Double or Nothing Strategy
Double or nothing tournaments have a very different strategy than regular tournaments due to the fact that the payout structure is completely different. In double or nothing sit and go's half of the players double their entry fee and half the players lose it. An example would be a 10 player $20 double or nothing sit and go, where the top 5 finishers would receive $40 and the first 5 to go out with get nothing.
In this article we will discuss several changes that you should make in your double or nothing game in order to give yourself the best chance at doubling. We will start by discussing the need to play tight in the early stages and then moving to an aggressive style in the middle and late stages while still playing fairly tight. We will also talk about why you want to avoid coin flips in double or nothing tournaments and how you can survive the bubble.
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Be sure and check out the Double or Nothing Related Articles
- Double or Nothing Strategy Ebook
- 7 Double or Nothing Tips
- Double or Nothing - Early Rounds
- Double or Nothing - Middle Rounds
- Double or Nothing - Late Rounds
- Double or Nothing Sit and Go's ROI
DON - Early Levels
You should play extremely tight for the first few levels of a double or nothing. This is the stage in the tournament where you can let the fish battle it out and hopefully a few players will bust out at this stage. Your goal is to not risk chips and to preserve your stack so that you will be able to make moves in the middle and late stages. You want to only play premium hands in this stage and only bet when you feel you're ahead.
You should be avoiding coin flips throughout the double or nothing tournament, but especially in the early stages. The expected value of the risk is not worth it in double or nothing tournaments because the most you can possible win is double your entry fee. Therefore the coin flip would have a completely even expected value if you were guaranteed to win the tournament if win the coin flip. Unfortunately this is not the case and even if you double up early you may still very well not cash. As you can see coin flips in double or nothing tournaments are not beneficial to either player.
DON - Middle Stages of the DON SNG's
When the middle stages roll around the blinds will start to get big relative to your stack. Your goal at this stage is to maintain your stack so that you have enough chips to try to survive the bubble in the late stages. You can start to try to steal some blinds at this stage from good positions and with strong hands. Once the blinds get fairly big you should no longer be calling raises. Your chips are too valuable to risk and you should be either pushing all-in or folding in almost all situations. You still want to be tight in this stage, but extremely aggressive when you feel you have the best of it.
Late Stage Strategy
After about two fifths of the players in the tournament have busted you are down to the late stages. At this stage of the tournament you are just doing anything you can to survive and not bubble. If you were able to accumulate some chips with a big hand earlier in the tournament you should play it safe, not risk your chips and wait for another player to bubble. If you are one of the short stacks you should be trying to survive by stealing blinds from good positions. Target the medium stacks as these will be the players who are least likely to call you. The medium stacks have enough chips that they feel they can wait it out and win the tournament, but few enough that they would be crippled if you doubled through them.
Your double or nothing winnings will come from the loose players who do go all-in early on and happily play coin flip hands. Once these players have been eliminated it comes down to who can adjust the best and survive the bubble at the end of the game.
As long as you aren't one of the crazy players who don't understand the structure you should be able to make a profit grinding double or nothing tournaments.