Wednesday, October 8, 2008

the old one-hand-and-out

fired up a $20 6 man tonight - got QQ under the gun on the very first hand. Ugh. Nobody believes you on the first hand. I raise it up - 4x to show I mean business.

The big blind reraises me. I check his stats - he's a modest loser, but not a complete donk. The best move would be to fold right there, right? I think about it for a second and decide there's some small chance he's got JJ/TT/99 and thinks I'm the donkey right? ok, then, let's shovey-shovey. H
is Insta-call scares me, but he flips over AKo and we're off the races. Sadly, he wins the race.

I have met the donkey, sir - you are no donkey. Tonight I'm the donkey.

So, how bad off was my QQ doing to his range of hands? Fortunately, the program Holdem Ranger can help answer this question.
Holdem Ranger is like PokerStove except that it lets you assign percentage chances to various holdings he might have. Sweet!

So, I decide his most likely holding is AA or KK, I assign a 50% chance to those hands. I also give AK a 25% chance, and then a 25% chance for 99-JJ. My equity is just under 50%, the classic race:

Results from http:\\
472,595,904 evaluations, 276 hole card combos

Wins Ties Equity

48.12% 0.22% 48.34% ( QQ )
51.45% 0.22% 51.66% ( 99-JJ(25) AA-KK(50),AK(25) )

Of course, racing for all your chips on the first hand of a SNG, especially when you think you're better than most of the table, is a bad move. Baaaaaad.

Watch what happens, though, if I decide this is a poor enough player to include AQ, AJ, AT in the race for all his chips on the first hand:

Results from http:\\
883,548,864 evaluations, 516 hole card combos

Wins Ties Equity
57.01% 0.25% 57.25% ( QQ )
42.50% 0.25% 42.75% ( 99-JJ(2
5) AA-KK(50),AK-AT(25) )

I've gained 9% equity just by making my opponent a bit more donkish. Still not a good play by me - not by a long shot, but it's interesting how much I gain with just the small chance that he's got a card under my Q along with an Ace.

And look what happens if I decide he's enough of a donk to shove any pair along with AT-AK:

Results from http:\\
1,315,049,472 evaluations, 768 hole card combos

Wins Ties Equity
64.14% 0.23% 64.38% ( QQ )
35.39% 0.23% 35.62% ( 22-JJ(25) AA-KK(50),AK-AT(25) )

Now that I look at my opponent again, he's got an amazing Sharkscope graph. Check it out:

He looks like a break-even player for 1000 tourneys, then something changed to make him shoot up quickly. Now he's on the downward spiral again. In truth, had I seen this graph, it would have made me even more inclined to call, which of course is "a bad thing" as I've already mentioned.

I ended the night with a $20 9-man and took third. Net profit on the night - minus $4. Could have been worse, I suppose. I should have gone out around 5th as I raised it up with A2s and got called by AA, but doubled up on a flush. Soon after I raised it up with AK, got overshoved by the same guy who had AA before - he was by far the best player at the table - I decided on the heat of battle I needed to call this one, he had AQ. I figured there was some small chance that this was a 'move' since he was a very good player. I was somewhat correct - an all-in shove with AQ looks more like a 'move' than someone thinking he has the best hand.

I studied my ICM actions at the end of this tourney and it looks like I made all the right moves there. I think my next poker-purchase will be SNG-Wiz, although the free SNGEGT-Lite has helped me a great deal with endgame stuff. I have read that SNG-Wiz will show you hand-by-hand if you played correctly according to ICM principals, including cases where you could shove over a big-stack raiser (but not an all-in move). This is a common occurance that I need to get better at.

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