How to play PP's shortstacked

spore

spore

Rock Star
I've found myself busting out on the bubble quite frequently lately, in large part due to my horrible plays with PPs. One that comes to mind is I'm in BB, there's 6 players left.. I'm shortstacked, and I get dealt pocket Jacks. UTG makes a standard raise of about 4-5x BB. I raise all-in and get an immediate call. He's holding pocket Aces. Obviously I bust out.

Last week in a live tournament.. about 50 players, I get to the final table and having been shortstacked all along I take down a big pot having hit quad T's on the turn. Shortly thereafter, I'm getting down in chips again because of high blinds and nothing hitting, and I get dealt pocket T's. Everyone's playing pretty tight and I had about 6xBB in chips, so I decide to move all in... thinking "i'm probably gonna take down the blinds here, but if I get called.. I'm probably in a coinflip". So, this guy takes forever to decide, and finally puts his chips in... i didn't care either way, he didn't have many chips left, and i knew he didn't have a big hand since he was taking so long to decide. then another guy who had just called the BB from UTG calls, and he has 1 chip less than I do.. so I get back the uncalled 10k chip. UTG shows JJ, and the other guy shows K4 offsuit! Anyway, doesn't matter.. JJ guy gets sidepot and K4 takes down main after hitting a set of Kings. The very next hand I get dealt pocket T's again, and somehow managed to get head-sup with the BB, and he takes me out hitting a flush on the river.


Another common scenario is I'm shortstacked on-the-bubble, and I get dealt 88's or 99's. I push all-in and either get called by multiple people, or get into a coinflip and generally lose (jeez, I've been losing all of my coinflip battles latley.. have been trying to avoid them as much as possible).

So yeah, I push with JJ and I'm called by AA or KK, I push with a small pocket pair, shortstacked, and get multiple callers, I push with TT and get called by JJ or get drawn out on.

I don't belive this is all by chance, I think I'm misplaying them... so... HELP someone please?!

btw.. you'll be pleased to hear, that outside of PPs while shortstacked, I've been playing pretty dang well. I'm 1st place in points at my town's location in a poker league (the fantasy poker league). This part of my game though is haunting me.
 
Egon Towst

Egon Towst

Cardschat Elite
I don't belive this is all by chance, I think I'm misplaying them...

Well if you are, I would too. Short-stacked and needing to double-up, you get dealt a pocket pair, you push. Seems like a no-brainer to me.

The only one of your scenarios that worries me is the first. If UTG opens for 5x BB then, unless you know he`s a maniac, you have to put him on a sizeable pair or maybe AK. In that situation, I would bin the Jacks.
 
mrsnake3695

mrsnake3695

I'm confused
The only cure for this is to make moves before you get shortstacked. Large stacks have incentive late in tourneys to call shortstack all-ins with less than optimum cards such as kx or Ax or even worse. They have a chance to get more chips with little risk to their stack and take out a player. So if you are all in with less than 10XBB the chances are you are going to get called by somebody which is really what you want anyway if you have a decent hand because you will usually be ahead.
 
loopmeister

loopmeister

Rock Star
I've found myself busting out on the bubble quite frequently lately, in large part due to my horrible plays with PPs. One that comes to mind is I'm in BB, there's 6 players left.. I'm shortstacked, and I get dealt pocket Jacks. UTG makes a standard raise of about 4-5x BB. I raise all-in and get an immediate call. He's holding pocket Aces. Obviously I bust out.

In general, 6 players left is probably too soon to be pushing JJ against a 5BB raise from UTG. Since you were shortstacked, it's as good a time as any to push.

So yeah, I push with JJ and I'm called by AA or KK, I push with a small pocket pair, shortstacked, and get multiple callers, I push with TT and get called by JJ or get drawn out on.

I don't belive this is all by chance, I think I'm misplaying them... so... HELP someone please?!

There is no way that you're always up against big guns with your pocket pairs. So I agree, it's not "by chance". I don't think you're playing badly. I do think this may be a case of "you only remember the times you lose". When you do win with your PPs its nothing out of the ordinary, so you forget about it straight away.

The fact that you are actually doing pretty well suggests that there are times that your PPs paid off.
 
t1riel

t1riel

Legend
When you are shortstacked with 6 players left and you're dealt a pocket pair, it's usually a good move to push all in. If one of the players calls you with a better hand, well that's poker. Would you rather be called by somone who had a worse hand and rivered you?
 
J

jsaw

Rock Star
Any PP turns into a good hand 1 in 7.5 times. I agree there are times to move allin -especially if short stacked - but whether AA or 99, PP's have
a common weakness - without hitting the board they are onlya single pair. The average winning hand in holdem - accordignto caro's stats is two pair. PP's turn into trips you have a hand to go to war with, if they miss then it gets dicey -especially with middle pairs. Also consider that middle PPs are a coin flip to any two over cards. They are nice hands but not great ones, thus should be played accordingly.
 
A

AlWMoe

Guest
It's hard to give you really solid advice without looking at the other player's stacks, but the one hand you might have played diferently is the TT.

Moving all-in with the TT is fine, but with your 6xbb stack, you might find several players willing to call with a-x and that might not be what you want. If you just raise 2x the blind, you either get reraised, or you probably get folded to. In this case, the JJ would have reraised and you could have decided then whether to call with what you now know is at best a coin flip.
 
Egon Towst

Egon Towst

Cardschat Elite
I`m afraid I can`t agree with that, Moe. When you`re down to 6 BBs, you`ve got one more shot. Put all your chips in or forget it. I can`t see any point in holding back half your stack. That`s not enough chips to be any good to you.

You need to double up or go out trying.
 
bubbasbestbabe

bubbasbestbabe

Suckout Queen
I`m afraid I can`t agree with that, Moe. When you`re down to 6 BBs, you`ve got one more shot. Put all your chips in or forget it. I can`t see any point in holding back half your stack. That`s not enough chips to be any good to you.

You need to double up or go out trying.

Agree. Pockets Js at that point is a hand to push it all in. The other hands are just a run of bad luck. Like you said; coinflip, except you called tails when it was heads. If you are shortstacked on the bubble and want to be in the money,remember, play turtle. There is always someone else who will be playing shortstacked and will be be losing.
 
B

broncos53

Guest
PP's while shortstacked!

I think that you are making good plays by pushing when you are short stacked with JJ or TT. You cant wait for ever to make a move. However your position at the table might also influence wheather you make a move all in or not. For example if you are last to act and only 2 people limped in i would raise all in hoping one will call with a lower pair or one over card. However if i see that one guy limps in for 30 and the next guy raises to 800 i might think about laying the JJ's down thinking he has QQ KK AA or AK all except for Ak favored over yours. I do wonder one thing though? Are you short stacked often? and if so why?
 
1FOOL4POKER

1FOOL4POKER

Guest
Sounds like you have just took some badbeats like a lot of us see every day, but if you are short stack and you have pocket pair go allin every time because that may be last shot you have with any decent cards. Maybe not every time but most of the time odds are that is your best chance of reproducing some chips! Especially if it is JJ or pocket tens , no guts no glory "or no chips either one"!. :joyman:
 

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spore

spore

Rock Star
Well, I was pretty much just speaking about times when I am shortstacked.. there are other times where I accumulate chips and am not in this situation. It's just been a recent thing that I've been shortstacked so often. Pretty much because I've been having a bad streak of cards, and I'm playing too tight. This is because previously I would go on bad streaks and play too aggressive and bust out early.

I played in my regular live tournament on thursday, and I think my PP play was pretty dang good. I pushed at the right times and let them go at the right times, except for one instance. I pushed with pocket Kings and a player raised all-in... obviously I called, and he holds J9s. Of course, the flop puts two 9's on the board and I lose a big chunk of chips. Later on a big stack pushes.. obviously trying to steal blinds, blinds are at 5-10k (blinds go up like crazy in this league), he makes it 28k to go, I'm at 18k.. I'm holding A9s. I think about it a bit, and decide he's trying to steal. Well, he throws up A8o, I have him dominated... and what do ya know? He hits a 9 on the river to hit a 8-Q straight. I ended up finishing 8th out of about 65 players, so it wasn't horrible.. but if I hadn't had those two bad beats, I probably would have finished in the top 3.

Thanks all for the good suggestions. They've helped a bunch. I think now that I am actually realizing the weak points in my game, I'm making some good improvement. I'm playing in a team tournament tomorrow. 4 people per team, series of 8-player SnG's, you get points for places. I don't know the exact format but, should be fun.

Anyway, yall are awesome. I'll try to make it around here more often. It's been hard with a new job.
 
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OneMoreBust

Rock Star
This part of poker isn't rocket science. If you are blinded and have less than 10BB left, push those pocket pairs unless you have someone showing major strength before you.

What else do you want? Wait 2 more rounds for AQ and push all in and miss?
 
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dsm420

Guest
you're making good decisions and things aren't breaking your way. in the long run things will even out. continue to play good aggressive poker and eventually you will reap rewards. depending on the situation hands like tt or jj might be good enough to call all-in with a short stack. any pair sixes or higher I'm all-in with 7 big blinds or less. the alternative is to play super tight and make the money. you will get more bottom cashes this way but far fewer top ones.
 
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