Chip leader protecting the short stack on the bubble

    • pzhon
      pzhon
      Bronze
      Joined: 17.06.2010 Posts: 1,151
      How would you handle this situation:

      Blinds 150/300

      CO: 2000
      BTN: 2500
      SB: 8000 bad aggressive reg who tends to make spite calls
      BB: 1000 sitting out

      CO folds, BTN folds, SB folds.

      The chip leader has been pushing very aggressively, has made a crazy 10 bb spite call with J8o, and now folds to the microstack in the BB who is sitting out. From the chat, it is clear that he knows the BB is sitting out, and this is probably not a misclick. In the past, this player has called a 15 bb resteal with 93s.

      What adjustments do you make as the CO or button? Is this strategy for the chip leader effective?
  • 12 replies
    • oblitron
      oblitron
      Bronze
      Joined: 22.01.2010 Posts: 238
      So, either the BB is the SB's actual friend, in which case you have some form of tacit collusion

      or

      you are right about the SB being bad and spiteful because he cares more about preserving the bubble in the hope that CO or BTN will become the bubble boy (because he's mad at one or both of them) and less about growing his own stack. And, if he's that pissed off, I would also expect him to call a push by CO or BTN with any two cards. Hmmm...
    • Chenghao
      Chenghao
      Bronze
      Joined: 04.10.2009 Posts: 274
      Originally posted by pzhon
      How would you handle this situation:

      Blinds 150/300

      CO: 2000
      BTN: 2500
      SB: 8000 bad aggressive reg who tends to make spite calls
      BB: 1000 sitting out

      CO folds, BTN folds, SB folds.

      The chip leader has been pushing very aggressively, has made a crazy 10 bb spite call with J8o, and now folds to the microstack in the BB who is sitting out. From the chat, it is clear that he knows the BB is sitting out, and this is probably not a misclick. In the past, this player has called a 15 bb resteal with 93s.

      What adjustments do you make as the CO or button? Is this strategy for the chip leader effective?
      Put yourself in the chipleader's shoes. If u know that by maintaining the bubble , u force 2 other mid stacks (CO/Btn) to tighten up , wouldn't you do that so that you can steal more of their blinds ? And hence the 2 mid stacks will be forced to give up more marginal spots even spots where they might be slight favorite.

      breaking it down to orbits
      if he takes afk-er's both SB and BB ,
      the bubble will last for 3.3 orbits

      if he takes afk-er's SB only ,
      the bubble will last for 6.6 orbits.

      seems like an advanced idea if he really is thinking that far
    • 8979687
      8979687
      Bronze
      Joined: 11.11.2008 Posts: 2,225
      Speaking about preserving the bubble, It does not mean he is mad at anyone.

      Spite calls aside, by preserving the bubble and having people afraid of busting out knowing
      there is a player sitting out, he can accumulate piles of chips and have a very easy time when
      it does go heads up. He can virtually eliminate both three handed play and heads up play if the
      other 2 stacks are taking it for granted that they are going to end up with 2nd and 3rd allready.

      So yes the strategy for the chip leader is very effective, and with the shortest stack sitting out,
      I don't really know how to adjust, if you get ANY chance whatsoever to act before the other
      mid stack with the big stack folded out then do it, but against a big stack where you have 0
      fold equity then resteals are out IMO.

      So yes the big stracks strategy of keeping the short stack alive is a good one but not spite calling
      and risking chunks of his stack when he is just sitting so comfortable for a win IMO.
    • Chenghao
      Chenghao
      Bronze
      Joined: 04.10.2009 Posts: 274
      Originally posted by 8979687
      Speaking about preserving the bubble, It does not mean he is mad at anyone.

      Spite calls aside, by preserving the bubble and having people afraid of busting out knowing
      there is a player sitting out, he can accumulate piles of chips and have a very easy time when
      it does go heads up. He can virtually eliminate both three handed play and heads up play if the
      other 2 stacks are taking it for granted that they are going to end up with 2nd and 3rd allready.

      So yes the strategy for the chip leader is very effective, and with the shortest stack sitting out,
      I don't really know how to adjust, if you get ANY chance whatsoever to act before the other
      mid stack with the big stack folded out then do it, but against a big stack where you have 0
      fold equity then resteals are out IMO.

      So yes the big stracks strategy of keeping the short stack alive is a good one but not spite calling
      and risking chunks of his stack when he is just sitting so comfortable for a win IMO.
      preserve the smallest stack , steal from the rest as the chip leader
      cos the objective is to mow down the competition and take 1st , not to ITM
    • LgWz
      LgWz
      Black
      Joined: 26.05.2007 Posts: 7,641
      If I'm the BTN I narrow my range and hope the CO blinds out sooner than me. If I'm CO it's gamble time. As the CO you have to act as you're less risk averse if you think the bigstack will always keep the shortstack alive (meaning he can't

      Letting the BB stay alive is a good strategy by the chip leader, BUT I don't see why he would fold this particular hand. I'd shove this one and fold only when shortstack is about to blind out. This should make the other guys even more risk averse in future spots. No reason to miss 450 chips here.
    • Chenghao
      Chenghao
      Bronze
      Joined: 04.10.2009 Posts: 274
      Originally posted by LgWz
      If I'm the BTN I narrow my range and hope the CO blinds out sooner than me. If I'm CO it's gamble time. As the CO you have to act as you're less risk averse if you think the bigstack will always keep the shortstack alive (meaning he can't

      Letting the BB stay alive is a good strategy by the chip leader, BUT I don't see why he would fold this particular hand. I'd shove this one and fold only when shortstack is about to blind out. This should make the other guys even more risk averse in future spots. No reason to miss 450 chips here.
      the 450 chips will be from an inactive player ,
      if i can take 450 chips from an active player , these chips are more valuable then 450 chips from an inactive player

      if i forgo one BB from an inactive player , i gain one more orbit of bubble

      assuming i steal at every other chance , i would have a net gain of 1.5 BB from each of the other active player

      trading one BB from an inactive player for 3 BB from active player ?

      i would make that trade every single day
    • Chenghao
      Chenghao
      Bronze
      Joined: 04.10.2009 Posts: 274
      Originally posted by Chenghao
      Originally posted by LgWz
      If I'm the BTN I narrow my range and hope the CO blinds out sooner than me. If I'm CO it's gamble time. As the CO you have to act as you're less risk averse if you think the bigstack will always keep the shortstack alive (meaning he can't

      Letting the BB stay alive is a good strategy by the chip leader, BUT I don't see why he would fold this particular hand. I'd shove this one and fold only when shortstack is about to blind out. This should make the other guys even more risk averse in future spots. No reason to miss 450 chips here.
      the 450 chips will be from an inactive player ,
      if i can take 450 chips from an active player , these chips are more valuable then 450 chips from an inactive player

      if i forgo one BB from an inactive player , i gain one more orbit of bubble

      assuming i steal at every other chance , i would have a net gain of 1.5 BB from each of the other active player

      trading one BB from an inactive player for 3 BB from active player ?

      i would make that trade every single day
      the assumption is probably that
      1)you are the chip leader
      2) the inactive player will not come back
      3) the two players are playing all in or fold ( and all in with much better hands)
      4) you will be stealing every single hand.
      5) the two other players are willing to sit back till the bubble burst and not play back.
    • 8979687
      8979687
      Bronze
      Joined: 11.11.2008 Posts: 2,225
      Hmm., I wonder then if pushing this hand and carry on abusing but treating the second shortest stack
      as the short stack, and keep the second shortest stack free of pressure would that lock both midstacks
      into a fold to the $$$ mentality?

      So push this hand fold the next hand then push the hand after that? This will keep the CO from calling
      at all and first place is yours if you rinse and repeat.

      Sorry if this is retarded its late I should have slept instead of wrote here. Hence the editing.
    • TheRebuz
      TheRebuz
      Platinum
      Joined: 12.10.2008 Posts: 2,078
      BUBBLE ON 18 PLAYERS SNG 10MIN BB LEVELS 4 ITM

      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      UTG: 3,370.00
      CO: 5,209.00
      Hero (BTN): 15,181.00
      SB: 2,215.00
      BB: 1,025.00

      UTG posts ante 25.00, CO posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, SB posts ante 25.00, BB posts ante 25.00, SB posts SB 200.00, BB posts BB 400.00

      Pre Flop: (725.00) Hero has 9:heart: 5:diamond:

      fold, fold, fold, SB raises to 1,200.00, BB calls 600.00 and is all-in

      Flop: (2125.00, 2 players) A:spade: J:heart: 4:diamond:

      Turn: (2125.00, 2 players) Q:club:

      River: (2125.00, 2 players) 8:diamond:

      SB shows A:diamond: 2:spade: (One Pair, Aces)
      BB shows 9:diamond: T:heart: (Straight, Queen High)
      BB wins 2,125.00


      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      BB: 3,345.00
      UTG: 5,184.00
      Hero (CO): 15,156.00
      BTN: 1,190.00
      SB: 2,125.00

      BB posts ante 25.00, UTG posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, BTN posts ante 25.00, SB posts ante 25.00, SB posts SB 200.00, BB posts BB 400.00

      Pre Flop: (725.00) Hero has A:spade: 8:heart:

      UTG raises to 1,000.00, Hero raises to 15,131.00 and is all-in, fold, fold, fold, fold

      Hero wins 2,725.00


      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      SB: 2,920.00
      BB: 4,159.00
      Hero (UTG): 16,856.00
      CO: 1,165.00
      BTN: 1,900.00

      SB posts ante 25.00, BB posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, CO posts ante 25.00, BTN posts ante 25.00, SB posts SB 200.00, BB posts BB 400.00

      Pre Flop: (725.00) Hero has 3:heart: Q:diamond:

      fold, fold, fold, fold

      BB wins 525.00


      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      BTN: 2,695.00
      SB: 4,459.00
      Hero (BB): 16,831.00
      UTG: 1,140.00
      CO: 1,875.00

      BTN posts ante 25.00, SB posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, UTG posts ante 25.00, CO posts ante 25.00, SB posts SB 200.00, Hero posts BB 400.00

      Pre Flop: (725.00) Hero has Q:club: 4:spade:

      fold, fold, fold, SB calls 200.00, Hero checks

      Flop: (925.00, 2 players) 8:diamond: K:spade: T:club:
      SB checks, Hero checks

      Turn: (925.00, 2 players) 3:diamond:
      SB checks, Hero checks

      River: (925.00, 2 players) 4:heart:
      SB checks, Hero checks

      SB shows T:heart: J:heart: (One Pair, Tens)
      Hero mucks Q:club: 4:spade: (One Pair, Fours)
      SB wins 925.00


      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      CO: 2,670.00
      BTN: 4,959.00
      Hero (SB): 16,406.00
      BB: 1,115.00
      UTG: 1,850.00

      CO posts ante 25.00, BTN posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, BB posts ante 25.00, UTG posts ante 25.00, Hero posts SB 200.00, BB posts BB 400.00

      Pre Flop: (725.00) Hero has 2:spade: K:spade:

      fold, fold, fold, fold

      BB wins 525.00


      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      UTG: 2,645.00
      CO: 4,934.00
      Hero (BTN): 16,181.00
      SB: 1,415.00
      BB: 1,825.00

      UTG posts ante 25.00, CO posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, SB posts ante 25.00, BB posts ante 25.00, SB posts SB 200.00, BB posts BB 400.00

      Pre Flop: (725.00) Hero has Q:diamond: 8:club:

      UTG raises to 2,620.00 and is all-in, fold, fold, fold, fold

      UTG wins 1,125.00


      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      BB: 3,345.00
      UTG: 4,909.00
      Hero (CO): 16,156.00
      BTN: 1,190.00
      SB: 1,400.00

      BB posts ante 25.00, UTG posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, BTN posts ante 25.00, SB posts ante 25.00, SB posts SB 200.00, BB posts BB 400.00

      Pre Flop: (725.00) Hero has Q:diamond: 8:club:

      fold, Hero raises to 6,400.00, fold, fold, fold

      Hero wins 1,125.00


      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      SB: 2,920.00
      BB: 4,884.00
      Hero (UTG): 16,856.00
      CO: 1,165.00
      BTN: 1,175.00

      SB posts ante 25.00, BB posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, CO posts ante 25.00, BTN posts ante 25.00, SB posts SB 200.00, BB posts BB 400.00

      Pre Flop: (725.00) Hero has K:spade: 8:spade:

      Hero raises to 5,600.00, fold, fold, fold, fold

      Hero wins 1,125.00


      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      BTN: 2,695.00
      SB: 4,459.00
      Hero (BB): 17,556.00
      UTG: 1,140.00
      CO: 1,150.00

      BTN posts ante 25.00, SB posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, UTG posts ante 25.00, CO posts ante 25.00, SB posts SB 200.00, Hero posts BB 400.00

      Pre Flop: (725.00) Hero has 4:spade: K:heart:

      fold, fold, fold, fold

      Hero wins 525.00


      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      CO: 2,670.00
      BTN: 4,234.00
      Hero (SB): 17,856.00
      BB: 1,115.00
      UTG: 1,125.00

      CO posts ante 25.00, BTN posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, BB posts ante 25.00, UTG posts ante 25.00, Hero posts SB 200.00, BB posts BB 400.00

      Pre Flop: (725.00) Hero has 5:heart: A:diamond:

      fold, CO raises to 2,645.00 and is all-in, fold, fold, fold

      CO wins 1,125.00


      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      UTG: 3,370.00
      CO: 4,209.00
      Hero (BTN): 17,631.00
      SB: 690.00
      BB: 1,100.00

      UTG posts ante 25.00, CO posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, SB posts ante 25.00, BB posts ante 25.00, SB posts SB 200.00, BB posts BB 400.00

      Pre Flop: (725.00) Hero has 8:heart: Q:diamond:

      fold, fold, Hero raises to 17,606.00 and is all-in, fold, fold

      Hero wins 1,125.00


      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      BB: 3,345.00
      UTG: 4,184.00
      Hero (CO): 18,331.00
      BTN: 465.00
      SB: 675.00

      BB posts ante 25.00, UTG posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, BTN posts ante 25.00, SB posts ante 25.00, SB posts SB 200.00, BB posts BB 400.00

      Pre Flop: (725.00) Hero has 2:diamond: A:diamond:

      fold, Hero raises to 18,306.00 and is all-in, fold, fold, fold

      Hero wins 1,125.00


      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      SB: 2,920.00
      BB: 4,159.00
      Hero (UTG): 19,031.00
      CO: 440.00
      BTN: 450.00

      SB posts ante 25.00, BB posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, CO posts ante 25.00, BTN posts ante 25.00, SB posts SB 200.00, BB posts BB 400.00

      Pre Flop: (725.00) Hero has A:spade: T:heart:

      Hero raises to 19,006.00 and is all-in, fold, fold, fold, fold

      Hero wins 1,125.00


      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      BTN: 2,695.00
      SB: 3,734.00
      Hero (BB): 19,731.00
      UTG: 415.00
      CO: 425.00

      BTN posts ante 25.00, SB posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, UTG posts ante 25.00, CO posts ante 25.00, SB posts SB 200.00, Hero posts BB 400.00

      Pre Flop: (725.00) Hero has 5:diamond: 5:club:

      fold, fold, fold, SB raises to 3,709.00 and is all-in, Hero calls 3,309.00

      Flop: (7543.00, 2 players) 4:club: Q:spade: K:heart:

      Turn: (7543.00, 2 players) A:heart:

      River: (7543.00, 2 players) T:club:

      SB shows A:club: 9:diamond: (One Pair, Aces)
      Hero shows 5:diamond: 5:club: (One Pair, Fives)
      SB wins 7,543.00


      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      CO: 2,670.00
      BTN: 7,543.00
      Hero (SB): 15,997.00
      BB: 390.00
      UTG: 400.00

      CO posts ante 25.00, BTN posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, BB posts ante 25.00, UTG posts ante 25.00, Hero posts SB 200.00, BB posts BB 365.00

      Pre Flop: (690.00) Hero has Q:club: J:spade:

      fold, fold, fold, fold

      BB wins 525.00


      PokerStars - $5+$0.50|200/400 NL (9 max) - Holdem - 5 players
      Hand converted by PokerTracker 3

      UTG: 2,645.00
      CO: 7,518.00
      Hero (BTN): 15,772.00
      SB: 690.00
      BB: 375.00

      UTG posts ante 25.00, CO posts ante 25.00, Hero posts ante 25.00, SB posts ante 25.00, BB posts ante 25.00, SB posts SB 200.00, BB posts BB 350.00

      Pre Flop: (675.00) Hero has 2:diamond: 5:spade:

      fold, fold, fold, SB calls 150.00

      Flop: (825.00, 2 players) 4:spade: J:spade: 2:spade:

      Turn: (825.00, 2 players) A:heart:

      River: (825.00, 2 players) 5:club:

      SB shows 7:diamond: K:diamond: (High Card, Ace)
      BB shows 6:club: Q:diamond: (High Card, Ace)
      SB wins 825.00


      - STACKS BEFORE BUBBLE
      UTG: 3,370.00
      CO: 5,209.00
      Hero (BTN): 15,181.00
      SB: 2,215.00
      BB: 1,025.00

      - STACKS AFTER BUBBLE AND AFTER HERO LOSE FLIP VS 2 BIGGEST STACK INTO THE BUBBLE WITH 55<A9

      SB: 2,620.00
      BB: 7,493.00
      Hero (UTG): 15,747.00
      BTN: 1,140.00

      BEFORE THAT FLIP AND SB GETTING CRAZY WITH A9 SHOVING INTO ME, STACK SITUATION WAS THIS

      BTN: 2,695.00
      SB: 3,734.00
      Hero (BB): 19,731.00
      UTG: 415.00
      CO: 425.00
    • pzhon
      pzhon
      Bronze
      Joined: 17.06.2010 Posts: 1,151
      The BTN and CO in this tournament considered some interesting tactics. The BTN (my student) suggested limping in as a sacrifice of 1 bb to take 1.5 bb away from the player who is sitting out. In the actual tournament, the site's rules allow a player to win while sitting out after posting a blind all-in. When the short stack was finally all-in in the big blind, the CO limped in with JTs, then called a push with a flush draw on a Q53 flop. The BB had QQ, and the chip leader's gutshot with 62 hit to knock both players out, with the CO making the money.

      Whether the big stack's tactics are effective depends on the adjustments of the other players. Some adjustments like sacrificing chips to the chip leader help the chip leader at the expense of the player who is sitting out. Other tactics transfer equity from the chip leader to the player who is sitting out by risking busting out while punishing the chip leader's weak ranges.

      If the chip leader is intentionally folding to the player who is sitting out, then the other players can't coast into the money by playing tightly. This means they are not as risk-averse as they would be if the chip leader had been nicer to the medium stacks.

      I believe that the idea of intentionally prolonging the bubble is so exciting to people that they support it even if it is not correct. I think it is rarely part of the best strategy to pass up sure chips by folding to the player who is sitting out. Taking the blinds later is not guaranteed, and even an 8000-2000 chip lead can be reversed by two showdowns. However, it is a tactic which should be considered, and it could be best against some opponents.
    • alenstrat
      alenstrat
      Bronze
      Joined: 13.03.2009 Posts: 821
      Amazingly interesting. Nice thread.
    • maniac
      maniac
      Bronze
      Joined: 29.03.2006 Posts: 6,545
      please can you give an example for wrong bubble abuse. i know that i can´t abuse it if they call to wide. and if i could´t gain much, its of couse not worth to keep the bubble alive.
      Thus you mention that regs usually tend to abuse to much.
      What thoughts do you think we need to get probably a better decision in the future?