Responding to a few comments

I would like to address a few questions that were left on my comment page.  First, the seat I won was in a $300 tournament that netted somewhere between 200-300 people.  Top five people received a seat.  Ironically enough, I told my roommate last week that I felt this tournament was particularly dumb to play because the field was strong (mostly weekday grinders) and placing 5th out of 250ish was quite difficult.  So, of course, I decided this week that I would try it out anyway because I was low on options.  When playing a sattelite like this one, you are forced to do some things that you would never do in a real tournament.  In particular, there is a theory called ICM (independent chip modeling) that explains how tight or loose you should play in any given spot remembering that you don’t have to come in first to win a seat.  Therefore, when we were down to the final table, I folded some really big hands preflop (QQ, JJ) because someone with more chips than me was shoving all in every hand.

As far as luck vs. skill is concerned, if you are a professional player, you are forced to play the odds instead of going with a gut feeling.  I will admit that I have a soft spot for a few hands (4d8d, 10dJd) and I try to play them whenever possible.  But, for the most part, I play my position and my image more than my cards.  I had a friend say that my blog comes off as if I never get my money as a dog.  That is incorrect, there are plenty of times that I do get my money in bad.  But I do so with the odds in mind.   Let me give you an example:

In the Venetian $500 tournament that I went deep in a few weeks ago, I was midway through the day when I looked down at Kd7d in mid position.  I opened the pot and was called by the player to my left.  Everyone else folded and we saw a flop that included Q106 with two diamonds.  Just to recap my image, I had run my stack up at the table and I was most likely labeled as the internet kid (read: aggressive and loose).  I cbet a small amount, so that if I was raised, I’d have enough fold equity to shove.  In non-poker speak, I raised small so that if raised, I could go all in and it would still be a lot for the other player to call.    As luck would have it, the player raised my bet and I took some time before I shoved.  The player snap called with qj off and I was left drawing to a diamond or a king.  Thing is, in spots like this, I’m usually not getting snap called by qj.  In fact, most of the time, the player is a live donk and immediately puts me on a big hand and folds his top pair, lousy kicker.  QJ isn’t really beating much besides a semi-bluff (what I had) but even then doesn’t have great equity.  A diamond rolled right off on the turn and scooped a huge pot to take the chip lead at my table and probably a top ten stack in the tournament.  Now, that is a brief description of the hand – I could go into a lot more depth into why I did what I did but I think I got the point across.  Sometimes, you take calculated risks without the best hand because you think your opponent will fold more often than not.  I’m not just doing the odds of the cards, I’m also taking into account the odds of a fold vs. a call.  Anyway, hope that clears some of that up.  Gonna grind tonight – we’ll see what happens…

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1 comment so far

  1. Uncle Jeff on

    Happy Birthday! Hope you have great day. Go out and have some fun.


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