Of all the many calculations, estimations, and other mental gymnastics we must perform at the poker table, counting outs would seem to be the simplest. You figure out how many cards can help your hand and then contrast that with how many cards are left on the deck. For example: You call in late position with A-8 of diamonds and five of you see the flop come down K-9-2 with two diamonds. Now you have an excellent draw with nine outs (the nine remaining diamonds) to the absolute nuts, as long as the board does not pair on the turn or river.
Few things in poker are more exciting andintoxicating than a raising war. If you’reone of the combatants, at what point—if ever—do youfinally slow down and consider that your opponent mighthave you beaten? If you’re caught in the middle of thewar, is it best to let your hand go or stay in for what’ssure to be a bumpy ride and a huge pot?
Nowadays it’s almost de rigueur to multi-table online, with some players taking on as many as 20 tables at once. But is multi-tabling all that it’s cracked up to be? Is it a surefire path to poker riches, or are we toggling ourselves and our bankrolls into poker oblivion?
The shootout tournament is a mongrel, poker’s crossbreed between a multi-table tourney and a single-table sit ‘n’ go. Technically it’s a multi-table event, but for all practical purposes a shootout plays like a bunch of single table satellites.
There’s a hierarchy of thought in poker... ascending Levels of thinking about the game. Not surprisingly, typical suckers are only able to think on the first level. An intelligent game of poker doesn’t even begin to exist until you reach Level 2, but truly skilled players should be able to think at least up through Level 4.
In Texas hold’em, if one player begins the hand with a wired pair and his lone opponent holds two overcards both larger than that pair, this is said to be a coin flip. Before the flop each player has about a 50/50 shot at winning the hand. Something like 9-9 versus A-K would be a very common coin flip scenario. But if the pocket pair is deuces then any two unpaired cards—provided that one of the two cards is not a deuce—in the opponent’s hand would produce the same result.
Contrary to what many people believe, the “show one, show all” rule is not really about the cards per se. It does not mean that if, for whatever reason, you expose one of your hole cards that you will then be obligated to show both of them.
“Don’t tap on the aquarium” is a well-known catchphrase among poker players, originally credited to poker pro Phil Gordon. The basic gist of this saying should be obvious: Don’t scare away the fish. It’s never a good idea to berate, insult, or in any way embarrass bad players at the poker table—even when one of those bad players has just put a horrific beat on you. Perhaps especially then. Sure, it’s bad manners but much more important than that, it’s bad business.
1. "Small suited connectors under-the-gun? Yeah, let's see a flop!" One of the worst and most expensive leaks is playing too many starting hands-especially out of position. But too many players get sucked into playing substandard hands out of boredom, frustration, or just plain lack of discipline. Do this once, maybe twice, and it isn't a big deal. Do it repeatedly and it's a great way to siphon off chips.
Some players attempt to artificially prop up their poker results with a strategy known as "hit and run." This style of play involves joining a game and sitting down just long enough to win a big pot or two-and then immediately quitting. This way, the player ensures himself of leaving the game with a win. He can make his exit basking in the warm and fuzzy feeling that accompanies winning, and he can tell his spouse, friends, and siblings that he made money in his game and is therefore a winning poker player.