Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Cash Game Thoughts

Since I was planning only to play cash games in Vegas, I figured I would get a little practice in on Full Tilt before I left. I'm admittedly a cash game donk, and I'm sure that within the week or two, several players on FTP have added notes about me confirming this.

It didn't start out bad; in fact, it was quite the opposite. On my first real attempt playing cash games, I two tabled the $1\$2 tables buying in for the max. I dropped about 1\4 buyin at one table but worked the other table up to 2.5 buyins. A couple of hours, $400 earned. I was a cash game king! My bankroll entered uncharted territory - the $4k mark

But it's been all downhill from there.

Since then, my bankroll has dropped to just under $3k, but that's after working it back up from $2600. This is partly due to being a bit too aggressive, as well as not recognizing that my opponents were playing tighter than I'm used to. I started making some very loose calls, and a couple of times played for stacks when I didn't need too. I feel like I've reigned it in and I've started showing a bit of a profit again but I've still definitely got lots to learn.

One thing I've realized is that I'm better off dropping down to the $.50\$1 levels for now. My newfound bankroll isn't quite ready to handle swings at the $1\$2 level yet. Additionally, I know I have a lot of reading to do, especially from many of you cash game bloggers that I haven't paid as much attention to. But I know that I have a couple of issues that I need to figure out before I jump back into cash games:

1. Aggression. Specifically, finding out when to reign it in and when to keep firing. I'm also trying to figure out how to defend against 3-bets when I'm open-raising in LP.

2. Speculative hands & connectors. I'm still trying to learn the proper way to play these. I've had success with playing these hands strongly at times but I'm not sure the proper way to go. I've found myself limp-calling or flat-calling\check-folding more than I'd prefer, but I also haven't found any success in inducing any folds either. Of course, both of these issues are just a bigger part of the next one:

3. Information. Since this is my first time playing cash seriously, I don't have any information on any of these players. Additionally, I'm playing without the use of something like PokerTracker, so I'm certainly up against players who already have more information about me than I do about them.

Anyways, I'll try to get some hands up for discussion as I continue. I know that my losses are about 75% poor play on my part & 35% bad beats or just dumb luck. I'm confident I can flip those percentages the other way or better. Very rarely have I felt outplayed; most of my losses have either been due to controllable spewage or unnecessary aggression.

I never thought I would become a cash game player but I think I might be on to something here. I'm not ready to give up on SNGs or MTTs anytime soon, but I'd like to continue incorporating cash games into my repertoire.


At June 3, 2008 at 10:14 AM, Blogger RaisingCayne said...

Okay, I'm a d*ck...

"...I know that my losses are about 75% poor play on my part & 35% bad beats or just dumb luck."


So it's no wonder your posting losses at cash games, you've got 110% of reasons to lose! Get this down to 100% and variance might be a little less harsh on the bankroll.

At June 3, 2008 at 2:36 PM, Blogger Matt said...

Shut up, Cayne.

At June 3, 2008 at 8:43 PM, Blogger Alan aka RecessRampage said...

Cayne - What a d*ck.
Matt - learn math. it'll come in handy in poker


If this is full ring, reigning in your aggression is ok. Get aggressive when you have the best of it. Don't overplay one pair, even if it's an overpair. Work on pot control. Try to stack the guy when you have a very strong hand. If you have an overpair, don't go too crazy, even on a nonthreatening board. Steadily build the pot but don't go overboard. If you need advice, I'll be more than happy to talk to you.

Also, be careful following what gnome, cmitch, or I do in cash games. We play 6 max which tend to be more aggressive to begin with so applying that to full ring could be a little dangerous/heavy on variance.

At June 4, 2008 at 9:58 AM, Blogger RaisingCayne said...

I deserved all of that. :-)

Got your comment on my blog man, and I'd love to help gather interest for another local home game soon. (And I'm already well aware that Chris, MHG, is definitely down too, as him and I had an identical discussion a week or two back.)

And I'm happy to host again at my place, (hopefully with Andre's table again,) but am also down for whatever if someone else would rather have the game at their place. I'm pretty indifferent.

I'll leave a few blog comments hinting toward the idea today, and will try to shoot an e-mail out this week too to get an idea as to a feasible date/location. We'll be in touch...

At June 9, 2008 at 12:58 AM, Blogger lightning36 said...

Thanks for the comment on my blog. Yeah -- coming close a few times really sucks, but at least last night most things seemed to go my way.

Best of luck keeping your bankroll away from the Rhino hounds!


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