Follow thru...

Whether shooting a football, working on a task, telling a story, or playing poker; follow through is imperative. If I am shooting on goal in a match, I can go through my shot mechanics flawlessly "pre-shot," meaning I can line up on the ball, lean into it, draw my leg back, keep balance, etc. I can strike the ball perfectly as well, hitting the exact thread on the ball that I'm intending to strike. However, even more important is how well I follow thru on my shot. If I don't rotate my hips, let the leg swing forward the way it is supposed to, I'm not going to put forth an effective shot. I'm not optimizing the momentum I have goin for me through my motions. I'm not going to get the job done. If I do this often, I'm certainly not going to sell the opposing keeper that I'm capable of delivering a shot that he can respect. This pretty much takes me out of the game, as I'm not effectively convincing anyone I can hurt them with my shot. Thus, I lose the effectiveness of faking a shot, as the goalie will not bite. When I do shoot, I'm not going to have defenders flocking to me, or the keeper scrambling, worrying that I'm gonna beat him. My image is flawed significantly.

Same thing applies with poker. I'm dealt AKs UTG, I raise it (winding up for my shot, suggesting I might have some power behind that which is about to happen). Of course, some idiot always refuses to believe me. Flop comes down and misses me. Here's where follow through comes into play. If I've got the proper table image, I can issue a continuation bet, causing my opposition to either panic (respecting my shot and folding), or he'll begin to worry if he has any common sense (given that my image is correct). Turn comes, still missing me. I check, he bets into me to "see where he is." I raise his ass, letting him know that I'm gonna beat him. Given correct image, he will usually fold --- because I follow through on my betting. I put forth the image that I am not a cheap date, I do not play shit hands. When you're dancing with me, you're going to be paying for a very expensive dinner, fully equipped with appitizer, top of the line entree, and lots of drinks fo my beer guzzlin arse.

By comparison, if I raise preflop in the exact same circumstances, get the idiot caller and miss the flop and I get weak in my follow through, he's going to believe he can walk all over me. My "fake" or "bluff" will not be effective or respected. You cannot put forth a weak shot. The most important part of your play comes post flop. A monkey can be trained to play pre-flop. But it takes a cereberal assassin to play effectively once the cards hit. You're telling a story pre-flop by raising (i have a kickass hand which you're not going to beat). That flop comes, continue telling the story. Show no mercy. Follow through. Make the weak pay to catch up to you. Work on your betting and "strategerie" to help you sell the fake. Make people "dive" all around the table to stay the hell out yo way. Act like a monster, look like a monster, bet like a monster (do it smartly though).

On a side note, I have just received word that the 1 toothed monster from the pacific ocean - the Shark himself (www.pokerroadwarrior.blogspot.com) has issued a challenge to top notch professional poker playa Scott Fischmann. Shark proposes a best 4 of seven format $50 heads up in a Lights Out Aquarium of Death Match. The fish may be no shark, but he took 5th"ish" in the world heads up championship which Hellmuth won. Scotty ain't no small fish, that's "fo sho." I would suspect that Scotty will rise up and accept the challenge of the "one toofed wonder." We'll keep you updated. On that note, onto the poker haiku of the day...

"Follow thru"

Raisin up A-K,
Get the hell out of my way!
U don't, you will pay
wow, not only a haiku, but it even rhymed... lol