Why Not All Smart People Are Good Poker Players

Mon, 06 Oct 2008 10:55

Why Not All Smart People Are Good Poker Players

Smart people, most people believe, always dominate poker games. However, there are many sorts of intelligence valued in poker – and it is good to be reminded that “wisdom is better than knowledge.” In the context of poker, smartness does not simply mean the ability to answer definite questions answered by complex logic.

A real genius can answer questions with no definite answers. That is why not all people with a PhD in Physics do not make good poker players. Some math wizards make good in poker because they are smart in an array of talents and thought processes, not merely having the ability to find out exact answers. In poker, there is nothing definite. Successful poker players are multi-dimensional thinkers with the ability to digest and process indefinite data to make the best of the moment's decision. These types of “smart” people will make good poker players.

Politicians and lawyers are trained to think situationally because of the instances they face everyday. They perceive what is happening around, without actually knowing the smallest details or being sure of what causes an action -- a situation very similar to every poker game. Other players can bluff an action that is normally incompatible with the way a player deduce things based on his or her hands, and the automatic reflex is to call a bluff because he thinks he or she has the superior hand. This is not a smart move at all times. Remember that in poker, there are multiple correct answers to a given situation.