Tuesday, January 25, 2011

over the next few weeks I hope to improve my poker strategy - so your first thought would be - WTF, whiskey - what have you been doing for 5 years...If I were to make a suggestion, I would say I'm working on Poker TACTICS, but not strategy.

to use another metaphor from chess, Chess tactics are things like forks, pins, and moves that are basically designed to win material by force - for example - if I get a white knight on c7, and there's no queen in d8 or piece attacking that square, I will trade a knight for a rook since I am attacking both a king and a rook - or a pin is when the queen is in front of the king and I line up a rook (protected) against them, thereby guaranteeing a trade.

In my mind, poker tactics are ABC poker - the right starting hands, the right sized raise, and getting your money in with the favorite.

I recently had enough points to get a free book on Pokerstars, and I went with "Winning Poker Tournaments one hand at a time" - three of the better online poker players literally replaying 300 hands of their best material.

What surprises me is how detailed their thought process is even in these first hands/early stages - and ESPECIALLY in their decisions of what hands to put their opponents on - I flip AK on a K high board with only minimal danger, I'm usually all in to a bet, wanting to get all my chips in as the favorite - but then, you get into what they can call with vs. what I can call with, and it becomes pretty gruesome -

in short, I think I've spent so long trying to memorize pre-flop and abc poker I forgot how to play a table - my online tourney success is in the toilet probably for this reason - we've established years ago how I'm an expert at getting to the 10% before the money :D

with some new expenses in my world and an impending marriage, it seems wasteful to take all this time and energy I've spent on poker and not push forward with it at the low limit stakes anyways - if I can do for chess what I've done for poker, I should be a winning player again in no time - and now that the fiance is working some, I have a few more blocks of time in which to push some chips into a pot

so let's see how this goes, shall we? :)