Monday, November 29, 2010

Totally NOTHING to report

Really. In a strange way, I found myself AVOIDING opportunities to play poker this weekend and instead work on minor house remodeling/decorating projects. And hacking my Wii. And playing XBOX. and staring. Which brings me to the thought that I am rebelling against poker since I am to miss the WPBT extravaganza in Vegas for the first time in 5 years. So much booze. So many straddles.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


Why do I like tournament poker better than cash games? It's just really hard with 40-50 BB to get away from a set regardless of the board. And if you have top-set second nuts, you are not going to escape from the unlikely change that someone called a 4x raise with 2d4d.

Still, no one to blame but yourself. Move in with top-set and lose... It happens, move on. At least it wasn't Kings into Aces pre-flop!

Friday, November 05, 2010

Putting it all together

A short while back, I made the affirmation that I was going to play more hands. I did this because of what I know of game theory and war strategy. The more dangerous you are, the more confrontations you can avoid. Its a simple postulate, but a psychological truth.

But it dawns on me this morning that me implementation strategy is flawed. Playing more hands may increase opportunity (and volatility), but the real way to strike fear into your opponents is to be dangerous. This is OFTEN misquoted and misinterpreted by players and people to mean aggression. And there is a great deal of truth to that. But that is more of a tactical view. What you really want to do is constantly create uncomfortable situations for your opponents.

You see this often on TV poker and you can read a great book length article on it in doubleas book "pressure poker". You find situations where you can apply pressure to your opponent. But what was missing from this (and also missing from the book) is the psychology behind it. Which is tied very closely to timing and its success or failure. The WSOP main event illustrates this very well. "When your opponent seems to want to play a small pot, pressure hit with a big bet. When your opponent wants to play a big pot, frustrate him with a fold." Obviously we see the first part of that statement in aggression at the table, but not enough credit (on TV certainly) is given to the second half. Denying your opponent the opportunity to set the pot size is in my opinion the single biggest asset next to your cards themselves.

How does Annette play an entire SnG or MTT without looking at her cards? This is how. Creating uncomfortable situation and obviously not disclosing the fact that she is playing blind.