No Tapping The Fish TankThis Article was written by Brokerstar, one of our very own players here at TagPoker who has been with us since the start of the site. Brokerstar plays mainly on Full Tilt poker and Poker4ever as well as writting a Blog to keep track of his trials and tribulations as an aspiring 'poker pro'.
Reasons not to tap the glassImagine yourself sat down at the poker table, you check your hole cards to see big slick smiling right back at you(Ace, King). You instantly reach for your chips and throw out a raise. To your delight, the one player that you've been longing to play a pot with calls. This player is the soft spot at the table, the mark, the sucker, the fish!
The flop is dealt, King of spades, seven of hearts and a two of spades. The fish is first to act making a smallish bet into 'your' pot, This is the moment you've been waiting for, this guy hates to fold and will call you all the way, as far as you're concerned, you have the nuts. After taking a moment to plan your move or at least trying not to look too excited, you announce "I raise" as you calmly yet confidently push a stack of chips into the pot. The fish hesitates for a moment, looks at his cards and calls. At this point you're trying to use your superior poker savvy to ascertain his possible holdings. Being the shark that you are, you don't just put him on one specific hand, you choose a range of hands that you think this sucker is likely holding. In any case, at this moment you are happy to see more chips entering 'your' pot.
The turn is dealt, a three of hearts and our unwitting victim checks. Now you've read a few chapters of super system, posted maybe four times in an online poker forum and even subscribed to a poker magazine, you deserve this, this is your reward for all the effort that you put into your game, it's time to get paid! When the guy checks again, you're sure you still have the best hand, you put him on a weaker king, an under pair or a flush draw. You fire out another bet, this time with meaning, directness and aggression, you want the guy to know, we mean business, of course if you're online it'll just be the automated sound of artificial chips being chinked into the centre of a cyberpot. Our opponent once again looks down at his cards, thinks for a second and again elects to call.
The river card is rolled over, it's the eight of clubs. The pot is huge by this point and our fishy little friend decides to check for the final time. You're feeling happy, the eight doesn't complete any straight or flush, if he had a set then he probably wouldn't check on the river, you put him on a busted flush draw, weaker king or a hand like QQ,JJ,TT that just didn't believe we had the king or he's just too fishy to fold. Based on your thinking, you decide to move all in. At this point you're already planning how to spend the money, you're already enjoying the sense of victory, the fact that you'll show the rest of the poker table how much of a guru you are, the other players will be in awe of your mightiness, "I call" and right then a slightly unsettling feeling kicks in, you still think you're good but it's a feeling of uncertainty that many poker players have felt by this point and with good reason. Your heart skips a beat as the guy rolls over a seven (please dont have 77, please) and finally an 8, and then it happens, your emotions hit the fan, your toys get thrown out of the pram. "How the f**k do you call me with that s**t??" "you fu**ing fish" "you know how many outs you had?" "dumb mother"Well you get the picture.
If I'm honest, I've been in this very situation or situations like it many times. Early on in my career I was one of most abusive 'good players' there was. That was until one day another player said to me "No tapping the aquarium please".After thinking about it, all you're doing is scaring the fish, by berating them you look weak and pathetic but even worse that your poker playing, guru status being slightly tarnished you might do one of the most damaging things that you can do to your poker profits, you might scare away the fish. Think about it, do you really want them to stop playing?Of course not, for a start they still have your money. That's the worst case scenario, but lets think about other negative side affects of your verbal assault, well they might listen to you. Yeah they might go away and learn how to play, great, another competent player, just what we want. The best course of action that you can take will be the toughest pill for you to swallow, yes the best thing that you can do for your bankroll is to politely (not sarcastically) say, "nice hand". What? I hear you cry in protest, complement them on getting lucky, on getting a miracle?...... Yes! If they feel good for chasing against the odds and feel that's an acceptable way to play poker, then they'll keep doing it and that my friend is plus EV for all of us.
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