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Old 09-28-2010, 07:34 AM   #26
Jen-Sung Tan
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Thumbs up Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

Quote:
Originally Posted by *Split* View Post
“Why do we care about combos?”:

Many people do not fully understand combos, yet alone thinking in terms of combos while making real-time poker decisions. Thinking about combos can help us visualize a player's range, which ultimately can help us with hand reading. When we think about reading combos we are considering the detailed range of hands that a player can have.

Postflop we want to be thinking about combos to really nail down our opponent's range. Once we are able to appropriately assign a range of hands, we will able to take more optimal lines postflop. While we should use our opponent's postflop actions to help us visualize range more correctly, we can use combos to help give backing to our lines.
  • Pocket Pairs: 6 combos of missed sets, 3 combos of sets, 1 combo of quads if the board is paired
  • Draws: are almost never as big of a concern as you think they are
  • Big card boards: Say the board is Axx, it drops their possible combos per Ax hand from 16 down to 12
  • 2pairs?: Say the board is AQx, it drops their possible combos of AQ from 16 down to 9
  • Think about PF: Hand reading should be linear and logical.
  • Actions indicate range: The actions that a player makes should give us hints about their specific range.
The Cliff Notes Conclusion:
  • Think about combos when hand reading
  • Don't be a results-oriented fish and think you should have folded when you know damn well you never should have
  • Allocate for “idiocy” in combos, especially against dumb-aggressive and/or fishy opponents
  • Understand why fearing draws is silly
  • Understand how textures effect combos
  • Grind some of this work off the table and internalize it
Enjoy, and let's have a conversation
Would first like to express gratitude, as your contribution is much appreciated. It has enlightened the importance of Combos and the fundamental flaw of not considering them. Have always been alert to unlikelihood of draws in relation to calling ranges but was unable to express that understanding mathematically until now.

What websites would you recommend for analyzing combos?

Last edited by Jen-Sung Tan; 09-28-2010 at 07:50 AM.
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Old 09-28-2010, 12:14 PM   #27
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

I think I need to buy a deck of cards and actually do it visually cos I have difficulty wrapping my head around this.
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Old 09-28-2010, 12:17 PM   #28
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

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Originally Posted by JustinJude View Post
I think I need to buy a deck of cards and actually do it visually cos I have difficulty wrapping my head around this.
I recommend Flopzilla, which produced the graphics in Split's OP.
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Old 09-28-2010, 01:56 PM   #29
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

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Originally Posted by mtagliaf View Post
I recommend Flopzilla, which produced the graphics in Split's OP.
I'll check it out, thanks.
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Old 09-28-2010, 02:07 PM   #30
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

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I'll check it out, thanks.
here is a video i did on how to use flopzilla if that helps you
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Old 09-28-2010, 02:14 PM   #31
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

Quote:
Originally Posted by JustinJude View Post
I think I need to buy a deck of cards and actually do it visually cos I have difficulty wrapping my head around this.
imo, everything that isn't a pair is very easy. For instance:

Say the flop is K94 and we have 55. If we want to figure out how many combos of KQ our opponent has, we take the 4 remaining Qs in the deck and times it by the the 3 remaining Ks in the deck (4*3 = 12).

If we want to figure out how many combos of K9 he has, then we take the 3 reamining Ks in the deck and times it by the 3 remaining 9s in the deck (3*3 = 9)

If the board is Jc8c4s and we think our opponent would only have flush draws that are AQs or better, there is one combo of AcQc, and one combo of AcKc. Making for 2 FD combos. If we had Ac7s in our hand, then there are no logical flush draws in our opponent's range

Say we have AK and the board comes AT5. We think our opponent would call PF with AT+ (suited and off), then do this:

AK = 2*3 = 6 combos
AQ = 2*4 = 8 combos
AJ = 2*4 = 8 combos
AT = 2*3 = 6 combos

hopefully this gets you in the right direction...
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Old 09-28-2010, 02:59 PM   #32
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

Cheers Split, I'll bookmark this COTW and work on my combotency.
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Old 09-28-2010, 07:08 PM   #33
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

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Originally Posted by mtagliaf View Post
thanks Split. I am very new to combos and can't possibly do them in real time yet, but I'm trying.

But then I run into a hand like this one, where there are only three (logical) combos of hands beat us, and we have to fold anyway, and I get ticked off (see thread for me ranting, lol).
The key is not just how many combos beat you, but how many combos you beat. Against this person, I don't see a lot of combos he plays this way that beat you. So you're not getting the odds to call because you don't beat much of his range.
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Old 09-28-2010, 09:25 PM   #34
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

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The key is not just how many combos beat you, but how many combos you beat. Against this person, I don't see a lot of combos he plays this way that beat you. So you're not getting the odds to call because you don't beat much of his range.
a new way for me to look at it, thank you much.
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Old 09-29-2010, 01:23 PM   #35
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

I will now look out for hero calls for the next entire week cuz of this damn COTW
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Old 09-29-2010, 06:52 PM   #36
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

Great post, ty.

Just started analyzing my own key hands after every session, and along with assigning ranges and determining my EQ, this will help my understand how big every part of his range is, combinatorically speaking.
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Old 09-30-2010, 01:41 PM   #37
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

Quote:
Originally Posted by *Split* View Post
imo, everything that isn't a pair is very easy. For instance:

Say the flop is K94 and we have 55. If we want to figure out how many combos of KQ our opponent has, we take the 4 remaining Qs in the deck and times it by the the 3 remaining Ks in the deck (4*3 = 12).

If we want to figure out how many combos of K9 he has, then we take the 3 reamining Ks in the deck and times it by the 3 remaining 9s in the deck (3*3 = 9)

If the board is Jc8c4s and we think our opponent would only have flush draws that are AQs or better, there is one combo of AcQc, and one combo of AcKc. Making for 2 FD combos. If we had Ac7s in our hand, then there are no logical flush draws in our opponent's range

Say we have AK and the board comes AT5. We think our opponent would call PF with AT+ (suited and off), then do this:

AK = 2*3 = 6 combos
AQ = 2*4 = 8 combos
AJ = 2*4 = 8 combos
AT = 2*3 = 6 combos

hopefully this gets you in the right direction...
this just made my life so much easier. you're a beast, split.
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Old 09-30-2010, 03:31 PM   #38
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

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this just made my life so much easier. you're a beast, split.
glad i could help =)
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Old 09-30-2010, 11:02 PM   #39
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

Great stuff Split. Well done.
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Old 09-30-2010, 11:41 PM   #40
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

thanks to those with the kind words =)
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Old 10-01-2010, 06:36 AM   #41
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

I hope Split does not mind me putting this in here and hope it is educational.

Hand Combination Exercise

So I searched thru my DB and I found this for you guys.

Villian 23/16 3bet% 7 400 hands
Note: Villian has 3bet 99 in the past vs Hero

Below is a classic hand combination and Expected Value problem you will be confronted at the table.
Ignore whether Hero played the hand well or not.

Work out how many combos of splits & bluffs vs Full houses.

Can Hero call or not?

You should be able to work this thing out at the table.


Poker Stars $0.05/$0.10 No Limit Hold'em - 8 players
The Official 2+2 Hand Converter Powered By DeucesCracked.com

Hero (UTG+1): $10.00
MP1: $8.50
MP2: $10.85
CO: $10.71
BTN: $9.52
SB: $10.05
BB: $10.02
UTG: $10.88

Pre Flop: ($0.15) Hero is UTG+1 with K K
1 fold, Hero raises to $0.30, 5 folds, BB raises to $0.90, Hero calls $0.60

Flop: ($1.85) T A Q (2 players)
BB bets $1, Hero calls $1

Turn: ($3.85) T (2 players)
BB checks, Hero checks

River: ($3.85) J (2 players)
BB bets $8.12 all in, Hero ?

p.s. I am not gonna help ya with this........
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Old 10-01-2010, 11:13 AM   #42
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

10 boats/quads, 6 AK 1 KK, 16 99s if they are in his range.
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Old 10-01-2010, 11:59 AM   #43
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

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10 boats/quads, 6 AK 1 KK, 16 99s if they are in his range.
16 99s? don't you mean 6?
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Old 10-01-2010, 12:39 PM   #44
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

yeah that's right 6 obv.
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Old 10-01-2010, 12:40 PM   #45
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

So that's 10 hands that beat you, 7 splits and 6 bluffs.

That's if we give him the range of AK+ 99+.

It's a fold i think.
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Old 10-01-2010, 02:48 PM   #46
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

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Originally Posted by DonkDonkDonkDonk View Post
So that's 10 hands that beat you, 7 splits and 6 bluffs.

That's if we give him the range of AK+ 99+.

It's a fold i think.
One problem I see, AK, 99+ is only 4%, this villain's 3bet percentage is 7%. If we start adding the AQs/AJs/ATs, that's going to affect the combos.
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Old 10-01-2010, 04:41 PM   #47
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

It is also the question how reliable the 7% number is.
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Old 10-01-2010, 04:53 PM   #48
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

He is 3betting an UTG+1 open from the big blind... I don't know if he is 3betting all his range, I don't even think AK, 99+ is accurate.
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Old 10-01-2010, 09:20 PM   #49
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

Bear these things in mind.

1) If he has a wide value range for 3betting PF - he will not always get to the river this way. So of course - you can look at total number of possible combinations but some of the time he will check give up 99 sometimes he will bet/flop try and get to showdown. Thus the calculation is usually - if he always has all the full houses and given it is nano-stakes poker and a board that smashes our range given Kx is going to be there alot so we can expect him to monkey shove overbet given 10NL call a straight here almost always. So all FH are likely there - but not all bluffs are there be it AQ AJ or 99 - given it is a 3bet pot on a 4 straight board in a game where players dont often fold 5 card hands - so he prolly does not bluff always......thus if they are there they ar e not all there - so frequency of bluffs has to be accounted for when assigning hand combos.
2) Our EV - if he never bluffs - of a call is for a split. Which means our 0EV is not 50%.

So if
x= 0 or times we lose
y= 0.5 or times we split
z = 1 times we win (he is bluffing)

Then the proportions are different from a stardard EV calc.

Standard visualisation would be

XXXZZZZ more combos of we win than lose + existing pot = +EV
Here e.g. (note not exact combos)
XXXXYYYYZZ
4 combos we lose
4 combos we split
2 combos we win

So I suggest relook at frequencies then apply the visualisation technique.
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Old 10-01-2010, 10:08 PM   #50
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Re: COTW: Thinking About Combos

I was working under the assumption that he b/c/os with his whole 3b range. I obv never see him do this with 99.
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