Your non-showdown winnings
If you are decent poker player, you know you do things well and you do seem to dominate the online tables on which you play, yet at the end of the day you fail to show anything even remotely impressive for your efforts, you may want to take a long hard look at your red line. The red line is an interesting poker concept and no, it is not about the line that separates a winning session from a losing one.
The name of the red line comes from poker tracking software like Poker Tracker and Holdem Manager, which feature a stat page about showdown winnings, a graph basically, on which there is a red line representing your non-showdown winnings. Now, the direction that the redline is headed can be a pretty good indication of where you should snoop for leaks in your tub. How do you interpret your redline? If it is showing an upward sloping trend, then you should be okay. That means you win more money on the hands that never reach a showdown than you lose. If on the other hand, if your redline is a downward sloping one, that could be sign of trouble. The fact alone that it's slowly rolling southward is no major cause for alarm. You can have a downward sloping redline and be an overall profitable player. What is a likely sign of trouble though is when your redline exhibits a sharp downward tendency. That will certainly indicate a leak in your game as far as non-showdown pots are concerned.
What are the causes of a downward sloping redline? If you want to be a wiseguy about it there's only one cause: you putting money into the pot and then folding. In order to find the actual causes of your non-showdown leak you may want to take a second look at some of the following factors:
- Continuation betting. There are only a couple of things you can do wrong when continuation betting: doing it too often and doing it in the wrong spots will all result in your leaving of dead money in the pot, thus hurting your redline and increasing the odds for those who stay behind in the hand. Also you should never become robotic with your continuation betting. Don't fall into the one and done trap as many players do.
- Playing out of position can hurt your game in a myriad of different ways. Sending your redline southward is only one of the ways the out of position blindness will get to you over the long run.
- Chasing your draws passively (beginners are particularly prone to making this mistake), is also a probable cause for your redline woes. Don't call raises just to see whether the board hits you, don't chase your draws too far in the hand only to end up folding to pressure on the river.
- Overvaluing your weak made hands early in the hand. You are often tempted to call rather large raises early in the hand, holding nothing but a weak made hand like a low pocket pair or maybe a top pair on the flop. Such moves are almost guaranteed to have you drop dead money into the pot.
- Three-betting can be extremely harmful if done incorrectly too. I'm talking about being the aggressor in a three-bet situation, and then suddenly turning passive. There is no better way to telephone weakness and to invite your opponents to bitch-slap you with a raise that you will end up folding to.
Also be mindful of the fact that overshooting your multi-tabling abilities can also be a cause for your downward sloping redline. Most people who possess such crippled red lines play too many tables.
Whether your redline is an upward or downward sloping one, signing up for poker rakeback deal makes perfect sense. Log on to a rakeback site like rakemeback.com, or register for one of the prop deals over at pokerprops.com. The move will not patch up your redline issues, but it will certainly go a long way towards helping you cross that other redline that you really want to be above at the end of the month.