Push preference: pot-odds or/and fold-equity

killing_random

killing_random

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I want to pursue my previos topic: https://www.cardschat.com/forum/tournament-poker-59/short-stack-somehow-defend-blinds-482422/

I used to have a very simple approach to the push with short stack:
- all-in eliminates the benefits of position
- all I have to do is push with a somewhat good hand
- what happens next is not my problem anymore, suckers:thefinger

But this quote made me doubt
When I’m short stacked and on the blinds; I usually push all in with good cards if it’s been pre raised before your call...

What the situation I'd like to create with my push?

Do I want to successfully isolate or even squeeze from latest positions possible. Or win a max pot with pocket rockets from UTG, that at least one villain could call. Or maybe it's too risky for MTT and I should looking for the safest steal apportunety.
Or I want it all at ones:
- squeeze with pockets from MP
- oop folds, ip calls
- I took everything... :proud:
 
Phoenix Wright

Phoenix Wright

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Well a few other variables matter here - it isn't just about shoving and hoping for the best :D

A few things to consider:

-The position of who shoved All-In first; are they in the Cutoff (CO) attempting to steal the blinds or are they raising Under The Gun (UTG) when they must "get through" more players (earlier position they raise in [like UTG] then the tighter range they should typically be playing)?

-Stack sizes. Is the player who shoved also short-stacked? Are they the chip leader? Are they a mid-stack with the Chip Leader left to act after them? All of these might indicate different meanings and make us shoving justified or throwing chips away.

-Table image of whoever shoved first. Are they the table bully, or a NIT player? Even a TAG player may be more selective with what cards they shove with.

Similarly, but different, we must recognize how much fold equity we believe we have. If someone is already All-in, then we need to realize we have 0% fold equity because they can't fold. Against calling this shove, we usually want decent cards. However, if we were shoving first into them...then they might be the one correct to fold! It is a bit of a game of chicken and wanting to be the first one All-in sometimes. This is the opposite of position normally lol. In deep stacked hands, then we typically want to act last (in position like on the BTN), but when short-stacked, we want to be the first ones in the pot to induce folds. Obviously, being in later position gives less players to "get through" (ones who might call off the All-in after us), but being in earlier position makes it more likely we can shove All-in first.

How "good" your hand needs to be depends on a few factors such as your stack size and how likely you are to take the pot uncontested. You don't need good cards if you are certain you can pick up the pot uncontested; you only need a solid hand if you get called. For this reason, most players usually want a hand with some post-flop potential in case they are called. Can't wait all day for AA if short-stacked, but we don't need to shove any two cards either. It is a balance and it depends on many factors.

One of these factors is pot odds. We should be more inclined to shove All-in with more chips in the pot we can win, but again it depends on many things :D
 
NWPatriot

NWPatriot

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Well a few other variables matter here - it isn't just about shoving and hoping for the best ...
Phoenix Wright's response was quite thorough, nice work.

A couple more thoughts. As we get short stacked in a tournament, there are two inflection points that will affect our strategy, and we need to use both strategies.

The first inflection point is when we first enter shove/fold territory, we want to shove when we still have fold equity. This means we have enough chips to be able to apply pressure and get folds. Obviously we want players that will fold. Getting 2 or 3 to fold is a lot easier than getting 5 or 6 players to fold. Shoving over an open is not the best recipe for a fold, so we better have a great hand. These shoves still have two ways to win - "showdown or a fold".

The second inflection point is when we no longer have enough chips to apply enough pressure to get a fold. The other players are not scared of our chips. When we get here, we give up on getting folds (but we accept them if we get them), and we focus on cards with some showdown value. A's (bigger is better) and pairs. We are in "must win at showdown" territory so we want to force our opponent to hit a draw, we don't want to force ourselves to hit a draw.

We will all face both conditions. We don't need to panic, because "chips and a chair" is a real thing. Shipping our chips with any two, may work, but we should be deliberate and increase our chances of playing another hand.

Good luck and God bless.
 
killing_random

killing_random

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I usually don't call preflop all-in because it's not a something I can't live on without at mtt, even if I know he's shove with crap.

Also, are you familiar with a statement: "you should never preflop push unless you are in push-fold mode (10bb or less)". Isn't that just "safety" rule for those who don't really know what they are doing?
 
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NWPatriot

NWPatriot

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I usually don't call preflop all-in because it's not a something I can't live on without at mtt, even if I know he's shove with crap.

Also, are you familiar with a statement: "you should never preflop push unless you are in push-fold mode (10bb or less)". Isn't that just "safety" rule for those who don't really know what they are doing?


I am not a big fan of pre-flop allins (unless I am in shove/fold mode), because I just don't think we have enough info yet, so I tend to agree. I do think that 10bb is a bit arbitrary - relative stack size is important. If we are chip leader with 10bb left in a SNG, then the guidelines might be different. Many will say that shove/fold starts earlier than 10bb (maybe at 20bb). The reason is that if we call 3bb preflop and we get to the flop with 7bb left, now the pot is 10bb and we can't even make a pot sized bet. We are essentially paralyzed.

Good luck and God bless.
 
Phoenix Wright

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I usually don't call preflop all-in because it's not a something I can't live on without at mtt, even if I know he's shove with crap.

Also, are you familiar with a statement: "you should never preflop push unless you are in push-fold mode (10bb or less)". Isn't that just "safety" rule for those who don't really know what they are doing?

Eh...yes and no :D

Is 10bbs or less set in stone as the "shoving range amount?" No it isn't. 20bbs or less is generally considered a "short stack" (or at least short-er) but this doesn't mean you need to be in shove-fold mode right away; just that you need to theoretically playing cards differently due to opponents possibly re-raising you and putting you in a tough spot for the rest of your chips.

According the the CardsChat 30 Day Course (worth checking out btw)...

https://www.cardschat.com/forum/learning-poker-57/cardschat-a-new-ebook-training-course-455641/

(Day 13 is about shoving preflop)

...10 bbs or less is shove-fold territory for MTTs without an ante in play and 15bbs or less is the shove-fold territory for MTTs with an ante in play. Even this isn't directly set in stone though; it is worth understanding how these amounts are decided though.

Why 10 bbs or 15bbs? This is the newer school of thought and greatly math-based. The older school of thought might not be shoving this early (probably 10 bbs or less they would though). Keep in mind that these bbs amounts (even if math based) are estimates to work with. You may still want to fold if you are in a multiway pot, or believe you have a skill edge on these players (both cases would justify folding more often and waiting for a better spot).

Regardless of whether at 10 bbs or 15 bbs (or maybe even 20bbs), the reason for shoving at all is primarily:

-To give maximum fold equity (hope that everyone folds or we double up)

and

-To try to negate re-raises.

Say we are in an MTT with no ante in play and we have 10 bbs. What happens if we open-raise for 3 bbs? The problem is the possibility that our opponent can bluff us (or maybe just as bad if raising for value) and raise to put us all in. Now we wasted 3 bbs and only have 7 left. That might not sound devastating, but that is 30% of our stack we just folded for nothing! This is too much to give up without a fight and folding in this situation is almost never correct.

In this same spot, what if we instead shove All-in for 10bbs (instead of raising to 3 bbs)? Now our opponent can't bluff us (we are already All-in so they can't get us to fold) and they themselves might even choose to give us the pot. If they don't, we may double up to 20 bbs.

In summary, 10 bbs and 15 bbs is not the ONLY way to play a short-stack, but it is a math-tested approach that works. We may be a little flexible with the exact numbers (sure I might shove for 16 bbs with an ante in play or choose to fold at 9 bbs with no ante in play), but we should probably need a reason not to follow these guidelines. The 10 bbs and 15bbs amount is not randomly chosen (math reasons why that amount is selected), but that doesn't mean we NEED to go strictly by this 100% of the time with no exceptions.

p.s. The reason for different amounts with or without an ante is because WITH an ante in play places more "dead money" in the pot and gives us more favorable pot odds that may justify us shoving to pick up the extra chips there.
 
killing_random

killing_random

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...we should probably need a reason not to follow these guidelines...

The reason should be playing against very aggressive superior opponents. Then you should start to shove earlier than 10-15bb, to avoid situations where they easily outplaying you on a postflop without deep stack advantage. Right?
 
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