Losing coinflips often will make you a BETTER multi table tournament player!
If you have half a brain, you probably read the title to this thread and thought: "WTF is this guy talking about? How the hell could losing all my coinflips and never connecting with the flop make me a better player?!"
Rest assured, it certainly does. When you're the type of player who is capable of winning tons of coinflips in a row, you become accustomed to the idea that this okay, that this is how you profit from poker. Scientifically speaking, you actually create "pathways" in your brain (from the formation of synapses at the prefrontal cortex) that drive your game towards scenario's involving coin flips. Basic statistics tells
us that in the long run, you'll never beat the rake or your opponents consistently enough to make any significant money. In fact, if you're the type of player who thinks CALLING off your stack because it MIGHT be a coinflip, you're very likely losing lots of money. I wont bore you with bad beat stories, I've been playing long enough, and while I do consider my lifetime coinflip % to be well below 50%, I've learned that it is a good thing. When you consistently are forced to fold, steal blinds, make moves on pots to accumulate chips, fold, fold fold, and then fold some more -- you are learning the formula to winning a massive tournament some day. BUT THIS WILL TAKE TIME, TEARS, AND ATTEMPTS....also, a lot of $$, so take the advice at the bottom seriously when I say get a job besides poker.
I've always been a math guy. I don't believe in religion, ghosts, luck, or superstition any more than I believe in "Jack in the Bean Stock". However, I do understand that variance in multi table tournaments can be sheer insanity. It is NOT UNCOMMON to go months with a coin flip % under 35%.
I do WHATEVER I can to avoid these scenarios, but you don't win 100 man tournies by only getting it in with AK vs AQ or QQ vs 1010....at some point, you will push with a big hand & be called by one. FLIPS ARE INEVITABLE, they will happen.
Am I sure there isn't some Ancient Mayan Altar, where upon you can slaughter a goat, perform a magical dance, and sing a song to the Almighty Bulltilt Gods in prayer that you can hold with a pocket pair against BroadWay cards? No, I'm not 100%. I certainly hope that exists, because if it does, I'm going to get rich very quickly. However, until we're able to locate that, I have some good advice for GRINDING THROUGH THE VARIANCE.
1) Go to college, study HARD, GET INTERNSHIPS, get a well paying job.
This may not be an option for everyone, so just try to get a job if it isnt.
The reasoning behind this one is full proof guys. Making it through your whole life by grinding poker isn't just improbable, its a very dangerous road. Many of the people you see on TV aren't even that rich because they've split SOOO much of their winnings with backers. The ones that are, are certainly IMMENSELY TALENTED, but if I had to guess, I would say they hit the some CRITICAL pots at CRITICAL moments. Don't put yourself in a situation where "bad luck" can ruin your finances. Go to school, or work your ass off if thats not an option. Find a way to make good money outside of poker, because tournament poker, even cash game poker, can take years and years and years to level out the variance depending on many factors.
2) Bankroll management.
This is simple really. You can't be playing for more than 5% of your bankroll at any given tournament if you really want to make money in this game. 1% would be ideal honestly, but that not always an option unless you're playing online. Be prepared for the WORST IMAGINABLE DRY STREAKS, because I PROMISE THEY WILL happen to EVERY one of you! Be prepared for the inevitable guys and gals, so when it inevitably happens, you're not knocked out of this game completely. If you have a good job, & manage your bankroll well, then all you need to do is continuously improve your game. To me, this is the easy part. I'm always critiquing myself and I really do think I learn something useful in 80% of the tournaments I play.
3) Become a grinder.
Sorry Tom Dwan wannabee's. You'll never be him. Cash games arent my forte so I wont speak on them, but if you want to be a successful tournament player, you must grind your ass off. Sheer aggression rarely works for long periods of time. Multi table tournaments produce to many spots where you can be slow played, and you will also make a name for yourself quickly like this. If you're running good, then you'll makes stacks on stacks. But that doesn't last, and when you cool off, you'll have a very difficult time stealing blinds or bluffing pots. Both of which you need to be able to do.
ALWAYS play position. Read as much as you can about tournament strategy online, watch you tube videos. Tournaments are ALL about beating the clock. The clock IS YOUR BEST FRIEND. It will take out more people in a day than you could hope to in a month. Take your time, remember how frustrated you feel at yourself that you called off a stack with a non sense hand when you had loads of time to wait around for a chance to either make someone fold thus stealing their blind, or just wake up with a big hand altogether.
Thanks for reading guys.
I hope it has shed some light to some good players going through a tough time in their life. I know I would have loved to have heard all this early in my poker career. For anyone in college reading this, get your butt in the career center. Use the resources available, get a great job, and "swing for the fences" out in vegas with earned money. It'll make things much easier if things don't go your way, and if they do....then you're set!