re: Poker & Pro SNG video
Originally Posted by Effexor
The thing that surprised me, and maybe this is a hole in my game, is the sheer amount of all-ins. Once the blinds hit 100/200, even though the average stacks were all like 4,000 people were basically in push or fold mode.
I just watched the video, and apparently you remembered this incorrectly. The two big stacks are ~4,000 at level 100/200, everybody else's stack is considerably smaller.
There are a few things worth noting though.
There's one hand where a player with 2,300 chips (AQo) raises to 600. The button with 2,200 chips (99) then pushes all-in and gets called.
What you have to keep in mind here is that they're down to 5 players, and both AQo and 99 are strong holdings when you're shorthanded, especially if your stack isn't very big.
Another situation comes shortly after that hand when the table is down to 4 players. The cutoff (chipleader) makes a standard raise, and the button pushes his big stack with JJ to which the other guy folds. Once again it's very important to understand that there's only 4 players left now. A hand like A8s becomes very strong, a hand like JJ becomes a monster.
The button has reason to believe that his Jacks are the best hand, but they're vulnerable against overcards. So he decides to raise. Making a standard 3-bet would cost him half his stack and pot-commit him, so he pushes all-in instead.
This is certainly good play, just make sure you understand why he makes this move. It's not a move you'd make at a 10-handed table against an under the gun raise.
Another interesting hand is the one where the commentator calls a button raise with 52s. The flop comes 10 high with two spades, giving him a flush draw and he pushes all-in for 4x the pot.
Personally, I think this is absolutely terrible play. If his opponent didn't flop anything he can take it down with a pot-sized bet (probably less than that). There's no reason to put your entire stack on the line when you have no idea what your opponent is holding. Will he call with an overpair? Almost certainly. Will he call if he flopped trips? You bet.
The likelihood of his opponent having such a holding isn't terribly big, but once again: why risk your entire stack when a much smaller bet will achieve the exact same thing?
A bit later the commentator once again goes nuts by pushing all-in on the button with A3s for 15x the BB. And this time he gets bitten. The SB calls with AJo and destroys him.
Once again: why put your entire stack on the line when a raise to 2.5x-3x the BB does the trick with the blinds this high. If the SB comes over the top we can fold our A3s.
Overall I really don't agree much with the commentator in the later stages of the game.
When they're down to 3-handed both he and another player flop top pair (57 vs. 87) on a flop of 467 two spades. The other player bets 2/3 the pot, the commentator jams for 6x the original bet and gets called. Then he goes on to comment: "The right play for him would have been to put it all-in right away. I can't see what's the point of betting 800 dollars around that flop."
Call me weak-tight if you like, but overbetting the pot 5-fold with two players left behind you when you hold one pair with a 5 kicker hardly seems like "the right play".
The whole point of playing post-flop is to get information. When you're first to act with two players behind you in a limped pot, you really don't have any information.
The commentator comes across as a bit maniacal and entirely lacking subtlety.
Once the blinds reach level 5 he treats the game like a war between tank squads when in reality there's a lot of room left for infantry maneuvers.
He keeps on playing that way when they're down to heads-up.
On the flop, his opponent bets 400 into a pot of 1,600 which is a weak bet. So he decides to raise his bottom pair + open ender which is correct. But he does not raise to around 2,000. Instead, he raises to 8,000.
Surprisingly, he gets called by a very bad hand, so one might argue that he made the right play (even though he gets sucked out).
But really, it was over the top again.
For a bet of 2,000 his opponent's pot odds
would be 2.5:1.
For a bet of 8,000 his opponent's pot odds
Neither odds are good enough to call with a straight draw, but 2,000 is more likely to spawn a bad call than 8,000. You simply can't expect the guy to put his entire stack on the line with a terrible call like he did.
Overall, the commentator was the only one at the table who kept pushing all-in down to the last hand. This is brute-force poker, and the fact that he finished second in the tournament doesn't mean much.
You may be able to steal the blinds a bunch of times like he did. But when you do get called you're usually in hell (A3 vs. AJ).