Positional play is conventional poker and that is exactly what we are looking to exploit. Playing a stack with 35bb will allow you to maximise fold equity while at the same time being able to get away from huge –EV situations where your opponent clearly has a big hand. This will all become more apparent in the hand example lessons as I explain the concept further.
At the end of the day, NLHE and only NLHE at this time will provide you with ample action at large poker sites like 888poker and the ability to be able to move from game to game whilst maintaining a large amount of fold equity. You simply do not get fold equity to the same level in other forms of poker like limit hold’em and PLO (pot limit Omaha). The structure of limit play means that your opponents are frequently receiving pot odds and in PLO then starting hands are so close in value pre-flop that you are forced also in that form of poker to play more flops. Playing post flop poker as an inexperienced player will kill you in one of two ways……OR BOTH!
The game becomes infinitely more complex post flop and this is where better players will beat you……..they will defeat you post flop and not pre-flop in cash games. But also when you play flops and post flop poker then you pay rake.
While it is true that you can get a percentage of this money back by way of rakeback…….the overwhelming majority of players are not saved by this. Let us say that you get 30% rakeback which according to the hours that you play equates to $3000/year. When looked at in isolation then that doesn’t look bad. Until you see that to get $3000 back that you have had to have generated $10,000……meaning the site keeps roughly $7000 of your money. Had this been a home game with no rake then you would have kept the entire $10,000 to begin with.
I am not knocking the sites……they are businesses and businesses need to make money…….as much money as possible. This is why rakeback is an illusion for many players because in this instance then the player needs to make $7000 in a year just from the games to break even. If he has minimal experience or his ability is not superior to his opponents then he basically has no chance. But let us say that you played a style that only generated $3000 in total rake for the site by the year end.
You get 30% of that back on this rake deal which means that you get back $900. Now this doesn’t look attractive compared to the previous figure of $3000 but wait a minute. Suddenly there isn’t a $7000 shortfall anymore but only a $2100 one. Clearly then the obstacle that you have to overcome as an inexperienced player when it comes to making money has been massively reduced simply by paying less rake to the site even though you have made far less rakeback.
Many people would view this as losing out on $2100 which is the difference between the original $3000 rakeback total and $900. But you are not getting this money for free…….you are PAYING MONEY TO GET THIS MONEY! If someone gave you $3000 then would this be a good result? It all depends of course but it wouldn’t be a good result if you had to pay this person $10,000 to get the $3000. However changing the scenario again then it may be a good result if in paying this person $10,000, it thus opened up an avenue to get another $15,000 from third parties.
So you may have given person A $10,000 to only get $3000 back but by allowing yourself to become involved with person A you then are able to meet persons B,C,D and E who give you $15,000 in total then you are $8000 up on the deal. In essence then this is what good winning players do when they play online poker. They know that they can offset the $7000 loss in this instance and then rake is simply the fee that they pay to get access to people who will pass them money in a greater quantity than what they were paying out.
It is simple numbers but to make the numbers work for you then you absolutely must play poker by the numbers and the key numbers are the amount of rake that you pay and reducing this figure as much as possible. The Sniper will show you how to do this and to give you the best chance possible to come out of all of this ahead.
It is a sobering thought when you look at online poker in this way but just look at how much bigger the obstacle towards making money becomes when you don’t even sign up for rakeback at all. Suddenly the person who is $7000 down becomes $10,000 and the player who is $2100 down becomes $3000 down………rakeback is important…….but the goal is not to make it your primary strategy.