General strategy discussion.

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Postby Nitandeaughs90 » Fri Jun 02, 2006 9:06 pm

I love playing soooooooted connectors especially in position. Phil Gordon brings up that in tourney play he calls raises with sooooted connectors in position when he has a chiplead in a tourney in hopes of making a hand or stealing the pot if his opponent doesn't have a premium hand. Of course this depends on your opponents chip count.
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Postby Hili1986 » Sat Jul 29, 2006 12:55 pm

Basic strategic knowledge is critical for any poker player and while poker strategy is highly complex, some of the basic factors that influence good play can easily be explained.

Be patient - Fold early and often. Top Hold'em players might fold 80% of their hands before the flop. The idea is to only play when you have an advantage. The sad truth is, most of the time you don't have an edge and you can tell just by looking at your first cards. By folding a lot early, you give yourself a stronger average hand when you do play. That makes it easier to follow the second rule.

Be aggressive - Don't be afraid to raise. The fewer opponents that are in the pot with you, the more inclined you should be to raise instead of call. Often the best choice is to raise, next best is to fold and the worst choice is to call. The exception is when there are a lot of other players in the pot. Now the odds are that somebody has a pretty good hand. In this case you can fold your medium-strength hands and call with good draws.

Know when you're beat - Don't be afraid to fold when you know you're beat.

Get inside your opponent's head - What do you think he has? What do you think he thinks you have? What does he think you think he has? If you can outsmart your opponent on this level, you have the advantage. But it takes practice.

Know your opponents - If mathematics was the only skill required for winning, the best players would all be mathematicians, and they aren.t. Knowing your opponents is equally important. Observe their actions at the table. Analyze their decisions and the choices they make.

Know your table image - How other players at the table perceive your play alters the way they play. If they think are you a tight player, they will be less inclined to call your raises; if they think you are an overly-aggressive player who frequently raises with marginal hands, they will be more inclined to call. Good poker players are able to vary their style in play to take advantage of the present situation and to make their play less predictable.

Special Tips for Beginners - Every poker player was a beginner once upon a time, and that probably meant they were bad players. If you think you fall into this class, does it mean you should give up the game? Absolutely not! Even Michael Jordon was once cut from his high school basketball team and look what he accomplished. If you are just starting out, don't be discouraged by your current skill level. You can improve and a few simple guidelines can go a far way in preventing beginner mistakes. Here are some to remember.

1- Playing too many hands - Hand selection is one of the most important keys to winning. Most players play too many hands. Money players know that sometimes you have to release hands, avoid unnecessary danger and dump speculative hands when the risk overshadows the potential reward.

2- Playing above your limit - Sometimes the gambling and money aspect of poker gets to people too much. They play in games they cannot afford or games where the competition is simply too stiff. When you are starting out, stick to a consistent, lower limit. Learn how to play and beat the game before you play in higher-stakes games.

3- Becoming too emotional at the table - Bad beats will happen. Losing streaks will happen. There will be annoying players at the table. Deal with it and don.t let your emotions over take your judgment.

4- Understand pot odds - Few beginning players understand pot odds, and they often call too much. If your hand needs improvement, the concept of pot odds can help you determine if you should call to see the next card on the board.

5- Over-valuing suited hands - Having a suited hand is a plus. However, you should not play a hand just because it is suited. The first two things to consider about a starting hand are the ranks of the cards and if the cards are paired. These are by far the most important factors in the value of a hand. After this, you should consider if they are suited or connecting.

6- In summary, good poker strategy involves mastering the art of choosing good starting hands, employing pot odds, and aggressively betting your winning hands.
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Postby Hili1986 » Sat Jul 29, 2006 12:56 pm

Short-Handed Limit Hold'em

Short-handed poker is played with six or less players at the table, making it necessary to give more action than you would in full-ring poker and forcing you to play more hands in order to win. It is a fun and exciting way to play and many of the top online winners excel at short-handed play. They prefer these types of games because they are less mechanical and, as such, involve an increase in psychological play and mind games with one's opponents. As well, they are able to win money from less skilled players more often than in full-ring games. This is mostly due to the fact that you play more hands and are therefore in a position to make more decisions when playing. And, remember, it is by making the correct decisions that a poker player makes their money. In addition, the added psychological factors mean that you must adapt your play to the ebb and flow of the game, thus making it harder to provide general advice that will be true for most situations. And, while advising play is difficult in all forms of poker, it is especailly so in short-handed play.

Basic Strategy

The key skill to possess for successful short-handed play is aggressiveness. In short-handed play, the price per hand is higher, you have to play more hands, and you have to play them more aggressively. You need to be raising and re-raising with many playable hands in order to isolate a lone opponent and take the lead. In Limit Hold'em, and particularly in short-handed Limit Hold'em, you must push very small edges and think about the money you will make in the long run by doing this. You cannot allow a bad streak to affect you and make you scared of pushing. Basically, most hands worth playing are now worth raising with. This is a key concept in short-handed Limit Hold'em, and is especially true when you are in late position.

Hand Selection

In short-handed Hold'em, the starting hands have a different value than they do in full-ring games. The small pairs, hands such as A-x, and big connectors like KJ and QT, increase in value, and small suited connectors such as 76s and 87s, decrease in value. This is because in any given hand you have to worry less, for example, about someone holding a bigger ace when you hold an A-x, or a bigger king when you hold something like K-T. The problem with small suited connectors, however, is that if you do not improve you cannot win with them in a showdown, whereas with A-x or even K-x, that will frequently occur. As well, you will find yourself in fewer situations that involve top-pair and kicker trouble than you likely would in a full-ring game. And, your opponents will give action with hands like J-x on a flop of Q-J-3, so most of the time you can bet a Q-2 on this flop for value all the way to the river, whereas, in a full-ring game you would be very wary about playing this hand strong.
With the small suited connectors, the pot will seldom give you the correct odds to play them pre-flop. So, for instance say you are on the button in a five-handed game, even if both players acting before you limp-in, it might still be correct to throw them away. Instead, an occasional raise is probably a better play in order to vary your game.

The Blinds

When you are in the blinds and the pot has been raised, you can worry a lot less about being dominated, and should instead focus on defending with many hands that you would have folded had the game been ten-handed. For example, in a full-ring game, holding an A-8 off-suit in the big blind when the under-the-gun player raises would result in an automatic fold against all but the worst players. However, in short-handed play, this is a hand that you would frequently re-raise with and seldom fold.

Early Position

You ought to mix-up your play by varying limping and raising with an assortment of hands. You should remain selective and not play hands like A-2 off-suit, K-9 suited, or worse. Essentially, you want a suited A-x, an A-9 off-suit or higher, a KQ off-suit, a QJ off-suit, any big suited connector like JTs, or pairs from sixes and up, and you want to frequently raise with them.

Late Position

In late position, most hands become raising or re-raising hands. Even hands such as JTs can be a re-raising hand because of the extra value you will gain from taking the lead and having position. Generally, you can re-raise with basically any pair, A-x suited, or any big suited connector.


On the flop you must continue to play aggressively, especially if you were the aggressor pre-flop and it is a heads-up pot. Short-handed poker is mostly about winning pots by being aggressive with bluffs and semi-bluffs, in particular. Most players will play any kind of flush or straight draw as though it was the nuts on the flop, and it is correct to do so in most cases. It takes experience and skill to know when to bet an unimproved AK for value on the river and when to fold top pair, and this is what you should set out to master.
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Postby Hili1986 » Sat Jul 29, 2006 12:57 pm

This single poker strategy that I'm about to
reveal is one of the BEST (and most PROFITABLE)
tips that I've given you in a long time... so
listen up:

When it comes to winning poker, most players
have "tunnel vision."

What I mean is this:

They focus only on how to WIN more pots and
larger pots... whether it's through bluffing,
calculating odds, or reading poker tells.

But what they DON'T FOCUS ON... (what I'm about
to show you)... is actually MORE important than
90% of all the other "stuff"... and can both
INSTANTLY and DRAMATICALLY increase your poker
winnings over the long term.

And that secret is this:

How to STOP LOSING big pots.

You see, there's a lot of strategies out there
for how to WIN hands... but very rarely does a
player focus on strategies on how to NOT LOSE
big hands.


Because they blame THAT PART of the game on
luck and other forces "out of their control."

The reality is, you can win tons of great hands
and gain a chip lead, but it doesn't mean
ANYTHING if you don't know how to keep it.

Think back to when Greg Raymer won the World
Series of Poker... what was the key to his
success at the final table?

The key was he had a huge chip lead AND he knew
how to keep it.

He didn't lose big hands, which is what allowed
him to keep his gigantic stack of chips and
bully the other guys around.

The concept is equally (if not MORE) important
for players who AREN'T in the chip lead...
because no matter how many pots you win, you
won't win a game or tournament if you LOSE a
lot of big hands.

Notice the "catch" here...

I didn't say, "Stop losing hands."

I said, "Stop losing BIG hands."

Because those two statements mean two TOTALLY
different things.

You CANNOT stop losing ALL hands... it's just
not realistic.

But you CAN use strategies to stop losing BIG
hands... AND... those are the more important
"turning points" of a game anyway.

So... what's this "hidden" secret strategy that
most players overlook that will allow you to
STOP losing big pots?

I thought you'd never ask...

Preventing major losses is a very complicated
and "multi-layered" concept, as I explain in
my course...

However, one of the MAJOR components and "core"
strategies behind it can be summed up in one
simple, 12-letter word:


That's right... you can literally cut down on
the number of big hands you lose by simply

And I don't mean anticipating the CARDS.

I mean anticipating THE BETS, based on what
cards COULD come out of the deck.

Here's an example that will make it clear...

Let's say you're on the button and dealt AJ
off-suit. The blinds are $1-2 and Aaron (a very
tight player) makes it $15 to play. Everyone at
the table folds and the action is to you.

This is the best hand you've seen in awhile, so
you call the bet without much hesitation.

That is where you made your FIRST MISTAKE.

You KNOW that Aaron is a very tight player that
only makes pre-flop raises with monster hands.

But you called the bet anyway... because you
didn't ANTICIPATE what YOU would do, even if
you hit your ace on the flop.

OK, so the flop hits, and the cards are: A,9,2.

Aaron comes out firing with a $30 bet right

Now what do you do?

You have to put him on AK, AQ, AA, KK, or QQ.
These are pretty much the only hands that Aaron
will make a pre-flop raise with.

Of course, he didn't check to you, so he
probably doesn't have the cowboys or queens.

So now you think about what Aaron is holding...
You put him on hands that beat yours, but
instead of folding you decide to see another
card for $30.

This is where you made your SECOND MISTAKE.

You felt pot-committed and only thought about
the $30 bet.

What you SHOULD have been doing though is
ANTICIPATING what Aaron was going to bet after
the turn card.  

Let's face it... you have to figure he's going
to fire again. Are you prepared to call ANOTHER
large bet after the turn with your AJ?

Of course not... and what you've done here is
simply dug yourself into a big hole because
you played only to win.

You got dealt a good hand and flopped the top
pair and then stuck it out in hopes of a better
card... when what you SHOULD have done is
ANTICIPATED Aaron's behavior and folded your
cards before the flop.

Hands like these happen to even the best poker
players, and you MUST develop the discipline to
fold that AJ and fold that top pair when you've
anticipated what's coming next.

Think about what your opponent is going to bet.

Think about what you'll be WILLING to bet.

Then think about what will happen after the
next cards... and then the ones after that...
and then the ones after THAT... and so on.

It's all about anticipation. If you anticipate
the different scenarios BEFORE they happen, you
will prevent big losses.

And when you stop losing big hands, you'll get
to KEEP the chips you win.

And that will help you finish in the money...
virtually every time... and lead you to a
successful poker career.

Of course, like I mentioned earlier...
anticipation is just ONE of the crucial skills
you'll need in order to kick ass at Texas Hold
'Em poker...
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Postby Rectudid3 » Sat Aug 05, 2006 2:18 pm

sirhumps wrote:i try to play semi aggresive/semi passive in the first part...only because sometimes youll come into a few big hands at the beginning which you can build up ur stack with.....so playin the waiting game isnt necessarily beneficial.....but for those of you who do....it works for some.....the way i play makes me feel more consitent!!!

That is so true..... It's amazing the hands some players are playing in freeroll games, I mean with huge raises they will still call,  just cause it's they are suited!!!!  AHHHH!!  lol       Then again if you can catch some of these players heads up with a nice hand it's a easy way to double up!

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