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Comment for Rod

Posted By: Rod
Date: Monday, 16 December 2013, at 8:46 p.m.

In Response To: Comment for Rod (Paul Weaver)

I know that. And it is only interesting to me because of how true what you are getting at is.

I believe I can correctly gauge opponents' relative strength. I get it wrong sometimes, too. In cases where I get it wrong I am open to rapidly changing my thoughts on the matter.

An example of me getting it wrong: X. I watched X play for the first time at ___, against An opponent. I watched about 1/2 of one game. X played very poorly, by anyone's standards - several of us standing around kept throwing glances, play after play. I've since played matches with X and watched X play. That first time I watched X play it must simply been a situation he didn't understand that repeated that threw him, and my analysis. It affected the way I played my first match against him, causing me to over-correct. I'd still have made some of my "errors" but not all. I play X differently now.

An example of another player getting it wrong: Y. Y, I and an intermediate player were talking. The person asked if I played a 3. I had to get into a lengthy discussion of what it meant to play Z PR, means vs mode, SD, etc. I then pegged my most frequent PR range. Intermediate player asks Y player how he plays. He responded with "right in there". I knew that we weren't that close but No need to say anything. Over subsequent matches (several with me and one where an opponent of Y sought me out to ask me to look at positions from their match) it becomes quite clear that Y's analysis of our relative strength is off - too long, boring and unnecessary to get into the specifics. Will Y accept that? Don't know. (And Y's opponent.... Jesus, talk about me getting it wrong... I thought the guy was very weak - everyone does - he probably plays a 7-8, versus the 12+ I had given him credit for... I talked with him and he's spent a lot of time on XG in the past 2 years)

I know which top 10 player I would enjoy having in a chou but wouldn't play head's up (don't make assumptions here - you're likely get it wrong). I know who thinks I think I'm better than I am. I know which relatively "unknown" players are much much stronger than anyone knows. I know which players are way too close for comfort. I know which Giants I'd play cash games against all day long. I know which Giants I wouldn't play because I'd lose. I know which Giants and players I wouldn't play, not because I'd lose, but because whoever was favored it would be by such a small margin that we'd both be wasting our time. I know which players are way over-rated. And, importantly, I know how I play... Really know it... How I play on a good day, how I play on a bad day, how I play against weaker opponents and how I play against stronger opponents.

Yes, at least 90% are in their own minds, you are correct. So people can't properly play their opponents. From the moment I met him and watched him play, I've always respected Ray for his ability to play his opponent's. Ray might not seem humble but in a sense he is. And I think it is this that allows him to play his opponents as well as he does and gives him results that are outsized relative to his [considerable] strength. I am constantly humble, inside my head, about my play relative to others and am open to people outplaying me. I don't like it but I file it away and take proper account of it.

When David Presser sent me a match we played and I would have played a 3.1 but played a 5.9 because of a super backgame in one game of the match... Well, I've probably spent 60-100 hours studying backgames. And still working on them. I played Mochy and MCG and Petko probably 40 games of Mochy's prop, in total (for $) just to get my live lessons. I know I'm still making errors but I can see errors my opponents make now (everyone makes errors). I've played it (and other backgames) out over 500 times. I'll keep playing them out until I firm up all the odd rules that come into play with backgames and crazy containment issues under weird circumstances.

The fact that people got upset and thought I was bashing Petko when I put a specific PR to his play just shows how poorly people are able to judge their own play. In sure you had everyone thinking... Well, Petko has to play better than that because I play X PR and Petko is Y better than me, so he has to play lower than rod said. Except they are completely off on their Y!

You're correct. People have written books about the general phenomenon. It afflicts most people.

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