Originally Posted by youregoodmate
Ditto PokerBen. Not buying for max is -EV.
Ok, but why? I hear this a lot and for cash I understand it and accept it to be true...but I guess I'm just not ready to assume it's also true for tourneys just because it's true for cash...I want to delve into the topic and understand WHY before I invest in that as my new strategy.
Now, it may turn out to be true but I think it's healthy and wise to question assumptions.
For instance until 2007/2008 it was generally assumed to be true that tight aggressive was the way to play tournaments. Until some creative fresh minds starting questioning the old assumptions and landed on a new profitable strategy (LAG play). And started crushing tourneys and really revolutionized the game.
I'm not saying this is the same thing; but I suspect the dilemma of how big a tourney stack to buy is at the very least a more complex discussion than "always buy the max"
One possible consideration is your table draw. In a cash game you have complete control over where you sit, when you sit, if you sit, when you leave etc. in a tourney you do not; you sit where they put you and you move when they say so.
So for instance if I had a loose passive calling station on my left I'd want a big stack to fully extract. If I had a talented LAG on my left I might hold off because having position between 2 big stacks plays right into the LAG's style. Since he likes to take away lots of pots on the turn and river; and needs to have huge implied odds for when his weird hands bink hard and you decide to make a stand with TP or better...if effective stacks are smaller he can't have huge implied odds against me and I won't be facing as many tough river decisions...