Thursday, September 1, 2011

Analysis on Courtney Gee's Poker Update

This came up in my radar this morning and wanted to write something about this before I start my day off-- Downswings Make Poker Not Fun – Courtney Gee Poker Update

First, take a look at this--
I didn’t get the chance to post last week because I was quite busy, so today I will report on two weeks of poker. You will soon see that things didn’t change much, though, and that I kept losing money! Here are the unfortunate numbers:

August 15th to 21th:
# MTTs: 168
Hours: 26.5
Net result: -$2,125.99

August 22nd to 28th:
# MTTs: 100
Hours: 21
Net result: -$2,335.87

That brings my total MTT losses since August 6th to $9,098. Yikes.
That if it is possible to lose this much money in less than a month, then the opposite side of the stick tells me that, (with a good method) anyone can make that much in profit as well. If you lived in Manila, US$2,000 will go a long way in 30 days.

My next question then is, how much is Courtney's bankroll? Looking at the dollars that she gave away in those weeks, she probably has a bankroll of about $100,000. Most unlikely, the minimum backroll she is working with would be about $20,000. Unlikely because, if you are losing 10% of your bankroll in a week means you are not going to last long in this business.

Second thing I noticed is this--
I can’t really disagree with the latter statement. We are obviously much less likely to endure downswings that big when we are playing well. The problem is that playing well all the time is extremely difficult. We are human and bad days are going to happen once in a while.
That part where Courtney says, "playing well all the time is extremely difficult" I disagree with. It is easy to play well. It's simple. Define how a good poker player would play, then behave that way in every way. Where she is failing at is that she has expectations. She wants to see a = b. That playing well equals making money. It's not that easy. Why? Variance. No matter how well you play, the fish will get the nuts on the river now and then.

After playing hundreds of thousands of hands, I know that variance works both ways. If fish gets the nuts on the river every now and then, I too, will have that. What is importnat is that I keep my expenses small and the profits will take care of itself in the long term.

Here is strike three--
In somewhat of an example, this past Friday I was running really badly when calling people down. People’s lines just kept making no sense so I just kept calling, and they somehow had it every single time. This caused me to unfortunately adjust my calling ranges so that in future hands with similar situations, I didn't call when I should have.
I suspect she's going to showdown with TPTK in a big pot. Two pairs and three of a kinds are also considered marginal hands if villain wants to make a big pot. Winning players know that you never play marginal hands. When you make a set or better, you value bet all the way. You never call down a set even if you suspect villain having a bigger hand over you. When you showdown a big hand aggressively, next time the other players see this happen, they will suspect you have a big hand. That is investing in your meta-game.

I am assuming that Courtney is putting a lot of pressure on herself. Making a living as a professional athlete (poker player) and putting yourself out for public scrutiny is not a good combination. Courtney is probably trying too hard to show good results to everyone, that she finds herself playing marginal hands a lot of times hoping to make a big win.

If I were in her spot, I'd rather focus on my stats. Strive to get better W$F, W$SD and WTSD stats. I would invest in my meta-game by playing with villain's perception--manipulating the HUD stats they see of me, and my showdown hands. Notice that a lot of players these days play with tracking software. Use that to your advantage.

But then again, Courtney plays in tournaments. My 'magic' only work in cash games. In fact, I don't know how to finish in the money in that kind of environment. Take everything that I wrote here with a pinch of salt--it was written from a cash player's perspective.

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