I am a regular UB player and I'm really in the dumps over my game. I think of myself as a tight aggressive player, who occasionally takes a risk given position, limpers, etc. But lately I just seem to either go real card dead or take beats.. either my QQ v KK or my AA being called by 5h8h and filling either a flush, straight, 2 pair, you name it. Ready to quit ... but mostly real frustrated. My AQ, big pre flop raise, loses to A 4 caller with the A4 flop, my AK loses to AJ J turn. I don't know whether to bet hard or limp anymore.. totally confused. Any recommendations?
If you want to play poker for the long haul, the only thing you can do when running bad is to suck it up and minimize your losses. It will happen to everyone eventually if you play long enough and it can last for days, weeks, or even months.
It's easy to play good when you are running good, but almost impossible when you are running bad. Poker is 99% luck in the short run and 99% skill in the long run.
hi there sophiea, you have the Fortune (or misfortune) to be my first post on the site after lurking about for a couple weeks.
My response would be based on a couple of things, are you talking about tournament play, sit and gos or cash games? NL or Limit?
For the sake of my post, i'll go with tournament play (since that's all i really do anymore).
If you've had some success playing tourneys and being ultra-tight with your starting hand requirements, try moving to some lower buy in tourneys and experiment a bit with your game... i've gone into some cheap MTTs and really gone crazy experimenting.
"what would happen if I play as many hands as I can, regardless of what they are if I can get in relatively cheap"
"what happens if I call someone's big raise with rags"
"what happens if I play every pocket pair like I play AA"
"what happens if I play every suited connectors I get dealt"
Now these types of strategies probably will not get you into the final table, but what happened for me was that in tinkering with some ideas like that it helps you see the value in hands other than the obvious ones like AA, KK, AK. I'll emphasize it again, this won't get your game on track, but I think it helps instill a bit of creativity into your game which I think is a critical factor for success.
Read, watch & listen to what other players are saying & doing. There are so many great tips on this site alone that should help inspire your game. Find some players of varying styles to just watch during tournaments and really pay attention to the action.
And maybe finally, take a good honest look at your own game. Is it too predictable? Are you not changing gears enough? Is it a better fit for limit?
Didn't mean to ramble, and maybe the point of my blathering here is to look for something that inspires you to take it to the next level.
When I'm running bad I like to take a day off and spend it doing something completely differant than poker. I played 8 s&g's on Wed and lost all 8 going all in with the best of it. Just sit back relax and remember that the reason you have the most beats put on you is because your going in winning the most often. Poker is one long secision. Do not try to break it down into days.
g.L. and f beanie
holy crap I can't spell
Hey there SOPHIEA... you and me play quite of bit of poker together in Multi tourneys... I would say that your game is too tight. You mentioned that you are a little tight, but it shows at the table.. loosen it up sometimes and see how it goes.
I have played with you quite a bit and your game seems very solid to me. So IMO, you should evaluate your long term results. If youve been a consistent winner over time then you should be able to dismiss this short term failure as running bad which is exactly what i figure it to be....but if you are a long term loser or around even then maybe you should question your game. You have to come into each session with a clear mind, if you are confused and doubt your play you will lose and make bad plays. Dont know if this helps any just my opinion.......P
mrp.. thanks for the response. We do play against each other a lot and think we play a similar style. So, my question is, do you often or ever, play J3 or T6 suited or not, in a late position with a raise? This question is to try to understand how to "loosen" up my normally tight game. You know I either have AK, AQ, AA KK QQ or some other pocket pair.. hardly even TJ suited,,, so is that too tight- especially early in tourney, so is that too tight?
Hey Walrus, EE I think. I appreciate your posts because I know you as a brash, bold player. But I hardly ever see you in hands with crap. So, how do you recommend I loosen up? Bluff more in position? Call with random cards to see a flop? Just trying to figure out how to improve my game. I'd appreciate your insight
OK Walrus, just read your post about H0 vs Soccer Mom 2 in Aruba final. H0 answers every raise and all in with "junk" and, of course, gets filled and outs better, although not premium, hands. You, rightly I think, criticize his play, but of course, he wins. So is this what you mean by "loosening up" and let the cards fall as they might or is it just the power of H0s big stack that allows him to risk an all in loss and still stay alive? Me, I'm the guy with the KJ vs H0's K8 when the 88 shows up. But, if I played the K8, the board would be blanks and the J holds up.. so again, confused and looking for some advice.. or does it boil down to the short term luck factor?
Sophiea (fellow Michigander),
I really like what j2the3rd said. I sort of relate it to golf when my game begins to go into the tank for a while. Get some new swing thoughts, relax. If you are having trouble getting through the mine field of a MTT (i.e. your long game), go work on your short game (i.e. sit 'n' go's). Try to get some confidence back. Taking a little break to clear your head works good too. When you comeback, set some goals and experiment with your game (change your grip/style of play). Before you know it you will be back. Badbeats/Badbounces are part of the game. Even the very best experience this. This game can sometimes be everybit as frustrating as golf. But I am still addicted to both.
sophiea... early in a tourney my feeling is that you should really loosen up your starting hands. Especially if you can see a flop for cheap.
At any given table, you have to assume there's a good % of people playing the same starting hands as you (AA, KK, QQ, AK, etc). Early in a tourney is the perfect time to play 56s or 78s. On a flop like 55A the person holding AQ is most likely going to feel very confident that they are holding the best hand and will be willing to put a lot of their chips on the line thinking you couldn't possibly be holding an 5.
Playing this way I think gives you a huge advantage over the Ace-only players. Will it work all the time? No. But early on it gives you some great opportunities to increase your stack.
I disagree about anyone's luck, esp H0's. Before he won Aruba last night, I watched him bust out 3rd overall in the afternoon $100. I've seen him as one of the first few out in SO many tournaments. The thing so many people complain about in him is that he doesn't play fundamental poker. He refuses to "grind it out" like you or I always try to do, and he's figured out a style of faster play that works.
So many of us are so afraid to be sucked out on or to suck out on someone else, because we just don't think that's what is supposed to happen in poker. But it does happen, so shouldn't we try to use it to our advantage, rather than just lamenting it every night after it knocks us out of a tourney?
So to answer your question, I don't think it's about short term luck really in the situations we're talking about here. I think it's about making short term decisions that in the long term lead to the opportunity to make more money in tournaments, by creating a situation where you either a) have a big stack or b) are out. If you are a player capable of using a big stack to propell yourself to first prize, and are confident in your ability to do so, then to me it makes sense, although I still have no idea about "when." I guess that's why the number of times I've come in first in a big multi is still in single digits :)
just tried to loosen up in a sng. worked enough to get some chips and place in the $. Made 1 mistake, bb 95 raised 1 bet by button (JJ) folded, flop 55.. I could've afforded the 1 bet call and should have to see the flop. I suppose that is what "loosening up" is about. Seeing flops when it doesn't cost a ton and in "position" (although bb isn't good position, you do already have some $ in the pot).. Anyway, thanks for the responses. And, I'm playing under a new name so I'll let you all know how it goes with this "new" look.
I think that early in tourneys is the time to play tight.....i am not the type to try to build a monster stack early. If i do thats nice, but you cant win a tournament in the first hour. when the blinds get higher and someone has a deep stack and makes a cheap raise then i may see a flop in posistion with a suited connector or any other deceptive hand that they wouldnt ever put me on due to my tight play in the first hour....sometimes these hands can win huge pots for you. To answer your question i dont think i would ever play J 3 but maybe 10 6 suited in that situation you mentioned before because that hand can make a straight and a flush although neither of them being the nut straight or flush....if you play those types of hands too much IMO you are playing with fire but there are certain times when they can be profitable negraneu likes to play hands like 7 4 suited UTG.....or in any posistion so it can work if you possess the insane reading ability that he does......but i dont have the Xray glasses to see through everyones cards as he does....so i stick with my tight play. This is just my opinion not saying this is the only way to play.....P
I think anything I posted about, as well as any other advice needs to be experimented with so that it ultimately fits your personality and used appropriately.
If you could had a nice stack in front of you and faced with a 1bet, i make that call every time just to see the flop.
My greatest hand ever played involved making the same type of call with 25 in middle position and a flop of 22K coming up. After a raise and re-raise the only person involved was the local maniac player. The turn brought another 2 giving me quads to his 2s full of K's.
This will come along once in a blue moon, but with the right stack and right timing it can happen.
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