Monday, November 19, 2007

Where to sit

Popular wisdom is that you should sit to the left of a maniac so that you can re-raise and isolate him. That popular wisdom is an idea from limit poker, but that's not really why it's not a good idea. It's that it's based on ideas about table composition and game conditions that are seldom found any more.

If you saw the movie Rounders it has a scene that takes place in an Atlantic City cardroom with a table of 8 pros and 2 other seats that keep rotating among various tourists. Essentially the pros are taking turns bleeding chips from the tourists. In that kind of table composition the idea of isolation makes some sense becuase if you raise then the pros behind you are likely to not want to fool with it, they'll "get out of your way".

You just aren't likely to find that situation any more.

It's much better to sit on the right of that maniac so that you have as much information as possible about how the rest of the table is going to react to him before you have to make a major commitment.