Author Topic: How to handle a player who leaves the tournament?  (Read 4667 times)

TomKarr

  • TDA Member & Active Poster
  • **
  • Posts: 16
How to handle a player who leaves the tournament?
« on: June 20, 2012, 01:09:48 PM »
Hello, i have a question. What should i do when someone wants to leave a tournament, but has a solid or big stack, and there is a big chance that he will not return, or he returns in 2-3 hours. What should i do in this situation? Coz the biggest problem is, when this stack moves to the final table and outlives another 4 players on final table, its money time (3 or 4 players are payed), and the player still has not arrived. Can i remove the stack and disqualify the player?

Situation: blinds are 300-600/ante50, player 1 moves all in blind, coz he needs to go, he gets 2 calls and virtually triples up, but still does not stay and goes away. But he will not return and he leaves a big stack in the tournament witch is really hard to blind out coz the stack has like 80bb+.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2012, 12:58:11 PM by MikeB »

chet

  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 733
Re: Player who leaves the tournament?
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2012, 01:54:59 PM »
Two possibilities: 

A.  If the player says he is not going to return, the size of the chip stack is not material, I would pull the chips from play and go on.  If he comes back later, I'm sorry, but you said you were not returning and your chips were pulled from the event.  No refund.

B.  If the player says he might return, I think you need to leave the chips in play and blind them off.  If the player cashes, so be it.

All this said, I would suggest you develop a house rule to cover this kind of situation.  That way you can do whatever you want in either situation, pull the chips or leave them in or ????

Chet

TomKarr

  • TDA Member & Active Poster
  • **
  • Posts: 16
Re: Player who leaves the tournament?
« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2012, 10:00:40 PM »
OK, but when the player says that he will be away for 20 minutes and comes after 2 and 1/2 or 3 hours?
Situation: guy plays tournament witch has started at 20:00, after 3-4 hours of play he decided to go away so he pushes all in and gets a lucky double up or even triple up and now has a big stack of 100bb+, but still tells me that he will go away for 30 minutes. After 2 hours that hes gone the whole final table (5 players and the stack of the away player) starts to complain about that player, coz its near to the ITM and that guy got away when the field was like 14-15 players and now he still has a decent stack and its still really hard to outblind it. Its really unfair to the other player who had reached the final table and outlast all the other players and the away guy was just putting blinds with no chance to get outblinded and still has a chance to get some money for no play!

K-Lo

  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 869
  • @AskTheTD on Twitter
    • Ask the Tournament Director
Re: Player who leaves the tournament?
« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2012, 06:08:55 AM »
If the player does not plan to return, remove the chips from play and continue.

If the player says that he will be away for 20 minutes, I would have been inclined to tell him that we will continue to blind him out until the end of level X or the next break etc. (possibly giving him say 1 hour to return), after which he will be deemed to be disqualified and we will remove his stack from play. 

As long as you plan for the possibility that he does not return within a reasonable amount of time and you make it clear to him what the consequences of not returning within that time will be, I think you have accommodated his "temporary" absence fairly, and will avoid situations like the one you describe.

K

TomKarr

  • TDA Member & Active Poster
  • **
  • Posts: 16
Re: Player who leaves the tournament?
« Reply #4 on: June 21, 2012, 06:32:40 AM »
Ok, thank you, coz i was thinking the same, just wanna to hear some other opinions :D

Brian Vickers

  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 451
  • Poker Manager
Re: Player who leaves the tournament?
« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2012, 01:34:29 PM »
In my opinion, a paid for stack should have the ability to potentially blind off into the money.  If a player tells you in advance that he will not be returning, I would give the choice to blind off or DQ, depending on the possibility of actually reaching the money (such as an emergency while at the final 2 tables or something to that effect).  If a player has just dissapeared, I would leave the chips in play until they were all blinded/anted off.  If a dead stack made the money, I would confirm the player's identity through surveillance/starting seat assignments/other players as best I could, then store it in an envelope until I saw him/her next.

TomKarr

  • TDA Member & Active Poster
  • **
  • Posts: 16
Re: Player who leaves the tournament?
« Reply #6 on: June 21, 2012, 02:42:05 PM »
Yes, its true, but this is a question of ethics and fair play, you know, coz players can start to do this on regular bases and us it as a strategy, so basically intentionally avoid action and risk minimum with the knowledge that it is very unlikely to get blinded/ante off and not get in to the money! That is mine biggest apprehension, coz you dont know if the player is doing it in case of an emergency or to "play tricky"!

K-Lo

  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 869
  • @AskTheTD on Twitter
    • Ask the Tournament Director
Re: Player who leaves the tournament?
« Reply #7 on: June 22, 2012, 11:45:43 AM »
The situations regarding abandoned stacks can be tricky.  Some of the pros and cons of leaving the stack in versus removing it were discussed in another thread:  http://www.pokertda.com/forum/index.php?topic=41.0

I respect Brian's position that a paid-for stack should be entitled to be blinded off into the money.  On the other hand, there are many other sports that have rules against entering a tournament that one knows one cannot finish.  And where a player has to quit because of injury or emergency or otherwise, he loses "by default".  It is also considered poor etiquette in many games and sports not to make "best efforts" to win... Why should poker be different? 

In my view, it is not enough to have paid for your entry, you are expected to pay and play the tourney through to completion.  I personally have a problem with an abandoned stack being able to be eligible for prize money.  Players have an obligation to protect other players in the tournament - surely having two or three absent players at a table fails to protect the players at other tables that might be full  particularly when there is a reasonable likelihood that none of the absent players are returning.  Not to mention the practical matter of a TD having to move these abandoned chip stacks around on behalf of the absent players, and keeping track of who owns which stack.  There is a difference between a player who has gone on an extended smoke/phone/bathroom break, and someone who has been gone for over an hour or two.  What point is there asking a player who might not return if he wishes to be disqualified or blinded out... If you give a player that option, why wouldn't he always choose the latter if there is even a fraction of a chance that he can cash?

Anyways, I think you can justify either position for your house rules.  If I had my way though, I would like to see a rule that gives the TD the option of disqualifying any player who has not attended to their stack for over a certain period of time (much like calling for a clock).  I think this better protects all of the players in the tournament as a whole.

Brian Vickers

  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 451
  • Poker Manager
Re: Player who leaves the tournament?
« Reply #8 on: June 23, 2012, 10:40:08 AM »
What amount of time would you recommend giving them?  Would you only do it if they gave you notice?
What's the difference between a player folding every hand or a player's hand being mucked because he's not in his seat when it comes to the "protection of the other players?"

We are talking about maybe one time every couple of weeks that this sort of thing might happen, not widespread abandoning of chips because players think that not being at the table will give them some sort of advantage of by blinding off til the money.  Even if you are on the money bubble, it's still hard to blind off til the money if you are not at the table, so I don't see any possible way to abuse it.

I know for sure at the WSOP those chips are never being removed from play and they seem to be able to handle it ok. 

diz475

  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 48
Re: Player who leaves the tournament?
« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2012, 11:21:42 AM »
Do you pick up a paid for stack at the start of a tournament (or a curtain time after the start) if the player has not shown up.  It’s the same situation, being close to the money shouldn’t matter.

If the player tells you he may be gone for a while get his players card or some kind of ID in the case he cashes

this dead stack will affect the play but all players are awaire of the situation

i say it stays in play

TomKarr

  • TDA Member & Active Poster
  • **
  • Posts: 16
Re: Player who leaves the tournament?
« Reply #10 on: June 23, 2012, 09:03:41 PM »
It affects the game and a lot, specially when it comes to ITM, players start to play faster, don´t do any big action or differently change the game strategy, just to blind/ante off the dead stack and it ruins the whole final table!

K-Lo

  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 869
  • @AskTheTD on Twitter
    • Ask the Tournament Director
Re: Player who leaves the tournament?
« Reply #11 on: June 23, 2012, 10:17:13 PM »
What's the difference between a player folding every hand or a player's hand being mucked because he's not in his seat when it comes to the "protection of the other players?"

I see your point.  But I just don't know of any other game or sport at the top of my head (paid entry or otherwise) where you can decide to physically leave the  game and the playing area (or even decide not to show up at all), yet end up in a position that makes you better off than where you were when you left the game.  In most games, it is not enough to pay to play but you have to be present to move forward or to win. I suppose tournament poker could be treated differently, but I'm not sure why.

Brian Vickers

  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 451
  • Poker Manager
Re: Player who leaves the tournament?
« Reply #12 on: June 24, 2012, 10:24:44 AM »
I'm saying, if we don't know they are coming back or not it stays.  If they inform me   
If I'm in a casino, and I'm on break, maybe I go play a slot.  Maybe I win a jackpot and it takes an hour to pay out.  I come back and I've been disqualified?  Why?  The tournament plays exactly the same as if I had just folded my hand or was on a penalty.

K-Lo

  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 869
  • @AskTheTD on Twitter
    • Ask the Tournament Director
Re: Player who leaves the tournament?
« Reply #13 on: June 24, 2012, 12:00:20 PM »
Ok. Then why should it be different if they tell you they are not coming back or that it is "highly unlikely"?  There is no provision in the rules for removing a stack unless a player has been disqualified. 

In my view, I'd rather have a rule that can be applied with greater consistency and based on some objective standard.  Either always leave the stack in, or take the stack off after it has been abandoned for a certain period of time.  I don't care which way it is (well I do care but I know we will all never agree), but at least we avoid situations where we have to defend ourselves when accused of wrongfully leaving in or taking out a stack.

Brian Vickers

  • TDA Member & Veteran Poster
  • ***
  • Posts: 451
  • Poker Manager
Re: Player who leaves the tournament?
« Reply #14 on: June 24, 2012, 12:44:15 PM »
K-Lo, my bad man.  I feel that chips should always stay on.  I was trying to give an example of when I would be OK with it if another tournament director chose to remove chips at their venue, but I re-read what I wrote and I don't think I got that point across. 

For tournaments that I run, if chips are in play, they stay in play until blinded off (with the exception that we use dead stacks during the late entry period).  But once a stack is paid for it is never removed in my events.

(On an unprofessional note: It's entertaining to me to watch how players near the money react to having an essentially dead stack at the table)