Poker Software Revealed with Matthew Hunt (theginger45)

Date: 2015-01-20
Author: Jason Glatzer

Matthew "theginger45" Hunt is constantly looking at ways he can improve his poker game and the games of his students by using a variety of poker analysis tools.  Hunt is active in the poker community, writing and blogging in the TwoPlusTwo Poker Goals and Challenges forum and giving poker advice on PocketFives, where he is currently the #2 Top Advisor. 
PokerSoftware:  What software have you used in the past, use currently, and plan to use in the future to help you analyze your games and the games of your students?
Theginger45:  The bread and butter of my coaching and analysis is to have a tool for replaying hands. Universal Replayer is simple and easy to use, but the replayers in Holdem Manager 2 and PokerTracker 4 are more detailed. For analysis, my favorite tools right now are Flopzilla, SliceEV, and HoldemResources Calculator.

As far as the future goes, I would like to start using CardRunnersEV to analyze spots in more detail, and I want to become more familiar with PokerSnowie. Plus, I just discovered a very simple and useful equity calculator called HoldEq that comes free with Flopzilla and has a couple of extra functions that many calculators don't have.
PokerSoftware: If you had to recommend a single piece of poker software to a poker player just starting to take the game seriously, which one would you choose and why?
Theginger45:  Either Holdem Manager 2 or PokerTracker 4, without question. Trying to become a winning player in today's games without using a HUD or without having software to track your performance is not a good decision. There are winning players out there who don't use software, but it's pretty likely that with a decent amount of practice, even top-class players who don't use a HUD would become better if they did use one.
PokerSoftware:  What about for post-game analysis and review?
Theginger45:  That's a tricky one. I think I'd say Flopzilla. It gives you a great idea of how different hands and ranges interact with one another and how boards progress over the course of a hand. It's more complex than a simple equity calculator, but not as hard to get to grips with as something like HoldemResources Calculator.
PokerSoftware:  What do Flopzilla and HoldemResources Calculator do that one of the many push/fold charts don't?
Theginger45:  Flopzilla is really about helping you to understand how often players have the hands you're worried about. Players think, "He might have a flush draw here" every time a flush draw comes out, but often you check Flopzilla and based on their pre-flop range, the villain only has a flush draw 9% of the time or something similar.
HoldemResources Calculator is infinitely more valuable than a push-fold chart. The limitations of push-fold charts are that while knowing un-exploitable shove ranges is useful, the ranges change according to the stacks behind you at the table, not just your stack. If you have 18BB, but the stacks behind have 4BB, 12BB, 7BB, and 9BB, knowing an 18BB un-exploitable shove range is pretty irrelevant. HRC can tell you un-exploitable shove ranges for specific situations as well as exploitative shove ranges if you know villains' calling ranges, plus raise-fold and raise-call ranges and a lot of other stuff too.
PokerSoftware:  How much different are the hand ranges to shove in HoldemResources Calculator compared to a push/fold chart?  Should someone just starting out hop right into HRC and forgo push/fold charts?  Is there any value to keeping a push/fold chart near us when we are playing as a guide?
Theginger45:  In some situations, they'll be pretty similar, and in some they'll be completely different. As with everything in poker, it depends on the situation. I don't necessarily think push-fold charts are bad for those just starting out because in most cases adhering to a chart is going to lead to more profit than simply using your intuition (since most beginners tend to fold too much on short stacks), but push-fold charts can lead to bad habits.

I would say keep a chart on hand if you feel it's useful to you, but work away from the table on developing your skills so you can identify instances in which the chart is less useful. It's very important to know that un-exploitable poker is not always the most profitable way to play, especially against weak opponents.
PokerSoftware:  You mentioned a couple of other programs: Slice EV and CardRunners EV.  What do you expect to get out of these programs that you can't from HoldemResources Calculator and Flopzilla?
Theginger45:  SliceEV has a really useful fold equity calculator that I use a lot. It's great for knowing exactly how profitable your bluffs and semi-bluffs are. CREV is probably one of the most advanced bits of software out there. It allows you to calculate the EV of an entire hand based on different branches of your decision tree and figure out post-flop spots in more detail than is usually possible. It's probably the only piece of software that can accurately measure the EV of certain post-flop situations.
PokerSoftware:  How can one go about getting coaching from you?
Theginger45:  I have a variety of coaching services available that people can check out at, and they can also tweet me @theginger45 for more information.

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