Thursday, October 25, 2007

Be careful what you say

I'm playing in a sit-n-go, not really paying attention much, just playing very tight. My chips are dwindling some, we're down to 6 players. The guy on my immediate left says in chat "I'll take a hand any time now".

What does that tell me? It tells me that he's just waiting for a hand, not really playing situations. He's the short stack with about 1,000 chips, I'm next with about 1,200. Next hand I'm the button, he's the small blind, the chip leader is the big blind with over 6,000 chips.

It's folded to me. I have a couple of mid sized unsuited cards. Since the big blind has such a large stack I figure he's likely to call a steal attempt from my short stack so normally I'm just folding here. But after that comment from the small blind I figure a steal is a sure thing to work against the small blind, so rather than having to worry about a call from either of them I only have to worry about that big stack on the big blind. So I try to steal. It doesn't work, the big blind calls, but I get lucky and flop a pair, get a call for the rest of my chips on the flop from overcards and double up.

I'd have never doubled up that hand if the short stack hadn't made his witty comment.


Thursday, October 18, 2007

More on PPA

Balko commented on my post about his upcoming PPA talk.

I like Balko's blog a lot and like his work. He's done some really good work on police use of SWAT and related subjects. Very good. But I think he's out of his league with PPA.

He says

As for regulation and barriers to entry, well, you fight your battles one at a time. The best bill in Congress right now is the Frank bill, which calls for complete legalization, albeit with a heavy federal regulatory structure. Yeah, that's a compromise. And even it doesn't have a chance in hell of becoming law.

Heavy regulation can easily result in poker becoming illegal, not legal. In most states it's already legal, with various degrees of regulation. There are no federal laws against poker, and so far courts have not supported the DOJ claim that the wire act covers the internet.


Wednesday, October 17, 2007

PPA and Balko

Balko should ask PPA where they get their money.

I wonder if he knows it's not from "members".

PPA isn't for legal poker, they are for heavily regulated poker with strong barriers to entry for providers of poker games.

Balko actually writes for Reason and calls himself a libertarian. He should be ashamed of himself for supporting those people.


A thread from 1998 rgp

Here's a thread started with a question about psychological impact of color of the suits where Caro/Sklansky/Carson/and even Paul Phillips (who once vowed to spit in my face if he ever met me) actually agree that people are more likely to draw to spade flushes than to flushes in other suits.

With the hand histories available today somebody could actually test that hypothesis.

A classic about poker people, not poker

Here's another old thread, this one about Mason and David, not about poker. One of my favorite lines is when I said
The only thing you can conclude from Sklansky saying "Activity X doesn't
require intelligence" is that Sklansky has no skills in Activity X. The
only thing you can conclude from Sklansky saying "Activity Y requires
intelligence" is that Sklansky thinks he has skills in Activity Y.

Sklansky is essentially the ultimimate sophomoric deep thinker.

Tom McEvoy chimes in a few times. Over 100 posts from the year 2000.

A classic

This is a classic old rgp thread. It has an interesting poker question (badly phrased), Steve Badger, Mason Malmuth, David Sklansky, me, Andrew Prock, and many others.

One of the funniest lines is David telling Steve
You are incorrect. You meant what I wrote, not what you wrote.

Read the whole thread.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Update on the PPA

I'm a member of PPA becuase I played in a freeroll on an online site (I don't remember which site) which was funded by PPA and every tournament entry was an automatic membership in PPA. Just a way to build a mailing list to them. I got an email from them recently.

They seem to be almost moving towards honesty about the law when they say
While it is clear that UIGEA does not apply to Internet poker nationwide (federal case law has consistently held that the Wire Act applies only to sports betting, and very few states have any laws against Internet poker), the fact is that this legislation has had a chilling effect on your ability to access and patronize these legal businesses. In some cases, the new law forced some of the most well known competitors out of the U.S. market.

Friday, October 05, 2007

AK offsuit

This thread on 2+2 asks the question
Your in mid position with AKoff. early in 9 man sit and go early position raises 4x BB do u call or reraise?

No response suggests that if that early position raiser is straightforward and a very tight early position opener then you should probably think about folding.

But you should fold if that's the case unless you're pretty sure you'll get some nutcase callers behind you.

Against an opener with the range {QQ+, AKs, AKo} your AKo is a 39/61 dog and you don't have any implied odds because you aren't likely to get a lot of action from QQ if you hit the flop.

If you get called behind from someone how has in the top 20% of their hands then the equity distribution of (you, EP, nutcase caller) is (30/45/25) and you do have some implied odds from the nutcase so calling might be okay in that case. But even then it's marginal.

One of the things that gets critized about my book is that I point out that AKo is a hand that should sometimes (rare occasions, but still sometimes) be folded preflop. This is an example of one of those times.

Things do look a little better for AKo if that EP opener is tight, but not extremely so. Against a range of {TT+, AJs+, AQo+} the AKo is about even money and does have some implied odds against that range.