DEBATE: Results-Oriented ?

Stick66

Stick66

Legend
I would like to start a good-spirited debate regarding the concept of being or not being "results-oriented".

I have read various discussions here on CC of various hands or strategies and some folks will bring up the opinion that you should not be "results-oriented". Please share your views on this and maybe relay some published references of this concept.

Here's my take: If what is meant is that you shouldn't be upset that your play was good and correct but luck is what beat you, then I partially agree. You can't fight luck but I believe you can find ways to take it away from your opponents by denying them cards.

If what is meant is that you shouldn't be upset that your play was good and correct even though you lost for whatever reason, then I completely 100% disagree. I believe the object of this game is to win and win as often as possible. I believe a loss can only serve as a learning tool but should never be accepted as "normal". Yes, you can't win every hand. But you can minimize the number of losses, the amount of each loss, and the chances of it happening again through game improvement.

There's my opinion. Please share yours and maybe some other sources on this subject.
 
Osmann

Osmann

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When luck is the thing that causes you to loose, and you got all your money in with the best hand, there's ofcourse no reason to question your play. But I don't think you should ever be result oriented. To me poker is always about choosing the play that has the most +EV. If the play that has the most +EV gives my opponent the chance to draw out on me, so be it. I know that after I have made that play 100 times it will show a profit. This could include offering incorrect odds to draw to a flush, wich I know my opponent would take, but he would fold had I made a potsized bet. I know I won't win as many pots, but the ones I win will be bigger, and I will show a larger overall profit.
If you always try to win the pot as early as possible, to avoid being sucked out on, I think you're making a big mistake, and you're certainly missing out on a lot of profit.
 
zinzan1000

zinzan1000

Legend
If like you say, your play is good and correct then i would assume you would have already taken into account minimizing losses and improving your game.

I suspect what you are asking for is the perfect poker player and I am unsure one exists.

While the very best in the world will always use every tool available to them in pursuit of perfection, I think its safe to say that it is highly unlikely that such a phenomenon would occur with the luck factor involved.
 
Dorkus Malorkus

Dorkus Malorkus

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MrSticker said:
Here's my take: If what is meant is that you shouldn't be upset that your play was good and correct but luck is what beat you, then I partially agree. You can't fight luck but I believe you can find ways to take it away from your opponents by denying them cards.

If what is meant is that you shouldn't be upset that your play was good and correct even though you lost for whatever reason, then I completely 100% disagree.
Umm, care to give an example of each or explain a bit more? I'm at a loss trying to distinguish between these two 'cases', seeing as they look the same to me. >_>

Regardless, if a play is a winning play in the long run then it's a good one, and if I lose despite making a long-run 'winning' play, then so be it, I'm not going to be annoyed (much). Whether I get beat by some donk calling my AA preflop push with K4 soooted and rivering a flush, or my KK in the SB running into the BB's AA (is this the distinction between the two 'cases' that you're getting at in the OP?), to look back and think that you should have made any move other than the one that will make you the most money in the long run (which is clearly pushing preflop in the aforementioned examples assuming you have a short stack) is pretty foolish.
 
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Stick66

Stick66

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Dorkus Malorkus said:
Umm, care to give an example of each or explain a bit more? I'm at a loss trying to distinguish between these two 'cases', seeing as they look the same to me. >_>

Sure. My point is I'm confused, too.

Some say "Don't get mad at losing the hand because you made the right play & had bad luck" and I say "Maybe." This is mostly when you bet correctly and some chaser who shouldn't stay in does and hits his hand.

Others say "Don't get mad at losing when you made the right play, period" and I say "BS." An example of this would be to correctly bet your Jack-high flush and get beat by a King-high flush. Your opponents play was also correct. Or maybe getting bluffed out of a big pot by laying down your top pair when a flush is showing. Just flat out "getting beat" by another player. I made the right play but I should have the right to get pissed at the results. Thus, "results-oriented".
 
Dorkus Malorkus

Dorkus Malorkus

HELLO INTERNET
Yeah, but my whole "don't be results-oriented" ethos stems from people saying, in the case of your example, something like "I should have folded my J-high flush".

Obviously folding assuming the hand progressed fairly standardly (and you're using both hole cards in making the flush - there are many cases with 4-flushes out in which I could be convinced to fold a J-high flush) would be incorrect. Sure you can be pissed at the results, but don't let it affect your future play or your thoughts on the quality of your play.
 
Lo-Dog

Lo-Dog

Cardschat Elite
zinzan1000 said:
I suspect what you are asking for is the perfect poker player and I am unsure one exists.

While the very best in the world will always use every tool available to them in pursuit of perfection, I think its safe to say that it is highly unlikely that such a phenomenon would occur with the luck factor involved.

Phil Helmuth would disagree. He plays perfect poker and everyone knows it. At least thats what he screams everytime he gets knocked out by "lucky players":p :laugh:

(When I get home and have time to think out a real response I will chime in.)
 
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zinzan1000

zinzan1000

Legend
Indeed, Phil Hellmuth's game is often bordering on perfect, but even the Brat himself is aware that perfection itself is not quite within his grasp, even if he wont admit it.
 
Lo-Dog

Lo-Dog

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He probably wouldnt admit it but this brings up this question.
Should you strive to play a perfect game? Should you always make the "correct play" or is it sometimes better to deviate from standard play to take advantage of whats going on at your table? Sometimes I will not make the technically correct play to try and maximize my winnings. Is that being results driven?
hmmm....:confused:
 
ChuckTs

ChuckTs

Legend
great thread, mrsticker.
For the J-hi flush getting beat by K-high flush:
Say you have 1000$ sitting in front of you at a .5/1 NLHE table. Another opponent also has a stack of similar size. You hit your J-hi flush and bet it hard (say $8). He raises hard (say $32). You reraise to a big portion of your stack ($120), and are surprised to see him push all in (say $1000).
Folding here would be the correct play here, be it a difficult one nonetheless. If you were to call, and be angry at the results of this hand, you have to realize that it was your fault that you lost. You should have mucked it.
If someone were to say "don't be mad, you're just being results oriented.", they would be wrong. Your results could have been you saving that extra $900 or $800 rather than losing your entire stack.
If you had a much smaller stack, say $200 and he put you in, that would be an easy call. You're pot committed and have a very strong hand.
Losing here and being angry is not as bad as losing your $1000 stack, not because it's more money, but because with the 1K example, you had the chance to lay it down. You had a great hand, but there were two other possible hands that had you beat at that point. It's probably the correct play to stack off with him in the $200 example.
Anyways basically I agree with you, sticker.
If what is meant is that you shouldn't be upset that your play was good and correct but luck is what beat you, then I partially agree. You can't fight luck but I believe you can find ways to take it away from your opponents by denying them cards.
I think that is completely correct. If you made the correct play, then he drew against his odds, or got lucky or whatever. You could not have played it better. Being results oriented when you played the hand perfectly (which rarely happens) is silly. You played well and could have done nothing better to improve your chances of winning. Your opponent chased, or got lucky.
 
ChuckTs

ChuckTs

Legend
Lo-Dog said:
He probably wouldnt admit it but this brings up this question.
Should you strive to play a perfect game? Should you always make the "correct play" or is it sometimes better to deviate from standard play to take advantage of whats going on at your table? Sometimes I will not make the technically correct play to try and maximize my winnings. Is that being results driven?
hmmm....:confused:
IMO: that would be making the correct play.
Isn't the "correct play" the one that maximizes your profits and minimizes your losses?
Just because a book says this or that is the right play, it doesn't mean it will work, or that it will bring in the most profit/minimize your losses. Each situation is different, and you have to decide for yourself what is the best play in those conditions you are in.

-ChuckTs
 
Tammy

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OK. Maybe I'm taking the term "results oriented" out of context, or misinterpreting it's use, but aren't we all as poker players just that?

We all are hoping or expecting a certain outcome (or result). Depending on the player, it could be to improve their game play, or to maximize their profits. If we want to learn/improve our game, then just like in any competition, we must learn from our mistakes--and when we know we did everything right and still lose, we have to move on and not let it affect our overall play.

There have been many times when I've folded a hand I know I should do nothing else with but fold, and the flop/board comes up to where I would have won. But do I start playing these crap hands? No. Of course not. I take solice in knowing that I made the correct play anyway, and move on to the next hand.
 
F Paulsson

F Paulsson

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Results oriented thinking, specifically the bad kind that we're discussing in this thread, generally stems from people who post hand histories and include the results. What happens then is that the focus is shifted off of the decision (which is what matters) and onto the result (which we cannot control) and all advice gets jumbled because of it.

Example: A hand plays out where you have 9-9, and the board on the river contains 10-Q-8-7-K. You raised preflop, you bet the flop, but you checked the turn and someone else bet it for you. You're now bet into on the river, and it's just you and your opponent left. The pot is 9 big bets. Do you call?

You will get different opinions on this hand if you include the results ("Villain shows A-8) than if you just cut the action before your decision. This is why including the results is bad, because you let the results influence what you think is "correct" poker, when the results themselves are fictional; you didn't have this information at the table.
 
Stick66

Stick66

Legend
(I was hoping you'd chime in here, FP.)

Ah, I think I get it! There's 2 parts to it:

1) The focus should be on if the play was correct and not if it succeeded in order to assess any need for improvement. (IE: Good plays can lose and bad plays can win.)

2) The result of a correct play should not influence a future decision involving the same play in a similar situation. (IE: The emotional reaction to a loss versus any need for adjustment in one's game because of it.)

Regarding #1: When posting a losing hand history, people like to ask "What did I do wrong?" and I guess the answer in some cases could be "Nothing. That's poker." Folks like me who grew up in active sports like to think "If a play fails, I must change something so it doesn't happen again." So I'm learning that poker is not completely like that.

Regarding #2: This one I stuggle with. For the play in the posts above with a correctly-played J-high flush getting beat by a K-high flush, I would find myself remembering this beat and likely laying it down when faced with a similar decision in the future. I guess I should work on this. Seems like studying stats like how often a J-high flush would get beat by a higher flush would help get over this.

I think I'm catching on. Hope others are, too.
 
F Paulsson

F Paulsson

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MrSticker said:
Regarding #1: When posting a losing hand history, people like to ask "What did I do wrong?" and I guess the answer in some cases could be "Nothing. That's poker." Folks like me who grew up in active sports like to think "If a play fails, I must change something so it doesn't happen again." So I'm learning that poker is not completely like that.
Right. A common response that we see when people post losing hands is that they "should have raised more". This is not necessarily bad advice, but it's often weighted heavily because we know what the other guy had. Yes, if we know he's on a draw, we may have wanted to raise more. But if we're presented with that information, we may forget about how it's a lot more likely that he has some weak hand that we want him to pay off with.

Getting facts often gets in the way of thinking correctly about poker. Maximizing profit based on the information that is available to us is the name of the game - second-guessing yourself because the unlikely scenario happened to be what happened just here doesn't help at all. If you find yourself in the exact scenario once again, and it is once again much more likely that he's on a weak draw instead of a strong one, you should still not bet more, etc.

This is really really hard to come to terms with, and I like how honest you are about being competitive and wanting to fix mistakes, because it shows that you're coming to the understanding that you must strive for: Not all hands can be won.

Making the correct play doesn't always pay off. Making the wrong play doesn't always cost you. What we're doing is pushing a small edge, and the more we push it, the more money we will make - but 7-2 still has a 30% chance to beat AKs. It's unavoidable. Just think - one of the best possible starting hands is still only a 2:1 favorite over the worst one.

Poker is a game about information. We should practise making the best decisions we can with the information that is available. Seeing the hand history and the hand that we lost to doesn't help us at all, because we don't have that information when we sit at the table. Knowing that this particular time, he happened to have A-A doesn't help us the next time we're in the exact same situation, because he's still very unlikely to have exactly that hand.

What's worse is that the information on what hand the other guy had is even worse than useless: It's detrimental. It may influence our decision making in the future to the negative. Sometimes the results may be interesting, but rarely for any other reason than satisfying curiousity.

It's a good topic, MrSticker. Thank you for bringing it up.
 
tenbob

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juiceeQ said:
OK. Maybe I'm taking the term "results oriented" out of context, or misinterpreting it's use, but aren't we all as poker players just that?

Of course we are Tammy. However Ill assume we are talking about certain situations and small samples, like for example laying down the J hi flush described above. It may or may not be the correct example at the time.

However the larger the sample, the more results orientated we should become. How else are we to know when we are playing too high a limit ? Or indeed playing the wrong game/style. Becoming results orientated over a longer time frame is totally essential. Over the course of 5 hands of course if you feel that you would have played better/worse the actual results dont really matter, as long as you feel that you played correctly. Over the course of 50,000 hands, yea it matters, a lot.
 
M

maxsanders_13

Enthusiast
the thing is, that naturally as human being, we are going to get mad when we lose, if you flop a set of 10's on a jack high board and get all you cash in thinking you're good then he flips up JJ, its natural to get really annoyed. Likewise, when you get outdrawn to a 3 outer you get pissed for a different reson, one was because they got lucky, the other just because the other guy has a better hand either way you still get angry, so all this reuslt orieented, i think that you should be upset if they get lucky but still be unhappy iof they just had a better hand. Sometimes its hard to takea really bad beat or its hard to see your opponent flip up the nuts, but at the end of the day thats poker it happens everyday to someone and in the long run to everyone, AA will not win everytime just because its a statistical favourite and just because your opponent has to hit runner, doesnt mean they won that 2% of the time.. shit happens and thats just the way it is
 
spore

spore

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Okay I'm gonna take a shot and throw out my philosophy.

Anytime I make the correct decision, I'm making money. Everytime I make a bad decision I'm losing money.

ex. If I have top pair against a flush-draw, and I bet more 50% of the pot or more, I'm giving my opponent bad pot odds to call, and horrible implied odds. If I'm in this situation, over about 65% of the time I'm going to dodge the flush card (after flop). If the flop misses and he calls with me giving him bad pot odds again, I'm winning 83% of the time. At any point the flush draw may beat me. However, I may lose that time, but the majority of the time I'm winning more than I'm losing.

One big mistake that I see alot of people make is this. You get dealt pocket aces, you raise 4xBB pre-flop, get a couple callers. You catch your set of aces on the flop, however a flush draw or straight draw comes out. You slowplay the set and bet low or check/call. You're still a favorite to win the hand about 65% of the time, however you're letting your opponent draw for the flush, which is a profit for him over time.

Letting your opponent draw like this is actually a decent short-term strategy. Because most of the time you're going to take down a bigger pot (unless of course the flush hits). But over time, it's costing you. So, this might be a decent play in a tournament.

So my decisions (in ring games) are based pretty tightly on long-term results. I ask myself, what does this particular play get me in the long run? It's based pretty solely on pot-odds and implied odds.

However, knowing what type of player you're up against, being able to put them on a hand, drastically improves this strategy both in the short-term, and the long term.

To sum it up, every decision I'm faced with I have to decide what play will make or save me money in the long run if i play it the same way 100 times.

My tournament strategy is a bit different, as you don't have the luxury of long-term results. I still play pretty tight. However, I will branch from this depending on the situation. IE, attacking right before the money as players tend to tighten up a lot then. Also at the final table, the less players there are, the weaker hands you can play. Any Ace at a short-handed table becomes very valuable.
 
X

xdmanx007

Legend
I'll keep this short and sweet....If you take the proper approach to winning poker you must look at your numbers several months at a time. Thats when you can correctly apply "results oriented."

From hand to hand you can not look at the game from a results oriented perspective and it is mainly a psychological problem. The problem isn't the cards it's your brain remembering a good result when you never should have been in the hand to begin with.

Lets say you just happen to hit a runner runner with a 7,2 off to win a hand. Your subconcious brain is going to recall that and urge you to play that same starting hand in the future, because you had been successful with it.

Now we obviously know that playing junk with cost us money in the future that is why you should not be results oriented from hand to hand because it will hurt your bankroll and eventually cause you to have to rework your style....or in simpler terms retrain your brain.:cool:
 
S

Styrofoam

Visionary
I am not results oriented int eh short term. It is ONLY the long term that makes a difference - Results over a period of 10,000 hands or more. For example, i could call and see a flop with [10c][4s] every time, and hit two pair every now and again, but as we both know its a losing play in the long run. So, i'll fold it preflop and on the off chance a 10/4 hits the board, i am slightly annoyed, but releived that the other 11 times or so that only a 4 or only a 10 with overs will hit and i will lose money on the hand.

Furthermore, Lets say I have [5d][6d] and there is the [9d][jd][3s] on the board and 100$ in the pot and the pot is contested 3 ways. If the villian bets 100$ and i'm next to act, I throw my hand away. If the guy behind me calls and on hte turn comes a diamond, I get upset for a second, but remember that I'm only 34% to make that flush, and getting 2:1 pot odds is not profitable for me in the long run. I will lose more money than I win by making the call.

Thats what people mean IMO when they say results oriented. They are talking about the short term, and I agree 100% not to be that way. ANyone who is NOT results oriented in the long term, please, just give me your bankroll.
 
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