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PLO starting hands requirement

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PLO starting hands requirement - Sat Oct 04, 2003, 08:16 PM
(#1)
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Hi geezer,

I've started out pot-limit Omaha lately (high and 8 or better), and I find it quite addictive.
As I'm a rookie, I play very tight to be on the safe side and only the hands that looks good to me (aces double suited, 9TJQ etc...).
I read Ciaffone, McEvoy/Cloutier, and Zee book on omaha, so I got the basics more or less right. My main fear is to play too many hands, as I understand that's the most frequent error beginners do (along with drawing to non-nut hands).
What are ur starting hand requirements on PLO high and PLO8 ?
What advice would u give to a determined beginner?

FRC

(others can reply as well...)
 
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Fri Nov 07, 2003, 04:47 AM
(#2)
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The ONLY way you make money playing poker is to play in games where enough other players are playing so bad that they could be said to be throwing money at you.

All of your profits will come from a very few hands. Whoever wins the most pots loses the most money. Find reasons to stay out of pots. It's not that you might win a pot playing for smallish straights, but that when you do win it will be for very few chips but when you lose it will be for a lot. Take QJT9 out of your repertoire. There are almost no Omaha hands playable without either 2 Aces or at least one in some unlikely double suited situation with KK or some such.

For O/8 always insist on a scooping potential. On some occasions this will be a high only hand, but usually it must be a "both-ways" hand. You will watch a lot more pots than you will enter. There is no point in playing marginal entries. When the games get short-handed this changes somewhat, but not as much as you might think.

The big winner is always the rake and unless there are some truly horrible players in the game, you will never beat it over any extended period of time.

Seek games with people playing too many hands, calling too much, and especially in "big bet" games, people who will call to draw (particularly if they will pay to draw to non-nut hands). You can spot and study such games all the time both herein and in free money/low stakes games online.
 
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Fri Nov 07, 2003, 10:02 PM
(#3)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by geezer
Take QJT9 out of your repertoire. There are almost no Omaha hands playable without either 2 Aces or at least one in some unlikely double suited situation with KK or some such.
And if you play like Geezer suggests you will win every hand you play. Because when you enter the pot once every hour or two, everyone will correctly fold.

I understand your point about tight play, but you are kidding with the starting hand requirements mentioned above. The only playable hands are double suited with 2 aces or 2 kings? That's just ridiculous. I apologize if this was a joke and I didn't get it.

Ricky Hard
 
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PLO starters - Sat Nov 08, 2003, 01:02 AM
(#4)
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FRC,

Maybe my advice is worth a little here- I play for a living, and PLO is one of the games I play.

For a start, I'll note that I agree with what Geezer says on PLO/8: unfortunately, with a table of good players, the game is probably the least exciting, unless two monster hands go tete-a-tete. Ray Zee has noted that in the long run PLO/8 will likely die out, for the same reason as high draw and NL side action- the bad players get destroyed in the long run. In PLO high, at least the weak player can book some wins, even if he's a long-term loser. Not much fun to play in a game where tight, tighter and tightest rule the roost.

On the other hand, I can't agree with what Geezer says on PLO high. If I were facing a known super- tight player who only plays/raises with big pairs, that's a game I want to be in!
I will call him down with that Q-J-10-9 double-suited and take his money every time he misses the flop, and a few times when he hits his high set. If this doesn't convince you, check with Rolf, Bob Ciaffone or another top player. Side note: I'd much prefer the call of a raiser with the above holding than a big pair, say Q-Q-x-x.

Alan
 
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Sat Nov 08, 2003, 02:49 PM
(#5)
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I take it u r playing tourneys here not ring games FRC
Early in tourneys just try to peddle the nuts but in the later stages u will have to start getting involved or risk getting anted away.
pl omaha hi and hi lo are games where the knowledgable player has a great advantage- however the final stages of a tourney are more of a lottery than no limit he (especially plo8)
remember your AAds is much more vulnerable than AA in nl holdem.
play tight tight tight early- take advantage of the bad players and then be prepared to change gears later on
pound the short stacks at every opportunity
 
Old
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Tue Nov 11, 2003, 11:34 PM
(#6)
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Let me get this straight: One writer (who "plays for a living") says "On the other hand, I can't agree with what Geezer says on PLO high. If I were facing a known super- tight player who only plays/raises with big pairs, that's a game I want to be in!
I will call him down with that Q-J-10-9 double-suited and take his money every time he misses the flop, and a few times when he hits his high set." Another writer ( who thinks I might have been kidding with my requirements) has a different version of the correct way to play me: "And if you play like Geezer suggests you will win every hand you play. Because when you enter the pot once every hour or two, everyone will correctly fold. "

Depraved, meet Ricky.

First of all, if the game doesn't have many players who fail to heed Ricky's "properly fold" advice, I won't be in it - there's no profit in such games. Second of all if Depraved wants to play QJT9 double-suited against AA ds, welcome to the game. However the described confrontation might come up once every two years.

The point of examining individual hands is to see how they fit with the well-known EV figures. If you persist in playing -EV holdings against players who only play +EV situations, you will irrevocably lose. Many of the so-called premium hands in PLO that don't have AA in them are too rare to spend much time pondering. QQJT ds - please! if you see that once a month I'd be surprised. And if you think it should be played as a premium hand, you're very welcome to the game.

It is crystal clear from all Rolf's posts that he plays VERY FEW hands at PLO and that his opposition is similar to what I observed in my visits to the casino in Amsterdam: most of the players are very weak, play too many hands, and in general behave as if they're gambling at table games like roulette or craps with no regard for much besides the thrill/adrenaline of taking chances and occasionally cracking somebody's decent hand for the thrill of it despite taking way the worst of it almost every time.

When one plays poker for a living it's not very satisfying to realize that it's not your skill, but your opponents' horrible play that ENTIRELY accounts for your profit. You can suffer the delusion that you can make money from players who play about the same way you do, but the rake absolutely prohibits that possibility. That's why the pros wind up lending each other money so often - or get backers.

Imagine that you're a professional tic-tac-toe player or that you make your living flipping coins. Further imagine that the only games you can play for money involve the house taking a 5% rake - now tell me that you believe you can "outplay" the opposition by enough to get there.

Just as you can't overcome the inevitable losses from being forced to make two blind bets every round (although you can lose less than the bad players do), so you can't overcome the rake in a game where everybody attends to playing good cards strongly.

The reason that hands like K9s (talking HE now) show up negative in EV tables derived from long runs of play in real games (as well as in simulations) is that they lose money and although you (by your judicious "outplaying") may approach 0EV with them while others continue to play them routinely and go highly negative, this will never be where you make your money - it will come from a few large pots.

If you're playing in tight games with decent players there probably won't be any huge pots and your best move is to leave the table.
 
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Wed Nov 12, 2003, 12:12 AM
(#7)
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Second of all if Depraved wants to play QJT9 double-suited against AA ds

I'd rather be dealt QJT9 every habd than AAxx every hand! PLO is a game of straights - because the objective is to get your opponents whole stack. to win the MONEY not the POT.

Again, it's not about which hand wins the most pots, its about which hand will win the most money. Flush draws arent worth a whole lot - there is no action after the 3rd suited card hits the board.

To keep things simple, take an example from PLHE, Player 1: KK Player 2: 45

Flop K 3 6

KKK is better than the up and down straight draw, right? or is it?

Now who would you rather be, player 1 or player 2? and ofcourse, why? How would the hand PLAY out?

Let me know what you think, i'll let you know what i think in a day or two.
 
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Wed Nov 12, 2003, 12:49 AM
(#8)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by geezer
Let me get this straight: One writer (who "plays for a living") says "On the other hand, I can't agree with what Geezer says on PLO high. If I were facing a known super- tight player who only plays/raises with big pairs, that's a game I want to be in!
I will call him down with that Q-J-10-9 double-suited and take his money every time he misses the flop, and a few times when he hits his high set."
That's right-I play this game, amongst others, for a living, and no amount of sniping and characterising by way of ' playing for a living' will change it.

One thing that simulations overlook is what happens in real life, when there's further betting to come. Geezer, you're absolutely correct that aces ds are the favourite over the Q-J-10-9 ds above, or any other hand not holding A-A-x-x (that's elementary), but what happens when that flop is, say, 10-9-8 rainbow, to name one, or when it comes total rags? Are you going to bet the aces, get raised and call on deep money, knowing you could be facing a small set, two pair or straight? This could very easily happen, and it gets worse for the lovely aces with multi-way action. Much too easy to outplay the holder of aces then! This is the scenario to be avoided. Poker isn't practised in a vacuum-this is cold reality! While the math is true as far as it goes, are you actually going to put a bundle in after the flop in some of these scenarios, when you may or may not have much the worse of it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by geezer
Another writer ( who thinks I might have been kidding with my requirements) has a different version of the correct way to play me: "And if you play like Geezer suggests you will win every hand you play. Because when you enter the pot once every hour or two, everyone will correctly fold. "

Depraved, meet Ricky.
On this, I don't quite see it Eric's (Ricky Hard's) way either: the game of PLO attracts that gambling type of player more than any other, as played in the USA. Anyone who doubts this would well-advised to check out a typical game at Tunica some time.
Quote:
Originally Posted by geezer
First of all, if the game doesn't have many players who fail to heed Ricky's "properly fold" advice, I won't be in it - there's no profit in such games. Second of all if Depraved wants to play QJT9 double-suited against AA ds, welcome to the game. However the described confrontation might come up once every two years.
As I said, post-flop, I'm going to have many easy decisions to take, especially when you only raise with premium hands: I'll know when to bet most of the time, when to take the free card, and when I can take the pot away from you. You're rarely going to be totally sure what I hold, whereas I'll be very likely indeed to know where you stand.

On the super-tight games, I'm with you 100%- there's negative EV playing them, even though I expect I'll outplay my opposition most of the time in typical games. You want to say I'm an arrogant SOB, go for it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by geezer
The point of examining individual hands is to see how they fit with the well-known EV figures. If you persist in playing -EV holdings against players who only play +EV situations, you will irrevocably lose. Many of the so-called premium hands in PLO that don't have AA in them are too rare to spend much time pondering. QQJT ds - please! if you see that once a month I'd be surprised. And if you think it should be played as a premium hand, you're very welcome to the game.
Are you going to pound with your black aces after the flop in holdem, when it comes 10-9-8 of hearts or diamonds? Yes, your hand was clearly favoured over any other, but values have changed. There are situations in which hands with negative EV can be played post-flop; conversely, as above, we have a basic example of a hand that clearly has lost much of its lustre. Fail to adjust, and I guarantee many losing sessions in your days to come!

Quote:
Originally Posted by geezer
It is crystal clear from all Rolf's posts that he plays VERY FEW hands at PLO and that his opposition is similar to what I observed in my visits to the casino in Amsterdam: most of the players are very weak, play too many hands, and in general behave as if they're gambling at table games like roulette or craps with no regard for much besides the thrill/adrenaline of taking chances and occasionally cracking somebody's decent hand for the thrill of it despite taking way the worst of it almost every time.

When one plays poker for a living it's not very satisfying to realize that it's not your skill, but your opponents' horrible play that ENTIRELY accounts for your profit. You can suffer the delusion that you can make money from players who play about the same way you do, but the rake absolutely prohibits that possibility. That's why the pros wind up lending each other money so often - or get backers.

Imagine that you're a professional tic-tac-toe player or that you make your living flipping coins. Further imagine that the only games you can play for money involve the house taking a 5% rake - now tell me that you believe you can "outplay" the opposition by enough to get there.

Just as you can't overcome the inevitable losses from being forced to make two blind bets every round (although you can lose less than the bad players do), so you can't overcome the rake in a game where everybody attends to playing good cards strongly.

The reason that hands like K9s (talking HE now) show up negative in EV tables derived from long runs of play in real games (as well as in simulations) is that they lose money and although you (by your judicious "outplaying") may approach 0EV with them while others continue to play them routinely and go highly negative, this will never be where you make your money - it will come from a few large pots.

If you're playing in tight games with decent players there probably won't be any huge pots and your best move is to leave the table.
Entirely responsible? So, that leaves me, the automaton, just mechanically taking decisions on solely the cards, without regard for all the other factors in a poker game. This thesis is absolute rubbish.

In a typical game, I expect with average cards, I'll be able to outplay the opposition.

Like Rolf, I play fewer hands than typical players, but it comes back to making the proper adjustments. Those who fail in this aspect must lose .

BTW, many pros have leaks in games away from the poker table- often, the qualities which enable them to succeed in poker are a detriment elsewhere. Stu Ungar was a prime example, in his blind arrogance.

Alan
 
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Wed Nov 12, 2003, 03:03 AM
(#9)
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My response was quickly made to show the ridiculous starting hand suggestions from Geezer. I was just pointing out how predictable a player like this would be, and how infrequently they would be in a pot. After thinking about this a little more I totally agree with Depraved's posts and his analysis. It isn't too hard to outplay someone if you know what they have and they don't know what you have.

I have always been amused at Geezer's continuous posts preaching nothing but the tightest starting hand requirements with no room for creativity. Poker is more than just a game of cards. It is also a game of people and a game of situations.

Doyle Brunson has said that he could beat many players without ever looking at his cards. How he could do that without Geezer's starting hand requirements list is beyond me.

Ricky Hard
(Deferring to Depraved for PLO analysis for remainder of thread)
 
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Wed Nov 12, 2003, 06:19 AM
(#10)
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Depraved wrote: "In a typical game, I expect with average cards, I'll be able to outplay the opposition."

Of course and without being "characteriz(s)ed" as "snide" (I really meant no flame-throwing, you clearly understand this stuff OK) I will reiterate that the "typical game" in which you will bother to play, there are at least some players who play bad or there's no money to be won but just a bunch of reasonably knowledgeable players shoving blinds about as the rake extracts its inevitable toll.

In fact much of the emphasis on "deception" and avoidance of being "easy to read" is way overblown. The games that can be beat at all contain players who will make the horrible plays with your cards turned up.

In big bet poker (more so in NL of course) the ability to limp and then choose dump/push is heavily constricted. Although you can find individual examples where some of the proposed events will possibly even favor playing against AAsingle (or double) suited, on long terms this just is a delusion
and I actually don't think you do it against a strong/tight player - remember most of the canards about "rocks" are based on the stereotype of the tight player as someone who plays weak and is proud of folding good hands to pressure.

As to Brunson's claim of playing without looking at the cards, there are indeed situations where one can do that but it depends very heavily on a couple of factors: very deep stacks compared to whoever he's bullying; weak players (usually with small stacks).

Part of Ungar's "arrogance" was the fact that he often had backers who were themselves compulsive gamblers and liked that feature. You must remember that Jimmy the Greek had huge backing for shooting craps, and I doubt you would argue that was a +EV environment.

No matter how analytical of individual events one gets there can be little doubt that poker profits hinge entirely on there being losers at the table, as defined by weak play and playing too many hands.

Now to address the notion that straights are a big factor in big bet Omaha, I strongly challenge that notion on the very issues that are being raised, you will actually win more small pots and lose big when beat as you chase those hands. I especially dispute that decent players are more likely to be
cautious to flush-possible boards and perhaps overlook straight-possible ones. When you play against "any four might score" players, you obviously must not discount that they might have a 9 and a 7 in their hand. And on some occasions you must even pay them off if they've been putting a lot of money into every pot with those holdings.

And as to KK vs. 45 in big bet HE and a flop of K36, Bring It On! Whoever plays for a big raise with 45 is exactly who you want in your game. He will have had to throw it away so many times and chase futilely in the situation you describe for the rest of his chips that he is the quintessential
"welcome to the game" player. Not only will the 45 lose about 3/4 of the time, he will lose the pre-flop raise an inordinate amount of the time and all his chips most of the other times. It's not even close. You specified PL and that softens the blow a bit, but he will be severely committed on the flop even in that format.

I'm glad that the notion of attending almost religiously to starting card values is amusing because one thing I notice (even about Brunson who claims to be able to play without regard to the cards) is that ALL the studies of poker by winning players almost slavishly deal with the cards and the
details of situations are always very iffy. In "good" games, most "plays" are completely pointless and if that makes one seem like an automoton, so be it. However, in actual practice there is a lot to it because the cards might cover the "tight" part but they really don't address the "strong" part and that's of course where the poker comes in and in fact is why 'bots are rather unlikely to prevail agains tight/strong play by clever humans.

What I am saying is that good players are indeed "clever" but that on the whole they overrate that aspect of their success and underrate the importance of being in games with losers. It's just not very satisfying to have to admit that your triumphs come from other people playing horrible rather than from you playing smart.

---
 
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Wed Nov 12, 2003, 04:34 PM
(#11)
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Since: Jun 2010
Posts: 4,392
At a 10-handed table probability dictates that you will win 10% of the hands dealt. The way to maximze your return is to:
  • Choose those hands/situations wisely
  • Maximize your wins
  • Minimize your losses
How the above are accomplished is unique to each individual depending on their particular skills. As was discussed in another thread, winning poker players make mathematically correct decisions. However, these decisions are rarely made solely on mathematical reasoning.
 
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Wed Nov 12, 2003, 05:42 PM
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Well I love this thread. Everyone knows I play tighter than a [fill in the blank]. But even I am not in the AAxx, KKxx double suited only camp.

In a HE tourney situation if you only played AA and KK - you'd blind out more than not, waiting for your premium hands. And players would soon learn to fold to you in a hurry - limiting your payoff. In a HE ring game it only gets worse as the value of the big pair diminishes with the number of callers, thus, increasing the potential for a drawout. The same applies to PLO - only more so.

Because you are dealing with 4 cards - top pair, top two pair, and a set, for that matter - are hands that seldom hold up. It is often said that Omaha is a game of outs while HE is a game of made hands. You are looking for str8s, flushes and boats. Late in a PLO tourney, AAxx, KKxx double suited are pot size raising hands - especially on the hope that with a very large pot size raise you can eliminate all callers or get heads-up. But early in a tournament when money is deep and the pot is small - even these desirable hands are at risk with a raise if you can't effectively narrow the field. And again in ring games - where surviving a single hand holds less meaning than in a tournament - narrowing the field with a raise is less effective.

With Omaha you are looking for a hand with premium draws - and preferably a hand that "works together." Fit or fold on the flop is paramount - maybe even more important than what you start with. If you don't hit at least two pair/set - or a nut st8 or flush draw (and only if the board has not paired) on the flop - you'd better be gone with the wind.

I agree that people tend to play far too many hands in Omaha. But just like suited connectors have a place in HE - so do decent double suited connectors in Omaha - and maybe more so because of the importance of the draw.

So color me pleased that I am not the tightest PLO player on the site - I was starting to worry.

doe
 
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Wed Nov 12, 2003, 06:53 PM
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"welcome to the game"

Thanks Tim. Where do you play your PLHE?

Anybody else got an oppinion on KK vs 45 on a board of K 3 6.

The game is PLO (edit: PLHE), at a limit high enough to make a living - not that it makes a big difference
 
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Thu Nov 13, 2003, 01:12 AM
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Paul,

In Tunica, i recently played a hand in PLO which went this way:
I limped for $10 with K-K-Q-x ds in spades and clubs, the next player also came in, and the SB (very much a gambler, doesn't have to hold a huge hand) made it 50 to go, all calling. The flop was K :d: Q :c: 6 :d: . The SB bet 200, the BB folded, I made it 800, the next player passed and the SB popped it again to 2400. With about 3400 in front of me, I wasn't going to dog this, so I moved in and was called. The turn was a nine and the river a blank, my opponent turning over A :d: J :d: 10 :h: 10 :s: for the nut straight.

Did I like losing $4300 on this hand? Of course not. Would I play this one again? Absolutely: I was more than 2-1 on with top set facing only the gutshot+ flush draw, and as you said, there are times when one must pay off these gambling types of players, unless one wants to turn turtle at the first sign of trouble.

Tim,

' ....... typical game in which I will bother to play'? In my live action,I've played PLO with players anywhere from unknowns to a game with two former WSOP winners, plus another top pro. This reference seems presumptuous-you're implying an attitude of condescension on my part. Like anyone who hopes to succeed, I choose my games as much as possible.

The stereotype of the tight player is most amusing, really, and I want to play with someone who will lay one down whenever I turn the works on them.

To me, it's of no concern whatever whether a play is 'clever' or any other adjective; when I sit down, I am just trying do a job the best way I know how, with all the weapons in my armoury, one of those being the exploitation of poor play by others.

Alan
 
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Thu Nov 13, 2003, 06:32 PM
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By trying to simplify things i've just complicated them! I withdraw my post(s).

Bottom line is the hand that is favourite to win the pot isn't always favourite to with the money. That is just fact. That was my point, and now i've made it!

I'll save my hold'em thing for another day. There was actually an old proposition bet in Vegas that involved AA vs XX in a pot limit pre flop structure and a no-limit post flop structure. Needless to say the guy who took AA didnt go home with the money! Maybe some of you know of this? See you at the tables.
 
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Mon Oct 18, 2004, 06:23 PM
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test
 
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Mon Nov 22, 2004, 06:23 PM
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I've been away for quite a while (I actually do have an elaborate "real life") and come back to a continuous rage about "predictable" = "loser" and notions about how to play successfully in tournaments.

The one theme that I've gotten across to a few is that poker, in vacuuo (no rake) is a zero sum game - in the real world it's a minus sum game because the house ALWAYS wins. Although it's mostly "proved" anecdotally, it is absolutely clear that there is some rake % that cannot be beat by the greatest player in the world vs. 9 fish. In my opinion that rake is actually below 10%, which is frequently the rake in tournaments.

To say that some players "beat" tournament poker is to overlook the fact that essentially all of the regular players "cheat" in the sense of sharing BRs through buying pieces of one another and making "hedge deals" as well as elaborate socially structured loan conditions.

As to beating players without looking at the cards, this is the whole point of my widely ridiculed contentions: none of those strategies (mostly bullying, etc.) work (or are even tried by good players) unless one has utilized the most (perhaps only) important poker skill: selecting a game with enough losers to offset the rake.

I will play the "age card" because I've now played for over 70 years and watched people who win consistently (and you'd be surprised at how few of them there are) and every single one of them plays tight and strong. The swashbuckling players can win, often for quite a while, so long as they play vs. weak players.

ALL of the players who contend that they play mostly against the players instead of attending to cards/odds belie their stance by always discussing the cards.

The other thing about tournament play success is that in many cases the payoff is so huge that one can actually be a lifetime winner from just one success. Just like a lottery. But that doesn't make it +EV.

Rational discussions of game strategies that allow inclusion of "playing when you're catching cards", etc. serves little place in a "school" because after all we are trying to be sane rather than superstitious.

To get back to the main issue of whether you, by conscious choice draw to medium size straights in PLO, I've yet to see anything to convince me that this makes any sense whatsoever. The downside outweighs the upside and if you're in a game with weak players it's best just to be very friendly with them because they are your customers. Make it so they want to play against you because they will actually take way the worst of it just so they can get the rush from "beating the rock".

TIGHT DOES NOT EQUAL WEAK! And previous posts in this thread make it clear that "strong" is the part of the equation that is where the poker comes in. And it's not easily quantifiable: more of "I can recognize it better than I can define it" - but the maths of probabilities regarding card holdings are immutable.

Love.
 
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Mon Nov 22, 2004, 06:52 PM
(#18)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulRobb
Second of all if Depraved wants to play QJT9 double-suited against AA ds

I'd rather be dealt QJT9 every habd than AAxx every hand! PLO is a game of straights - because the objective is to get your opponents whole stack. to win the MONEY not the POT.

Again, it's not about which hand wins the most pots, its about which hand will win the most money. Flush draws arent worth a whole lot - there is no action after the 3rd suited card hits the board.

To keep things simple, take an example from PLHE, Player 1: KK Player 2: 45

Flop K 3 6

KKK is better than the up and down straight draw, right? or is it?

Now who would you rather be, player 1 or player 2? and ofcourse, why? How would the hand PLAY out?

Let me know what you think, i'll let you know what i think in a day or two.
I play pretty tight in Omaha and 8 and while you say it's a game of straights I contend it's a game of the most outs.

I would play a hand like Ts Th 9s 8h because it sets me up for serveral straights, flushes and and full houses. I don't play QJT9 unless I have at least a flush draw or I have late position so I can see it cheap.

In low I like to have Ax, A3xx, A4xx with some flushes or where XX is a pair, AAXX, Axxx where all X's are >=10. Short handed all this goes out the window.

Just my two cents although I've only been playing Omaha and Lo for just 5 months. I've played depraved and oil doe and would take their advice in a heartbeat.
 
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My two cents worth - Tue Dec 21, 2004, 06:39 AM
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Dear All:

Before I start with my opinion on this, a couple of caveats.

1. I have been playing for only a year, so I may be completely full of it.

2. I am a winning player in the games described, but just barely, so I may be full of it.

But, since lack of credibility or reliable information has not slowed me down in the past, I will let it all hang out as it were.

Interesting thread - and, I have a controversial opinion designed to start the flaming. Here it is:

YOU ARE ALL RIGHT :!:

And

YOU ARE ALL WRONG
:!: :wink:

Specifically, I believe that Geezer is right in that the two of the single biggest factors to your success, in this order, are:

1. Game selection and,
2. Tight Aggressive Play

I agree totally with him that unless you pick the right game, you are going to have a hard time overcoming the rake and the other players. And, generally speaking, solid, straight forward play is the way to go. I have noticed, that ALL, 100%, of my losing sessions have in one way or another been attributable to playing in games with people that are better than me and/or loose play.

I would only only add that I think (IMO) that he has left out two critical factors out of of his equation, which I would rank ABOVE tight aggressive play, and they are:

1. Seat selection - keeping the aggressive and/or solid players on your right and passive and/or weak players on your left.

2. Stake selection - playing with a sufficient bankroll so that you don't play scared. Though, with this group, that may have gone without saying.

At the same time, I would heartily agree with Depraved, et. al that the super tight strategy that Geezer is promoting is, at least, less than optimal. This is for the following two reasons:

1. Even the clueless have a breaking point. At some point, even the most unobservant mooron is going to notice that every time you turn over a hand it has AA or KK in it. This will cut down on your ability to get paid. And, if there is even one pretty good player at your table, he is going to take your entire stack, because he knows EXACTLY what you have and you have next to not clue what he has. So, if Sklansky is right about his fundamental theorem of poker, then somebody playing against Geezer, if he indeeds plays as he suggests, cannot possibly lose to Geezer because he knows, KNOWS, what he has. Just a thought.

2. AA and KK ds are not the only positive EV cards in the deck. QJT9. as Ciaffone, Slotboom, Sklansky, Zee, and a host of others have shown, is a premium hand. To deny that it is, is to deny that QQ and JJ are, in fact, premium hands with positive EV in HE. It is not factually so. Are they as good as AAKK ds? Nobody is saying that, but they do have positive EV and should be played.

Now, you are ALL wrong in that ALL of you are making the mistake of concentrating on just a few areas of poker. If I may be so bold, I believe from my own limited experience and from a pretty vast amount of reading that a good player is highly integrated, in that, he combines all of the following:

1. Good game selection.
2. Good seat selection.
3. Strong money management.
4. Tight Aggressive Play
5. Good card reading skills
6. Excellent post flop play
7. Tilt repellent in his veins. :?

I think all of us MYSELF MOST ESPECIALLY INCLUDED do ourselves a huge disservice when we concentrate on only one area of our poker playing and hold that out as the end all be all of playing.

Just my two cents worth, do with it what you will.

Cordiallly,

Will May
 
Old
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And another thing! - Wed Dec 22, 2004, 12:56 PM
(#20)
Unregistered
Dear All:

It suddenly, and quite forcefully, dawned on me that this past little post of mine came of stronger than I wanted. It is indeed my opinion, and I think I am right, but I want to reiterate the following:

1. This is MY opinion, based on reading and only a little experience, so please, if you think that I am speaking without enough knowledge, you are probably right.

2. I am just barely a winning player. If a winning player tells you something different, then, by all means, toss any advice that I have given, and if you don't u r stupid.

Last, I really would be interested if you have a contrary opinion.

Cordially,

Will May