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Harrington on Hold 'em Expert Strategy for No Limit Tournaments, Vol. 2: Endgame Paperback – June 9, 2005

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About the Author

Dan Harrington began playing poker professionally in 1982. On the circuit he is known as Action Dan, an ironic reference to his solid but effective style. He has won several major no-limit hold em tournaments including the European Poker Championships (1995), the $2,500 No-Limit Hold em event at the 1995 World Series of Poker, and the Four Queens No-Limit Hold em Championship (1996).

Dan began his serious games-playing with chess, where he quickly became a master and one of the strongest players in the New England area. In 1972 he won the Massachusetts Chess Championship, ahead of most of the top players in the area. In 1976 he started playing backgammon, a game which he also quickly mastered. He was soon one of the top money players in the Boston area, and in 1981 he won the World Cup of backgammon in Washington D.C., ahead of a field that included most of the world s top players.

He first played in the $10,000 No-Limit Hold em Championship Event of the World Series of Poker in 1987. He has played in the championship a total of 15 times and has reached the final table in four of those tournaments, an amazing record. Besides winning the World Championship in 1995, he finished sixth in 1987, third in 2003, and fourth in 2004. In 2006 he finished second at the Doyle Brunson North American Championships at the Bellagio, while in 2007 he won the Legends of Poker tournament at the Bicycle Club. He is widely recognized as one of the greatest and most respected no-limit hold em players, as well as a feared opponent in both no-limit and limit hold em side games. He lives in Santa Monica where he is a partner in Anchor Loans, a real estate business.

Bill Robertie has spent his life playing and writing about chess, backgammon, and now poker. He began playing chess as a boy, inspired by Bobby Fischer s feats on the international chess scene. While attending Harvard as an undergraduate, he became a chess master and helped the Harvard chess team win several intercollegiate titles. After graduation, he won a number of chess tournaments, including the United States Championship at speed chess in 1970. He also established a reputation at blindfold chess, giving exhibitions on as many as eight boards simultaneously.

In 1976 he switched from chess to backgammon, becoming one of the top players in the world. His major titles include the World Championship in Monte Carlo in 1983 and 1987, the Black & White Championship in Boston in 1979, the Las Vegas tournaments in 1980 and 2001, the Bahamas Pro-Am in 1993, and the Istanbul World Open in 1994.

He has written several well-regarded backgammon books, the most noted of which are Advanced Backgammon (1991), a two-volume collection of 400 problems, and Modern Backgammon (2002), a new look at the underlying theory of the game. He has also written a set of three books for the beginning player: Backgammon for Winners (1994), Backgammon for Serious Players (1995), and 501 Essential Backgammon Problems (1997).

From 1991 to 1998 he edited the magazine Inside Backgammon with Kent Goulding. He owns a publishing company, the Gammon Press, and lives in Arlington, Massachusetts with his wife Patrice.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 450 pages
  • Publisher: Two Plus Two Pub; First Edition edition (June 7, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1880685353
  • ISBN-13: 978-1880685358
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 5.5 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (148 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #50,025 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

53 of 54 people found the following review helpful By Ashley Adams on June 22, 2005
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Harrington and Robertie have surely done it again -- even more powerfully than in their first volume. They have presented the authoritative text about how to think about and how to play a final table in a no limit hold em tournament. And in so doing they have redefined the game.

Harrington and Robertie introduce a whole new lexicon (at least it was new to me) about no limit poker: inflection points, red zones, dead zones, green zones, probe bets, continuation bets. Some of these phrases I had heard -- maybe even dropped to impress people from time to time. But they explain them clearly and tie them all together in a vivid strategic picture of the game.

But even if you were familiar with all of these terms and phrases that help clarify the many otherwise intuitive concepts of no limit tournament play, you've never read a simpler, clearer or more powerful explanation of them -- and all of the different stages players enter as their stack size grows and diminishes at the final table in a tournament. Similarly so with other vital concepts to no limit play like continuation and probe bets and final table play. Harrington and Robertie take the ideas that excellent players have intuitively known but until now have not fully expressed and put them into clear, simple language that any moderately experienced player can readily grasp and absorb. The hand examples, which the authors think us through further drive home the key points of this masterwork.

To say that this is a must read for every serious hold em player doesn't do it justice. It is a book that has set a new standard for poker literature. Even if you are a very experienced winning no limit tournament player, this book will help you think and play.
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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Jonathan M. Mason on June 14, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book and its companion Volume II are like my bibles. I have only being playing online poker tournaments and sit-and-go games

for three months and am already consistently winning money and getting to the final table in tournaments of 150 players or so, and have won a couple too.

When I started I bought a number of books that were well reviewed on Amazon, but frankly the rest of them are not worth a hill of beans, whereas this one is worth its weight in gold. I will not go into a description of the contents, because so many reviews have already done so, but if you want to master tournament poker, or you want a great gift for your family poker player, then look no further.

I should also say that the book is extemely well written, which is not always the case with poker books. The authorial voice is sometimes witty, and always a great friend and companion.

This book is the definitive work on the subject of no limit hold'em tournament play. I just hope my opponents don't read it.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Dan McKinnon VINE VOICE on August 4, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
There is an old adage that says sequels are never as good as the original. For the most part this saying holds true but then there is the exception. Back in 1974 a sequel came out that broke the mold of how a second movie was expected to turn out. There will be endless discussions regarding which of the 2 films was superior, but there was no denying that when the second film was made, it not only was a success, but one of the greatest movies ever made.

That film was The Godfather, Part II

With 'Harrington on Hold'em Volume II: Expert Strategy for No Limit Tournaments: Endgame', Action Dan has managed to make the impossible possible. He (along with Bill Roberte) have written a sequel so good that it is hard to distinguish the two books and easily point to a reason why the first book is better than the sequel.

With the focus being how to play the middle to end stages of a tournament, Harrington has written a book that even the most experienced of players will be able to profit from. My favorite 2 points made in this book are as follows:

1. The concept of M and why it is so important to always know where your stack is in relation to the antes and blinds.

2. When heads up, nearly any 2 cards are worth playing and you are never that far behind.

I really hope that Dan Harrington doesn't sell a lot of these books, because anyone that reads, learns, and follows the advice within is going to become a much better poker player. Employing a writing style that makes even the most difficult concepts easy to understand and follow, the end result is incredible.

I said it when I reviewed the first book, these are the most important poker books written since Doyle Brunson's Super/System which came out in the 1970s, and it is REQUIRED reading for ALL Hold 'Em players.

Wonderful, wonderful poker book by one of the best players in the world.

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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Pearl Jammer on May 7, 2006
Format: Paperback
Everyone else has pretty much summed this book up, for players with a solid game that want to take that next step, these books are the bibles of poker, specifically tournament poker.

As was already mentioned, Harrington has a reputation of being a tight, conservative player but his advice on playing when short stacked is far from conservative. He explains why it is so necessary to avoid being blinded down to the point where at least the big blind has pot odds to call with virtually any two cards.

The chapter on calculating the ratio of your chip stack to the size of the pot at the start of the hand (defined as your "M") is the single most important chapter of a poker book I have ever read. He explains why hands that are playable with a big stack are unplayable with a small one, and just as importantly how hands that are playable with a small stack are not with a bigger stack!

I consider myself a pretty good hold 'em player, but as another reviewer also said, I would so often make the money but without many chips to advance to where the real money is. Since reading this three book trilogy and Volume II in particular, my play late in tourneys when the bubble is approaching has improved immensely. The way Harrington explains things just makes so much sense. My natural style is to play fairly tight so Harrington's style is one I try to emulate. I was stunned reading the sections on short stack play, to see how many "weak" hands he recommended playing, but the way he explains why just makes sense.

And unlike so many pros that have authored books (particularly Phil Hellmuth), there is little mention of reading opponents based on physical tells, but more along the lines of being able to determine an opponent's holding based on what style they play.
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