Home / Community / Forum / Poker Education / Texas Hold'Em Tournament Section (MTTs & STTs) /

Not sure if this is the right place to post this question...

Old
Default
Not sure if this is the right place to post this question... - Wed Nov 16, 2011, 10:59 PM
(#1)
crzcanuck2's Avatar
Since: Oct 2010
Posts: 16
BronzeStar
but is this an example of soft playing? It's the only thing that makes sense to me as to why no betting took place. The bubble had burst long before, we were in the money

 
Old
Default
Wed Nov 16, 2011, 11:06 PM
(#2)
JWK24's Avatar
Since: Jun 2010
Posts: 24,802
(Super-Moderator)
BronzeStar
well, the player with Q4 really didn't have anything (although I'd have tried a bet on the turn if I were them). The player with JJ should have been betting for value preflop and basically on every street. They really misplayed the hand bad... and this does look really, really soft!
 
Old
Default
Wed Nov 16, 2011, 11:12 PM
(#3)
crzcanuck2's Avatar
Since: Oct 2010
Posts: 16
BronzeStar
Thank you for answering my questions. There had been some interaction with each other at the table but didn't really think anything of it until this hand. I can't fathom any logical reason why the guy on the button would not bet on any street after the flop.
 
Old
Default
Thu Nov 17, 2011, 01:25 AM
(#4)
JDean's Avatar
Since: Aug 2010
Posts: 3,145
BronzeStar
hmmmmmmm...

this is definately fishy, but whether you can call it "soft play" and a rules violation is quite hard to prove with just the hand. Consider...

There is a perfectly acceptable reality of poker that COULD be at work here, and that is something called "IMPLICIT COLLUSION".

Implicit collusion is an un-spoken "agreement" between 2 players entered into for the purposes of increasing BOTH players' tournament equity.

The most common form of implicit collusion is when 2 or more players call an ALL IN by a short stack, and then check it down.

Both of the players who check down INCREASE their chances of knocking out the all in player by not betting the other live stack off the hand in CASE that person rivers a card to beat the all in. As long as an "agreement" such as this is not pre-arranged, nor spoken of at the table, it is perfectly within the rules; many poker players understand the realities of a "dry pot" situation so such an agreement need not be spoken to be entered into...see?

Each of the players who have a live stack are acting in their OWN "best interest", because both would benefit from the all in player busting. Because both benefit, ad because no spoken agreement was reached to DENY equity to the all in player, there actions would be within the rules.

For your spot, something like that could EASILY have been at work here. It is quite likely that both live stacks recognize the futility of tangling with each other until after you have busted out.

There IS a "question" about the play here that I'd want to have answered if I were you, and that is:

How can 1 player NOT BET top set on the flop, turn, or river?

If this hand had been shown down with the winning player holding something like AK or KJ, then it could easily have been him simply acting extremely "carefully" to avoid playing with the only other stack that could hurt his chances to win. But the JJ hand was THE NUTS until the river card hit. Even if he wanted to slow play the flop, he really probably should have looked to get some value on the turn...

It could easily be that the guy with JJ is just a BAD passive type player though, and he made a huge "mistake"...

Since just looking at the hand cannot really determine if this is soft play of an illegal sort, or whether it is a matter of a legal "implicit collusion" agreement, I would submit this to support@pokerstars.com. Security has the ability to check ALL the hands these 2 players have played throughout the event, and also the ability to check any OTHER games these 2 might have played together. Since the only way to reveal if this IS illegal soft play is to establish some sort of "relationship" between these players, it is going to be up to Security to check into the matter.

So I'd mail that hand in ASAP.

Last edited by JDean; Thu Nov 17, 2011 at 01:27 AM..
 
Old
Default
Thu Nov 17, 2011, 02:17 AM
(#5)
boobylops's Avatar
Since: Jun 2010
Posts: 232
BronzeStar
Looked at another way this hand "could" have gone through the following process;.......

JJ thinks he will slow play his hand but the flop shows a potential draw to broadway and he decides to check and see what happens, the ace on the river giving him even more reason to worry.

The other player meanwhile, not getting any tell, just checks along in the hope of hitting something.

Possibly a bit basic but I know I have played hands like this before.
 
Old
Default
Thu Nov 17, 2011, 07:29 AM
(#6)
crzcanuck2's Avatar
Since: Oct 2010
Posts: 16
BronzeStar
It is possible that the player on the button played the hand very badly but prior to it just being three of us at the table, the two of them (especially the one on the button) were playing fairly aggressively. That's why this caught my attention.

If I was all in and the hand got checked down, I would understand but that wasn't the case.

I sent in the hand to support and will see what they say.

Thanks again to all who responded
 
Old
Default
Thu Nov 17, 2011, 08:32 AM
(#7)
EdinFreeMan's Avatar
Since: Feb 2010
Posts: 4,540
When you say you are already ITM, it might be useful to know where exactly you were ITM, and what type of tourney this was.

If you are the last 3 players left I could totally understand the JJ slowplaying a set on a straight and flush heavy board. In that situation, with a smallish chip lead over the 2nd stack, but about 8x your stack I would be very risk averse until you had busted, so would be wary of QK or flush draws post flop. If all those potential hands missed I would have bet the river with top set, but the A (or a K) on the river would kill off any intention to bet there.

I would give them the benefit of the doubt and put it down to implicit collusion or simply risk averse play. No harm in getting it checked out by support though. I send in anything suspicious, not just the obvious blatant rule breaking, and occassionally stuff like this does turn out to be premeditated and harmful collusion, but thankfully not too often in my experience.

Good luck

Ed from Edinburgh - EdinFreeMan
 
Old
Default
Thu Nov 17, 2011, 12:50 PM
(#8)
mtnestegg's Avatar
Since: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,336
And room will be along shortly to tell you this should be in the general forum...
 
Old
Default
Thu Nov 17, 2011, 01:39 PM
(#9)
!!!111Dan's Avatar
Since: Jul 2010
Posts: 3,290
It could go in a couple places, but don't egg him on.

It could be in hand analysis as it is asking for an analysis of a hand...not in how it was played, but still an analysis none the less.
It could also be in be in the Pokerstars support forum as it is a question about a rule at the tables.
It could be a beginner's question.

The forums have descriptions in the index above their headings. Most people are realizing that and doing their best. The staff appreciates it.


I do suggest, as always, that members use the Last Posts tab until they've looked through all of them, and then maybe their subscriptions if it's been a while since they've been on. Then finally, search individual forums they're interested in, in case something IS moved, you WILL find it.

Thanks again everyone.


now...back to it...this type of thing should always be reported to support..so well done.

~~

Last edited by !!!111Dan; Thu Nov 17, 2011 at 01:43 PM.. Reason: spelling
 
Old
Default
Thu Nov 17, 2011, 06:03 PM
(#10)
JDean's Avatar
Since: Aug 2010
Posts: 3,145
BronzeStar
Quote:
Originally Posted by crzcanuck2 View Post
It is possible that the player on the button played the hand very badly but prior to it just being three of us at the table, the two of them (especially the one on the button) were playing fairly aggressively. That's why this caught my attention.

If I was all in and the hand got checked down, I would understand but that wasn't the case.

I sent in the hand to support and will see what they say.

Thanks again to all who responded
You gotta consider this too crzcanuck2:

If the guy with the set is scared the OTHER big stack will not FOLD a draw here is he bets, or if he is scared that the other big stack might BLUFF HARD on any "scary" river card, he may not want to put chips out there that he might LOSE. This is "bad poker", but then stupidity is not against the rules (thank goodness ).

As it stands, you are likely to make a stand some time pretty soon, and since you cannot wait for a "monster" to make a stand, a check down like this COULD be a "mind game" on you to make you notice clearly that NEITHER of your opponents are going to risk chips. That would (probably) serve to WIDEN your shove range, since you have little chance of seeing one of them bust to move you to 2nd place money, see?

Since the other 2 will get heads up after you bust with virtually EVEN stacks, they may BOTH see benefit to themselves of "locking down" to avoid any mistakes that could take them off of heads up parity after you are gone. I know the LAST thing I'd want to do as one of the big stacks here is lose about 1/3rd to 1/2 of my chips to the OTHER big stack, and go to HU play as maybe a 2 to 1 chip dog (ok, the real "last thing" Id want to do is bust BEFORE your tiny stack, but chipping up the other big stack is close...).

So there are definately REASONS to soft play here for that big stack, and those reasons might not be against the rules. Support should be getting back to you soon to let you know if there is any relationship between these guys which took this out of the realm of "dumb, overly careful move" and into a rules violation.
 
Old
Default
Thu Nov 17, 2011, 08:55 PM
(#11)
crzcanuck2's Avatar
Since: Oct 2010
Posts: 16
BronzeStar
Thank you everyone who took the time to respond, gave some other points of view to consider. Support said they'd get back to me within the next 7-10 days as they investigate the matter, will let you know what happens.

For the person who asked about where in the tournament we were, the bubble burst at 56 players left. I was knocked out the next hand finishing 27th so not near the final table bubble either.

Thanks again!
 
Old
Default
Thu Nov 17, 2011, 09:04 PM
(#12)
JDean's Avatar
Since: Aug 2010
Posts: 3,145
BronzeStar
Quote:
Originally Posted by crzcanuck2 View Post
Thank you everyone who took the time to respond, gave some other points of view to consider. Support said they'd get back to me within the next 7-10 days as they investigate the matter, will let you know what happens.

For the person who asked about where in the tournament we were, the bubble burst at 56 players left. I was knocked out the next hand finishing 27th so not near the final table bubble either.

Thanks again!
AH!

Then this hand really makes no sense.

If you are not at a deep pay out point, and you are trying to climb to that deep point, these are EXACTLY the sorts of situations the guy with a set CANNOT pass up value. I mean if he STACKS the other big stack, he makes a huge chip up. That leads to a run deep a lot more often than not.

Keeping you around (or keeping the other big stack around) at the table doesn't benefit him at all either, because there is no one ELSE here he can get chips from except the other big stack. If there were a 4th person, someone on like a 15k or 20k stack, keeping your table intact COULD make some sense, as busting someone off the table may lead to table consolidation, and the loss of the "target stack" of 15k, see?

This hand seems fishier and fishier the more you describe it, and I'm very glad you reported it.
 
Old
Default
Thu Nov 17, 2011, 09:36 PM
(#13)
EdinFreeMan's Avatar
Since: Feb 2010
Posts: 4,540
Quote:
Originally Posted by crzcanuck2 View Post

For the person who asked about where in the tournament we were, the bubble burst at 56 players left. I was knocked out the next hand finishing 27th so not near the final table bubble either.

Thanks again!
I was that person - and as JDean says this really makes a lot of difference. If you were the last 3 players, waiting for you to exit to get HU makes some sense. At the final table bubble it might just be understandable, though probably incorrect play. Where you were, only about half way through the money spots it makes NO sense, for all the reasons JDean has put down.

I would see this as an IDEAL position to milk the other big stack if they are willing to come along. I would be betting at least two streets post flop, and depending how many chips I could get into the pot (and keep them in) I would really want to be all in on the river, even with the ace hitting. Only 2 hands beating us and I would discount AA, so if they turn up the KQ nut straight too bad, I'd be committing to the hand and taking that risk. If they have Ax, especially with their x on the board, or any two pairs or a lower set they are gonna get stacked.

Await the verdict from support with bated breath. If they come out clean amend your notes to question the skill strength of this player.

Good luck

Ed from Edinburgh - EdinFreeMan

Last edited by EdinFreeMan; Thu Nov 17, 2011 at 09:40 PM..
 
Old
Default
Thu Nov 17, 2011, 09:48 PM
(#14)
JDean's Avatar
Since: Aug 2010
Posts: 3,145
BronzeStar
As a note:

If the last card had come a total BLANK (it filled no flushes or straights), per TDA rules checking the NUT HAND on the river is a rules violation in and of itself, not matter the reason. A violation of this rule can include Dis-qualification as a possible penalty.

(note: Stars does not follow TDA rules exactly, but their's are close. I am not sure a similar rule is in Star's ToS though)

Darvin Moon, the 2010 runner up in the ME got a 10 minute penalty for doing jsut that at a recent event (it may have been the 2011 ME or a sub event, I do not remember).

In that hand, Moon checked the nut flush on the river on an un-paired board, with the intent of forcing his opponent to showdown his hand. In this case, he was not DQ'ed because his expressed intent was to pass up what was possibly SMALL VALUE at the early stages of an MTT, in order to gain info he might use later.

That rule could not be applied here, because the Guy with JJ had 2nd set on the river and straights had gotten there, so he was no longer on a nut hand.

BUT...

the fact such a rule exists serves to point out how RARE it is that someone would actually check the nut hand TWICE in the face of potential suck outs hands...

...had he held quads, fine; I check that and PRAY a straight or a flush gets there so I can get good value, but when a set is the nuts there are almost always cards that could come to beat it.

Bad Bad BAD decisions here at the least, and very suspicious actions too...

Last edited by JDean; Thu Nov 17, 2011 at 09:51 PM..
 
Old
Default
Fri Nov 25, 2011, 08:18 AM
(#15)
crzcanuck2's Avatar
Since: Oct 2010
Posts: 16
BronzeStar
Got my response from support, thanks to all who offered thoughts/advice

Quote:
Hello xxxxxxx,

Thank you once more for your report and apologies if there was any delay in bringing this case to a close. This particular case was quite involved and more time than usual was required for a proper review.

Our review of 'SFeSS' and 'Garik7456' is now complete. We confirmed a relationship and found that they did go easy on one another (known as soft play) on occasion. This is a violation of our tournament rule #20 as posted at:

http://www.pokerstars.com/poker/tournaments/rules/

We have the advantage of being able to replay the games with all cards exposed. We carefully reviewed all events in which at least one of the two finished in the money. As a result of our findings, players who were likely harmed by the unfair play have been advanced and have received credits consistent with their new finish position at the expense of the colluders.

While we appreciate your vigilance in bringing this case to light, unfortunately we have been unable to offer you compensation in this case as you finished in the money and did not advance in money as result of their disqualifications.

It is not uncommon to find that players are not aware of the seriousness of such action in tournament play. The overall review, which included requests for explanations from the players and consideration of all account information, led us to conclude that their action was not malicious. Therefore they will be allowed to continue playing on the site. That said, we did take action to see that they do not play in the same Sit & Go Tournaments in the future, or at the same cash game table for that matter.

The integrity of the games at PokerStars is of paramount importance to us and we will not abide unfair play in our games. We work hard to police our games to assure our players of a fair, secure place to play. In the rare cases where collusion has actually occurred, we make sure that any players affected are compensated appropriately.Your vigilance in noticing the situation and reporting your concerns are appreciated. Please do not hesitate to let us know anytime you have questions or concerns.

Regards,

Alexander L
PokerStars Game Security Team
 
Old
Default
Fri Nov 25, 2011, 08:39 AM
(#16)
XxTiberxX's Avatar
Since: Sep 2011
Posts: 374
Justice has been served
 
Old
Default
Fri Nov 25, 2011, 10:48 AM
(#17)
JWK24's Avatar
Since: Jun 2010
Posts: 24,802
(Super-Moderator)
BronzeStar
+1
 

Getting PokerStars is easy: download and install the PokerStars game software, create your free player account, and validate your email address. Clicking on the download poker button will lead to the installation of compatible poker software on your PC of 51.7 MB, which will enable you to register and play poker on the PokerStars platform. To uninstall PokerStars use the Windows uninstaller: click Start > Control Panel and then select Add or Remove programs > Select PokerStars and click Uninstall or Remove.

Copyright (c) PokerSchoolOnline.com. All rights reserved, Rational Group, Douglas Bay Complex, King Edward Road, Onchan, Isle of Man, IM3 1DZ. You can email us on support@pokerschoolonline.com