Don’t Tap the Fish Tank!

As your skill level increases, you will begin to distinguish between great players, good players, beginners, and just downright awful players. For the latter of these players, we have a term for them.

Fish.

Fish are your table’s ATMs if you play them properly and treat them properly.

This post was originally geared toward beginners, but all too often I see and hear about good players violating the topic of this post. So, this really is for everyone.

DON’T TAP THE FISH TANK!

What happens in a real fish tank when you hit or tap on the glass? The fish get pissed or scared and swim away.

Too many people feel it is their job to berate and humiliate the bad players at a table when they make a bad move against them. They get mad because they’re such a good and smart player and they can’t believe this fish just sucked out on them.

Well, if you’re berating the fish, you’re not as smart as you think.

First of all, why, at the poker table, would you want to tell someone how to play better? That’s just stupid.

You want the fish to continue to play poorly.

And secondly, why would you want to tap the fish tank? You want these players to stick around as long as possible. Berating their play and humiliating them will likely make them leave the table. Then you will be the one getting an earful from the rest of the table.

Look, Phil Hellmuth and Mike Matasow are superb players. Emulate their styles, their reasoning abilities, their skill sets; but never emulate their behaviors towards fish when they are at the table.

You want the fish to stick around. Unless they’re positive, keep your thoughts to yourself and the fish will stay.

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About ChiGuy22

I write things.
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2 Responses to Don’t Tap the Fish Tank!

  1. Alton says:

    You are absolutely right. One of the best ways to identify a really good player is to watch their reaction when the fish sucks out. If they say “nice hand” in a sincere voice and then reload for the table max, watch out. If they berate the fish for their bad play, then they don’t understand poker as well as they think they do.

    On top of this, I’ve found that if I force myself to say “nice hand” after getting sucked out on, it tends to help me avert the tilting feeling going on in my stomach. What I’m really saying is, “nice hand, keep playing that way so I can take all your money.”

    Of course, we also need to realize that sometimes its just the fish’s day. Everyone gets lucky sometimes. If they didn’t they wouldn’t keep playing and poker would be a much tougher game. So be glad when the fish gets lucky, after all it’s easier to get your money back from a fish than a shark.

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