The price of information

ChuckTs

ChuckTs

Legend
I sometimes find myself in a really confusing hand at a ring game, where i know i'm in a marginal situation but i still call. Why? For information. I want to see why he was playing a hand that certain way, so i can have that info for future decisions.

It's hard to think of a good example, but say i've raised with AQ and continuation bet the flop (say K38 with two diamonds) and villain cold calls. I check the turn (say a 2, no diamond), and he checks right behind me...I'm thinking either he's got such a monster that it warrants slowplaying to the river, that he's drawing to a flush, or that he's trying to hold on to something like TT or A8.
River brings a Q (still no diamonds), giving me second pair, top kicker. Still marginal considering he called a strong continuation bet with a K and two rags showing. I check, and he throws out a strange 1/4 pot bet.
Now i might or might not have the best hand, but i still call here because i want to know what the hell he had that made him play so strange...would he slowplay a set all the way to the river with a flush draw on board? Maybe he has a busted flush draw...will he make a weak 1/4 pot effort to take the pot down with a busted draw? Maybe, if he's really weak, he's very passively played top pair?

Any info i get from him will be very valuable in either future sessions or for this session.

So my questions are:
1) Do you call like i would in this situation (knowing that you're probably behind) to get information on players?
2) How much are you willing to pay for info?


3...
 
DESSERTLADY

DESSERTLADY

Legend
Chuck,

My answers are 1) yes, I would call a 1/4 size pot bet on the river with second pair high kicker. I also would wonder why his erratic betting pattern. Just so I could make note of it yes! The information gathered could save me or make me more in the long run.
2)It's according where my stack sits but I may reraise him here especially if he's short stacked. But I think would probably go half the pot at the most.(still all depends on mine and his stack) Since he just checked the turn after a bet on the flop, He may be holding a K making him the winner or the busted flushdraw making me the winner.

I don't do these very often does this make any sense? LOL I hope so I am trying to participate more in these discussions. :D
 
ChuckTs

ChuckTs

Legend
I didn't mean this to be a strategy question...though i do like calling this aswell from a strategic p.o.v. - and yes your opinion made sense ;) :)
I made this situation up, and it wasn't the best example for what i'm trying to get across.

Say the river was a ten...would you then call?
Sometimes i'll call with high card just to get info from him...

2...
 
titans4ever

titans4ever

Legend
This is more of a Limit move in ring games. I could see doing it in NL if the price is right.

You check/call or just call a bet to see what the other person is playing as cheaply as possible. You want that information for later. You could be playing someone for a couple of hours and you will have time to use that info to your advantage. The game never changes since the blinds stay the same. With online notes you will never forget that nugget of info as long as you use the note taking ability of most sites. People are creatures of habbit and play the same level and game alot so you can also use it the next time you play against them.

Tournament play would be different. I don't think you play with people long enough to really use that info to your advantage. There are too many variables that could change the play to make it worthwhile to use later. Maybe if you were big stacked and could stand losing the chips. Even if you
 
A

Allsopp

Guest
its a perfect play on your part chuck. the 1/4 pot bet [providing its not a huge pot] is nearly always a clear pot steal attempt after you have checked twice into him. if you had something you wouldn't of checked the river and thats why he bet. if you were going to check raise him and didn't get a chance to because he didn't bet the turn. then you would of bet the river to ensure he doesn't get out of the hand for free if you have a good hand. you calling a bet at this stage is a perfect move.
 
B

baudib

Guest
I'd call, but not for information. I'm calling because I have the best hand and I probably reraise. If he had a hand that beats a pair of queens then he's really an idiot.
 
spore

spore

Rock Star
I see a lot of times when people say they're "paying to see it" or "paying for info", when they really aren't going to get any value out of the information they learn from doing so.

Okay there's two types of information you can learn in a hand.

1) Information about what your opponent is holding in the current hand
2) Information about how your opponent plays in general

Now, if this is just some random player online... the 2nd doesn't really matter much. And the first really only matters if you have some information on the guy to base it on... otherwise you really are just going on gut-instinct.

The only time gathering information really is useful is in tournaments and against people you play with regularly (or will play with regularly in the future). In both cases you can find out just as much information by watching them in hands you're not involved with.

I dunno if this makes any sense, but yeah.. i don't like paying for information when I can get it for free ;)
 
ChuckTs

ChuckTs

Legend
i dunno if i agree...
personally i see way more familiar faces in cash games, and fewer in MTTs.
Maybe in SnGs i see familiar faces, but the odds of that are far less than seeing someone who plays say NLHE $1/2 10 handed, and i see them like every three sessions.
I definitely think it's worth a bet to get some info on a ring game regular that I could use to get a whole pot (or more) from later on.
You do bring up a good point though, spore. I generally will only do this (pay him off for info) if he's playin in a way i've never seen before. Obviously if he's doing something i've observed before, i'm not going to pay him off.
 
A

Allsopp

Guest
i strongly disagree spore. people constantly switch their play in tournaments whereas most stick to a strategy in cash games which means gaining information is much more relevant to cash games. also in higher blind cash games, you see the same faces on a regular basis and therefore it can be useful to understand a bit about people.

calling a bet on the river and seeing someones cards is a great indication as to how someone plays. the main way to make money in a cash game is pot stealing and if you can determine if a player is a pot stealer or not - you can take them repeatedly for cash and prey on their weak bluffs. therefore - paying to see cards in this situation is perfect for winning pots and countering pot steal attempts throughout the course of the cash game.
 
titans4ever

titans4ever

Legend
buying info is best at ring games. I play the same limits and have sat down at a table where I have notes on over 1/2 the table. You will never get that in a MTT. The info you buy is worth it.

You buy info in a tournament but the variables are constantly changing. The blinds are constantly increasing so chip values are relative to the size of the blinds. People will play differently if they are big to average stacked vs small stacked. In tournaments you always have to be afraid of the all-in factor since you usually can't reload when a donkey get lucky.
 
Dorkus Malorkus

Dorkus Malorkus

HELLO INTERNET
ChuckTs said:
Say the river was a ten...would you then call?
Sometimes i'll call with high card just to get info from him...

I prefer to just rely on hands opponents have shown down/mucked in pots with other players as well as PT stats than to essentially dump my own chips 'just to see' how an opponent plays a particular hand.

In the first example, I don't mind a call so much because there's a reasonable chance you're ahead considering his turn check.
 
spore

spore

Rock Star
Yeah, I don't know what I was thinking when I said tournaments. That is a WTF spore! ;)

I guess my point was, if the odds of you seeing the guy again in the future is slim, then you probably shouldn't be paying for info.. since it's not going to help your future endeavours much. And secondly, and I'm guilty of it as well, sometimes you just have no idea what's happend in the hand.. you're pretty sure you're beat, but you want some kind of closure on the hand.. just to make sure he wasn't bluffing. It loses ya money in the long run (unless it's against someone you are trying to figure out), but it makes you feel better to know the guy did have a legit hand ;)
 
H

Hurricane09

Enthusiast
I'll often do this with guys that are in every hand and are obviously just trying to steal everything. I find its often worth the couple of hundred chips especially early in the game if you have a real wild one. Usually I'll use this to my advantage and suck them in later. Did it this morning with a real wild one in a 6 player SNG and ended up taking him down later in the game after he ran all over everyone for 20 or so minutes.
 
Coryan

Coryan

Guest
Not really sure, BUT....

I can nearly guarantee if I pay off a bet on the river to buy information, the player will leave the table in the next three hands and I will never see him again. :( That is the Coryan luck factor!

I don't think I've actually done this unless I think it is +EV to call. But I can see your point and might consider making the call in the future. It could really be worth it if I need a read on a player and expect to be with him for future hands.
 
S

Styrofoam

Visionary
could make this play at a live game...but somewhere like Pstars or Ppoker, i don't think i'll pay him off here. Too many people that you likely will never run into again.
 
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