Am I playing too low stakes?

    • football123
      football123
      Basic
      Joined: 13.03.2013 Posts: 31
      I play mostly $1/$2 because I've only been playing as my primary source of income for a couple months and I put a lot of my bankroll into starting another business to compensate for the swings.

      As my game has gotten better and I've learned more I've become less profitable. I'm a LAG player and I like to see a lot of flops. I generally showdown very strong hands. My problem is when I choose to bluff I just can't believe how much these guys overplay their hands. I look to make big bluffs when I have a dead read on someone and I have position.

      For example if someone makes a preflop raise that would be consistent with them having AQ, AJ, or A10 and I call with something like 4's. If the flop comes with something like A :spade: 7 :spade: 8 :diamond: and he leads out representing aces which I'm sure he has based on how I've seen him play them before I'll call because if a 9, a :spade: or an 8 peels off I can represent a straight, flush or a set.

      So we'll say a 6 :spade: peels off, and he leads out still representing a middling ace I'll put in a big raise and without fail he'll call. I change gears a lot and mix up my betting patterns and I know these guys aren't good enough to have a dead read on me.

      Then the river comes with an 8 :club: they'll either check or lead out, if they lead out I'll put in a big raise, they'll call and turn over the AJ off, if they check it I'll make at least a pot sized bet and they'll call and turn over that middling Ace that I thought they had. I just don't understand what goes through these guys heads there's nothing that I'm representing that they could possibly beat. If they pay any attention to showdowns they'll know that 9 10 is well within my range and so is suited 45, the worst hand anyone could possibly think I'm representing is is AK.

      If you look at it street by street any intellegent player would put me on a straight or flush draw most likely on the flop (I won't stick around to bluff most of the time if a pot sized pot bet is made on the flop because, then there's a better chance they made two pair or a set of sevens or eights). The turn card would have completed both my draws so when I raise them on the turn the range of hands they should put me on is a straight, a flush, or maybe I slow played a set or two pair on the flop. On the river the only hand they can beat is sixes and nines which would have been counterfited by the second 8 giving them two pair, but not in anyway actually improving their situation, that hand is not in my range and it's highly unlikely that's what I have.

      The only hands that anyone would conclude I have based on my river bet is 8s full of 7s, a straight, a flush, 7s full of 8s, or 6s full of 8s. This is keeping in mind that I'm not bluffing at every pot I just pick a couple good spots throughout the course of a session, and I haven't and never would over play an under pocket pair like that, I more than likely would have 3 bet pre-flop with JJ-KK and on a board like that it would be insane to think that any of those hands are good. I feel that I would be more successful at higher stakes because I have a better idea what a smart player is thinking and I just can't understand someone treating an Ace with 3rd or 4th kicker like it's the stone cold nuts.
  • 11 replies
    • EnterG
      EnterG
      Bronze
      Joined: 26.01.2010 Posts: 632
      Hit the "enter" button sometimes m8 when you post sth .
      Especially when your post is big :rolleyes:
    • TinoLaan
      TinoLaan
      Bronze
      Joined: 12.10.2011 Posts: 6,411
      +1, definitely hit Enter every once in a while ;)

      This is one of those cases of "move up to where they respect your raises".

      Which is ridiculous.

      If you know players are calling down light, don't bluff them light. It's as simple as that. If you know you can't get them to fold a pair of aces, don't even bother trying to bluff them off it. Rather, value bet against them when you have a strong hand.

      If you're up against a fish, just play pretty straightforward. Don't try any fancy moves.

      If you do want to move up, make sure you have the proper BR to do so. Moving up just because the players are better on higher limits is a terrible thing to do. First of all you'll be underrolled, second of all you're playing better players. Why would you "move up to where they respect your raises" when there's plenty of fish to take advantage of at your current limit?

      If you can't beat the fish, then that's a problem in your game, not in the game of the fish. Fix your own leaks first, and don't play higher limits than you are rolled for.
    • football123
      football123
      Basic
      Joined: 13.03.2013 Posts: 31
      The BR is my problem in moving up right now. I have always had a tough time playing with bad players because it's just not my style to sit back and wait for a monster and only play then, maybe I'm giving these guys too much credit but I would think even a dumb player would realize that when i was in a pot I had to be super strong. Also when I did have a monster I'd need someone else to hit a moderately strong hand to get any money out of it. It's tough for me to play ABC poker because I give other players too much credit and I think that they must understand what's going on around them much better than they actually do. Because of this when I have an opportunity like this I just make the correct play because I assume they'll understand what my play means. I just have an incredibly tough time understanding what their thinking could possibly be in a lot of situations.
    • football123
      football123
      Basic
      Joined: 13.03.2013 Posts: 31
      Originally posted by TinoLaan
      +1, definitely hit Enter every once in a while ;)

      This is one of those cases of "move up to where they respect your raises".

      Which is ridiculous.

      If you know players are calling down light, don't bluff them light. It's as simple as that. If you know you can't get them to fold a pair of aces, don't even bother trying to bluff them off it. Rather, value bet against them when you have a strong hand.

      If you're up against a fish, just play pretty straightforward. Don't try any fancy moves.

      If you do want to move up, make sure you have the proper BR to do so. Moving up just because the players are better on higher limits is a terrible thing to do. First of all you'll be underrolled, second of all you're playing better players. Why would you "move up to where they respect your raises" when there's plenty of fish to take advantage of at your current limit?

      If you can't beat the fish, then that's a problem in your game, not in the game of the fish. Fix your own leaks first, and don't play higher limits than you are rolled for.

      I am still beating the fish and im still profitable, but not as much as when I was a worse player. I had the same thing happen when I started playing 25 NL and got better, 50 NL, and got better, and 100NL and got better and I was successful when I moved up. Trouble is BR because I put 75% of it into my side business.
    • DaPhunk
      DaPhunk
      Bronze
      Joined: 01.03.2008 Posts: 2,805
      Forgive the comment OP but something doesn't feel like it adds up to me:

      You say you play 1/2 NL as your main source of income but your whole post sounds like a relatively new player to the game who is playing a very maniacal style and does not have much experience.

      I've seen quite a few posts on the forums saying things like "why do my bluffs never work? I only play 50% of my hands and bluff really scary boards". There may be a written out hand example rather than a proper hand-history and in general from the tone of writing you get a feeling there is a misunderstanding of variance in poker and oftentimes how their range is perceived.

      In order to rectify this effect, I would suggest posting some info on how many hands you have played at each stake with some basic stats and win-rates along with your proposed BRM. A nicely converted hand-history wouldn't go amiss either.
    • DukeXIII
      DukeXIII
      Bronze
      Joined: 09.12.2010 Posts: 173
      ++2 DapPhunk

      Dude just cut the crap with the whole business thing.

      I quote DaPhunk

      ''You say you play 1/2 NL as your main source of income but your whole post sounds like a relatively new player to the game who is playing a very maniacal style and does not have much experience.''

      If you want to learn you need to start from the beginning and don 't be ashame for this. So NL2 (which 90% is your real level) is a good start.


      Good Luck
    • football123
      football123
      Basic
      Joined: 13.03.2013 Posts: 31
      Originally posted by DaPhunk
      Forgive the comment OP but something doesn't feel like it adds up to me:

      You say you play 1/2 NL as your main source of income but your whole post sounds like a relatively new player to the game who is playing a very maniacal style and does not have much experience.

      I've seen quite a few posts on the forums saying things like "why do my bluffs never work? I only play 50% of my hands and bluff really scary boards". There may be a written out hand example rather than a proper hand-history and in general from the tone of writing you get a feeling there is a misunderstanding of variance in poker and oftentimes how their range is perceived.

      In order to rectify this effect, I would suggest posting some info on how many hands you have played at each stake with some basic stats and win-rates along with your proposed BRM. A nicely converted hand-history wouldn't go amiss either.
      I know I probably should have, but I never got any software to analyze my play and since I started playing $1/$2 I've been playing live exclusively. I can tell you I don't play anywhere near 50% of my hands. I play between 20% and 30%. I'm new to poker in the sense that I've only been depending on it for income for a couple months, but I've been playing all my life. I definitely pick a spot or two over a long session to put a big bluff with air, most of the time I get someone to lay down the better hand, but if they don't I get the maniac table image, tighten down, and tend to get a lot of action on my big hands. My BR management is 50 BI's before I move up (I didn't put that into practice until I hit 100NL).
    • DaPhunk
      DaPhunk
      Bronze
      Joined: 01.03.2008 Posts: 2,805
      Originally posted by football123
      I've been playing live exclusively.
      This would explain a lot. Unfortunately I can't help much as I do not know very much at all about live play except that it is rather different to online play, and people normally say the skill level is lower. A few years ago they even went as far as to say NL100 live = NL10 online.

      I cannot say exclusively how much truth there is in that as I have only played live 3 times or so at NL100 and 200 but the tendency definitely did seem to be towards seeing a large number of multi-way flops, making aggressive read-based postflop moves and in general just calling down rather lighter than the garden variety nit I had become used to.

      Given the very low number of hands per hour and the liveplay reputation for being softer than online, I would say move up as quickly as possible to increase your hourly rate :D 25 hands per hour really is going to hamper your earning potential unless you absolutely crush the games.

      (for reference, an online sicko at $1/2 might make 8bb/100. If he only played 25 hands an hour that would be just $4 per hour)
    • Rogier
      Rogier
      Coach
      Coach
      Joined: 11.08.2006 Posts: 13,212
      it's hard to fold top pair if you're seeing the flop with 5 hands per hour, thus only getting toppair twice/hour :P

      tl;dr no one folds live, lowest stakes in a casino are not that different from lowest stakes online
    • bennisboy
      bennisboy
      Bronze
      Joined: 11.04.2011 Posts: 711
      If you know people aren't going to be folding top pair, why try to get them to fold it?

      Means your "good move" is not a good move

      Poker is about adjusting to your opponents, so that's what you gotta do!
    • luizsilveira
      luizsilveira
      Bronze
      Joined: 27.11.2010 Posts: 2,320
      If they never fold any top pair to your obvious flush or straight, call with suited connectors, make a flush or straight, profit. Easy game.

      What you are saying is basically: "rain keeps falling from the sky and I don't know what to do, I wish it came from the floor up but it never does". Welp, next time bring an umbrella.