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Coinflips - a blessing or a curse?  0   
Hi Mobsters! I'm starting this thread because many people in strategies say that you don't want to play coinflips. It applies most of the time to MTT or SNGs early stages, but also in few I'd say well respected cash games articles/threads/videos they're saying the very same thing - avoid coinflips.

But with few maths I think it's b******t, really. Most of the times heads up coinflip is played all in pre flop. AK vs. TT is about 43% to 57% underdog, vs. 44 it's about 46% vs. 54%. I understand that hands like 70-30 or 90-10 are way more profitable, but let's face it - coinflips ARE profitable in the long run (I'm still talking about all in pre flop). Some people say that they want to avoid going all in pre flop with AK, that they're gonna do it just with AA & KK. Why the hell? You're huge underdog only versus AA, vs. KK you have 35-65 spot or 30-70 (it depends on suits), which isn't that bad at all (but still it isn't profitable).

Now it's time for a little bit of math. Let's assume we played 1k hands and you go all in pre flop.

Let's start with 40%-60% chances. 40% of the times you'll double up, which means in 400 hands you'll earn 800 stacks. And then in 600 hands you lose 600 stacks, so you have profit of 200 stacks during 1k hands.

Now when we get closer to the 50-50 it get's just better. AKo vs. QQ (all different suits) is 43% vs. 57% spot. 430 times you'll win 2 stacks, so it geives you 860 stacks of profit, and then you lose 570 stacks, which leaves you with a profit of 290 stacks.

When it comes to AKo vs. KK (also all different suits) we are "only" 10 stacks behind per 1k hands, so it isn't that bad as it look, isn't it?

Perhaps some of you who already know it will turn ironic mode on (dozn? Smile), but from what I've seen on poker forums many people are thinking, that playing AKo vs. QQ all in pre flop is -EV, but in fact it IS profitable.

Perhaps I'm wrong somewhere and my maths are too simplified? What are your thoughts?

PS By "stack" in this thread I mean effective stacks.

Edited by LooseKiddie (22 May 2011 @ 11:47 GMT)


     
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Are you kidding me? If you double up 400 stacks you get 800 stacks, right, but the earnings are just the additional 400 stacks, that compares to 600 stacks lost, come on ... You are supposed to do better

     
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Aww crap! it seems I've a bad day Smile You're right, my mistake Smile Perhaps some of you will have fun reading this, so there still will be some benefits from this thread, so I won't edit this (maybe I'll win some foolish post of the year award if there is one? Cool ).

Edited by LooseKiddie (22 May 2011 @ 12:06 GMT)


     
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Lol. I noticed the same mistake although at first i thought wtf how can he be the underdog every hand and still be in profit.

Of course if you're 55% favourite to win it's still called a coinflip and then you would be expected to make a profit in the long run but there's still a good reason why you don't go looking for coinflips with a middle pair.

Besides the fact that a coinflip is the best you can hope to be called by and you could run into an overpair, these sort of hands encounter so much variance that you need a much larger bankroll to support this play. If you see a flop with these hands you are much more likely to trap people and get a good profit in the long run without the risk of huge swings.

But there is a time and place for a coinflip. Not so much in cash games but in tourneys where you are short stack. A lot of the time in a tourney you should avoid a coinflip even more than in a cash game since your playing for your tourney life and without the rebuy -/+ev is less effective. But if you need to double up or go home in order to have any chance at all of winning some money, then you should look for a coinflip. Also shoving with AK is good around the bubble when you know there is a lot of fold equity but you most likely have outs if you get called.

Edited by awood88 (22 May 2011 @ 12:21 GMT)


     
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Well, I've had "post & then think mode" on, it seems that nice weather is affecting me Tongue

     
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I avoid flips as much as possable, the nly real winner (cash) is going to be the site.
But for tourns, I find myself making a lot of them late stages, never eairly, I see it as a hero or bust play and belive you need that hint of luck to take down a 1st, happy if my luck comes in a for of a flip.

     
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coin flips are a curse for me at the mo but you need to win them to win a tourney

     
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Posted by dozn01:
coin flips are a curse for me at the mo but you need to win them to win a tourney

That is the point. While it is rare that the money goes in preflop in a cash game, there will be a lot of those situations in a tourney. So work on your coin flip skills. Cool

     
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guess whether you say that they are a bless or a curse depends on how they end Big Smile
if you go really deep winning some they are pretty cool imo Blink

     
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Thats right, win them and you will love them, loose them - especially when you are 60%+ favourite - and you will definetly hate them.
But nevertheless you will have to play them in tourneys if you would like to go deep.

     
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Welcome to the forum dvirleitner, and good eye for your 1st post. There is lots of good stuff here.

Good stuff LooseKiddie, thanks for not editing your thread, starting off my day with a smile. Also I'm often just as bad, I'm often mistaking the common terms and acronyms used and doing an entirely incorrect analysis.

Keep up the good work.

     
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Nobody like coinflips to determine the winner of a hand, but in multi table tournaments sometimes this is inevitable, so we must deal with this coinflip phenomenon. Blink

     
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i tend to avoid coinflips in ring games cos they not worth it most of the times because of the rake, but in tournaments you do have to take your chances if you wanna survive and get the top spot.

     
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I only go all in on cash games when i have pocket aces. Pocket kings are simply not good enough considering there is very popular among fish players to call with weak hands like A7 outsuited or so, and if they got the ace on the common cards you are done. Of course AK it's also very bad to go all in, on a table with regulars they range on all in preflop is definately pocket aces or pocket kings, so even if you get a pair you are busted because they hit trips, with the exception when they have pocket kings and you get the ace on the community cards.
In tournaments and exceptionally freerolls cionflips are definately needed sometimes, well you can go all in with evey hand with with high cards in general it might worth taking the risk.
Good luck to all, especially on coin flips....

     
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just read OP for the first time: lol oops

Big Smile Aww crap!

------------
just a little on topic, regarding MTT (and SNG to an extent) - coin flips / races can be a great leveller of the playing field.. Great MTT players tend to play a wide range of hands and excel at small-ball poker.. They make lots of calls and then out=play opponents on the flop. They generally avoid allin situations because then its leaving it to chance - whereas their massive edge comes from their post-flop skill level.

If you're ever playing on an MTT and you KNOW that the table in general is well out of your league (maybe you satellited into an large buyin event) - then shoving lots of coin flip hands, etc is a GREAT way to eliminate your opponents post-flop edge; pros loath to gamble for their tourney life, force them into it. Basically - fall back on equilibrium plays (shove/fold) when you're not confident that you can out-play somebody on the flop.

Edited by jessthehuman (25 May 2011 @ 06:35 GMT)


     
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Lately I have been in a lot of coin flip situations and i lost most of them, what bad luck last week, but no problem maybe I will lucky next time.

     
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Posted by GIOMi6:
Lately I have been in a lot of coin flip situations and i lost most of them, what bad luck last week, but no problem maybe I will lucky next time.


Losing coin flips is one of the strongest components of a down swing. I mean - you walk into a casino sometimes you see roulette show black 10 in a row for example. You translate that to MTT - if you put your tourney life on the line in 10 different MTTs, all before the bubble and all with a coinflip - well thats 10 buyins down the drain. Variance sucks balls. Hope you swing the other way soon Smile

     
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***k variance even if coinflips are needed, i try to avoid them unless i know i got my money in best, then if i lose i can blame pokerstars/fulltilt lol Big Smile

also note i am a tournament player, it seems a lot of the time i get all in on a ring game, we both have like AK and it ends up split pot so then only the rake wins a few chips off each of us

     
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Posted by Jibberish:
***k variance even if coinflips are needed, i try to avoid them unless i know i got my money in best, then if i lose i can blame pokerstars/fulltilt lol Big Smile

also note i am a tournament player, it seems a lot of the time i get all in on a ring game, we both have like AK and it ends up split pot so then only the rake wins a few chips off each of us


Just FYI: if you're an MTT player - getting it in prewith AK in ring games is generally a bad idea.. best cast scenario; AK vs AK - seriously - no one is calling less than that. Its a great allin hand for late stage MTT - but very bad in ring.

     
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lucky is a most importat component of poker and for winning a tourney you must win a lot of coin flip. Smile

     
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