The poker player expressed an unflattering opinion about the paid preflop charts that are sold by English-language poker sites or private trainers. Thomas showed someone else’s paid content right on the stream and openly criticized, while advertising his own.
Disclaimer : this material does not constitute an advertisement for any of the mentioned training sites.
Disclaimer : the author is not a professional in the topic of solvers or charts, but only retells to the reader the subjective opinion of other people. Therefore, it is worth taking what is written with a grain of salt and thinking with your own head.
Who is Thomas Pinnock?
Thomas Pinnock (Thomas Pinnock) is a little-known American who worked for Doug Polk’s Upswing Poker portal. He wrote educational articles and acted as a kind of “GTO expert”. In 2018, he went “free float”, organized his own project Zenith Poker, where he publishes free educational materials, including charts for preflop games.
The poker player is fond of mathematics and work in solvers, and also gives paid training. But with all this, he hides at what limits he plays himself and with what results.
On the poker forum 2 + 2, a user spoke about training with Thomas like this:
I hired him in 2017 to help me with preflop ranges and general preflop theory. He taught me how to work with PokerSnowie, and it has already paid off the several hundred dollars I paid him.
Thomas is theory-oriented, but has little understanding of how the game goes in practice. He is a PokerSnowie enthusiast and clearly knows how to work with it. Hire him if you want to immerse yourself in poker theory. But don’t expect to be taught how to beat your limits – with him you will talk about theory, since he has zero understanding of the exploit.
I can recommend it, but you should understand in advance who you are contacting.
Another review of Thomas’s work was also positive:
If you want to hire him to beat your limits, you will be disappointed.
If you want to hire him to better understand poker theory, then you will be satisfied. A better understanding of poker theory later allows you to grow in limits.
I played NL100, he introduced me to PokerSnowie and helped me figure out the theory. I am currently playing at NL500. Did I get up just because of his training? No, but they clearly played in my development.
What is the advantage of preflop charts
It’s cool to work in solvers and build decision trees in poker, but this won’t surprise anyone in 2021, since it has ceased to be something exclusive for high rollers. Poker schools and private trainers have long been not only sorting out the student base, but also teaching them how to work with programs of varying degrees of complexity. In addition, many simply sell courses or “products” that include preflop charts.
At its core, the preflop chart is a kind of cheat sheet on how to act preflop in certain conditions (for example, in which situations to raise first, and in which to respond with a 3bet or fold to someone else’s raise). There is no universally “correct” preflop chart. Usually, players make them for themselves, either ignore them, or take strangers.
In most poker rooms, any charts are prohibited. But regulars still find ways to use them, and that’s a fact.
Internet fraudulent play: can charts be used in 2020
Preflop charts are not built from the imagination of the author, if, of course, we are talking about normal charts. Usually they are based on long calculations in special programs that are very demanding on the performance of the PC. For this, powerful computers are usually rented with at least 256 GB of RAM (often with 1 TB or even 2 TB of RAM), since this is the main resource used in calculations. This is also the reason why educational sites sell charts for money, and not small ones.
Why Thomas Pinnock criticized the paid charts
The poker player is proud to be giving out supposedly free preflop charts on his website. In fact, only a fraction of them are available for free.
According to the creator, his charts are the best he has seen, for several reasons:
- They take into account significantly more open sizing.
- They have options for cold calling
- They are dynamic (not just a static picture for a separately calculated spot, but a special web application where you can select a specific spot)
Simply put, Thomas claims that he built his charts for a couple of years using MonkeSolver on a PC with 2 TB of RAM. It shows more branched solutions than the competition.
On May 27, Thomas decided to prove to the whole world that his product is supposedly the best on the market. He opened the paid charts Upswing, Pokerconverter, BCP, Overnight Monster and even the paid preflop high roller MMASherDog (BluffTheSpot portal) live. Some of them were presented in the form of PDF-files, some in Excel-tables, and some even as a text document in Notepad, the data from which had to be taken and inserted into the solver yourself.
Thomas bluntly criticized the “disorderly” work of competitors – someone had an obvious overpricing ($ 500 per charts preflop), someone only calculated the 2.2bb open sizing and no others, and someone did not bother to take it into account preflop. charts, in principle, the possibility of calling a three-bet, leaving only two options – either fold or 4-bet.
To put it simply, according to Thomas, all of the above training sites were selling a product that they “slapped” in a few days.
Community reaction to the scandalous stream
At the moment, the stream has received only 4,000 views, but even that was enough to provoke a violent reaction from commentators. People have accumulated a huge number of opinions about what they saw, and everyone decides for himself whom to agree with.
• Thomas acted ugly. Why on earth does he allow himself to openly criticize competitors? Watch your product and do not spoil the business of others. Nobody forces people to buy someone else’s charts, they make their own decisions.
• This guy is the hero we needed! Finally, someone brought these scammers to the surface! Serves them right, let people know!
• He will definitely be sued for copyright infringement! During the one hour broadcast, Pinnock showed dozens of other people’s charts, which he allegedly bought, although in fact he stated in plain text that many of them were “thrown off in the chat” for him. Surely some of the affected sites are already thinking how to properly file a lawsuit.
• He attacked the wrong one. On the list of those whose charts he criticized was MMASherDog – a regular expensive cash game on PokerStars, which occasionally takes the highest lines in terms of profit among all the players of the room. He already knows exactly what he is doing, and in order to criticize him, you must at least be his competitor. Recall that Thomas Pinnock does not disclose information at what limits he plays and with what result.
• “Have you seen your charts, smart guy?” Many also criticized the author’s cool charts – allegedly the first actions of the preflop are well calculated in them, but there are very few “nodes” (branches) further.