A Look at Deal-Making in Poker Tournaments

Q: What Are the Different Types of Deals That You Can Make in Poker Tournaments?

A: It's the dream of every poker player alive. You successfully navigate through a massive tournament and make it to the last couple of players. The other players want a deal. You are the chip leader, so you are going to negotiate yourself a great deal.

The question is - what are the different types of deals that can be made in a poker tournament, and which deal is the best for your situation?

Here we take a look at different deals that are available for poker tournament players when it comes to dividing the money.Here are the four different types of deals that can be negotiated in a poker tournament:

1. Even Chop.

This one is very straightforward.

Let's say that there are four players left in a tournament. You have been grinding for days, and everybody at the table is absolutely exhausted. There is $100,000 left in the prize pool to be distributed to the last four players in the tournament.

The stacks are fairly even, and everybody is exhausted. Instead of playing out the tournament, the four of you agree that you will each take $25,000, and that you will just push your stacks all-in every hand to see who takes home the trophy.

Even chops are mostly seen when two players are heads-up in a tournament with fairly even stacks.

2. Chip Chop.

This type of chop occurs when you take the remaining money that is still left to be played for and dole it out based on the percentage of chips that each players has.

For instance - let's say that there are two players left in a tournament, with first place receiving $10,000 and second place taking home $5,000. Each player is guaranteed a minimum of $5,000.

One player has 70% of the chips in play, while the other player has 30%. So, if you do a chip chop, the player with 70% of the chips will walk away with $8,500 ($5,000 second place prize money plus 70% of the remaining $5,000 that is left to play for), while the other player will walk away with $6,500 ($5,000 in second place prize money plus 30% of the remaining $5,000 that is left to play for).

These types of deals have become less common in recent years, as they have given way to the more popular ICM Chop.

3. ICM Chop.

The ICM (Independent Chip Model) Chop is the most complex of the different chops, which is why most online poker rooms will have deal-making software that will figure out the numbers for you.

With an ICM Chop, you are calculating the odds of each of the remaining players finishing in each of the remaining open slots. For instance, if there are three players left and one player has a monster stack, what are their odds of finishing in 1st, 2nd or 3rd? Well, their odds of finishing in first are very high due to their large relative stack, while their odds of finishing in 2nd or 3rd are much lower.

In short - you are assigning a dollar figure to the implied odds of each possible finish and then adding these numbers add to arrive at an ICM Chop number. The bigger your relative stack, the higher your ICM Chop number will be.

The math behind this chop method is pretty complicated, though most people agree that the ICM Chop is the fairest way to chop a tournament.

4. Custom Deal.

Of course, if you are feeling confident about your chances of winning a tournament, you can always ask for a custom deal.

In any big event, there are likely going to be players that are very nervous at a final table due to the incredible amount of money that is at stake.

If you are more experienced, you can demand a better deal from your table-mates.

For instance, maybe there is an equal chop being processed between the remaining three players. First place prize money is $1,000, second place is $500 and third is $300.

Instead of accepting $600, you demand that the other two players give you $100 each, which would make the payouts look like this:

You - $800
Player A - $500
Player B - $500

You are taking advantage of the fact that both of the other players are inexperienced and neither will want to walk away with just $300 when they could agree to a deal for $500.

This is a custom deal and if you are feel confident about your game and circumstances, there is nothing wrong in trying it out.

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