Select Page

Win MTT Poker 08 – Bankroll Management

I realize the title of this point sounds moronic, but let me expand. When you take a bad beat, someone had to draw uphill on you. They committed their chips in a situation where they had negative expectation. This my friends is the whole point of poker, getting action when you have the best of it at that point. Consistently getting your chips into the pot when you the best of it, is what its all about. So if you played the game to the best of your ability, made the correct play, is it not illogical to be upset?

In the long run its just one long poker game. There will be peaks and valleys, great wins and losing streaks. The trend is what defines a winner. Choosing to define yourself or poker in general by one bad beat is insane. You either play well enough to have an edge on the field or you don’t, after a couple hundred tourneys you will know. After 10 tourneys, you don’t, simply too small a sample size.

In my first post, I made a statement that went unchallenged so I will bring it up again for review.

“Winning MTT is very simple, find a way to survive the first 80-90 percent of people, then hit a good run of cards that hold up.”

That is all there is to it, that’s how it happens every single time. I know we spend a lot of time discussing the nuances of poker which is valuable, but sometimes you have to keep it simple too.

Are you making mistakes that do not allow you to get to that good run of cards that all winners get? You simply do not last long enough?

Are you too timid when you get your good run to go for the kill? When AA pops up is the first thing that pops into your head this is a great hand or is it I hope I don’t take another bad beat?

Are you training your brain to be fearless when necessary, yet absolutely dispassionate about bad beats?

Do your emotions understand that losing in large tourneys is frequent and getting to big money is infrequent for even the best players?

Well, I’ve done it again. Another post on controlling your emotions and perspective. The majority of players have a good grasp on the mathematics of poker, the difference maker is often how well you can control your actions based on your knowledge.

The difference between an average player that wins a little and a great player that is always broke is Bankroll Management. To be a winning poker player, you have to think like an investor and not like a gambler. An investor understands there are risks and is unwilling to stake his fortune on an one opportunity. A gambler roams around always sure their fortune is just around the corner, willing to bet it all every time. And if that works out, they will just bet it all again. Thats why all no limit poker players go broke, and true no limit is not spread anymore to my knowledge. You simply can not bet it all every time and win


One good rule of thumb might be never risk more than 5% of your bankroll on any given night. Another might be only play MTT’s where the entry fee is 1% or 2% of your total bankroll. Find a rule that works for you and stick by it. Self control is just as important when managing your bankroll as it is with your play. If you have no self control with money management, you will not be able to stop yourself from going on tilt, making bad calls, bluffing when the pot doesn’t pay the odds, etc.

As several of you have found out lately, everyone hits the skids at times. If you always win, please call, 1-888-idreamofjeannie, because thats as close to reality as you’re ever going to get.

You have to treat your bankroll like a million dollars because it is, it is your ticket to the show. It is your continued ability to make money playing poker and over time, you can continue to reinvest that money to earn larger and larger returns.

Mike 4066 said something a last night that sparked me a little. We were discussing outs on a drawing hand in the chat and he mentioned something like, “how many clean outs do you have and will they pay you off.”

Let’s analyze the first part. Clean outs. A lot of times you have straight and flush draws where you can make your hand and still be beat. For instance, there are 2 flush cards on the flop and you flop an open end straight draw. Now normally you calculate your outs as 8/47 on the turn and 8/46 on the river and that truly is your outs of making the straight, but with the flush draw 2 of those outs are “dirty.” They bring the flush as well.

Now lets say you are drawing to the bottom end of an open end straight with the flop 3 different suits. Say you have 78 and the board is 10,9,3. You really only have 4 clean outs here, as the J brings the gut shot in for KQ and Q8.

In both of the above situations, you have good outs, to make a tremendous hand, but you also have trap me type outs where you make your hand and get screwed out of your stack. You absolutely must keep this in mind when determining how much to call or bet in no limit poker. You cant just limp along like limit poker.

So here is one practical application. Say your in the big blind and you see a free flop. You flop an open ended straight with a 2 card flush on board. The small blind leads out with a large bet and there are 4 more people to act, what do you do? You have to lay this down. 4 more people to act and realistically only 6 cards you want to hit the board. Just simply not worth the risk. They can raise you out after the call, you can hit one of your dirty outs and get beat, the board can always pair and with 5 other players the odds of a set or 2 pair out there go up a lot. You just don’t have a hand here in most no limit situations.

Will they pay you? I am about to seemingly contradict myself, but if you will get paid and have any nut draws, it can definitely paid to draw, just do it cheap or don’t do it all. This mostly applies when the action is wild. If you are the last act on the flop or turn and you just have to call the minimum, call away. If your 20 chip call can get you 1000 chips on the river, call with that 3 outer.

Generally, you don’t want to call along, drawing, in no limit period. You have got to raise and represent giving yourself an added ally, their fear of being beat and losing chips.

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *