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I was recently told about a hand from a $1/$2 no-limit cash game that illustrates two errors that many amateur players make on a regular basis. A generally tight player raised to $5 out of his $200 stack from first position at a 7-handed table. Another reasonable player called from the hijack seat (two to the right of the button). Hero called with 99 from the small blind.



In today’s article, we are going to discuss three areas where I feel weak live players are easily exploited. This article will hopefully give you three areas in your game to explore for leaks, as well as exploiting leaks in your opponents.


Strategy
D&B MAGAZINE

I was recently reviewing my hands from a recent tournament series and I spotted a hand illustrates an important concept that you must master if you want to win as much money possible from poker tournaments. This hand took place on the bubble of a $1,000 buy-in 6-handed event. My table was somewhat deep stacked, but the rest of the field was quite shallow, with the average stack being about 25 big blinds.



Let’s put you in a situation:

You have AJ. You’re in a $530 tournament at your local Midwest casino. You’re in the big blind. You have 70 big blinds effective.

A young grinder raises from UTG+3 to 2.5X the big blind. It’s folded around to you.

He’s in his mid-20s. He’s a nice enough guy. He seems to do well in $1/$3. He’s been playing cards more lately, but he hasn’t moved up to $2/$5.


Hand Analysis
D&B MAGAZINE
Strategy
D&B MAGAZINE

While most of your profit in soft or small buy-in tournaments will come from getting full value from your strong hands, occasionally you will need to run a well-timed bluff. I played a hand in the recent $1,000 buy-in WPT side event at Borgata that illustrates this point.


Strategy
D&B MAGAZINE

This is the third part of my series on bluffing. In parts 1 and 2, we learned:

  1. Our bet size (relative to the pot size) determines how often we should be bluffing on the river.
  2. We bluff much more often on the flop, because those bluffs are mostly semi-bluffs that have equity, as opposed to pure river bluffs that have no chance of winning unless our opponent folds.
  3. On the river, we want to bluff with the absolute worst hands in our range, unless a stronger hand would block more of our opponent’s strong hands.

In this final article I want to give three practical tips to apply all of this.



The following hand took place early in Day 1 of the $3,500 buy-in Borgata Poker Open WPT main event. I was pleased to find myself at a table that should have been quite good for me because my opponents were clearly playing in a blatantly straightforward manner. Despite this, I found myself down to 24,000 from my initial 30,000 chip stack, mostly due to making a strong, but second best hands a few times in a row.


Strategy
D&B MAGAZINE

Moving up in stakes for a tournament or cash game player is often one of the most difficult things for a poker player. At higher stakes, you are faced with new, unfamiliar, opponents who are more skilled than the players at your previous stake. These two factors, unfamiliarity and skill, lead to a very challenging barrier to entry when moving up in stakes. Let’s discuss some tips that can help you move up in stakes successfully.

For this article we are going to use the example of Mike, who asked me about moving up from 2/5nl to 5/10nl.



The following hand took place in a $1,000 buy-in World Poker Tour side event. The tournament just started and everyone had about 4,500 chips with 25/25 blinds. I raised to 75 from the cutoff seat with KJ and only the small blind, a 50-year-old recreational local player, called.


Strategy
D&B MAGAZINE
Mindset
D&B MAGAZINE

In part 1 of this series, I did a crash course in bluffing theory, as it relates to how often we should bluff. In this article, I’ll be talking about hand selection.


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