Fun, fun, fun or LPM/MPM
Sunday February 04th 2007, 2:45 am
Filed under: Heads Up,No-Limit Hold'em,Opinionated,PokerStars,S&G

Played another nice session at PokerStars tonight and boy did I get down to business. I stuck to my new formed LPM/MPM-strategy and didn’t let anything get to me. But let me explain the LPM/MPM-part a little bit more.

Least Possible Mistake: That’s what I’m aiming for. Even if I hold a “monster” preflop, I don’t get too excited about it. After all where’s the gain in pushing there? I know that I can outplay most of my opponents, especially if the flop is somewhat favourable to my hand, so why take the biggest risk and freeze me out of my own advantage? So, I personally try to make the least possible mistake. One of the things that I change in my game is that I don’t put it all on the line when I’m not sure. For example, I hold top pair with a good kicker, but the board could easily given my opponent two pair or better on the river…how big is the pot? Is it worth taking the shot right here? If nope, my cards fly into the virtual muck faster than my opponent can curse his bad luck for me not paying him off. Or let’s say I hit two pair, but I’ve got the feel that my opponent might have slowplayed his trips or whatnot…fold fold fold. Wait for a better spot and get the money in with all the cards out and me holding the nuts (or close to it). Because remember that folding a hand is usually only a small mistake. If he’s jumping for joy, showing his cards, after bluffing me out of a 200 chip pot (3000 chips in play), so be it, let’s see who’s got the last laugh…All the while I try to force my opponent to make the MPM…

Maximum Possible Mistake: I try to convince my opponent that he has the best hand. Once again, this usually doesn’t happen preflop, but mostly on the turn and/or river. Especially if he can’t put me on the hand. Let’s say I hold 97s and raise preflop from the button – after all you can’t be too predictable. He calls the raise and is first to act as the flop comes down A97. He’s sure as hell making the cbet and if it’s a pot sized bet I’m 90% sure he holds Ax and I sure as hell hope it’s not A9…or let’s say I hold the same hand and the flop comes down K99…I sure hope he has the king…and when I smooth call on the flop I know that he’s drawing to two outs…sure, you can lose some by slowplaying, but it’s worth the risk, at least if you can afford to lose the pot. I’m trying to force him to make the maximum possible mistake by overvaluing his hand.
After this basic outline, which could be discussed in a loooooong post by looking at many different hands – which I don’t feel like doing atm, I want to get to some more thoughts on hands and situations that occured tonight:

1. AA on the button. If there’s one monster preflop in headsup, this is it. Even better if your opponent reraises you preflop…you smooth-call and the flop comes down 33K…your opponent fires another shell…you smooth-call….turn is blank…your opponent fires again…you smooth-call….river is blank…your opponent fires another shell…you smooth call with every intention to laugh at him for making this play with Kx…he shows 83o…snow man tater legs just cracked your aces. Are you mad? Sure, but do you let it get to you? Not really. Why? Because he just made a 600 chip pot by cracking your aces, but he’s still under the starting stack. So, too bad, it happens.
2.  First hand of a match, you start with a decent hand, raise it preflop and your opponent smooth-calls. You hit the flop and fire a half-pot bet. He calls. Turn is a blank (5)…you bet…he calls…river is a blank (2)…you fire…your opponent calls. He shows 52o…second hand of the same match…you start with a decent hand…call…you miss the flop…check check…turn hits you, but puts three clubs out there…you bet…he calls…river is another blank, but also a club…you bet…he calls…he shows 7c4s…you look down at your stack and you had it rough so far. You lost 300 of your initial 1500 chips by him hitting runner-runner two pair and a four-flush to suck out on you. Oh well, at least you know that he a) calls too much; b) doesn’t reraise with the winning hand; c) isn’t afraid to fire with nothing. You continue to play him the same way, even letting him run over you for a hand or two, before you make a stand after the river…he called all along and well, he can’t lay his hand down after the river…not even if he’s holding only second pair. Thank you very much, you made the maximum possible mistake by handing me all those chips. The game ends a few hands later.
3. etc

So…all in all I played 8 matches tonight and despite taking some horrible beats (Aces cracked, Kings cracked, runner runner flush, runner runner straight, two outer trips, etc) I didn’t lose a single match. Yes, I won all 8 matches. Now I’m not blind to the fact that there’s always some luck involved and this could really be one of the nice little upswings that variance grants us every now and then, but I’m still confident that the victories can be attributed to me playing good, maybe even better than good. Let them come to me…if they suckout…well, that’s the game…but it’s about the only way they can beat me…I’m sure the time will come again, when I have to lose some matches (e.g. two pair vs two pair, where you just have to pay it off), but considering my new, patient, approach to those matches, there’s room for a few of those. I even took some of those beats tonight. Those hands weren’t for all my chips though, so there was always room for my opponents to make their own, bigger than mine, mistake… and that’s what I’ll be aiming for in the next matches…make the LPM and force my opponent to make his very own, deluxe MPM…I’m outta here…good luck at the tables everyone…

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