The effect of a bounty on your EV

Dorkus Malorkus

Dorkus Malorkus

HELLO INTERNET
Prompted by this post from Rob.

I had a bounty on me in a previous Pokerstars game (didn't volunteer and wasn't asked for my agreement), and it meant that I was called on a desperation all-in steal attempt when I wouldn't otherwise have been (and ended up being knocked out). If someone has a bounty on them, they should have their buy-in refunded (goes for JQ too).
My question is, do you think having a bounty on yourself raises or lowers your EV in a tournament? Assume you're of completely average skill compared to all other players in the event, and that there's an equal distribution of worse and better players. In other words, your expected profit should you enter this tourney without a bounty involved is 0 (your buyin back, not accounting for rake). How do you think the mechanics of this change as the bounty on you increases (or decreases)? For argument's sake, let's use the $25 buyin/$25 bounty that we had in the Stars event last weekend as 'base' values.

I'll post thoughts after a few replies.

Edit: Ignore the slight extra EV other will have from the fact that there is $25 in the prize pool that you can't win, and just treating this as a problem with regard to your own EV, bounty vs. no bounty.
 
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shinedown.45

shinedown.45

Legend
It definetly lowers your EV as more players are out to get you and will take risks in order to try and claim the bounty and in that case you should have your buy-in refunded if and only if you don't make it ITM.
 
M

Mooronic

Guest
I would think it would depend on your style of play. The TAG player might actually benefit with a bounty - they would get called more often against inferior / drawing hands. I don't know how much it would affect the overall EV.

The LAG player would probably be hurt more.
 
shinedown.45

shinedown.45

Legend
I would think it would depend on your style of play. The TAG player might actually benefit with a bounty - they would get called more often against inferior / drawing hands. I don't know how much it would affect the overall EV.

The LAG player would probably be hurt more.
sure it would effect your EV, as you'll have more players calling with marginal hands to see if they can take you out as opposed to not having a bounty and those same players folding those marginal hands as they would have nothing to gain by calling with crap.
Hope this makes sense.
 
Mugetsu

Mugetsu

Rock Star
Its totally going to work against you. I mean, if I was in a tourney and you had a bounty on you. If you raise and I have even a half decent hand, ill call or raise. Simply based on the fact that often the bounty is nearly the amount for first or second place! I know it sounds dumb and not good poker but lets face it, with an extra way to gain money in a tourney, you will take it esp if the rewards outweigh the risks!
 
robwhufc

robwhufc

Cardschat Elite
Lowers - I've gone through it (as per 1st post) - i'd got myself shortstacked and needed to pick a spot to push all-in to pick up the blinds and limpers. Jamile called me on the BB with a hand he wouldn't have had I not had the bounty on me (He admitted it at the time - I would have done same in his position), and ended up catching an overcard to knock me out. It can only be +ev if the cards are running with you - i've never seen a bounty player do well in a tourney - case in point, the first Hendon Mob freeroll 130 entered and the 4 mobsters were out by 90.
 
Dorkus Malorkus

Dorkus Malorkus

HELLO INTERNET
Question to all who've replied so far.

How do we make profit in poker? Relate your answer to the subject at hand, and to your replies.

For what it's worth I'll be explicit and say I think you're all wrong. :)
 
robwhufc

robwhufc

Cardschat Elite
How do we make profit in poker? Relate your answer to the subject at hand, and to your replies.
What, are you my teacher now?

Make profit in poker by winning more money than you lose in ring games, and by winning more than your buy-in in tournaments. I knew you'd reply like you did - dont agree with you with this, and didn't when you said you should add on in a rebuy tourney regardless of your stack size, so looking forward to hearing what you have to say (but please, no more exam questions).
 
M

Mooronic

Guest
Question to all who've replied so far.

How do we make profit in poker?

Ambiguous question...but in relating to my former answer, by playing the opposite style of the table. If people are going to loosen up to push you out, tighten up and wait for the nuts.
 
Dorkus Malorkus

Dorkus Malorkus

HELLO INTERNET
Rob, if my last post were an exam question, you'd get 2 out of 10 and a "Not enough detail" note scribbled across it in red ink.

To quote HoH (1 or 2, I forget), in the long run, your expectancy will approach the sum of your opponents mistakes less the sum of your mistakes. Gord's quote (sort-of) sums it up.

Now, slap a bounty on your head and do you think it will lead to people making more or fewer mistakes against you? They may actually occasionally be making plays that are correct in $EV terms given the bounty, but are also +EV for you. Often however, especially with 'only' a bounty of the buyin, your opponents will just be making -EV moves against you.

The very nature of a bounty increases your variance wildly, but your expected return is higher quite simply because your opponents will be making more mistakes against you. It's also worth noting that the better a player you are, the more it will increase your EV, as the more you will be able to adapt and alter your play to suit the situation.

Saying playing with a bounty on your head is -EV is almost exactly the same as saying playing at a table filled with really loose-passive players is -EV. Doesn't this sound a little silly, considering that loose-passives are among the worst 'type' of players?

Of course if the bounty is a large one, you'd rather have it on somebody else's head as there reaches a point where the EV of potentially winning the bounty outstrips the extra EV you get from having the bounty on your head, but that's another topic for another day.

I look forward to your response Rob, preferably sans whining. ;)
 
robwhufc

robwhufc

Cardschat Elite
I don't do "sans whining" you know that!

I'm playing the Titan freeroll, that's why my post didn't have enough detail, but i'll make this post even more succint - bollocks! You can talk about +ev and -ev all you like, but giving people extra incentive to knock you out doesn't help you. I can see 2 major flaws in your argument - Firstly, Players may make more mistakes against you, but if the "correct" play is folding Q 7 when the short stacked bounty goes all-in, then that "mistake" will knock you out when you flop over J 10 and cant improve. Secondly, you lose out by being attacked when short-stacked (often 3 or 4 opponents against you on the flop) but you do NOT benefit from mistakes when you are going well - if you have a large stack players will not make "mistakes" against you, as you could knock THEM out of the tourney (and in most bounty tourneys the win prize money is worth more that the bounty). Therefore you get all the negative of mistakes (players calling when you are shortstacked with rags) but none of the positive (players calling when you are large stacked with a big hand).
 
pokerrqueenn

pokerrqueenn

Legend
For what it's worth I'll be explicit and say I think you're all wrong. :)[/quote]
:D lol
 
tenbob

tenbob

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Considering that ive never played with a bounty on my head (once in a small live game ) my opnion is really without much experience in the matter. I for one wont go against some-one with a bounty on their heads without either the goods or the odds, because usually the bounty player will realise that your after the bounty.

Hence if Im ever bounty'd (id actually value the experience now) i think that id like it. Getting in when your the favourate is surely your goal in a tournament, is to get your chips in the middle when your a favourate, and because certain players will call with anything, surely in the long run this is good. Again, I emphasise that im talking blind here, maybe I could be the bounty'd player in the next stars game just for giggles.

Anyhow, I let ye get back to the handbag stuff lads :)
 
medeiros13

medeiros13

Rock Star
I actually find this topic to be pretty fascinating...Rob and Chris, I actually find myself agreeing with both of you...call me switzerland if you like! The only point that I'd argue is Rob's point that he's still EV- if he has a large chip stack. Rob, at some point, you have the chips to make that "bad call" that you talked about earlier. You can take the what the heck chance to knock someone out; just as Harrington discusses in his HoH series when you have a 10-1 chip advantage on the all in player.

My mind has also wandered to the wsop; I don't want to hijack this thread too much but do you think the pros feel the same as Rob. There is no "bounty" per se but there is certainly bragging rights for amatures that can knock out a pro in the ME. I know that in the past, Howard Lederer has pretty much said he gets frustrated with amatures making him protect his stack every hand. (I believe it was the 04 ME)
 
robwhufc

robwhufc

Cardschat Elite
Sidetrack a bit, but we should have a bounty tournament for $10 buy in - instead of playing for prize money, you play for your opponent's $10's instead. We'll see how people play then. Can any site do this do you reckon?
 
gord962

gord962

Legend
I think Michman already has something similar to this Rob to be played on pokerstars. You can search his threads or PM him for details. I'm too lazy to attach the link :(
 
robwhufc

robwhufc

Cardschat Elite
Yep you're right - missed that! Don't think i'll be sending money to an individual member though, still be cool if it was an official game.
 
T

Threesixes

Visionary
The bounty will entice people into making calls that they shouldnt. Thats what you want. This is +EV. Youre more likely to get bad beats too, but thats OK, its just due the amount of times you are going to be going in with the best hand.

I would really enjoy having a bounty on me in one of those rebuy tourneys. You could build yourself a big stack awfully quick. :D
 
Tammy

Tammy

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I wish I could answer this question based on my experience from the poker stars game. However, I was so friggin' card dead, it was insane. I should have gotten my HH's for the tournament.

That being said, I totally agree with the +EV consensus. Josh put it pretty well: the bounty will entice people to make bad calls (i.e. mistakes)! Which, in poker, is precisely what you want. As long as you play tight/aggro (and your cards cooperate) you should be fine.
 
M

myxiplx

Rock Star
Ok, folks will be making bad calls, but is that countered by the huge loss of fold equity caused by the bounty, and the increased odds of you busting out?

Whereas previously you would be able to make moves with marginal hands and put pressure on your opponent, now that pressure is reduced. Yes, you will get more calls with good or monster hands, but you're going to have to play much, much tigher because your arsenal of aggressive plays are now next to useless.

I'd love to have a bounty on my head in a cash game, you're going to be way ahead because of the bad / desperate calls people will make. In a tournament situation it gives you a chance to seriously increase your chipstack, but does this at a cost of making it much, much more difficult to survive the tournament.

Think of it like this: Even if you play incredibly tight and only make moves on the board when you're hugely ahead (AA v xx) you're going to be something like 8:1 in favour of winning every hand. However if many opponents are prepared to put you all in in this situation, as soon as you've played 8 hands like this, it's more likely than not that you'll be busted out of the tournament.

Myx
 
M

myxiplx

Rock Star
PS. And weak opponents are especially likely to want to put you all in. If they don't feel they can survive to get in the money, it's actually more profitable for them to take that 8:1 gamble on a single hand and try to get lucky.

If they do get lucky, not only have they won the bounty, but they've got a much better chance of placing in the tournament too.
 
F Paulsson

F Paulsson

euro love
That being said, I totally agree with the +EV consensus. Josh put it pretty well: the bounty will entice people to make bad calls (i.e. mistakes)! Which, in poker, is precisely what you want. As long as you play tight/aggro (and your cards cooperate) you should be fine.
For the sake of stringency, I must point out that not all players play perfectly or too-loose by default. Some players are simply too tight, and the effect of the bounty may be that they loosen up just enough to start playing perfectly. Fortunately, there aren't too many players who are too tight. ;)
 
Dorkus Malorkus

Dorkus Malorkus

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For the sake of stringency, I must point out that not all players play perfectly or too-loose by default. Some players are simply too tight, and the effect of the bounty may be that they loosen up just enough to start playing perfectly. Fortunately, there aren't too many players who are too tight. ;)

Nit! :)

Rob, giving people 'extra incentive' to knock you out doesn't mean they automatically play better against you. That was sort of the whole point of my last post. :p

You also seem to be not be allowing for the fact that in tournaments, you all start with the same stack, and with very low blinds. The majority of your 'bonus' EV will come towards the start of the tournament, where people are calling your non-crippling raises with crap and overplaying TPWK or weaker.

As long as you have reasonable reads on your opponents and know about shortstacked pushing ranges I don't see why you're still not getting extra EV later on even if shortstacked though. Yeah you will get called more often, so you tighten up your pushing range accordingly. You're right, sometimes you will be card dead but if you're card dead without a bounty on you you're still in a predicament. Plus the extra EV you gain early on in a tournament will lead to you being short later on less often anyway (you will either have an above average stack or be out, usually).
 
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blankoblanco

blankoblanco

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As long as you have reasonable reads on your opponents and know about shortstacked pushing ranges I don't see why you're still not getting extra EV later on even if shortstacked though. Yeah you will get called more often, so you tighten up your pushing range accordingly.

You will get called much more often. This is a huge problem. Tighten up your pushing range accordingly? So I guess we're planning on getting dealt lots of pairs JJ and up? We're not always going to have the choice. Okay, so I have a bounty on me, I'm relatively shortstacked, and I push with AK. A bigger stack calling with two even slightly reasonable under cards is ~35%-40% to beat me. If this situation happens 3 times, my average expectation is to be out of the tournament. MTTs by nature are almost always going to breed some monstrous sized stacks in comparison to the rest of the field in the middle to late stages, and the vast majority of the time I'm not going to be one of them. So I "tighten up my pushing range". If I'm not getting dealt aces or kings, that's not going to help a whole lot. With a number of stacks that can afford to lose the sum of your stack ten times over, and the incentive of a bounty, you're going to be called excessively and your tournament life will be at risk excessively with 3:2 and 2:1 advantages. You don't want this at all. You want as many uncontested blinds and antes as possible.

I think this dynamic puts a sizeable hole in the usually acceptable "you make money from your opponent's mistakes" statement. On average, I'm not convinced that a bounty is +EV.
 
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