There Is No Justice

… in poker. A Supreme Court is needed.

The problem is simply that while making EV+ plays will win in long term in ring games, in tournaments, which are a much more fun type of game, you can make all the right decisions and still get your “ace” handed to you on a plate. To win a tournament, you need a whole series of lucky decisions to go in your favor, equivalent to a coin flip coming up heads eight times in a row.

In last nights late evening 1 million-chip tournament I hardly made an error in the decisions I made.

Early on I had few chips and fewer decent cards, but even with my ration of 5s and 2s, I managed to win a few bluffs and a lucky double up on a steal-gone-wrong where my K 2 cracked a pair of Queens.

On the final table I called a raise and a call from the BB with 4 2 suited. The flop came 2 2 5 and opponents were not pleased when I snatched the tournament lead, although in retrospect, I might have won even more chips by slow playing this unlikely monster.

With only 3 players left I was leading and going away, winning pots at will with bully raises as my opponents cowered behind their cards and sunglasses.

Until this:

My case rests. We need a Supreme Court of Poker that will reverse unjust decisions made by the RP poker algorithms. We need to march in protest to Replay Poker House and chain ourselves to the railings and go on hunger strikes until this is done.

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No extra charge for the sarcasm? LOL

For people who don’t get how much variance plays a role, especially in tournament poker.


I feel your pain! Moments like this sneak up on me still, and I thought I’d put all that behind me. lol (Whoever humbles me does me a favor–my motto in poker and in life.)

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If you beat QQ with K2, then you can’t complain when someone else gets lucky with you. Just think of everything after your lucky win as a bonus that you weren’t really entitled to, but got because you’re lucky. Now finishing third isn’t injustice, it’s more than you deserved.

If hands always went the way they’re supposed to, people would lose interest in the game quickly.

Getting deep in a tournament often does involve a lucky underdog hand prevailing at least once, but not always. I find I get deeper when I minimize my risk. I do miss many opportunities though. But it’s impossible to know ahead of time what your hand will be. So many times I opt to not play cards and then watch them turn into improbable monsters. If I’m hurting for a win, it can make me sad.

Poker is tough.

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LOL. I am perfectly aware of this, but my shove with K2 (actually it was K 9–my bad–K 2 would have been even better) was the correct play at the time, as I did not want to be blinded out. Like I said in a recent thread here, calling a shove with QQ and putting your whole tournament on the line is a bit of a crapshoot. You may indeed to 2 to 1 to win the hand, but you are certainly not 2:1 to win the hand two times running.

Interestingly, if you look at the stack sizes here, I seem to be in a pretty hopeless situation, but actually only two of the stacks on the table outsurvived me, and I think I pretty much have a read on one of them for future tournaments. (He likes to shove on the flop with top pair and eliminated me a couple days ago when I had two pairs on the turn and he shoved top pair and hit one of his two outs on the river.)

As the article linked to above points out, tournaments are inherently unfair, and no matter how good you are, you need a lot of luck, plus skill too, because you can play brilliantly all day and accumulate chips, then just one error or piece of incredible bad luck can take away all your chips and eliminate you from the tournament. And the more players there are in the tournament, the more likely it is that some lucky so-and-so will eliminate you.

Hence the only way to be sure of winning is to play ring games, which are boring to me, plus I am no good at them.

Since I have taken my bankroll from 1000 chips in September 2018 to somewhere around 35 million at the time of writing, and ALL my poker winnings have been from tournaments, with daily bonuses contributing approximately half a million chips at most (I do not collect the bonuses every day), I guess I must have had a good run of luck from time to time, but probably have mostly profited from mistakes made by opponents and from the fact that I play badly in low entry tournaments, but tend to focus a bit better at the higher buy-ins.

But as I state in my player profile, my ultimate, albeit modest, aim is to corner all the chips on Replay Poker including those temporarily housed in your account, so there is a long, long way to go.

The only suck-outs I ever get are when I have to shove something due to the circumstances, and I happen to beat a better starting hand. It happens, once in a while.

Well, of course you mare much more likely to suck out if it goes all the way to five cards, than if the hand ends at the river. The most common kind of suckout seems to be when a hand with second pair shoves on the flop and the hand with top pair calls and the second pair makes trips or two pairs on later streets.


In the situation shown with the flush draw the odds are slightly in favor of the hand with second pair, but basically it is a horse-race situation. However by shoving you can add fold equity, which would make the play EV+.

This is not a play that I ever use, but maybe it is worth a shot when you are down to less than 10BB in a MTT.

In the early stages of a MTT when most hands are close to the original starting stack, players with top pair might be inclined to let it go, especially at the higher buy ins, not wanting to lose a million chip buy-in five minutes in when opponent might have a set or two pairs, especially if the flush draw is on the table and the player knows the odds.

It is a bummer to know the odds, pick off the bluff when you are ahead, and still lose the hand.

However the second pair cannot know what suits top pair holds. For example if top pair holds the Ace of the flushing suit, or the Jack, that would increase his chances a bit.

Without the flush or open-ended straight draw the odds drop to around 25% + shove equity. With the partial flush or gutshot draw, you are somewhere in the middle, around 36% with the gutshot plus second pair.


This is actually the type of play I’ll often use, particularly when I’m out of position. If I have bottom two pair, or bottom/middle set, or a combo draw, I’ll check-raise jam (assuming the sizing makes sense) to put a lot of pressure on the raiser. If I get called, it’s off to the races, but if I don’t… Well, let’s just say it makes people think twice about trying to bet for thin value against me. That pays dividends later in the tournament when I’m better able to recognize equity out of position instead of getting bullied out of pots with moderately strong holdings.

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–There is no Justice–
hmmm , sure there is …

Lets take the preverbial “suck-out”…
Having it happen at a crucial time or for a huge pots sux, but if you let it eat you away… then I suggest the following : for 30 days, count all of them… Both when u sux’d out on someone else and when someone else sux’d out on you. My guess is that the results will prolly surprise you…

Or how about the insanly agressive person…
Well usually they ship-it 1 too many times and lose it all to a bigger stack, thus problem solved. ( unless there’s rebuys , then its over when no rebuys left or rebuy period expires ).

Not sure blaming an imaginary algorythm helps, hahahahaha. I will not re-hash what comments I have said in the past about the Shuffle/RNG. We all shud know by now… The ReplayRiver is a dangerous endevour. Poker in general is buyer-beware… ( and if your buy’n what Im sell’n, Im prolly making bank , lol )

Now, … knowing your opponents, not beating yourself, and not stick’n ur nose where it doesn’t belong (playing hands you shouldn’t) … usually will get you pretty far, even if your cards are never premium hands. The odds will catch up with you, or beat you down at times… give them some respect. Bad beats happen, both ways.

If you playd the hand correctly and got beat, just means over time you will come out ahead if you continue to play the same way. ( not talking about gettn read like a cheap novel… either )

Justice, like Beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.