Ted Forrests Loose OB Experiment

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Ted Forrest i s widely regarded as one of t he best poker players i n the world today. A few years ago, Ted tried a little experiment with 08B that had him playing every hand, before t he flop, to see if he could stiil end up winning money. 0bviously, he was trying out t he l oosest s trategy of all. Ted tried this experiment i n some of t he biggest poker games i n the world, i n both Los Angeles and Las Vegas. I n other words, he tried it against s ome tough competition. So for more than one month Ted played every hand of 08B, e xcept t hose t hat included three of a kind (6-6-6-). Amazingly, h e actually managed to make money playing almost every hand before the flop.

0f c ourse, Ted is a superstar poker player, but stiil, t o end up winning money while playing every hand before the flop for a month seems unbelievable t o me! S ince I knew that Ted had tried this experiment, I asked him about it l ater, and he replied, " Playing every hand before the flop certainly i sn't t he best way to play the game. To win the most money possible, you need to play a l ot fewer hands." I think the fact t hat Ted could play every hand before the flop, for one month, shows us how much luck there is in this game—and what a great player Ted is. What i t really teHs me i s t hat he must have played all t hese hands extremely well o n the other t hree betting rounds.

So here we have Ted Forest's experiment, which stands in stark contrast to the theory "play the A-2 hands only." The supertight " A-2 only" theory worked for me for a day in a world championship event ( and has worked well for me at other times as weH), and yet Ted managed to play t he s uperloose theory and win money. Playing every hand and playing only a very few hands can both win money.

Well, then, do I guess that no matter how many hands you play before the flop, you'l win money? Not exactly—keep in mind that you aren't Ted Forrest or Phil Hellmuth. Bear in mind, also, t hat 08 B is a fairly new game, and I suspect that Ted couldn't win money while playing every hand for even two weeks in today's high-limit games. The point of all of this is that different s tyles c an work in 08B, but i f you play any style that has you playing close t o half of all t he hands, I 'l b et you won't e nd up winning any money—at least beyond a few very lucky weekends.

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