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Balance is the Key

Recently I have switched poker sites again, I do this periodically if I find good games and plenty of fish. I don’t play anywhere near as much poker these days and most of that is at between NL50 and NL200 full-ring NLHE. Recently I have been watching the games...

Texas Holdem Poker Table Selection

The key to table selection is having a good seat at a great table. Beware, there is such a thing as a bad seat at a great table. I primarily look at games with 6-8 players and a large pot size. I do this so I’m less likely to join a game that’s already...

Preparation in Poker

In the context of poker, preparation could mean a number of different things, but we’re going to focus specifically on a few instances here. First, we’re going to look at how to and the advantages of preparing when you make a bet or raise. Second,...

Texas Holdem Position

This is a discussion taken out of our very popular poker forum. A beginner was asking about what we mean by position and why it’s important. Some of our more experienced players eloquently described the importance of position in the game of Texas Hold’em. FNORD:...

The Reality of Online Poker

Having spent around twenty years in the gambling industry in one capacity or another and numerous years in online poker, you cannot help but become aware of the seedier side of the industry. But this applies to all fields, it doesn’t matter what it is or how high...

ISF – Pocket Pairs

From now on every Friday I will be taking some of the strategy discussion from the forums, sum up some of the cool content in case you missed it, and make my own comments on the issues discussed. In the high stakes forum this week, there was a hand posted by...

Calling with a Small Pair

Since this has come up a couple times on this board, please correct any errors. I only have the equivalent of a minor in math. There are a lot of factors not included in this simplistic analysis such as straits, quads, flushes, other pair on board and bluffing....

Half-Stack Appraoch to NLHE

General Approach: Buy-in for 50bb. Re-load when you drop below 40bb. At 75bb re-evaluate table conditions. If you don’t like your seat or table, nit it up until your blinds hit, then leave. Tend to leave if you drop 100bb at a table. Advantages to a less than...

Betting to Protect Your Hand in Poker

In this week’s column, we’re going to investigate the idea of betting to protect your hand. A number of people bet with the excuse of protecting their hand almost every chance that they get. On the other hand, a lot of people dismiss this concept as being...

Big Backfiring Bluffs

Bluffing: it’s perhaps the most exciting part of poker. When executed perfectly, the bluff can convince your opponent of anything, and win you their chip stack without a decent hand to in sight. Like the players say, cards only matter when you turn them over....

Building Your Poker Pyramid

If poker was all about exercising knowledge, then it would be basically all too easy to earn money at the game, but life is never that easy is it? For instance many authors have written excellent poker books without the effects of having written that book having any...

Checking to Induce in No-Limit Hold’em

In last week’s column, we looked at the idea of betting to protect your hand. One of the main themes with last week’s column and what we’re going to talk about this week is that a lot of people get into habits of how they think about their range...

Renton Theorem aka ABCD Theorem

In poker, we attempt to make money by playing the best we can, making what we feel is the most profitable play in every scenario, making as few mistakes as possible. Assuming you know the exact hand range of your opponent, there is almost always a clear best play, and...

ISF – Why Being OOP Sucks

The most repeated advice in poker. We’ve all heard it before. Position, Position, Position. The proof is in the pudding. Our statistics show that we win much more money on the button than we do UTG. But the advice to play in position is not very powerful when we have...

A Hand in Action from the Hijack

I was watching a NL100 full-ring game on Pokerloco yesterday when the following hand came down which I thought was somewhat instructive. It was folded around to our hero who raised from the hijack to $3.50. The button called as he had done several times already. Both...

ISF – Strategic Bet Sizing

A lot of people don’t think about their bet sizing much. They have a “standard” bet size they use in nearly all situations, in hopes of not giving away further information as well as not wanting to make a mistake by betting too much or too little. However, some go a...

Intuition: Semi-Bluffing With Non-Nut Outs

Last week we started looking at the relationship between bluffing and semi-bluffing for the purposes of being able to construct examples to study that allow us to build our intuition, or our feel for the game. We specifically looked at scenarios where we only had nut...

ISF – Adjusting

When I interviewed Kingsofcards for my weekly interview, one comment he made about heads up changing his game rung a bell with me. Until after playing HU, when playing 6 max I never really took into account bet sizing, timing tells or things like that nearly as much...

Poker Aggression Guide

Gah, I got this idea in my head and thought I’d write it down. A month ago I essentially explained to my AIM buddies something I was thinking about in a lot of depth, as it was a concept that was integral in killing tight passive games. Pretty much everything I...

Calculating Hand Combinations

List of Topics: 1. Introduction to Hand Combinations 2. How to Calculate Possible Combinations of a Pocket Pair Hand 3. How to Calculate Possible Combinations of a Non-Pocket Pair Hand 4. Brief Discussion of Blockers 5. Effect of Blockers on a Villain’s Range...

ISF – Revision Of ISF Theorem

For the original ISF theorem post go here: ISF Theorem When I wrote ISF Theorem a half year ago, I was at a very frustrating point in my game. I was a very marginal winner at 200nl and was going on two straight losing months, which was absolutely devastating to my...
Exploring Open-Limping Pre-flop

Exploring Open-Limping Pre-flop

Introduction Open limping before the flop in no-limit hold’em cash games is almost always the sign of a loose/passive, weak player. However, this doesn’t have to be the case, and you can definitely add open limping to your game in the right circumstances...

ISF – Forming Ranges: Part 2

In my first strategy post on forming ranges, I mostly touched on preflop. But postflop, as we all know, is where the big money is at. And it’s postflop where forming ranges is the most important, it’s just a whole lot harder! The basic premise of forming ranges is...