A Great Double Or Nothing Sit And Go Strategy Article

I found this on another website . I’m not sure if someone has already posted this or a link to it but it’s the best , most concise guide to DoN strategy I’ve seen.

Online ***** – Double or Nothing SNG Tournaments
By Jennifear | Published Feb 09 2009, 09:58 AM

The latest craze in the ever-changing poker world is the Double of Nothing SNG Tournament. A Double or Nothing SNG is a tournament with 10 players that pays the last five players double their buy-in amount. Although it’s not a new form of poker, the recent addition of this game type to the more established poker sites has caused this boom. Like any new game, there is little information available on proper strategy. The purpose of this article will be to give you an overview of how and when your strategy should change. If you have contemplated switching to Double or Nothings, but haven’t made the move yet, the section of this article defining the advantages of playing these events will be of particular interest to you. While this article is geared towards poker players who are just learning how to play these events, I’m positive that many experienced players will learn something as well.

Pregame Strategy

– Before the game starts, check out the lobby. If the second SNG yet to go off has four or more players registered, you have found a table with too many regulars. If you sit here, the other regulars, plus the rake, will eat into your profit enough that this game is not worth playing. It is likely to go off with 6-7 regulars, and there may not be enough fish to spread the wealth between everyone.

– It is vital that you identify the regulars. Know who is who, because you are going to play one type of game against the regulars, and a totally different game against the random players.

– Have enough buy-ins in your bankroll to play your game comfortably. For professionals, that’s about 40 buy-ins and for recreational players who can easily replenish their bankroll, that’s about 20 buy-ins.

Before You Play: Basic ICM Strategy

– In a $10 SNG, your starting equity is $10 and should you double up, to 3000, it becomes $15.55.

Player Chips Equity

Player 1 3000 $15.55

Player 2 1500 $10.55

Player 3 1500 $10.55

Player 4 1500 $10.55

Player 5 1500 $10.55

Player 6 1500 $10.55

Player 7 1500 $10.55

Player 8 1500 $10.55

Player 9 1500 $10.55

What this means to you is that, should you end up all-in on hand one, the chips that you risk are worth $10, and the chips that you stand to gain are worth $5.55. $10/$15.55 = 64.5%, so you’ll need to win an early all-in confrontation approximately 2/3 of the time just to break even! Try not to get committed in any pot that you don’t expect to win at least 2/3 of the time.

Just to give you an idea of how tight that means you need to be, check out this fight between KK and {JJ+, AK}:

Hand Pot equity

KK 62.6%

{JJ+,AK} 37.4%

– When two players collide, the missing equity doesn’t just disappear. It goes to the other players.

What this means to you is that, as in the example above, when two players collided, one player loses $10.00, and the other player won $5.55. That leaves $4.45 of “missing equity”. That $4.45 doesn’t just disappear from the game. It gets divided up among the remaining players. In this case, $.55 goes to each of the eight players that were not involved in the clash. So, if two players do battle on the first hand, and one doubles up, your 1500 chips that were worth $10.00 are now worth $10.55. As you can see, if there is one really bad player in your SNG, this nice benefit can basically eliminate the rake for you. Later, as more players are eliminated, the “missing equity” from these clashes becomes greater, and gets divided up among less players. This means that your benefit from watching two other players collide later in the game will become immense!

Early Game Tactics

– To open from early position, you need a very strong hand. I would recommend opening only with big pairs and possibly AK from very early position. Feel free to play a wider range of hands in late position if your opponents in the blinds are 16-tabling regulars that are only playing 10% of the time or less against a raise.

– It is very seldom correct to flat call. In general, re-raising or folding is the most appropriate avenue to take.

– Don’t do too much set mining. In most games, set mining requires approximately 11-1 to 15-1 implied odds to profitably try. However with the difference between cEV and $EV being as great as it is (as in the example of risking $10 to win $5.55), you now need 20-1 to 24-1 implied odds to set mine! Therefore, as a general rule, don’t set mine, even at the early levels, unless you are limping behind in late position in a multi-way pot.

– Your main motive at this level should be to preserve your stack, because if you succeed in doing so, this offers you the chance to threaten a large raise at the later levels. If you can maintain even just 1300-1400 chips, you’ll really put the pressure on even a bigger stack to fold in the later stages. Also, tighter play may earn your raises some respect later in the game when that respect might make the difference.

Mid Game Tactics

– Once the antes have kicked in, the incentive to steal blinds is much greater. While the antes seem small, in relation to the blinds they are actually very great. By the time 50-100 rolls around, stealing blinds becomes an important strategy to preserve your stack.

– Be aware that the shortest stacks will need to make a stand, and as a general rule, avoid playing pots where you are not at least 70% to win. This is especially important in games where more than two players have busted.

– Fighting and losing against a big stack is a disaster at this point if your stack is healthy. With a healthy stack, you generally need to win 80-85% of your pots against them. Keep in mind that usually amounts to calling with AA only, and sometimes, not even that!

Endgame Tactics

– With 6 players remaining, so long as you are not in last place, the value of your chips is likely 85% of the final prize or greater. In a $10 SNG what that means to you is that your chips are worth approximately $17 to you, even though the prize is $20. Given this, calling shoves with even aces is often borderline, and definitely a no go if you are in 4th or better.

Player Chips Equity

Player 1 2500 $16.67

Player 2 2500 $16.67

Player 3 2500 $16.67

Player 4 2500 $16.67

Player 5 2500 $16.67

Player 6 2500 $16.67

– If you have a large stack, it is NOT your responsibility to eliminate players. Your responsibility to yourself is to finish top 5. Don’t worry about calling with exceptional pot odds, or whatever. Your main priority is to avoid disaster. There will be times that raising or shoving is still appropriate, especially if a regular is sitting on a lot of chips behind you.

– Push wide into regulars who are intelligent enough to fold, and push very tight against loose players when your stack is healthy. It is your responsibility to range the potential caller(s). There are many situations where pushing any two is correct against regulars, and pushing only the top 15% of starting hands or so is correct against others. Therefore you cannot solely rely on proper ICM recommendations, and/or knowing the Nash Equilibrium of a situation. You must adjust, so the slightest difference in an opponent’s calling range can often completely change the range you should be pushing with!

– Never limp pre-flop with intent to trap someone into shoving, even with AA. In other types of poker, the advantage of trapping with aces is the strong edge it gives you when you fish someone in. In Double or Nothing events, if you catch someone, you are in a situation where you are 80-85% to win, but you need to win 65-90% of the time just to break even, so your edge isn’t large enough to trap. It’s hardly a disaster if you raise and win the blinds, and that result will usually be just as favorable to your winning chances.

– Time the blinds if you can. At key times, consider stalling to allow the blinds to move up. While this may cause the table to have a vendetta against you, if you can bring the blinds up to the point where someone else is all-in on their BB, you very well might be able to back into a top 5 finish, even with a micro stack!

– If you are in last place, and the player to your left won’t fold to your shoves, it may be worth it to make a borderline call on another hand to save your skin.


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