Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Bad Beats

Ok, while I'm on a conference call and only allowed to browse websites instead of playing poker, I went to to try and find out which events were going to be televised by ESPN this year (as I'm debating which event to go play in; I'm leaning towards the June 3rd $1,500 event, although if I'm wild and crazy there's always the $2,500 short handed event, but I digress), and I found out that Phil Gordon is writing columns for them. The one I started reading was called 'Bad, bad beats'.

In it, he had some very good words to note:

Here is a really simple fact I try to keep in mind: great players experience more bad beats than bad players. Great players get their money into the pot with the best hand and the suckers are forced to draw out. As a corollary, great players rarely deliver a bad beat: they almost never get their money into the pot drawing slim.

I bring this up because I was having a discussion with a friend of mine, who was bewailing his series of bad beats online. My response was, "If you're getting your money in with the best hand, you're playing right and you shouldn't stop." This didn't make him feel much better, but then he kicked my butt in the home tourney by flopping a full house, and that probably did the trick.

For those of you poker bloggers out there, I was more than a little amused when he went on to say:

Here's the bottom line in Hold'em: you're almost never quite as far ahead as you think you are. Ac -- Kc vs. 7h -- 2h? The Ace-King will take a "bad beat" about 30.697% of the time. That is almost 1 out of 3 times.

Who knew the suited hammer was so powerful?!