We all know that Ivey, Gavin Smith, The Grinder, Gus, and Negraneau have had tremdendous success playing a loose aggressive style. I've always been a little more solid but have dabbled in opening up my game. I read a couple of poker articles today about Ivey and Smith and decided to play a LAG tonight in one tournament. I signed up for the 6:40 UB $100 buy-in.
LAG is a total blast. I'm playing 35% of my hands. Opening up for 2-1/2 raises instead of bigger ones. Playing flops, chopping away at pots.
I'll try to let you know some of my thoughts on the process later.
People really HATE you when you play this way.
Currently 12 left, I've been a huge chip leader for a long time. Just lost a huge pot to get back down to a normal chip lead - 10% more than 2nd. Not sure how to switch gears if I make FT, but I'll report back.
Yeah I've tried it in basically all the double shootouts I've played with quite a bit of success (and 9th place bustouts). I haven't been able to successfully apply it to bigger tournaments when the table remains 9-10 handed throughout, but it certainly is fun and profitable if executed properly. Playing lower limit mtts, I of course can't take the LAG style to the next level, because some people just won't fold, so I am interested to see how this will work out for you, especially after reading many of your posts in which you seem to promote a very solid strategy.
I imagine playing LAG (if nothing else) will improve your big stack play as well as your cash game play, assuming you are now very active in early levels.
LAG = the pit-falls of complex post flop situations (bottom two pair vs a slightly aggressive mid sized stack? how to maximize without being killed if he did nail his hand, vs just top pair top kicker?)... but an added bonus: practice at post flop play (due to sheer quantity of it). more power too you, and gl
Well, the wrapup report could be a little better. I finished 6th or 7th. I wasn't able to continue the LAG approach at the FT because I picked up QQ and JJ only to get called and watch the flop bring AK both times.
One thing I learned about the LAG approach is the ability to avoid confrontation. I was playing and winning so many easy pots that I didn't really need to take much heat. Folding to any resistance seems to come pretty easy if you just focus on how many easy pots you win.
I made one big mistake with about 15 people left. I had been extremely active - I think I played 11 hands straight at one point. I had played so many hands that I kind of lost control and made a dumb play. Seat 2 limped and the button raised the pot to about 8k. I had AQ in the SB and immediately just pushed in because both seat 2 and the button had about 20k in chips. At this point, I had a 30k chip lead with 70k total. There was absolutely no reason for me to choose to play a pot of 20k with a hand as weak as AQ.
I think I learned a lot by the experiment and as Jeff pointed out, you really have to know when to change gears. At the FT, I scaled back my aggressiveness to only 2 hands every orbit. I started getting lots of playback which would have been fine had I occasionally picked up a good hand that held. After my QQ and JJ hands, I got down to 35k and decided to tighten up. After letting everyone shift their focus to other players, I decided to hit the LAG again at the 30k mark. Within just a couple of orbits I was back to 50k. But, then people got tired of me again and started going over the top a lot.
I was really surprised by the perception that people form about you. Everyone assumed I was the biggest donk in the world because I wasn't playing by the book.
I built a devastating chip lead, and failed to devastate because of the AQ pot. You get so much action on your hands and when you hit a funky hand, it's an easy double up.
Mix it up, baby....