Friday, November 29, 2013

Meals and Deals

Still in holiday mode around here after yesterday’s marathon of football and repeated helpings of turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, and everything else. Even had a full serving of sushi near night’s end to add a weird (though delicious) twist to the gourmandizing extravaganza.

Got two of three games correct yesterday, having gone with the Steelers in the nightcap and endured that painful almost-but-not-quite finish for Pittsburgh. Feel good about the pick even if it didn’t work out, as it seemed like a reasonable gamble to go with the visitors.

Speaking of taking gambles, this week over on the Learn site I’ve been exploring the topic of final table deal-making, partly inspired by the preponderance of deals I saw being made during the recently concluded MicroMillions 6 series on PokerStars -- the deals, of course, often being proposed and agreed to primarily to avoid taking gambles late in a tourney when the stacks are shallow and the pay jumps steep.

The MicroMillions series can be especially interesting when it comes to final table deals because many of the players involved in the discussions aren’t necessarily that well versed in the nuances of final table deal negotations. With such low buy-ins (many of the events are just a couple of bucks or thereabouts to play), there are a lot of players making the final tables who’ve never come close to winning, say, $1,000 in a single tournament (or more). So it stands to reason some might not have ever dealt with dealing.

Watching some of the discussions take place, I started thinking about how it might be somewhat useful to give a little primer on the process, and so ended up writing a three-parter this week on Learn talking about final table deals, how they work, and some of the pros and cons for making them.

The first part mainly just introduces the topic, then in the second part I spent some time explaining the what “chip count” (or “chip chop”) deals were and what a deal based on the “ICM” (“Independent Chip Model”) method of assigning cash values to stacks was. That latter discussion took a little while to get through, but I hope it comes off as easy enough to read and ultimately helpful.

Then in the third part I got into some of the reasons why people want to make final table deals as well as reasons why others do not. Again, it goes on a while, in part because I spend some time talking about both a wild heads-up deal in Macau from a year ago and the famous story of Moneymaker offering a deal to Farha in the 2003 WSOP Main Event (and Farha refusing).

But like I say, I hope the articles end up being of use to someone who might eventually find him or herself at the final table of a MicroMillions event (or some other tourney) and thankful for having had an introduction to the whole process of such deals.

Here are the links to those three articles:

  • Let’s Make a Deal: Introducing Deal-Making in Tournaments
  • Let’s Make a Deal: “Chip Count” and “ICM” Deals
  • Let’s Make a Deal: Reasons For and Against Final Table Deals
  • Have a good weekend, all. I’m off to see if there’s anything left on that carcass in the fridge.

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