Friday, November 04, 2005

You Want Leaks, I got Leaks Part Two

OK.. Let's continue on with some Leak finding; but first let's review a bit...

Leak #1: I identified that I was seeing way too many flops. In this case, my VPIP was 31.32. Just for the record, I am a lifetime 22 VPIPer and that still may be a little too high. One thing that I have been doing lately is watching some people that are consistently winning and hopefully that will help with my patience. I think it is always a good idea to watch successful players.

Leak #2: Lack of Aggressiveness Again I believe the theme here is to push until pushed back with your good hands... but on the other hand.. be willing to let the hand go when you don't connect with the board and you are receiving substantial pressure.

Now, let's get into some hand analysis; but first I need to clarify that some of my leak finding techniques are coming from a great ebook that some great bloggers wrote called the pokertrackerguide. I don't want to steal too much thunder from this as it is worth it for everybody to go out and buy this. I believe the cost is only $20 and again, it is very much worth the money. The things that I use in this article is only a very small sample of what you can find in this guide which goes into things like Reviewing Your play, finding mistakes in your play, general playing ideas, data mining, auto rating players, table selection, playing the players, exporting player notes and using the game time windows. Wow, I need to go back and read this again... Anyway.. onto the Leaks.

Also, I want to mention that some of these leaks will seem obvious now that I'm looking back on them. That is why it is so important to review your play after each and every session. Anyway, I will move on with the leaks.

Leak #3: Cold Calling with marginal hands: Cold Calling 2 or more bets is nearly never a winning proposition. If you have say a top 15 hand, you should be raising and you could also make the argument that if you are playing for 2 bets, why not make it 3. Take the lead in the hand. I can maybe see cold calling with some pocket pairs; but you need to be willing to let go if you don't hit the flop. Looking back, my top 10 losing hands while cold calling 2 or more bets were: KK, 76s, A7s, 77, ATs, A8, TT, JT, T9s and KJ. Even if you are in the blinds (which I wasn't), most of these hands are marginal at best to be cold calling... I would say that I'm sure that I had my reasons at the time; but KJ and JT???? Yikes... Sometimes, you can justify playing if the implied odds are big enough... another words, you have position in a multi-player pot... but be careful.

You can also take a look at ther percentage of cold calling preflop. Mine was 1.75% which is very high... I would like to see this number to gravitate closer to 1 or less.

Leak #4: Not trusting your instincts: Have you ever played a hand where you are almost certain that you are beat but you keep calling it down either because there is that small chance that he might be bluffing or maybe the player is a "fishy" type player. Let's put this in the you need to trust your instincts category. If you think you are beat, then there is a good chance that you are beat. It's as simple as that. As many people have said, some the best money that you can make is by not calling the last 1, 2 or 3 bets. I know, I know, it is sometimes hard to lay down those Aces or Kings.. but sometimes you have to... Accordingly, let's look at my biggest losing hands that I went to Showdown (with other criteria as well (per pokertrackerguide): AK, TT, AT, QQ, AQ, A4, ATs, T9, A5s and AQs. Boy, don't you hate laying down AK; but sometimes... you just need to trust your instincts.

Leak #5: Positional Play including the blinds: It was no surprise that I lost the most money in the blinds. That in itself is not a leak. As we all know, we are getting proper odds to call raises from the BB when we get a multi player pot. Even just against one raiser, you have some odds. Given that fact, my VPIP from the BB was 36.06 and from the SB it was 45.33. Those numbers are a little high and I need to be a little more selective on these hands. I also saw that I was losing money and calling too much from middle position.

Ok.. so that was a brief look at my review of October. What are some things that I can take away from this analsys which leads to:

Leak #6: Not reviewing your play frequently: This little exercise was the first time that I reviewed my October stats. Had I reviewed this stats earlier, I could have noticed these glaring weaknesses and hopefully corrected them before that fateful last Saturday of the month. It only takes a few minutes to review your session... whether it be after you session or prior to starting your next session; reviewing your play is essential to progressing your poker game.

Well, there you have it and there you are... Let's hope that November will be a better month and that I pay heed to these leaks and look to improve them.

Have a great weekend!!!!


cc said...

Will, great exercise and some good thoughts. Let me chime in on a couple of things:

>> To build on not trusting your insticts, I've got to be --EV when I call down the turn raise when they catch their two pair, but I don't think I ever lay down my AQ when I flop the ace, ever. That has to be an absolutely huge chunk, so I don't know what to say.
>> Regarding the blinds, I wonder if there is anyone who is +EV from bb. It would be interesting to see what would happen if you always raised from bb (say over 1000 hands). Would you be +EV if you raised to the river (with the heads-up stealer).
>> My only losing level was $5/10 as well, so there may be more to this. Potentially, there may be more folks to call down (at least that's my subjective view) as my AK almost never wins unless I improve while at $15/30 it frequently wins without improving.

Great work, and I'm glad you did it. When reading about your bad day and looking at your stats, I thought you might have overlooked some things. I'll work on a similar exercise for myself.


GaryC said...


I think you should seriously consider writing a book, brother. This has been a damn informative set of posts. Much appreciated.


Performify said...


Great series of posts, Will.

SetAces said...


I just discovered your blog a few weeks ago and have been gradually poring through the last few months worth of posts. Loved the month of SnGs! Keep up all the hard work.


hdouble said...

Thanks for the plug and glad to see someone using the guide to it's potential.

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