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vltava   United States. Aug 20 2010 15:59. Posts 1742
So as I was shifting in bed this morning, trying to get the most comfortable arrangement of pillow and laptop (stfu pervs, I was just reading something), I managed to jam the corner of my laptop into my eye with considerable force. I was fine for a while but now my left eyelid keeps fluttering and my vision on that side is fuzzy. I'm sure I'll be fine, I just feel like it's my body's way of reminding me that "Hey Michael, you're stupid!"

Lying in bed around midnight last night, I realized I hadn't been outside of my apartment building in over four days, so just to feel quasi human I went out for a drive. I did nothing more elaborate than visit the ATM and get some drive-thru Carl's Jr., but it was probably good for my sanity.

Before my eye started acting up I did manage to get in a couple sessions of $15+1 today. My first was 24 tables and minus $40. My second was 18 tables (I usually keep it at 18 while playing the 3+R) and plus $300, making the BR now at $1904. Very encouraging, as I've mostly coasted at even for about a week. I don't really ever have downswings at SNG's, but sometimes I do have protracted periods of breaking even, and it feels really good when those periods end. Now I just need to get in a few more solid sessions to make this feel legitimate. Hoping to make another ~$1k before I cash out a little for the month; about half will go to bills and the other half will be for small stakes tourney buy-ins at the Bike, and possibly joining a training site or two (recommendations are welcome and encouraged). Then, in September, I intend to start focusing on $25+2.

On playing: I have seen some very bad advice on SNG's in poker books, by Moshman and Harrington off the top of my head. I think I have seen the Moshman idea parroted elsewhere: It's a complete misapplication of the idea of effective stacks. It goes that if you're shoving against a smaller stack, your shoving range should be what it is if you had the same size stack as your opponent does.

This is appallingly stupid. But I see regs who are obviously employing it with regularity. It is a huge leak, so it's somewhat encouraging to see many of the best players at this level employing it.

Why is it a leak? If your M=7, then you do not have an M=3 level of desperation. How desperate you are to avoid passively blinding out is a huge factor in determing shortstack shoving ranges. This should make it crystal clear that Moshman's advice is atrocious: If you are not desperate, but you are shoving with Q2, you might as well be setting your chips on fire. But wait, it gets worse. Your shortstacked opponent actually IS quite desperate, and will often call you with quite a wider range than you expect him to. You should not assume that he is playing optimally according to your standards (and it is probable, if you buy into a lot of the ideas in the poker literature about SNG's, such as ICM, that your ideas about optimal play are incorrect, but that's a topic for another time).

One idea you often see written about is correct: confrontations are frequently mutually destructive. Both players in a showdown sometimes have -EV, and the beneficiaries are the players not in the hand. I had to think about this to address my sitting and fuming about how this error by some regs often hurts me when I am the player in the BB being shoved on, which made me realize that I am the beneficiary somewhat when I am the short stack making the call, but to a greater extent, while less visibly so, when they make an incorrect shove against someone else who calls.

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tooker: there is very little money in stts. Last edit: 21/08/2010 13:19

Vchua1987   United States. Aug 20 2010 20:28. Posts 47

what do you mean by M = X ? I know it has somethign to do with your stack size obv, but how is it relative?

vltava   United States. Aug 20 2010 21:18. Posts 1742

Stack size divided by preflop pot. I think Harrington named it M to stand for Paul Magriel who was one of the early proponents of its significance.

tooker: there is very little money in stts.  

Vchua1987   United States. Aug 20 2010 23:29. Posts 47

ahhh ic that makes sense. Do you know of a good article where I can read the basic applications of it?

vltava   United States. Aug 21 2010 13:17. Posts 1742

Well the basic point is that your stack size divided by the preflop pot is equal to the number of orbits you have left at the table before you are forced all-in by the blinds and antes. You can see this is because you will have to pay the SB, the BB, and an ante for each seat in one lap around the table, and that is equal to the preflop pot.

For more info, I'm sure you could do a google search, something like "poker tournament M" or "shortstack no limit" etc. The Harrington on Hold 'Em series has a good introduction to the concept and tournament play in general btw.

tooker: there is very little money in stts.  


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