The nice run at 10/20 short continued last night, booking my first +$1,000 day in quite awhile. Sometimes I wonder if I overthink things (well, wonder is the wrong word, as I know I do), as poker really isn't that difficult when you get down to brass tacks. Especially against opponents like this:
10/20 6 max LHE, I'm in the BB with J10h. CO is very bad and the reason I'm sitting at the table. Folds to CO, who open-raises, folds to me, and I call.
Flop is 7c 9s 10h. I check, CO bets, I check-raise, CO calls.
Turn is 3h. I check, CO bets, I check-raise, CO calls.
River is 8s. I check, CO bets, I check-raise, CO calls.
CO rolls over Kd2c and loses.
The 6 max phenomenon is an interesting one, though, as far as the general trend of 6 max becoming much more popular in recent months. The attraction is pretty obvious, as far as more action for the action junkies, but I also wonder if part of the popularity is slightly more complicated, related to keeping bad players afloat longer.
It's a little counter-intuitive, as you'd guess at first glance that bad players would bust out faster at 6 max, given that they're faced with many more decisions per hour, so their weaknesses in decision-making are exposed and magnified much more rapidly. And that has to be true, but the flip side is that in many cases bad players (especially over-aggressive ones that play too many hands and play them too hard) are actually playing much more correctly at 6 max, for no reason other than the structure itself. Cut the total numbers of players in the game and raw aggression becomes more valuable, especially in the hands of someone who doesn't "know any better" and ignores assorted warning signs.
Here's a hand that somewhat illustrates the above. It's also a hand that I play like a semi-donkey, so you get the added pleasure of witnessing that as well:
10/20 6 max LHE, I'm on the button with JdJh. UTG open-raises, folds to me and I 3-bet, SB folds, BB caps, UTG calls, I call. BB and UTG are both pretty terrible and over-aggressive, so their range is pretty much anything.
Flop is 2c 8h 9h. BB checks, UTG bets, I raise, BB 3-bets. UTG calls and the action is on me.
Honestly, I should likely just fold here, despite my overpair. Even if I put one of the crazies on overcards and the other on a flush draw (which is pretty much best case scenario here), I'm not that far ahead, and both opponents love to bash, so who knows how expensive it will get to continue in the hand. One of them likely has an overpair to my jacks, as even crazies get dealt big hands sometimes, and pre-flop action seemed to indicate that, so I'm likely drawing to two outs. I've watched both opponents bash away to the river with K high in previous hands, though, so I manage to talk myself out of folding in what's a pretty nice pot.
Turn is Qd. BB bets, UTG folds (?), and I decide to get jiggy and raise, hoping to buy a free showdown, with every intention of folding to a re-raise.
BB re-raises. I dwell for awhile then go "Hee haw" and call. I know, I know. It's a big pot. I'm a donkey. BB is a confirmed lemur. What can I say.
River is 3s. BB bets, I call. BB rolls over A5c and a fat pot is pushed my way.
In retrospect, that's obviously pretty poor play for BB holding A5c. Spewing chips like crazy. Next stop, Bustville, population 172,182,172.
But I very nearly folded that hand, and should have folded, in likely two different spots. Which is obviously results-oriented thinking, in every way, but the lurking point is that the BB will likely last much longer playing that way in 6 max than if he were playing at a full ring game. He'll rake enough extra pots via brute bludgeoning at 6 max to keep him at the tables for awhile, likely longer than he'd last at full ring where the same tactics work less often. He's still a crazy, in the end, and will go broke consistently playing that way at either 6 max or full ring, but in many cases he gets more mileage for his chips at 6 max.
Have some bonusey type stuff to post soon that I've been working on, so stay tuned for that.