If you want to sharpen your poker skills and learn to crush games, visit Jonathan Little’s elite training site at PokerCoaching.com/CardPlayer.
I was recently told about a hand that illustrated a key concept that you must master if you want to succeed in No-Limit Hold’em.
With initial blinds at 50-100 with 20,000 effective stack early in a $500 subscription cycle a loose and nimble call station was raised to 300 and our hero recalled the button at 7 6. The curtains are folded.
This is a perfectly fine, standard call. You should look to connect with a wide range of suitable connectors, suitable aces, and large pairs before the flop when stacked deep, especially against someone who wouldn’t be able to fold any sort of marginal hand made after the flop.
While you would normally lose 300 pieces when you miss, when you lose a perfect hand you will win a lot of money. Triple bets are also a reasonable option, but if you know your opponent likes to concede, it’s usually best to make a good hand before loading money into the pot.
A permutation came 10 9. Initial sponsor checked.
When the initial lifter checks, it is unlikely that he will have a perfect hand because most players (including the call stations) bet their best hand. This will likely “cover” the initial lifter range at the upper pair with a bad shot.
Knowing this, should Hero bet, hoping to make the calling station fold a non-double hand like KQ or a weak pair like 5-5? I do not think so. It is very likely that the calling station will call whichever hand it deems to have the least potential. If you think your opponent is going to call your failing bet with hands like 5-5, you should be prepared to keep betting on the turn and river to make him fold those hands, but this is also not a great idea, due to the possibility that you could easily have a hand like A-2 that will never fold. For any amount of aggression. If the starting pitcher is a regular opponent, then betting on the flop on the draw is perfectly acceptable because many players can be made to forcefully fold their hands like the top pair, and weakly kick next to the river if you apply enough aggressiveness.
Examine the hero from behind. The role was for J. Initial sponsor checked again.
Especially when it’s the Jack’s (or king’s or queen’s) turn, the hero must be content to compromise with fate. It is very likely that the calling station now has some kind of fringe hand that it will not fold into a bet on the turn and the river.
Stick to the plan, surrender is the only game that makes sense when you’re up against a calling station. When you have a hand that has no face value on the river, you should only bet when you expect to make your opponent fold a decent part of their range.
In this spot, the only hands that a calling station folds are non-double hands such as K-3 (which may not be played before the flop) and 5-4 (which is 7-6 beats).
Against more efficient players, betting on the river would probably be ideal, but against a calling station, surrender is the right play, even though it looks incredibly weak.
Examine the hero from behind. The calling station has shifted to K j Reach out and win a small bet.
This time the calling station had a hand that he never planned to cancel for any reasonable bet in any betting round. Once surrendered, Hero only loses three of the big blind, which is a tiny fraction of the 20,000 stack.
While it isn’t as exciting to simply check and give up when you have none, this is usually the best game against someone who rarely pulls into your bets on the boards where all reasonable hands have some face value.
Jonathan Little runs twice WPT Champion with over $7 million in live tournament earnings, Bestselling Author of 15 Poker Tutorial Books, 2019 GPI Poker Person of the Year. If you want to sharpen your poker skills and learn how to crush games, check out his training site at PokerCoaching.com/cardplayer.