It must be hell

… to be a professional player and hit a bad spell. I had played 5 or 6 MTTs over the last couple of days without getting into the money, and started to feel that everyone could see what I had, and that I would never win again, and that my RP chip count and ranking had seen its best day, but then I entered a 1-million chip MTT this evening and had great hands, played sensibly, and even showed more than my usual level of patience when it got down to the last two and won 7 million, when my dominated KQo hit a flush on the river to eliminate the villain.

The hand most crucial to winning the tournament was this one. I didn’t play it in an especially great way, but the villain overplayed his hand:

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Congrats for the win!

The min-bet flop is horrible…you’re not really representing anything, and in terms of what you’re doing, I don’t understand it. Same for the min-bet turn. Anyway, I’m happy for you haha!
And yeah, V’s WHOLE line, like you’re saying, is just horrible…Just wut.

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The minibet IS horrible, I know. Both of them. I suppose on the flop I figured that if he had flopped the flush, he was going to shove, whereas the minibet indicated that I was willing to build the pot. I was also a bit concerned that he might have Ace of Hearts. He evidently read my minibet as weakness, which is why he shoved on the turn after I minbetted when the ace fell, since it probably looked like I was trying to buy another card for a flush draw.

I don’t know what he thought I had, because if I had a pair of 9 or higher, surely I was going to try to take down the pot on the flop, so what was I raising preflop with?

You always have to take the table history into account in these games. This was a timid final table and I had been winning pot after pot preflop with miniraises to which everyone folded, while most of the other players, except for one, were only limping preflop on the hands that I was not playing, so perhaps there was not much respect for my raises, although this one was clearly different as I was in the BB.

Although people say that RP rankings mean nothing, which I don’t totally disagree with, I always look at the rankings of my opponents versus how long they have been on the site, because I find that under pressure on a final table, lower ranked players often fold too much, or limp-call, and then crack when they get a couple of good cards, miss the flop, and realize that they are more or less pot committed or at least about to become the smallest stack.

In this case, there really were not any clues in the rankings, except that the lowest ranked player made a poor limp on the first round of betting and was forced to fold when I bet 4 BB and UTG instacalled, which was a poor call with AJo, considering that he only had 1 BB in the pot at this point and could have ducked out of the hand preflop with minimum damage.

Preflop, with these hands, I was 76% to win or tie, and then after the flop I was 88% to win, and after the turn I was 96% to win, with his only outs being 2 Jacks, the Jack of Hearts being a winner for me.

But in the end, you only have a few seconds to make a decision, and in this tournament I had already two times inadvertently folded AK suited due to inattention or lack of speed of thought, one of which would have won a pot and eliminated two opponents.

As I always say, opponents make mistakes all the time, so once you get to the final stages, any time you fold preflop, there is potential that a V will eliminate him or herself.

This is an interesting post. I have been playing on replay for about a year, mostly in lower-stakes ring games. I recently decided to move up to the higher-stakes tables (2000/4000 blinds) in an attempt to try to develop some poker skills.

What I enjoy about replay is the style of play that appears to predominate on this site, at least on the tables I have frequented in the past 2-3 months. Many players tend to play with a wide range of hands and it is common for them to limp in (or flat call) with both weak/speculative pocket cards and very strong pocket cards. Moreover, there a quite a few “big bankroll” players who will consistently call because they can afford to do so.

I find this quite challenging because it is difficult to put your opponents on a range of hands. Even with pre-flop raises in the 3-4 BB range, the post-flops are often multi-handed, which means that you have to calculate this range for 2-3 or more players. I have lost many chips because I either failed to recognize to see the range of hands that could beat me or, worse yet, because I overplayed my hand or made a foolish call when I suspected I could be behind.

These losses have actually been important lessons for improving my game. It is too easy too blame another player’s loose or speculative play for these losses. After analyzing these hands I usually conclude that it was primarily my own mistakes that led to these losses. To be sure, dry spells and bad beats happen, but one must learn to survive these setbacks.