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The Shark And The Fish

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  • The Shark And The Fish

    It is funny, we all know what a 'shark' is and a 'fish' is when used to describe a poker player. We all use these terms without ever really thinking about where they came from. While I can't say I know where the poker terms were originally coined, but I will share my theory.

    After playing live $1/2 poker for a week I feel as though I have gained additional insight into why 'shark' and 'fish' were specifically used. The majority of players at $1/2 no limit holdem live cash games can be considered bad players. There is sometimes 1-2 more skilled players at the average table. That is the common environment at the table.

    Now picture this in your mind. A large school of fish in the open ocean with darkness all around them. A shark swims nearby, threatening to strike at them. The fish react by swimming closer together to each other, creating confusion for the shark and safety in numbers. The shark circles waiting for the perfect moment to strike, while the fish swim amongst themselves wildly. The shark sees an opportunity and dives in, taking out a fish or two in the process.

    That is exactly what it is like playing $1/2 live cash. The bad players actually protect themselves from the sharks with their numbers alone. Limp or raise 4 x BB it doesn't matter, there will be 3-4 'fish' seeing a flop. This results in removing most of the 'sharks' advantage from the situation. He is practically helpless to attack the fish if he doesn't hit the flop hard. One of the fish has most likely hit the flop and will call the shark down. Unless the shark gets a miracle flop, he must withdraw and let the fish fight amongst themselves.

    This predicament causes the shark poker player to have to lay in wait.... and wait.... and wait for an opportunity to emerge. When the shark is dealt a premium hand he must attack very hard and aggressively(raising 5-10 x BB), isolating a fish or two from the group and making them pay the maximum for their mistakes. With speculative hands such as suited connectors and small pocket pairs the shark can make smaller raises or even limp in, keeping more fish in the pot, lulling them in with a sense of safety. Then when the right occasion arises and the flop hits just right, the speculative hand in a bloated pot becomes the perfect opportunity to emerge from within the school of fish and blindside one, decapitating them with your made set or straight or flush.

    Of course this is poker so sometimes even when the opportunity is perfect, luck will fall on the fish's side and they will 2 or 3 outer you for the win. It is an unpleasent experience for the shark, but the shark will still eventually get fed and remain on top of the food chain.

  • #2
    umbup:

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    • #3
      I get the feeling my post was a paragraph too long... lol. Why hop onto a forum if you don't wanna read?

      Anybody else had similar experiences at $1/2 live cash? Anybody have the opposite experience? Did you find yourself wondering why one guy at the table just sat there super tight for 30 minutes at a time only to suddenly whip out a preflop raise to $18. All the while you and everyone else are playing every other hand and 'getting in the action'. Haha.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by RockerguyAA View Post
        I get the feeling my post was a paragraph too long... lol. Why hop onto a forum if you don't wanna read?

        Anybody else had similar experiences at $1/2 live cash? Anybody have the opposite experience? Did you find yourself wondering why one guy at the table just sat there super tight for 30 minutes at a time only to suddenly whip out a preflop raise to $18. All the while you and everyone else are playing every other hand and 'getting in the action'. Haha.
        i play 1 2 live m8t but it is pot limit where i go even harder, when u dealt premiums under the gun they all call have little chance lol.

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        • #5
          Browsing through the PSO library and found this article about playing live cash at a casino. It is a good primer to read through before heading out for your first time. Also, thought it was related to my thread so going ahead and posting it here.

          Thanks Al Spath!
          http://www.pokerschoolonline.com/art...ive-Action-Now

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          • #6
            Sweeeeeeet, here is another good one -
            http://www.pokerschoolonline.com/art...e-Skills-Spath

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            • #7
              Originally posted by RockerguyAA View Post
              Sweeeeeeet, here is another good one - http://www.pokerschoolonline.com/art...e-Skills-Spath
              good links umbup:

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