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Hitman's blog

/May/2008

EV, and a Limit Mentoring testimonial

By: Hitman @ 15:23 (EDT) / 397 / Comment ( 0 )
With the Limit Mentoring 3 phase series having just launched with Phase 1 on Sunday, I thought I'd share a couple things with you. First, is a post from that new class defining EV. I use the term a lot in limit poker and some players, especially newer ones to poker, aren't familiar with it or what it means. So one of the students in the class asked if I could define EV. I thought this might benefit others as well, and it's an essential concept in poker (particularly in limit), so I'll reprint my answer here... I hope you find it useful: Expected value. Every bet has an expected value, either positive or negative. The expected value is how much you can expect to win (or lose) on average over the long term. Let me give you a basic example. Let's say we decide to flip a coin for money. I offer you 2-1 on your money... if the coin comes up heads, I'll pay you $2, and if it's tails, you'll pay me $1. Since you stand to win twice as much as you lose, on a 50/50 proposition, it's a +EV wager for you. So what is your EV of a flip? Half the time you lose $1: .5 * -$1 = -.50c Half the time you win $2: .5 * +$2 = +$1.00 Your expectation of this wager for 1 flip is the sum of all the possible outcomes, in this case +.50c. That means that every time you make this bet, you're making .50 cents of theoretical profit. This is what we're trying to do in limit poker... make wagers where we expect to get more back in the long term than we risk. That doesn't mean if we do that successfully we will always win... the coin could come up tails 10 times in a row and you'd be stuck $10. But, if I'm dumb enough to keep making this wager an infinite number of times, eventually you'll break me and have all my money. Luck plays a significant role in the short term, but in the long term skill predominates completely... and in limit poker that is the skill to identify and make +EV wagers and avoid -EV ones. [/quote] The second thing I'd like to share is a post that occurred in my recently completed NL Cash Games course. One of the students asked if they should take the limit mentoring, even having no interest in limit, and got a couple of very nice replies. With the author's permission to reprint them publically, I'd like to share them here, as there's still time to get involved in the Limit Phase 1 class for anyone who wants to: "Will Limit Help?" posted by mauigame: I am thinking about taking the Limit course. Not that I want to play Limit all that much, but I am thinking that the more you learn about Texas Hold'em in any form, the better your game gets. I imagine you learn a lot about playing draws, and that some of that would carry over to NL..... Whattya think??? Reply from hackett: I will be honest i hated LHE prior to the 3 phase course Dave ran. Afterwards it enabled me to build a roll and gave me the confidence to progress in other variants of Holdem. Cheryl, your game already appears to be at a very good level, your normal NL game coupled with the 3 phase LHE course, may actually create a monster that i don't think even Dave is ready for. I will actually be re-raking the phase 3 of the course purely for the shadowing sessions that Dave offers, i have found these to be the most valuable time spent during my whole time playing poker. Reply from Big.Ben: I completed Daves Limit Holdem classes about this time last year. In one word OUTSTANDING. It is in-depth and comprehensive. Any serious poker player will benefit from this program. I cannot stress enough how a solid grounding in limit holdem will help you in any other games you play. It will pay for itself very quickly.[/quote] Thanks again Alan and Jim for the kind words, and the permission to reprint them as a testimonial to the course. Registration for Phase 1 will remain open during the entire first week of the class, through Saturday night May 24th. The lesson material up so far is forum based, so one can quickly catch up and have not missed a thing at this point. You can register here: http://www.pokerschoolonline.com/members-only/node/3076?id=106 Thanks, Dave
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