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Can the average person really win in poker???

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Can the average person really win in poker??? - Wed Jan 18, 2012, 05:51 AM
(#1)
C-mac687's Avatar
Since: Oct 2011
Posts: 70
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So I started doing some math and after some calculating, it hit me that making any money is almost impossible which has me wondering if I should keep playing.

I always play the same tournament because part of my strategy is by playing the same tournament all the time, I'll get a good feel for it.

Anyway, I play a 3.50 sit n go that has 2 tables of 6 people.(no limit hold'em)

For every 10 tournaments I play it cost me 35.00
Out of those 10 touraments I have to finish 3rd in at least 5 of them which gets me to barely over even.(3rd place pays 7.50. 7.50x5=37.50 so that gives me a profit 2.50...lol.
To finish ITM 5 out of those 10 tournaments, I have to be better/luckier then 9 of the other players each time because only the top 3 pay. Most of the players are pretty good. Maybe 1 or 2 fish but rest are decent players.

You put all that together and it seems like a winless fight.

Does this not seem like very imporbable odds?

It really got me thinking if there's any point in playing if I really want to make a profit.

Last edited by C-mac687; Wed Jan 18, 2012 at 05:54 AM..
 
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Wed Jan 18, 2012, 07:42 AM
(#2)
taomage's Avatar
Since: Sep 2010
Posts: 134
Well now you are only speaking about 3rd places, but the first place gives you a prize of $18,79, thats more than 5 buy-ins.

So lets say as average result of 10 tournaments:

1 win = 18,79
1 runner up= 11,26
2, 3rd places= 16.02

=18.79+11.26+16.02= $46.07 with buy-ins of $35,00 your making $11,07 profit with only 4 itm.

You see where I am going, a good place makes up for many bad places. Its all about consistency and yes too reach that you indeed have to be better than other players (that is in life often a requirement to win) or be very lucky (it's your choice), if you think you aren't then you might wanna consider another kind of SnG or a lower buy in where you might find some less skilled players.

Well I hope you understand my point of view.

Tao
 
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Wed Jan 18, 2012, 07:44 AM
(#3)
Feskprins's Avatar
Since: May 2011
Posts: 450
The avarage person won't be playing profitable poker, but who says that you can't improve? That you're 50% ITM and still breakeven tells me that you tend to mincash a lot. Why do you mincash? Have you tried other tournament structures? Have you analyzed your play to see what's holding you back? Are you using a HUD or at least a tracking software? If not, I strongly recommend you to get one.

I've seen tons of players that are breakeven and it's usually (and mainly) due to three things. Either because they don't focus enough on gathering reads and ranging opponents and focus too much on their own cards. The second one is that they don't know their push/fold poker and either push too soon with marginal holdings or fold too much because they are afraid to bust without making the money. The third is that they make that one mistake when they stack off because they feel that they "deserve" to win that hand, or simply refuse to let it go for various reasons. I promise you that if you pay more attention to these things, you'll see a huge improvement in your winrate!
 
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Wed Jan 18, 2012, 08:35 AM
(#4)
holdemace486's Avatar
Since: Nov 2011
Posts: 1,760
Quote:
Originally Posted by C-mac687 View Post
So I started doing some math and after some calculating, it hit me that making any money is almost impossible which has me wondering if I should keep playing.

I always play the same tournament because part of my strategy is by playing the same tournament all the time, I'll get a good feel for it.

Anyway, I play a 3.50 sit n go that has 2 tables of 6 people.(no limit hold'em)

For every 10 tournaments I play it cost me 35.00
Out of those 10 touraments I have to finish 3rd in at least 5 of them which gets me to barely over even.(3rd place pays 7.50. 7.50x5=37.50 so that gives me a profit 2.50...lol.
To finish ITM 5 out of those 10 tournaments, I have to be better/luckier then 9 of the other players each time because only the top 3 pay. Most of the players are pretty good. Maybe 1 or 2 fish but rest are decent players.

You put all that together and it seems like a winless fight.

Does this not seem like very imporbable odds?

It really got me thinking if there's any point in playing if I really want to make a profit.
hi m8t a similar post to i did on 45ppl 25c sng and i too no matter how hard i tried could only stay about even,
i looked at my game and no offence to you i have never played you but i looked at my game and realised i got no chance lol theres sharks at all levels with far superior skills,and then lucky donks,then variance,and so on.
I read some where an artical on poker and according to this article as a good player one reload would be enough to play poker for ever and stay even,but yes i agree the point is to make more money to play at higher levels,
On reflection of this i come up with a post about how to beat the variance etc,and my judgement was not to play as much poker,wish i could stick to this myself,play more and eventually its inevetable that you will lose somewhere along the line,where as a hit and miss approach would work best,e.g 1 tourney every other day instead of continued play,the same as roulette really bet every go and you will lose play every other hand as such and you can avoid the bad luck sometimes,e.g you play 1 today and win,tommorrow may may not be a winning day for you so if you hit and miss you might get lucky and be playing on the winning day,may sound a load of garbage,but if u think about it that is one way of cutting the odds down of the variance.
hope this helps you some way ,i too have the same dilemas and am just told im rubbish lol,but in fact my reason i lose is by playing to much and will always lose because of this,
 
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Wed Jan 18, 2012, 08:58 AM
(#5)
sable60's Avatar
Since: Sep 2011
Posts: 36
I agree with you Holdemace486 if you play every day you will have winning days and loosing day, but if you play every other day you could have 2 maybe 3 wins in a row. Less games better odds. Think of it like the lottery the more tickets sold the greater the odds of wining are.
 
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Wed Jan 18, 2012, 10:08 AM
(#6)
RockerguyAA's Avatar
Since: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,089
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By definition, an average poker player will lose. With no skill advantage and luck being neutral in the long term, you are left with rake. A player who is purely average will lose is profits the exact amount of rake paid after playing a very long time(in theory).

C-mac,

Your not going to show a whole lot of profit/hour playing $3.50 SNGs. You will need to play A LOT of games to see substantial variation in your bankroll.
 
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Wed Jan 18, 2012, 10:39 AM
(#7)
Darkman61's Avatar
Since: Jan 2010
Posts: 2,225
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As Rocker said, if you truly are "average" in the games you play you will lose the equivalent of the rake in the long run.

You need to be good to win. Very good. I recently saw it suggested that 90% of players are losers in the long term. Personally I think that figure's a little high, but I'm quite willing to believe it's in excess of 80%.
 
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Wed Jan 18, 2012, 11:42 AM
(#8)
whu1895's Avatar
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 110
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maybe bring down your buy in level for wee while ,a week or so too c how u get on ,smash said level then try again ,thats what i would do ,so gl in what u decide too do all the best
 
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Wed Jan 18, 2012, 11:49 AM
(#9)
Grade b's Avatar
Since: Jun 2010
Posts: 3,604
If you feel you can't make a profit at that game/level then for sure don't play come down a level to were you can beat the game on a regular basis.

Grade b


I am always ready to learn although I do not always like being taught. ~Winston Churchill

13 Time Bracelet Winner


 
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Wed Jan 18, 2012, 11:51 AM
(#10)
Feskprins's Avatar
Since: May 2011
Posts: 450
Also watch Spacegravy's videos on STTs. To quote 19honu42: "This guy is making millions of dollars per year, and he's telling you how to do it, so why would I go against his recommendations"? So if he tells you to shove with AQ in a certain situation, don't shove with AJ.
 
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Wed Jan 18, 2012, 11:54 AM
(#11)
akisno's Avatar
Since: Oct 2010
Posts: 41
The smaller the field of players the better you have to be in order to gain profit.
And a recent trend due to that is 9 and 18 mans pros hitting the 45 and 180 mans tourneys.

And if you check stats on good regs you will see that their roi - profit is getting smaller by the years.
Quote:
As Rocker said, if you truly are "average" in the games you play you will lose the equivalent of the rake in the long run.

You need to be good to win. Very good. I recently saw it suggested that 90% of players are losers in the long term. Personally I think that figure's a little high, but I'm quite willing to believe it's in excess of 80%.
The real figure is higher. But that doesn't sound as good advert...
 
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Wed Jan 18, 2012, 12:14 PM
(#12)
whu1895's Avatar
Since: Apr 2011
Posts: 110
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Feskprins View Post
Also watch Spacegravy's videos on STTs. To quote 19honu42: "This guy is making millions of dollars per year, and he's telling you how to do it, so why would I go against his recommendations"? So if he tells you to shove with AQ in a certain situation, don't shove with AJ.
yup , ilove that shove chart made a great difference 2 how i play ,no more gettin blinded out its ohhhhh i can shove this ,where as last year wouldnt even of went near the hand ,loads too learn n then some ,gl all the best
 
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Wed Jan 18, 2012, 12:24 PM
(#13)
EdinFreeMan's Avatar
Since: Feb 2010
Posts: 4,540
I think an average player CAN be profitable. If they are 'average' of all the players on (say) Pokerstars at any given level. But probably only at the cash tables.

Then it is all about game/table/opponent selection.

I suspect I am well below average skill overall for a poker player. But if I play 6Max $0.01/$0.02NLHE I am probably close to the average at that level. Then I can usually spot the difference between the better players and the real fish, so it is possible to avoid the strong players simply by not getting involved in hands they enter (unless you have the real nuts). If I think most of the players at a table are better than me I simply leave to find another table, if I think I am stronger than most I will stay as long as possible.

I think it is harder for an average player to be profitable at sitngos, STT & MTTs, even at the micro levels, especially in turbos, because the variance is so high and you cannot choose your table.

Just keep learning at PSO and hopefully we will all become above average.

Good luck

Ed from Edinburgh - EdinFreeMan
 
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Wed Jan 18, 2012, 12:32 PM
(#14)
JDean's Avatar
Since: Aug 2010
Posts: 3,145
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darkman61 View Post
As Rocker said, if you truly are "average" in the games you play you will lose the equivalent of the rake in the long run.

You need to be good to win. Very good. I recently saw it suggested that 90% of players are losers in the long term. Personally I think that figure's a little high, but I'm quite willing to believe it's in excess of 80%.
It is actually closer to something like only 5% to 8% of players are long term winners Dman...

The fact is, most people really do not know HOW to win long term.

GAME SELECTION

This is probably the biggest factor in someone being a long term winning player, maybe even bigger than actual playing skill. Consider...

When I was in high school, my friends and I used to play a weekly 25c/50c 7 stud game with a ton of wild cards. I was a BIG long term winner in that game even though about the only thing I "knew" about poker at that time was: bet and raise big when you have 3 wild cards, and only call if you don't!

I am being serious, I NEVER FOLDED, and was still a long big long term winner...

I was not a long term winner in that game because I was luckier than anyone else. Why I was a long term winner is simple: the guys I was playing with did not even know the one thing I knew.

They would bet or call with their great hands, would never check raise or raise to get extra bets into the pot, so I had a huge advantage knowing only 1 tiny thing about poker. The result of that was the pots I would WIN were far larger than the pots I lost, so the money tended to migrate toward me. Had anyone else in the game even folded once in a while when I check/raised, my advantage would have disappeared and we would have all been back on equal footing. Lucky for me, no one ever learned that!

(I am 44 now, and they STILL haven't learned! I just took down $74 playing 25c/50c limit stud against my high school buddies over new year's eve! )

WHY PLAYERS LOSE

The whole point of the ramble above is that if you have an advantage against opponents, and that advantage is not off-set by things they know or do, you can WIN long term and only "bad luck" will stop you from winning in the short term. Even BAD players can find other players who are worse, and that alone can be good enough to make you a long term winner in extreme circumstances.

Once you get above the kitchen table poker level though, knowing just a little bit more than opponents is no longer enough to ensure you are a long term winner. The truth of the matter is, poker is not like Chess, where the better player should always win. It is more like the child's game "rock - paper - scissors". As I'm sure we all know, paper beats rock, rock beats scissors, and scissors beat paper, right?

Let's imagine for a second that there are 100 "poker skills" that you must master to be a "perfect player".

If poker were like chess, if you have mastered 60 of these skills, and you play only against opponents who have mastered 59 of the skills or less, that should be enough to win, right? You are "better" than any of your opponents.

in reality, competition between poker "skills" is a lot more like rock - paper- scissors though, insofar as the skills you have mastered may NOT be useful against the skills your opponent has mastered (your "rock" to his "paper"). So even though you might know MORE, you will probably lose to that opponent over and over, and until you select a different game with opponents who will likely lose to YOUR skills, you will be a long term loser.

So overall, it is really not bad luck that always keeps people from being long term winners, and it is really not a lack of skill that keeps them from winning. In large part it is about who they choose to play AGAINST that keeps them from being long term winners.


Double Bracelet Winner
 
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Thu Jan 19, 2012, 01:33 AM
(#15)
C-mac687's Avatar
Since: Oct 2011
Posts: 70
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Hey guys,

Thanks to all those who replied and gave input.

, Some of you suggested I drop down a level until I can crush those games ect...

The funny thing is, about a week and a half ago, I actually went up a buy-in level cause I wanted to try an expeiriment. I was getting fustrated with losing good hands to people making bad calls on me and winning. For example I was rasing hard with pocket KK, getting called only to some donk calling me K, 8 OS and hitting two pair on the flop.

Anyway, I thought if I went up a level, there would less donk's calling me with week hands and getting lucky. So far I'm having more success in the higher buy-in tourney's.

Also, not sure if I'm an average player ,above average, or what. My bankroll is still on the + side since my initial deposit so I must be doing somethng right.

My point was that my goal was to try win about $100.00 a week and so far that's not happening so I'm trying figure out if it s worth all the time and effort.

Last edited by C-mac687; Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 05:55 AM..
 
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Thu Jan 19, 2012, 06:20 PM
(#16)
shirshot's Avatar
Since: Jul 2010
Posts: 665
Quote:
Originally Posted by C-mac687 View Post
Hey guys,

Thanks to all those who replied and gave input.

, Some of you suggested I drop down a level until I can crush those games ect...

The funny thing is, about a week and a half ago, I actually went up a buy-in level cause I wanted to try an expeiriment. I was getting fustrated with losing good hands to people making bad calls on me and winning. For example I was rasing hard with pocket KK, getting called only to some donk calling me K, 8 OS and hitting two pair on the flop.Anyway, I thought if I went up a level, there would less donk's calling me with week hands and getting lucky. So far I'm having more success in the higher buy-in tourney's.

Also, not sure if I'm an average player ,above average, or what. My bankroll is still on the + side since my initial deposit so I must be doing somethng right.

My point was that my goal was to try win about $100.00 a week and so far that's not happening so I'm trying figure out if it s worth all the time and effort.
Which two pair has you beat?
 
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Thu Jan 19, 2012, 09:10 PM
(#17)
C-mac687's Avatar
Since: Oct 2011
Posts: 70
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Yeah sorry, that example didn't make sense. I think what happened is I raised AA 1/3 my stack and the flop didn't look very coordinated so I shoved and she was holding K,8 OS which was on the board and knocked me out. It was like the first or second hand of the tourney too.
 
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Fri Jan 20, 2012, 12:22 AM
(#18)
19honu62's Avatar
Since: Jul 2010
Posts: 1,770
C-mac, alot of good thoughts above and i will add 1 more. How much time are you studying? What plans do you hav ein place to make that $100 a week or do you just say oh I wanna make $100 a week. Are you removing the leaks from your game?
It's about setting goals that are realistic and good expectation for success and if you are making the same mistakes over and over agin you will remain an average player. Honestly it takes hard work and the ability to check your ego at the door.
The stats are true btw that 90% of online players are losing players! Go to poker pro labs.com and look up the players at your table and see how much money they have lost in the last 360 days!

Giddy Up!

Last edited by 19honu62; Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 04:20 PM..
 
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Sat Jan 21, 2012, 11:25 AM
(#19)
C-mac687's Avatar
Since: Oct 2011
Posts: 70
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Yeah Im going to go back to the drawing baord I think. I still think I must doing some things right if my bankroll is on the + side considering 90% of the other players shouldn't have + bankroll.

I'm going to do a bit more studying and try to filter out the leaks I might have in my game.
 
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Tue Jan 24, 2012, 04:36 PM
(#20)
C-mac687's Avatar
Since: Oct 2011
Posts: 70
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Hey 19honu62,

Have you used any of the poker tracking tools? Are they free? Are they any good?

I've made a little spread sheet to track down my finish's and what I was holding and what I got knocked out of the tournament with to see if that can help me in my decision making.
 

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