Archive for the ‘Tadas “Poker Coach” Peckaitis’ Category

Tadas PeckaitisTadas “My Poker Coaching” Peckaitis

This is the last of the three articles in my mini-series about exploitative play, and today I want to touch on river bluffs. Surely, it is one of the most powerful weapons, which you could put in your arsenal and I highly recommend taking advantage of that.

You can put even more pressure on your opponents if you are playing tournaments because of ICM poker strategy concepts (Independent Chip Model), but in cash games alike, it works like a charm.

Betting on the last street

While c-betting on the flop and following with your bluffs on the turn is very standard play, people are still struggling to run 3 barrel bluffs and bet the river. Honestly, it is a mistake, and a lot of the time, you would do much better firing that bet, especially if you have some blockers to go along.

While writing this article, I loaded my HM2 to check c-bet success stats, and it was no surprise that river bet success was the highest one, even going over 52%. It means when I barrel all three streets my opponents are folding 52% of the time on the river, and that is huge. What does that tell you? Well, firstly, that you should be betting unbelievably wide as a bluff on the river.

If you are betting full pot size bet, you only need to see 50% folds to make a profit. However, we are not using this sizing all the time. Thus, if you choose to bet just ½ pot size on the river, you only need 33% folds from your opponent, and if you are getting 52% like me, you are just literally printing money.

On top of that, raising river as a bluff can give you even better results. Most of your opponents will not even consider their options when facing a raise and will fold everything apart from the nut type holdings. When pulling the trigger in this spot, always take in consideration the blockers. You want to have a hand, which blocks your opponents most likely strong holdings and do not block possible bluffs.

If you take this information into consideration when making decisions, you will find yourself running successful bluffs much more often that you can imagine.

Texas Poker Store - Nighthawk Poker tableSumming it up

Therefore, you have an excellent risk-reward ratio so do not be afraid to run that big bluff next time you find yourself at the poker tables, and you will see the results.

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Tadas PeckaitisTadas “My Poker Coaching” Peckaitis

Building on top of the last article, I want to mention another extremely profitable way to increase your win rate that many players miss – delayed c-betting. It’s a strategy  that although it’s not covered as well as Texas Holdem hand rankings, bankroll management or math concepts, but it can give you a significant edge over your opponents because most poker players are not using it as they should.

Getting the most out of a delayed c-bet

First, let’s say you are in position and after checking back on the flop, you see another check from your opponent. You can safely say that when your opponent checks twice, he is not looking to play a big pot or risk a significant part of his stack calling you down. Most of the time their range is full of weak bluff catchers or show down value hands; they just want to see a free showdown and are ready to give up when facing any significant betting.

Therefore, this is a perfect spot to bet or even turn your weak hand into a bluff and put the pressure back on your opponent. It looks obvious, but many players go into check back mode without even thinking. Moreover, you will lose more often than you think with weak show-down value hands because a lot of the time your opponent will be bluffing air hands himself, but may still have a better hand than yours. Thus, when he checks a few times in a row, he is extremely likely to have a weak hand himself and you can get him to muck his hand.

Let us take an example to illustrate this. You are playing 6 max cash game with 100 big blinds and get A3s in the CO, it is folded around to you, you raise, and big blind calls. Flop comes J76, you both check and see meaningless 2x. Your opponent decides to check again, and you consider your options.

Many players just automatically check back thinking they could win a showdown, but that’s a mistake. First, you are losing to every single hand that has showdown value, such as better Ax, 7x, 6x and few low pocket pairs. However, if you decide to bet the turn and river, you will almost surely make him fold the vast majority of those holdings and you’ll take down the pot. You need to take into consideration that your opponent is not likely to have many strong hands because Jx or better would likely get him some value and he’d be betting on the turn.  Therefore, you can easily manipulate your opponent’s play by putting on the pressure at the right time.

Same could be said when you are out of position as well. Obviously, you will get fewer folds on the turn because players tend to float a lot while being in position, but if you continue your aggression on the river, you will make him fold most of his holdings.

Summing it up

Poker Tables from the Texas Poker StoreWhen you find yourself in a similar spot at the poker tables, don’t be afraid to pull the trigger and you will surely get more folds than you can imagine. Most players are just not capable of defending as much as they should in this area, so take advantage of that!

Send me your thoughts, comments or questions!

Tadas PeckaitisTadas “My Poker Coaching” Peckaitis

Poker is becoming highly competitive, and to stay ahead of your competition, you need to keep improving all the time. Just ask all-time great, Daniel Negreanu, who says he continues to work hard to keep up with the young poker studs. Obviously, you can find a lot of information on how to balance your ranges and you can learn game theory optimal (GTO) strategies to compete with tough players. However, there’s very little talk about how you can exploit your opponents to maximize results.

Do not get me wrong, understanding and learning GTO strategy is essential if you want to play in higher-stake games and grow as a player. But if your end goal is to make more money, you can surely find some spots for that.

Betting versus missed c-bet
Today, I want to talk about one of the most powerful moves you can add to your arsenal – betting versus missed continuation bet. It is probably the most underused play that can change your results dramatically. When your opponent decides not to c-bet after raising pre-flop, you have a great opportunity to steal the pot and, with very few exceptions, should do that almost all the time.The joy of winning after C-Betting

It does not matter if you are in or out of position, playing 3bet or single raised pot. In all of these cases, you can put a lot of pressure on your opponents if your first instinct is to bluff, unless you get a very unfavorable run out.

Most of the time this happens when you defend from the BB versus late position open and then you both check on the flop.?  If your opponent decided to check, he either has a weak hand, total air or he’s trapping, which is going to happen very rarely. Therefore, on most run outs you should fire a bet on the turn and continue barreling on the river as well. The only dangerous scenarios are when the board pairs or an Ace hits on the turn, because many players tend to check back A-high hands. Moreover, when the board pairs, you will get fewer folds because players are more likely to bluff catch with low pairs or even A-high hands so you can let it go.

Apart from that, you should feel free to fire a bet. If you choose to bet 2/3 of the pot, you only need to make him fold 40% of his range to make an instant profit, and that is usually the case. People just don’t have that many strong holdings in their checking range, so you can and should take advantage of that. Even if your opponent decides to call on the turn, he will end up folding most of his hands on the river. Thus, this is one of the spots where applying aggression is going to pay you huge dividends in the future.

Summing it up
As you see, it is not enough to learn Texas Holdem poker rules to make the most profitable decisions and sometimes you just have to think outside the box. Do not try to balance your ranges blindly and if you recognize mistakes in your opponent’s play – take advantage of that.Poker tables from the Texas Poker Store

In the next few upcoming articles, I will show you other profitable spots to exploit your competition at the poker tables, so stay tuned for more!

Send me your thoughts, comments or questions!

Tadas PeckaitisTadas “My Poker Coaching” Peckaitis

In my last blog I wrote about the fact that most poker players stick to games they know, like Texas Hold’em, or maybe Omaha or 7 Card Stud. However, there are so many other formats that can bring another level of excitement to your game. So, if you are bored playing the same games or just want to try something new, I highly recommend learning 2-7 Triple Draw Low ball Poker.

Even if you won’t play this game very often, learn the rules and try it out. I really think you’ll enjoy it.

2-7 Triple Draw Low Ball Rules

The game starts when players post the blinds, and everyone gets their five cards. Just like in any popular 5-Card Draw variant, your holdings are only visible to you. Moreover, there are no community cards, so you are just playing your own hand.

Before jumping into game play, I want to emphasize that the goal of this game is to make the worst possible combination! Therefore, if you end the hand having a flush, straight, trips or even just a pair, your holding is extremely weak, and you are unlikely to win. Another rule that is exceptional for this game is that an Ace only counts as a high card. So while in other games such as Razz, A 2 3 4 7 would be a great combination, in 2-7 Triple Draw Low ball it is a weak hand just because of this exception. For this game, the best possible combination is 2 3 4 5 7, and your goal is to get as close to it as possible.

Going back to the game play, as you probably understand from the name, you have a chance to draw new cards. Actually, there are three drawing rounds in total after each betting round, so you have many ways to improve your hand. In each round, you can draw as many cards as you like or stay with your original hand and keep all of your cards. After all drawing and betting rounds end, a showdown follows and the player holding the lowest combination wins.

All you have to do is follow these simple rules to try this game. It is definitely more fun than it sounds from the description and you are doomed to have a good time.

Conclusion

Playing this and other less well-known formats can bring new challenges, as well as a lot of fun, to your games. It is extremely helpful if you choose an online poker site which offers many different games in one place so you can enjoy the action.

Try new games, learn new things and you will start enjoying yourself at the poker tables like never before!

Send me your thoughts or comments!