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Tourney Prep

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  • Tourney Prep

    Good Afternoon B&M Players ,
    Need to spur some discussion among the few of us who frequent Brick and Mortar Casino Poker Rooms and Tournament halls.

    I read Rolf's article about preparing for Barcelona. This brought to mind a question of how DO pros get prepared for a 2 week Tournament like the ones coming up at Borgata and/or Trump Taj Mahal?

    They of course look at their bankroll first, decide what events to enter and how to get into the main event via satellites, buy-in, or not even worry about the Main Event?

    If you had a bankroll of $10K, willing to risk it all, of course, how would you approach Borgata or the Taj Tournaments?

    Would you play in the SuperSats, one table Satellites, Act I and Act II's? Would you play the preliminary events instead?

    If you were to play in the preliminary events, would you go for the lower buyin, greater attended, or concentrate on the higher buyins?

    All opinions appreciated.

    Profitable Playing,

    "Have Gun Will Travel Reads the Card of the Man"

  • #2
    I always evaluate all of my options before playing in a series of events. Guess what? Not everyone does that and it can end up costing you dearly. I will be playing in the USPC events coming up and I took the following approach:

    1. Evaluated how much vacation time I have available

    I have roughly 10 days available and unless I get into the main event and go deep, then I don't see that being an issue.

    2. Bankroll

    I determine what amount of my bankroll that I am willing to risk. Typically this would be 10% per tourney for myself, but I recently heard Hazy saying that 5% is probably a better number because that allows for a maximum of 20 losing sessions before busting. I won’t even be risking 10% of my bankroll for the 5 tournaments that I plan on entering so that is not a problem.

    3. Tournament Selection

    This part is fairly easy for me. I simply evaluate a couple of major factors:
    Buy-in, structure, estimated field, and the payouts from the previous year’s event

    The buy-in shouldn’t be more than 10% of my bankroll (based upon the notion that I have not experienced any 10+ consecutive losing sessions in the last 5 years).

    Structure is very important to me because I excel in deep stack/long blind structures that allow me to be patient and pick my spots. I have found that most of the cheaper tourneys and smaller satellites (single tables) have the smaller starting stacks and quicker blinds. The mid buy-in events are usually the way I go ($500-$1000). I will occasionally play the satellite tourneys for events that I really want to play in (The 5K stud event for example), but I am not going to put my self in situations that I don’t excel in.

    Finally, I check the field size and payouts for the previous year’s tournament and determine a feasible expectation for this year’s. It is important to notice what day the tournament fell on also because an initial 340 buy-in tourney on a Wed. isn’t going to draw a similar field as on a weekend. This gives me a reasonable expectation on what kind of return I can get on my investment if I do well.

    I will play the stud tourneys regardless of the buy-in because they attract a specific type of player, but the NL I will only play ones with favorable structures and good payouts.



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