Thursday, December 18, 2008

Badugi mofo

The crudely stated reality is this: I'm a $2.20 badugi pro, bitches.

Finished third in a pot-limit badugi tournament (128 runners) last night and thought I was on my to yet another big win when we got three-handed. but had my first-draw, 9-high badugi draw crushed by my opponent's first draw, 7-high badugi.

(For the unitiated, a demographic that included me just a month ago, badugi is a four-card, triple draw game where you tried to try to get four cards of four different suits, none of which are paired. The best hand is A-2-3-4 rainbow. Origins of the game supposedly are Korean.)

The pot-limit version of badugi is far trickier than limit. Like other poker games, with limit badugi you mostly need to show down the best hand to win. In pot-limit tournaments, especially when the blinds are large, position and aggression rule the day. Yet you also find yourself in situations where you need to think things through and determine whether a thin call might not be appropriate. I know. It's no different in NLHE or other big bet games. But it has helped me look at poker in new ways. For whatever reason, I have an affinity toward lowball games.

Give the micro buy-ins for these tournaments, the rewards for going deep are insignificant. Yet this experiment has been interesting and I can believe I've been learning lessons along the way that should prove relevant no matter what form of poker I play.


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