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Midstakes MTT Discussion and analysis of midstakes MTT strategy

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Old 05-02-2017, 04:57 AM   #1
floattheboat
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Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

I have been playing plenty of $50-80, some rebuy, and some $100 at my local cardrooms.

Small tournaments run 20-30 people, large ones can run up to 150.

What is the skill difference between the levels I have been playing at and $120, $50/50/50, $150, and $250s? They have these big 'once a money $250' things and I'm not sure if its the same players that play the 'big event' or how much overlap, etc.

In most of the games I have been playing, the majority of players are super fishy - all the limping, etc junk and I just have to deal with the 10% of semi-proficient players. I have also been successful online at STTs and MTTs mostly at $5-$8, sometimes $10.
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Old 05-02-2017, 02:23 PM   #2
BAHighRoller
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

I can tell you from my experience only. Yours may prove to be different. At the $300 level you still get junk, limping, etc. At the $500 level it is not quite as bad but of course depends how many of those people are satellite winners. Again this is just my experience. Others may have different views.
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Old 05-03-2017, 04:59 PM   #3
floattheboat
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

Thank you BAH. Any other thoughts on this guys? Perhaps another thread where this is discussed?
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Old 05-03-2017, 05:39 PM   #4
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

I wouldn't change my approach at any buy in.
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Old 05-04-2017, 07:46 AM   #5
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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I wouldn't change my approach at any buy in.
So we just play correct poker, and don't adjust between a live $100 and a super high roller?
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Old 05-04-2017, 09:47 AM   #6
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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Originally Posted by floattheboat View Post
I have been playing plenty of $50-80, some rebuy, and some $100 at my local cardrooms.

Small tournaments run 20-30 people, large ones can run up to 150.

What is the skill difference between the levels I have been playing at and $120, $50/50/50, $150, and $250s? They have these big 'once a money $250' things and I'm not sure if its the same players that play the 'big event' or how much overlap, etc.

In most of the games I have been playing, the majority of players are super fishy - all the limping, etc junk and I just have to deal with the 10% of semi-proficient players. I have also been successful online at STTs and MTTs mostly at $5-$8, sometimes $10.
Boat, do you perhaps live in the New England area? i do and experience the same shiity (novice) play at all our local cardrooms regardless of whether its a 50$ tourney buy-in or a 250$ buy-in... also inelastic when it comes to tourney field size..
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Old 05-04-2017, 12:36 PM   #7
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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So we just play correct poker, and don't adjust between a live $100 and a super high roller?
I'm going to play a balanced strategy as default. If I see my opponent do something then I will bluff more/less as appropriate. However, even if Fedor Holz is sitting across from me, I'm going to stick to my game.
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Old 05-04-2017, 04:16 PM   #8
floattheboat
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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Boat, do you perhaps live in the New England area? i do and experience the same shiity (novice) play at all our local cardrooms regardless of whether its a 50$ tourney buy-in or a 250$ buy-in... also inelastic when it comes to tourney field size..
Yes. What edge % do you estimate you have over these fields specifically?

How much edge is it really possible to have over a live field? What edge do professionals assume they have over certain fields?

Interesting topic of discussion in it's own right IMO.
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Old 05-04-2017, 04:32 PM   #9
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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Yes. What edge % do you estimate you have over these fields specifically?

How much edge is it really possible to have over a live field? What edge do professionals assume they have over certain fields?

Interesting topic of discussion in its own right IMO.
Great area to explore, probably worth a separate post. I'll play agitator, with the following thought about careful math vs. sloppy math:

Most solid players are able (semi-accurately) to gauge their chances of cashing, relative to the rest of the field. Typically 20% to 60% of a tournament's field has no hope of cashing unless they get a ridiculously favorable run of cards. That can't be ruled out, and a few of the phish will go deeper than anyone expected. But overall, savvy players can decide that their chance of cashing is 1.5x the random entrant. Make adjustments for whatever the house takes out of the prize pool, and it's easy to assume that Solid Player has a 30% edge.

Not so! There's a second calculation that has to be done, too. If you make into the 10% to 20% of players who are going to get paid . . . how likely are you to be in the top three, which is where payoffs are concentrated? Lots of Solid Players don't make room in their minds for the notion that they aren't the very best player in the tournament, and that this will curtail their ability to win the biggest prizes.

Say Solid Player has only a 0.7x shot at the top prizes, within the elite community of players who get paid, because a few entrants have even better games than Hero does, and will put their greater skills to work.

Then Solid Player's overall edge has to be scaled down a bit. It's not as simple as 0.7 x 1.5 (before rake), because even min-cash is worth something. But I'm thinking Solid Player's edge may be more like 5% to 10%.

Just a thought.
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Old 05-04-2017, 06:53 PM   #10
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

Continuing discussion of 'figuring out edge' here:

http://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/18.../#post52163836
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Old 05-04-2017, 07:12 PM   #11
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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I'm going to play a balanced strategy as default. If I see my opponent do something then I will bluff more/less as appropriate. However, even if Fedor Holz is sitting across from me, I'm going to stick to my game.
I don't want to argue with you due to history. However, it is fine to play balanced against Fedor Holz. In a $50 or $500 live tournament, the players are playing nowhere near GTO, and it is important to adjust to their style of play and exploit their weaknesses.
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Old 05-06-2017, 06:23 AM   #12
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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I don't want to argue with you due to history. However, it is fine to play balanced against Fedor Holz. In a $50 or $500 live tournament, the players are playing nowhere near GTO, and it is important to adjust to their style of play and exploit their weaknesses.
It's not an argument, we're just discussing our approaches. I'm not even sure we're making points that are very different.

The problem with exploitative play is that you're playing a game where your reads could be wrong, or you end up levelling yourself.

More importantly, I think anyone who is trying to study or improve their game is better off learning a balanced strategy. You need a centre point to your game where you know your fundamentals and then make small adjustments as needed.
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Old 05-06-2017, 08:46 AM   #13
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

Gregz you should try to own people instead of playing balanced approach
It is more fun, more challenging and of course way more profitable especially live
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Old 05-07-2017, 02:15 AM   #14
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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Gregz you should try to own people instead of playing balanced approach
It is more fun, more challenging and of course way more profitable especially live
Nice, thank you. I wish I had thought of that response.

Anyone with experience playing knows you have to adapt to the stakes. It would be totally absurd to play the same way in a high stakes tournament as in a $100 live one. There are completely different styles of play, way of thinking about plays and so on.
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Old 05-07-2017, 06:13 AM   #15
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

^^correct
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Old 05-08-2017, 01:48 AM   #16
floattheboat
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

Can you give perhaps a couple of simple but real examples at say 2-4 different live tournament buy-in levels?
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Old 05-08-2017, 11:42 AM   #17
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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Originally Posted by gregz41 View Post
It's not an argument, we're just discussing our approaches. I'm not even sure we're making points that are very different.

The problem with exploitative play is that you're playing a game where your reads could be wrong, or you end up levelling yourself.

More importantly, I think anyone who is trying to study or improve their game is better off learning a balanced strategy. You need a centre point to your game where you know your fundamentals and then make small adjustments as needed.
I agree with this 100%, and I feel like the improvements in my game the last couple of years have come from playing balanced by default and then adjusting to the players. This is especially true as I've moved up in stakes and started playing higher buy-in tournaments with larger fields. It's hard to play an exploitative style when I don't know what exploits my opponents have.
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Old 05-09-2017, 01:53 PM   #18
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

It is pretty bizarre someone would argue to just play balanced and not adjust to the stakes. In low and mid stakes live, people will be making big mistakes and you have time to study them. So you are missing huge opportunities not adjusting to specific opponents as well as the weaknesses in the way players at that level play in general.

I understand Doug Polk has gotten good results playing balanced rather than exploitative HU against top players. The point is that HU opponents will exploit what you do to exploit them.

I try to balance some things in my play, and it is probably a good way to look at things. However, it seems like a poor approach to play like a bad bot, and totally ignore how your opponents are playing.

That is why I quoted the video before with Doyle saying “you say how can I make that call. How can you make that bet? We are playing poker, not solitaire.” He was calling a push looser, because he knew Antonius was pushing loose. Your decision should be based on your opponent's range, not a theoretically correct range for your opponent.

As to differences in play by stakes, in lower stakes MTTs, if someone makes a 10xBB push, you should probably give it more respect, as they may usually limp or miniraise and only shove strong hands. Whereas, from a reg, anything but a push might mean a trap with a big hand. There is less reraising preflop at lower stakes, so reraises should generally be given more respect.

Lower stakes players tend to want to see a flop, maybe limp/calling, and play relatively fit or fold postflop. They tend not to fold when they have something. At lower stakes, you can often bluff a scare card, and they will fold believing you have what you represent. In general though, it is easier to bluff at higher stakes, but the bluffs need to be more sophisticated.

I could go on and on, but it is a different game at different stakes in cash as well, and in other games than NLHE played fixed limit, pot limit, or whatever. In general, higher stakes games are tighter and more aggressive. At lower stakes, you go for value more. At higher stakes, there is more playing for blinds and antes, and you need to use more sophisticated plays.
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Old 05-09-2017, 02:40 PM   #19
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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I wouldn't change my approach at any buy in.
This.
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Old 05-09-2017, 02:42 PM   #20
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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It's not an argument, we're just discussing our approaches. I'm not even sure we're making points that are very different.

The problem with exploitative play is that you're playing a game where your reads could be wrong, or you end up levelling yourself.

More importantly, I think anyone who is trying to study or improve their game is better off learning a balanced strategy. You need a centre point to your game where you know your fundamentals and then make small adjustments as needed.
And this.
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Old 05-09-2017, 03:02 PM   #21
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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This.
So you play the same way in a live $1/2 NL game as and online $25/50 NL game? It doesn't matter than you have a bunch of limpers who will call a 10xBB raise in live 1/2? You just play balanced and ignore that?
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Old 05-09-2017, 03:16 PM   #22
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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So you play the same way in a live $1/2 NL game as and online $25/50 NL game? It doesn't matter than you have a bunch of limpers who will call a 10xBB raise in live 1/2? You just play balanced and ignore that?
This sub-forum is about Midstakes tournaments.
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Old 05-09-2017, 08:33 PM   #23
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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This sub-forum is about Midstakes tournaments.
I was choosing an extreme example to illustrate the point. Generally, the play is more loose/passive in a $15 online than a $50. In a $15, you can look to get paid off with big hands early and play more aggressively late. There are various other adjustments.

There is a reason people use hand tracking software and notes. I don't know who said you should ignore how the table and players or playing and just play balanced.

In live low-mid stakes live, you should be taking note of how every player is playing and looking to exploit the weaknesses in the players, the table as a whole, and how you expect players at those stakes to play.
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Old 05-10-2017, 10:14 AM   #24
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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I was choosing an extreme example to illustrate the point. Generally, the play is more loose/passive in a $15 online than a $50. In a $15, you can look to get paid off with big hands early and play more aggressively late. There are various other adjustments.

There is a reason people use hand tracking software and notes. I don't know who said you should ignore how the table and players or playing and just play balanced.

In live low-mid stakes live, you should be taking note of how every player is playing and looking to exploit the weaknesses in the players, the table as a whole, and how you expect players at those stakes to play.
Yes and, although I don't want to speak for Gregz41, I believe he was making a generalization that a person should develop a solid understanding of the fundamentals before they start trying to adjust their play or rely excessively on their ability to "read" other people. I agree with that statement and I also think many players don't develop those skills as much as they should.

Sooo, Im gonna go ahead and stick with my liking of his statement. If youre looking for more insight into what he meant by it, perhaps you should be asking him?
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Old 05-16-2017, 01:58 PM   #25
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Re: Live - Differences in Difficulty of Higher Stakes

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before they start trying to adjust their play or rely excessively on their ability to "read" other people
I think maybe you're confusing "reading" people and exploitative play as there is a difference. You can also play exploitatively while using solid fundamentals.
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