Originally Posted by Creepy Jackalope
My point with saying it didn't make a difference.. was that I don't see how it reduces variance or limits loses.
It just lowers effective stack size, which like you say, alters game play, but I fail to see the advantage. So why not just buy in full?
I mean you make good points, but I don't see the advantage for the short stacker....
Some of this comes down to effective stack sizes, implied odds, and stack to pot ratios.
If you have a premium hand, lets say an AK then you should be ahead of most people at the table. The problem that AK will face on the flop, turn, and river is that they may be giving someone else odds to call when that other person is a dog.
Let say you knew (implied odds) that you are only 25% likely to make your hand and you have to call a 1:3 bet. You need to be 33% likely to improve on your hand to break even. However you know that if you make your hand you can shove for your entire stack and he will call.
Whether that scenario is profitable for the player depends on the size of the stacks in play. If there is barely anything left in the stack of your opponent than it is a bad play. No implied odds. You cannot make enough money on your sub-optimal call to make up for the times you lose.
If that person has a very deep stack then it is insanely profitable to make that same play. It would also be crazy for that person to expect you to call off your entire stack to a shove.
Those are basically the principles that allow a short stack player to play with less variance. They are putting their chips in when their hand is a favorite and they do not have to worry about being in a bad situation later. They can't be bluffed because they have few enough chips that they can really never fold. They are playing a pure equity game. They can never be in a situation where they have to make a hard call because the pot is $.75 and they have .$25 left with top pair top kicker. They just shove and realize they are going to be called by worse hands all too often.
If they buy in full they give other people the opportunity to put them in a hard spot. They also have the opportunity to pay people off when that other guy hits his hand. The bigger your stack size, the harder the game gets.
That may have been a little rambling, and I didn't even really get to SPR - but it makes a difference. Look it up if you don't know what it is and maybe that will help make some sense of what I am saying, since I probably didn't do a very good job on my own.