One of the types of starting hands that players love to hate, but hate to love is suited connectors. The reason for this hate/love relationship is that when a player decides to enter a pot with these deviant little guys, either they are going to be way ahead or way behind in the hand with very little room in between.
Out of all the possible starting hands that players can enter the pot with, pocket pairs tend to be one of the most difficult for many players to play, both pre-flop and on the flop. From my experience, this is because players either tend to over play or over value their pocket pairs or depending on the strength of the pocket pair, do quite the opposite and play them too passively or not value them enough.
To better explain my thoughts, I have included some examples below as well a few thoughts on how to better approach pocket pairs so that you can be as profitable as possible when dealt them.
If everyone played poker the same way then it is very likely that the game would become boring and lose its luster very quickly, not to mention that it would be extremely unprofitable.
Fortunately, not everyone plays poker the same way. In fact, several common player types frequently grace the felt: passive, loose aggressive and tight aggressive, with each of these player types bringing their own strategy that enables them to be profitable in their own way.
Now, this probably leads you to wonder, which playing style is best for me? In other words, which playing style will prove to be the most profitable?
When playing in sit n go’s and tournaments, becoming short stacked is virtually inevitable. Whether it is due to poor play, a bad beat or just simply being blinded away, every player will face a time where their tournament life is on the line with very few options to resort to.
When this unfortunate situation happens, do you just give up? I mean, it is has to be completely difficult to come back from the dead, if not impossible. So, why even bother?
From a poker player’s perspective, nothing is more important than analyzing your own game in attempt to find your leaks so that you can plug those leaks up and improve so that your profits will improve as well.
Generally, the first thing I look at when analyzing my game is my ROI. For those of you that don’t know, ROI stands for Return on Investment and is simply a figure of how much you made in comparison to how much you invested. This will be the one of the first things to check simply because most people realize there is a problem when they have not been showing a profit or have been inconsistent in comparison to previous months.
Since making money playing poker isn’t all about hitting huge hands, it’s important to know about some techniques that will help you pick up small pots. One of the most critical of these is blind stealing.
Blind stealing is pretty simple. What exactly is it? It’s exactly what it sounds like. Raising into an opponent’s blinds in hopes of them folding. Some beginners have trouble believing that this is profitable- after all, when you win, it’s usually only 1 or 1.5 BB’s. If you get raised though, you could lose your 3 BB’s. Why go through the effort for such a small return?
The idea behind floating is pretty simple. The theory is that aggressive players raise a lot preflop, and miss the flop more often than they hit it. Therefore, an opponent who c-bets often tends to be bluffing a lot of the time. Floating is simply calling an opponent’s c-bet on the flop, in position, with the intent to steal the pot on a later street (usually the turn).
Floating is a technique best used against players with at least some strategic skill. Against total beginners, it’s useless. However once you start running into TAGs and more generally aggressive players, you’ll find that floating is an effective tool that can be used to defend against over-aggression.
If you’ve read through all of the Pokkercards strategy articles, you realize what an important role position plays in poker strategy. Playing in late position is awesome, while playing in early position, quite frankly, SUCKS! Although having a crappy hand in early position is bad, it gets worse- having a marginal hand in early position. What the heck do you do with one of those?
Are you afraid of 3-bet pots? Most poker players are. It’s tough to play a solid game in the face of aggression. Nobody really knows how to handle it. Usually the 3-bet phobia stems from a simple lack of experience in aggressive situations. If you want to gain a significant edge on your opponents, you can- by learning how to master 3-bet pots.
You know from learning about postflop play that much of your profit comes from exploiting tilting players. The reverse can be true if you aren’t careful- other players could profit off of your tilt. How do you like the sound of that? You probably don’t. If you don’t mind the thought, stop reading here. You aren’t a poker player, you’re a gambler. No use learning strategy in that case. If you want to leak-proof your game however, read on. Strengthen your mind and watch your strategy become impenetrable.
Why tilt costs you money: