September 26, 2011

Your Redline and Your Non-Showdown Winnings

I suppose it’s safe to assume that those who become poker props are more than mere recreational players. By taking advantage of the best rake rebate deals out there, poker props create unparalleled odds for themselves, odds which most often help them get into profitable territory. Once someone sees poker success, his interests for the game will definitely soar and he will look for other ways to still better his odds.
Thusly, I deem it fit to get a little more technical and without becoming overly nitpicking, try to delve into some of the more subtle aspects of profit generation at the green felt.

The redline – a concept just about every poker player knows like the back of his hand these days. In poker stat trackers like Holdem Manager and Poker Tracker, the redline represent one’s non-showdown winnings, that is the amount of money he/she wins when not reaching the showdown, versus the amount of money lost on similar hands. If one goes to the graph section of one of the above mentioned stat trackers, the non-showdown winnings will show up as a red line – hence the name.
If the red line is sloping upward, everything is A-OK: it means that our player wins more money on non showdown hands than he loses. If the red line is a downward sloping one, it means the exact opposite.
Does it mean that it takes an upward pointing redline to be successful? Not necessarily: there are players out there who possess downward sloping redlines and are still profitable players. It all comes down to the playing style, but one thing is quite certain: if your redline is a nasty, sharp downward slope, it means you may just have come across the very reason why you fail to make money or break even despite the generosity of the poker prop deal you’re enjoying. Sharply southward redlines mean that you may be losing so much money on non-showdown hands that you fail to make up for it on the showdowns that you win, and that’s a major problem.

What exactly is the cause of such sharply downward-sloping redlines? To put it bluntly: putting money into the pot and then folding. Every time you stuff money into the pot, whether it’s in the shape of compulsory bets (blinds) or voluntary ones, your redline takes a hit. If you do it often enough, your redline will take up the dreaded downward-sloping shape, which is the herald of financial sustainability issues.

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