Donkley At least Two Mistakes Means No Chop Soup For Me

Had a pretty good tournament. Ended up going out 17th. I think I was a little rusty with my Donkley strategy there and paid the price. I usually try to get first in vig and play small ball if someone else is in the pot when the blinds get to that critical stage.

Mistake number 1: I made a loose, loose call for most of my chips defending an opening raise. Too often if I get resistance when trying to steal during a rotation I find I'll fold the first and maybe second hands but the third time I'll make a dumb stand. Why dumb? Because usually nobody is keying into the fact that I'll fold to reraises there and in that tournament at least they are genuinely raising me with a hand.

No need to make a stand with a A rag, when there will be other spots. Yet, I do. It's a leak, I've identified and am working on.

After commiting that I error I have to rebuild my chips. Fortunately, I don't run into any hands and then I stack up enough chips with all-ins into unopened pots to be a threat again. We are down under 20 and I'm actually dangerous again, yet I don't recalculate and recalibrate my strategy, I'm still in the shove mode.

Reid G has mentioned positive Tilt before and I think that happens when you feel the rush of putting all your chips at risk and continually scooping pots. In tournaments during those recovery stages, I have a leak where I don't remind myself, I got some chips to play and can be patient again. Usually I walk that fine line when the old timer at the other side at the table is muttering "Always works until it don't," or some variation of that.

Mistake Number 2: Sure enough, I've scooped some pots and got some random luckbox wins by seeing multiple (tight players) all-ins before I fold my jacks. Yes, AA was out there and held. Which feels like a scooped pot on its own.

Then, I'm in the big blind when the chip leader puts in a barely over min-raise, and actually takes off some chips before putting it out there. Had I not been on positive tilt I might have seen that for what it was. Instead, I'm folded to and I look at pocket 10s. I shove, more out of instinct and less out of strategy. Not saying shoving with 10s is a bad play but I had some information that I wasn't utilizing. Texas Hold'Em is all about gathering information and making the best decisions obviously, so ignoring informtion that is out there is like playing baseball without a first baseman.

Guy had made bigger bets every time before, why not use his stack unless he wants some action. Even worse the image I had been selling around the table was shovebot and why not make a weakish bet. Even worse, I had the chips to afford all options, call, fold, reraise, reraise shove. Since he's the chip leader by a ton, and even though my stack is medium sized, it's no sweat for him to call, so i don't have any fold equity preflop.

Shove is probably the worse choice for a holding that is at best dominating 9s maybe 8s (though chipleader probably isn't betting those hands so light so that might be a 1 in 30 shot) in a coinflip with AK, AQ, AJ, and unlikely facing A10 or suited aces. Or getting killed by an overpair (which is probably most likely given the information I had).

With that in consideration, fold is a possibility especially as we are on the cusp of the money and a likely chop (oddly, the chipleader at the time, my opponent in the hand, is a guy I discussed final table chops with at the outset so I know he's amenable to it). The price he is selling at makes sense for me to set mine with 10s though I don't think it's a mistake to fold either given how valuable any chips are at that stage of the tournament (what's that Independent Chip Modeling and based on the fact this event plays more like a mega satellite than a true tournament).

I do neither, nor do I pop back (though, I probably didn't have enough chips to raise fold... but against other opponents this might work). Instead I shove. He insta-calls and cordially turns over his aces like a gentleman, no slow-roll there. I get no redraws and leave.


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