Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Tournaments vs. Ring Games - Differences

The truth be told, I've only played ring games (aka cash games) once in the past two years prior to the casino in Charles Town opening this month.  I've been playing tournaments.  I play a lot of tournaments.

It's not quite the same.  Now that I am getting heavy into cash games, I am seeing differences.  I always knew they were there, but I wasn't sure I could verbalize the differences in the past.

In a tournament you play with your stack of chips.  In a ring game your stack takes on a different role and you play not with your stack, but with your bankroll.  There are a lot of implications.  If you have a short stack, but a large bankroll, then you can call large bets with good pot odds risking only your stack, not your bankroll.  The differences really increase if you are short stacked.

Take for instance you buy in with $100 at the $1/$2 no limit game.  You put in $6 for time (rake), $2 to post to get in the hand, and then call a $12 preflop bet.  Your $100 buy in is down to $80.  You hit the flop the bet is $20, pot odds say you need to call this.  You do.

If that $100 is all you have then you are practically finished at this point.  You have $60 left.  The turn is a $40 bet, you are still on a draw.  You call.  Five people total are in the pot.  The pot is now $72 * 5 = $360.  All you have left is $20.

There is no bet that would not give you fantastic pot odds on the river.  You have 18:1 odds no matter what the bet is because you are loss limited to your original $100.

If you lose, just dig into your bankroll and pull another $100 out.  If you win, you more than $360.

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