By RYE Coach Asaban
Since I started teaching inexperienced players spin&go content, I have encountered the same mistakes with almost every student. In this article I want to lay out the most common mistakes that new spin&go players tend to make and show you how to effectively avoid making them. If you enjoy the article, consider joining the RYE discord server for more content in our recently launched spin&go channel.
1. Not playing enough hands in the headsup
Playing too few hands heads up is the most common mistake new players tend to make. Especially coming from other variants, players are not used to playing a very high VPIP. However, the structure of spin&go’s benefits a very high VPIP in heads up. Try to go for >90% for most stack sizes. Of course, you can’t just open raise every hand. Instead go for the limp with your weaker hands. Especially in lower stakes there is no need to balance your range.
During heads up we should aim to play a VPIP that is as high as possible. According to GTO we should be playing 95% of our hands with 13bb+ from the small blind. The reason being we get extremely good odds and are able to realize our equity quite well in position.
In reality it also makes a lot of sense, because the population plays very passive and tends to play very honestly in limped pots; while isolating very little. Playing exploitative you could even go for 100% VPIP and only adapt slightly if your opponent isolates a lot.
2. Not playing enough continuation bets
Cbets are a very important tool, especially in a game with a super fast structure and a lot of played hands; you want to fight for small pots. The easiest way to do so is to cbet a lot. In lower stakes cbetting is an auto profit spot against most opponents. If you go for a 1/3 potsize cbet you only have to be successful one out of four attempts in order to make a profit. Therefore, you should always go for the cbet unless you have a very good reason not to. Cbetting doesn’t just make sense for raised pots. You should also go for cbets in pots where you limped preflop. The fact that the population tends to check/raise very little makes this play even more powerful.
Parts of our opponents’ range hit this flop very well and he will also have some gutshots here. At the same time villains range is extremely wide, which is why he will fold at least 40% of his range to our cbet. Hands like Q7, 84 or J7 failed to connect completely and will therefore give up. Furthermore, we have the opportunity to barrel scare cards aggressively on the turn, in order to get folds from weak 6x or 3x hands. Cbetting is thus the best choice.
3. Playing Donkbets
Donkbets have their name for a reason. In most spots they just complicate things, while not achieving a whole lot. If you consider playing a donkbet think about the alternatives first. Most of the times a check/raise is the better solution. Sometimes a check/call or even a check/fold make more sense instead. You will find very few spots where that is not the case. While a solver might suggest that donk betting is the best play in certain spots, I highly recommend not implementing it into your game. Donk bets can be very difficult to balance with checks, and I believe the EV gain of a perfectly executed donk betting strategy is very little.
4. Choosing the wrong bet sizings
Now that you play a lot of hands and cbet most of them you need to adjust your betsizing. While the very common 50% potsize sizing is convenient, it is also suboptimal in most spots. Try to decide between a small sizing (f.e. 35% potsize) and a big sizing (f.e. 65% potsize). You can use the smaller sizing for most value bets where you don’t have to protect against draws/overcards, as well as for your bluffs. In situations where you face a very draw heavy board go for the bigger sizing instead, to make it more expensive for your opponent to follow his draw.
We raise from BU and get called from BB. Our range is way stronger compared to villains range. On this kind of board structure we should go for a high cbetting frequency, while choosing a very small sizing to do so. Against a 1.5bb cbet a lot of villains hands have a very difficult decision, especially because the king hits our range so much better.
In general we should aim for small sizings and a high cbet % due to the small stacksizes and wide ranges. You should only forego your cbet if the board structure is very dynamic. A good example would be a T87 board. In these cases you don’t want to auto cbet, but go for a polarized range instead. A hand like KT would want to cbet big for example in order to protect.
5. Missing soft skills
Soft skills are very important in poker. The ability to handle losses, getting a grip on your hard to play opponent, managing your time efficiently and balancing your play time against the time you need to invest in order to improve your game are all equally important for a good poker player. For spin&go’s you should make sure that you have a solid bankroll management (100 buyins+). You should also invest enough time to effectively improve your game on a regular basis. I recommend session reviews on a regular basis to identify problems that you don’t realize while playing. Last but not least, you should have a very solid mindset. Spin&Go’s have a very high variance due to their structure. If you are tilting easily or can’t handle losses spin&go’s are not your game. It is absolutely not uncommon to run several hundred buyins under your expected value without doing anything wrong. Dealing with those situations is tough but necessary in order to succeed on your way to crushing spin&go’s.
My name is Asaban and I am a professional poker player and coach for more than 9 years. In the past I coached more then two hundred poker players, ranging from absolute beginners to highstakes players. I also designed MTT courses and published instructional videos in German and English. In all those coachings I developed a deep understanding for the most common and critical mistakes that new players, as well as advanced players, make. If you want to effectivly improve your results I would be happy to work with you.
I personally play MTT’s up to 215$ on a regular basis. Lately I also invested a lot of time into Spin&Go tournaments and similar formats which I beat with a decent win rate. Together with a high stakes Spin&Go regular I founded a small team (Team BAStards) that stakes Spin&Go players, while helping them to improve their game on a consistent basis at the same time.
Group coachings, as well as more packages are available on request. I also offer free coachings and content as part of a staking deal for Spin&Go’s. Contact me for further info. All of my coachings are available in English or German.
What does a coaching look like?
That is entirely up to you. My suggestion is a session review. You prepare a hand history and we look through it, to analyse your biggest mistakes and which topic you should improve on. After every coaching you will receive a written feedback on our findings. My biggest focus is to enable you to work on your own game and improve it by yourself.
Alternatives would be in depth database analysis including examples and ways to improve on your biggest flaws, reviews of your live play, various single hands or thematic coachings targeting very specific leaks.
Spin&Go Coachings are only available within longterm staking deals. Feel free to ask me for details.
What you need:
Headset or good microphone setup