Trapping myself in a bloated pot

TooncesTDCTooncesTDC Red Chipper Posts: 34 ✭✭
edited December 2018 in Tournament Poker Hands
It's the first round of a medium-size tournament at the local casino. Buy-in is 8000 chips for $80. I have 7900 chips and the blinds are 25-50.

I am going to blow this hand big time. But I need to understand where the mistakes are and how big each one is.

I have As Kh in HJ with 7900. Villain directly to my right has 6900 and has been playing loose.

UTG calls. UTG +1 raises to 250. Villain cold-calls. I raise to 1000. I think this is fine...but correct me if it isn't. All 3 call.

4075 pot. 1.75 SPR. Pot is 9d 2h 7h.

Checked to me. I bet 1000. My thinking to C-bet is that it's a dry-ish board, so top 2 overcards with the Kh for the 2nd nut backdoor puts it in the top 70% (I'm now wondering if that's true, given my limited range for 3-betting...am I not C-betting most of my AK?). My bet size is so low because of the low SPR, combined with a dry-ish board that doesn't seem to connect with a lot of their range and also, I lowered it because the video says to lower bet sizes with 4-way action.

UTG and UTG +1 fold. The cold caller raises me to 2500. I think and finally call.

This raise seems pretty low to me. Given his position, he's probably in the best spot to try to bluff me off of this hand. He can easily be semi-bluffing on this flop. Given that i have 2 overs and the backdoor flush and position and getting 5:1 on my call, I chose to call. I think this is a mistake in retrospect and want to understand why.

Pot is 9075. Turn is a blank 4. Villain goes all in for 3300. I'm getting about 3.7:1 on my call which really is the thing that sways me to call. At the time, I was thinking that 6 probable outs on that board plus the odds that he is barrelling with hearts or JTs or T8s add up to at least 22% equity. I think this is a horrible call in retrospect, and my real equity may actually be about 10% here, given the chance that he flopped a set or pair with an Ace.

Comments

  • pokerdj4pokerdj4 NYRed Chipper Posts: 26 ✭✭
    Pre: Either folding or raising is fine. Folding is okay because UTG called and UTG +1 opened which correlates to a strong hand and theres another caller. Raising can have UTG +1 fold some of these opens but once UTG calls, and UTG +1 calls Villain will likely call as well.

    Flop: I wouldn’t bet. Pocket pairs like to call pre flop in these situations and I wouldn’t be surprised if someone flopped a set and decided to slow play. I would check down and likely even check turn and river unless I improved. Since you decided to bet and were raised the cold caller is basically telling you I have sets or an over pair please call this small raise. To me, this is a fold, not a call. Remember, you cannot win the tournament this early on, you need to survive now and look for better spots later. Sure you are getting good odds to call, however, his raise is signifying a lot of strength and we are basically hoping to catch runner runner for a flush but even if he has some sets, some hearts are not good outs for us like the 4h or 9h.
  • kageykagey Red Chipper, KINGOFTAGS Posts: 2,241 ✭✭✭✭✭
    nice post with good info...
    lots of stuff we can work with, but I've got more questions than answers here...
    TooncesTDC wrote: »
    I have As Kh in HJ with 7900. Villain directly to my right has 6900 and has been playing loose.

    UTG calls. UTG +1 raises to 250. Villain cold-calls. I raise to 1000. I think this is fine...
    explain why this is "fine"
    what was the point of your raise?
    what were you trying to accomplish with your raise size?
    now knowing that all 3 call, how would you have played this differently?
    TooncesTDC wrote: »
    All 3 call.

    4075 pot. 1.75 SPR. Pot is 9d 2h 7h.

    Checked to me. I bet 1000. My thinking to C-bet is that it's a dry-ish board, so top 2 overcards with the Kh for the 2nd nut backdoor puts it in the top 70%...

    you've got 6 outs, maybe 7 if you want to consider a BD flush... with the SECOND nut flush.
    before you put % behind YOUR hand, what hands do you think call a 3-bet pre?
    what hands do you think continue when you bet ¼ pot?
    if you were a V, what hands would you call getting 5:1 on your money?
    again,what's the purpose of your bet?
    how do you think this bet size looks to your opponents?

    btw, a board where straights and flushes can be made on the very next card should probably not be classified as "dry-ish" boards.
    TooncesTDC wrote: »
    UTG and UTG +1 fold. The cold caller raises me to 2500. I think and finally call.

    why are we calling?
    what hands are we beating here?
    what's the SPR look like after we call?
    what do we think V is going to do on the turn?
  • TheGameKatTheGameKat Posts: 1,757 -
    In a tournament I flat pre and don't put another chip in the pot.
    Moderation In Moderation
  • persuadeopersuadeo Red Chipper, Table Captain Posts: 3,821 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Pay attention to KG's post, pay more attention to your stack, and if you can, get some coaching before the PCA. Your hands posted so far suggest you need some real work on your game.
  • TheGameKatTheGameKat Posts: 1,757 -
    kagey wrote: »

    btw, a board where straights and flushes can be made on the very next card should probably not be classified as "dry-ish" boards.

    I'm not sure how useful this is, but out of curiosity I gave all 3 villains a 20% range and plugged in our hand and that board into Equilab. Based on that alone, we're not getting all 3 to fold on this flop IMO.
    Moderation In Moderation
  • TooncesTDCTooncesTDC Red Chipper Posts: 34 ✭✭
    Thank you for such a detailed response
    kagey wrote: »
    nice post with good info...
    lots of stuff we can work with, but I've got more questions than answers here...
    TooncesTDC wrote: »
    I have As Kh in HJ with 7900. Villain directly to my right has 6900 and has been playing loose.

    UTG calls. UTG +1 raises to 250. Villain cold-calls. I raise to 1000. I think this is fine...
    explain why this is "fine"
    what was the point of your raise?
    what were you trying to accomplish with your raise size?

    I didn't think this was controversial at the time of posting. I would think that given the limping and cold-calling standards of the typical local tournament player, limper is probably PFR 6%-VPIP 33+%. A typical raiser is PFR 12%, cold caller is usually 3-betting the top 2-3% and cold-calling maybe 20% (bayesian inferences). Against those ranges, I have about 35% equity plus position 4 ways. If the limper drops, I'm at 45% 3-way. So, I want to build the pot in case I win. Also, I'm squeezing UTG+1 and Villian, so I have significant fold equity. And I have initiative on whoever stays in. The downside is that someone could go over the top with AA or KK, but the only player with a reasonable probability of playing that way is UTG+1, and it seems like a small enough chance (given my AK, only 6 combos).

    As for the bet size, I wanted to make a standard squeeze raise size, which I thought was 3x + 1x for each limper. Given that UTG called for only 50, not 250, I figured the math meant not to increase the bet for him. I can see an argument for 1250.
    now knowing that all 3 call, how would you have played this differently?
    I would think this is a good spot for me, EV wise. It's certainly worth more EV than if the pot was only 1075. It means that realistically, I probably need to connect with the flop or turn to realize that equity, which argues to check through the flop, but it also felt like each of the players still have a lot of air on this flop.

    TooncesTDC wrote: »
    All 3 call.

    4075 pot. 1.75 SPR. Pot is 9d 2h 7h.

    Checked to me. I bet 1000. My thinking to C-bet is that it's a dry-ish board, so top 2 overcards with the Kh for the 2nd nut backdoor puts it in the top 70%...
    you've got 6 outs, maybe 7 if you want to consider a BD flush... with the SECOND nut flush.
    before you put % behind YOUR hand, what hands do you think call a 3-bet pre?
    I would have guessed that my equity was 15-20%. Equilab has me at 20.5%
    UTG is hard to get into the mind of cause I don't limp-open and most of the limp opens aren't worth flatting 3 bets. I would expect a normal UTG to fold, but given that he calls, I would expect him to stay with any hand that he likes 3-way, like 88-22, Axs, KJs, QJs, JTs, T9s, AQ-AJ, KQ
    UTG +1 calls the top 75% of his range and 4-bets AA or KK, so that's QQ-77, AKs-A9s, KQs-KJs, QJs, JTs, AQ-AJ, KQ,
    Cold Caller calls the top 60% of his range suitible for multiway, so JJ-77, AQs-A5s,KQs,K9s, QJs-Q9s, JTs, AQ-AJ, KQ

    what hands do you think continue when you bet ¼ pot?
    Any pair or set, any flush draw, JTs, some people may call once with overcards, especially with the Ah

    if you were a V, what hands would you call getting 5:1 on your money? I'd probably have to fold most of my air, but I might bluff if I thought he had AK. I might call or raise with a flush draw, depending on how gutsy I felt about risking my tournament life. But I probably stay in if I caught the flop at all.
    again,what's the purpose of your bet?
    how do you think this bet size looks to your opponents?
    At the time, I'm hoping to win it here, or at least deny equity if I am ahead on this board but they have overcards that could pair on the turn and river.
    I think it looks quite weak. However, I've been trying to lower my bet size based on new stuff I'm reading. I know we should drop average bet size if multiway and we should drop average bet size with a 3-way pot.
    btw, a board where straights and flushes can be made on the very next card should probably not be classified as "dry-ish" boards.
    My thought was while there is a 2 flush, I didn't think anyone's range got into the OESD area. And 972 wasn't as likely to pair them. It is true that JT is in many ranges.
    TooncesTDC wrote: »
    UTG and UTG +1 fold. The cold caller raises me to 2500. I think and finally call.

    why are we calling?
    what hands are we beating here?
    what's the SPR look like after we call?
    what do we think V is going to do on the turn?
    [/quote]
    This is where I'm having a hard time justifying. They can certainly be raising hands I'm dead or nearly dead against, like A9s, 99, 77, 22. But I am in the lead over a flush draw and I have a fighting chance (given poor) against a pocket pair (which feels most likely).

    The problem that happens in my mind is that I think they are probably thinking, "He clearly has AK, I am either already ahead or I can bet him off of it". And I got stubborn in this case, given the low SPR. Now what I realize that if they are right about my hand and that my low bet size will make them assume I have AK, I am at a big disadvantage in the hand and I will just be guessing if I continue.

    I think if I am going to take a shot at this pot, I need to bet 1600-2000 and then give up if called or raised. But I think my best line was probably a free card on the flop to get an A or K.
  • kageykagey Red Chipper, KINGOFTAGS Posts: 2,241 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2018
    good work @TooncesTDC
    this is actually a really good hand to "study" because it examplifies a lot of the trouble spots and leaks that we all have in our game.

    but me thinks you're still playing too much with the math, and not enough with the reality of live low stakes tourney poker.
    when offered a good price, live players call... they didn't travel all the way to a casino to fold. if you want them to fold, they need some convincing.

    btw, to be a winning player in live setting, making them fold is our bread & butter play. we make most of our profit by denying equity instead of trying to build pots in hopes of hitting the flop.

    I want to build the pot in case I win.

    in a cash game setting, I can sometimes get behind this logic.
    But in a tournament, your chip stack is finite.
    Every chip you put in that doesn't come back to you is another nail in your tournament life coffin.
    So, from my perspective, I would not be very interested in getting in ⅛ of my stack against 3 players ( a raiser and several loose callers) even when I have more pre-flop equity than they do. I hate giving the dealer control over my poker destiny. (I'd rather get in ¼ my stack against one player and have a better chance of winning a smaller pot)
    the pot is already 625 before it gets to you.
    when you make it 1K, the initial raiser has to call 750 to win 1625... and the next player has to call 750 to win 2625... assuming blinds and UTG limper folds.
    imo, you're INVITING players into a pot with a hand that only hits the flop 1 in 3 times. This is why I asked about your sizing. I personally don't like inviting tourney players to come into my pot to realize their equity.

    getting back to the tourney chip concept... that chips lost are more valuable than chip won... I would have elected to raise larger pre. why? because I'm trying to dissuade limpers & callers from continuing. therefore the purpose of my raise would be to isolate or win the pot right there.
    As for the bet size, I wanted to make a standard squeeze raise size, which I thought was 3x + 1x for each limper.

    I would discourage you from sizing things a la "standard" but instead try to figure out exactly what your bet size is intended to do... although I know Janda does say that one of the reasons to raise is to build a pot so you can take it down later... this really should mostly apply to when you're pretty sure you're going heads up (after the raise)... and should be mostly for cash games where players see chips as real money and not play money.

    :9d :7h :2h

    as far as board textures goes, this one is wet.
    this is quite important to acknowledge @TheGameKat because against 3 opponents -
    this board smashes their range much more than ours.
    they've not only got overpairs, sets & 2-pairs in their range (which our 3-bet typically won't)
    plus they've got draws like 86 & T8
    as well as pair + draws like 75, 76, 78, 98, T9, J9 to name a few.
    and of course ALL flush draws...
    that's a HUGE problem for us.
    especially when we bet so small that we're encouraging them to call and realize their equity. even their air is incentivized to call with any hand that can turn the nuts like 56 & JT
    this prevents us from gaining any clarity as we move on to the turn. This makes virtually any card from a Q-2 kind of bad for us.

    NOTE: ranging your opponents is an art. If they all played like us, the game would be easy to play. But they don't. Ranging them on suited aces and broadways is a good start. But that's not all that they'll have.
    if we can agree that only KK and AA (and sometimes AKs) 4-bet, then we can be pretty sure that they'll have all other pocket pairs - in addition to suited aces, broadways and lot of suited connectors & gappers.

    remember, this is a low stakes "fun" tournament. You're not playing against tournament pros who have their ranges locked down. you're up against a lot of loose rec players who are more likely to be playing "bingo" than poker (meaning that they're more likely to call with all kinds of hands in hopes to hitting a pair, a draw or two pair).

    I don't know about your games - but in situations like this, I've seen guys call a 3-bet pre and small flop bet with any pair, any draw, and all overs. ("the pot is too big to fold")
    So, on the flop - what is our bet doing?
    It's bloating the pot as our chances of actually winning it diminishes and the SPR grows smaller. This cannot be good.
    It also makes us look weak which may empower any V to bluff raise us.
    I think if I am going to take a shot at this pot, I need to bet 1600-2000 and then give up if called or raised.

    again, you're starting down the road of doing some good thinking.
    on this board, you're putting AK into your one-and-done bucket.
    it's not what I would do multi-way - but it shows that you're starting to rethink how to play this hand. That's a start.
    But I think you can even go one street back and rethink your pre-flop work.
    but a lot of that is predicated on your opponent tendencies. If they're super sticky, you can make an argument to simply calling the 250. or raising much larger. or even shoving.

    ultimately, what you do should be tied to why you're doing it... it should be part of your whole strategy. So, how I or anyone would play this hand is interesting to read & compare... but really shouldn't matter. for you to win more, you've got to have made the decisions before you reach the table and know why you're making them. And if you don't get the results you were hoping for, try a different avenue... or figure out why it didn't work.

    btw - using Equilab and all those fun poker calculators or GTO solvers won't give you the answers as to how to play. they'll only show you how certain plays under certain conditions will yield a range of results... and they're only as good as the info inputted (GIGO).
  • TheGameKatTheGameKat Posts: 1,757 -
    edited December 2018
    Great post, kagey I agree with nearly all of it. I'm currently writing a series of articles the bulk of which are aimed at precisely these kinds of tournaments.

    FWIW, I agree that a if you're going to raise in this spot a bigger one is called for, but without antes my default is not to raise at all (as you suggest as an option). This is my solution to your excellent observations about stack preservation.
    Moderation In Moderation
  • TooncesTDCTooncesTDC Red Chipper Posts: 34 ✭✭
    edited December 2018
    So, I am definitely with you on my post-flop play and that this board is pretty wet. I am still struggling about whether I shouldn't be building the pot preflop with a better hand.

    There are two reasons why I am thinking this.

    1) While I agree that in tournaments, your last chips have more value than your first chips due to ICM, my understanding is that ICM doesn't seriously kick in until close to the bubble. In the 1st round of a tournament, while stacks are still deep, i thought the ICM effect is pretty negligible. So, while taking a 50% chance to double or bust your chip stack costs you a little bit in EV, I would have thought that taking a 52% chance at doubling your stack (Or a 30% chance at quadrupling your stack) would be +EV in a typical MTT that pays 15% of the field. I certainly could be wrong about that. I know that Tournament theory is that doubling your stack doubles your chances of coming in 1st. But it less than doubles your chance of coming in 2nd, 3rd, 4th, etc. I tried to set up a ICMIZER simulation and I thought that I found a BE number at 50.7% equity to double your stack, but I may not have set it properly and my trial cut me off.

    For this question, I want to post a separate post in case an ICM specialist hasn't read this far in.

    2) I remember Sklansky's rule that when you do the thing that you wouldn't do knowing all the cards, your opps win and when your opps make similar mistakes, you benefit. I think we agree that these tournament newbs are making a mistake in calling the 1000 bet with most of their range (for sure the 1st one, less so the others). It sounds like what you are saying is that the rational thing is for these fish to fold, so let's make it big enough for them to do the right thing. That seems to violate Sklansky's rule. Now I get that I might want to make the bet bigger preflop to exploit their incorrect willingness to call a bet bigger than 1000. But making the bet so big that they will come to their senses seems counter-productive, since at some raise level, they may only continue with AA and KK.

    Now, it could be that after UTG calls, the rest of the players are making the right decision to call, and I'm getting less equity than a bet that gets the hand heads-up. Or that in a multiway pot, AK is so much harder to play that it loses equity in practice in later rounds. I suppose it's also possible that all of us are making errors by wanting to play this hand and that the EV is going to the remaining players in the tournament who may benefit from one of us busting.

    Thank you for helping think through these things. I used a lot of math today to attempt to substantiate my answers to your questions, while obviously in practice, I can't access all of that.
  • TheGameKatTheGameKat Posts: 1,757 -
    edited December 2018
    I think what you're referring to is that in a winner-take-all tournament doubling your stack doubles your equity.

    it is true that the "ICM tax" is small at the early levels, but there are a couple of issues IMO with taking that too seriously. First, there is utility cost. If you're firing up a dozen online tournaments every hour, taking 51/49s is fine. If you've driven 2 hours to the casino and have no intention of playing cash games, there is an added cost to busting. Second, if you're more skilled than most of the opposition, why push small edges when some clown will likely set you up with a big one?

    In the context of this specific hand, it's not like you've decided to accept the preflop overlay and run off AK vs 44 or something.

    Concerning Sklansky's Fundamental Theorem of Poker, you have the idea right, but in fact with AK it tends to work against you. The UTG player limp-cold-calling a 3-bet is almost certainly screwing up, but if you think about your raise size and the equity specific hands have against it, with the exception of hard domination there are very few hands that should fold once Limpy McOopsie-Daisy comes along.

    Incidentally, if you really want to push small edges, another option here is to just shove. AK loves all 5 cards coming off. It's slightly nuts since if everyone folds you're adding a shade less than 10% to your stack. If it were more than 15% I'd seriously consider it.
    Moderation In Moderation
  • TooncesTDCTooncesTDC Red Chipper Posts: 34 ✭✭
    persuadeo wrote: »
    Pay attention to KG's post, pay more attention to your stack, and if you can, get some coaching before the PCA. Your hands posted so far suggest you need some real work on your game.

    Thank you. I'm trying to talk through my worst mistakes at the tables and hopefully most of my decisions are far better. I've been trying to download as much information as possible in the 3 weeks between deciding to take a shot at this and recovering my poker skills from 5-10 years ago. I wasn't sure if employing a coach was an efficient use of time and money as I'm trying to get through the rest of CORE and the MTT Crash Course. If you have a recommendation for someone that would be good for me in the remaining week (including you) to use as a coach, feel free to message me.

    The reason I am even interesting in taking this shot is that my calculations are that I only need 96% of the average tournament player's equity for this shot to be breakeven, unlike a typical tournament where I would need 110% to 130% of the average player's equity. If I don't feel like I am at 96% when next week comes around, I'll still take my free trip, but I probably won't enter.
  • persuadeopersuadeo Red Chipper, Table Captain Posts: 3,821 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Well, to be clear, I am not necessarily in agreement over this raise sizing/calling argument, and think it is not the primary issue, anyway. But KG's points on the post flop play are very on point, which seems to be your primary issue, based on this hand and your few posts here. With a short prep time remaining, I would suggest focusing on that.

    GL in your exciting venture!
  • kageykagey Red Chipper, KINGOFTAGS Posts: 2,241 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I think we agree that these tournament newbs are making a mistake in calling the 1000 bet with most of their range (for sure the 1st one, less so the others). It sounds like what you are saying is that the rational thing is for these fish to fold, so let's make it big enough for them to do the right thing. That seems to violate Sklansky's rule.

    Sklansky's rule, like Janda's "build a pot", is more valid in cash games than in short stack/turbo-ish tournaments.
    it's fine to say that we caused our opponents to "make a mistake" by calling with a hand that had less equity than ours... but if they hit their low-percentage hands and we end up busting, we can no longer take advantage of this newly learned tendency... whereas in a cash game, we can reload and help them make these mistake again and again until we finally have all their chips. (This is why weaker players who get lucky like Moneymaker can make a big score in a tournament but can't compete in the cash arena.) My goal/strategy is to take as much of the luck out of the game as possible. I'm not looking to help you make small mistakes, I want to help you make BIG mistakes!

    also consider this: if we end up doubling them up when they hold 98 when we've got AK and the board is 9-high, we've actually proven to them that calling is a profitable venture (reverse implied odds). so then... did they really make a mistake calling our 3-bet?

    as Kat is stating, there are variety of ways you could have played this hand - and any of them can be considered "correct" because it's not just your 3-bet, it's also your follow-thru on the flop, turn and river. As Kat is stating, we're in a tricky predicament of trying to accumulate chips while protecting our stack. Realize that these two concepts are at odds with each other... because when we accumulate we're opening ourselves up to losing chips. And when we're protecting our stack, it's hard to accumulate. IMO, to be successful, we need to pick a side.

    This is why I prefer a more polarizing 3-bet. Even if I had AA, I don't want to go to the flop 4-ways. (with each player that calls, we lose a portion of our equity). Taking a more middle of the road (or merge) sizing puts us in no-man's land and since we already know that we're missing the flop 2 out or 3 times, we're pumping up a pot for someone else to win. While statically, we're winning when they call with lesser hands (Sklansky dollars), as I've stated earlier - I'd rather put in more chips to get it heads up than put in a medium amount of chips and have it go 4 ways. In a tournament, it's not enough to help your opponents make mistakes. we have to find a way to build our stack and stay ahead of the blinds.
    (Note: if it was your intention of getting heads up and it failed, that's okay. we can learn from that. That's why I asked if you had to do it again, would you do it the same? It's hard to predict what our opponents will do... so many times we make a raise with an intention, but it doesn't work. That's part of understanding the many variables of poker and figuring out how to make better decisions in the future.)

    Since you're pretty strong on the % evaluations, think of poker as a game of equity...but it's a zero sum game. By allowing other players to play in your pots (with small bet sizings), you're GIVING them a portion of your equity. My strategy is to retain as much of my equity as possible and force them to fight for every piece of theirs. If I can get you to fold even a hand that has 15% equity pre or post, I will come out ahead in the long run. When I get you to fold, that equity goes into my pocket. I'm not trying to play a game of realizing equity (for the most part). That allows the luck part of the game to have too much control over my outcome. No, I want to force my opponents to making a hand rather than try to make one myself. I'd rather be a gold digger than a set miner!

    Back to the hand in question... as you've properly stated, holding AK makes it less likely that any V can have AA or KK. Less likely, but not impossible.
    But we're at the top of our range! If we get 4-bet, are we really folding AK?
    I'm not (depending on opponent profile). So, let's get some chips in the middle!
    Damn the torpedeos, full speed ahead!

    UTG1 started this ball rolling by making it 5X pre. It's going to be hard to stop this pot from building - and since we've got a premium hand, I would choose to make the decision to go for it pre and try to shut everyone else's equity out!
    Besides, hot/cold equity is based on 5 cards - not just a flop. The more players that are in the pot, the less likely it will be that we'll get to the river and realize our full equity.

    But again, all this is based on how we choose to play the game and how we plan on winning pots. This is what I believe persuadeo is getting at... what's your strategy? what's your approach to the game? how do you plan on separating players from their chips?
    (note: if you plan on using "standard" tactics against standard players... well, you really have no edge. your EV is probably neutral. you're at the mercy of the cards. but if you use all the valuable information in a live setting, you can exploit your opponents and win more pots that don't belong to you! THIS is where and when good players become more successful than average players. And this is why you're studying and posting on the forums!)

    As far as ICM (independent chip model)... imo that concept isn't really in play here. We've just started the tournament. We want to accumulate chips. Me thinks we should be focusing on +EV plays and not worrying about the real dollar value of our tourney chips. we might also want to consider our hourly (if we play cash games as well).

    anyway - you're headed down the right direction - so congrats. But I'd warn you not to take book advice as gospel. it can really mess up your game. instead try to understand why the authors made such statements and what limitations such advice can have. poker is not chess where the answers are emperical. it is a game where decision made vary the gamut between optimal and suboptimal. learning to make as much of your decisions in the optimal side of the equation is where you'll be the most profitable.

    truly understanding the complexities and intrincities of poker is a very deep rabbit hole that can take you years to discover. OR you can get a coach that can help you understand these nuances and help improve your game more quickly. If you're serious about wanting to play and win, hiring a coach will more than pay for itself. you'll still have a lot of work to do on your own, but at least you won't be wasting time going down dead end roads. GL.

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