything.
I agree that the proper rule of thumb is to speak up, but it's not an absolute.
ill go one step further. for players like tommy that i like, ill speak up for even a dollar to his advantage but would shutup if he is against an angle shooter or someone that doesnt deserve any help from me because of past experiences if it went against him.
I agree with you guys 100%.
I'm a new player so was curious what the regulars would do in this situation.
What amazes me is that I was the only one who noticed it at a full table - or maybe there were others who did too and just didn't speak up like me. But there are so many other incidents where no one notices little errors, it makes me wonder about how observant others are. Like the dealer shuffling the deck with one player's hand still in front of him and not in the shuffled deck. Or a card turned up in the newly shuffled deck with no one noticing it. I have seen these situations several times in my short playing career, and usually I'm the only one to call attention to it.
They see it. All this means is that you have table-captain tendencies and they don't.
Papio, deal with these situations with a little humour. "are we going to play with 50 or 52 cards?" but said with a smile.
Not "you forgot 2 you idiot, how did you ever get this job?"
OR just let it go and wait for the dealer to catch the mistake. The face up card I would mention before the dealer actually started to deal if they hadn't caught it already.
Regards Mike N R
I would usually correct the dealer. That includes when I benefit.
I probably should have realized that the late-position raiser wanted more money in the pot, not necessarily eliminating better hands or other people.
But with many other callers I was almost positive SOMEONE had at LEAST a king. Maybe I had the right odds to draw to my set, as Zee suggested though.
Thanks for the input, Slay.
with 20 bets out there, and some chance you actually do have the best hand and it holds up, and the chance that it gets checked on the turn, you have a hand that needs to stay in. so in the future you have a few more things to think about. which will make you more money and thats the bottom line. good luck.
Also, if I may suggest, be sure to vary your play.
Perhaps the late raiser, an observing player, has come to read you well, and by raising your flop bet counts on making your fold.
Tomorrow is another day; another dollar to win!
Probably has been discussed before..Sitting at the 2 chair. Player on my right is angled towards me and I can see his cards without any effort on my part at least 3 out of 4 hands. Should I be a gentleman and let him know this.. or take advantage of the situation???
i say entirly on your internal "character meter" and i'm not saying i never do that.
I give them one warning and after that whatever happens is up to them.
I always let them know, repeatedly if I have to. The reason is long range, related to image. I try to emulate those pros I've met over the years who maintain a spotless integrity. This means going out of my way to not do anything even slightly suspicious. I believe that whatever I might gain in the short run by looking at this guy's cards is far outweighed by being percieved as a guy who never shoots angles. The only way I know of to earn that perception is to never shoot angles, of any kind, ever.
From what I've seen, angle-shooters are the most miserable players. They live in suspicion of being shot at, and their eyes dart with guilt as they plot their ploys. That's no way to live.
"From what I've seen, angle-shooters are the most miserable players. "
Here! Here! Great post Tommy!
Excellent response Tommy! I appreiciate people who refuse to shoot angels because I am a relatively new player & it was an experienced , sage & responsible player who repeatedly said to me "protect your hand!" untill it finally sunk in. Had he not been diligent in this admittedly annoying task I would probably have become disillusioned with losses to the other less scrupulous players & quit playing. Our regular bunch recently had something happen that puts a different spin on this One of our long time experienced players (40 yrs) for some reason was failing to protect his hand & another player was using this to his advantage. Another experienced player noticing this took the victim aside & mentioned it to him. The victim promptly resumed protecting his hand & no more was said during that game. However during the game following when the angel hunter was absent, the victim made a number of off color coments about how the guy that helped him was telling him how to play his cards & since he had been playing for 40 yrs., this advice was not appreiciated. When this guy forgets to protect his cards now, ... nothing is said by anyone. Darwin
It isn't your fault he isn't protecting his hand, I would not tell.
You must be one of those angle shooters! Tsk!Tsk!Tsk!
Not true, I actually say very little while a hand is in progress.
It is interesting to see that I am in the minority in this situation. I just feel that it is my job to take advantage of anything I can. I would not try and look at someone's cards if they were at all protected, but if he is showing them to me I feel I am doing nothing wrong. However, I may have to reconsider this after reading some of these posts.
For what it's worth, I don't think it's "wrong" to take advantage of a player who is sloppy with his cards and sneak a peek. As with any ethical choice, it's subjective.
I just don't think it's inherently profitable, in the long run, to peek.
When a player who has obviously played long enough to know better is looking at his cards in a way that makes it easy for me to see their hands, I am always curious and ask myself "why"?
I see it happen enough to know it's not always an accident, but haven't yet decided what it is?
Advertising for team play? Letting me see they don't play junk? Setting me up for the one hand in a big pot?
"Just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they are not out to get you."
also your are taking advantage of all the other players at the table as well. i hope you see that. it pays off in the long run to tell him and even insist. but its like anything, some people wont stop and how far must you go. thats a personal decision. but the other players should stop it as it costs them enough to maybe make them losers.
I will always tell someone once that they are showing me thier cards and even help them protect their hand by showing them the proper way to do so. If I really like them I will tell them twice. After that I make plays against them based on what I know they have. Get with the program - two warnings is more than sufficient. The only exception might be very nice little old lady....
I will warn them a few times and then give up.
I won't try to look but if they are very obvious I won't avert my eyes so to speak. I spend too much effort worrying about them.
I also don't want to seen as someone slouching down in my chair trying to see the cards as the come off the deck.
Regards Mike N
In the latest edition of Poker Digest (Vol.4/No. 8), Tommy Angelo wrote an article titled “Buy the Button, - A Perfect Rule”. In it he describes a Northern California practice of allowing a player who just missed a blind after taking a break the option to post both blinds just to the left of the button (the small blind is dead, the big blind is live). He then says: “The players to his left, who would normally be posting the small blind and the big blind, post nothing on that hand. On the next hand, the player who bought the button gets the button. The blinds resume as usual, and life goes on.”
He goes on to say: “It’s as if you were never gone. And that’s why the dealers and the floor staff like it as much as the players do. Buy the Button keeps games full, prevents stalled games, and helps restart games after domino-effect lobbying”
At first I had trouble understanding exactly how this works and thought that it only applied to situations where you did not have an always forward-moving button (as in Las Vegas and Tournaments). Then I tried it using a forward moving button and am want to be 100% sure I understand it correctly. For those familiar with this practice, do I have the procedure stated correctly in the sequence below?
Hand 1: Tommy is in seat 5 and gets up to take a leak. The button is in seat 1, the small blind in seat 2, and the big blind in seat 3.
Hand 2: Tommy dutifully washes his hands before and after taking his leak, and this hand is quickly completed with the button in seat 2, the small blind in seat 3, and the big blind in seat 4.
Hand 3: Tommy makes sure he zips up and lines up his fly seam to his shirt seam, so he doesn’t get back to the table as the hand is dealt. The button is in seat 3, the small blind is in seat 4, and the big blind is in seat 6. Tommy in seat 5 gets a “missed blind” button.
Hand 4: Tommy returns to the table, looking good with no dribbles and a perfectly tucked in shirt. His hands are clean. He decides to “buy the button”. He posts the live big blind and a dead small blind in seat 5. The button is in seat 4. Seat 7, who would have posted the big blind, posts nothing. Seat 6, who would have posted the small blind, posts nothing.
Hand 5: Tommy gets the button in seat 5. Seat 6 now posts the small blind that he would have posted on the previous hand. Seat 7 now posts the big blind one hand later than he would have had Tommy not “bought the button”.
Hand 6: The button moves to seat six, the small blind to seat seven, and the big blind to seat 8. Normal play is resumed.
Tommy or anyone: Do I have this procedure understood correctly? In addition, are you allowed to buy the button when coming into a game as a new player? It sounds like a great idea. I’m curious about others opinions on this practice.
There is a similar practice recently used in mid limit games at the Hustler and if memory serves me was used at Garden City years ago. In this case if you missed a blind or wanted to come in to a new game you could post the blind(s) to the left of the button. On the next hand the button passed around you but at least you got in play faster. Bob Ciaffone advocated something like this in a column several years ago.
Comments anyone? If I understand correctly and if most agree it is a good idea maybe we can help get this idea or something similar spread around. The problem of stalled games hurts both players and the clubs.
Also, how is this rule implemented if the collection is taken from the button? (I see no problem but I may be missing something).
PS: I just noticed that Tommy Angelo has a web page. The complete article is available there. Here is the link:
Everything looks ok except for Tommy taking a leak. I think you should have said "Tommy get's up and takes a weewee" Then Mason wouldn't have to make a decision on whether to delete your post or not.
Hey my above response is funny. At least I think so. Anyone else?
I think you are funny. Hey, can I borrow $23K?
Nice post, Rick! lol Peeing is definitely an underrated aspect of poker. And I really should wash more carefully.
You've got the rule EXACTLY right. It's important to note that "Buy the Button" is significantly different from the method of entering a game that you mentioned. If we're talking about the same thing, the posted amount is only the BB, not both blinds, and the player does not get the button on the next hand(as you mentioned.)
The main difference is that players with a missed blind button cannot reenter the game using the usual rule. It's for new players only. At least that's my understanding.
Yes, a new player can enter a game with "Buy the Button." Because I'm a habitual blind-mucker, the joke I often make when buying the button is, "You guys only get to rob me once this round."
I agree that this rule should (and would) be universal if only the players and management knew it existed. From the article, "The only thing to prevent a casino from using this rule is that they do not know about it."
The clincher is that buy-the-button is an OPTION.
As to tournies, our blinds go in no matter when we pee, so I'd think it doesn't apply.
As to ring games with a forward-moving-button, that's how the low-limit games are at Lucky Chances and Artichoke Joe's, and it works just fine.
As to ring games with "dead buttons," effectively meaning a player gets the button two hands in a row when a blind goes broke or lobbies, I just thought it through and I can't think of why it wouldn't work in those games as well.
As to collection-on-the-button games, again, that's how the games are at Lucky Chances and at Artichoke Joe's, and again, no problem. When you have the button, you pay. Am I missing the issue that made you ask about that?
No exaggeration, I've seen HUNDREDS of times when buy-the-button kept games from stalling, and helped them get unstalled.
My favorite is when three (or two, or four)consecutive players have missed blind buttons and they all come back to the table but none of the active players want to post blinds in the temporarily short game, and the returning players would like to wait for their big-blinds to come around. The returning players agree to ALL buy the button on the next three hands. One, then the other, then the other. The delayed normal SB and BB, that are normally delayed for one hand, are delayed for three hands. It's mighty slick.
Sing along with Frank Sinatra . . .
"Start spreading the news."
The key is you should wash your hands before you go. I don't want hands that have touched chips (which are about as clean as cow dung) touching my Johnson.
Anyway, I had to write the post above in a hurry and didn't have time to think through all the possibilities. Once I fully understand it, I'll try to enlist some allies and see if they can help get it introduced somewhere down this way.
Maybe we should run this by Bob Ciaffone, Mason, and a few others since they have a fine eye for potential problems. But it sure looks good to me.
re: washing before peeing so keep Johnson clean. I'm gonna steal that and use it in an article for sure. I'll send your check via e-mail.
re: Bob and Mason et al checking for problems. I just learned via email that Buy-the-button has been around since at least 1994. See the email below.
I've seen it in progress for 2.5 years at a large room without one hitch. If there IS a potential problem that has not yet surfaced, I doubt that even the best thinkers in the world could reveal it without first seeing the rule in action.
Here's the email:
I thought I could give you some insight on why you may have believed the "'Buy the Button" rule originated in Reno. I am the swing shift supervisor at the Eldorado in Reno and when we opened the room in 1998, I introduced it into play. I first learned of the rule in 1994 from Ron Allegrinni at Harrah's Ak-Chin in Phoenix, Az. Ron brought it with him from the Hyatt in North Lake Tahoe, and I believe he learned it from Bee. I transferred to Harrahs Skagit Valley casino in northwest Washington in 1995 and introduced it up there. Like you said in your article, it's a perfect rule that is good for everyone. Here at the Eldorado, we use it in all our hold-em games except our No-Limit hold-em. ( 3 blinds, one on the button). The next time you are in the Reno area, stop by and say hello.
You wrote: "I'm gonna steal that and use it in an article for sure. I'll send your check via e-mail."
Gee, How would I cash such a check or am I NOT missing something?
Can you clarify a few things for me?
If a club allows the “Buy the Button” option, I assume a player who misses his blind can still post his missed blinds behind (to the right of) the button as before. So “Buy the Button” allows an additional option and takes nothing away. Is this right?
You wrote: ”You've got the rule EXACTLY right. It's important to note that "Buy the Button" is significantly different from the method of entering a game that you mentioned. If we're talking about the same thing, the posted amount is only the BB, not both blinds, and the player does not get the button on the next hand (as you mentioned.)”
Yes, I think. At the Hustler mid limits, a new player can enter to the left of the button (between the small blind and button) for the amount of the big blind. Next hand the button passes to the left of the new player. A similar procedure is used for missed blinds, except the player must post both blinds (and the button collection in the smaller games if they use it in those games). In Los Angeles, 10/20 and above is usually collected time, 9/18 and below is usually collected with the dead button drop.
”The main difference is that players with a missed blind button cannot reenter the game using the usual rule. It's for new players only. At least that's my understanding.”
I may be a little confused here by what you mean by the usual rule. The “Buy the Button” option and the Hustler type rule are either/or and cannot coexist. But the “Buy the Button” option and the traditional posting rules for missed blinds can work side by side (I think).
”Yes, a new player can enter a game with "Buy the Button." Because I'm a habitual blind-mucker, the joke I often make when buying the button is, "You guys only get to rob me once this round."
So if you enter a game using “Buy the Button” you post both blinds (with the small dead and the big live), then get the button next hand. Otherwise you could wait one hand and post behind the button for one live big blind. If so, I can see why only true “button lovers” would do this ;-).
”I agree that this rule should (and would) be universal if only the players and management knew it existed. From the article, "The only thing to prevent a casino from using this rule is that they do not know about it."
In a large club you have a lot of resistance to change (from customers and management), and in part it is for good reason. Many of the dealers have trouble with the language and would have trouble explaining a new rule to players. This kind of rule may need to be implemented in the top section games (where they often make special rules anyway per player request) and work its way down to all limits. I wonder if someone like John Feeney got behind it we could see it spread down in San Diego and Oceanside.
”The clincher is that buy-the-button is an OPTION.”
And it is an option that should co-exist with existing rules, if my understanding is correct.
”As to ring games with "dead buttons," effectively meaning a player gets the button two hands in a row when a blind goes broke or lobbies, I just thought it through and I can't think of why it wouldn't work in those games as well.”
I so rarely play tournaments and Las Vegas games that I am not the guy to talk to on this.
”As to collection-on-the-button games, again, that's how the games are at Lucky Chances and at Artichoke Joe's, and again, no problem. When you have the button, you pay. Am I missing the issue that made you ask about that?”
No. Now that I think about it I see no problem. Note that missed blinds in Los Angeles currently post the blind live, and the small blind and the drop dead. Or they can wait for the big blind.
”No exaggeration, I've seen HUNDREDS of times when buy-the-button kept games from stalling, and helped them get unstalled.”
This would be the great selling point to management, especially for the games with the button drop.
”My favorite is when three (or two, or four)consecutive players have missed blind buttons and they all come back to the table but none of the active players want to post blinds in the temporarily short game, and the returning players would like to wait for their big-blinds to come around. The returning players agree to ALL buy the button on the next three hands. One, then the other, then the other. The delayed normal SB and BB, that are normally delayed for one hand, are delayed for three hands. It's mighty slick.”
The BB and SB must love it since they can play a bunch of hands without posting!
”Sing along with Frank Sinatra . . ."Start spreading the news."
Sorry, I'm half Polish and I can't sing a lick.
Good questions and points. You are one astute dude.
Early drafts of the article included some of the following, but I'm so fanatical about trimming them down to 800 words (one page)that I took stuff out as usual. My bad.
Rick wrote: "The “Buy the Button” option and the Hustler type rule are either/or and cannot coexist."
In a casino that allows the "Hustler rule," (a new player can post a BB from left of the button and the button passes them), that rule remains unchanged. Buy the button gives him an additional option, that's all. Artichoke Joe's uses the Hustler rule AND the buy-the-button rule. Not a hitch.
Buy-the-button does not REPLACE any existing rules regarding entering or reentering games. Whatever rules a casino employs, they remain unchanged. It is purely an option, meaning any player who wants to do things the old way, can.
< Oftentimes the chronology and reasoning behind change goes like this:
1) Players start talking about an idea 2) Management resists 3) Players talk more 4) Management considers management type things, ultimately, income, and if the player's desires are very strong, and the cost to management is not too bad, a change becomes possible.
Buy the Button would ideally be instated in exactly the reverse order:
1) Management makes a boatload more money by offering Buy-the-button, so they institute the rule 2) Players grumble at first, the normal reaction to change 3) The instant they see the rule in action, they also see the light, and all is well.
Oftentimes the chronology and reasoning behind change goes like this:
1) Players start talking about an idea 2) Management resists 3) Players talk more 4) Management considers management type things, ultimately, income, and if the player's desires are very strong, and the cost to management is not too bad, a change becomes possible.
Buy the Button would ideally be instated in exactly the reverse order:
1) Management makes a boatload more money by offering Buy-the-button, so they institute the rule 2) Players grumble at first, the normal reaction to change 3) The instant they see the rule in action, they also see the light, and all is well.
This is nothing new. We've been doing it in home games out here for years. One of the main advantages is the real gamblers don't have to wait to enter the game. I have no idea why it isn't allowed in public cardrooms.
Also, I'm not sure if you're aware, in the 80-160 games and up in LA a new player can post a large blind between the button and the small blind. The button then skips over him.
The big problem is getting any change, even a good one, accepted. In Los Angeles, the place to start is in a smaller club with open minded management and a struggling top section with lots of props. I can think of a couple candidates right now ;-).
The biggest obstacle I see for you is that all of the LA clubs seem to operate from the same rulebook, so I'm sure they will all be reluctant to change. It'll be a cold day in Tucson when they adopt this rule at the Commerce.
A few of the smaller clubs work off their own rule book. And even in the big clubs, changes are made over time so that some of the rules are not exactly alike. But I agree that change does not come easy.
I enter games by buying the button, the rare times the opportunity arises (since usually the open seat is not in a seat that had the BB on the previous hand.) So usually it's in short games. Gotta admit, no one else does it. Maybe I'm the only "real gambler" in these here parts! Egads!
>>Call me a "real gambler."<<
I gathered that after I read your Q7 post (although you are a somewhat timid real gambler). :o)
I really think this would be a favorable rule for everyone in time games. With a rake, I'm not in any hurry to get back in. But the real gamblers are.
I didn't quite understand how the procedure worked, so I printed out your post and took a leak. Damn, though, it took me forever to line up my fly seam with the seam in my turtleneck.
Buy-the-button is one of those things that becomes INSTANTLY clear when you see it happening, but doesn't necessarily sink in when merely printed. That might be why it is, or will be, slow to take hold across the country.
(By the way, I saw your English foopah posts. Nice.)
I’ve been keeping record of the 90 hours of play in a tight game, 9 players and bout 6 of them seeing the Flop with 4 going to the River on average. Limits: 10-20
It was about 30 sessions, playing everyday in March for about 3-4 hours per session. Starting Bankroll = 10K
Using MM formula for StDev I come with the following results: Time = 90 hours Sessions = 30 Total Profit = $15,691 (average $174/hour) StDev = $309
Now, my question is this: Is this result real, can I count on it as far as go the StDev? - or I was just lucky this month? It sure looks that I has a little on the positive side of the curve.
A $309 StDev in this type of game is reasonable?
Here are my comments.
1. Your overall result is far better than you can expect to do. This is a given since there is no player that I know of who can come close to substaining a win rate like this over time.
2. Your estimate for your sd is also fairly high. It is about double what a true expert would average in a real game.
3. The square root of 90 is approximately 9.5. So your estimate of the standard deviation for the 90 hours would be about 9.5 X 306 which is approximately 2900. So your results are well above 3 standard deviations if we compare you to a break even player. This at first seems to indicate that you really are a winner in this game.
4. However, given that your results are so extreme, and that you are at a "minimal acceptable amount" of time in action to estimate your standard deviation, I would not as yet have much faith in them.
So my conclusion is that you have been a very lucky person who has had an incredibly good run. (Note: This doesn't mean that you aren't a winning player. But it does mean that your win rate should in truth be far below what you have achieved.) Why don't you report back to us after a couple of hundred more hours. It will be interesting to see what happens.
"... in a tight game, 9 players and bout 6 of them seeing the Flop with 4 going to the River on average. "
i'll travel to come play in this game. (at least if its west of the mississippi)
That is not a tight game
TH Starting Hands Code
A-T if s > 8
A-T if ns > 9
UT only s/ng > 7
All pairs OK
From A to T if suited go down to 8
From A to T if unsuited go only to 9
Under T only suited connectors down to 7
Playing all pairs is OK (depends!)
Total 56 hand (i.e. 33%)
Have a Nice Day and good cards!
On the small stakes forum someone asked a question on whether you would tell someone that you can see there hole cards. Many of the influential players such as Zee and Angelo said they would tell the person. I answered honestly and said I would not. I would like to pose another question to those who have posted to that thread about a situation that I feel comes up much more frequently.
Here is another scenario. You play beside someone who shows you his hand before he mucks. This happens on any street, and it only happens when you do not have cards yourself. You are gaining information on how this player plays while the rest of the table is left in the dark. I believe this situation comes up much more often.
1. Would you tell this player not to show his cards to you?
2. What would you do if you were across the table from this?
feeling like a chump,
1) If the player wants to show me his mucked cards I will look at them.
2) I will not say anything if someone else is showing mucked cards. I won't complain and ask to see them. The only time I might ask to see a losers hand is if he has flashed them to other players.
gaining info from that doesnt affect the current hand cant be unethical really. its when you gain directly and even if you gain from the player showing his cards the real problem is that your are gaining from all the other players as well. and they may not know that you can see someones hand. so that is the real problem. the dope that continues to flash his cards deserves what he gets as you are not his baby sitter. although he does have the right not to be taken advantage of. when across the table and someone is showing their cards after the hand ill ask for the show one show all rule to apply if he does it more than a couple of times.
3-6-12 HE game Friday night in Calgary. I am not involved in this particular hand, but thought I would post and get views from around the country on how your particular room or casino might have handled the problem.
At the river, the board was T-8-7-6-2. No flush possible, but just a 9 required for a str8. Three people in, but no river bet. Dealer asks for hands to be shown, but does not specifically ask that any one person (last action?) show first. Player C shows down 8-2 soooted for 2 pair. Player B mucks. Player A turns over her cards, K-9, but neither she nor the dealer realizes she has made the str8, and the dealer mucks her hand and pushes about a $30 pot to Player C.
I was at the other end of the table, and I didn't get a great look at Player A's hand because the dealer mucked the hand very quickly. It was almost subliminal, but I was sure she had a 9, but before I could speak up ( 3 or 4 second delay), someone in the seat next to A pointed out that she had a str8. This was reinforced by another player before I could say anything, so I guess I was not mistaken in what I had seen.
Dealer called for a floorman, but by this time, Player C had stacked the chips. He did not do so in any great hurry, just at a normal pace. He was right next to me, and I have no doubt that given the direction in which he was looking, and the speed in which the hand got mucked, he did not see A's hand.
The floorman questioned the Dealer as to what had happened, but they only estimated the size of the pot at $30 by the $1.50 rake. It may have been an few dollars more. As the dealer shuffled up for the next hand, the floorperson quietly leaned over behind Player C (right next to me so I could hear what she said and how she said it) and politely requested C to return $30 to A. C was very reluctant to do so, as he claimed that he had not seen A's hand, and that as the Dealer had awarded him the pot, he felt the House should make up the pot to A. "It's not my fault she gave me the pot. You guys make it up. I didn't see her hand."
He wasn't going to give it up. Now, just to add flames to the fire, one of the other players, not involved in the showdown, tells C to return the money, it's not his, etc. etc. and the argument starts to escalate. After a couple of minutes, C flings $30 at A and cashes out, with a not-so-polite F-bomb to the chirper seated next to A who almost as much as called the guy a cheater for wanting to hang onto the pot.
What's the drill everywhere else? As I saw it, A did little or nothing to protect her hand. But she did table her cards face-up. The Dealer was way too quick to award the pot, and clearly made a mistake, which we are all prone to do from time to time. Should C be 'forced' to give A the pot? Should the house make it up? As casinos in Alberta are government controlled, the House comes up with the usual BS line of "Gaming Commission won't let us do that" in regards to making up for an employee mistake. Should they have some sort of small limit($50?) for employees to use their discretion in deciding matters like this? What if it was a big NL hand for say, $1,000 involved?
In Grande Prairie similar situations have come up as the dealer's are poorly trained and do not pay enough attention to the game. This sort of thing happened to me once where I announced my hand incorrectly in Omaha High and ended up splitting the pot instead of winning it outright.
This led to conversation and I discussed it with management in the abstract and this is what I learned. The house made a mistake. The player who had the pot pushed to him gets to keep it (at least from what I understand) and there is a phone number that Player A can call and file a complaint through. Since there are witnesses and even the dealer knows what happened, and since the house man was called, the complaint will be validated and the casino will reimburse the pot to Player A.
This is what is done in Grande Prairie, but I'm not sure if it is the gaming act or not. This actually happened once and a player phoned in and filed his complaint. It was investigated and after a period of time the casino payed him for the pot, but this was long after the hand was actually played and Player B kept the pot that was pushed to him.
As I said, this may just be something that the people that own the GP casino due, but I don't think it is. Player A has a valid complaint as his hand was table. Another thing to consider is that each of the tables is likely monitored by the eye in the sky so they should be able to review the tape and make the appropriate call.
I hope this helps. BTW, I never filed a complaint, although management, the houseman, and the players told me that I had a valid complaint. I didn't complain because I found out about this long after the hand was played and I didn't want to go through the hassle. The player I split with was friends with me but he is a serious gambler and wouldn't push his half of the pot to me at the time (I realized my mistake as soon as I had stacked my chips and the dealer had started to shuffle). The other guy had also stacked his chipped and then I mentioned what had happened. He thought about it and then agreed that I was indeed correct. Then a couple of other players said that I was correct and one said that he had seen it and wondered why I didn't win the whole thing. My friend said "Learn to read your hand" and through my a red chip, i chided him about being cheap and have never let him live it down that he didn't give me the money, but it is all in good fun. I believe it was partially my fault, partially the dealers, and that the other player did nothing wrong. Since the casino pushed him his half, he effectively won that half of the pot. It was a $75 pot I think, in $5-10, and that is my story.
The hand of mine was AAQT, board was QT55x and my friend anounced Q's and T's. I said same hand, but then I bugged him about the trash he had compared to the beauty AAQT hand I had. But we both missed the fact that I had A's and 5's, not Q's and T's. The dealer wasn't really paying attention and just split the pot after we both announced the same hand.
I posted a similar situation last year.
The floor decision was to split the pot. I was the one that noticed the error. Player C also left pissed. It was a nice size 3-6 pot.
I would like to think if I was that Player C I would give up the pot without leaving :)
Not sure what country's rules you are interested in, but in some places the rule is that the dealer is required to make it up himself. After all, he made the mistake. But I've never seen this happen, and I've never seen the house make it up either. Every time, the floorman has talked the player into giving up the pot that shouldn't have been awarded to him.
Besides, I thouht two pair beats a straight in Canada.
No,no Brett. It's THREE pair beats a straight. You furreners!
That's because it only takes four cards to make a straight in Canada.
I threw away a winner last night
In a well-run room the house would make it up, and NOT make the dealer pay the $30. It amazes me that this is not common practice. Surely the $30 is a small price for 1) quickly defusing an explosive situation 2) having GOOD word-of-mouth things said about the casino, rather than bad.
And besides that, it's just plain fair.
As to the dealer, no way he should have to make it up. Anyone who doesn't think so should try dealing for a year and then reevaluate your position.
if the player did not see the winning hand he shouldnt have to give up the pot. he is entitled to see the hand that beats him and not have to take the word of a couple of other players. however cards speak and the best hand needs to get the pot. but she needed to speak up before the pot is awarded. the house is wrong to come over to someone and demand to give money back for their mistake. however if anyone has read my past posts on this subject they couldnt have this happen to them. never let go of your hand until you get the pot. never give the dealer your winning hand so he can show it until all other hands are dead and you are sure of it. the dealer should not have to pay the house sho8uld but never does and the person overlooking their hand usually loses out rightfully so.
At the showdown I showed AQ for top pair top kicker on board of Q3456
My opponent held his hand up in front of him and mucked it. The dealer did not see the hand, I did not see the hand. The players on either side of my opponent could see his hand.
One of the players who saw his hand, a kid of around 19, said "Hey, he had a 2!" The dealer pulled my opponents cards out of the muck (he still had a hold of them) and turned over Q2.
This was probaly my 30th or so hour of live poker (2/4 HE) and I did not know the rules. It was clear to me that my opponent did have a straight, but it was also clear that he had folded his hand, conceding the pot.
The dealer called the floorperson over and the the floorperson decided that my opponent deserved the pot. I'm sure had I been savvy enough to explain the situation correctly, pointing out that he did NOT show his hand, I might have had a case. I didn't know enough to argue. The pot was probably about $25
My opponent said "Hey, sorry about that, I hope you are not mad at me."
In reality, I wasn't mad - "Hell, he had the best hand!" was my thinking. I said, smiling and pointing at the kid who spoke up, "No, I'm not mad at you, if I'm mad at anyone it's that little bastard down there!"
The poor kid turned beet red and I had a good time ribbing him for a while. I would show down the best hand and turn and glare at the kid as the other players mucked.
Looking back, I'm glad I didn't make a case out of it. To this day, I have never seen a floorperson change their first decision and it really wasn't worth getting upset about.
He's close to an angler for wanting to hang on to the pot. That's the closer for an angler. Get the money via an angle and then keep it. He may not have angled but he had the finish down tight. Refuse to accept the decision and make as much noise as possible.
This has happened to me twice where I had to return money. I was unhappy about it because I had not recognized the hand (once a str8 and once 2 pair). Once I realized that there was a better hand the pot was reconstructed and I returned the money.
For sure, I discussed and confirmed that more than 1 person had seen the made hand.
you are wrong and Ray Zee is right. A player has the right to see the hand that beats him. He should not have to listen to others who claim it was a certain hand.
Well, I do like absolutes.
How come the canucks want to give up the pot so easy. What's wrong with us.
I think I've learned my lesson.
You can pry these chips from my dead fingers. Mine, Mine, Mine. Let the dealer pay. He's the sonofabitch who screwed up.
How about the overhead camera if their is one?
I'll still give it up if there is more than 1 person who also saw the cards and the player remembers. If it's just the player and 1 other I might give their bets back. Even if I'm forced to give it back I won't leave screaming like a little girl or boy.
Regards Mike N
In this situation, the midwest cardroom that I deal at would require the player to give the pot to the rightful winner or bar them.
As a player, I am pretty easy-going. I will not release my hand before I am sure I have lost or I am paid. However, I will also not complain when a hand is showed and wrongly mucked by the dealer, then I am asked to relinquish the pot.
I played for four years preivious to becoming a dealer and it is still difficult to read omaha hands quickly. It doesn't help when five hands are showed down simultaneously and players start calling hands all at once. I've only recently begun dealing and will get more efficient with time.
The was some discusion about whether you should tell a player that you can see his cards.
Is it in violation of the rules to look at his cards and not say anything? Is it angle shooting or just using an advantage? I haven't been playing for vary long and this is why I ask. I understand that acting out of turn is against the rules and that makes sense. It looking at a players cards in the same category?
Looking at a player's hand is not against the "rules", assuming he's not taking adequate measures to protect his hand.
This is a moral issue.
While it is the player's fault for exposing his hand, I will say something to that player, twice if I need to. I will try to avoid looking toward his cards if he continues, but of course if I see them after a couple warnings, an additional warning is not likely to get results.
Can someone give me an example of something that is within the rules of limit hold'em but that most people don't do because they feel it is immoral? If looking at someone's cards is within the rules i don't see the problem with it. It's like saying "i'm not going to use the checkraise because i think it's immoral". You lose out because others can do it.
Slow-rolling. Most people don't do it because they feel it violates the golden rule of do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
There's looking and then there's looking. If a player is not careful about exposing his cards and you can see them without making an effort to do so, it's one thing. If you're slouching, leaning, talking to him so as to distract him, that's another.
In my opinion, it is the sole responsibility of each player to protect his/her own cards (within reason of course) I generally will say something once, and if it does not stop, I try not to look, but if I see the cards, so be it. Using this information is not immoral, as it is the fault of the player not protecting his hand. Protection of a hand is as basic of a poker skill as is learning to read ones hand, and is therefore just as much a part of the game as is any other aspect.
Legal but considered by most to be unethical: Slowrolling, and asking to see called hands at the showdown.
A semantical note, for anyone who cares about these things.
In philisophical circles, a useful distinction is made between "morals" and "ethics." Ethics refers to man-made codes of conduct. "Morals" refers to behavioral guidelines that come from a universe-creator.
Miscalling your hand hoping the other guy will muck his winner.
I was wondering if someone could expand on exactly why the Starting Hand Rankings in Sklansky's 1997 edition of Hold'em Poker differ from the 1976 edition???
Sklansky's "Hold'em Poker For Advanced Players" sheds some light on the changes:
"The alterations reflect the structure change from one small blind to two blinds which cause more multiway pots and higher pot odds-especially on the flop. Also reflected is the fact the players have become tougher and generally more aggressive as the years have gone by. This has raised the value of suited hands, especially suited connectors. Medium pairs have also gone up in value because you should no longer automatically give up when an overcard flops, especially if the pot is being contested shorthanded."
1) Firstly, are computer simulations used to determine these hand rankings?
2)Is the reason that the value of suited hands has been increased because of the higher pot odds. So, that hoping to catch a straight or flush becomes a better play?
For example, the value of AK, AQ, AJ all drop in the new edition and the value of suited high cards are higher. i.e AJ dropped and J9s rose
3)I am having a hard time with why medium pairs have increased in value. Why should you not automatically fold when an over card flops anymore??? Because of the increased pot odds due to the blinds?
4) If players have become tougher and more aggressive, exactly how does this translate into different hand rankings?? (Examples would be great) I thought in a loose game hands hoping to catch a draw (flushes and straights) go up in value because of the increased action. In a tough game I would suspect that hands like AK, AQ, AJ would not drop in value like they did in the new edition & suited connectors would not increase as much as they did???
Is there anyone out there who is wondering about this as well?
Thanks in advance for any help, JM
I just purchased the 1997 edition this evening and reread this section of HFAP a few minutes ago.
This is my take on the matter. The seemingly small addition of another blind causes more aggressiveness before the flop as well as more players seeing the flop. Thus, the pots preflop are significantly larger. This causes players to become more aggressive on the flop, trying to knock out players and scoop the pot right there. The larger resulting pots, however, give the right odds for more drawing hands. Add this to the fact that hands bet out on the flop are slightly weaker than those that were bet when only one blind (and smaller pots) existed, and it becomes correct to call with weaker hands as well.
As for specific questions:
1. I cannot say for sure, but I very much doubt that computer simulations were a major factor in determining the hand rankings. Simulations are very good for determining how to play one particular hand in one particular instance, but it would be a monster chore to generalize all hand rankings based upon these simulations. The problem is that players can be of many different types and can sit in virtually an infinite number of arrangements. All of this affects the final hand values to some extent. A simulation does fine if you know what types of players are in the game and where they are sitting, but with current software (namely Texas Turbo Holdem), it is impractical to program enough different lineups to enough insight to generalize the hand rankings. Perhaps David and Mason used simulation results to aid them, but mostly (I think) they based it upon practical experience.
2. Yes, suited cards increase in value due to larger pots as well as implied odds...players are more likely to pay you off when you do hit your hand. However, depending on how many players are in the pot preflop, many of these hands' values are once again reduced after the pot has been raised. This is one area I need to think seriously about. I may play TOO tight for a raise considering today's looser standards. (But not much too tight) I will be paying for professional tutoring soon and this would be an excellent area to explore.
3. Medium pairs are worth more due in small part to increased pot odds; a related reason is that players are more aggressive, betting hands of lesser strength. Therefor, you are more likely to have the best hand. They may be betting second or third pair or even a gutshot straight draw.
4. Hand value vary drastically between games. Because of this, a hand rankings chart is just a basis upon which you can fall back on when you are unsure how to proceed. Yes, hands such as AK and AQ are still good in games with fewer callers seeing the flop. In fact, they may be slightly stronger, since there is more money in the pot to begin with.
In 1980 a small book by David called ESSAYS ON POKER appeared. In it there was an essay titled "New Hold 'em Rankings." ESSAYS ON POKER is now completely contained in the book SKLANSLY ON POKER. Here are the first few paragraphs from "New Hold 'em Rankings."
" These are my revised rankings for the best starting hand in limit hold 'em. The original rankings appeared in my book Hold 'em Poker. There was a small revision in the second edition. These rankings have been copied by quite a few authors in subsequent poker books. (They also appear in Hold 'em Poker and Hold 'em Poker For Advanced Players [which I co-wrote with Mason Malmuth].)
Since hold 'em came into being, there have been a few changes in the Nevada hold 'em scene. These changes have served to make my original rankings slightly out of date.
Two things have happened: 1. The players are tougher. 2. The "blinds" are bigger.
For instance, the $10-$20 game which was described in my book as having one $5 blind now has a $5 and a $10 blind.
The $15-$30 and $20-$40 games have doubled their old blinds. These larger blinds have great implications on your correct strategy.
Larger blinds tend to encourage multiway pots. This, in turn, raises the value of suited hands, especially suited connectors. You will see this reflected in the new rankings.
The fact that players are tougher along with the size of the pot before the flop has raised the value of medium pairs in the hole. This is because you should no longer automatically give up on these hands when an overcard flops."
By the way, SKLANSKY ON POKER is an excellent book that many of you have not read. You may want to pick it up.
Mason wrote: "By the way, SKLANSKY ON POKER is an excellent book that many of you have not read. You may want to pick it up. "
Gimme a chance, dude! I am currently reading Poker Essays, while rereading TOP and HPFAP-21. It's amazing how much more I pick up rereading those as I gain experience.
I also have 7CSFAP-21, but have not had time to read that through once yet! I also have the Suzuki book. The Hi-Lo book is on the 'to buy' list.
To top that off, Super/Sytem arrived Tuesday and of course, I can't let THAT just sit there!
I think I have a problem....
My name is Dan, and I am addicted to poker books.
I'm sorry, but we have more books than just the ones you mentioned, and have a few more on the way.
Make sure you play some poker while you're reading away. It will help makes things more clear.
I was just kidding. I don't usually read more than two books at the same time.
I have always read a lot, so it's not a big deal. I am always pleasantly surprised as I go back and re-read material after playing and see how much more the texts offer in conjunction with experience.
I was playing in a stud tournament last night. It was a bounty tournament that has two local 'celebrities' with $250 bounties on each of them. Last night was two local sports talk radio personalities, Paul Allen and Jeff Dubay.
I was reading Poker Digest while waiting for the tournament to start and Dubay looked over at the magazine and said " 'POKER Digest'?? There is such a thing as a 'poker' digest? You mean you actually READ about cards??"
I just laughed.
I exited the stud tournament when my rolled up 9's ran into rolled up K's. Another guy had trip queens. Everyone all in, no full houses.
I was hoping someone could tell me where to find a holdem game in the 15-30 range in New Orleans. I'm going there this weekend, last time I was there the only 10-20 game I found was Omaha high.
I apologise in advance to my expert peers if what I am about to say is stating the obvious; or, conversely, if it is just useless meandering. Unlike many of you, I am still at the shallow end of my learning curve, and this is an exercise to try to help me understand more the reasoning behind some of your posts.
Often, I see comments that you should call or raise the last bet of only two units if you have any chance at all of winning, because to lose, say, twenty units or more by not calling adds to a far greater total loss in the long run.
Taking this theory back one card suggests that you should call or raise a turn bet if you have a reasonable chance of filling; and, even further, you should call or raise a flop bet if you have a fair chance of making a hand.
If all players played by this philosophy, unfortunately, it would make the winning of a hand almost totally card-based luck, and it would be likely that there would be a majority of players going to completion in a far great number of hands.
Patently, this does not happen; which infers that most players do not follow this method of play.
However, I have to admit that I do see a number of winning players who seem to play in a far greater percentage of hands than others in a game. I have often put their winnings or their river-made hands down to blind luck, but, if there is any sound logic to the "call the last bet" theorem, I think I might suddenly have seen the light!
As long as an aggressive player following this system is playing against players who don't follow the system, he will find that he wins a large number of hands uncontested; similarly, he will find that he often wins against the one or two other players left at completion, purely on a simple win-some-lose-some basis; when he sees that he has obvious winners, his consistent aggressive betting will disguise that fact from the other players, who will have recognised that he is as likely to show a pair of twos as a full house, and he will receive action from the two pairs and trips hands.
So. How do you defend against this type of player?
The answer has to be, if you can't beat him, join him. Play by his rules. If he bets, at least call, if not raise selectively.
This strategy will even out his previous advantage against you, and will put you in the position of also winning from the other "non-system" players.
Finally ... yeah: and what is my point?!
It is merely to voice my (latest!) personal conclusion that to be a bigger winner than normal in this marvellously complex game, you have to play not only aggressively, (as I think we all accept), but LOOSELY; which is the new thinking, to me.
ps I questioned a one-on-one big winning player called Sarah-something at one of the well-known internet sites about this theory, and her answer was :-) which I took to be her approval!!
Loose players are generally losing players. For most games through the mid limits, tight-aggressive wins the money. This means you are tight in choosing which hands to play, and then aggressive when you do play.
Your logic of calling the last bet means calling before the last bet is faulty. Calling at the end is a known quantity: that is, you know you are calling to win X number of dollars for only one more bet. Calling, say, on the flop in hold 'em, is a different situation in that you don't know for sure how many bets it's going to cost you to get to a showdown, nor do you know what your final hand will be. In which case should you call more often: when you have to put in $70 to win $60 or when you have to put in $20 to win $130?
Winning players may seem to play more hands because, when they're winning, they're holding a lot of cards. But it's the losing players who play more hands. Losing players may even win more hands than winning players, but they lose a lot more hands too.
I have not seen any comments at all (at least on this forum) that you should call or raise on the end if you have any chance at all of winning. What I have seen is comments that you should call on the end if you assess your chance of winning as greater than the odds you are getting to call. And you don't have to be correct 100% of the time to be doing the right thing by calling, nor does your chance of winning have to be terribly high, given that, by the end, there's usually a lot of money in the pot relative to the amount you have to pay to call.
to be a bigger winner than normal ... you have to play not only aggressively, but LOOSELY;
Whoa! Nothing could be further from the truth. Playing too many hands is the downfall of many otherwise expert players. I urge you NOT to start playing loosely. We may never hear from you again.
Also, this heads up player Sarah confirmed your questions but she's talking about heads up play. Heads up vs. ten handed is practically not even the same game. In heads up play, you should probably be playing 60 to 70% of your hands.
Also, calling that last bet is not always automatic, even when the pot is big. There are certain players that you can fold to with impunity. They are not bluffing. Ironically, even against decent players (but not experts) the bigger the pot, the LESS LIKELY they are bluffing because the pot is so damn big. They know you HAVE to call. You can often fold correctly against these players.
Be careful tho, until you know your players, it's best to call down that last bet in a big pot.
Perhaps "loosely" is too loose a word to use - I still believe in a ring game that to enter the hand you need the starter cards that we have discussed previously - I mean that once you have entered the hand, you can maybe loosen your "staying" requirements.
For example, last night, I raised AKo in the button position. My only caller was the BB.
The flop was 952. He checked. I bet. He called.
The turn was 4. He checked. I bet. He called.
The river was 10. He checked. I believed the only way to win was to bet. I bet. He hesitated. He called.
At first I thought he was a total twit. But when I thought about it, although almost all players wouldn't have called the initial raise with K2o, once he had done so, knowing me as usually a tight opener, basically he just gambled, say 50/50, in the loose fashion that I have described, that I didn't have a pair in hand, and therefore, because of the board, his pair of twos was good.
I'm not saying he made a good play altogether, but he did make a good call at the end, in my opinion. I don't think I would have got involved in the first place, and I assume if he hadn't flopped a pair he was out of there after my flop bet. So for risking one small bet he won six and a half small bets by playing loosely, in the specific circumstances.
On the button and everyone folds, this player may have put you on a steal with 2 decent cards. You could have anything from AA-TJo. You could even have worse if the other player was more likely to give up his BB (which he wasn't)
Once he pairs the flop that has all small cards he figures there is a good chance he is ahead. He's right. You're drawing to either an ace or to runner runner 9,5.
He simply let you bet when no face hit. Had a Ace hit he may well have folded if he knew your play well enough.
On the river there were ways for you to win without betting. He was going to call with any pair or better. Had he been on a draw such as 67s then you would win. He would have folded such a hand on the river.
Once he called the turn you need to realize the above. He suspects that you have 2 face cards and is not going to fold for 1 bet.
This is much different than just calling because you have a chance at the pot.
After river there is 30 BB's in the pot.
You have 67s and missed your str8 flush draw but paired your 6. The betting goes Bet, Raise, Call to you. Are your 6's good? Maybe but almost for sure not because of the caller. FOLD in a big pot even though you actually have a slim chance
When you have a weak hand, the major differences between the flop and the river are that on the flop your pot odds are routinely worse (small pot) AND your implied odds are routinely worse (you have to pay more later). That is to say you risk quite a bit more playing weakly on the flop (intending to show it down) than you do on the river. Likewise a semi-bluffer (intending to bet all the way) is risking a LOT more on the flop than the river and is therefore more likely to try to steal the river against someone with a paranoid weak hand.
Therefore, making crying calls on the river is a lot more profitable than on the flop.
You are certainly more likely to make weak calls against an assertive player willing to bet weaker hands than yours. Yes, this is "looser". But don't confuse this with being less selective since pre-flop selectivity has much more to do with everybody at the table than just one player.
Hi ... I am planning a trip to central canada and am an avid poker player. I will be stopping in Regina and understand there is a Casino Regina there. I would like to know what the high end limits are in omaha, holdem and 7 stud. Also, how far is it from the airport? and are there motel/hotels located nearby?
Thanks in advance for any help you can give.
Central to the hotel district. 10-20 usually highest in HE with some low stud and very infrequent O/8. Easy access from airport. Guaranteed taxi service from airport. Games usually in evenings til 3-4 am. Big tournament on next week. Regards, Dave
Thanks for the info ... but I was just wondering ... found Casino Regina's home page and it says the cdn poker championships are this weekend (the 7th) I thought they were next week and thats kind of what you seemed to indicate. Am I reading it wrong or is the website wrong?
I heard that casino is EXTREMELY smoky. Some kind of big tournament is going on next week that a lot of players are going to.
I've been a moderately successful card counter for the last 5 years and have recently stumbled onto poker as a possible source for a supplemental income.
The thing I liked most about blackjack was the ease of calculating my hourly winrate and sdt dev (Blackjack attack was invaluable and my results over nearly 200,000 hands fell pretty close to my expected value.
With this background in mind. I love playing poker butdo not like the lack of being able to mathematically figure my hourly win rate and sdt dev (or can I??). This is really my question: Is it possible to calculate a win rate and std dev for either 7-stud or hold'em?? I've played only small stakes thus far at a nearby casino (1-5 stud, 3-6 hold'em) for about 50 hours and I'm averaging about 16 bucks an hour net profit. I've had 9 winning sessions and 3 losing ones. The competition is very weak and though I feel like I'm at an advantage is there a way to quantify my edge (hourly expected value) as well as std dev??
Any help would be greatly appreciated. If anyone has a reliable formula I'll be a friend for life
Thanks and good luck to all!!!
Mason will tell you to buy his book. Until www.deja.com got amnesia, I would have told you to see Mel3Brown's rec.gambling.poker post instead, for a more robust formula. You can also buy the StatKing program (available from Conjelco), which will do the calculations for you automatically.
Your historical win rate is trivial to calculate: winnings divided by hours. You can estimate your standard deviation quickly by recording your stack size once per half hour (or per lap in hold'em) and taking at least 10 measurements. Alternatively, you could just steal some standard deviation figures from similar players in similar games.
You can set confidence bounds on your results. Like you might be able to say you win 3 small bets per hour, plus or minus 2 small bets to 95% confidence. You never really know your EV, however. No matter how high your win rate has been in the past, the next game you play could be the game from hell with a cheater or other factor that turns you into a loser, and in fact every future game could be the same.
I wouldn't (and don't) worry too much about my EV and stdev at poker since my exisitng BJ BR easily allows me to play up to the biggest stakes poker games locally available, which are fortunatly almost entirely populated with idiots and morons who play more like typical 3-6 (=bad) players. If you're in the neighbourhood of expectation after 200,000 hands (~2000 hours) of BJ, and have been playing for any kind of meaningful stakes, then you're likely sitting on enough BR to play any red-chip poker game you might find. Always remember rule 0: table selection. You'll get your ~1BB/hour, with a stdev of 10 BB to 15 BB/hour, using a 300+ BB bankroll--all rules of thumb that I'm sure you've seen before, and my results so far are in line with these estimates.
But if you're still concerned, I suppose you could run a TTH sim but programming typical opposition profiles is likely difficult and time-consuming. (I personally have not done this myself.) The built-in low-limit profiles in TTH gerenally are not as weak as many of my typical opponents, and I don't believe I'm the only one who has found this to be the case.
There just is no BJRM or tables from ch.10 in Don's book for poker. But the stdev in poker is so low compared to BJ that calculating risk (and return) has never concerned me. I put all my effort into sharpening my game, not figuring out how much I'm going to win or what kind of swings I'm likely to endure.
I think Jackolantern will need to become a solid player first.
The better you are the higher your EV will be. Your actual win rate could be something completely different.
Yes, table selection is paramount. You will have a better EV as a good player against a table of poor players than you will as a very good player against a table good players. (I'm guessing here since I am not a "very" good player.)
Regardless of your bankroll, learn to beat the smaller games. Account for rake since you may not be able to beat the game for much due to the rake. Treat this as your training time. Maybe 300 hours ought to give you a good idea where you stand.
Results are important but not as important as being able to see flaws in your game and in the games of the other players. If you can't identify the fish ... well you know.
In BJ you have full knowledge of every situation (including knowledge of the opponent and of yourself) and there is a manageably finite number of situations, allowing you to fully calculate to a nats eyebrow.
In Poker you have little knowledge of the opponent (what will he do, how good is it), incomplete knowledge of yourself (how good is that call on the river?), and a hopelessly huge might-as-well-be-infinite number of possible situations.
Anybody who says they can accurately calculate their EV for a particular table is lying. You can only SWAG it based on your objective past measurments and your subjective estimation of these opponents.
Thanks for all the reponses. Let me see if I have the general idea: It's not as easy to accurately compile an hourly win rate or std dev in poker versus BJ. I was hoping to have some basic formula to 'predict' what my EV and std are versus using my 'postdictive' results to figure. I understand the difficulty given the nature of the two games (BJ versus poker)
I definitely know (or at least so far it's been my experience) that the std deviation is SOOOOO much less in poker than BJ (which is why I'm devoting time to mastering poker, the BJ swings are giving me ulcers!!). Is the formula (while I'm sure is just a ball park gauge) : one big bet per hour EV with a 10-15 big bet per hour std dev?? Does this simply mean if I'm playing 3-6 hold'em that my hourly win rate is $6 (the big bet)?? and my std dev per hour is between 60-90?? Does this approximate win rate factor in the 'drain' of the rake?? Is this based on 40 hands per hour??Sorry for the annoying questions, I should just go buy a book (the three poker books I've read have not addressed hourly winrate and std dev)
Jack o Lantern
1. Where are the best 10-20 games in LV right now? 2. Everyone is playing Hold'em these days--can more money be made at other games (Omaha/8 for instance?) 3. I'm going to LV in the middle of May--WSOP time. Are the games going to me harder, on average? Would any be easier? Which limits would show a significant skill level difference?
1. Right now the best 10-20 game is at the Mirage but in 45 minutes it'll be at the Orleans.
3. They will be exactly the same. The 8-16 at the Bellagio will be easier from 9:35 a.m. until 5:20 p.m. 40-80, 30-60, 1-5 stud.
Please forguive me for deviating from this Thread and if somebody please adress a question that I can't find in the books . A good, in the black player once said " I'm a 30/ 70 poker player". He was talking about odds that guide him to make bets. I appreciate references or details in this subject. My very much anticipated thanks. Dino.
I'm a beginner at Texas Hold'em and live in the A.C. area and would like to work on developing my skills at the game while minimizing time spent at the poker parlors until i'm more confident in my abilities (haven't been yet actually, but suppose I couldn't do too much damage to myself playing the $2-$4 limit games). Anyway my point is that i've heard about Wilson's Turbo Texas Hold'em but the problem is that I've got a brand new Mac. Does Sega or Playstation offer anything and/or is there some software out there for Mac users?
Try the WSOP Adventure Deluxe Casino Pak. I've got the Windows version, but they make a version for the MAC. I believe it's $29.95 and you can order it from ConJelCo. It includes all the Casino games, a no-limit hold'em satellite, limit hold'em, 7-Card Stud, Omaha high, and the WSOP final event simulation. I think that this software is good for learning.
On the limit games you will find it much tighter play than in real life, but I think it's good for practice and inexpensive.
I appreciate your response and input. I'll go check out this wsop pak as it sounds like it will atleast meet my needs for now. My previous obsession was shooting craps at the Trop and Hiltion where i got 5 X odds. I read all of these interesting craps books by a guy named Frank Scoblete but just don't have the bankroll to cash-flow the craps tables and make any real money so decided to try something else.
Good Luck, Bill
another option if you plan on playing low limits, would be to get into a few free online games. Play is pretty similar to the low limits in that you WILL be shaking your head in disbelief, though not AS badly.
If you plan to goto the higher limits The WSOP deluxe Mah suggested is pretty good (and fun to play as well).
Few sites where there is free play and i am sure supports macintosh are Yahoo! and www.funcom.com
Craps has the illusion of making a big win, but you will lose in the long run. Don't believe what he says about Craps. The only people that have won big, have lost it all back eventually.
Poker will take some time to learn. You may want to consider BlackJack. There are still some pretty good double deck games. If you are interested in counting cards. There is a 2+2 booklet for $4 that will teach you the fundamentals. You will just need to practice for about a month to get pretty good at counting two decks. Just thought I would mention it.
Not knowing anything about Hold'em poker i went out and got two books on it (one good and another one questionable). The first was David Sklansky's Hold'em Poker. I initially found the reading a little dense since i knew little about poker so i got another book called "Winner's Guide To Texas Hold'em Poker" written by a guy named Ken Warren who writes in a style good for 3rd graders which was great for me. I then read Sklansky's and noticed that their hand rankings were quite different. Warren's rankings appear much tighter and somewhat inconsistent with the logic of Sklansky's rankings. Is it okay to use Skansky's rankings in a $2-$4 low limit game? Warren said that you should use only the most premium of hands in early position (even just to call) IN A LOW LIMIT GAME. His hands are AA, KK. QQ, AKs ,AQs, AQ, and AK. He places JJ and TT as middle position call hands (which doesn't sound right or make any sense according to Slansky's standards). Maybe he thinks beginners should play tighter. Is it that or should everyone play tighter in lower limit games? I'm tempted to totally disregard Warren's hands and use Sklansky's when i try low limit play for the first time.
Also, what would be the expected hourly win rate for a good but not worldclass beginner in a $2-$4 limit hold'em game after he's gotten over the biggest part of the learning curve and played about 50 live hours of parlor play? I'd like to have some sort of barometer of my performance.
Thanks to all and good luck. Bill S.
I would recommend you read Lee Jones' book, "Winning Low Limit Holdem". Lee's starting hands are a good starting point. Play tight, slective and aggressive.
To all who responded,
I went out and got Lee Jones' book and you're right, it is much better. Played low limit hold'em for the first time for 5 hours and only lost $30 and would have been up for the session had i not made some really stupid tactical errors with raises and re-raises on the river while misreading my own hand (inexperience). Anyway my point is that those starting hands were probably the reason i was even able to compete with my lack of experience. I saw many players playing trash hands on the button and poor hands in early position. I like the way Jone's laid it all out as to when to call, raise, fold, etc. before the flop. I suspect that in low-limit games that just knowing what starting hands to play in what positions makes all the difference even more so than fancy slow-playing and check-raising. Poker's a fun game but i won't be quitting my day job any time soon!
Thanks again for pointing me in the right direction, Bill S.
You would do well to completely disregard the Warren text. It's utterly worthless, and will only cost you money.
You won't have any feel for your hourly earn after only fifty hours, so I wouldn't start to fret (or gloat) over your results untill you've put in 200 hrs or so. And at that point I'd move up in limits a little-- at least to a 4-8 game, if one's available-- so you've got a chance of doing something other than just feeding the rake.
Good luck, Guy
The Lee Jones book is a good start but you really want to read and re-read the section on playing in loose games in the 21st Century Edition of HPFAP. One of the problems with the Lee Jones book is that he advocates playing tight and then if you get a good piece of the flop pounding the table with bets and raises. Sometimes you're better off letting in some of the weaker calling stations behind you by just calling. I found the Lee Jones book to be a great beginning foundation, but overly simplistic.
I started playing low limit hold em 3 years ago with an $800 starting bankroll.I play less than once a month.I have about 100 hours of playing time at each of the levels 2-4 , 3-6 , 5-10. I have managed to increase the bankroll to $2800 and have recently slipped back to $2200.I have progressed to the point that I am a 5-10 player.The recent fallback can be attributed to taking a shot USPC and NEPC satellites with limited success.4 wins in 20 attempts.Played in 2 events and sold the other 2 vouchers ,effectively creating a freeroll.No cashes.My point here is actually a question?How religiously do you protect your bankroll and how much of a bankroll do you play out of? MY bankroll is strictly for poker.Any thoughts?
The major issue is how much of a "disaster" it is, for you, if you lose your bankroll. Only you can answer that. For professionals with no other income, its a big disaster. Its much less of one for recreational players. If you have a solid job and don't mind re-funding, take all reasonable chances.
Never-the-less, you should respect your bankroll and keep risk-of-ruin reasonably small.
A loss of $600 is nothing to be conserned. Tournaments create high variance.
One thing about playing satellites with non-fungible entries as prizes is that you should not play those unless your bankroll is such that you would have spent the full amount anyway. (An exception can be made if it's a close call and the extra equity accrued through a satellite is enough to push you over. Also you could make an exception if your bankroll was sufficient for 99% of your gambling activities, but for a different activity it is insufficient, i.e. say you are a 4-8 player with a $10,000 bankroll. That's more than sufficient to play your regular game, but not enough to play the 10k event at the WSOP. It would be fine to peel off a couple hundred to play a super if that made you happy, though the argument could be made that your long-term bankroll growth would be best maximized by other in-between point options. Anyway, this is definitely not the same as having 2800 to play 5-10. In this case, you probably can afford to play satellites a bit, but at the same time, you are already at a point where an unsuccessful foray might destabilize your bankroll for the limit at which you currently choose to play.)
Thanks for your thoughtful post and careful critique.Your insight into satellite play is very perceptive as I did peel off 220 to play in a super-satellite at the Taj in Dec. at the USPC.I finished 7 th out of 85 with many rebuys that created a prize pool of 25,000. the top 5 cut a deal for 5000 each.This near miss would have propelled my playing and rocketed my bankroll but was not to be .I am regrouping my thoughts for ring games with an occasional shot at a tourny.The wednesday and friday Trop tournies appear to be the right way to go. Protecting the bankroll at $2200 is of the most importance.I like to believe that I have the most patience of anybody in the cardroom.Any thoughts?
Well, per http://www.cardplayer.com/tt.html , those EF's are 60 and 115. Is that right? If so, 115 is way too high for your current bankroll. Maybe one question I have to ask is "do you care much if your 2-3k bankroll gets wiped out?" If so, you probably shouldn't play 100-person tournaments with a $115 entry. If you're a good but not great player, for even a 10% risk of ruin, you'd want at least a 5k br. (This assumes they pay 1-table out of 10 and you have a steady style. If they pay 2 tables, you can reduce br requirements by 30%. If you have an all-or-nothing type style, you'll need over 10k.) If it doesn't bother you to replenish 4-figure bankrolls from your regular income, you can of course take more liberties. Anyway, it sounds like you're still kinda new and just starting to build the bankroll and the skills If this is so, I'd recommend focusing your energies on improving your ring game until you're at least beating 10-20 steadily. Only then would I recommend becoming a student of tournament poker. good luck.
In low limit holdem (ie 3/6), I see the average tip per hand is ranging from 2-4 dollars! Last night, I was in a pretty loose table, so every pot was fairly decent size. However, after couple hours of playing, I noticed even though there are couple winners, but there is not that much money left on the table! Is this my imagination or what?
The casino rakes $3 per hand, plus the dealer takes $2-4 dollars per hand, because once that money is going into the dealer's box, it's not coming back.
I tip on the hands that I win, but I just think excessive tipping can only hurt the game, what do you guys think? Comments welcome.
I think that if salaries go up, we get better dealers, and that is good.
But if your goal in the long run is profit, then as selfish as it seems, you are better off not overtipping..as far as others tipping, why should it affect you other than the fact that those players may leave the table earlier. As long as there other players to replace them with equal or lesser skill, it's all good.
I don't think it's your imagination. If the rake and the tip equal $6/hand, at 36 hands/hour, this would be $216 coming off the table/hour. If 9 players all bought in for $200, all the money would be gone in 9 hours.
In the games I play, (L.A. area) there is a time collection ($14/hour/player in 15-30; $16/hour/player in 20-40; $18/hour/player in 30-60) and most of the time the dealer gets tipped only $1/hand.
As a side note, I'm not sure a lot of beginning players realize how well you have to play to beat the game. If, for example, you play 15-30 where I play 6 hours a day, 4 days a week, this costs you $17,472/year in time collection. If you win 3 hands an hour and tip $1/hand this is another $3,744. So you're paying over $21,000 a year to be a part time (24 hours a week) to play. You need to beat the game for $17.00/hour just to break even.
Another point that I forgot to mention is there are often players walking during the game, so the game becomes 7 handed, and the $3 rake goes in much much faster. $2 rake for 6 handed. But it seems to me playing short handed, the game is unplayable.
I highly suspect most of the low limit players, I'd say probably like 95% are probably not winning players, due to high rake and overtipping. It also seems to me that the worse the player is, the more he tips -- not that I'm not advocating tipping, but I'd prefer to see more money remains in the play...
In a hold'em game they deal around 35 hands an hour if $6 comes off the table each hand that is over $200 an hour since in LL games most buy in for around $100 the house and dealers get the entire tables buyin in less than 5 hours. Does that answer your question.
People play poker for different reasons. The players who are tipping $2-$4 are probably there purely for a good time and profit is a nice side effect but not really a concern.
Most of these types of players have enough extra money to throw around compared to the limit that they are not worried about an extra dollar or two.
I am a dealer and in my area, the usual tip is $.50 or $1. As a player, I tend to tip $1 per hand regardless of pot size, which is overdoing a bit. As a dealer, I understand that players have different motives and those that tip less may be looking out for their bottom line.
One player never tips anybody, yet I do not mind dealing to him, as he keeps the games alive and never creates problems.
Yes in my opinion overtipping is bad for the game and heres a few reasons why,it takes major money off the table and its from the livest players making less for the winning player to win,it makes players who play for a living look bad in the eyes of some dealers, and will actually turn dealers against the local guy (their bread and butter although most dont realize it), and encourages table talk from certain dealers who can taste a big score from a sucker, turning them into hustlers,it also can create a hostile environment where (and I ve personally seen this on several occasions)a player is chastised by another player after he took down a monster pot and then threw the dealer a dollar.... for being a stiff.And I have a question...if everyone throws a dealer .75 or a dollar, which seems like enough,wont they make 40 to 50 K a year?How much should a dealer make?
As long as you yourself are not overtipping, it shouldn't affect how much money you make. Unless your opponents all go broke of course.
DeadBart,its simple math.If a live(losing) player walks into a poker room with 1000 to play 15/30 and wins a bunch of pots say 4 or 5 an hour,which isnt unusal for a guy who plays way too many hands and tips 2 to 4 a hand that equates to 8 to 16 an hour.Couple it with his losing play and see what happens.Over a long session thats a huge amount that is unwinnable.Over a year its astronomical the amount that comes off the table.It only wouldnt matter if it was someone like Bill Gates,someone with a bankroll into infinity.
Excellent point Paul. Anyone who thinks like DeadBart doesnt have a clue. He obviuosly does not play for a living.
Ever see dealers tip? It's amazing.
Although I have talked to at least one dealer who privately admits that he only overtips dealers who also play and overtip right back. He does not toss $3 and $4 tips at 3/6 to dealers who don't play.
Very interesting observation. I've also seen it happened, but didn't realize what's going on behine the scene until you've mentioned. It makes perfect sense now...
Im from Australia and tipping isn't a custom here....my question is when at a casino if you were playing a house game (BlackJack for example) would you be expected to ti[ the dealer? And If not, why are you expected to tip at a poker table?
P.S. Dealers don't get tips here
I suspect that in Australia, dealers are compensated from the rake, not directly from the players. I honestly would rather it was that way in the US.
Regarding blackjack dealers: On the rare occasions I played blackjack, I tipped when I won. Usually, I would take an odd chip from a blackjack win and place a tip bet. Or if I had doubled down and won (a rare occasion for me!), I would place a tip bet. If the dealer didn't deal me any blackjacks or winning hands, I didn't tip. Not that I thought he had anything to do with it, it's just the way I did things.
I tip a great deal more in poker than I did at blackjack, but that is mainly because I win at poker. I usually didn't win at blackjack.
3-6 is already close to unbeatable with a $3 straight drop. this is the main place that online poker has live low limit beat. vegas is a possible exception if you happen to love there cause it's a percentage rake there.
as for tipping, i just dont really give much of a care what the other players and dealers think of me in regards to this. i play 6-12 full kill and if i win a big pot ill tip $1, if i win a big kill pot ill tip $2. if the dealer is lame in anyway or rude or slow or doesnt do their job right then i will not tip. if i tip and they dont say thanks i wont tip them again.
im not there to make friends with the dealers. realise im not at all saying that im rude to dealers nor that i trash talk dealers, i would never do that. people who blame the dealers for their own crappy poker playing, or even the ones who constantly ask for set ups or a new deck for that matter, are obvious morons. i will be polite and friendly and will tip or not on my own terms. if the recreational or rich players want to pick up the slack for me then great.
This phenomenon might make $$ disappear off the table faster, but what can you really do about it? I have worked in jobs where I got most of my income from tips, and I ain't gonna complain. Most serious players will not overtip, and therefore cut into their profits. I typically tip 1$ per pot. Sometimes I am feeling generous and tip more, especially if the dealer is especially good or the pot is very large, but I am not sending all my profits away in the pockets of the dealers. On the other hand, I tip even the marginal dealers the same, as long as they are making an effort. People who tip that much all the time are probably weak players, so despite the fact that they will go broke sooner, you should still want them in your game.
Being well tipped might increase the overall quality of dealers, due to the increased incentive to do a good job. This might actually help the games.
dave in cali
$4-8 HE, I have 98o on the BB, no raises. Five of us see the flop which is Q93r. I check, wonderful calling station checks (?), rock raises, two drop, I call, calling station calls. Three of us for the turn card, which is an 8. Now I have two pair, not great, but good. We both check to the rock who bets. I raise because I know he will fold. Calling station calls. Heads up. At this point I am curious, because it wasn't like calling station to check the flop, but I figure she is now true to nature and calling happily along.
River is a 3 to pair the board. I bet because I know she will call, and I figure the pot odds are with me that it's a good call if she has a higher pair than my two pair of 98's or a Q. She shows me Q4o and takes down the pot.
I knew if I raised the rock would fold which he did, and I felt at the time that with two pair, I had sufficient pot odds against the calling station having a queen, so I got greedy for that one last bet and lost the pot. Of course a few hands later I am wondering if I did have correct pot odds? Maybe I should have let calling station and the rock fight it out?
How do I determine the pot odds I need against someone not having an overcard to pair the board that can beat my hand with a small pair one the board?
Are you asking if you should have bet for value on the river against someone who MAY have a pair larger than 9s but will pay you off with lots of weaker hands? If so, this is NOT a "pot odds" question.
Pot odds are used when you have a lesser hand and are faced with a bet. Betting for value is only indirectly affected by size of the pot: the larger the pot the more likely the opponent will call with a lesser hand so you should bet for value more often.
If you do not fear a raise and there is no profit in checking, then its a "good" bet if you are called more often with a lesser hand than with a better hand.
IMO, you made a solid bet-for-value on the river IF the loose opponent WOULD have bet a Q on the flop since she will call with any 9 or 8 and you only fear TT or JJ, which are unlikely since she didn't raise pre-flop. You made a bad bet if she WILL check a Q, since there are lots of those possible hands.
I must have taken the wrong approach. I saw it as I am getting ~10:1 pot odds for my bet. I then figured the odds of calling station having a queen were ~15:1.
At the moment it seemed like a good bet, then of course it didn't quite fit right.
I think I understand now, that if I looked at purely as X:x, as a value bet, it is correct. Otherwise there is no meaningful relationship as to what's in the pot to whether a player has a certain card.
Do I understand this correctly now?
I may have played the river wrong - she may not have bet, but greed got in the way....
In a pure sense a decision is a good one when your reward times the chances of winning that reward is greater than your risk times your chances of losing that risk.
Lets say raising for both you and the opponent is out of the question. If the opponent bets you can call or fold. Once the opponent checks you can bet or show-down, and the opponent will always call with a better hand than yours so you cannot bluff; therefore betting does NOT increase your chances of winning...
When you consider CALLING your risk is one bet and your reward is the size of the pot (since you don't get any of the pot when you fold). Therefore, comparing the size of the pot with the bet is called "Pot Odds" and IS relavant. Since pots are generally quite big compared to the final bet your call doesn't have to be correct very often in order for it to be a good decision.
When you consider BETTING your risk is one bet and your reward is also one bet (the pot is NOT a "reward" since you retain your equity in it when you show your hand down). Therefore, its a good bet only if the opponent will call more often with a bad hand than with a good one. If he'll call when he has you beat 1 time, never call with a worse hand, and fold the other 99 times then its a BAD bet. Notice it doesn't matter that he's 99:1 against having you beat and it doesn't matter the size of the pot. The long odds of him calling only reduces how "bad" the bet is, not whether its bad.
Does that answer your question?
PS. These decisions quickly get complicated when bluffing, raising and inducing bluffs are options.
Okay, I think I understand now. Thanks!
Run 5 Million hands simulation (How about the Long Run?)
The only positive EV after running 5M hands of sim:
That’s all it is with positive EV, the rest have negative EV!
Now,.., my question is this: Why play any other hand?
Why we have in some books way over 70 or so starting hands when the majority of them have a negative EV?
It will be considered to tight of play if only the above starting hands would be used in real live game?
From the total of 169 possible 2 cards combination only 24 have a pos EV, so another words only 15% or so are good for proffit.
I may be wrong in my logic but how about this being the only starting hands in TH?
Why play anything else if the EV is negative in the long run?
Almost all (if not all)of the starting hands that you mentioned would be within the first 4 or 5 starting hand groups and most books really only advocate playing hands within those groups (most of the time). However there is also a significant psychological aspect to poker and it is smart to play a not so good starting hand every once in a while so you don't become predictable. A predicatable player will not be able to maximize his/her profits.
I don't know how u did your sim, but it seems rather flawed to me, you have K8s but not AJo ?
thats only one of many examples
A hand with a -EV could become one with a pos EV if played in the right situation. For example, if you're on the button and have noticed that the BB never defends against a raise, then raising with almost anything here may prove to be a pos EV play if it's only you and him in the pot. This is an extreme example, but there are a million different ways that playing a garbage hand is profitable. For instance, you may want to raise with a small suited connector UTG as a way to set the stage for longer term profit goals. The -EV play you're making now may help you to make several +EV players later that night, so it really isn't a -EV play if you look at the long term results.
There are a lot of hands that you did not mention that have enourmous positive E.V in different situations. For instance smaller pocket pairs Ie 22-66 can be a positive E.V play in late position with 7 people in, you are getting great odds to play them, especially without a raise. If you are first in on the button with a9o or a8o and the blinds are tight, head to head your hand is great and has a positive E.V, so raise in order to either knock out hte blinds or make it head to head.
It is the situation that determines the E.V of a particular hand, and unfortunately a simulator can't always recreate every situation.
89s, 9Ts, are great multiway hands, whereas hands like KTo or KJo are not, their E.V changes with respect to the number of people in. However, in a shorthanded (two or three handed) game, KTo and KJo would have a huge pos. EV associated with them, whereas 89s would not.
Just remember, everything is relative to the situation.
For example, AA has a ~31% advantage 10 handed (??I think), but an 81% advantage head to head. As you can see E.V changes with situation.. Your simulator probably emulated one situation, and those hands are the pos.e.v for that particular situation.
As I am sure you are aware, HE is very much a positional game. If you want to find an approximation of the expected EV of all possible hands, then you should set up the simulation so that you can determine which hands have a positive EV at each position, relative to the button. While this will not exactly simulate human players, it will be a lot more informative. In addition, you may want to run the same simulation with tight, loose, aggressive and passive players and observe the different results.
If you want to try the positional thing, then pick your players to match the type of game you want to analyze. Make sure one of the players plays a strategy similar to your own and use that player’s results to formulate your theory of which hands have a positive expected value.
What you do is to freeze the button on seat one and run five million hands then save the results. Next move the button to position two and repeat the process, again saving the results for later study. Continue the process until you have moved the button all the way around the table and stored the results from each run.
You can now review the results by looking at the player’s statistics that represented you. Now, when you review the results, you will find which cards are best to play from which position based upon a computer player, similar to you, playing at a table similar to the games at which you play.
Card Player on sept. 5 1997 printed a top 20 list , of the best hands in holdem.
The lowest pair is 99
The lowest suited hands is A9s and J10s
The only 3 not suited hands rated is AKo , AQo, KQo
For what is worth i woould trust card players " cards speak " artical
If there is only an interest in how well card pairs perform in general then I agree with you Dave; the Card Player article is probably a good source. However, studying the win rate of card pairs in general rather than from a positional perspective, does not help much when formulating a positional strategy.
I was just suggesting a way to run the simulation that would be more helpful in the formulation of a, real-world, positional play strategy and more useful in general. It was just a suggestion, no big deal.
I can't tell if you're kidding. The Cards Speak" column is a running joke of slightly interesting trivia. Not even its author, to my knowledge, recommends adjusting one's play based on what he writes.
So you have a top 20 list. Why 20 instead of 17 or 50? Based on what, hand winning percentages dollars won per hand? And how should you adjust it for various postions against various numbers of opponents performing various combinations of prior acts in games that are variously tight, loose, aggressive, passive, crazy, rockish, short-handed, big rake, no rake, 2/3 sb, 1/3 sb and others?
Turbo does a good job of adjusting for a lot of these factors. Someone who spends hundreds of hours with it might develop a real expertise for the first round of hold 'em. But it takes a lot more than memorizing a list.
A couple situations came up during a session I played this weekend. A poker expert friend of mine disagreed with how I played. He is a kick-ass no limit player but it's been a while since he focused on limit play. In other words, I disagree with him and think I made the right moves! :)
I would like to see what the forum thinks about these plays.
Hand #1: 3 limpers, the button raises, I fold A8o in the big blind after the small blind calls.
Hand #2: I open raise in late-middle position with 89s against one limper. The flop comes T8x. I bet the flop and turn. The river comes a jack making the board T8xxJ. Now the limper bets into me. He is tight and passive. I fold with approximately five big bets in the pot.
I think you played correctly on both scenarios. I would've done the same.
I think both of your plays are correct and I don't think its even close.
I call too much but would probably call the raise.
If he had a draw he just made something. If he didn't have a draw he must have a pair of xx's and would tend to check-call hoping you'll steal. You can call only if he's the kind of guy who thinks you may lay down a pair of Ts or 8s to his "obvious" pair of Jacks, is willing to make an out-of-tempo bluff AND will play a hand featuring an "x" on the previous 3 rounds the way he did.
Not likely. Fold.
I agree with your first play, your second play is more aggresive then I would play. I would have folded the 98s before the flop it there was only one TIGHT PASSIVE limper. You are definitely behind. If he is tight and passive, he may fold when you show aggression on the flop, but once he calls the flop it is time check. If he bets into me on the river I would probably release if the player is passive and call it down if the player is not.
Just my opinions,
In hand #1 I think this is a close fold against a typical early raiser and cold callers (due to the likelihood of being dominated) but against limpers and a button raiser I would usually call unless the opponents are tough or somewhat likely to limp reraise. But IMO it is close enough so that folding doesn’t give up much with a hand that does not play well in big pots with likely pressure if you flop an ace.
In hand #2 I think it is a pretty cheeky raise against one tight limper unless it is someone who will give up when he misses the flop AND all the players behind you are tight AND the blinds are tight. In other words, I hate your flop raise unless you like threading needles in the dark. Given the action, I think folding is probably correct on the river.
You could take Alex to the woodshed and strap him silly in limit. He'd tell you the same.
Reasons I'd call A8o in the BB: drugs, alcohol, boredom, playing stuck.... You were in the Alex aura, that's all. Or maybe downwind during a break. ;)
The second hand requires a good read. If the other guy intended to call a bet, e.g. with A8s or QTs, but knows he'd fold to a raise, he should bet into you (and you may be best off raising!). So here if Alex got a read I'd go with him.
For the rest of the 2+2 world, Alex Roberts won a seat in the big one yesterday. A name to keep in mind.
In the 1st scenario, MY decision would have largely depended on the texture of the table so far. If it has been anywhere above average-aggression, the fold is probably correct against 5 other players, since you'll possibly pay 3 or more bets just to see the flop, and be stuck with a weak ace should you flop one. Loose-passive table, on the other hand, would probably get a call from me, since the button would PROBABLY be raising with 1 of 2 types of hands - 1) a suited connector or good drawing cards, putting more money in the pot should his draw hit, or 2) an overpair. I don't see how raising with any other type of hand is a good idea, considering he will give others enough odds to draw post-flop due to pot size.
But let's move on to your 2nd scenario where I actually disagree with your preflop play. I just don't see why you raised 89s in _possibly middle_, but even late position against 1 limper and the blinds. Sure, it's possible the blinds will fold to your raise, but do you really want to go heads-up with what seems to be an EARLY/middle position tight-passive limper with your 9-high DRAWING cards?
I would either call or fold. As for the fold, it was probably correct, unless the project tight-passive image is indeed capable of bluffing you out of what he thinks is just a high card.
Best of luck, slay.
IMO, your first play depends on the table. If all 3 limpers were early, or the button only raises in a field of limpers with AA-QQ or AK-AT, then I'd fold. Otherwise, unless you're likely to fear a reraise from the limpers, you're getting 11-1 on your call. (Very unlikely anyone will fold.) Easy call. Proceed with caution if an A flops.
I don't like your second preflop play at all. 89s is a drawing hand if there ever was one, so why raise? If you're going in at all (which is not that great an idea, anyway, with one tight limper and 4-5 people still to act behind you), you want as many callers as you can get. The bet on the flop is good, but the turn is debatable-- you may be better off just checking it through and betting/calling if bet into on the river. The laydown on the river is absolutely correct. Tight-passive players simply do NOT bet into previously demonstrated strength on the river without improving from the turn (usually, significantly improving).
I agree with most of what has been said regarding the second hand - very questionable pre-flop raise, but a fairly easy laydown against the type of player you describe.
As to the first hand, unless you had good reason to fear a re-raise from one of the limpers this SEEMS like an easy call. (I confess to being one of those who over-rates suited Aces, but I don't think I am over-rating it in this situation.)
You have five other opponent and already have one bet invested. This may be a leak on mine, but I call here as long as I can count on getting some action if I "get there", unless these players are the type that are going to ram and jam the flop and turn making it very expensive for you to draw to your hand.
Of late I have been paying alot more attention to "relative position" - in other words, where you sit in relation to the raisor. If the raise had come from first in (your immediate left) and had attracted four other callers, I would be TEMPTED to play if he showed me AA; I would definitely play against almost any other hand.
This is even more clear-cut if the raisor is one of those who feels "honor bound" to bet out on the flop.
Having said all that, folding under the circumstances you describe will probably not cost you a fortune over the course of a lifetime - but I do think it will cost you something.
And you did ask whether we agreed with the decision, not HOW good or bad it may have been.
Hope I was of some help.
- J D
Without going into ads, could someone list the online sites that are safe on at least perceived as such?
you started a thread a while ago regarding how one incorporates the possibility of being ahead into one's odds calculation, but i don't think the thread was every pursued. i would be curious to hear more of your thoughts on the subject.
I am assuming you have read the original thread, and I won't repeat that part of it.
If I have the thread correct, it was regarding counting the percentage chance you are ahead and adding it to your drawing chances from the turn to the river.
An example how this idea applies more broadly: suppose a learning player is on the button with 22, five callers. He reasons that he will call "because of the odds (including implied) to draw to a set AND the small chance I am leading." Notice that if there is no overpair to the dueces here, that they are "leading". Now I am sure that everyone can see the problem with this reasoning. (Whether the call is correct is not the issue.)
So taking this after the flop the implications are clear for a broad range of situations. If you look back at a "hillbilly" thread that you were involved in, you will see how this applies to that situation.
Im sure you see it, simple enough, so I won't go on about it.
You will see this mistake (expressed or implied) in several posts here right now, if you look.
Sorry for the delay in responding.
The possibility of leading 5 opponents preflop with your 22 is of course irrelevent and falty reasoning. Here is what I'm wondering about, though...
Let's say you're heads up on the turn and there is a bet to you. You have some mediocre hand and some mediocre draw, and there is some probability greater than zero that your mediocre hand (say middle pair) is leading (i.e. that your opponenet is either bluffing or semi-bluffing). It is faulty (as you have pointed out) to simply add the percentage chance that you are in the lead, because there may also be a bet on the river. Nevertheless, there is definitely still some equity in the chance that you are ahead (you may get a free showdown, or you may get an "overlay" on a crying river call). So the question become how one accounts for this equity. Given ten minutes, a pencil and paper, I would write out a decision tree analysis with my various assumptions. But at the poker table this is of course a luxury we do not have. So how do you account for the equity embedded in possibly being in the lead on rounds prior to the river?
The way I account for it is through a series of fulcrums. The fulcrums are middle points where both "disneyland"(extremely favorable) and "doomsday" (extremely unfavorable) assumptions (and all the other ones too) tend to counterbalance. The fact that many apparent negative assumptions are INHERENTLY offset is often not understood by some. These fulcrum points try to be slightly profitable. In that situation that you describe I would have a general fulcrum point that would already incorporate (I hope) the fact that the hand may not be a call on the river.
But to get there you have to develop basic ones and understand the inner workings of them to execute them in a game. What I have told you above will not help you.
To do it sans fulcrum, account for for the times that your opponent will check the river with a hand you can beat(Sklansky neglected this part) and multiply it by the chance your hand is good on the turn and add it to your draw %. That should be close (it doesnt account for things like bluff raises,implied odds, the river card, and future play et al), I think, but NEVER trust my math (even word math) or anything else I post for that matter. And try doing that at the table, and be certain the board is read right, the pot is correctly accounted for the tears in your eyes from the last beat.
In practical terms, the more likely your opponent will bet the river the less value the hand has as a made hand, if you do not plan to call.
Now how about trying to think of a way to play the hands in order to avoid this situation...hmmm.
Maybe Louie Landale or others will help you out more if my explanations are insufficient or dead wrong.
You wrote: "To do it sans fulcrum, account for for the times that your opponent will check the river with a hand you can beat(Sklansky neglected this part) and multiply it by the chance your hand is good on the turn and add it to your draw %. That should be close (it doesnt account for things like bluff raises,implied odds, the river card, and future play et al), I think, but NEVER trust my math (even word math) or anything else I post for that matter."
Most notably missing from your equation (as you yourself have noted) is play on the river card. Here, for example, is something that your calculation does not take into account but that needs to be considered. Let's say you call on the turn and he fires again on the river. There will sometimes be enough $ in the pot to make a crying call +EV, and your equation does not take this into account. In other words, in some situations your mediocre made hand has equity not only if your opponent checks the river but also (less of course, zero in many but not all cases) when he bets.
You wrote: "Now how about trying to think of a way to play the hands in order to avoid this situation...hmmm."
I assume that you are referring to raising on the turn, which is a play I have come to use more and more in my own game.
It's nice to see people actually thinking.
Anon posted, "There will sometimes be enough $ in the pot to make a crying call +EV, and your equation does not take this into account. In other words, in some situations your mediocre made hand has equity not only if your opponent checks the river but also (less of course, zero in many but not all cases) when he bets."
My "equation" intends to deal with the case where you can not call on the river (without improvement). In this case, there is no value in your made hand if you cannot call the river. What you are talking about is different.
In the case you are describing the increase in pot size makes the hand a correct call on the river. When the increase in pot size will be sufficient to make a call on the river correct, then the "made hand" portion is included with the draw percentage.
Another case might be where the river card changes things. In this case, essentially your opponent "missed" his draw (maybe you put him on either a flush or overpair, and can call the river if no flush comes), which is pretty much the same as if you hit yours.
I am really not certain if we are on the same page here or I am understanding your points.
If I am not answering well, give a specific example and we'll go from there. I will give it some thought if you havent figured it out yourself yet. I can't promise to be around on the weekend though.
And I hope you realise this stuff is seriously obscure. :)
Yes, we are on the same page. And yes, I do realize that the topic a little obscure, but it is still important IMO.
You wrote: "In the case you are describing the increase in pot size makes the hand a correct call on the river. When the increase in pot size will be sufficient to make a call on the river correct, then the "made hand" portion is included with the draw percentage."
So let's say you do your calculation and decide that the pots needs to be giving you X:1 in order to continue. That begs the question of how you decide what the pot is giving you. Let me explain where the ambiguity comes in...
If you are looking at the made portion of your hand, then you would want to look at effective odds (i.e. lower the direct pot odds you are getting because of the possible bet you'd have to call on the river). But if you are looking at the draw portion of your hand, then direct pot odds are actually overestimating what you need (because there are some implied odds if you hit). So pot odds seem to be the wrong metric for evaluating each portion of your hand. Should one just use pot odds and assume that the effective odds on the made hand and the implied odds of the drawing hand cancel out?
While I know that we're on the same page, I'll give you an example situation that a friend of mine was in. It was a 15/30 game. 3 players limped to him and he limped on the button with pocket sixes. The SB called and the BB raised. My friend knew the BB to be someone who would raise in this situation with not only big pairs and slick but also with medium and large suited connectors (and would try to steal on the flop if missed). The flop came 10 7 2 r. The BB bet and all folded to my friend. So what should his analysis in this situation look like? Let's assume that the BB will fire again on the turn no matter what his hand but may or may not continue the bluff on the river. Of course, this specific hand is not important, but I think that it is in the spirit of our discussion.
Suppose your opponent could hold AA, KK or AK. You have 66. Now this is easy right? With a queen high board or less (excluding flushes and straights )we are now a 4:3 favorite on the flop (with no more cards to come). This simple example will work as the hand ranges increase as well.
Determine the opponents hand range and then compare it to the board, figure out what the odds are you are leading and if you are what outs your opponent has. In the simple case above, your opponents outs would be any A or K, so your life is easy- fold if one of these show up. In a more complicated example, the idea is the same.
So in the case you cited, suppose your friend's opp hand range is TT-AA, AK, AQ, AJsuited and KQsuited (for the sake of argument). This makes it 38-30 for a non pair (i didnt account for the ten on board). This means that 66 is the favorite. Now when the turn comes and its an A, now what? its 4-64 against you (only KQsuited is not there and even that has 12 outs on the sixes), which means here, you cannot call on the river without a six coming unless the pot is at least 4-64 (on the river with no changes). So if the pot was large enough to call based on the fact that the sixes were good, plus the 2 outs to a six, you wouldn't use the "sixes are good" portion just the 4.2%chance of the six. See? Unless the river pot would be sufficient to call then it is not part of the equation, no more so than if you planned to fold your made draw then you wouldn't use the draw portion of your hand.
Note above, I am not accounting for straights and flushes and future betting which could indicate different hand ranges (someone might be more likely to check AK and bet the pairs for example).
Now I realize that doesn't answer the question entirely, because its too complex to get into, so I would suggest this. Make a fulcrum. That is, set a typical hand range for an opponent headsup and then have a miniminum profitable "fulcrum" to continue. Now when faced with or similar situations in the future, you will know-against a typical hand range I must continue on unless an Ace hits or whatever. Now if you understand the fulcrum, you can adjust for looser or tighter players, or for different boards. This will free your mind to look at other things during the game then math. Understand each facet of the fulcrum, like the hand ranges, board types, pot size, and go from there.
Ok I gotta eat.
One thing you must consider when you are deciding whether to continue with the hand, based in part on the chance that you are ahead, is your effective odds. Let's say it's heads up on the turn. If I say "I believe I am ahead of my opponent, therefore I am going to call him", I have to call him not only on the turn, but the river too (assuming he keeps betting). Now if I also have a mediocre draw, I can add in the chances of making my draw to my overall chances of winning and adjust my effective odds accordingly. But if you call the turn but fold the river, then all you were really doing on the turn was drawing to your mediocre draw. If that's what you are going to do, don't count the chances of your being ahead when you call the turn bet.
Another example: Say you have QQ, but you think your opponent might have AA or KK. It's been a multiway pot, but on the flop everyone but you and him folded. The board is jack high crap. Now if he bets, you can count in the chance of your having the best hand. If he has AA or KK, you have a very mediocre draw to say the least. But if you think he might be betting AK, AQ, or AJ, then this would change a probable fold into a probable call. But still, you would have to call him on the river too if he bets again. If you call the turn but fold the river, all you did on the turn was draw to a two outer.
In the end, you can count the chance of your being ahead when deciding whether to continue with a hand, (with more than one card to come), but use this chance to adjust your EFFECTIVE ODDS, not just your current pot odds.
Dave in Cali
Dave posted, 'If I say "I believe I am ahead of my opponent, therefore I am going to call him",'.
In this case one might consider raising or betting yourself. I suspect Anon was asking about a case where one did not have enough odds to call based only on the chance you may be leading.
Dave posted, ' But if you call the turn but fold the river, then all you were really doing on the turn was drawing to your mediocre draw. If that's what you are going to do, don't count the chances of your being ahead when you call the turn bet. '
This is mostly correct, but as Anon pointed out, there is some chance the opponent will check through the river, allowing you to win a pot that you wouldn't have called if bet. Notice here, that the chance he checks through the river is not the important thing, but the times he checks through with a hand you can beat. If checks through %90 of the time you may think that is a good thing but if by some quirk he always checks when he is strong but keeps betting on a bluff then his checking does you no good (unless of course you know this and checkraise). (My example is extreme and not likely to happen, just used to illustrate.)
I realise that you did not have the benefit of the original post to which Anon was referring.
Dave and backdoor,
backdoor wrote: "I suspect Anon was asking about a case where one did not have enough odds to call based only on the chance you may be leading."
I am of course talking about a situation where the effective odds of your mediocre made hand are insufficient to justify continuing and the odds (including implied) of you making your draw are insufficient to justify continuing, but where these two things together may or may not justify continuing.
Roy Cooke has written that he counts a backdoor flush draw as one out. From an odds perspective, the probability of making the hand are more like 2 outs. Is that his way of discounting for having to pay a bet on the turn (i.e. effective odds)?
I remember that Lou Kreiger wrote this same approximation in one of his columns.
The (approximately) .0416 (23-1) probability of hitting a backdoor flush is a lot closer to the .0426 (22.5-1) probability of hitting "one out" with two cards to come than the .084 (10.9-1) probability of hitting either of two outs.
The flush draw is more expensive, however, because you can hit one out on the turn, but you always need two cards for the backdoor. On the other hand, this is mitigated in big multiway pots by the overlay that comes with picking up the draw on the turn, and by your occasional ability to fold on the turn if you fail to pick up the draw. Also, what looks like a double-backdoor piece of garbage on the flop can turn into a 1/3 shot at the pot on the turn.
It's a complicated problem that's highly dependent on the specific situation. Sklansky has written (PG&L) that the backdoor needs to win 27 bets to be worth pursuing by itself. Since you'll rarely do this, more useful rules of thumb are (1) to ignore it unless you have a reasonable shot at 20+ bets unless (2) you have another draw that would otherwise be a marginally negative call or (3) an outside chance that your hand is best.
Thinking of it as one out is useful when you have something like a gutshot draw or a pair. Thinking of it as one out with just an overcard or less will mislead you.
Loose passive game.
Very passive, One weak tight kid in BB. He showed 2 laydowns, so I know what I can move him off (he doesn't like kicker trouble or overcards) I raise a limper with TT, weak tight calls in BB, Limper calls.
BB bets, limper calls, I raise (It's one of those weak tight I wanna know where I'm at and if I get raised I'll fold type bets. I KNOW I can push this kid off QQ, JJ, probably even Kx, yeah he's that bad, it's unlikely he had QQ or JJ though, I thought 9x) Kid folds, Limper calls. This guy is a calling station, who knows?
Turn is a Q, no flush possible. Check, I check. I'm not sure why I was a bitch all of the sudden. I "got a feeling". Im usually very aggressive. I was a bit afraid of this guy having some gutshot that the Q fills or gives him a pair that he for sure wont lay down. I figure I'll get a bluff on the river or lose less by checking here.
River is a blank, limper bets, I call.
Next hand worth noting:
BB seems solid everyone else loose/passive.
I limp UTG with 7s7c.
4 limp behind, both blinds come along.
blinds check, I bet, 2 call behind me, SB folds, BB calls.
BB check, I bet one guy calls, BB (check) raises, Now what? 89? AA? 66? 55? AK? AQ?
I re-raised. I have a loose aggressive image.
hand one, guy shows QQ, kid whines and wants to see my hand... kid says he had JJ, i show.
BB caps it, old guy calls.
BB check, I bet, old guy folds, BB calls. I show 777AA, BB shows 89 and mucks.
my thoughts here honestly were i knew he had a straight, and i also knew I would fill. that's it. it is retarded, i know. once in a while i play hunches. assuming Im a rational player what do i do on the turn?
If you knew he had a straight on the turn you should have called. The pot is 9.5 BB and you have 10 outs, so definetly worth calling.
 Very reasonable check on the turn since these calling stations are going to call again, especially if you plan to snap off a bluff on the river.
 I don't see much reason to encourage the guy behind you to fold his stiff Ace. While you may be a favorite to have the better hand its not by all that much. Go for the over-call on the turn since the caller isn't much of a threat. Now, if you suspect the calling may have some kind of gut shot go ahead and drop him.
Notes From An Inexperienced Chilli Taster Named Mike Haven, Who Was Visiting Texas:
Recently I was honored to be selected as a judge at a chilli cook-off because no one else wanted to do it. The original person called in sick at the last moment, and I happened to be standing there at the judge's table asking directions to the beer wagon when the call came.
I was assured by the other two judges, both native Texans, that the chilli wouldn't be all that spicy, and they told me I could have free beer during the tasting, so I accepted.
Here are the scorecards from the event:
Chili #1: Mike's Maniac Mobster Monster Chilli JUDGE ONE: A little too heavy on tomato. Amusing kick. JUDGE TWO: Nice, smooth tomato flavor. Very mild. MIKE: Holy smokes, what is this stuff? You could remove dried paint from your driveway with it. Took me two beers to put the flames out. Hope that's the worst one. These hicks are crazy.
Chili #2: Arthur's Afterburner Chilli JUDGE ONE: Smoky with a hint of pork. Slight Jalapeno tang. JUDGE TWO: Exciting BBQ flavor; needs more peppers to be taken seriously. MIKE: Keep this out of reach of children! I'm not sure what I am supposed to taste besides pain. I had to wave off two people who wanted to give me the Heimlich maneuver. Shoved my way to the front of the beer line.
Chili #3: Fred's Famous Burn Down the Barn Chilli JUDGE ONE: Excellent firehouse chilli! Great kick. Needs more beans. JUDGE TWO: A beanless chilli. A bit salty; good use of red peppers. MIKE: This has got to be a joke. Call the EPA; I've located a uranium spill. My nose feels like I have been snorting Drano. Everyone knows the routine by now and got out of my way so I could make it to the beer wagon. Barmaid pounded me on the back; now my backbone is in the front part of my chest.
Chili #4: Bubba's Black Magic JUDGE ONE: Black bean chilli with almost no spice. Disappointing. JUDGE TWO: Hint of lime in the black beans. Good side dish for fish or other mild foods; not much of a chilli. MIKE: I felt something scraping across my tongue, but was unable to taste it. Sally, the barmaid, was standing behind me with fresh refills so I wouldn't have to dash over to see her.
Chili #5: Linda's Legal Lip Remover JUDGE ONE: Meaty, strong chilli. Cayenne peppers freshly ground, adding considerable kick. Very impressive. JUDGE TWO: Chilli using shredded beef; could use more tomato. Must admit the cayenne peppers make a strong statement. MIKE: My ears are ringing, and I can no longer focus my eyes. I expelled gas and four people behind me needed paramedics. The contestant seemed hurt when I told her that her chilli had given me brain damage. Sally saved my tongue by pouring beer directly on it from a pitcher. Sort of irritates me that one of the other judges asked me to stop screaming.
Chili #6: Vera's Very Vegetarian Variety JUDGE ONE: Thin, yet bold vegetarian variety chilli. Good balance of spice and peppers. JUDGE TWO: The best yet. Aggressive use of peppers, onions, and garlic. Superb. MIKE: My intestines are now a straight pipe filled with gaseous flames. No one seems inclined to stand behind me except Sally.
Chili #7: Susan's Screaming Sensation Chilli JUDGE ONE: A mediocre chilli with too much reliance on canned peppers. JUDGE TWO: Ho hum. Tastes as if the chef threw in canned chili peppers at the last moment. I should note that I am worried about Judge No. 3. He appears to be in a bit of distress. MIKE: You could put a grenade in my mouth and pull the pin, and I wouldn't feel it. I've lost the sight in one eye, and the world sounds like it is made of rushing water. My clothes are covered with chilli that slid unnoticed out of my mouth at some point. Good! At autopsy they'll know what killed me. I've decided to stop breathing: It's too painful, and I'm not getting any oxygen anyway. If I need air, I'll just suck it in through the 4-inch hole in my stomach.
Chili #8: Helen's Mount St. Chilli JUDGE ONE: A perfect ending. This is a nice blended chilli, safe for all; not too bold but spicy enough to declare its existence. JUDGE TWO: This final entry is a good, balanced chilli, neither mild nor hot. Sorry to see that most of it was lost when Judge Number 3 fell and pulled the chilli pot on top of himself. MIKE:(Editor's note: Judge No. 3 was unable to report.)
So, your reality of the situation (hot chili) was not the other guy's reality (mild chili). That's a common situation including at the poker table. Keep in mind they will act in accordance with THEIR reality, not the actual facts, and will certainly not act in accordance with YOUR reality.
To predict their actions you need to understand their reality.
(In another thread, Nate posted about a hand I played and he was leary about naming names so he referred to me as "an expert." That made me uncomfortable, and I wasn't sure why until I started typing away just now.)
What does "expert" mean at ring-game limit hold'em? When we started out, every player at the table looked like an expert, right? Now, some players look at me as a chump, and others think I'm a friggin genious. All this means is that I've moved up in the local "perception hierarchy." I watch players move up (and sometimes down) this ladder all the time. To me, "expert" at ring-game poker is purely in the eye of the beholder. After all, the only way to REALLY know who deserves such a lofty title would be if all of our W/L records were public and accurate. And that ain't gonna happen.
I scrape by because I'm lucky to be surrounded by careless opponents. If the games weren't soft, I'd have a job. My "expertise" was in choosing my apartment.
In short, it's Einstein all over again. Every observer is equal and legit. There is no absolute point of reference for "expertdom."
I think perhaps you confuse "expert" with "feared opponent". Zee is an expert even of Joe Shmow doesn't recognize him and thinks Zee is a shmuck. And the 2nd best player in the world is an expert even if the best player "knows" he's a shmuck; relatively speaking.
I disagree that the W/L records define the expert. I think poker is one activity where an expert might not do as well as someone who has less knowledge and skill.
To me, an expert is someone who has a high level of understanding of the game, both the math and the strategies. This might not include a top player who has some innate ability to beat the game but doesn't really know why.
Due to the luck factor in poker, expert play doesn't always pay off.
An expert, by definition, does better than one who is not an expert. An expert golfer, for example, shoots a lower score than one who in inexpert. There might be some holes where the poorer player shoots a lower score, and there might be some rounds where this happens. But over the course of many rounds, the expert has a lower score and does better.
Luck has nothing to do with it. There is indeed a luck factor in both golf and poker, more in poker than in golf. But there is no question that a player who is more expert than I am would, on bad days, lose less than I would and, on good days, win more than I would. Conversely, I will do better on goods days than a player who plays less expertly than I do and I will do less badly on bad days.
Luck is the residue of design.
"An expert golfer, for example, shoots a lower score than one who in inexpert."
By this definition Tiger Woods is the only golf expert. Sometimes.
I'm defining an expert as someone who does something well. He won't always come out on top, but his expertise make him better than someone else with less expertise. And yes, Tiger Woods is the most expert golfer in the world. Some days or weeks the #2 player, or the #102 player beats him, but he beats them more often.
Sorry Andy, I was just being ... Me!
Thanks for the posts. I just read them all and it looks like I hold the minority view, again.
Brett wrote: < By whose judgement? His own? Yours? Mine? If 1000 players were lined up and each of them cast a ballot of "expert" or "non expert" on all the others, would we be able to figure out who the "real experts" are? What if Joe was voted as an expert, yet you "know for sure in your heart of hearts" that he isn't?
As to instructional writers such as Ray Zee, yes, from my view, he is an expert. But only because I played with him for a brief while. I don't think that writing books automatically qualifies someone as an "expert," although it does qualify them for a more easily defined title, "authority."
< "Might?" More vagueness. If Joe is beating the game over the long run, how the heck can I know if he knows why before I say he is a "winning non-expert?"
I don't think analogies such as golf apply here because the scorecard remains unchanged no matter who looks at it.
I think we agree that many non-playing decisions weigh heavily on our results, say, game selection, and not blowing a week of profit in a few hours a tired play. This means than an "expert player" could be a "non-expert" money-maker, unable to survive full time at poker.
Anyway, I know I'm on this ice here because the meaning of "poker expert" is intuitively obvious, yet still it bothers me somehow and I felt like babbling about it. Thanks again.
By whose judgement? His own? Yours? Mine? If 1000 players were lined up and each of them cast a ballot of "expert" or "non expert" on all the others, would we be able to figure out who the "real experts" are? What if Joe was voted as an expert, yet you "know for sure in your heart of hearts" that he isn't?
As to instructional writers such as Ray Zee, yes, from my view, he is an expert. But only because I played with him for a brief while. I don't think that writing books automatically qualifies someone as an "expert," although it does qualify them for a more easily defined title, "authority."
< "Might?" More vagueness. If Joe is beating the game over the long run, how the heck can I know if he knows why before I say he is a "winning non-expert?"
I don't think analogies such as golf apply here because the scorecard remains unchanged no matter who looks at it.
I think we agree that many non-playing decisions weigh heavily on our results, say, game selection, and not blowing a week of profit in a few hours a tired play. This means than an "expert player" could be a "non-expert" money-maker, unable to survive full time at poker.
Anyway, I know I'm on this ice here because the meaning of "poker expert" is intuitively obvious, yet still it bothers me somehow and I felt like babbling about it. Thanks again.
"Might?" More vagueness. If Joe is beating the game over the long run, how the heck can I know if he knows why before I say he is a "winning non-expert?"
I don't think analogies such as golf apply here because the scorecard remains unchanged no matter who looks at it.
I think we agree that many non-playing decisions weigh heavily on our results, say, game selection, and not blowing a week of profit in a few hours a tired play. This means than an "expert player" could be a "non-expert" money-maker, unable to survive full time at poker.
Anyway, I know I'm on this ice here because the meaning of "poker expert" is intuitively obvious, yet still it bothers me somehow and I felt like babbling about it. Thanks again.
An expert is someone who has a high level of conscious understanding about the game. So much so that if there were an openning at a major university for "professor of poker strategy and theory", he would easily get the job.
This does not nescessarily mean that he can make money and be effective in actual play, though. The professor (an expert of "marketing strategy") who gave Fred Smith a grade of "C" for his term paper about a delivery company that uses a "hub" in Memphis, would not have been capable of creating a company called Federal Express.
The West Point strategy experts that put Eisenhower, Patton, and Marshall at the bottom one third of their classes couldn't have been able to win a war involving real weapons, people, and opponents.
Does this mean that an expert can't be a winning player? No. But a winning player need not be an expert (defined as someone with a high level of conscious understanding about the game). All he needs is a basic foundation about the game, intuition, open-mindedness, and discipline. Can an expert develop these traits? Yes. And a couple have. Harrington, Zee, Reese, Seidel, just to name a few.
You should refer to Mason Malmuth as an "expert" on poker.
Does mean to say that Mason Malmuth is an expert "on" Poker and not necessarily an expert player? For example, there are many excellent tennis coaches who could not beat their ranked junior player. They know the game very well, can teach and demonstrate techniques of tennis strokes and can SEE all kinds of things in a players overall game. Yet they may be just an average 5.0 tennis player.
One reason why I have had good results with poker is that I have a knack for choosing good games. I will walk around the room and scout games while I am waiting, or between hands, and I will get transferred to a better game if the one I am in doesn't look as juicy as another. Often times I am the only one at the table that has any clue what good poker strategy really is. I am an "expert" relative to the terrible competition at my table. But a true expert plays well against very good competition. HE is also aware of not only what he is doing, but why he is doing it. It takes a great deal of study and thinking, not to mention experience, to attain true expertdom at poker. MM, RZ and DS have achieved this status, so have some notable others.
I think the real goal for the common man, us mere mortals, should be to be an expert relative to the competition we are playing against. This shows that we have chosen a good game to play in, which is probably the most important thing to being a winner at this game. I am not so concerned about being labeled and "expert" as I am with having good results. I don't care if joe blow thinks I am a fish, let him think what he wants. He'll still be thinking I'm a fish when I cash out a huge stack of chips if I have anything to say about it.
Dave in Cali
as an attempt at a serious answer, probably someone who can play in any type of game (short handed, full table,tight,loose, etc.)
i mean, we've all heard of the 'short handed expert' and such, and i think by 'expert' we just mean 'all around expert'.
this is probably one of those areas where you can only exclude someone from being an expert; for example, you can say hes a good player, but he cant play short handed (he gets up or he just plays real bad).
Defining "expert" is impossible for Nate to make that judgement without studying your thought processes in hands that you have posted and your responses to hands that have been put out on this forum. Plus he met you and played with you. I've never met quite a few posters but I would consider them expert analyzers of hands that have been posted. So for Nate and quite a few posters you played that hand expertly, but to others who posted questions for you to that hand they may have thought more expertly than you. But it doesn't mean that your a winner or a loser it just means you played the hand well. The thing I liked about the hand was the thinking of each poster and what they thought about it. Sometimes you get a glimpse from a post or a hand to better thinking of a particular situation that helps me in the future. That is expert advise for me, but to you it may be old hat or of no value.
I have been reading HEFAP and trying to play that way in SoCal for 6 months now. I have been playing mostly 3-6, some 6-12 and 8-16 as well. I still find myself losing more than I win. Sometimes, I lose because I have played some inferior hands whan it becomes a family calling affair. Although, I think I am getting better at folding losers before they get me in trouble.
I see that it has taken a fair amount of experience to believe that I need to be as tight as they recommend. I also see that it has taken me some time to become more aggressive - which has been helping of late.
I guess what I am looking for is some other experience with that book - Do others have good long term experience/results using the HEFAP advice?
Also, after a thorough understaning of HEFAP what is the next step to separate the winners from the losers?
I don't have time to write very much right now but I will say this: I started playing poker only two years ago, now I am a consistent winner and am pursuing a poker career. I haven't had to work a real job in 8 months now and the only materials that I learned from were the 2+2 books, Doyle Brunsons book, and Caro's book titled Fundamental secrets of winning poker (or something like that). Couple this with serious study, experience, and individual thinking and you too may be succesful.
I believe there is less value in HEFAP in loose passive low limit games, then there is at tight aggressive games. However, HEFAP does teach the fundamentals of loose games, and it works.
The next step is to continue studying, not only HEFAP, but other authors. I like studying people's books that have diverging concepts. I then choose the concepts that best fit me. I like Abdul Jalib's home page, I like Caro's book of tells... I even like the books that S&M don't like, such as Poker for Dummies. You learn a lot by determining what is wrong in these books rather then always reading what may be the correct strategy.
I probably learned more from reading posts on this site, and posting hands I played then anything else. In the beginning I was not a winning player. I didn't read anything I just tried to play holdem. I found this site, and I chose a mentor to emulate. This worked better then anything else. My mentor that I chose was a strong supporter of S&M, so that probably helped.
Also, there is no substitute for experience.
Just my opinions
One thing about HEFAP is that it is not a cut and dry guaranteed formula for success. It provides guidelines for handling many common situations, but doesn't even come close to covering EVERYTHING that is going to wind up happening at the table. Every hand is different. Every opponent is different. Experience is the single most important factor in improving your results, once you have a solid foundation from which to build. But just one book alone will not be enough, there are several books which are crucial and should be read several times over and then reread later on, like poker theory, and gambling theory and other topics. Then you need lots of experience, only trial by fire will satisfy that prerequisite. You have to not only know what the right play is likely to be, but WHY. You have to spend a lot of time thinking about the game and training your self how to THINK poker.
Dave in Cali
HEFAP is directed towards medium limit games, according to the authors, from 10-20 to 40-80. Many of the plays they talk about simply will not work in smaller games where the players are less sophisticated.
I agree with you that the correct method of play is tight/aggressive, probably with an emphasis on tight in the smaller games. The loose games section in HEFAP should also be very helpful.
Traditionally, HPFAP was aimed at middle limit games for experienced players. The new edition added a loose games section which was meant to address low limit games as well. However, based on your post I think you should set aside HPFAP temporarily and focus on playing $3-$6 and using a book like Lee Jones "Winning Low Limit Hold'em". Try writing down hands that you are involved in where you think you may have made a mistake. Post some of them on the small stakes forum for comment. You can also collect some of these hands on a monthly basis and try to discuss them with players you know to be good, winning players. I think by doing this you will identify any leaks in your game. Make sure you play at least 300-400 hours of $3-$6 and have a decent hourly earn before venturing into any higher limit games.
Personally, since reading HEFAP i've become a much more consistant winner and have fallen in love with Poker all over again. I recommend HEFAP to all of my friends who take Poker serious enough, as a hobby, to invest time and money into truly learning it.
After understanding HEFAP what separates the winners from the losers is discipline and experience.
Even without HEFAP discipline and experience are the two fundamentals to winning poker.
I've been playing for about 6 months with Theory of Poker and HEFAP. I've been winning at Paradise games, up to 3/6 (most hours are at 2/4)
But at first, it didn't click. I lost 120$ at .5/1 over a month or so. I would fold fold fold, but the pots I won were small and the ones I lost were large. Yes, I was correct to play "tight", but I didn't quite get what tight meant. I wasn't able to evaluate my hands for value in terms of the other players and the board. So "tight" was too loose when the board was dangerous, and too weak/passive when I had a good hand.
So, anyway, to comment on the S/M books: The way I see it now is that S&M books are like technical manuals. It's a catch-22 with very specific and focused literature: you can't understand what it means until you understand it to some extent already. The S&M books give you lots of tactics for various situations, and they actually tell you when these tactics will be useful. However, it's easy to just see the tactics of their play, and to lose the context. The context only really has meaning to the reader if the reader can place the context in terms of his own experience. Without the experience, the beginning player reads, "Semi bluffs are powerful" and ends up betting out too much. It takes experience to balance the concepts, and that's more important than the tactics.
Ditto on your good response.
You obviously have grasped an important concept, that advanced plays are no good without advanced thinking, which only comes with experience. Your post indirectly makes a good arguement for why you should re-read your books every now and then, you get more out of them the second time around, because you have run into that situation several times since first reading the book. I am re-reading theory of poker now, I am not sure how many times I have read it, probably ten or eleven. It's a complex book, you can't comprehend it all at once. This is a complex game, you can't imagine how much so until you start playing it.
Even an advanced technical manual isn't a magic bullet for success. Trial by fire combined with practice and study ARE formulas for success, but they still aren't magic bullets. Sorry, no such magic bullet exists. If it did, why would Mason and Dave be wasting their time writing advanced technical manuals about how to win the hard way, when they would just be out spending all that cash from their magic bullets? The HARD fact about gambling is that most of the facts about gambling are hard to accept....
Dave in Cali
I have read HEFAP and at first it cuased me to loose more money. Reason: The book shows many specific examples and "Possible" ways to play those hands. Taken as a bible without understanding the odds, and theory behind those plays will get you into trouble. Especially at low limits. However, after putting in alot more time at the tables and then rereading the text I have become an even better player becuase I was able to digest more of the theory and knew the underlying odds. I agree with Jim on his recomendation of Lee Jone's book. For a beginner starting out in low limit games I found this book an excellent breakdown of the low limit games and it helped me recover from my earlier losses and made me into a break even player. Against most peoples recomendation I also recommend the Silberstang (sp?) book. It talks about alot of different forms of poker but the part on Hold em' imparts a very good basic strategy. This book is only a beginning level book but becuase of its simplicity and directness it allows someone entirely new to the game to begin playing with a reasonable chance of success. I believe posting on this bullitin board is an excellent way of learning about your play. I have posted a few hands up that I lost and recieved some valuable advice on how I played them. Lastly, play online for no money. My current favorite place is the new pokerpages tournaments. This really helped me learn a couple of important concepts that can only be learned from time and it cost me nothing. namely I learned the power of position. I knew it as a concept but after playing hundreds(thousands?) of hours online I got a very good feel for position instead of the basic rules of early middle and late postion espoused in most of these books.
After all of this I will sum up by saying I am primarily a low limit player (mostly due to location) but I have been a winning player for almost the last two years. Good Luck
typical game, somewhat on the aggressive side. Four raise limit in this game (no kill). middle position, pocket QQ. UTG, an aggressive player, raises. he could have a variety of hands. Folded to me, I reraise. Folded back to UTG who raises again. I just call the fourth bet. He could still possibly be betting AKs, but the possibility of him having a bigger pocket pair is glaringly obvious.
Flop is a sweet Q 5 3 rainbow. He bets and I raise him. I want it to look like I have AQ. He won't be able to put me on a set of queens yet, so I am taking advantage of his aggressiveness in order to max out my profit on the hand. No way he's folding yet. He reraises me and I just call him.
On the turn he bets into me again and I raise him again. To my surprise, he raises me back again. I (of course) make it four bets. At this point I put him on pocket AA, and if so, he has a gutshot to the wheel. Time to charge him to draw to it. I would have kept raising till we were both all in if given the chance....
River was the 8c. He checked, I bet, he called. He showed KK after he saw my queens.
Obviously he overplayed his hand, but I liked my play on the flop. This is a case where the most deceptive play is to play straightforwardly. By raising him immediately, it looked like I had AQ, and he obviously misread my hand. Many players will wait till the turn to raise with a set, but that is usually not the way to win the biggest pot, especially not in low limit. If I had just called the flop, like many would, then raise the turn, he might very well fold and I would lose all those bets (because it would be obvious that I had a set). Nah... Raise em' on the flop... Had I made it four on the flop though, then he would have probably backed off. So again, I just passively called his reraise, assuring he would bet into me again on the turn. I wasn't surprised with his play at all - until he reraised me on the turn, now he was really overplaying his hand. Take advantage of these situations when they arise.
Dave in Cali
But Dave, would you 3-bet a UTG raiser preflop with AQ? I still like the way you played your hand but it is not clear that your opponent is putting you on AQ. I would tend to put you on an overpair or pocket queens given your preflop reraise.
in many games I play in, I would three bet an UTG raiser. many of these southern cali players will raise (inappropriately) with any pair, any ace, or sometimes even hands like KT. When I am against these players, I will three bet with hands that I might even fold against a good player. (I will usually fold AQo if faced with a raise from a tight player).
Well thought out and well played. Nothing quite like disquising your hand AND playing it correctly.
Brier is also right. Conservative types are going to get paranoid when the opponent raises their obvious over-pair.
Jim did have a good point. had I been against a conservative player I probably:
1. wouldn't have raised the flop, making it look like I might have AK or JJ. 2. would have raised the turn, even though I realize the conservative player would probably fold to my obvious set. Having him fold and winning the pot right there is better than having him catch a card to beat me, especially with the wheel draw out there and me putting him on aces.
The fact that this was a loose-aggressive player made me play as I did. It's nice when they overplay their hands when you have a monster.
Dave in Cali
I can't imagine anyone folding an overpair on the turn when you raise...
It was not a big science play! I don't understand why you make so big deal about it? What is so great to get just blind-lucky and get the Q on the flop?
OBVIOUSLY I got lucky on the flop. Did you have any other comments, or should I have just checked it down because I got lucky, and the other guy "deserved to win"? Perhaps making the most of it when you do happen to get lucky is a better strategy...
also good if you dont have position is to get aggressive on the flop and then bet the turn, hoping to three bet.
also, one thing that doesnt work too well, especially at nonlowlimit, is that the pot is kept small by slowplaying the flop, and then when you raise or checkraise the turn people seriously have to consider folding.
How much money do the best poker players win? How about just better than average players? What's the best metric for describing "how much money you win" anyway?
It would be very useful to me if I could gather descriptions from people of how much money they've made (or lost) during their LIFETIME of poker playing. Estimate how many hours of poker you've played in your life. Estimate the amount of money you've gained (or lost) since that fateful day when you decided to play your first hand. Tell me the limits that you usually play at. And keep it to a description of the money made/lost during your entire poker career. Stuff like "One time I made 100k in a single weekend!" makes for entertaining stories, but is useless for determining how much of a winner you really are, in the long long run, which, glory aside, is all that matters, right?
I'll give my own description of my "winnings" (ha) to give a sample of what I'm looking for from you guys. Unfortunately, I'm relatively new to hold'em so my description won't be very exciting or informative.
I've won about $120 playing hold'em. I played my first hand four months ago, and I estimate that I've played a total of 150 hours since then.
Half of that time, I was playing against my mother and step-father at the kitchen table, who, needless to say, aren't very good. I've won about $120 from these games.
The other half of the time, I was playing online at Paradise Poker, from which I've won exactly two dollars and seventy-five cents. I play mostly at the 1/2, 2/4, 3/6, and 5/10 tables, and play lots of 5, 10, 20, 30, and 50 dollar tournaments.
Yeah, lame, but you get the idea. I would love to see descriptions from the bigger guys, just so I can get a feel for what the highest "rate" attainable really is (More motivation for rereading HPFAP again and again each night). Maybe even The Man Himself will condescended to answer my piddly little post with something along the lines of "I've won 72 million dollars playing hold'em since I invented the game back in 1970. I've played about 100,000 hours since then, mostly at the $1000/$2000 limit". :P
I make a play in my regular game that I do not see very often, and I was wondering if I could get a few opinions. When the game is very aggressive (though the players are decent), I will make a certain play on monster hands. I only make this play when it is not at all obvious that I have hit, due to either my deception or the board. I will make the hand on the river when in the middle of two other players. If the first player bets, and if (and only if) I am confident the third player will raise, I will just call the first bet. If the third player was thinking about raising, my calling will often induce this raise to thin the showdown. Then whether the first player re-raises, calls, or folds I will of course re-raise. If the first player has called or re-raised, I have essentially run an expensive trap for both of them. Either way, I still induce extra betting.
I realize the obvious risk is that I will call the first player, and the third will call or fold, giving me a mediocre pot. I am not sure what to call this play- it seems to be somewhere between a slowplay and a checkraise, maybe a call-reraise? I run this play very rarely in this situation, but from time to time when it works the rewards are excellent. It has the added advantage of making my call (normally a weak play) into a threat. It obviously adds to the variance in my play. I have read Sklansky's (good) theory on why calling is a poor strategy, but can it be justified in this manuever?
SO: Is this a good or bad play? If you were one of the raisers, how would you react? I am not good at EV- Is this a positive play dependent on success rate?
All feedback appreciated!
In general I think it is too fancy a play to use very often on the river. I like to "limp-reraise" the flop sometimes with strong hands, or better yet, hands like flush draws, but only when the betting action and my position allow this move to be used effectively. However, on the river, I wouldn't do what you are saying without the nuts, as what if you raise and then get popped again? However, if you can manage to get this play to work, good for you. But saying you only win a mediocre pot when it doesn't work probably indicates that you could do more earlier in the hand to build the pot when you have a monster.
dave in cali
I don't think it is a bad play. If you raise odds are good that the player yet to act will fold, and the player that bet will call. If you call, then the odds are better that the last player to act will call (and in your opinion) he may raise. Either way you often end up with the same number of bets, and when the last player to act reacts as you had hoped, you may net a lot more bets.
This really depends on the players. If the first person to bet may reraise me I will usually raise, or if it looks like the last player to act may not call the bet. Otherwise I will try to get the players in a raising war when I am positive I have the best.
Pretty much ANY time you have a very big hand, ESPECIALLY if it is not the nuts, on the river, and you are bet into and have people left to act after you, the best course of action is just to call the bet and not raise. This is especially true if a you think the initial bettor is bluffing or you have 2 or more people left to act.
If the first guy is bluffing, if you raise chances are everyone will fold.
If you don't have the nuts, and you raise, but one of the others does, then you lose more bets.
If you do have the nuts and the other person left to act would call 1 bet but not 2, you gain nothing.
A few things in your post trouble me. You mentioned that it is an aggressive game, and you make your hand on the river, but it is not obvious what hand you made. The only thing you could be talking about is rivering a set or a gutshot straight. Obviously flushes don't fall into this category.
If you are playing these types of draws in aggressive games then chances are that you are losing so much by trying to set this trap that you can't possibly make enough to make up for what youve lost.
I don't know many people who are going to raise on the river without an excellent hand. So I can't see how you would get the opportunity to implement your plan, unless the game is well stocked with very bad players.
Pretty loose lineup, down to seven handed. I am in the cutoff with Ah9c. All fold to me (a rarity), and I can see that the button is going to fold. I raise hoping to get heads up with a blind (it is unlikely that I will steal the blinds, every hand all night has at least gone to the flop). only the BB calls me.
Flop comes Qd 9d Jc. BB checks and I bet. BB calls.
Turn comes the 3h. He checks and I check behind him. I figure if he has a jack he will call, but if he has a queen he would have already either bet or raised my bet on the flop. I checked for two reasons: to make it look like I was trying to steal, and to save a bet if I was beaten. Another possibility is that I might induce him to bluff the river if he misses a flush draw or if he has nothing. I intend to call if he bets the river.
The river is the Qc. He checks to me. I know he doesn't have a queen now, because there is no way this guy would let me check it down if he did. I bet into him. I figure on a few possibilities giving me reason to bet: First, perhaps he has been calling me with a nine, if so, I have him outkicked. Second, he might fold a better hand such as a weak jack or pocket TT. Also, he might call with a worse hand such as 88 or ace high, thinking that I am bluffing. My river bet does sort of look like a bluff. Anyway, he calls me and I show my hand. He mucks face down, so I don't know what he had, but I suspect a small pocket pair.
Comments welcome, especially on my river bet.
Dave in Cali
Dave, you said, "I figure if he has a jack he will call." I believe most people would raise when they hit a J on the flop to a steal raise. I think you missed a bet on the turn.
On the river I would have bet out as well (in your situation). If I had bet and been called on the turn, I may check it down here, so the result could very well be the same.
I don't think you get a better hand then yours to fold on the river, but I do think you are the best.
On the river, I like your bet. Lots of hands he could have you could beat, really only a jack to worry about, and you might well have heard from him by now if he had a jack.
I also like your check on the river. This assures you're going to get to a showdown rather than get knocked out. If he's weaker than your A-9, chances are you're not going to get called twice, in my judgment: I don't think he calls both of your bets on the turn and the river. Better, then, to check for the reasons you indicated.
if youre sure you cant steal the blinds, what do you think about just calling preflop? but of course if you can get it heads up you must raise.
like the rest of your play.
Could somebody let me know IF and WHEN high stakes poker will be coming to Florida. Also, if you have a site where I can read about the recent legislation would be helpfull. Tks
Not any time soon. The state will not negotiate with the indeans. The indeans have been trying for the last 7 years to get high stakes poker and real casino games but have not succeded. The state does not like the slot machines but of course the indeans will not give these up to get just high stakes poker.
I have been a poker dealer there for 7 years and have finaly given up hope so i will be moving to vegas in the next 2 mons.
I personaly see nothing happening in the next year or 2 if ever.
I read a post on rgp by Nolan Dalla. He gave his top ten places to play poker.
1. L.A. 2. Vegas 3. Bay area 4. Atlantic City 5. Tunica 6. Biloxi/Gulfport 7. Reno 8. Southeastern Conneticut 9. Phoenix 10. Seattle/Tacoma
I wanted to get some more opinions about the best places to play. Also if anyone has a top list of places to share it here.
It depends upon what game you like to play (stud, hold'em, etc.) and whether you like to play limit poker or big bet poker (pot limit and no limit). Speaking from my little knothole which is middle limit hold'em ($10-$20 through $30-$60). Here is my ranking and rationale:
1. Horseshoe in Tunica, Mississippi
They have great $20-$40 games. Loose, passive games but sometimes aggressive. Lowest rake, free food, cheap rooms, third man walking rule, and they treat you like royalty.
2. Soaring Eagle in Mt. Pleasant, Michigan
A great $20-$40 game is spread on the weekends. Another loose, passive type game. Third man walking rule. Reasonable rake. Free food but the rooms are not cheap despite getting a poker room rate.
3. Casino Arizona in Scottsdale, Arizona
Good $20-$40 games most everyday. Reasonable rake. Reasonably priced motels close by.
4. Oceans 11 in Oceanside, California
Great $20-$40 games everyday and a decent $40-$80 game during the week. Third man walking rule (I think). Reasonable rake. Lousy hotel accommodations.
5. Isle of Capri in Lake Charles, Louisiana
One of the best $20-$40 games in the country but it is only spread on Wednesdays. High rake ($5) but the loose, passive game more than makes up for it. Free food and inexpensive motels are near by.
6. The Los Angeles Card Barns
Commerce, Hollywood Park, etc. Good $20-$40 games but they are very loose and very aggressive. You can win a lot when you are running good but you can lose a lot when you are running bad. Free food and reasonable hotel accommodations. The biggest drawback is that the cost of playing poker is quite high. At Commerce they charge $16 an hour (they collect $8 every half hour). At Hollywood Park they collect $7 every half hour which is $14 per hour. In a typical rake game with a $3 rake, my cost is about $6-$7 per hour on the average. This extra collection cost adds up to a lot of money over many hundreds of hours of play.
7. The Taj in Atlantic City, New Jersey
Decent $20-$40 and $15-$30 games when I was there. They are on a collection system similar to the LA card barns so the cost to play is high. Expensive rooms but some food comps. However, the players, the dealers, and floor personnel can be abrasive. Screaming and shouting seems to be the way people communicate with each other back there.
8. The Bellagio and the Mirage in Vegas
I live here in Vegas. In general, the middle limit hold'em games are tight, aggressive affairs which are the worst games to play in. This will vary depending upon the lineup but you really have to be game selective. The rake is among the lowest in the nation. Not much is offered in comps except that you can get a free buffet once a week if you are willing to wait in line for 20 minutes. The poker room rates are still very high, especially at the Bellagio. The games get better during the World Series or when the Orleans has their tournament. But in general, you are better off playing middle limit poker somewhere else because there are too many good players in this town who are trying to make a living off the game. However, if you like low limit poker (below $10-$20) the games are the best in the nation especially because the rake is so low.
If you like pot limit, the gulf coast is the place to be. There are good pot limit games at the Horseshoe in Tunica, Mississippi and at the Grand Casino on the Coushatta Indian reservation outside Kinder, Louisiana.
What is third man walking rule?
The third man walking rule applies when two players have left the table. The third guy to leave gets picked up if he is not back in time to take his big blind. This rule keeps the games from becoming shorthanded for extended periods of time. The third man walking rule is desperately needed for the Bellagio and Mirage poker rooms. It is quite common to have two or more $15-$30 or $10-$20 tables which are all shorthanded because players get up to go eat, take a walk, play elsewhere in the casino, etc. At one time, Linda Johnson (former editor of CardPlayer magazine) was going to discuss this with Doug Dalton and recommend that he implement it in both card rooms. I guess nothing ever happened.
Thanks, do they have play over rule ?,when I played at Horseshoe in LV more than ten years ago if someone left table next player on the list can play his spot(they have plastic box cover his chips)until that guy came back.
In california I don't think third man walking rule applied ,they give player period of times (20 minutes) which is also flexible for bad player he can have an hour if all player at the table agree.
Yes, if a player is going to be absent from the table for an extended period due to eating or for some other reason, he notifies the floor and they have a "play over" box they put over his chips. They make it known that a "play over" is available for anyone who wants it.
The Regent in Las Vegas has a "third man walking rule". The highest game they ever get is 8-16 though (probably too small for Jim).
I'm lucky, the room has very few walkers anyway. Last night for instance, I played 8 hours on graveyard in a full game, and only saw one "walker" the whole night. I played there this afternoon too, and saw no walkers at all.
Your comments regarding the Taj are right on the money. Loud, obnoxious players (and the whole room too), overall poor quality dealers, floorpeople who don't really give a damn, on the whole not a very fun place to play. Of course you can often times find good games at the taj, and at most small and middle limits, you usually have several games to choose from. I am not sure, but I believe 15-30 is 6$/half hour and 20-40 is 7$/half. 10-20 holdem used to be 5$/half, at least when I used to live there and played it at the trop, but I heard that it may have been changed to a rake game, at least at tropicana, due to too many players taking advantage of trop's policy of letting you use your poker card comps to pay your time with.
On the whole, you will have a MUCH better playing experience playing at the trop. However, you will usually find one or two 10-20 holdem and stud games, and most of the time at limits higher than that there will either be one game or no game. Trop doesn't get the mass volume of business that the Taj does, but it is much better run, doesn't seem to attract nearly as many obnoxious people, and the staff was great, at least when I lived there....
Dave in Cali
Dave, I'm not sure when you left the area, but I believe that Taj gets a very bad rap (at least on the internet). The time charges you listed are still correct. The games are not raked at 10-20 and above.
Since dealers were allowed to keep their own tips, the quality of dealing has gone way up. A lot of the bad dealers have vanished, presumably because they couldn't earn a living. New dealers know that they make more money by dealing quickly and accurately. I have not seen many obnoxious players (at least at 10-20 hold'em). Sure there are occasional disputes, but I have fights at the Trop and in Las Vegas, as well.
In my opinion, the Taj is more chaotic than the Trop in part because it is much busier. This past Saturday, the room was a little quieter (because of Easter), and much of the chaos was missing. I agree that there are some bad floorpeople, but others are very good.
Also, as you note, the action in the Taj is much better than the action in the Trop. The Trop has a hidden room that prevents all but the diligent from playing. The Taj room is right by the hotel entrance, and games are easily visible to everyone who comes into the hotel. As a result, many complete novices will wander into the room. Because of this, I enjoy playing at the Taj more. There are always new people to meet. I played in a 10-20 hold'em game at the Trop last December during the big Taj tournament, and the other players made me feel like I was trespassing in a club to which I didn't belong.
The 10-20 holdem game at the trop was very unpleasant the few times that I played in it. Surly, nasty players, extremely aggressive, even to the point of stupidity. Not a very easy game either most of the time. The 10-20 players (same bunch all the time) probably didn't want you in the game because they are looking for fresh meat, not another good player. The rest of the trop games I liked, and the room is well run and comfortable. I played 10-20 stud there now and then and it was generally much more fun, and if I was in the game, you know it was a good game, because I WONT play in a higher limit game with a bunch of rocks or pros....
I have been in cali for about two years. I don't know when they changed the tip policy at the taj, or what it was when I lived there. Did trop change it too? I'm sure that WOULD increase the quality of the dealers. It is entirely possible that the taj poker room may have become a better place to play since I was last there. It is certainly true that you will have more games to choose from, and there are lots of bad players at the taj. I heard it's non-smoking now, that would go a long way towards making it better as well. Hopefully trop will follow suit, I wish the entire country would do what california has done: no smoking in bars or cardrooms. sorry smokers, nothing personal, I just can't stand the smell! Plus, you know, your lungs....
Dave in Cali
Both the Trop and the Taj changed the tip policy following casino control commission action, which I believe was around Nov. 1999. That's a rough guess. Both poker rooms are now nonsmoking. The Taj went nonsmoking in Feb. 2000, and the Trop followed suit in or about Nov. 2000.
BTW: I meant to say that I've seen fights in cardrooms at the Trop and in LV. Mild mannered me would never have a fight.
The Taj represents the bottom of the barrel in terms of environment; the Trop is a little better, though not by much.
I am not singling out either - it's an "east coast thing". I have lived here all of my life and those who inhabit this region are - for the most part - just cranky people. (I spoon-fed you all a straight-line but it is the truth.)
- As to the "rake", all games at 10-20 and above at the Taj charge time; 10-20 is $5/hh, 15-30 is $6/hh, 20-40 1s $7/hh and 30-60 (which I don't play) is $8/hh.
The only exception is 10-20 stud. This game is raked at 5%, max. $4. They normally get out ~ 35 hands per hour and WELL over half of the pots are raked for the maximum. It's not hard to see why they changed their policy on this game; with a full table they WERE dropping $80 per hour - they are now dropping well over $100 for that sanme hour. When the game is seven handed, the disparity is even greater.
One thing that you will find at the Taj is dealers who, ahem, "accidentally" under-rake your pots at the lower limits (up to and including 5-10) if you can be counted on for a toke when you win a pot; you don't have to be tipping outrageously, $1 a pot and maybe $2 on a "monster" is all they look for.
The floor "seems" to look the other way.
Or they are just so clueless they are not aware that this is occurring.
(I suspect #1, but #2 would not come as a shock to me.)
No offense intended to anyone, this is just the way it is as of this writing.
- J D
you are right about one thing, the east coast offers a much more aggravating playing environment than vegas or cali, mostly because east coast people are much more miserable on the whole. Trop is still better than taj by a bunch, IMO, but the west coast and vegas are ahead by a mile.
dave in cali
Thanks for the great post Jim. I plan on going to Phoenix in 2 weeks. I play 20-40 he, is the game there loose passive or agressive. Any info on the 20-40 there would be appreciated.
A good list, although I haven't played in about 3/4 of the places that you mentioned. I must say, however, that no list of this nature is complete if it doesn't include Gary Indiana.
I've played extensively in Vegas, L.A., and the Bay Area. Vegas is by far the easiest, due to the steady influx of clueless tourists, and the low rake/time doesn't hurt, but it's smoky. L.A. is next but has very stiff time charges, and then the Bay Area is a bit tougher (but cheaper), at least in the San Jose area, though Colma has brought in new blood. Reno is fairly dead. Vienna is great, but more smoke than Vegas and higher time charge than L.A. I haven't played enough in Tunica and Phoenix to pass judgment and I have never played on in Foxwoods or AC.
First, this type of post is probably better placed on our Other Topics Forum.
Second, what other places are there?
Third, there is very little real poker in Reno. Putting it ahead of Connecticut and Phoenix where there is major poker action just can't be right.
Yeah, I haven't read Dalla's post, but I think Reno should be demoted. Also, Phoenix should probably go up some, and you could easily put San Diego County somewhere in the list as I'm almost positive it has considerably more poker and higher limits than about four of the places on there.
We have oceans 11 cardroom here, they have lots of games and limits to choose from daily, including higher limit games. I have heard good things about it, but I don't play there, not because it's not a good place to play, but because there are two other places much closer to my house. I usually play at the lucky lady or viejas in SD county.
Lucky Lady has holdem, lowball and O8 (no stud). They usually have an 8-16 game going every day. They have 8 tables total (I think) and usually have a couple 3-6 and 4-8 holdem games, plus an 8-16 HE (or sometimes 6-12), and a 3-6 or 4-8 O8 game plus a lowball game (usually 10-20, with all those crazy kill buttons, I won't touch that game with a 30' pole. Even if I WAS an expert at lowball, everyone that plays it has been playing it for 50 years!). They do sometimes get a 20-40 holdem game going, I think it's friday at 2pm. All games are kill games. The time charges are about the best anywhere I have ever seen, 3$/half hour in 3-6 HE, 4$/half in holdem up to 8-16 (they just RAISED the price), no drop, no jackpot. Games are typically loose aggressive, with occasional maniac games. Very little or no tournament action at this cardroom. One thing to note is that you will only rarely see new faces at the table once you have played there a few times, most players are regulars. It took some major adjustments coming from AC to SD, the reputation of cali players is well deserved. Got my ass handed to me the first few times, the games are so much more aggressive out here than they are in AC. However, once I started learning the player's styles, and making the adjustments needed to win in a loose aggressive game, I began to do well, despite all the regular players. Just because someone is a regular doesn't mean they are a good player.... To be quite honest, I have only ever met one player in there whom I knew for sure knew what he was doing, a 2+2er if you will, but still, he was young and aspiring, no Doyle Brunson. The majority of players there are somewhere between marginal and terrible players. Most of the time there will be a couple rocks who think they are experts, but are really just weak-tight, two to four loose aggressive players who will raise with about 15-50% of their hands (pre-flop, flop, turn, river!), plus a couple terrible playing calling stations, or donators. The staff is great and the place is well run, plus the food is good. It's very homey and relaxed, slightly lax on the rules IMO, but then EVERYWHERE is lax on the rules compared to AC, where I first started playing....
Viejas has holdem up to 8-16, O8 up to 4-8, and stud high/low 8 or better at 1-3 and 3-6. They take a drop after the flop of 3$ (2$ in 1-3 stud or 2-4 O8), plus 1$ for the jackpots. Sometimes the action in this cardroom can be terrific, but other times you will find nine rocks at the table and one open seat for you. Avoid tight games at viejas like the plague, only the house makes money at them. If you can find a loose game, the drop is not that much different from playing in a raked game, such as atlantic city lower limit games, with 10% to 4$. Overall it's not a bad cardroom, but not a great one either. Some of the staff is great, and some of them are downright terrible and surly. They have small buy-in tournaments dailey at 10 and 6. On the average, I have found these tournaments to be poorly run and very irritating, to the point where I probably won't go there very often any more. One time the tournament was almost 15 minutes underway before we got any chips or a dealer. four hands later they raised the stakes. They jack up the stakes every 15 minutes, which makes the luck factor go way, way up. Within three orbits you may find yourself with enough chips to play one hand, and not even to the end. Add to this the predominance of calling stations or loose (stupid) aggressive players, with pointless limp-reraising and capping, and you have a recipe for a very irritating craps shoot.
Overall, neither is worth a special trip to san diego for! Neither place is really sufficient to support a pro poker player either, because the limits are too small, but this means that you don't find a bunch of pros playing either. Several people play there virtually every day, but I would be surprised if they were making more than just a minimal profit, as they are pretty bad players overall. But if you are in town and want to play...
Dave in Cali
Then there's Sycuan (not sure the current limits, but some talk of them getting higher limts again) and the Village Club (up to 20-40 with overs, higher in the past). There is also the small Palomar Club and a couple of other Indian casinos (Pechanga, Pala(?)...) that may not be quite within the borders of the county. I think Barona closed it's cardroom.
Barona cardroom is closed, at least that's what everyone has told me. since I don't play anything but poker, I will never go there to find out.
are any of the other cardrooms you mentioned worth my time to bother with, given that I don't play middle limits, the lucky lady is right down the street, is extremely cheap to play at, and almost always has good games? Also, without making a comprehensive list, what is the rake/drop/time setup in the san diego cardrooms? I assume secuan is probably the same as viejas. And if it's not too much trouble, what is the drop/rake/time at oceans 11 for the small games, 8-16 or lower?
One other question, where is the best tournament action in SD, especially small buy-in tournaments? I have heard oceans 11 has good tournaments, true? The biggest problem with viejas tournaments is that they jack up the stakes WAY too fast.
Dave in Cali
Dave -- With good games, proximity, and that low time charge it will be tough for you to do better than LL as long as you don't want to play higher than 8-16.
The Village Club has 4-8, 8-16 and 20-40, and drops $3 (taken from a bind) if there's a flop. Oceans-11 is the same drop, though I'm vaguely recalling that someone said there is a difference there in the smaller limit games (maybe something like a 4th dollar taken for jackpots in some games??) I can't recall of the top of my head how the drop is reduced as the game gets short handed at O-11, but at Village I think it used to go down to $2 at 6-handed, $1 at 5-handed, and $0 at 4 handed. Village Club games, btw, are 8 handed (though there's a small chance that could have changed recently). I'm pretty out of touch with Sycuan.
I used to play all the time at the Village, but it's more or less similar to LL, though a bit more run down. It might be worth a try just for a change of pace, but I don't see it having any advantages for you right now. O-11 might have more game selection than LL, so might be worth a try for that.
Not too sure about the tournaments, as I don't follow them much. O-11 has a lot of them, but I don't know how they structure them. I don't even know if Village still has them, but they used to have one every morning at about 9am. It was a typical fast-escalating small tournament, but was very cheap, and a lot of players played it almost every day. Sorry I don't know more about that.
Thanks for the info John.
8 handed sometimes has advantages. I like the max nine setup, and I don't mind if one or two are up smoking. The LL kind of forced me to get better at short handed play, or at least at SLIGHTLY short handed play. Since someone is usually up smoking, and there's a max nine at each table, seven or eight handed games are the norm, and six is not that uncommon.
Viejas does cut the drop amounts as the game gets short handed, they take 2$ at either 7 or 6 players, and I have never played there with few enough players to see 1$ dropped. They keep taking the jackpot money though. I dislike jackpot games, but that will be the subject of another post....
Dave in Cali
An honorable mention to a Casino up north in Canada. Its one hour north of Toronto...
On the weekends there 3 10-20's, 2-3 20-40's, 3 5-10's, 3 3-6's going on.
There is usually a time pot on the 10-20 which means great things if your a tight player..as well as some very loose action. The game is always running and there are 11 seats at the table...All in all, I think its poker heaven. Especially with no rake...(time pot).
I have played mutch online games latley, and don pretty well. Im planing to go to vegas, and im curius of how good the 15-30 and 20-40 are in vegas, if we compare it to Paradise poker. I live in Norway and we play moustly 2-4 and and pot limit tourneys. $50 buy in and the 2-4 homegame here is mutch better than 10-20 online, but not quite as good as 20-40. I also have heard that Vienna got some good games, is there anyone who plays in Vienna? please feel free to respond.
This weekend I played in a 5-10-15 HE game on one of the boats here in Florida. It was the highest HE game spread on the boat, and even for that was amazingly full of *awful* players.
2 players in particular stood out. The worst player by far played 95% of his hands, played it all the way to the river, and had the most obvious "looks at his chips when he's gonna bet" tell I've ever seen. I thought he might hurt his next before the night was over! The other horrendous player also played a lot of hands, maybe 90%, and if he bet, get out of the way. There were maybe 2 other players who even had a clue, and the rest were loose passive or weak tight (more of the latter).
Sounds like a great game, huh? Well here's the two kickers: rake is 10% max of $5 with a jackpot drop of $1 at $15 pot. That by itself doesn't make the game unbeatable. But what about this. The two bad players I just mentioned were BIG tippers. I mean really big. The neck whipper would win an average sized pot and tip "two redbirds" and whenever the dealer would announce this I'd cringe. $10 down the drain. A small pot and this guy would tip $2-3. The other bad player toked more in the $2-3 range. With them playing so many hands, they were winning quite a few pots, and the money kept evaporating from the table. Towards the end, only a few players had any money left (and neither included the two big donors).
What's the consensus on a game like this? Good or bad...
Sounds like a good game, but you need to make some hands early before the money goes down the chute.
One of the components of my recent cold run is that I find myself in *great* games looking down at nothing but T5 and 69 offsuit for hours on end.
I get the usual 'tight player' comments and just I smile and shake my head thinking "Jeez, just give me 89s just ONCE in one of these 7-way one bet preflop pots!!"
It's not the best game because with the rake and jackpot drop, $$ is disappearing off the table quickly. It is probably beatable, but you would do better with lower rake and no jackpot drop, obviously. The magoos who are big tippers do cause themselves to bust out sooner, but as long as they have cash left you can profit from them. Sounds like a marginally beatable game, but you ain't gonna do as well as you could other places with more favorable rules. Such is the curse of florida players, I'm glad I moved to san diego....
Dave in Cali
The size of the other player's tips won't affect your hourly rate but it DOES affect how long the game will stay good.
The following is taken directly from Dick in Phoenix's Poker page, http://www.annabelles-treasures.com/poker/Abdul_leaks.htm
It is a segment of a longer text written by Abdul Jalib responding to another post on that site. By the way, I liked the site. Look for an essay by myself on the site in the next week.
"...I once visited Tempe to see a concert. I hadn't planned on playing poker, so I had only about $1000 on me. But my wife and I decided to check out Gila River after the concert. I played $10-$20 and lost, then $6-$12 and lost. My wife wanted to keep playing, so I was reduced to the humiliation of $4-$8. I was appalled at the rake and almost didn't play. I later calculated that to open-raise on the button there you need not much less than JJ. Even so, I slaughtered a short-handed $4-$8 game to the tune of $700 in 3 hours, and hell, I probably paid $200+ in rake to boot. Unbelievable.
Absolutely do not tip in such a rip-off casino. If the dealers bitch, tell them that the casino is charging so much rake that they could easily afford to pay the dealers $50 per hour, so they should be bitching to their bosses, not to you.
The $4-$8 game probably is beatable, barely, because most raked games are beatable since the fish take most of the burden, but you should be playing really, really, really tight. I suspect that you should pretty much never play AT and KQ in $4-$8 with a $4 max high percentage rake. Hands like 22 after several limpers are still okay, because you have such a low probability of actually paying the rake with longshot draws. ..."
So I had some issues with some of the things Abdul wrote. I will post them here in hopes to get some more discussion on the matters.
First, slaughtering a 4-8 game, even with a kill, for 700$ in three hours, is a rare feat indeed. Just taking 700$ out of the game is a rarity, that's 87.5 BB. And to take it out in three hours, Abdul must have gotten one hell of a rush of good hands that stood up to the river in multiway pots, ESPECIALLY if he was following his own advice of playing "really, really, really tight". If he paid 200$ in rake (I am assuming 10% to 4$), then he had to have won 50 pots, all of which reached the 40$ mark. Given that there are usually anywhere from about 35-50 hands per hour, depending on the speed of the game, that means he was winning about one in every three hands, or a little bit more if the game was slow. Plus he must have played a whole bunch of hands that he didn't win, because if all he did was win 50 pots he would have made much more than 700$. Abdul, I think there was some exaggeration going on here....
Second, in the second paragraph, I don't like his comments concerning not tipping in a low limit raked game. You should tip in any game, regardless of limit. Dealers make their living this way, and should have that opportunity regardless of the limit they happen to be dealing. You don't have to make it excessive, I usually give them a buck (unless they are really cute and I am flirting with them!). Let's face it, the rake and drop structures are NOT going to suddenly change. The VAST majority of poker games are low limit games, usually with a rake or drop. So if everyone went by this advice of Abdul's, the vast majority of poker dealers would receive no tips. Thus, the majority of their income would be taken away, plus the quality of dealers would go WAY down real fast. Who wants to deal for just the hourly wage they get? Tips are the majority of their income, if we take this away, we take away most of the incentive to be a dealer and do a good job of it. This would hurt poker by reducing the quality of games and the overall experience of playing poker.
The proportionately higher cost of playing poker at low limits, due to the rake, does take some profits away from winning players, this is indisputeably true. Tipping also takes profit away from winning players (but it is absolutely necessary, you just have to play a little better to cover that extra buck). However, saying that a 4-8 game with a rake is "beatable, barely" is absurd. Now a 4-8 raked game with 1$ tip against eight other tight aggressive players is definitely NOT beatable. Tight low limit games should be avoided like the plague, especially if there is a drop instead of a rake. However, this problem is not one you will have to deal with very often at low limit poker. Loose games are the norm. Loose games with medium to larger pots are easy to come by, and easy to beat. Sure, they are taking 1/2 BB out of the pot every hand, but there are proportionately more BB in the pot on every hand due to the excessive action.
Take the players from the 30-60 game at the bellagio and switch the limit and rake structure to 4-8 with a 10% to 4$ rake and 1$ tip. I would estimate that no one would be able to beat the game, unless the 30-60 game is much looser than I suspect it is. Now take the players from the 4-8 game and move them to 30-60. A good player would be able to beat the low limit players at either game. If he can win 1.8 BB per hour in the 4-8 game, he would certainly make a good deal more than that (in BB) from the 30-60 game with the exact same players, due to the proportionately lower cost of playing (I am not sure what the actual cost of playing 30-60 is). However, when he finally moves up to the real 30-60 games, he will find that that the game has gotten tighter and tougher, and his relative win rate might have gone way down. The bad players pay proportionately more of the rake than the good players in raked games because the bad players play more pots. This should imply that a good player pays proportionately LESS rake because they play fewer pots.
The relative cost of the rake must be weighed based on how many bets go into the pot on a given hand and how often you actually wind up paying the rake. If the average pot is 5 BB and they are taking 1/2 BB from every pot, that is a far cry different from a game where the average pot size is 20 BB with the same rake. Now if you are playing tightly, in the second game, you are not going to win many pots, and therefore won't pay the rake very often. Also, when you do win a pot, and therefore pay the rake, you will win lots of BB, making the percentage of your profit taken by the rake relatively small. It all goes down to GAME SELECTION. If you are in a good game, you should still be able to beat it even if it's raked. If you are in a bad game, you ain't gonna beat it by much anyway, so you deserve to be eaten alive by the rake for not picking your games better.
By the reasoning I have presented here it should be clear why the "dead drop on the button" rule is such a horrible rule, and such a detriment to beating a low limit game. If you DEFINITELY have to pay 3 or 4 bucks an average of 4 times per hour, that WILL kill your profit at low limit poker.
Games with a drop (taken on the flop) that counts towards your bet are more expensive to play in than raked games because the full rake is taken even if the pot doesn't reach the size needed for maximum rake. But it's still much better than dead drop games. Personally, I won't play in games with a dead drop. Why waste time trying to beat a game that sucks you dry by design, regardless of whether you are tight or loose? Dead drop games are the only low limit games that may actually be unbeatable by design, but even then, if the competition is bad enough, a good player can beat even these games, but not for nearly as much.
I for one am really getting tired of hearing the commonly held notion that low limit poker is unbeatable. They blame it on the rake. Or the loose players. Or the cycle of the moon being slightly off this month. Or whatever. It just keeps going back to the insistance that low limit games are "unbeatable". If this is true, then I guess I am just a statistical abberation, despite my more than 3,000 hours over the past three years of consistently showing a profit, only playing as high as 10-20 a few times, and mostly playing 3-6 or 4-8 holdem, sometimes with kills. Now if I were to analyze my results in more detail, I probably make more playing in the 3$/half hour time charge 3-6 kill game than I did playing 3-6 with no kill in atlantic city with 10% to 4$ rake. But I don't care about such details. This leads us to my next point, WHY LOW LIMIT POKER IS BEATABLE...
It's simple really, even an expert could figure it out. The competition is SO BAD, all you have to do is play well and pick your games wisely. Playing in a slightly weak-tight passive game with a 3$/half hour time charge is much better than playing in a loose aggressive game with a 4$ dead drop on the button. But playing in a game where the drop comes out of the BB only if there is a flop can be quite profitable if the game is filled with loose players that play badly.
A few weeks ago I played in a 3-6 kill game with a 3$ drop out of the BB (after the flop) and made a very large win of almost 800$ in eight hours. (It should be noted that these results are very atypical, obviously I had a very lucky day, probably a statistical outlier by more tha 3 SD. I have only had two sessions where I won more than 100BB). I got dealt good hands more often than expected, and they didn't get drawn out on very often, plus I made a few successful draws of my own. One thing I should mention is that I was at this particular cardroom for a tournament, otherwise I would be playing at my regular room where the time charge is much cheaper than the drop. I suspect I probably paid anywhere from 60-120$ in drop that day, (I wasn't counting the pots). However. I guarantee you my loose playing opponents paid way more than that in the same period of time. I chose my game wisely. I moved from another table into this game because it looked like a much better game than the one I was in. I was willing to brave the extra cost of the drop after the flop because the game was so good, I figured I could cover the additional cost by the excessive action and my edge over my horrible playing opponents. However, the next time I was at that cardroom, the game had nine rocks and one open seat for me. The average pot size was about 15-25$ in a 3-6 kill game. I played about ten minutes, and after assessing the game as hopeless, I left and went to my other hangouot, where the time charge is really low, and the players on the average are loose aggressive by design (my favorite games!). Here, with the low time charge, I can play in a game that's less than ideal and still make a profit, where at the casino with a drop it might be unprofitable to play against the exact same lineup do to the increased cost.
It's simple, if you are the best player at the table, beating the game should be no problem, assuming you have the proper experience and a good fundamental understanding of correct strategy for the game you are in, including the effect of the rake or time charge. Game selection is the #1 biggest factor in whether or not you will be a winner in casino poker, period. Assessing game quality includes giving proper consideration to the rake structure and how it affects the game. It not impossible to play a winning game at low limit poker if you choose your games wisely and play well. In fact you will probably wind up with a higher win rate (in BB/hour) than you will in any other game as you step up in stakes.
Comment / rebuttals / rantings/ravings welcome. Please include sensible, intelligent arguements to back up what you say if you wish to rant/rave or call me a fish.
And Abdul, this is nothing personal, I just happen to strongly disagree with what you wrote in this particular section of text.
Dave in Cali
You have put a lot of thought into this post. Since I don't have time to do that, here are a few off the cuff remarks:
Since it is very common for me to be up 30 BB in less than an hour playing 40-80, I have no reason not to believe that Abdul took $700 out of this game. He said it was short-handed, which means more hands per hour, and he was surely the best player in the game. Also, I often play in the 3-6 game at Sunset Station in LV just as a diversion, and I usually take $600 or more out of that game, although it takes a lot more than 3 hours.
You give several good reasons why dealers need to be tipped. But that doesn't mean that you have to be the one who tips them. ;-)
30-60 players might need to adjust their game when stepping down to 4-8, but they would easily beat the game. A winning 4-8 player would probably be a loser in 30-60, since, as you stated, they are used to beating players who are really bad. You have to play a lot better to beat 30-60.
If I think of anything else, I'll let you know.
Thanks for the response.
Like I said, it's nothing personal against Abdul, I read all his posts and have read everything on his website as well. I just found part of his post hard to believe. Not the winning 700$ in three hours, that I could believe. But paying 200$ in rake in three hours, even short-handed, is very difficult to do, unless the casino does not cut the rake with short handed games, and the rake is considerably more than 10% to 4$, and there's a jackpot drop, and you still have to play an awful lot of hands and get really lucky.... I'm not accusing him of being a liar, but we all exaggerate now and then, it's OK. You can question someone without it being a personal vendetta. He might clarify what he said, and then I might go, "OK, that makes perfect sense". Whatever, it should make for interesting debate though.
As far as tipping goes, I feel that every poker player should tip a reasonable amount for dealers that are doing a good job. I don't tip excessively, that would cut into my profits. I tip 1$ a pot, as long as the pot is reasonable sized. If I am playing in a very small game like 1-3, I get 50 cent pieces for tipping. If I win a very large pot I might tip double now and then, but I don't feel obligated to do so. When I have played in bigger games like 10-20 I still tipped the same.
You are right in that most high limit players should be able to beat a low limit game with no problem. That kind of makes me wonder why most of the players who think low limit is unbeatable seem to be high limit players. Perhaps they are not used to the adjustments needed for very loose games filled with sometimes completely unreadable players. They assume intelligence, a dangerous assumption. How can you read someone who does absolutely nothing but call? Or who doesn't even know what they have? Extremely loose games can sometimes be frustrating too, because of the constant drawouts.
And you are right, I did put a lot of thought into that post. I just kinda went off on the whole subject of rake and low limit beatability after reading Abdul's post. But I can type really fast so it's OK, it took less than an hour.... Also, I appreciate well thought out responses, even if they are not as long winded as I am....
Dave in Cali
That was a true story. We were in Tempe for one night to see George Strait, and I was lucky to have even $1000 on me. And I did run over the shorthanded 4-8 game.
You should not assume that I am an idiot. I said the $4 greater-than-10% rake on that $4-$8 game is beatable, barely, and I'm not sure why you would treat that like I said the most ridiculous thing ever. I've always maintained that even higher rakes are beatable, such as 10% with no cap, provided you have really dumb opponents. Anyway, you're going to be paying on the order of 2 big bets per hour rake in that game playing rock tight, and so I don't think you should expect a huge hourly rate after that. If you think otherwise, fine.
The rake is much steeper than 10% in that particular game. It's been ages since I played it, so I don't really remember the rake, but it's something like $2 preflop immediately and $1 on the flop and then another $1 at a certain pot size. If the big blind was very short-stacked, and the small blind mucked out of turn, then you would need about JJ to open on the button in this game, or so I previously calculated. (The blinds may be half size in this game; if so they may drop the big blind instantly and the small blind after the flop, but I can't remember.) Even at the time I had no idea how much rake I paid, though I did know how much I had won, so I see no point in defending my statement now when I surely don't know. However, assuming I paid an average $3 rake per pot, in a 4-handed 4-8 game, and assuming I would have have gotten close to 50 hands per hour, winning perhaps half of them because 4-8 players don't know how to play short-handed and the deck was hitting me hard, then that makes $75 rake per hour or $225 for 3 hours. It's at least vaguely plausible. I don't think we got a break on the rake short-handed.
Again, I just really don't remember and never knew in the first place, but even if I paid less than $200 for three hours, there is no doubt that I paid a ton of rake, definitely more than $100. Any casino that charges such a high rake at such a steep rate is making much more per table than any other cardroom and like I said, that casino can easily afford to pay its dealers $50 per hour. Therefore, I don't feel obliged to tip in such establishments. Neither you nor the dealers should get mad at me for it. You should get mad at the casino managers if they are not boosting the dealer salaries with that extra rake they are charging.
For what it's worth, the dealers and cocktail waitresses at Bellagio generally like me, as there, in addition to being considerate, I do tip reasonably well (though not extravagantly.)
In the future, I would appreciate it if you would use rec.gambling.poker for any bones you have to pick with me, as the moderator of www.twoplustwo.com is quite unreasonable in his censorship. He already censored one totally unoffensive direct response to a direct question asked of me.
"In the future, I would appreciate it if you would use rec.gambling.poker for any bones you have to pick with me, as the moderator of www.twoplustwo.com is quite unreasonable in his censorship. He already censored one totally unoffensive direct response to a direct question asked of me."
You had ben given several warnings, and you should consider this another one. If you always find it necessary to work an insult into your posts, we will take appropriate action.
By sticking to the subject manner, it will not only be better for these forums, but it will help to enhance your reputation as someone who is knowledgeable about poker and who should be listened to. By always working in a little shot, you switch the emphasis away from the subject at hand. This should have the effect of changing the thrust of your post from a worthwhile theory debate to a personal vendetta.
"By sticking to the subject manner, it will not only be better for these forums, but it will help to enhance your reputation as someone who is knowledgeable about poker and who should be listened to. "
It should not be necessary to have to say this.
POKER AND POKER STRATEGY
These are the topics that are appropriate for discussion on this forum. It is clearly stated on this website. I am very aggravated when I click on a post and see some dribble that has nothing to do with the topic of POKER AND POKER STRATEGY. I don't really care if you are nice about it, as long as you are sticking to the appropriate topic and providing some reasonable arguement to back up what you are saying. I hope we don't have to tatoo this on the forehead of everyone who wants to use this site.
Dave in Cali
Mason, those were facts, not insults.
"as the moderator of www.twoplustwo.com is quite unreasonable in his censorship."
Since when is your opinion considered a fact.
"Mason, those were facts, not insults."
Give it a rest. Be like me, a nice easy going poster that never, well almost never strays form the topic: poker. Hey are you coming to the Mirage Q & A on Friday? Hope so.
Fact: Mason Malmuth already censored one totally unoffensive direct response to a direct question asked of me.
You know that I like you and believe you are a great contributor to this forum. I believe that you are a bright young fellow who is very knowledgeable and innovative when it comes to poker. But somewhere down the road you and Mason had a falling out over something. That's fine. Im not trying to patch things up there. But just like me and all the other poiters here you are a guest and no more than that. This is Mason's house. In my house I make the rules. In your house you make the rules when Lonestar says it's o.k. But here in Mason's House he doesn't take kindly to being insulted. And quite frankly you have insulted him on many occaisions. So he has the power to delete your posts whether they are insulting or not. It's the rule. And he makes the rules in his house. So just pretend Mason doesn't exist when you post here and I'll bet you never get a post deleted again. Unless you insult me. Mason likes me.
Abdul, Could you please empty your e-mailbox? Or e me with another address? I need to tell you of some minor anomalies on your Site. Thank you, Mike.
My post was not designed nor meant to label you as an idiot, not at all. I did in fact happen to question your remembered stats on the game you were in, that is true. The remainder of my post was partially a response to some of your comments, and partially just my "going off" on the subject of low limit poker, rake, and beatability.
You know how it is on a public forum, sometimes people question you, ask uncomfortable questions, or even blast the hell out of you. This is the third and last time I am going to say it, nothing personal Abdul, I was just asking hard questions and presenting a point of view that contradicted yours. The times I have posted things that have been incorrect or questionable, other players have not been nearly so nice about correcting or questioning me as I have been to you, or anyone else for that matter.
Your response on the rake subject does seem to clarify what you wrote somewhat. As I said in the response to 3 bet Brett, I might just say that makes perfect sense. Your response makes it seem somewhat more plausible.
I still strongly disagree with you on the subject of tipping, but I'm not going off on that again.
I have no comment on the subject of censorship on this forum, and have not yet read any of the responses posted after yours so as not to sway my opinion on this matter. Even after I read them I still intend to make no comments on censorship on 2+2. OK, maybe one comment, none of my posts have been deleted, so whatever the criterion for allowing a post to stay on the forum IS, I guess I have remained within the boundaries of acceptability.
I don't post on RGP for a couple reasons. First, I don't have enough time to keep track of two forums and all the posts and responses, I can hardly keep up with this one. Second, I HATE the way RGP is set up, it drives me crazy. For that reason alone I will probably never put much of anything on RGP.
This really wasn't a bone I had to pick with you, it was just a post that strongly disagreed with something you had said. If I have a personal bone to pick with someone, I will usually do it with email rather than take up valuable forum space with petty personal squabbles (and I prefer you do the same for me). The entirety of my post was within the realm of subject material appropriate to this forum and not a personalized dispute with you. People quote Mason and Dave all the time and disagree with them, sometimes harshly, they also do it to me, and obviously now they do it to you too.
I would like the discussions regarding my post to be related to it's content regarding poker and poker strategy, NOT to be based on some perceived battle between me and you (which doesn't exist). I DID put a lot of thought into my post, even if you or someone else happens to show me the error of my ways and proves me wrong on certain points I made (please provide proof with your blastings and ramblings). It's just a debate, that's all.
Dave in Cali
You claimed that, during your 4-8 short-handed holdem (4 players) session, in a matter of 3 hrs you won $700 and paid aprox. $200 in rake. Thus, your gross winning amounted to some $900.
Expressed in bare figures, a good dealer in a 4-handed table can easily deal out 30 - 35 hands per hour at $4.00 rake/hand for the casino to collect about $120/hour. For a 3-hour session, this would amount approximately $360.00 in rake. For you alone to pay/contribute $200 rake, then you must have won about 55% of all the hands dealt at the table. The other three participating players paid combined another $160 in rake.
Moreover, the remaining 3 players in the game lost:
$700 your net winning 200 your rake 160 the rake of 45% of their combined winnings, for a grand total of $1,160, for an average of $386 each.
This is all plausible. Here is what I find puzzling: How did you make these inexperienced short-handed 4-8 holdem players to stay with you and play that long a session, hopelessly watching their chips change hands? One or two, or perhaps all three must have gone to the cage (repeatedly?!) to replanish chips in an obviously futile attempt to win their money back.
You must have had them nearly hypnotize to continue playing in an overmatched game while suffering such staggering losses. I do not know how to look at it differently.
Indeed, an intrigueing experience.
Brett, I have played a few times at Sunset Station but the games were very tight. Have the games gotten alote better since then? The last time I played there was a year ago. My perception was that if you lost 20BB it would take alote of time and effort to get it back from the rocks.
The rake at Gila River is as follows: a $1 jackpot drop is taken immediately from the blinds ($2 and $4 at 4-8); $2 drop is taken at pot size 10, and $1 more drop is taken at pot size 30. They are USUALLY willing to reduce this short-handed, but there is no fixed policy. You have to ask each time.
Notice that, for short-handed / small pots, the percentage rake can be much higher than 10%, since so much is taken so early.
Part of the reason for my outrage over that rake is the jackpot drop. I consider that as just part of the rest of the rake, which may not be entirely fair of me, but here is my reasoning. First, there is at least one documented case of casino management skimming from the jackpot fund. Second, there have been many cases of dealers and/or players conspiring to arrange hitting a jackpot at a certain time, so you're at a disadvantage if you're not one of the scammers. Third, from a utility point of view, putting up $1 to gamble for the jackpot basically has a value of close to -$1, at least if your bankroll is small. Finally, it takes a lot of money out of the poker economy, which then gets redistributed to the IRS and various retailers.
And even without that jackpot drop, that rake is fairly Draconian, though not as bad as the $3 button charge in California.
"you're at a disadvantage if you're not one of the scammers. "
I've never heard it put quite that way before. Interesting.
I'm with you on that one, Abdul. I fully agree with Mike Caro's argument that jackpots are bad for poker. But around here, ALL of the low-limit players love them. For many of them, it is the main way they hope to win. (At least they got THAT concept right!)
The jackpot drop and rake are virtually identical at all the Arizona casinos that I have played at. Competition isn't working here; I have a feeling that most of the low limit players (up to 4-8) are oblivious.
Casinos here get huge response when they raise the jackpots or run other promotions like football pools. They wouldn't get nearly the same response if they lowered the rake by $1.
I heard very recently that the FBI swooped into the Bellagio cardroom and seized cards which were allegedly marked. They were allegedly used in the recent $20,000-$40,000 game. I was also informed that two very well known poker players are suspected of having been involved in cheating there. Has anyone else heard about this story, or is it being covered up?
How would you have heard this story without it being all over the internet if it were true? Many of the players who post here are regulars at the Bellagio.
The recent game was several weeks ago. How would anyone know which decks had been used? Are you just passing an unfounded rumor? Do you have a motive to spread this story? Maybe if you told us who you are, it would make a difference.
In case you had not noticed, I was very careful in my choice of language, using " alleged" twice, together with a "?" in the title. I am a European player with absolutely no axe to grind against the Bellagio or any other USA card-room. I got this story from a friend of mine who is over there right now and who plays regularly in Vegas, as I do. I'm not interested in slinging mud at anybody but believe that if a story is true then it should be told. For too many years lots of bad happenings in poker have been swept under the carpet. Most people who play poker are honest, I believe, and would support a policy of disclosing any shady goings-on.
Like you, I would prefer if this story were not true. All I asked was did anyone else know anything about it. So far the silence has been deafening.
Good points. Dont let some idiot that doesnt know how to read ruffle your feathers. Nothing wrong with the questions you asked...
Well, BIG ROD, it looks like you were the one with the ruffled feathers. You probably look cute in ruffled feathers. But, what do I know, I am an idiot. :-)
Seriously, I think it is bad to spread rumors about something like this. It is damaging to the Casino and to the game. Now we have a poster tagging on saying it is true. I doubt if that poster has any information at all. That poster is just trying to stir things up. Pretty soon, people start accepting the rumor as fact. If it were true, we would eventually hear about it from reliable sources.
After reading Omaholic’s response, I am sure it was just an innocent question. I apologize to Omaholic if I ruffled Omaholic’s feathers.
Mason, David, Jim, Roy, Abdul and other Bellagio regulars, what do you say.
dont get so touchy just because Omaholic's response made you look like a fool...
I must, in honesty, now say that I was wrongly informed re this story. I have now been told that there is NO basis for the specific situation which I posted here and regret any unnecessary angst which it may have caused.
I probably over reacted to your post. For some reason, I thought it was more than an innocent question. Obviously it was an innocent question. I am sorry for any angst I may have caused you. You are obviously an honorable person.
I have not played at the Bellagio for awhile but to the best of my knowledge I have never seen or even heard about cheating in any of these two cardrooms. I have heard that some players play off the same bankroll in some of the high limit games at the Bellagio but I do not consider this cheating.
There have been over 100 posts on RGP regarding alleged cheating. They were started by Mike Caro. There are some serious allegations but not specific. This is probably what led to what Omaholic heard.
Nolan Dalla made a great post regarding the subject. It is must reading. Posted on RGP 17 Apr 2001 22:06:02 GMT
I have names, but I'm not putting them out until something " official" emerges. This kind of s**t is nothing new, really, just a question of degree.
"Nolan Dalla made a great post regarding the subject. It is must reading. Posted on RGP 17 Apr 2001 22:06:02 GMT "
Is anyone aware of any games in the Dallas FTW area? I have played in one in Garland, and one in Arlington, But I do not have the persons phone number.
ive only been playing seriously for about a year but ive hit three royals since then. twice online at paradise and once last night in a live 6-12 kill. last nights was runner runner.. haha. was wondering if this is bizarre that ive hit 3 this quickly in my career or if they really arent that rare. ive talked to several people who've played much longer and theyve never hit one.
on a more a serious note, i have a question about drawing for a set, straight, flush. i understand how to calulate odds but my question is: when we say you need 8 to 1 pot or implied odds to continue with a small pocket pair hoping to snag a set (let's assume a safe rainbow flop) and then it doesnt come on the turn how do we then re-evaluate then? i mean, wasnt the 8 to 1 accounting for ones chances of hitting on the turn OR the river? do we then have to calculate the chance that one has postflop based on the fact one will likely have to call a BB on the turn? im playing in a very loose aggressive game and i want to be certain im playing these pocket pairs perfectly.. any help on the specifics of this sort of problem would be great. thanks in advance.
Your odds of hitting a set on the flop is about 7.5:1. This takes into acount all 3 cards coming on the flop. The odds of you spiking a set on the turn is FAR worse, and if you have an under pair to the board, and you don't get a free card, it is rarely correct to try and hit here. Your odds of hitting on the turn (1 card ) is 47:2. You need a very large pot to take one off correctly here, so unless there are 23 or so SB in the pot you should fold (in general). There are other circumstances where you may have more then 2 outs. For instance if you have 6's and the flop comes 8-7-4. Any 5 will give you a str8, giving you 4 more outs. However here spiking your 6 on the turn may give someone else a straight.
Just my thoughts.
You've hit more than your share of royals. You are therefore LESS likely to hit one next week than are other more luck-ballanced players. That last sentance is not true.
Ashworth gave a good response: you need 23sb in the pot and future bets before you can draw one-time to a beaton pocket pair. I would like to add, however, that if you are considering the chances of making a hand on more than one round then you need to compare those chances with the cost of investing on those rounds: if you are 10:1 against making it on the next two cards then it'll cost you usually around 1.5bb to draw. Loose aggressive games feature more raised rounds than checked rounds so your cost will be higher (i.e. you sometimes will need to call raises). Tight passive games feature more checked rounds then raised rounds so your estimated cost will be a little lower (i.e. you sometimes get a free card).
I now live in the LA area and am glad to have so many card rooms to play in. However, the thing that confuses me is why people say that LA is the greatest place to play poker and then I read post after post saying that the button charge here makes beating these games next to impossible. How can the top rated area for poker be so bad?
My guess is that when people say that LA is a good place to play, they are referring to the action. I've only played in LA for about 60 hours and I didn't like it because of the way the dealers were treated. To each his own measures.
I have never seen dealers treated as badly as they are at Hawaiian Gardens. Several players in Monday's NL tournament were just plain rude. Fortunately, they didn't follow me to the final table !
I prefer to play in Oceanside (Oceans 11) for ring games - the drop is taken from the BB. I have rarely run into anyone rude there. I usually only go to LA County for tournaments.
I expect san diego is similar to LA as far as why poker is good in cali, there is LOTS of action. LA probably has even more action than SD because it is so much bigger, with many more cardrooms. Tommy is right, when people say it's the best place to play poker, they are probably referring to the action. But the dead drop button charge makes the games much harder to beat, possibly unbeatable in some instances. I am lucky that I have the option to play places without the dead drop on the button, because I just won't play in one of those games. The drop on the flop is a better way of doing it, because the money you post counts towards your bet. It's still more expensive than a rake though, because that drop gets taken whether the pot reaches a certain size or not.
One thing IS for certain though, there is plenty of action in california. Also, here in southern cali the weather is just divine....
Dave in Cali
I assumed people were referring to the action as well. However, It has been conusing to hear so many contradictory things. For example, I read an article where Amarillo Slim said he didn't mind paying to play (on the button or on the clock) but he hated raked games because the money in THAT pot was his. Then I read on here that people think the games in LA are unbeatable because of the button charge but it's the best place to play because the action is so great. Well, is the action good enough to make up for the cost of playing? I've been having success out here but it still makes you wonder what the deal is.
The drop does not usually apply at higher limits in LA, which are charged by time.
For example, at HP the 6-12 game has a $3 button drop, while the 10-20 game has a charge of $10/hour (ie one small bet).
At 36 hands/hour, nine handed, you'll be paying $12/hour at the 6-12 game (one big get), which does make it more difficult to beat.
This is still not as bad as playing in a tight 4-8 game raked 10% plus a $1 jackpot, which can run as high as 1.5BB/hour.
Fairly loose, moderately aggressive game. 7 handed. Kill pot. UTG folds. I raise 2nd UTG with AcQc, button cold calls and killer (SB) calls, rest fold.
Flop is Q T 9 rainbow with one club. SB checks, I bet, both call.
Turn is an offsuit 5. SB checks, I bet, button raises. SB cold calls. I called here, but I should have folded. By calling here I also commit myself to calling again on the river, unless some highly threatening card comes. In hindsight, the button was not the type of player who would "make a move" on me. In this cardroom, there are lots of players who make moves, especially on the turn, and you often times have to call them down (and you often wind up having the best hand too). In this case though, with the flop cards all being in a straight zone, the only hands that made sense for the button to have would be a straight or a set, or perhaps two pair. The two pair was relatively unlikely, so I should have put him on either a set or straight. If he was a tight player, I would put him on a set, which he must have hit on the flop. In this game, who knows.
Anyway, I called him on the river too (another blank). He flopped a straight with the Jc8c. While my opponent made a bad play by calling my raise pre-flop, I made two bad plays by calling his turn raise and river bet. It should have been obvious I was beat, and should therefore fold. Against a hyper-aggressive or tricky opponent, calling him down would have been the right play, but against this guy, I should have just got out....
Dave in Cali
The only way to lay this down on the turn is if you know the player well enough to know that he is holding a better hand. I would have probably done the same as you did unless I know I am beat (like you did).
I don't think you knew you were beat, or you wouldn't have even thought of calling the turn and river. I think in hindsight you knew, but definitely not at the time.
Just My Thoughts.
Since you do know this player, it does sound like you should get out.
Remember GD's Rule? "In a loose passive game, if you are raised on the Turn or River, TOP PAIR IS BEATEN." So true. And furthermore, the cold caller in between you should concern you too - although he could very well have a straight draw and be calling all bets.
One thing you are absolutely right about: the Turn raise is the time to take a position. It is pretty wishy-washy poker to call the Turn raise and then fold the river.
Also, if you fold here, the next time you are in a similar situation, you have to watch out for the tricky opponents, and perhaps call a raise by them that you wouldn't necessarily always call.
Come on Dave!
If you’re going to make plays like this I’m going to have to leave these nice blue skies in Nor. Cal. and go on down to smogville So.Cal. to where you play and get some of that easy money. Oh yeah, I guess the San Diego area does see blue skies quite a bit.
So perhaps I misread my player and called when I should have folded, but I get to say "Another Flawless day!" about 275 times a year!
Actually, Dick had it right. Loose passive player raises turn, fold. I got thrown off because this cardroom is full of tricky players, often times you have to just call them down. Once I bet and then reraised when I flopped top pair with AJ, it got capped, I called him down and he had QJ and my kicker won. Common situation in this cardroom, but NOT with this player. Thus "Bad Play".
Dave in Cali
If you KNOW he has 2 pair or better: If he'll call the raise with J8 (16) he'll also call with KJ (16), QQ (1), TT(3), 99(3) so you are drawing dead with 40 hands. But he'll call with QT(6) Q9(6) and T9(9) for 21 hands giving you on average 6 outs or 38 bad cards or a little more than 6:1. But you are getting only 7.5:1 pot odds. So you can call if you KNOW he has exactly 2pair but when combined with the other hands looks like a routine fold.
However:  You need to KNOW he'll only raise with a better hand  You should be quite conserned with the SB calling the double bet  You do NOT have to pay it off since lots of these guys will take a stab only once.
Last night a guy slow rolled me in a game and it really teed me off. Briefly, it was a large pot, final board had a Queen as the highest card, no flush/straight possibilites. I had pocket Kings. Showed them, remaining players in pot mucked, this one guy acted like he didnt have anything, started to act like he was going to muck, then was like "Oh, look what Ive got" and showed pocket rockets. It really teed me off and although I didnt go on tilt (maybe that's what he was trying to get me to do?) it still layed on my mind for a while. What should I have done, if anything? I thought about slow rolling him when I got a chance, but then thought, why stoop to his level? I think people that slow roll are a**holes. I think there should be some etiquette in poker. Anyone suggestions on what to do with someone like this or when something like this happens?
If they do it to me once, I keep it to myself and say nothing. If they do it twice, all's fair in war....
One time a guy kept doing that to everyone, including twice to me. So a few hands later, in a very large kill pot, I had made a full house on the turn, but he kept raising me anyway. I didn't have the nuts, but I had a strong hand, so I bet into him on the river one last time and got raised again. (there was three of a kind on the board, so he could have had quads). When he showed me his STRAIGHT, I looked disappointed and sighed, then started to muck my hand, then said "oh look, all I have is a measly little full house, would you look at that...". To piss him off more I immediately cashed out (which I was going to do anyway).
I would never do this to anyone mind you, unless they thoroughly deserved it....
Dave in Cali
I hate rudeness to strangers but but I'm in a game where everyone slow rolls all the time, and it's hilarious and breaks the monotony. It also helps limit your emotional investment in particular pots. If your perspective on slowrolling makes you uncomfortable, chosing another one might be easier than making others behave.
In the situation you mention, it's perfectly OK. In my post, the man doing the slowrolling was being a generalized jerk, thus my reaction. As you point out, it may be the case that no needling is occurring, and it's perfectly acceptable to slowroll or be slowrolled, as the case may be.
You have a good point about limiting your emotional investment in pots by not getting too upset about things like this.
Dave in Cali
Just try your best to ignore him. Either you win or you don't. You shouldn't show an emotion or reaction no matter what happens, win or lose. If you act the same no matter what happens, people can't mess with you.
Just laugh and tip your cap.
Having fun is just part of playing poker. Just the other day I bluffed some guy out with a busted straight draw and at the river he showed me his kings and mucked, and I go "no wonder i couldn't make the straight!" and he got pissed off. I can't figure out why.
I'm convinced that the absolute best reaction to a slowroll is no reaction at all. Any reaction at all is a victory for the bad guy. Aloofness says many things, among them: "You can't hurt me." "I am above your pettiness."
It also makes it easier to play the next hand(s) well.
I completely disagree. Whenever you are slowrolled you should make a note of it, then pull the same move on the guy next time a mammoth pot comes up. Some people will immediately retaliate, and slowroll their hand at the next available opportunity, but this isn't nearly as satisfying as waiting.
Also, when you do slowroll the guy, really put on an act-- hem and haw, shake your head, tap your cards on the felt, and then-- and this is important-- just as you turn your wrist back, as if to discard, turn your arm up and flip you cards. If possible, make sure to toss the cards TOWARDS the guy, so he can get a good look at them. All this should be done just as the dealer is gathering the mountain of chips and preparing to ship them to the clown in question.
It also helps if, once he sees that your 79o has cracked his A's with running 7's, you look at him, turn your eyes towards his hand, then nod your head and tell him to 'get it fixed'.
I am the true master of this play, although I don't have to do it very often. But when I get the chance I don't pass it up. It's a lot of fun, for one thing, and it almost invariably has the effect of putting the idiot on a kind of mini-tilt that can last anywhere from 15 minutes to upwards of an hour.
If you can genuinely ignore it without it distracting you then do so.
But if you are a real human being:  "Yes, your right to be an a**hole is guaranteed in the Constitution"  "I'll bet your Mom is real proud of the way you turned out"  Issue and immediate challenge that he indicated he folded and therefore he has a dead hand. Yes you will lose but you bring his unethical acts to the attention of the Floor.  Tell the floor that this jerk is slowing down the rake and chasing away the new players.
I get stuff like that all the time. My response is to laugh and say "Nice hand sir!". That way even though you lost the hand you still won the psychological battle. And yes, I will look for the chance to give him one back before he busts out (which these types generally do).
I like the line Elliott Gould used in the movie "California Split". They're playing in an old Gardena room, and one guy is being very obnoxious. Showdown comes and obnoxious guy (OG) turns over his hand, and Gould sits there shaking his head sadly, and says, "I didn't think you were that good."
OG starts to pull in the pot (they dealt their own cards in Gardena back then), and Gould says "Hey wait a minute. I've got (such and such). I just didn't think you were that good!"
OG and one of his buddies then proceed to beat the crap out of Gould in the parking lot and rob him, George Segal comes to his rescue, and they become buddies, etc. etc.
Fun pic with a couple of great scenes. But I digress.
Exactly why does this anger you? You should welcome a slow roller to your game. The reason he slow rolls is that he is confused and doesn't realize he has the winning hand. He was probably on the verge of mucking it. I guess you'd rather play against a good player who always makes the right moves.
roger that - and he gets everybody on tilt
Haven't read the other responses as yet, but it appears, from the volume of responses, that slow-rolling is a sore subject with lots of people.
Slow rollers should be slow-rolled. I find it satisfying to forego winning one more bet, when the situation arises, and just call with the nuts, let the slow-roller show his hand, nod my head as if his hand is good, and then, just before apparently mucking, turn over the winner.
If this situation doesn't arise, I suggest walking over to the slow roller, picking him up out of his seat, slapping him silly for 5-10 minutes, calling him an a-hole, and then throwing up all over his new pants. Slow rollers are despicable, the scum of the earth.
Other than that, they don't bother me.
So what if you are slowrolled? Play poker.
When people do things like that it is usually so absurd I can't help but feeling like laughing at it. This guy just declared war on you. Cool heads prevail on the green felt battlefield. Jeez, there are lots of worse things that could happen in a poker game. You could lose, for instance.
When you develop the proper mental toughness and long-range outlook for the game these things won't really bother you.
I have seen some posts from players on this site regarding their poker plays on an on-line casino, and I was wondering if any one makes signifigant money playing on-line poker or are their too many restictions/differences to allow you to " get the best of it ", like not having a real person across from you to " read " during the play of a hand.
I am a winning player who is partially supplementing my income with poker, so if people are winning money on the net, i would be highly interested, as my casino is a distance away from my home. please give me your experiences with on-line poker.
I have been running over these games. And the great thing is, the kind of theory in the 2+2 publications is perfectly suited to clobbering these games. These are the games 2+2 was meant for.
This is not true of the games most people play in. Loose games, even in the mid limits like 15-30, are simply a matter of 'turn over the best hand and win'. Not much skill to that. Easy to beat for sure, but no challenge.
But you can really use the whole arsenal of fancy plays to maximize your earn online. And it is intellectually stimulating.
There is no way I am going to get into specifics about how to beat online games because I like the games just the way they are.
thanks for the imput.
I figue i can beat the internet games, because i am a winner in real life ring games and can crush my hoyle casino poker game. for ex: i can fequently take $10,000 on my poker game and turn it into $300,000 in two hours computer simulation time, by taking a lower bankroll to the $1,000-$2000, $2,000-$4,000, $10,000-$20,000 limits after a win a few large pots. I fique if i can outplay a computer simulated to bluff; check-raise, play tight/AGRESSIVE, even semi-bluff occasionaly, i can beat people on the net....
"And the great thing is, the kind of theory in the 2+2 publications is perfectly suited to clobbering these games. These are the games 2+2 was meant for."
"There is no way I am going to get into specifics about how to beat online games because I like the games just the way they are. "
Didn't you just do that or am I missing something?
Send me an e-mail, Eddy, and I'll give you some info you may like.
I've won $1,400 or so over the last month playing 1/2 and a tiny amount of 2/4. This is the first month I've been playing this regularly (few hours a day) and I think it's been a good month, but I'm definitely a consistent winner. I would estimate at least 2BB/hr (playing two tables), but I don't really have any mathematical justification for that.
"This is the first month I've been playing this regularly (few hours a day) and I think it's been a good month, but I'm definitely a consistent winner."
I think you still haven't played enough to say you're definitely a consistent winner. Did you already have a serious losing streak? (>100BB?)
I've been playing for a year or so, just not as regularly as I have over the last month. I would have logged, at a rough guess, 500 hours of playtime on two tables. I've had one 100 BB losing streak and many 50+ BB losing streaks, but I don't expect to see anything too drastic happen to me on 1/2 because my win rate is so good. I have total winnings on Paradise of over $3,000, playing 1/2 when it became available and before that a little 50/1 and mostly 2/4.
FWIW, Paradise was actually my first foray into "live" poker, outside of computer games and home games. I started playing in October 2000, with very little fundamental background, and as might be imagined, I got rocked to the tune of about $1500 between Oct and the end of the year.
At the beginning of January, after much study and practice on TTH, I deposited $100, and built it up to a little less than $700 (playing mostly 2-4 HE and O8). At that point, I cashed out $300 to balance that $100 purchase, and the last $200 from the previous year, which was outstanding on my credit card.
I hit a rough patch, fell back to about $150, and deposited another $100. Since then, I have not looked back, and my current balance on Paradise (still from 2-4 HE and O8, and a little 3-6 at both games) now stands around $1300. This rise from January to now spans a little less than 400 hours (yes, I need to get a life!)
The lion's share of this time has been at 2-4 HE, where I've played about 150 hrs, and have won almost exactly $8/hr, so if a relative novice can have this level of success, I'm sure anyone can.
The games are definately beatable.
I have played well over 1000 hours on paradise and planet and I am way up at 2/4 through 10/20 (I am really up if you take away the learning curve and heads up play). I too learned to play online first because MN didn't have a casino yet. The only game I seem to find tough is the 5/10 as the players seem to be simply better.
I quit for a while and cashed out my online bankroll because I was getting bored. I started again a few weeks ago and have already cashed out my investment and am playing with a significant stake (for me).
The biggest problem I have online is when I play two hands which really takes a ton of concentration to know your opponents - especially with them moving in and out so quickly. I had to put in a hard rule not to surf the Internet between hands.
A dangerous trap is to beat one table and then say, "well hell, I can beat two at the same time!".
I find it hard to play live now as the play seems so damn slow and the rake is so much higher.
I'll probably get flamed for this but...
Steve Badger has some good advice at his website for online play.
anyone interested in getting a game started in Oahu? preferrably in Waikiki or honolulu??
It seems to me that AA is 4:1 to win in a heads up situation against 2 random cards. Is this number correct?
What are the odds that KK wins heads up against 2 random cards?
Thanks In Advance.
I just ran a million hands each on Caro's Poker Probe and got 4.7 to 1 for the kings and 5.75 to 1 for the aces.
I've been keeping records for a little over a year now and am wondering if there is a minimum amount of time you would include in your recordkeeping. I have occasion to play for a short period of time, perhaps 45 minutes and don't feel that this is an adequate amount of time to record as you don't have enough time to make up for any shortterm bad beats etc. or conversely a run of good card (played with skill of course). Is there a minimum,say 2 hours?? Or should you record all play even 1/2 hour or less?
I think you have to record everything. The total of four 1/2 hour sessions is no less valid than one two hour session.
So what if one session is hopeless skewed in favor of extreme luck? If you want your actual results to closely reflect your expected results you need to play 500-1000 hour sessions.
Record them all.
There is no point recording information you arent going to use. If you dont plan on using it dont record it.
Short sessions can make noticable "blips" in your statistics, but, in the long run, they have a negligible effect, especially if they are comparatively rare.
Some people get rid of the "blips" by adding their short sessions to a prior or next session. For example, if you played 15 minutes of 3-6 hold 'em, you might add your win/loss and session duration to your last 3-6 hold 'em session.
Remember that short sessions can cause "outlyers" in your data. No need to despair or get a big head because a 15 minute session causes a large hourly loss or win rate for that session.
Anyone read Zen and the art of poker of Inside the poker mind? Any comments would be great. Thanks
Bob Ciaffone recommended it in one of his CardPlayer columns. A friend of mine gave me his copy to read. Its purpose was to keep you from going on tilt or losing control of yourself based on Far Eastern ways of thinking like Zen and the like. The book did nothing for me.
The only poker psychology book that I have ever read that I could relate to was a new book by Dr. Alan Schoonmaker entitled "The Psychology of Poker".
In all honesty, I am not really into the psychological aspects of poker as much as others and I believe they are over emphasized in full tabled limit hold'em games.
One of the values of the Schoonmaker book is that it gets you to look at your own motives for what you do and how they affect your play.
I highly recommend the twoplustwo "Psychology of Poker". That kind of knowledge is useful even at a full table in a limit game. I don't need to ask a calling station why he called with nothing - because Schoonmaker already told me. Hence, I knew he'd call and had already adjusted my game accordingly.
The other thing it helped me with was going on tilt - I was able to adjust my game from wanting to win the most pots to wanting to win the most money. Last night I played for three hours and K10o was the best hand I saw! So, I mostly watched for three hours - and kept my losses to a minimum.
Thirdly, it has been helping me to move my game to that tight, but aggressive mode of poker that seems to make me the most money.
I also read the Zen of Poker and I don't remember any of it. On the other hand, "The Psychology of Poker" made an impact.
Yes, sound play dominates EV at full tables. Psycology battles are best reserved for mano-a-mano combat.
But I suspect you have fallen into the same mistake the Authors had been guilty: you presume that because YOU have great personal emotional control doesn't mean that the rest of us do. Yes, we "shouldn't" need help but we "do".
It surprises me the comments i read about both books here.
I thought the zen book was better in many ways. the other book after buying felt quite ripped off. I felt i had some weak tight player telling continually about things i can't do, recommending plays which were very weak and the author left me w/the impression he was imparting some extremely valuable and yet unknown advice. I could say it was unknown but its value was quite small.
I thought the zen book was trying to impart a particular philosophy but this philosoply was consonant with the other poker writings.
I would easily recomment "Zen and the art of poker." while recommending that most just read through parts of ,"Pschy of Poker" in the bookstore. I wish i had!
If what you mean by the psychological aspects of poker are things like 'table image' than I completely agree with you. However, I think we part ways if you extend this to mean things like having a balanced and phlegmatic approach to the game.
As I was saying, before I accidently hit the post button...
Take fly fishing. Your perspective on the hobby may not change the results. You can be 'at war' with the fish, or feel that you're taking part in an ancient pagaent, and either way you may fill your creel. But I don't doubt for a minute that the latter way is more fruitful, if only because it brings you closer to understanding why the good life is the pleasant life.
The same can be said for poker. While the point of the game is to win money, I think you can be a 'good' poker player even if your a lifetime loser, just a one can be a good fisherman even if he never catches a fish. The results are important, but not nearly as much so as one's approach to the game, and how one merges with the process.
Ahem indeed; I thought you were clearing the phlegmatic from your lungs.
Thanks for all the responses!
Ah John, the quintessential wise ass..... here I am, trying to broaden the meager horizons of the flop rats that frequent these pages, and yet still I must contend with you and your vicious little barbs. Go home and read some Carver, then call me in the morning when your humour has improved. :)
"you can be a good poker player even if you are a lifetime loser".
I don't see how this can be possible and if it were being a "good poker player" would be meaningless.
I lean toward the western, occidental(?) approach as expressed by Branch Rickey and Stu Ungar.
Branch Rickey: "Show me a team full of "good losers" and I will show a team full of losers.
Stu Ungar: "Show me a happy loser and I will show you an idiot."
No one with a modicum of self-respect should ever feel happy about losing. Of course, they must learn not to show it and keep a "stiff, upper lip" but it is only by having passion for the game that you can improve. Part of having passion is not being happy about getting poor results and resolving to do something about it.
Putting yourself in some altered mental state as a way of coping with losing and life's problems is nothing more than living in a state of self-induced idiocy.
"Putting yourself in some altered state as a way of coping with losing and life's problems' is nothing more than living in a state of self-induced idiocy".
Jim, when a karate practitioner breaks a board with his bare fists, he has to go into an altered state. When Tiger Woods hits the perfect swing, he goes into an altered state. When Michael Jordan was "in the zone", he was in an altered state. A master rock climber going to the top of El Capitan in Yosemite National Park without the aid of a rope has to go into an altered state.
As long as there is no drugs involved, there is absolutely nothing wrong with going into altered states. The ability to enter positive altered states is the key to creativiy and solving life's problems and turning loses into long term victories and learning opportunities.
I've only read Zen, BUT the message IS whether you win or lose, learn to be happy(satisfied) with yourself. There are losses in life (games or poker sessions) and as long as you know that you played your best game, you may not be satisfied with the results, but can still look at yoursef in mirror and smile! Daryl Strawberry is a winner in baseball and money, he has a big hole in his psyche that he tries to fill with drugs. We need to enjoy da game and life!!
Thank God everyone doesn't think like you do Jim. The "good" players have been blessed with the fact that the majority of poker players just think of poker as "gambling", same as craps or slots or blackjack. While I do agree with your philosophy, I certainly ain't going to spread it around to my opponents at the table! I was so determined not to be a loser at casino poker that I had already read three books before I ever played my first game, and had read about fifteen books within two months of starting play. Still though, let the magoos think it is all luck, and let them cope with losing in whatever way makes them feel better. As long as they keep doing this, we will continue to take their money.
dave in cali
You wrote: "No one with a modicum of self-respect should ever feel happy about losing."
And: "Putting yourself in some altered mental state as a way of coping with losing and life's problems is nothing more than living in a state of self-induced idiocy."
I enjoy black and white photography. Really, I do. But when I look at the world around me, I see a splendor of magnificent color.
The important thing, Jim, in ANY endeavor is to value the process-- not the result. If a player walks into a casino once every two weeks, sits down at the table, enjoys the pace of the game and the camaraderie of the other players, and STILL drops 200 bucks every session in his 6-12 game then I don't have a problem saying that poker has enriched this man's life.
It depends on how you define good. If you mean 'competent', or 'adroit', then no. But if you allow room for a definition such as 'someone who places value exclusively on the process', then you have to agree with me.
What this comes down to, Jim, is what do you value? Personally, I don't give a damn if somebody wins. Beating the game doesn't take a rocket scientist, so I discount that-- much in the same way I'd discount somebody who boasted about how they continually beat their 6 yr. old nephew at Monopoly.
If 'beating the game' makes you feel like a winner, Jim, then don't let me get in your way. But there are other ways to approach the question, and you should sensitize yourself to these.
"The results are important, but not nearly as much so as one's approach to the game, and how one merges with the process. "
People are constantly asking my why I don't play higher stakes than I do. While I can afford to play higher, I play poker for more reasons than just making money. I have been playing poker for money since I was nine years old, but have only been serious about it for a few years. I play for enjoyment, even more so than for money. This is a large part of the reason why I rarely play higher than 4-8 kill. I just haven't found the higher limit games to be as enjoyable as the lower limit games. Add to this the predominance of bad players at low limits, plus my local cardroom having such a cheap time charge, and I have simply chosen thusfar to primarily stick with "the pleasant life".
Dave in Cali
You have not read "inside the poker mind"? I would consider that a poker psychology book, even though that may be a loose categorization of John's work. A good deal of this book has to do with strategy more than psychology, but both are discussed in various chapters.
Alan Schoonmaker's book won't turn you into a psychological holdem genious. And you are right, the psychological aspects of holdem are overrated by many players. I believe that what Alan's book teaches you is not only how people play, but why they play that way. It also gives you good generalized advice about how to play against different player types. If you have a style which is detrimental to your poker winnings, reading Alan's book might help you change your style for the better. It strongly emphasizes that people "play the way that they are". Passive people tend to play passive poker, etc.... Playing good poker might require you to play much differently from the way you are in real life. Face it, most people aren't tight-aggressive by nature. It's just not natural to play this way, but it's essential to winning at this game.
On the whole, I think psychology and tells are maybe a total of 5% of the game of holdem, at least at a typical full ring game.
From having met you, I suppose Zen doesn't have much use for you because you are less prone to tilt than other players.
Dave in Cali
Would you include High Hand wins in your poker wins for statistical purposes - i.e., wins per hour, standard deviation, etc.? I have never won a bad beat jackpot, but I wouldn't include this. I think this is an abnormality and would skew everything off too much. Just wondering about High Hands.
I don't see any reason for 'high hand wins' or 'wins per hour' either.
Jim Brier told me some time ago that you can calculate your rake expense by determining the number of hands you may win per hour and offset the jackpot to the amount you paid in rakes. Seemed reasonable. I recently won a bad beat Jackpot along with a high hand jackpot. I just created another catagory for jackpots, but did not apply any more than my calculated rake to my actual poker winnings. Right or wrong?
I was curious if you guys play or have played a lot of no limit or pot-limit ring games? If not, why? I am curious on your reasoning about these games.
ive played many years worth of both and i like them because im good at them.
can somebody give me information/tips about how to play heads up? everytime i venture into it i get killed. i am a winning player full table and short handed (in fact i prefer short handed) but as soon as i get to heads up i seem to get killed. even against 2 players i play well but heads up?? against weak tight players i win but against aggressive players it always seems just a shoot out with me getting shot down most of the time. their constant raising has me calling them down with what i think is a reasonable hand only to be shown something better or they seem to be able to sense when i have them beaten and fold.
anything much appreciated.
As you suggest you are no-doubt projecting tells partly due to your paranoia.
Both you and the opponent are either winning outright or showing down all your good hands (2nd pair or better). The aggressive player is winning almost all the pots where neither of you have much of anything. As long as that continues you need to minimize your losses in these hands.
You need to play less hands before and on the flop, but then routinely call him down letting him flog himself to "death" (e.g. investing in weak hands when you have strong hands). That is, play few hands that won't actually win lots of showdowns which CERTAINLY includes those hands that you tend to fold along the way (e.g. those that tend to make 3rd pair or worse).
Once you see a change in morale in the opponent (due to frustration) AND your morale is high, THEN you can (and should) go on the offensive, over-powering the opponent and cowling HIM into your position.
There is a short handed section in HEPFAP that is very good, and there is a very good page that I like to refer to on this subject.
I hope this helps.
My advice is mostly for no-limit heads-up play, but the concepts could be used for limit.
When you are 1st to act or when the pot is big, you have to win in the showdown. So you have to be playing better hands when you are out of position or trying to win by showdown. Being first to act with a good hand is the perfect time to take advantage of your opponents aggression. Let him bluff and bet the hand for you.
When you are second to act you need to win the small pots without a showdown. I usually do this when I have a decent but not great hand pre-flop. I put in a raise pre-flop, then follow through with a bet on the flop if my opponent checks. Just be careful that your opponent isn't trying you use YOUR aggression against you. This is easy to look out for if you opponent is agressive himself. He will usually just call you pre-flop and on the flop if he has a good hand and is trying to use your aggression to his advantage. Then you can slow down some if you feel you can't get him out of there. Heads-up play (especially no-limit) is all about "feel" if you don't have great instinct you will drown. You also have to know your opponent well.
My last advice is to play only hands that can stand up by themselves, i.e. big cards like KJ, Q-10 along with Ak-A2. Also, small pairs are great to trap aggressive opponents with when you spike a set. Forget about the drawing hands like 67s unless it is no-limit and there is no raise pre-flop and you can get great implied odds if you hit.
Avoid aggressive players. They make for the worst opponents heads up. But if you insist on fighting these guys, you have to have the right attitude. Put yourself in a state of mind where you can win any heated argument. Then frivolously and ferociously argue with your chips.
Capping preflop from the blind with QQ is a losing play.
you made this statement in a thread on the middle limits board in reference to a 20/40 hand. please expand on this.
Assuming someone will only 3 bet with AA, KK, QQ AQs...
You are dominated by A's (6 combinations) and K's (6). You are very close to even money with AK (16) and Q's (1). You dominate AQs (2). So in this scenario you are losing money.
But what if you are the BB the button open raises, SB three bets the steal raise, and you can cap it... Is this a good position to cap. For sure. The three bet standards of a SB protecting against a steal raise are much lower then AQs minimum. Also, the button could have almost any 2 cards.
I agree with 3BetBrett that in some circumstances it is a losing position... but I don't agree with this all of the time.
Just My Thoughts.
Although it may be better off not to cap even in your example to reap greater benefits postflop.
But the flip side of the coin is that if a solid player calls 2 raises cold from the bb, that would scare me more than if he were to cap it so maybe there isn't much to be gained by adding in that little deception after all.
But I think that the reason why you should not cap with QQ out of the bb when facing two legit raises is that:
1. Usually, you are either a huge dog or a small favourite
2. In those instances where you are a small favourite, the hand plays better postflop if you get undercards flopping eg. you bet out and the initial raiser with TT or whatever raises and helps you get rid of the AK who of course would be your primary concern.
3. If you happen to catch a Queen on the flop, many players will not read you for such a strong set postflop.
Point No. 2 is usually the most important factor.
Points 1 and 2 sum it up. Even if you are a small favorite, you have the worst position. This is a huge disadvantage which is not offset by being the favorite. It is best to proceed with caution when you have a vulnerable pair in the blind.
Say you are the SB w/ 99 and only 3 other players besides you pay to see the flop. The flop comes 9,2,5. You are first to act -- should you check-raise or should you slow play it and check-call hoping to check-raise on the turn(or maybe bet out hoping to induce a bluff raise by another player?)? It seems like if you are the first to act or are in very early position that it might be smart to just check-raise the flop and then bet out on the turn b/c if you check-call the flop and then check on the turn hoping to check-raise you run the risk of not having anyone bet and then not getting paid off on your hand. I realize that not getting paid off and not having anyone bet is an inherent danger in slowplaying and check-raising but it seems to be more risky when you are in early position. I'm fairly new to the game so I am unsure about what the correct play is in this type of game. Any comments/advice would be appreciated.
This is very dependent on the opponents that see the flop with you and at what level you are playing. Often in low limit I just bet out on the flop. People will pay you off anyway. In higher limits people are smart enough to lay down overcards. At these limits people generally have to have a hand to call you with, so let them make a second best hand.
It also depends on whether the board is suited (or twotone) or not.
There are many ways to play this type of hand, and no one way is correct. Mix it up so people can't always put you on a monster.
Against a pre-flop raisor, I'll typically bet out here, and just call a raise (except in multiway pots where any card can draw you out).
Bet-reraise-reraise-reraise should be the first thing you think of and be done often.
You correctly deduce that slow-playing in early position offers considerably more risk than slow-playing in late position. Therefore, slow-play less in early position.
Some non-compelling considerations:
o There is a diffence between playing from the blinds and playing UTG: You can have a WIDE variety of hands in the blinds AND are much more likely NOT to have flopped anything. At least UTG you are almost guaranteed to have at least two strong over-cards. So if the flop is KQ9 you can safely check-raise or slow-play from the blinds (since checking seems so natural) but it would be SUICIDE to get fancy if you had called UTG, since EVERYBODY knows a tight-player UTG hit that flop hard.
o If you bet often from the blinds when small cards flop (such as against weak-tight players who quickly fold non-top-pair hands) then you should also bet the monsters. If you routinely check then you should pretty much check everything.
o Aggressive players will bet hands good enough to call, so slow-playing and check-raising works quite well: if you give a free card its because they don't have anything. Most all other players will call with more hands then they will bet so you should routinely bet against these sorts of players, whether weak-tight or weak-loose.
o Weak-loose players routinely call the flop "one time" so its important to bet and raise the flop in order to get this "one time" money in your stack.
o Slow-playing hoping the opponents make something (such as an over-pair) is a relatively minor consideration since it regularly conflicts with your other over-all strategies AND they aren't going to hit very often anyway.
o Consider whether you WANT the opponents to see you slow-play a monster or not.
two things about your post...
First, you consider check-raising the flop and also check-calling the flop. I think if you are concerned with winning as big a pot as you can, you should consider betting the flop as well. If someone raises you can reraise, or you could just call and then bet or check-raise the turn. I like betting with a set on the flop then reraising, because it usually makes the pot you win bigger than any other possible play. If you are so concerned with winning a big pot, check-raising the flop is likely to make people fold, which will not increase your pot size. In this situation you hand is borderline on strong enough to slowplay for a round, but that doesn't mean a slowplay is going to be the best play... Also, betting completely eliminates the chance of it getting checked around. Better to collect something on your good hands than nothing. Also, if you check the flop and everyone checks, then you bet the turn, they will probably all fold. Betting the flop gives you the best chance of winning a big pot.
Second, betting to induce a bluff-raise by another player is hoping for a longshot. checking to induce a bluff is one thing, but betting to induce a bluff raise...? Unless you have hyper-aggressive players or maniacs in the game, this is probably just a pipe dream.
Dave in Cali
Generally speaking you should bet out, especially if there's a good chance that the next card will be an overcard to the flop. Since the average HE player has no reservations about calling the aformentioned flop with KJo, you should bet, hoping he pairs the turn, then lead bet the turn hoping to make it three bets. Unless people are genuinely PAYING ATTENTION to how you're playing you should play most hands in a straight-forward manner.
Floor Decision Taj ------------------
This is a hand I played last weekend at the Taj, I'm really unhappy with the floors decision and wonder what others think.
First my disclaimers... I had been playing way to many hours ( like 40), and was in need of some sleep, so I was not as observant as I normally would have been. Game is 15 - 30 Holdem
I limp behind 3 limpers on the button with 5h,6h.
Small blind (new to the game just bought in this ends up being very important), a notorious jerk in the room who is always on some sort of an angle raises... his play while he thinks it is tricky is quite predictable and this raise means AK, QQ or better. BB folds all limpers call and we take the flop 5 handed.
Flop ------ 2h, 4x, 4h
Small blind bets out and states $15 all in. Now he had just bought in for $500, but that escapes me at the moment, and I am in the 6 seat while he is in the 7 seat and I did not look back to check his stack... but he clearly stated all in, the whole table heard it and nobody stopped the action. Two middle position callers who I presume have overcards call, and I raise my flush - back door str8 draw into the limpers... I am not worried about the paired board as I do not give either limper credit for even a pair, and the player I know has an over pair is "all in" and can not three bet me. If he is not all in I would not raise here as he will 3 bet in this spot 100% of the time. HE now raises to $45 ??? and I stop the action and call for the floor. He starts screaming that he knows the floors decision will be that my raise stands and his re raise as well, and that it is my fault for not checking to make sure he was not lying when he called all in. The floor agrees and I demand the shift manager, as I would not have raised if he had not called all in. The shift manager eventually comes, and agrees as well with the caveat that the player will be kicked out of the room for 24 hours after the hand is over. While we are arguing this out one of the mid position limpers mucks A,2 face up. His three bet clears out the other limper, I call the 2x on the turn. The Kh's comes on the river he checks I bet he calls and my flush is good ( he had QQ). I made the decision to distribute the $45 investment in the pot back to the player with A,2 as I believe he would have called my raise, and subsequently filled on the turn.
Just wondering how others think the ruling should have been made.
Obviously a new player can't buy in for $15 so his "all-in" pronouncement is not valid and you should know that. But this is a very sleazy thing to say on his part and I would give a much longer suspension then the Taj did, assuming he has a history of this type of thing. OTOH, sometimes good guys say some silly things at the table, but this probably was not the case here.
"... it is my fault for not checking to make sure he was not lying when he called all in ... I made the decision to distribute the $45 investment in the pot back to the player with A,2 as I believe he would have called my raise, and subsequently filled on the turn."
well, my initial reaction is that youre both crazy, but upon further reflection it sounds like youre a very novice player and that you shouldnt be playing for significant money.
no offense, im basing my opinion on my remembrance of my mindset when i was a complete novice.
it sounds like especially on the east coast, you really have to have a killer instinct.
The floor made the right decision. Remember, the first rule of poker is to protect your own hand. In a sense you didn't do a very good job here.
The dealer should also be suspended for 24 hours. How could the dealer not have questioned the player's assertion that he was all in?
The floor person's decision is probably technically correct. Were I the floorman, were I convinced that the the idiot did indeed say "all in", I would have declared his hand immediately dead for cheating. To me, it's the same as when someone says "raise" and then puts in only an amount to call. Their verbal declaration should be binding. And in this case, his verbal declaration was a deliberate lie intended to effect the play of the hand. If the incident is repeated, the player should be permanently barred from the club. It's not an angle, it's cheating, pure and simple.
Sean: I'm wondering if anyone else at the table spoke up to verify that he did say loud and clear "all in". If they did then the floor is definitley wrong. I can't agree with some of the other posters that it was your fault for not being aware as to how much he bought in for. Although you should be 100% attentive its almost impossible when play is going on and the waitress take your coffee order or you receive your drink etc. The dealer has a certain responsiblity also as previously mentioned. IMO the floor was clearly in error.
The guy just bought in and says all-in on betting the flop. I have to think he's making a (very small) joke. I don't see how he could be making a play, with how many chips right in front of him? I guess you were sleepy like you said.
I raise first in with black pocket nines. I get five callers including the BB.
Flop comes 2 2 7 rainbow. Checked to me, I bet, I get one caller, the BB.
Turn comes another 7, making a two flush. BB checks and I bet. He raises and I fold.
This was a bad play because I should have realized that there wouldn't be much that the BB would have called with on the flop that I could beat now. also, he checked to me, and I could have taken a free card. Had I caught a nine, I could have probably beaten him out of several more bets. Or if I missed, I could have either called him on the river if he bet, or I could have folded if I believed he had me beat. Anyway, this was a bad play that cost me a big bet at the least, and may have cost me the pot and several more bets. So when the board has very little on it, and your opponent calls your bet, you should consider what he is probably calling you with.
Dave in Cali
I agree with you that this was a check situation. With so many callers the BB needed very little to call, and be correct in calling. He could have a suited 2 which still beat you. From the way you describe your games the BB doesn't really care too often whether his call is correct or not.
You probably would have had to call him down on the river, so I don't think you lost many bets here... unless a 9 was do on the river.
Just My Thoughts.
I think here it depends on the player. If he might make a checkraise as a play (w/say a pair and/or a flush draw) you have to call.
If he is a reasonable player he can't call w/very many hands on teh flop.
To say one has to bet here always is not correct. It as usual dpends on the people you are playing against.
I dont agree; what if BB has (eg) KQ? Or any two overcards?
You have to bet here. Don't be swayed by the results.
10 players, $5/10 holdem. 3 aggressive players, while the other ones are soft.
Preflop: UTG limps, fold, playerA limps, I limp w/66, fold to cutoff, who calls. Button raises. All call. (button is pretty aggr, so he could have big pair or Ace with a big kicker). 7 players.
Flop: 2 4 2 rainbow
Check to UTG, who bets. PlayerA folds. What would you do at this point? I raise figuring UTG has a 4 and I would like to protect my vulnerable hand. Only button, SB, and UTG calls. 4 players.
Turn: 4 (putting two hearts on board)
SB checks. UTG checks. What would you do at this point? I check, figuring UTG or SB is going for the check raise. It got checked through. 4 players.
River: 5 (no flush)
SB, UTG both checks. Would you bet here? I check behine them. Button bets. SB, UTG both calls. Would you call here? I call thinking button is only betting his Ace kicker.
Result: (scroll down to the bottom if you want to see it now)
Button turns over AQo.
SB has A5.
UTG has 88 and took down the pot.
You must bet the turn against so many opponents given the size of the pot. If it was just you and the flop bettor heads-up, you can perhaps exercise some caution and check for if he is drawing, he probably only has 6 to 8 outs. But checking against so many opponets leaves you at the mercy of so many bad river cards. If you get checkraised, you can probably muck as the other guy has to think that you may have a 4 and would be scared to checkraise without a 4 himself. At the 20-40 levels, some would checkraise even without a 4 if they know that you would never play a 4 in an early position but I am assuming that most players in this LL game don't exhibit such thinking.
As for your flop raise, it is clearly correct. Now, if the flop was 442, you have a tougher decision. Not only is it unlikely that the dude will be betting a deuce (which increases the chances that he is betting a 4), you still have to worry about players behind you and in particular the preflop raiser.
Jim Brier had a similar question in his quiz. You have 88 UTG and there is a preflop raise by the button. On a 663 rainbow flop, the big blind bets. His answer was that 88 should "raise". I understand his position. But to me, it's not that clear cut because I find it hard to imagine what the bb could be betting that doesn't beat my hand (if I recall, there were 4 players taking the flop). Plus, I still have two players behind me including the preflop raiser to contend with. If the flop had been 766 and bb bet, I certainly would endorse raising with 88 as now it's clear that bb could be betting a 7.
I would have bet the turn. How can you put UTG on a 4? It is hard to play a hand with a 4 in it from UTG.
Maybe he lays down,
Although the 4 dropped your chances considerably (it looks like UTG has a 4 or middle a pocket pair) I think you should still bet since your hand greatly increases in value when you get the over-cards to fold. Also, your buddy with 88 may fold since HE's fearful of that 4.
..err.. bet if you are confident the opponents will react naturally and you won't be making any mistakes after this (e.g. you can confidently fold to a raise).
BTW, a "pretty aggressive" player on the button is going to raise with LOTS of cheese, like 76s, after 4 callers. "Only" raising with big pairs and big Aces is "pretty tight" in my book.
I got several unlucky sessions that I lose faith in this stupid game (i'm speaking about texas hold'em)
Here's some bad beats: A-A, flop 3-J-J lost vs A-J ( this guy calling 3 cold bets before the flop)
A-K, flop K-4-7 OFFSUIT, lost vs K-4 OFFSUIT
big blind 4-6 of diamonds no raise. Flop: 4-K-6, turn 7, river 5: lost vs 8-9 OFFSUIT.
Try to convince me that low limit hold'em ($8-$16, not too low...) is not a game of luck!
Every hand has 7-8 players no matter how much money they have to put to enter the pot before the flop.
Premium hands become toilet paper with 7-8 players.
When I correctly fold 8-6 off, the flop comes 6-6-x and so on
How can I beat these games?
I have to abandon this game, I'm too weak to beat it.
Marco, sometimes you need the patience of Job to beat these games. In my first 100 hours of low limit hold'em I was stuck almost a grand. But eventually in turned around and I ended up winning over five grand for about 400 hours of play. I had a friend who ran bad in low limit games for over 1100 hours and finally quit poker. Believe it or not, these things happen in big games as well. There are an unending supply of idiots who play this game (thank goodness). I recommend you make sure you are playing in a very low limit game like $3-$6 or $4-$8 and nothing higher. Keep track of your hours and your results and write down hands where there is significant involvement on your part. Post as many as is reasonable. Unless, you are a real statistical deviate eventually it will turn around.
I know this sounds like blind faith but I don't know what else to tell you.
Keep at it - the games are beatable and they are not a game of luck over the long term.
Your bad beats are nothing unusual and happen all the time.
You said, "When I correctly fold 8-6 off, the flop comes 6-6-x". Something about this quote raises a flag, I am just not sure what that flag is. Maybe it says something about mental state or possible lack of experience.
Adjust your game correctly and you can win. Don't let the bad beats get you (you will have strings where you are down 50-100 big bets over a session).
Also, I made the same post you did about a little over a year ago. I laugh at it now.
AK in these games is a good hand, but not a premium one. Axs is often better. It is more important to hit the flop soundly than to have the best hand before the flop. In other words you need to adjust your game to beat these games, by a lot.
Reread HPFAP loose section, and consider other books that are tuned towards loose games, such as Lee Jones'.
sounds like your weakness is not being able to stomach the inevitable bad beats you will suffer in loose games, REGARDLESS OF LIMIT. Loose low limit games being unbeatable is a complete myth, unless the rake or drop is excessively high. In fact, these games are the easiest to beat. So someone called three cold with AJ, you were a collosal favorite, he just got extremely lucky. If you replay that situation a thousand times you will probably win 998 of them. Low limit holdem is the same game as high limit holdem, except that low limit games are generally looser with few, if any, good players. If you can't beat these games, give it up on moving up, because the games get more aggressive and have more skilled players. You are just one more person with the loose game blues, if you really do in fact play well, and you put in sufficient time, you will be a winner.
Dave in Cali
Follow this link to a great article in CardPlayer about this. Led Jones is considered one of the best LL holdem writers around.
I appreciated very much your answers and, it's the truth, reading your posts I've gotten a little more confidence in poker.
Thanks,Marco, for a post that a lot of us could have signed as our own. I have been playing seriously for about 6 mos, mostly 3/6 but moved up to 6/12 as I had made $2800 in about 200 hours which gave me a great deal of confidence. All of a sudden I went on a losing streak that sounds just like what you described. In less than 50 hours my winnings were cut in half. I couldn't buy a hand that would hold up.I was almost ready to give it up, thinking that my first 200 hours of winning were just luck. I backed down to the 3/6 game and after 9 straight losing sessions the end of my trauma finally came. I got a lot of help by reading articles like the one by Lee Jones and others that assured me that if I still played my tight, agressive game and refused to go on tilt, the pendalum would swing back my way. And, so it has. The next time it happens, and it will, I will be much more prepared for it as I realize it comes with the territory. Hope yours turns around soon. Stick with it!
I surely agree that good players lose occasionally....but I think the real keyword is occasionally. I don't think that someone who is playing well (in the traditonal tight/agressive sense of the word) should hit a losing streak of 1100 hours or 9 sessions straight or any of the other very extensive streaks that have been posted here. I think that a losing streak of 2 or 3 sessions seems reasonable but beyond that I think that the player should kind of step back from the game a little and reevaluate his play and strategy. Reread some books, play a lot on Turbo Texas Hold 'Em and just generally regroup. It seems that a lot of players that have posted here and gone on extended losing streaks have tried the reevaluation approach and it has worked well.
2000 hours per year. Here's how.
I played so tight it was like I wasn't even at the table. It wasn't playing poker. I was watching poker.
The biggest thing I had going for me, unlike some of the posters here on 2+2, is that words like "idiot" and "moron" were not part of my speech or thought process. I think many students of poker would fair far better in the lose games if they would not presume that they are entitled to win because they know how to read.
Tommy I want to thank you for this insight. By the way do you play online at all and do you find the same thing works? Regards, Dave
if you played so tight that you barely ever played a hand how did you prevent almost everyone from just folding once you entered the pot?
These were the losest games ever. Other games could only tie. I'm talking every hour every night. A curcuit of home games in a non legal-poker town. No rake or collection, which accounts for the 4BB thing.
Another thing which probably accounts for it is that in almost any game 6-12 or smaller virtually nobody is paying any attention to how you play. Or, if they are it doesn't affect how they play against you. For instance, if you have AA, they have KQ, and you made it three bets before the flop, they're paying you off if they flop a pair--just as they would a loose cannon.
This is the primary reason why I shake my head everytime I read a post where someone describes their 'table image'. I played in a game in Denver for a year and a half, and was widely regarded as the tightest player in the city. People used to make jokes about it, it was so obvious I was a nut hugger. Yet, they continually paid me off, either out of habit or because they just didn't care what I had. It didn't factor into their analysis. They'd 'know' I had a big hand when I raised early, and they'd still stubbornly call with QJo out of the SB.
Image is only relevant if your opponents change gears because of how they perceive you. If they don't-- and this most of them-- you can simply ignore it.
In a $4-$8 game, 4 big bets per hour is $32 per hour. You played 2000 hours per year so you won $64,000 per year playing $4-$8. You did this for 3 years so you won $192,000 playing $4-$8.
When are you writing your book on low limit hold'em?
The first reply to Marco's initial post was from you and you began with:
"Marco, sometimes you need the patience of Job to beat these games."
I strongly agree, and that was the point of my 4BB/hour post. In a super-lose game, a super-tight approach is a huge winner.
these specific questions, since your credibility is at stake in this forum:How often these games would go on, how many times a week? Are these games still going on today? Did you know these people, were they friends of yours, were they rich? For how many hours did you play in each session? Exactly, what hands did you play?(AA KK QQ AKs AQs, only?) Did you ever bluff? When did you play these games, what years.By Jim Brier calculation you made $192000, please, break it down for us. How much did you win in your best session? how little in your worst? Did you ever lose a session? If you lost a session in three years, how much did you lose? Even if you didn't keep records give us an estimate. How old were you at the time, and what poker experience did you have then? What occupation did you have at the time? How old were the other players? were they always the same ten players? or were they different players in every game? Did you play with ten players all the time, or were some games short handed? In the three years, did anyone notice that you were making a lot of moneys out of these games? Did anyone said anything?Thank you IF you take the time to answer.
Here's a 5-10 holdem hand I played at Paradise Poker... I thought that I played it well, but a friend who saw it thinks I'm a lucky maniac.
I'm dealt 98 spades in middle position. All fold to the player on my right. He's an awful, somewhat aggressive, very loose player (AP), who I've been torturing since I sat down at the table. Usually I won't play 98s after only one limper, but I want to play as many hands as I can against this guy, and figure we'll get at least one limper behind us. I call.
The loose player on the button (B) raises, and the tight player in the small blind (SB) calls. AP & I both call.
Flop 7d 5s 4c. I have two overcards, 3 to a flush, and a gutshot. I bet. B will take one off or raise, SB won't play without a real hand, and wouldn't be in the pot with a hand that could hit that board. AP will likely call one bet, but not two.
B calls, SB folds, AP calls
Turn Jh. Board is now 7d 5s 4c Jh. I have a double belly buster, and bet again, since if I check, and B bets, I'll have to call anyway. Unless I get raised, I'm going to consider hitting a 9 or 8 on the river as "outs".
B folds, and AP calls.
River Jd. Board is now 7d 5s 4c Jh Jd. AP bets. I know he's bluffing. He likes to bet on the end when he misses, and I think he'd have bet or checkraised the turn if he had a jack. I can't think of any legitimate hand that he can hold. I raise, he folds.
All my friend saw was me betting all the way with nothing, and taking down the pot. I felt I had legitimate draw, and bet it accordingly. There was no choice but to raise the river, since I was facing an obvious bluff, but can't call with a 9 high.
Your only questionable play IMO was the preflop call with a single limper with a multi-way hand.
The river raise bluff worked well, so who is to say it was a bad bet.
Wow... that was quick!
I agree that the preflop call was questionable, but when the player to my right starts to look like an ATM, I'll gamble just a little to get in the pot with him.
Flop and turn betting should be fairly routine for the splendid reasons you gave (although check-raising the flop is a real option so long as Button will bet only over-cards). So also is the raise on the end since you correctly deduce THIS player really can't have anything.
"Lucky Maniac"? Psssshhhaaaaw. You were neither lucky (you didn't make it) nor a maniac (all your bets had signifantly higher EV than calling/checking).
Your play was fairly straight forward and not that big a deal. Don't write home to Mom. To your credit, however, is your ability to confidently put to action your correct perception of this a-typical situation. THAT is a fairly big deal, something your friend cannot understand, do, or accept.
=== Holdem features numerous pots where nobody has much. Its important that YOU win more than your share of these pots.
"Holdem features numerous pots where nobody has much. Its important that YOU win more than your share of these pots. "
I think this is a very important point. Especially when you find yourself in a weak tight game.
"Don't write home to Mom". That's funny.... I was playing on Mom's account, so I had to get the hand history sent to her email address so she could forward it to me :)
The only unusual thing about this hand is that a weak tight (don't tell him I called him that) player was watching me. I chose to post it here because I was criticized for the way I played it, and felt it was worth a closer look.
Your raise on the river was proper. That sophisticated of a play though comes as a surprise from someone who played the hand like a maniac from the beginning till then.
At least you bet but had you not been up against weak oppistion it would have just cost you more.
The point of going up against the AP as much as possible is because you would be choosy and have better cards then him. I'd bet my shirt he had YOU beat all the way, so the logic there is silly. Not to mention you can't make that play with a call and the chance you get numerous callers behind you from mid position. The whole thing was wrong. I'd be much more frightened to have your friend at my table then you!
In the SB and get AKs...only two limpers and I raise...both call. flop comes 10,Q,5 rainbow. obviously it would be correct to bet out but would it ever be correct to check-raise?
Yes. Check-raise against assertive types who do NOT need big cards to limp and who are willing to abandon hands that are "obviously" beat, but who aren't clever enough to realize you must have hit that flop and are obviously check-raising.
Loose and moderately passive 4-8 kill game. I limp second in with Ac4c. All fold to the blinds who both call. 4 players and 4 SB in the pot.
Flop is great for my hand, Ah 9c 8c. Flopped top pair and the nut flush draw. SB checks, BB bets, UTG calls, I raise, SB folds, BB and UTG call.
Turn is the 4h. Now I have two pair and the nut flush draw to boot. BB bets and UTG calls, I raise again. BB reraises and UTG folds, I reraise again and BB calls.
River is the 6s. He bets and I call. He has As4s and we split the pot.
On the turn, I was in absolutely no danger of losing the pot to my opponent, as we had the exact same hand. But he had nine cards that would lose him the pot when I made the flush, so I was freerolling to beat him. There was danger here in that instead of the exact same two pair, my opponent may have had a higher two pair, or a set, in which case the only outs I had were clubs or full house cards. One reason I reraised him on the turn is that this opponent is extremely aggressive with both a decent hand and draws, so in my mind there was a decent chance I had the best hand, and even if I didn't, I still had 11 outs. Notice that since I have the Ac and 4c, no club can come that will pair the board, so all nine of my club outs are good. Plus, even if he has A9 or A8, I would have two more outs when the two remaining 4s show up. If he has a set, I still have two aces that can win if I make a full house. I had resigned that if I made the full house with the fours, I would not play it aggressively, because of the possibility of him having a set of eights or nines. If I made the full house with the aces, I would raise once if he bet, and if reraised, just call, because of the chance of him having A9 or A8.
So did I overplay my hand on the turn, despite the fact that I happened to be tied and freerolling for a flush?
Dave in Cali
A4 looked like the minimum hand he could have. Either you are free-rolling with 9 outs for half the pot or you are drawing for the entire pot with 9 outs.
Its a fair raise if he could realistically have 98 and a good hand if he could have 94 or AQ.
Even if your reraise on the turn could somehow be deemed incorrect, it sure ain't incorrect by much, and the benefits of being assertive and fearless can come back in other ways. And who knows, if you do need to improve to win, and do, maybe the other guy with go wacky for a while. Lots of players get extra irked when the drawing hand puts in an extra turn bet and then hits.
Let's say he makes it five bets on the turn. I don't mean with the A-4. I mean in general. If you could then be certain enough that your A-4 is no good that you could fold on the river for one bet after not improving, then your reraise on the turn is even better.
There are many situations in holdem where you have correct odds to call on the flop because there is only a SB to call rather then a large bet, but it is incorrect to call on the turn. In very close situations, I don't look at a draw as a 2 card draw, I look at it as a 1 card draw. I have to hit on the turn and then reevaluate if I don't. Generally flush and open ended straight draws offer you good enough odds to take on both streets.
If you are getting 3:1 to call the flop there must have been 2sb when the opponent bet. If you plan to go to the river it will cost 3sb to draw and you win the 2sb in the pot and the 3sb the opponent bets, or you are really getting 5:3 odds or 1.667:1 which is less than the 1.86:1 to make the flush.
Who said you should call?
This is an extreme example since you have the odds if there was anybody else in. The 1.86:1 odds is particularly relevant when you are considering betting or raising; which you should do if you expect at least 1.86 callers.
There was a documentary special about high stakes gambling on the Discovery Channel (I think) a year or two ago. In the show, there were two Vegas pros, or maybe just rich gamblers, who played a headsup winner take-all match for $100,000.
It was kind of done as an exhibition, but supposedly was a real match. Does anyone remember or know who the players were?
April 2001 Digest is provided by Two Plus Two Publishing and ConJelCo