Average Poker is Losing Poker.
After starting this post I soon realized this will need to be broken into parts. So let’s call this Part 1.
Being average is unacceptable and I believe the same holds true for any games of variance.
You don’t hear much about an average tightrope walker, an average brain surgeon . These skills may be more exciting or critical for mankind but what I’m trying to get at is that in some occupations being average is not going to cut it . Poker, Sports Betting, Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) are all games where just being average is not good enough to win in the long term . Given enough time every average player will end up a loser and broke. I’m not trying to be the barer of bad news or say that it doesn’t take a lot of work to be an average player .
I am not not trying to be a dream killer , I am just telling the cold hard truth. You must have the dedication and skill to be rise above the average player pool to win money in the long-term. Even the above average player will a slightly winning player given enough time. This is if we assume this player follows correct bankroll management. To be a consistent winner long-term takes study , hours and hours at the table or calculating stats , building line-ups, and never deviating from your bankroll management system . Another thing to consider is that There is no practice poker or sports betting. So to learn your craft you will likely exchange sums of money at the tables or to the bookies or online sites while you play the better or veteran players in order to hopefully learn from them . This is a tradeoff that myself and everyone that came before you has made and a sacrifice you must be willing to accept to become a winning player at the card tables or which ever game of probabilities that you have chosen to play. There are the “play money” games, but I haven’t seen or heard of any upstart from play money to real money .
Before we dive into all of ways the top minds think you can set yourself apart and be on your way to “the grind”. I think you should stop and ask yourself something important that is not discussed much. Answer truthfully !
Why do you play this game?
Do you play for the social interaction? If you are playing to chat and discuss the week’s events on Friday night then you are winning! What is important to you is no the money and thus your winning already
Do you play to relieve stress or because you’re bored and just passing time ?
Does setting up a DFS lineup or putting $100 down on your favorite team make the game more enjoyable to watch regardless if you win or loose ? (ofcourse it’s better the times you win but you see where I am going) . If so then you are already winner. you’re exchanging money or EV for entertainment or recreation and that is probably the best approach for most in my opinion.
However if you’re playing your chosen game for monetary gain and/ or a source of income you will find that this goal is much harder to achieve than you might think.
So with that out of the way we are going to focus on long term winners and how your should plan on being one of them . There are lots winning strategies out available from winning payers and if followed can lead you to become an great or even world class player given enough time. So why isn’t everyone just doing it then ? I assume this question would be answered 100 different ways If you were to ask 100 professionals . Subscribe to my blog and we will will give you the tools to allow you the to answer this yourself.
Why would I decide to write something that may discourage new players from joining the game, or possibly make a long-term loser reconsider ? I have my links making me a few dollars and I offer coaching? I think it is I just because I wish someone would have given me this information when I started playing and had filled me with the right expectations. With the advent of Spin-n-Go, Jackpot Poker, Million $ winners advertised by the big DFS sites I believe now more than ever the new players may be getting the impression that you can walk into poker and win the big jackpot prize and walk out a Chris MoneyMaker at the end of the year. I had this mind-set when I started over 15 years ago. This lotto ticket mindset will get you nowhere in poker or Daily Fantasy Sports or any other wagering game that requires skill. I will follow-up in my next blog entry with some great information that winning players use to gain an edge and why if it is out there why isn’t everyone using it to win . For now don’t listen to the “Expert” at the other side of the table tell you he is making a living playing 50NL or playing $5 SITnGos ,or $5 GPPs or MTTs. Here is a link to how even the best go broke when they forget about the basics of how to be a winning player.
I will be creating a new page with links to some of the best paths I believe will get you winning and stay winning along with my personal take on each. These will only be offered to subscribers to my NoodletheRiver Blog.
Short ramble and what is new with Noodle.
This month and start of the year has been a wild ride for me. I ended my last blog thanking all of the people who had helped me the year before. I continue to work with these guys and see how fortunate I am to have been chosen to be a part of this group. I also realize the amount of work and dedication it takes to take to make this work. What am I talking about? You can go to http://www.twitch.tv/noodletheriver to see my new streaming channel. To see the entrire staff of amazing poker playets I am now working with go to http://www.twitch.tv/heartbeatpoker. If you’re familiar with poker or online poker and the World Series of Poker you should be familiar with these names: AlSpath the poker insider, PokerSchoolOnline coaches, Dave ‘TheLangolier’ Roemer, Mattias Andersson 8th place in the WSOP, Toma or “Afro Samurai” well known on the live poker circuit, Ohpleez -highly sought-after online multi-table tournament player , and myself NoodleTheRiver online multi table tournament player and short handed PLO and PLO8 player.
So not only have I started broadcasting my poker playing online for others to view I will need to become an online personality that is entertaining to watch. That would be the easy part except that I must compete with some of the best players online at the tables and for air time while at the same time learn the ins and outs of Twitch.tv. Oh and deal with the day-to-day politics of the business side of Poker (YUCK). This has left me with little time for the projects that I want to complete which I have not finished. PLOPLAYERS.COM and DailyRotoGolf.com are my projects which I’m really looking forward to. I believe little or nothing on DFS GOLF is out there and this void needs to be filled . I talked to some of the great online PLO players and they were all more than willing to assist me in getting PLO Players up and running. The good thing about the poker community for the most part is that they will bend over backwards to help a fellow player whether it be a few dollars here , a call up just to talk when you’re having a bad run, give you honest criticism on your play when you’re confused or just be your friend and someone to talk to about poker when there’s nobody else to talk to about it. In the DFS community I haven’t found that to be the case so much I believe that this would greatly improve the game as it would make it more transparent where players can talk openly about the way they feel about the games. I watched the interview with Ed Miller the other day on the Jonathan Little show and then when I went to go research him because he’s one of my favorite players I saw that he was very much into Daily Fantasy Sports . I wonder if I just send him an email and ask “hey I know you don’t know who I am but I would like to have your ear for about 30 minutes and then you can come on my twitch channel and describe daily fantasy sports even though you’re mostly known for your poker playing?” Do you think he would come on? Well there’s one thing I’ve learned playing poker and in life and it is it you never get anywhere if you don’t ask. If somebody’s beating you on the other side of the table continuously then after the games are over, there is no shame in shaking the guy’s hand and asking if they would mind giving pointers . Poker players in general have large egos and are normally happy for another player to seek their advice. This is one of the better pieces of advice I can give you and probably one of the pieces that set apart winners from the average player. Winning players are not afraid to ask when they are wrong or being outmatched and where to go to ask for help.
More to come in next post. Youtube playlists – Twitch schedules – DFS blogs you should check out.
Good luck guys – Noodle
Will leave you with a story that I read the other day going back through some old poker books I hadn’t read in a bit and after some research see that it has made it’s way online to several sites.
Anyway Enjoy —–
“Don’t quit yet. Just let the dog die.” –
A story told by Doyle Brunson
Ever hear of a game called Kansas City?
It’s a form of five-card draw lowball where the worst conventional poker hand wins. The “best” hand you can get is 7-5-4-3-2 of at least two different suits. You don’t want straights or flushes, because those are high-ranking poker hands and, therefore, poor in Kansas City (also known as Deuce-to-Seven).
Anyway, back in the 1970s there was a lot of Kansas City played, especially along the Southern poker circuit. One of the games was in Sam’s basement, but we all tended to avoid those Thursday and Saturday night sessions whenever anything else was available.
The reason for our reluctance to attend Sam’s poker game was Sam himself. It was a reasonable size game where one or two thousand won or lost was within the expected range. What we didn’t like was Sam’s habit of quitting his own game anytime he was winning big
Now, I believe a player has the right to quit a poker game anytime he feels like it. You don’t need an excuse and none should be demanded. But, you know, the host of the game has a different responsibility. It’s rude for him to win and quit early like Sam did.
Even more annoying, he made excuses each time he quit. And they weren’t very good ones. Once he pretended that he was having an “ulcer attack,” but weirdly he grabbed his head to demonstrate his agony. Sometimes he’d not only quit but send the rest of the players home early. I guess that’s about as impolite as you can get in the book of poker etiquette.
On this particular night, he was winning again. Oddly, he tapped a can on a pipe above his head. We asked him what he was doing and he just said, “It was just an accident.”
But, sure enough, a minute later his wife Linda comes tripping downstairs on queue and yells, “Honey, Ruffian just brought home a bad hot dog and ate it. He’s really sick. We need to rush him to the vet.” She winks at him secretly, but most of us saw it.
So, Sam looks real concerned about his dog, but it’s bad acting. He says this is his last hand. Well, like the improbable script from some bad movie, I’m dealt the very best Kansas City hand possible: 7-5-4-3-2. I bet $15, Sam raises $40, and I re-raise $100. He calls and draws one card. OK, so I think about this and decide to set a trap. I check.
He bets $1,000, so I raise the rest of the money he has in front of him — about $2,000. Poor Sam. He’s made 7-6-4-3-2, the second-best possible hand.
After he loses, his wife wraps her arm around him in sympathy, but she doesn’t seem sufficiently in tune with his misery. It had been the biggest pot ever lost in Sam’s basement game.
Again she winks at her husband and says, “We really need to take care of Ruffian.”
“Not now! Sell me some of them chips, Doyle,” he demands, extracting $500 from his pocket.
Now Linda looks confused. “Should I take Ruffian to the doctor now?” she persists.
That’s when Sam completely loses his composure. “Linda! Get out of here and let the dog die!” he screams.
Word of this event spread and for many months after that, whenever a player prepared to leave, someone would invariably say, “Don’t quit yet. Just let the dog die.”
Also published on Medium.