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View Full Version : A brave new world for poker pros? Yeah right.


natedogg
05-26-2004, 10:49 PM
All this garbage about a new poker world that the pros can't handle.

What a joke. I've seen a lot of noise on RGP and other places about how the new world of poker has passed by the pros. This is often based on one half-assed comment
by a well-known self-congratulatory jackass who stayed in form during an exit interview.

Now there's no doubt the known pros all think very highly of themselves. I'm reminded of a WSOP a few years ago where Annie Duke and Daniel Negreanu were commentating the final table and they kept categorizing each play as "Super Satellite" plays or "pro plays". As far as I could tell, this was pretty much based on whether or not the player making the play was famous or not. The condescension was so thick you could cut it with a knife.

Anyway, there's no doubt that although many pros are a step beyond mere mortals, many are also just part of the subset of really great players who aren't running bad that year.

What this year's World Series and the success of internet poker players tells us is NOT that the game has changed radically and the pros are too dumb to realize it. No, it tells that the media coverage of the pros, and even many pros themselves but certainly not all, had no freaking idea how many excellent players are out there who don't write articles for cardplayer magazine.

These same pundits who think that poker has transformed because of internet players are often the same buffoons who have spent the last year posting over and over about what a stupid lucky fish Chris Moneymaker is.

natedogg

Michael Davis
05-27-2004, 12:32 AM
I second. The worship of the so-called "professional" players is disgusting.

There are a whole lot of remarkably good players grinding it out in upper limit ring games. A few of these guys are probably no names still in the WSOP right now. People will undoubtedly bemoan their good fortunes in getting so lucky to make it this far...

-Michael

shaniac
05-27-2004, 12:55 AM
Ditto.

I'd say it's a reasonable bet that 90% or more of the "unknowns" left in the field are known to someone for their ability to play consistently +EV, winning poker.

Go Ben Johnson!

Shane

jayadd
05-27-2004, 01:00 AM
like one of our own GREG.....

benfranklin
05-27-2004, 01:52 AM
[ QUOTE ]
There are a whole lot of remarkably good players grinding it out in upper limit ring games.

[/ QUOTE ]

A quote from a Negreanu article sometime back may be coming back to haunt him:

[ QUOTE ]
I've said all along that the "real" players are in the side games. The true greats are players you'll rarely hear of, and for the most part, that's exactly how they prefer it. -- Daniel Negreanu

[/ QUOTE ]

In their "exit interviews", Negreanu and Duke both said essentially the same thing, that they were out because they ran a bunch of bluffs that didn't work. They strongly implied that the bluffs didn't work because the bluffers were very sophisticated and the bluffees were too ignorant to be bluffed. Another explanation could be that the bluffs didn't work because the "pros" were running the same old tired bluffs they have been using for years, and the new kids on the block were not impressed, having seen all this crap on TV. The bluffees couldn't be reached for comment, because they were still at the table, playing poker.

Negreanu himself wrote an article not long ago about the powerful new teaching tool of taping and watching WSOP and WPT shows on TV, and studying them to learn both general strategy and the tactics and tells of specific players you might face in the future. Another wise observation come back to bite him on the butt??

DcifrThs
05-27-2004, 03:32 AM
Poker isn't like other "professional" sports or games.

the mark of greatness isn't some ordinal ranking or contract dollars or demand for your attention...the mark of greatness is your OWN PERSONAL success.

the media obviously takes what it can get, what is easily sensationalized and can be spoon fed to an "i don't know any better" public.

these concepts lead one to conclude that despite the growth in interest and understanding of poker (as in, i understand what a bluff is), people are for the most part ignorant of what greatness is.

very few players are good let a lone great. danny was right and its a shame that those unknown pros had to even be outted...theyd be happier nobody even knowing they don't know them (at least i would presume so but my presumptions are oftentimes wrong lol- i'm sure some crave fame but most i'd say are likely to be introverts etc. etc.)

-Barron

PokerBabe(aka)
05-27-2004, 10:27 AM
No, it tells that the media coverage of the pros, and even many pros themselves but certainly not all, had no freaking idea how many excellent players are out there who don't write articles for cardplayer magazine.

Natedogg.....Estimates of the success rate of professional poker players run from 1/2 of 1% to 1%. The fact is that MOST people who try to play professionally FAIL. Even in my own little microcosm of the Vegas dayshift, I have seen 4 or 5 very good players bust out over the last 18 months. These LONG time EXPERIENCED players used to beat the game and no longer found that they could. Did they suddenly "forget" how to play? Surely not. What happened is that they could not beat the "newer contingent" of player who is difficult to read. Because the "newer contingent" I am describing makes so many errors (both before and after the flop, it often requires the pros to pay off more at the river and to put more bets in on other streets. Obviously, this can impact short term results and increase variance until the pros can master the "learning curve" required to play in the "new world".
Additionally, bankroll drawdowns have created problems for previously winning players who can't overcome the variance they are experiencing. Remember, some people actually live off their poker income, so they don't have other sources to fall back on.


Three of my closest friends who are LONG TIME winning pros at 30-60 and higher have had their worst months EVER in the last 18 months. Their drawdrowns are so off the chart that it's not even close to being some lower limit average which can be explained by "normal fluctuations". Just a coincidence you say? No, I think not.

Your comment that there are excellent players who don't write for magazines is certainly correct, but I think you GREATLY overestimate how good these players are and how many of them are out there. Many people forget that the short term luck factor in tournaments is tremendous. You cannot judge a player by one tournament. Also, as you know, live action games play quite diffently than tournaments. Time will surely tell who can succeed, but my money is on the "old line" pros like Daniel and Annie. These are 2 of the best players in the world, and they will crucify these new guys who think they can outplay everyone.

From my experience and that of Vegas pros I know and highly respect, I can tell you that there are players coming into the game who are inexperienced and who are destined to fail. They simply make too many errors, and hyperaggression won't compensate for those errors in the long run.

Oh yes,... like Daniel and Annie say, it's true that you can't bluff a bad player.


LGPG,

Babe /images/graemlins/heart.gif

Easy E
05-27-2004, 10:45 AM
Oh yes,... like Daniel and Annie say, it's true that you can't bluff a bad player.

Any chance that some of those "bad player calls" were actually good reads by the rookies?

Like you, Babe, I'll wait and see how things flesh out over a year or so before we designate anyone the "new" pro wave.....

However, as natedogg pointed out, I think that some of the well-known B&M pros are crying a little too loudly about "bad players" when their own (reported) play could use some examination.

One thing everyone forgets- what were people saying about Annie, Daniel, Phil (H and L), Gus, etc when they first hit the poker consciousness? Any possibility that some new quality players are starting to come through?

Everyone should quit whining about the "bad players" and focus on playing the poker needed to BEAT the new wave...

turnipmonster
05-27-2004, 10:53 AM
[ QUOTE ]
What happened is that they could not beat the "newer contingent" of player who is difficult to read. Because the "newer contingent" I am describing makes so many errors (both before and after the flop, it often requires the pros to pay off more at the river and to put more bets in on other streets.

[/ QUOTE ]

while it is true that terrible players are hard to read, very good players are hard to read also. IMO, that's what makes them "very good" as opposed to "ABC".

the internet is a huge factor in this. joe the internet pro plays more hands in a month than most B&M pros get in a year. also, limit games on the net (as a general rule) have a much larger variance and require a much much bigger bankroll to play successfully.

there's a lot to be said for a pro avoiding a high variance game they can't afford to play.

--turnipmonster

eastbay
05-27-2004, 10:58 AM
[ QUOTE ]

What happened is that they could not beat the "newer contingent" of player who is difficult to read. Because the "newer contingent" I am describing makes so many errors

[/ QUOTE ]

This sounds like yet another attempt at the old fallacy: "I can't beat these damn low limit fish who suck out on me too much."

Not to mention that people busting out shows that they don't understand how to manage their bankroll. And if that's the case, are they really that great in the first place?

eastbay

mrbaseball
05-27-2004, 11:08 AM
[ QUOTE ]
are they really that great in the first place

[/ QUOTE ]

If the "good" players can't beat the "bad" players one has to wonder just how good the good players are and just how bad the bad players are? If you can't adjust to new or different conditions and styles odds are you aint so good to begin with.

People are playing 100's of thousands of hands on the internet and gaining years and years of experience in months. This gives many internet "rookies" far more experience than grizzled B&M veterans. It's a different world now and people have to adapt or whither and die.

Kurn, son of Mogh
05-27-2004, 11:31 AM
A random musing as to what I view as the fundamental conflict between the "old school" and the "newbies" particularly with respect to NLHE tournaments.

If you play NLHE exclusively in the tournament format, be they multis or SNGs, what you are trying to accomplish is to maximize your ROI based upon the constraints of a fixed risk level (buy-in) vs. a fixed pize structure. To accomplish this you formulate a strategy for moving your game pieces (chips) to accumulate more of your opponents' game pieces. This is the background of the online tournament player; the environment in which they learned the game.

Now, the pro players have learned most of their big bet poker from playing cash games that have no fixed risk and no fixed return. Each individual hand represents real monetary risk and return. This is the environment from which the pros have developed their strategy.

Is there an understanding out there that these two environments may well represent two radically different optimal strategies?

Why do pros bluff more? Perhaps because when that $3,000 that you have to put in to call the bet *really is* an additional $3,000 out of your pocket, the propensity to call may indeed be reduced? That is not the reality in a tournament.

I guess my point here is that it's the pros who have to adapt in tournament poker because the online crowd may actually be playing a different game. The pros learned their strategy by pushing real money to the middle of the table. The online folks learned their strategy by paying an entry fee and playing a board game. The apples and oranges difference between how the pros and online folks treat chips may be the biggest factor of all.

Clarkmeister
05-27-2004, 11:38 AM
Robin,

A really good player knows how to play in any game condition. The fact of the matter is that the games are much easier to beat now than they were even 2 years ago. I really don't think its possible to argue otherwise. Did your friends forget how to play? Nah, they just never knew *how* to play in any type of game other than a tight passive one.

So they have trouble beating the real good games because of this. And when the games are bad, they run into new players (attracted by the preponderance of good games) who are much better than they are. They could do well with little variance as the best or 2nd best player in a bad game. That was the staple of many Vegas pros. They literally beat up on the same 20 or so people day in day out for years. Now when the games are bad, they are the 4th best at the table, and a significant problem arises.

Clarkmeister
05-27-2004, 11:45 AM
"The apples and oranges difference between how the pros and online folks treat chips may be the biggest factor of all. "

I don't think this is it. Its only recently that there were that many cash NL games to play at all. Its not like they were all over the place.

Frankly, the difference is that many of the internet players are better, and the ones who aren't are quickly catching up. The only thing they lack is the experience of live play. The key thing to remember is that many of these internet players have played more NL tourney hands, and more entered more events in the last two years, than guys like Phil have played in their entire lifetimes . The learning curve has been drastically changed, and new players can catch up to, and even pass the older players very very quickly.

This holds true for limit also. Look at Astroglide as one example of many around here. Granted, he's been playing for more than 2 years, but in the last two years, I'd guess he's played more hands than someone like Roy Cooke has played in his entire life. Anyone who doesn't think that's significant is kidding themselves.

nolanfan34
05-27-2004, 11:54 AM
Kurn and Clarknasty,

Great posts.

I think the point of how pros play tournaments vs. internet pros is a great observation. Internet players don't look at chips as being real money, only "game pieces" like Kurn said. A stone cold bluff is not as hard to call for an internet player I think, because they've likely played tons of MTT's where they've lost chips, been shortstacked, and doubled up over and over all in the course of an hour. I just think that creates a different mindset.

I know the discussion has been had many times in these forums, but what really makes someone a professional anyway? Well, the pros are clearly successful players who choose to make this their living. But there are plenty of players in a tournament of this size who likely COULD make a living playing poker, but choose not to for whatever reason. That makes poker unique I believe, and I really think it's something that the pros from the comments I've seen are still underestimating.

It will be interesting to see how the internet continues to change the game over the next few years. And the game WILL continue to change - whether the old-school pros adapt to it or not.

Al_Capone_Junior
05-27-2004, 12:10 PM
Well, the ring games have gotten BETTER not worse. It's the tournaments that have gotten harder to beat. Any pro however, who cannot beat limit ring games right now, hasn't remembered enough about what it was like playing 3-6 in the middle of the night on a weekend in vegas, or any day in any casino in California. Now I am very happy to have stayed at 3-6 and 4-8 all those years, playing against loose, unreadable opponents, even tho I could have undoubtedly beaten higher limit, tougher games. The 10-20 games now are often like 3-6 used to be, loose and with unreadable players. Fine with me, I used to beat 3-6 very nicely, for more than a big bet per hour, even with the high drops in California. I can now beat tougher games, but I have the loose game experience to fall back on now that the game has changed.

I don't like what the massive influx is doing to the tournament scene. It's made the variance go WAY up. But what the heh, I'll pick and choose my tournaments according to my taste, and play ring games the rest of the time.

al

Al_Capone_Junior
05-27-2004, 12:29 PM
[ QUOTE ]
People are playing 100's of thousands of hands on the internet and gaining years and years of experience in months. This gives many internet "rookies" far more experience than grizzled B&M veterans.

[/ QUOTE ]

They may gain experience in playing, but they'll still be at a huge disadvantage to someone who is a good reader of people and plays live all the time. NOT being able to read players is by far the biggest downside to online play. The inexperienced players are very much protected by the internet. Set them in a live game and watch their meager win rates go way down when calculated hand for hand.

That said, I have no doubt that hand for hand I make more playing live than I do on the internet, despite the higher rakes and tips.

al

Kurn, son of Mogh
05-27-2004, 12:44 PM
Excellent point. I agree.

CrackerZack
05-27-2004, 01:17 PM
[ QUOTE ]
It's the tournaments that have gotten harder to beat.

[/ QUOTE ]

This is misleading IMO. I'll certainly agree it is much harder to win a tourney with a very large field, but its much easier to money in a tourney with a much larger field. When some of the better 2+2 tourney players are sitting in the party 1/4 mil guarantee, its not odd to see 50% or more make the money on any given week. I remember watching a couple of weeks where 4 of 5 monied back to back. Given you need to finish high to make a real big score, but if you can money rather consistently, it takes a lot of the variance from tournament pros allowing the big scores to really be big scores and not be necessary to sustain month or year long dry spells.

Zack

CrackerZack
05-27-2004, 01:22 PM
I can't describe how true this is. It really is amazing. I started out as only a live player playing hold 'em and occassionally 7-stud at Mohegan Sun when I could get up there. I knew of internet poker but didn't really want to put any real money out in cyberspace, etc etc so didn't play. Eventually 2+2er MaxPower said he'd send me a few bucks on Party and I could give him the cash. Easy, no need to create Neteller accounts or involve my checking account, away I went. I played for a couple of months online before I got back out to play a live game and it was shocking. It was like someone took the blinders off. I had only played like 5k hands online, maybe less, but I had been in so many common situation so many times through those that the game seemed to be in slow motion. Not due to the number of hands being dealt, just that the minute the flop hit the table, I almost always had a complete plan for the hand. I don't believe this is something that can be learned from books, just loads of experience. You can know how the books say to play situations, but until you're faced with them, its hard to really identify the book stuff from the real game. Experience ties this together, and getting experience on the internet is obscenely easy and quick. anyway, just my 2 cents.

Zack

Raiser
05-27-2004, 02:42 PM
[ QUOTE ]
The bluffees couldn't be reached for comment, because they were still at the table, playing poker.


[/ QUOTE ]

This line is great. Nice work.

MRBAA
05-27-2004, 03:16 PM
Look at just about any pro sport before big money and publicitity got involved. The level of play was much lower in large part because the pool of athletes was much lower.

Think of pro hoops in the 20s-50s -- most of the players were from NY and a few other urban areas and black players generally were relegated to their own leagues. As the money and popularity grew, the talent pool expanded to the point where good athletes are now taking up basketball all over the world. And quality coaching and b-ball knowledge is widely available as never before.

The same thing is happening in poker -- loads of new players are pouring in and better teaching/learning is available. This is good for the game overall, but it means the best of these new players are moving up to limits like 20-40 and higher after beating low limits. Most won't be winners, but may STILL BE BETTER THAN THE OLD WINNERS. And the new winners are likely to be MUCH BETTER than all but the best from the past.

Sort of like George Mikan and the old Lakers trying to take on Shaq and the new. Mikan might make an NBA team today, most of his teammates probably couldn't even start at a major college.

tolbiny
05-27-2004, 03:56 PM
the difference between poker and basketball is that in poiler its like they expand the legue every time someone wants to play. You really arent competing against the pros in the same way, so there should be enough room for all the old pros plus the new ones with the larger pool of money involved. If you were a pro and now you cannont beat the game the only possibility is that your game needs adjusting- we know this because there are still people out there makeing a living playing poker.

scrub
05-27-2004, 05:27 PM
[ QUOTE ]
I played for a couple of months online before I got back out to play a live game and it was shocking. It was like someone took the blinders off.

[/ QUOTE ]

Hearty agreement.

The ability to play bulk hands is an insane learning tool.

On the other hand, there are things that live poker gives you too.

I was talking with poster, nascent pro, and all around classy guy JoeMatty at the Borgata this week about how playing online can keep me from plugging leaks in my game. When I'm multitablng 5/10 short games, I rarely have time to sit and mull over every mistake I make. I come back and pick up some of them, but some leaks just slide off since I have another hand to get involved with so quickly.

I played about 45 hours of live 10/20 last week, and my game improved by light years. Having 30 minutes to sit around and mull over every bet I could have had if I had played optimally was a HUGE learning tool. It was like I was looking at my game with a microscope instead of my glasses.

The chance to watch the habits of stronger players while I was playing was also a great experience. When I'm online, I don't let myself get "tutored" enough by the strongest players I play with.

Anyway, for what it's worth I think that a combination of the two experineces is the best way for me to improve. Plus, splashing chips around is fun.

scrub

Al_Capone_Junior
05-27-2004, 06:07 PM
[ QUOTE ]
I was talking with poster, nascent pro, and all around classy guy JoeMatty at the Borgata this week about how playing online can keep me from plugging leaks in my game. When I'm multitablng 5/10 short games, I rarely have time to sit and mull over every mistake I make. I come back and pick up some of them, but some leaks just slide off since I have another hand to get involved with so quickly.

I played about 45 hours of live 10/20 last week, and my game improved by light years. Having 30 minutes to sit around and mull over every bet I could have had if I had played optimally was a HUGE learning tool. It was like I was looking at my game with a microscope instead of my glasses.


[/ QUOTE ]

Hellew!

Thank you for this observation!

al

B-Man
05-27-2004, 07:02 PM
NM

bernie
05-27-2004, 09:06 PM
It may be covered already, but here goes.

At my old room I used to watch/hear overlimit guys complain when they sat in a LL game how they couldnt beat LL games because of the players. They needed more 'predictable' players. So that became their texture of choice. Some learned how to play it rather well. Well enough to beat their normal opponents. One trick ponies.

But now comes the poker boom. With it comes more money/players able to blow chips at theses higher limit players who either forgot how to beat the typical LL texture or never could anyways. They dont know how to adjust so they blame it on the players instead of looking at their own games.

It's not necesarily better players coming in. Yeah, that happens, but most players i've seen just plain suck. But with those types of players/textures comes higher variance game. Which means you may need a roll higher than 300BB. Which some higher limit guys aren't used to. So again, well ingrained in their one style, it couldnt be their fault, they'll say again. The new guys just dont know how to play.

I dont understand either how more players coming in, more games to choose from, more loose money makes tougher games overall. For every one decent player coming in, there are countless donators.

I also wonder if many of the players who complain about this aren't older guys who like sitting in their little rock garden. Boy, now those are the games we all yearn for!

Cya

b

natedogg
05-28-2004, 01:37 AM
PokerBabe, you're talking about Vegas mid-limit winners who have failed to adjust to the games now that they play more like aggressive low-limit california games. Welcome to low-limit variance guys. The swings are enormous.

But that's neither here nor there.

I was talking about the big name tourney pros dropping like flies and everyone all over the internet (and probably the media too) claiming this is a signal of the new order for poker.

I'm saying no, the tourney pros are indeed great players, the game has not passed them by. There are just many more great players out there than people give credit for (including you). Midlimit vegas games are entirely irrelevant to the discussion but for what it's worth, I think it's funny that all these "pro" 20-40 players can't win anymore because of all the suckouts. Damn that's funny.

And if these new terrible players are playing in a way that the pros must call the river more, maybe they aren't playing so bad eh? In the case of your example, I believe you actually ARE talking about people who have let the game pass them by.

But for the famous tourney pros, I think it's just silly to assert they are dinosaurs. It's just that media and many vociferous onliner folks have long under-estimated how many good players are out there that nobody has heard of.

Greg Raymer case in point. do you think he's heading to the final table because Chris Ferguson and D.Negreanu and Johnny Chan suddenly forgot how to play, or maybe it's just that he can play too.

natedogg

PokerBabe(aka)
05-28-2004, 01:53 AM
Hi natedoggie....

I am thrilled ahout Fossilman. He is an outstanding player and has worked hard on his game to get to that final table.

As for the midlimit boyz here in Vegas, they are not blundering idiots by any means. They are not failing to adjust anymore than the wannabes are. It works both ways, you see?

LGPG,

Babe /images/graemlins/heart.gif

Boris
05-28-2004, 05:50 AM
4 of nine players at final table qualified through Pokerstars. Maybe those Internet crazies arent so bad after all?

Clarkmeister
05-28-2004, 11:44 AM
"As for the midlimit boyz here in Vegas, they are not blundering idiots by any means. They are not failing to adjust anymore than the wannabes are. It works both ways, you see?"

No.

benfranklin
05-28-2004, 01:10 PM
[ QUOTE ]
4 of nine players at final table qualified through Pokerstars.

[/ QUOTE ]

Confirming the consensus opinion here that the fish are at Party??

SinCityGuy
05-29-2004, 04:51 AM
[ QUOTE ]
Because the "newer contingent" I am describing makes so many errors (both before and after the flop, it often requires the pros to pay off more at the river and to put more bets in on other streets.

[/ QUOTE ]

The variance is much higher, but I don't mind playing against these people. Last night, I was playing against a guy from LA who plays a lot at the Commerce Club. He was 4-betting preflop with hands like AJo and KQo. Even though I lost to him (and he ended walking out with 6 racks), it didn't really bother me. Most of the big pots that he won against me were with dominated hands that ended up hitting their weak kicker on the turn or river, or getting runners for a straight, etc. He had a lot of the old timers on tilt, but they couldn't really see through what was happening.

The secret to beating these people is good old fashioned tight/aggressive play, and eventually their dominated hands end up as long term losers.

Zeno
05-29-2004, 10:51 PM
Some of this does not make sense to me. I assume that mid-limit is say 10/20 to 30/60 Hold'em. Even in Vegas this limits the games you have to choose from. But what 'Pro' would limit themselves to options and one type of game? Should not a 'Pro' be able to not only play multiple limits but multiple types of poker? Especially Stud and Omaha 8 - thus, increasing the pool of good games to choose from. I would think that this would be a sound strategy for trying to make a living playing poker, and also a network of cooperative friends to get info on the best games X, Y, or Z at casino, A, B or C etc.

In addition any 'Pro', by definition should be able to adjust, readjust, and continually be able to play a deceptive game and with the influx of new players should thrive and not go downhill. Variance, perhaps, would increase but overall such players should thrive.

-Zeno

Sam Rolstein
05-29-2004, 11:56 PM
I think this years huge field in the WSOP has had to have made the pros very uneasy.The old days of having to overcome the luck of a few dead money players at your table is over. Next year every wacko gambler with $10,000 will be wanting a seat in this game. They will have to put tables out on Freemont Street!

PokerBabe(aka)
05-30-2004, 12:24 AM
Yes, Zeno, you are correct that a real pro will adjust his/her game to suit conditions. Certainly, the best ones are doing that now. The games in Vegas are outstanding at the moment, but as you surely understand, that does not guarantee that the local pros are "getting the best of it." There are some of those "old school" guys currently getting hammered. I mean not just losing a bit, but getting hammered.

Today, I watched an excellent local pro lose 2 racks in a "good game". One guy played so dreadfully it was disgusting. Clark hints that (at times) these losses are due to the locals only being able to play a "certain type" of game. What kind of game are you supposed to play when a guy calls 3 cold with trash and then takes down the best starting hand on the river several times in an orbit.? The beats are just so ridiculous it's hard to believe. I certainly don't think that the local pros are being outplayed like Clark seems to suggest. I do believe that it's much harder to win when you cannot put a player on a hand, and OZ himself could not read the guy in my game today. Does that make him a "good, deceptive and creative player?" Hell no. It makes him an idiot who will go broke because he doesn't understand the fundamentals of the game. So sure, in the final analysis, the pros will overcome (if they don't quit or go broke first) /images/graemlins/crazy.gif /images/graemlins/confused.gif

It is often implied in some of our colleagues' remarks that a "higher variance" game is a better one. Why do people believe that? When the stock market goes way up and then crashes, it takes a long time to recover. In fact, there is no guarantee that it ever will recover. When a pro's bankroll gets decimated because of these "higher variance" games, what guarantee does he have that he will overcome the losses? Quite simply, if your bankroll is cripled, the point is moot, isn't it?

I believe (unlike Clark) that some of the new guys fail to adjust their game as much as some of the oldtimers do. How else can you explain calling 3 cold with 10,5 off vs a solid pro who raises UTG and then is 3 bet by another solid pro? Can you really tell me that Mr. wannabe poker player is "adjusting"? Or, is it "adjusting" to a "tight" game when a wannabe poker player limps in 2 UTG with J, 4 offsuit, catches a 4 on the flop and then a J on the river? LOL. /images/graemlins/laugh.gif /images/graemlins/grin.gif How about when a guy 3 bets me with Q, 9 offsuit after I raise a board of Q, 7, 2? If he's watched me at all, he cannot possibly think he has the best hand. He also cannot possibly think I am folding A,Q there. So, as I said, these guys are failing to adjust just as much as their tight-butt old school opposites /images/graemlins/wink.gif. They are making huge and multiple errors and I would hardly classify any of these plays as "adjustments" which are designed to beat 20-40 Vegas pros.

LGPG,

Babe. /images/graemlins/heart.gif

mike l.
05-30-2004, 12:41 AM
"They literally beat up on the same 20 or so people day in day out for years."

hey that's what im doing...

uh oh.

jdl22
05-30-2004, 01:12 AM
You seem to be saying that it's impossible to beat games where people call 3 cold with trash. That's a fascinating point of view.

Obviously there are major adjustments that need to be made but if you think that games like this can't be beaten or aren't good games (why else would you use quotation marks) then to be honest I don't know how to respond.

If you're playing in one of these games you would rather have the guy fold than call three cold with J4o?

Am I supposed to feel sorry for pros that can't beat a 10/20 game that plays like .5/1 on party when people can beat that game for more than 3 bb/hr?

andyfox
05-30-2004, 01:24 AM
"I do believe that it's much harder to win when you cannot put a player on a hand"

Yes and no. Yes, if the guy is a good player, so that you don't know whether he has A-K or A-A. No, if the guy is, as you phrase it, an "idiot" who is playing "trash" for 3 cold, so that you don't know whether he has J-T or J-9. GIGO (garbage in, garbage out) still holds. If these guys are going broke because they don't understand the fundamentals of the game, I'm going to get a piece of their bankroll.

PokerBabe(aka)
05-30-2004, 01:39 AM
Hi jdl22

Of course, the guy with the J,4 is beatable. Of course, the players making numerous errors are beatable. Of course, it's all good in the long run.

However, when years of work at handreading goes out the window, what tools does the "old school" guy have? The guy that beat the game for 20 years now cannot tell if his opponent has AA or 10,5 off /images/graemlins/confused.gif. I really think that handreading is one of the most important skills in poker. If you disagree, please explain.

Now, as for how we decide if a game is "beatable", that really depends on your goal, doesn't it? Are you trying to beat the game on a regular basis and avoid large losses while doing so? Are you trying to take Lithium while you play to mellow out those "swings" we take in the "higher variance" games? What is it that you are trying to accomplish? I think it's not about winning the most pots or the biggest pots, but about winning consistently with minor drawdowns.

I was an options trader for many years and I still trade. The most important thing I learned was to trade size that would never corrupt my capital and to avoid large losses. The phrase which still rings in my ears is "if you cannot take a small loss, you are destined to take a large one" (or something to that effect). The other one was "let your profits run but cut your losses short". I think many Vegas midlimit pros understand these concepts, but many newer players do not. Maybe they didn't take a course in risk management in college, or maybe they just enjoy gambling. All I know is that many of the guys I play with at the Mirage are really struggling lately. Maybe you don't understand that because you are doing well. Maybe you dont' understand that because you think they are not "adjusting". I am simply telling you that it's been difficult for the experienced pros to beat the games as they once did.

LGPG,

Babe /images/graemlins/heart.gif

natedogg
05-30-2004, 01:53 AM
Hi pokerbabe. I want to say again that you are discussing something entirely different from what I was saying in my original post.

That said, I still think what you are seeing and experiencing is nothing more than a game that has higher variance, and some of the pros in that game are not emotionally equipped to deal with it.

All the examples you have given are STANDARD for every limit game I've played in. You say "Today, I watched an excellent local pro lose 2 racks in a "good game", as if it's something exceptional.

Now, the whole point of my original post was not that the clueless newcomers to your Mirage 20-40 game are actually as good as you.

My point was that today we see a lot of "no name" amateurs are doing well vs. top no limit tourney pros and a commonly voiced reaction has been that the top tourney pros are dinosaurs, that there's a new wave of young poker players with a new approach to the game that is mowing down the pros.

My take was that this was totally incorrect. The pros are just as great as always. It's just that there are way more excellent players out there than cardplayer magazine would have you believe. Even some pros seem to equate "not famous" with "not very good". But I think for the most part it's the folks who read and follow tourney poker who overestimate how rare it is to be an excellent no limit tourney player.

As far as the vegas 20-40 goes, where "The beats are just so ridiculous it's hard to believe", I can honestly say that is the only kind of experience in limit hold'em I've ever known.

natedogg

jdl22
05-30-2004, 02:05 AM
The old man has cards. If he is in a pot (other than for free or cheap in the blinds) he will have better cards than the guys he's up against. He also of course will know not to chase draws without odds and such.

Hand reading is a good skill to have and is something experienced players tend to have over their inexperienced foes. Having said that the game is much more profitable (albeit with higher variance) if you have a couple guys at your table that will play any two and take to showdown any piece of the board.

Perhaps the key is in your last paragraph. Are these guys really losing players now, or have they just not adjusted their bankroll for the increased variance?

SinCityGuy
05-30-2004, 04:02 AM
[ QUOTE ]
I really think that handreading is one of the most important skills in poker. If you disagree, please explain.

[/ QUOTE ]

Handreading is an integral part of winning against tough players.

Against these morons, handreading is not important. Playing premium hands that dominate theirs in the long run is more important. It's boring poker, and sometimes frustrating, but in the long run it gets the money.

PokerBabe(aka)
05-30-2004, 04:10 AM
Hey natedoggie...

Excuse me if I digress..I know I took this thread on a bit of a tangent. Sorry /images/graemlins/laugh.gif

PokerBabe(aka)
05-30-2004, 04:39 AM
Are these guys really losing players now, or have they just not adjusted their bankroll for the increased variance?

Very good question.

I suspect it's much about bankroll. I was thinking about our typical buy-ins in the dayshift 20 game. In the past, it was not atypical to see at least half the dayshift guys buy in for 500-600. In fact, there is one guy who still normally only buys in for that amount. I am sure that seems quite low to many of the midstakes posters here.

However, over the last year, I have noticed many guys going to 700-1K. My buy-in is typically 800, but I will sometimes adjust up depending on the average stack size.

One of the old timers who is a winning player actually got into a game for 2k about 2 months ago. That was the most he was ever in any 20-40 poker game in his life. This guy plays 6 days a week almost exclusively at 20-40, and he was really astounded at this. I was very surprized as well. Another guy who is a winning player had his worst losing day EVER in any game not too long ago (he's been playing for 30 years). I didnt' want to hear the gory details, but I asked if it was over 3 racks and he said "oh yea", like maybe it was closer to 5. /images/graemlins/confused.gif That is extreme poker for these boyz. These numbers are simply not within their poker paradigm. Obviously, they must rethink their financial commitments to the game if they are going to play optimally.

LGPG,

Babe /images/graemlins/heart.gif

PokerBabe(aka)
05-30-2004, 04:45 AM
Even though I lost to him (and he ended walking out with 6 racks), it didn't really bother me.

REALLY? Would it bother you to lose if you were outplayed?

/images/graemlins/heart.gif

SinCityGuy
05-30-2004, 05:16 AM
[ QUOTE ]
REALLY? Would it bother you to lose if you were outplayed?

[/ QUOTE ]

Yes, when I am outplayed, it bothers me and I am concerned.

However, I'm not overly concerned when I lose because AJo three bets my UTG AK raise, flops an ace and rivers a jack. I'm going to beat him nine out of ten times in this situation. That nine out of ten times doesn't show up in a four hour session, but it is very evident and profitable over the course of thousands of hands.

SinCityGuy
05-30-2004, 05:20 AM
[ QUOTE ]
In the past, it was not atypical to see at least half the dayshift guys buy in for 500-600. In fact, there is one guy who still normally only buys in for that amount. I am sure that seems quite low to many of the midstakes posters here.

[/ QUOTE ]

12.5 big bets is a horrible buy-in for any game. In a 20/40 game, you should be buying in for at least two racks.

bunky9590
05-30-2004, 08:25 AM
[ QUOTE ]
limit games on the net (as a general rule) have a much larger variance and require a much much bigger bankroll to play successfully.

there's a lot to be said for a pro avoiding a high variance game they can't afford to play.


[/ QUOTE ]

Hence my move from limit holdem online into NLHE. I am a limit animal with very good earn and 6 years experience who has moved to NL online to reduce the variance and earn more money. They want to make mistakes? Let it not be for one bet but for their stack.

Roy Munson
05-30-2004, 09:34 AM
I am a bad player and I have been bluffed many times.

afish
05-30-2004, 09:36 AM
Skansky wrote an essay stating that when your opponents are playing anything, you don't win that much money with your mediocre hands. You make money by winning a ton more when you have premium hands (e.g. high pocket pairs) and get paid off all the way. The value of hand reading against a good player has got to be less than the overlay you have playing better starting hands against a terrible player for multiple bets.

PokerBabe(aka)
05-30-2004, 10:59 AM
LOL, Ray. /images/graemlins/grin.gif

PokerBabe(aka)
05-30-2004, 11:02 AM
Two local pros who played 10-20 for years here are now almost exclusively playing NL at Bellagio. They feel the same way as turnip.

Babe /images/graemlins/heart.gif

PokerBabe(aka)
05-30-2004, 11:07 AM
Sin-
Yes, that is a bit low, but this guy doesn't get involved in too many pots. /images/graemlins/grin.gif

For me, 20 big bets seems a good place to start, unles there are humongous stacks on the game.

Some people like to keep their buy-ins smaller because they feel it makes them play tighter.

Babe /images/graemlins/heart.gif

SinCityGuy
05-30-2004, 11:28 AM
PokerBabe,

Sounds like you've got a great gig going on the dayshift with a bunch of people who are afraid of their own shadows.

You are smart to buy in for 20 bets, but the guys who buy in short stacked are being very foolish. How would they like to be all-in with a straight flush against a nut flush and quads? (I've seen it happen).

I've been playing at night, but I think I'm going to have to stop by and check out the dynamics of the dayshift crowd.

bernie
05-30-2004, 03:01 PM
[ QUOTE ]
Some people like to keep their buy-ins smaller because they feel it makes them play tighter.


[/ QUOTE ]

True. But it could also cause them to play overtight. there-by missing some profitable situations. Essentially, so tight it strangles part of their profits. 12.5 BBs is barely over a maxed hand up here. 1 hand.

It's one thing to buy in for that much knowing you will rebuy later, but another to limit one's session to this amount. That would be unreasonable.

b

PokerBabe(aka)
05-31-2004, 12:36 AM
Sin,

You are certainly welcome to check out my gig, but remember one thing; when an "old school" player raises you on the turn, run spot run. /images/graemlins/laugh.gif

LGPG,

See you on the 10-5 shift /images/graemlins/smile.gif

Babe /images/graemlins/heart.gif

SinCityGuy
05-31-2004, 12:47 AM
[ QUOTE ]
You are certainly welcome to check out my gig, but remember one thing; when an "old school" player raises you on the turn, run spot run. /images/graemlins/laugh.gif

[/ QUOTE ]

No problem, as long as they fold to my turn raises, too. /images/graemlins/wink.gif

sumdumguy
05-31-2004, 02:41 AM
Right idea - wrong analogy/example..
poker stars doesn't have many internet crazies! /images/graemlins/smile.gif

turnipmonster
05-31-2004, 09:40 AM
fwiw, I almost never play anything but PL/NL live, but online I much prefer limit, mainly because I feel that earn is higher (obviously variance is higher as well) than in NL. plus, there aren't enough big NL games on the site I play (party). to me the main value of playing online is the increased volume of hands, and the game where that increases my earn the most is limit. for NL/PL, I don't mind a slow game but need to watch and know my opponents as well as the table rhythm to make good decisions.

--turnipmonster

turnipmonster
05-31-2004, 09:42 AM
most online pros seem to be extremely tolerant to very large swings. on the heads up and shorthanded forum, those guys talk about 200BB downswings like it's another day at the office.

--turnipmonster

Joe Tall
05-31-2004, 06:21 PM
[ QUOTE ]
Very good question.

I suspect it's much about bankroll. I was thinking about our typical buy-ins in the dayshift 20 game. In the past, it was not atypical to see at least half the dayshift guys buy in for 500-600. In fact, there is one guy who still normally only buys in for that amount. I am sure that seems quite low to many of the midstakes posters here.

However, over the last year, I have noticed many guys going to 700-1K. My buy-in is typically 800, but I will sometimes adjust up depending on the average stack size.

One of the old timers who is a winning player actually got into a game for 2k about 2 months ago. That was the most he was ever in any 20-40 poker game in his life. This guy plays 6 days a week almost exclusively at 20-40, and he was really astounded at this. I was very surprized as well. Another guy who is a winning player had his worst losing day EVER in any game not too long ago (he's been playing for 30 years). I didnt' want to hear the gory details, but I asked if it was over 3 racks and he said "oh yea", like maybe it was closer to 5. That is extreme poker for these boyz. These numbers are simply not within their poker paradigm. Obviously, they must rethink their financial commitments to the game if they are going to play optimally.


[/ QUOTE ]

Hi Babe,

This is only post in this thread that is sound. The rest is sounds like you've been taking a beating in these games and are not sure where to point the finger other than than the bad play of your opponents (which is absurd and I know you know this). I hope that you are not and are only trying sympathize with your collegues.

Yes, the variance has increased in the games that you are used to, however, what you have increasingly said is the variance is damaging. I have built a bankroll in a year from 1/2 online to 20/40 live in these games with constant study, reading and posting. I believe if you know how to make adjustments to each and every game, the increased variance can work largely in your favor over time.

Take care, Babe.

Peace,
Joe Tall

sumdumguy
05-31-2004, 07:47 PM
[ QUOTE ]
most online pros seem to be extremely tolerant to very large swings. on the heads up and shorthanded forum, those guys talk about 200BB downswings like it's another day at the office.

[/ QUOTE ]

What did you expect? I'll step out a little and suggest the average online pro plays 3 games simultaneously. Actually, I personally know one that plays up to 7 shorthanded games at once, but he can only maintain it for a few hours - he doesn't like working long hours. /images/graemlins/smile.gif

3 games x 60 H/hour = 180 hands in 1 hour. That's the equivalent of almost 6 hours of live play. They shouldn't experience more big swings per 100 hands than a B&M player, but they will experience many more big swings on a per year basis. Also, SH can hit 110+ hands/hour and swings are naturally bigger in SH as well.

You have to be tough as nails, hard as rock and cold as steel.
The dicipline of an online pro can be... inhuman.

PokerBabe(aka)
05-31-2004, 07:53 PM
Hi JoeTall,

I am not a big fan of "high variance" games. This is mostly because I play 5 days a week, and at the end of the day I really, really dislike losing /images/graemlins/confused.gif /images/graemlins/crazy.gif

Give me the easier way, cuz at the end of the day it's all money to me.....

LGPG,

Babe /images/graemlins/heart.gif

P.S. I am not losing my skirt, but my win rate is way down and my std. deviation is up. /images/graemlins/confused.gif

LGPG,

Babe /images/graemlins/heart.gif

jwvdcw
05-31-2004, 09:20 PM
[ QUOTE ]
The bluffees couldn't be reached for comment, because they were still at the table, playing poker.



[/ QUOTE ]

/images/graemlins/grin.gif /images/graemlins/grin.gif

SinCityGuy
06-01-2004, 04:02 AM
[ QUOTE ]
Everyone should quit whining about the "bad players" and focus on playing the poker needed to BEAT the new wave...

[/ QUOTE ]

EasyE,

My observations on this, FWIW:

The players who are suffering the most from the influx of mid-limit idiots are the old-time weak/tight players and the "fancy play syndrome" players.

The old weak/tight players are caving in and folding too many winners to the morons, and the "fancy play syndrome" guys are wasting their chips trying to outplay them. As I mentioned in another post, the secret to beating these guys in the long run is through dominated hands. The swings are not for the squeemish, but eventually they lose their money.

Stickleback
06-01-2004, 07:19 AM
Long time lurker unlurking, so please forgive me if this is naive…

Is not the number of hands played/hour a major factor here? Say the variance live and on-line is the same per hand played. Measured in real time, the downswings will be much longer playing live. A bad month on-line could easily translate into 6 months or longer live. Very difficult to deal with psychologically, i.e. its take a very solid player to continue to play his A game after taking continual beats for 6 months.

Bankroll considerations also become much tougher (for the pro player), who needs 6 months living expenses as well as X BB.

Steve

T0asty
06-01-2004, 10:46 AM
I think that's an excellent point!

An online pro could take a 3 day downswing and still finish up for an avg week. If they are playing 3-4 tables at once this 3 day downswing could equate to a 2 week downswing for the live player.

During this time the the live player could go bust due to expenses, where the online dude is fine.

Both playing the "new game" that is /images/graemlins/wink.gif

drewjustdrew
06-01-2004, 11:01 AM
When you two are talking buy-in, are you referring to the initial buy-in, or how much you are willing to go into your pocket for? I typically buy-in to a 20/40 game with $500, but am aware that this may not be enough and will often go into my pocket $500 at a time as needed. If I get up early, I don't like all the extra "buy-in" chips in my way. Usually, as long as I have enough to handle an entire hand of betting, I do not buy more chips.

limon
06-01-2004, 12:26 PM
...most of the mid limit pros in vegas ARE blundering idiots in my experience. they stick out like sore thumbs, they play an incredibly predictable game, they have extremely short fuses and high tilt factor, they work off slim bankrolls and have leaks in and out of the poker room and have been bust dozens of times in their "career" and will be bust again. the mid/high limit pros in l.a. and the bay are much tougher and more adaptable. most of us eat vegas pros for for breakfast...especially in the big bet games where, as you pointed out, they like to hang out now. i noticed several at Palms a few weaks back...soooo comical.

chrisjp
06-01-2004, 02:07 PM
Kurn,

That's what I believe. I have begun to study with the intent to play tournament NLH. I will never play in a single cash game ever.

First book I read: you guessed it, Sklansky's Tournament book.

Plus I went to the WSOP and just watched from the rail. Watched 25 hours of play the last 4 days.

I don't want to play any limit games, and I don't want to play any NL cash games.

I'm going to play a board game called Tournament NLH. I have an extensive successful background in playing in BJ, CRAPS, Baccarat, Keno, and Sports Tournaments (helps to live in Vegas).

Plus I will be setting up a video library of all the televised contests. With an index to all the players.

And the help of all of you at 2+2 will be invaluable. Thanking you all in advance. I hope that I will be able to return the favor.

We will see how it goes.

Chris

chrisjp
06-01-2004, 02:35 PM
Hi Zeno--

You stated,

"But what 'Pro' would limit themselves to options and one type of game? Should not a 'Pro' be able to not only play multiple limits but multiple types of poker? Especially Stud and Omaha 8 - thus, increasing the pool of good games to choose from. I would think that this would be a sound strategy for trying to make a living playing poker."

I have a different take. I'm not out to be a "Pro" if that is your definition. I want to be an expert Tournament NL player--that's it for me. I don't need or want recognition. In fact I've been quite successful playing in Casino game tournaments, but have tried to avoid any pub.

And now with the proliferation of online tournaments I can play as much as I want. I won't have to wait for a game that I want to play because my expertise is in quite a narrow field.

I enjoy the intellectual challenge, and I especially enjoy the interaction with all of you, so we can bounce these ideas around and all improve -- whatever our goal is.

Chris

adios
06-01-2004, 04:09 PM
Before I get started I really respect what you have to say about poker. I like your posts a lot and I really like your approach to the game. What you seem to be saying too in my mind is that importance of reading hands has diminished in certain games as opposed to other skills. I'm not saying that reading hands isn't important, just that the importance of other aspects of sound play go up in value as people play in a way that makes them harder to read. A long time ago, somewhere in the old archives, there was a discussion that involved Ray and Dave regarding the importance of different skills related to type games and limits. At the time it was an eye opener for me.

PokerBabe(aka)
06-01-2004, 05:47 PM
I'm not out to be a "Pro" if that is your definition. I want to be an expert Tournament NL player--that's it for me. I don't need or want recognition.


Hi Chrisjp,
I agree with your concept about what I call "poker specialization". Personally, I don't have the inclination to become a "pro" at MANY different games. I am specializing in one and that is limit hold 'em. If I ever feel I have learned all there is to know about limit, I can move to another game. /images/graemlins/laugh.gif I recently played some "other games" during the WSOP and found it was not very profitable. I think it's great if a player can move between games with equal success, but it's a challenge that I don't need. I sometimes enjoy playing no limit for small stakes and playing the 2 tier satellites for the WSOP entry. Other than that, I am just focused on limit.

LGPG and do what works...

B /images/graemlins/heart.gifabe

Babe /images/graemlins/heart.gif

chrisjp
06-01-2004, 06:46 PM
Hey Babe,

Nice to meet you. Yes, I admire those that want to master all games, and those that can are amazing. I don't believe I could actually, but it's not something I aspire to anyway. Good luck to all of them, and to you too.

Chris

Zeno
06-01-2004, 09:34 PM
For PokerBabe and Chrisjp:


A 'pro' is obviously someone that makes their living exclusively by playing poker.

There is an old joke about Specialization - knowing more and more about less and less.

Having a pre-estabished plan and outline to poker and sticking to it is obviously an excellent approach especially if you want to make a living at it - but only to a point. Expansion and learning should be maintained to avoid stagnation, boredom, and self imposed limits that can cause decay of playing ability.

I'll use an example - say that at the Orleans a particular jucie Omaha 8 game goes on from about noon on for 3-4 days out of the week - Say you invest $30 bucks and two days time to read and study Ray Zee's High-Low-Split Poker. You set aside X dollars from the Hold'em bankroll and embark on a new game.

I submit that:

A. You will see the carryover in geneal poker concepts very readily.

B. You could consistently win at the Omaha 8 game.

C. Playing Omaha 8 will help your overall poker playing ability and improve your hold'em play as well.


You have just 'doubled' the games you can play in and game selection is key to maintaining a long-term winning stradegy.

Now continue on and do the same for Seven Card Stud and get the 2+2 book on stud.

I do not think that it is all that hard to become proficent in at least 3 different types of poker, especially if you stick to limit poker. There are many basic concepts that are similar - the differences and nuances can be readily learned over time and picked up rather quickly. And each type of game adds perspecitive to the other and enhances the play of all.

IMO.

-Zeno

PokerBabe(aka)
06-01-2004, 11:43 PM
Having a pre-estabished plan and outline to poker and sticking to it is obviously an excellent approach especially if you want to make a living at it - but only to a point. Expansion and learning should be maintained to avoid stagnation, boredom, and self imposed limits that can cause decay of playing ability.

Hi Zeno....,

When I feel bored or not sufficiently challenged I take a break from playing or play a higher limit. I think your points are well taken, and for some, it's fine to branch out and become proficient in more games. It's simply a matter of what you choose to do. For me, Omaha plays a little too loose and stud requires tracking way too many cards (lol). Also, in Vegas, I suspect that the midlimit stud players are probably better than the midlimit hold'em players, overall.

Or, maybe I am just happy in my own little specialized world, eh?

LGPG,
Babe /images/graemlins/heart.gif

M.B.E.
06-02-2004, 08:28 PM
[ QUOTE ]
Even in my own little microcosm of the Vegas dayshift, I have seen 4 or 5 very good players bust out over the last 18 months. These LONG time EXPERIENCED players used to beat the game and no longer found that they could. Did they suddenly "forget" how to play? Surely not. What happened is that they could not beat the "newer contingent" of player who is difficult to read. Because the "newer contingent" I am describing makes so many errors (both before and after the flop, it often requires the pros to pay off more at the river and to put more bets in on other streets. Obviously, this can impact short term results and increase variance until the pros can master the "learning curve" required to play in the "new world".
Additionally, bankroll drawdowns have created problems for previously winning players who can't overcome the variance they are experiencing. Remember, some people actually live off their poker income, so they don't have other sources to fall back on.

[/ QUOTE ]
Babe, I have read through most of this thread and if I understand you correctly, you are saying that the influx of new, wild players has meant that the longtime winning players (in your microcosm) have experienced lower EV (for a short period while they learn what adjustments to make) and higher variance (likely permanent, as long as the games stay wild). However, even though the longtime-winning players' EV may be lower than it used to be, it is still positive; and the higher variance is the reason 4 or 5 of them busted out. Does that fairly paraphrase your argument?

As I understand Clarkmeister's responses, he argues that the longtime-winning players were probably never very good at poker in general, but just had a strategy which was able to beat a tight passive game. If I understand him right, he believes that the players who busted out were likely not playing with positive EV at all after the games were no longer tight-passive.

My question is, how large a fraction of the sample size was the 4 or 5 players who busted out over the last 18 months?

If there are 10 or 15 other longtime-winning players who now are thriving under the new conditions (i.e. doing better now than they were doing 18 months ago, and sometimes over stretches of a month or two doing much better), it would tend to support the view that it was primarily increased variance that resulted in the 4 or 5 players busting out. But if most of the longtime-winning players are doing worse over the last six months than they were doing 18 months ago, it would tend to support Clarkmeister's view that they really are not that good overall holdem players. Because a good player's EV is necessarily going to be higher in a loose game where people are calling three cold with AJ than in a tight passive game where hand-reading is a more important skill.

PokerBabe(aka)
06-02-2004, 09:10 PM
If there are 10 or 15 other longtime-winning players who now are thriving under the new conditions (i.e. doing better now than they were doing 18 months ago, and sometimes over stretches of a month or two doing much better), it would tend to support the view that it was primarily increased variance that resulted in the 4 or 5 players busting out. But if most of the longtime-winning players are doing worse over the last six months than they were doing 18 months ago, it would tend to support Clarkmeister's view that they really are not that good overall holdem players.


Hi MBE,

For the most part, and from what I CAN DEDUCE most of the long term players on "dayshift" are doing worse than they have in the past. I know of only 2 guys who APPEAR to be doing MUCH better lately. One is an outstanding player and so this is not surprising. He is often the best or second best player in the game. The other plays what I would call "a higher variance" game, in that his chips are "always in play". No cobwebs on those stacks /images/graemlins/grin.gif He is an anomoly of course, so by next week he could be broke too /images/graemlins/grin.gif.

It was great seeing you.

Take Care,

Babe /images/graemlins/heart.gif