Starting to Think I’ll Take Lucky Over Good

Chops here.

It‚Äôs decided.  Changed my mind. In poker, I‚Äôd rather be lucky than good.

After playing what I felt was some great poker over the past six weeks or so, and consistently having the crap kicked out of me on rivers (“getting rivered” as we call it) or other painful scenarios, the tables finally turned in our weekly WCP game last night…

Figured it would be a good evening after I flopped a straight flush in an unraised pot as the big blind‚Ķwith someone else flopping a Queen high flush.  We‚Äôve had an alarming number of straight flushes in the past few weeks.  Not sure if Worm is dealing from the bottom of the deck, but I‚Äôm not complaining about this one.

Eventually though my stack dwindled.  So I had to survive a bunch of all-ins where I was the underdog each time.  Luckily, each time I did.

Now of course, as discussed last week, there‚Äôs a luck factor in poker.  If there weren‚Äôt, then Phil Hellmuth would win every game, right?  But I remembered something last night that‚Äôs hugely important to how you manage your chip stack: no matter how good you think your hand is, you‚Äôre hardly ever as big of a favorite as you think you are going into a hand. 

For example, the Addict was on his game last night and had built a monster stack.  I‚Äôm under the gun with A-Q and raise.  The Addict is big blind and re-raises me, putting me close to all in.  I move all in and he calls.  I say, ‚ÄúIt‚Äôs either a coin flip or I‚Äôm slaughtered.‚Äù  The Addict flips over his A-K. 
Sure, I‚Äôm dominated at this stage, but I‚Äôm still going to win this hand about 25% of the time, which just doesn‚Äôt seem right (and a Queen did hit on the flop on this occasion).  While these percentages aren‚Äôt shocking news to anyone that plays often, you can still lose sight of the fact that no matter how good your starting hand is, you‚Äôre still very vulnerable with one nasty flip of the card. 

As the night wore on, eventually the guy I thought was playing best (the Addict) goes out as me, Colin ‚Äúthe Snake‚Äù, and iPod double-up on him with inferior hands and battle it out from there. 

So on a week that I wasn‚Äôt playing as well as I had before, I end up with much better results.  Go figure. 

Luck, be a river, tonight…


6 Responses

  1. iPod

    April 14, 2005 12:43 pm, Reply

    Chops was also foaming at the mouth when he checked his hole cards on that hand. One quick question who is the all-time money leader on the WCPT? The reason I ask is b/c I think it’s me. If it is me could we have some chart posted with my name at the top. Thanks.

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