Saturday, September 18, 2021

Holdem, Get Some Money Without Losing Yours Part 1

 As you know, Holdem Poker is a very complex game. You need to balance your hands, see what the other players do between preflop and the river, follow betting, and play by position. You need to quickly identify who at the table you can beat and who you want to stay away from. You need to protect your buy-in. All in all, there is a multitude of information in what from a high level looks like a boring game to non players. Slots look a lot more exciting to non players.

Unless you have read several quality books, played a large number of hands, and have a solid base to start from, you have three main frustrations. Bet big and the game turns into a bloodbath. Bet small, and the whole table calls, and you get lost in the hand. Get lost in the hand, and too often you lose your buy-in, and wonder how it happened.

There is a big disconnect between good quality Holdem Books and what is going on in your game. A few Authors claim all your competition is stupid, and they probably are with their playing experience. Other Authors attempt to give you a playbook. Books seem to provide hand play by position, or preferred styles of controlled aggression depending on position.

I am of the opinion, you can give one of your favorite books to a very good player, and they can easily fill in the blanks with detail about what the Author is suggesting. For the average Joe Poker, book advice is whatever Joe perceives it to be. I have found my perception at least is pretty skewed.

Passivity and Aggression have several levels. Holdem Book Authors overall are not really suggesting you change your playing style from Dr. Jekyll to Mr. Hyde and you will be successful. Is the Author really suggesting you bet 1/3 of your stack if you are first to act after the flop, or do they paint a picture of when this may be the correct play?

To make your game worse, each Holdem game is unique and with each change to the game, the best skill set changes. At Low Limits, a big flop raise generally means something different than watching a three bet flop in a higher level game.

My limited Pandemic experience is showing me, beating the higher rake, and double drop is equal to winning half my buy-in before actually adding to my buy-in. Where I play, six dollars leave the table every hand. This means a tight table for the times I have played lately.

Reading a few of my poker books (again) and modifying different playing styles is showing different results. In the following posts, I will go into more detail about what I have found and what works for me right now. In the mean time, if you are reading Holdem books to improve your game, stop every few pages and really think about what the Author is really saying and not what you think you read.

I will put in a disclaimer here. I play Live Low Limit No Limit Holdem. I do not play any higher and do not suggest you take my suggestions to a bigger game as it may not be a good line to follow. Also, as you know, Holdem is a very dynamic game and writing down my thoughts and you reading them, leaves a very wide gap for key ideas to get lost in.

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Holdem, Get Some Money without Losing Yours Part 6

Poker Friends, Poker Foes, Collusion, Lending and Borrowing No matter where you play Poker, there are going to be people who know each other...