by David “The Maven” Chicotsky
For the most part, we all have a preferred bet sizing given almost any situation we are faced with; call it our default bet sizing. For the purposes of simplicity, let’s assume that betting 50% of the pot on the flop is our standard bet sizing in a tournament. We need to come up with reasons to bet more or less than this amount, in order to squeeze the most profit out of every hand we play.
We might bet larger or smaller to try and extract value out of opponents; betting larger against an opponent we know is a calling machine, or smaller if the opponent is someone that leans towards folding in marginal spots. Some players, for example will call pre-flop and purely base their calling or folding based on the quality of their hand on the flop. If they call pre-flop, you already know you are in a long-run positive situation going into the flop. This is why raising limpers or re-raising openers when we’re in position is so favorable.
by Lou Krieger
Unlike many other forms of poker, Texas hold’em is a front-loaded game. You get to see five-sevenths, or seventy-one percent of your hand, on the flop, and that’s a real bargain compared to any other form of poker. The cost to see 70 percent of your hand is only one round of betting. But there’s another side to this too, and the flip side is that there are three remaining betting rounds but only two additional cards that can be used to complete your hand.
Because seven-tenths of your hand is formed by the time you see the flop for the bargain price of only one round of betting, the remainder of the hand becomes quite expensive by comparison.
by George “The Engineer” Epstein
“Life is the art of drawing conclusions from insufficient premises.” —Samuel Butler, British satirist (1835 - 1902)
Butler is best known for his utopian satire, Erewhon, and The Way of All Flesh, a semi-autobiographical novel, published posthumously. What does this saying mean? How does it relate to the game of poker? “Insufficient”—lacking to some extent; too scanty; we would like more information to be really convinced.
by Diane McHaffie
Sympathy and empathy impact poker. If you hope to elicit an empathetic response from your opponent by sharing your sad story, save your breath. The player to whom you’re whining probably knows a better one.
Sometimes, you’ll evoke an insincere sympathetic utterance, because sympathy is easy to express. If you’re just responding politely to make someone else (or yourself) feel better, that’s everyday sympathy. If you really feel another person’s agony, that’s empathy. While some poker opponents feign sympathy, they almost never feel empathy.
by Shari Geller
The 2012 WSOP Main Event is in the books and while we have a new champ, Gregory Merson, it is tempting to put an asterisk by his name and wonder what might have been. Because in poker, as in life, every action has a ripple effect that reverberates far beyond its beginning. One such ripple started with a questionable floor ruling on a hand involving eventual October Niner, Andras Koroknai, and ended when the final table bubble burst last July, establishing who would be part of the final table.
Back on Day 5, ultimate sixth-place finisher, Koroknai, was involved in a controversial hand with later tenth-place finisher, Gaelle Baumann. Baumann had min-raised from under the gun to 60K and it folded around to Koroknai in the small blind. He shoved for his last 1.3 million, and when Gavin Smith in the big blind folded, Koroknai mucked his cards. It was then that he realized that Baumann was still in the hand, and he attempted to retrieve his cards, but only one could be found.
by Ashley Adams
In my last column I wrote about the strategic differences between limit poker and no limit. Here’s the promised follow up article on the typical mistakes that limit players make when they transition to no limit play.
1. Overvaluing AK
2. Not considering stack size
3. Playing too tight pre-flop
4. Calling too frequently on the river
5. Overplaying Top Pair
1. Overvaluing AK: Limit players, especially limit hold’em players, think of AK as one of the premium hold’em hands. They often play it, preflop, as if it were AA or KK – raising aggressively in and out of position. This is surely an error in no limit. While AK should sometimes be raised, for deceptive purposes, it should usually be played for a call, not a raise. No limit gives you the opportunity to fully press your advantage as the hand develops and once it is made – with an appropriately large bet if you hit your hand. Accordingly, in no limit you should usually take advantage of your ability to hold off on your aggression until the flop, saving money on all of those times when AK comes up dry.
Many things about poker are temporary. Not everything. But transition governs the biggest aspects of poker that affect us emotionally. This self-interview is about dealing with transition, with change, and with the word “temporary.”
You see, all poker games are temporary. All streaks, good ones and bad ones, are temporary. Life is temporary. That’s important to understand. It’s important for reasons that beckon beyond philosophical or theoretical. It’s important because your bankroll depends on your grasp of temporary.
Question 1: You just said that not everything in poker is temporary. What could possibly be permanent?
by Barbara Rogers
I thought Hurricane Sandy would close or slow down the casinos in my area. WRONG! Having windows blown out didn’t slow anyone down. Amidst the natural disaster, the poker rooms were still packed all day and night. My sister lives in Quakertown, Pennsylvania, and had no heat or electricity. Naturally, I told her to go play poker. Hard core poker players are great!
Bad Beat $500,000! As of this writing, at the Lodge Casino in Black Hawk, Colorado, Poker Room Manager, Jess Kaufman tells me qualifications are quads or better. Fifteen thousand for the room, with the bad beat $500,000 and growing could mean a very lucrative Holiday Season! I recommend staying in one of the remolded rooms on the 3rd floor, where you can enjoy beautiful views of the mountains.
by Debbie Burkhead
Please Help Support our Nevada Veterans! The Inaugural Operation Homefront Nevada Poker Event is open to the public. The event will provide support to our Nevada Veterans, Wounded Warriors and their families. The Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 10047, located at 4337 N. Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV will run $10 satellites on Saturday, November 10 at 6 pm and Sunday, November 11 at 1 pm. with winners receiving an entry into the main event. Satellites will also be available at 7 pm Wednesday, November 14 at Juke Joint located at 4230 E. Craig Rd. Players may play as many satellites as they like and may distribute winning entries to anyone they wish. The final event will be held on Saturday, November 17 at the VFW. The event will begin at 5 pm with a $100 buy-in. The buy-in for players arriving after 3 pm up until 3:30 pm is $105.00. The format for this event is 1/2 hour of limit hold’em and the remainder of the event will be no-limit hold’em. For more information on the Homefront Nevada Poker event see their ad in this issue of Poker Player Newspaper [Download the PDF].
By Barbara Rogers
When the Sands Casino Resort in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania decides to put on a major tournament, they do it up big. A half million dollar pay-out is guaranteed for the DeepStack Extravaganza Series, running from December 5th to Dec. 17th. Owned by Las Vegas Sands, this casino is located in the Lehigh Valley region of Eastern Pennsylvania. Now, with its new hotel open, you can explore this interesting structure, and see how the original Bethlehem Steel was converted into a beautiful full scale casino.