Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Poker gems, #449

Mike Caro, in Poker Player newspaper, April 9, 2012 (vol. 15, #21), page 4.

Simply put, most opponents call more often than they should. And that, in itself, makes bluffing a challenge.

In fact, most bluffs are unprofitable. And all bluff attempts averaged together, throughout the history of the universe, have lost money.


Patrick said...

I think maybe he's talking too high level. What about semi-bluffs? Continuation bets? Or even the reverse bluff, appearing weak when you're strong.

Good poker players are probably bluffing ALL of the time, it just might not be the "classic" bluff.

Rakewell said...

In "The Mathematics of Poker" they conclude that the optimal frequency of bluffing results in an EV of zero--no profit or loss over the long run.

NT (aka Cardgrrl) said...

What that suggests is that too little bluffing is -EV and too much bluffing is -EV. So that raises the question: which is MORE -EV, too little or too much?

Additionally, I rather doubt the ratio is linear. Too little bluffing is a little -ev in small doses, but worse if you NEVER bluff. Too much bluffing is -ev if you do it a little, but TERRIBLE if you do it too much.

Memphis MOJO said...

You obviously have to bet some or you're too easy to play against. Further, you never get paid off on your value bets. Cardgrrl says it correctly imo.

Anonymous said...

Theory of Poker (as I'm sure you know) has a section on optimal bluffing frequency as well. I'm sure I'm missing some qualifiers here, but the chances you are bluffing should be equal to the pot odds being offered. (P 165 - 166 if anyone wants a refresher.) I think that's another way of stating what you quoted from Mathematics of Poker

jamyhawk said...

But what about the value of getting caught bluffing on a small pot? A few hands later you win a monster. So the bluff may be -EV but it sets you up for a hand later that may have been a small profit turned into a 'good ol stackin'