Ryan Laplante is a World Series of Poker bracelet winner with more than $2.1 million in lifetime live tournament earnings. The Card Player columnist and co-founder of training site Learn Pro Poker is well known on Twitter for his popular polls that break down hands and poker strategy concepts. In early July of 2019 Laplante posted a poll that asked his followers about their expectations when they sit down to play a tournament.
When I sit down to play I expect to play well and then…:
— Ryan Laplante (@Protentialmn) June 29, 2019
Of the 400 players who responded to Laplante’s poll, only 32 percent of voters said they expected to bust outside of the money, while the other 68 percent either planned on making the money, running deep or even making the final table. Laplante told Card Player TV in a recent video interview that this demonstrates that many poker players have unrealistic outlooks about how they should perform in any one event they play.
“I feel as though most people have a misconception about what should really be expected when you are playing a tournament, and what a pro expects when playing a tournament,” said Laplante. “I feel that having the right mindset about this really helps in dealing with tilt, not being frustrated with results and trying to be a lot more decision-oriented. If you just focus on how well you are playing and how good the decisions are that you are making, via that approach, you will do well eventually. Poker tournaments, especially, are a game for the long run.”
In the video, Laplante goes on to discuss why it is important to understand and accept that you will lose money in most tournaments that you enter, and also reminds players that it is hard to get a statistically significant sample size in live tournament poker. Laplante explains that it is possible to see variance greatly affect your results (either positively or negatively) over the course of months or even years.
Check out the full video below for all of Laplante’s insight on setting realistic expecations: