nateofdeath's head's up strategy

nateofdeath

nateofdeath

Legend
I've wanted to start a thread on this subject for a long time now, and my win today in the CC team event has inspired me to do so.

I'm not sure that everyone though I played well today, but I happen to think I was in rare form. I have my own heads up strategy (though by its very nature it varies) and I was very peased with my abailty to stick to it, make some good reads, trust my instincts and pull out one of my favorite wins of all time.

Okay, enough tooting my own horn. Rather then try to write down my strategy, I am posting the full hand history from the event today below, as I feel it speaks for it's self. I seperated it into the three seperate matches, as they wouldn't fit otherwise, but also my strategy was very different for all three, especially the last one. Let me know if anyone has any problems accessing them. Also, if anyone who I played today wanted to post their hand histories from these matches, I'd be interested in seeing them. If people are interested in discussing this, I encourage you to examine the hand history, post questions, thoughts, strategies and other ideas. Feel free to question me on any hand I played. I know there is no right way to play necessarily, and I may not be doing everything right. I know I did make mistakes today, but I am very pleased with my strategy and am interested in hearing comments on it. I know I might be letting the cat out of the bag a little bit here, and probably shouldn't be telling people the way I play. But I think this is a relativly important subject for discussion of the game of poker, and I haven't really seen many substantial threads on this subject in the past, so I wanted to set the ball rolling if there is any intrest. if not, fine, but here it is. Enjoy the pwnage! (and yes that's the first time i've ever used that word;) )

-n
 

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M

mischman

Legend
What were you thinking here? this is the hand that gave you R2. Sticker is usually a tight player, when he raised that much there s pretty much no hand he folds and your a dog


*********** # 157 **************
pokerstars Game #8166774900: Tournament #41334609, $5.00+$0.50 Hold'em No Limit
- Match Round II, Level IV (100/200) - 2007/01/28 - 15:57:16 (ET)
Table '41334609 2' 2-max Seat #2 is the button
Seat 1: MrSticker66 (3430 in chips)
Seat 2: nateofdeath (2570 in chips)
nateofdeath: posts small blind 100
MrSticker66: posts big blind 200
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to nateofdeath [8c 9c]
Grumbledook [observer] said, "its a winning play"
nateofdeath: calls 100
MrSticker66 said, "no coaching"
MrSticker66: raises 600 to 800
nateofdeath: raises 1770 to 2570 and is all-in
Grumbledook [observer] said, "i thought you needed help sticker"
MrSticker66: calls 1770
*** FLOP *** [Ts Qh Ks]
*** TURN *** [Ts Qh Ks] [9d]

*** RIVER *** [Ts Qh Ks 9d] [7h]
*** SHOW DOWN ***
MrSticker66: shows [7c Ad] (a pair of Sevens)
nateofdeath: shows [8c 9c] (a pair of Nines)
nateofdeath collected 5140 from pot

*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 5140 | Rake 0
Board [Ts Qh Ks 9d 7h]
Seat 1: MrSticker66 (big blind) showed [7c Ad] and lost with a pair of Sevens
Seat 2: nateofdeath (button) (small blind) showed [8c 9c] and won (5140) with a
pair of Nines
 
Dorkus Malorkus

Dorkus Malorkus

HELLO INTERNET
I haven't looked at your HHs yet, but from what I saw of your game against MrSticker you limped your button too much considering he was absuing you by coming over the top pretty much every time (and you were subsequently folding). Raise more from the button and take initiative when you have position (note that he was folding very often to your button raises too).

I actually don't hate the 98s hand, though I'm guessing lots of people will. Sticker had been raising your button limps so often you have to put him on a huge range, and you have just about enough chips to retain a bit of fold equity with the shove (Sticker is no doubt a thinking player and may well 'realise' you are probably waiting to trap with a button limp, too). If the worst comes to the worst and you run into a huge hand, well, you've got a hand that's as good as any for cracking a huge hand.

I think your shortstack play against Sticker was as perfect as I can give credit for without seeing the HH, btw. When someone starts moaning about how you shove "every time", I usually just take that as a license to keep on shoving until I chip up. :)
 
nateofdeath

nateofdeath

Legend
well, I was borderline tilting for much of the match with Sticker, having to claw my way back from ugly hands (either poorly played or bad beats). I made the 9-8 (soooooted) play mainly because I felt it was live, and he wouldn't have raised me with a real hand (and even if he had an over pair, a suited connector isn't the worst hand to have). I was more suprised that he called the all in, as he had exactly the kind of hand that I put him on, and I wasn't expecting him to, but my perceived table image at that time probably make him think I was weak, which I should have realized, so it was my bad.

and Chris, I actually consider pre flop limping on the button to be part of my strategy, as it gives me an oppertunity to see how he reacts to perceived weakness and it'll teach my opponent to respect my pre flop raises more (as he'll see that I don't always do it, and if I do raise a lot pre flop, eventually he'll realize it's my strategy and it'll only end up costing me more money when I do make plays at pots). So much of what I do heads up is to get a better idea of the way my oppenent plays, and to try to make him regard my play itn a certain way, or at the very least try to know what he think's i'm doing. It may be costing me money, but it teaches me more about my oppenent, plus it helps me establish a table image, which only allows me to get better reads on my opponent and ultimatly play better against him, if I know how he think's i'm playing. This match with Sticker may not be the best example of it, but it has been benifical to me in the past.

-n
 
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M

mischman

Legend
I actually don't hate the 98s hand, though I'm guessing lots of people will. Sticker had been raising your button limps so often you have to put him on a huge range, and you have just about enough chips to retain a bit of fold equity with the shove (Sticker is no doubt a thinking player and may well 'realise' you are probably waiting to trap with a button limp, too). If the worst comes to the worst and you run into a huge hand, well, you've got a hand that's as good as any for cracking a huge hand.

well, I was borderline tilting for much of the match with Sticker, having to claw my way back frul ugly hands (either poorly played or bad beats). I made the 9-8 (soooooted) play mainly because I felt it was live, and he wouldn't have raised me with a real hand (and even if he had an over pair, a suited connector isn't the worst hand to have). I was more suprised that he called the all in, as he had exactly the kind of hand that I put him on, and I wasn't expecting him to, but my perceived table image at that time probably make him think I was weak, which I should have realized, so it was my bad.

Good point and i can understand just playing the fact that your going to be live because most of HU play is that and the fact that if you hit a pair on the flop or have a big ace preflop you will usually be willing to play all in.

But doesnt the fact that there is still enough play in the match to wait it out?
Say your just playing a normal HU game, blinds 10/20
AJ(HUGE HU) you raise to 100, get raised to 300 you might just call here and take a flop. Where as if blinds were bigger youd be jumping to shove your chips in. Are you not confident in your post flop play or something
 
nateofdeath

nateofdeath

Legend
Good point and i can understand just playing the fact that your going to be live because most of HU play is that and the fact that if you hit a pair on the flop or have a big ace preflop you will usually be willing to play all in.

But doesnt the fact that there is still enough play in the match to wait it out?

As I said i was borderline tilting. I should have waited it out, even though the blinds were getting tough. Yet understand this; I was not hoping for I call. It was not a bet that I wanted a call on. I expected a fold but (especially in my state of mine, which was honestly not the most productive) I felt confident that if he did call, I would not be dominated. Probably a weak hand meesh, but my read was right and I got lucky, which is really all you can ever ask for, especially heads up.

Say your just playing a normal HU game, blinds 10/20
AJ(HUGE HU) you raise to 100, get raised to 300 you might just call here and take a flop. Where as if blinds were bigger youd be jumping to shove your chips in. Are you not confident in your post flop play or something

Not sure if this question is in relation to a specific hand, but in this specific example, it would depend on my possition and, most importantly on my opponent. Some people would only make that raise with cards that have AJ dominated (just because it's 'huge HU' is no excuse to go nuts IMHO). Either way, i'd never even consider just calling there unless I was on the button. Out of possition a call there is just an excuse to lose money. If in possition I would only smooth call if I felt confident I could outplay my oppenent post flop, as most likely neither of us will hit anything (and btw I am as confident post flop as anywhere else.) If I could fish it out of this hand history, Chris said one of the smartest things i've ever heard anyone say about this game. I had commented that in my final match we'd played several dozen hands and never seen a river, and he made the statment (and i'm paraphrasing here) that if you never get to the river, the pokerstars random BS machine can't kick in, which ultimatly means, your opponent can't suck out. Why give you're opponent a chance to suck out, when you know you have him beat, especially heads up, where no one ever has anything anyway? You steal whenever you get the chance, never hesitate. I was able to crawl back in this way and survive every match I played today by doing this, no matter how far i was down. it won't always work, but nothing does

-n
 
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M

mischman

Legend
i still just cant see why you would shove on that with the stacks, blinds, size of his raise and his tight image how he would fold that and youd think that, not to mention that you can fold and still have 2.5k left.
 
nateofdeath

nateofdeath

Legend
i still just cant see why you would shove on that with the stacks, blinds, size of his raise and his tight image how he would fold that and youd think that, not to mention that you can fold and still have 2.5k left.

you seem to miss my continued mentioning that i was tilting and it was not the strongest play i made. yet if you want to nitpick one of the worst hands I played in this event, i will continue to try to explaine myself. His 'tight image' had nothing to do with it. based on the way I read him (which i certainly could be wrong about) I was expecting him to slow play monsters, and only raise in situations where he didn't want a call, but was willing to see a flop if he had to. I thought i could get him off it. I mean hell, i probably would have folded A7 off there ( though i'm sure you'll be able to show me a completly irrelevent situation where i didn't, as i'm sure it happened). In the BB with that raise, yes i can see why it seemed strong to you, but it didn't to me. I may have played the hand poorly, but to me it was because I should have better recognized my table image at that time, realizing that even though i knew he wasn't stong, he probably knew the same thing about me. Everything else was instinct, and ultimatly was right on track.

-n
 
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nateofdeath

nateofdeath

Legend
fair enough, you win!

don't be that way. I would love to hear your further opinions on this subject and on the way i played today. But i've wanted to start a heads up thread for a long time, and considering i offered my own hand history as a test subject, I am going to respond to and defend anything that is brought up in responce to it.

-n
 
M

mischman

Legend
of course, i plan on looking at the other HH's.

'You win'- meaning i undestand enough of your reasoning and that HH is done(for me atleast)
 
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