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Telling lies at the table

In 2015 I played two very low buy-in events at the WSOP. Although I’d probably played half a million hands online prior to that, it was my first ever experience of live play. I busted out of both events and there is only one hand that I remember. There is one very specific reason why I remember it and it has nothing to do with the hand itself being of any great interest.

I was recently told about a hand from the final table of a live $300 buy-in tournament that illustrates a few key mistakes that many players make when playing short stacked. With blinds at 5,000/10,000 with a 10,000 big blind ante, everyone folded to the small blind who started with 150,000. He was the shortest stack at the final table, but there were a few other players with between 17 and 25 big blinds. The blind was a loose, aggressive player with 50 big blinds.

How to Rewire Your Poker Brain

You raise from the button with QJo. Your opponent calls you from the big blind. You both are 50 BBs deep.

The board comes 9-6-2 rainbow. Your opponent checks to you. There’s 6 big blinds in the middle.

What do you do?

I was recently told about an interesting situation from a $2/$5 game that you should strive to avoid. A somewhat loose, weak player with $200 limped from middle position and our Hero found Q7 in the cutoff with a $500 stack. Hero decided to raise to $25.

I was recently told about an interesting hand from a $1/$2 no-limit cash game that illustrates a few key points that you should always consider while at the table

I was recently reviewing the hands of one of my new students who plays primarily $1/$3 no-limit cash games in live, local casinos. Today I will share with you a mistake he made that many amateur poker players make on a regular basis.

Exploitative Play vs GTO

Passive Exploitation

Does GTO play make money vs bad players?

In a HU situation, if one player is playing optimally vs a suboptimal opponent, any deviation the weaker player makes away from GTO to a worse strategy can only cost him value, which will in turn be gained by the optimal player. This phenomenon is called passive exploitation because the optimal player does not have to do anything besides play his equilibrium strategy to gain extra Ev from the suboptimal player.


Bet Sizing, Part 2

In my last article, we talked about bet sizing, and how you want to skew your bets either larger or smaller, based on your opponent’s inelastic calling or folding ranges.

I gave the example of an opponent who would be indifferent to any c-bet size between $10 and $20 (would always call if he hit the flop, always fold otherwise). In this case, want to c-bet closer to $20 with strong hands, and closer to $10 with weak hands. In the long run, this will earn us more money with our value hands, and save us money with our bluffs.

I was recently told about an interesting scenario that causes headaches for many amateur poker players. In a micro-stakes $.05/$.10 cash game, the player in the hijack seat raised to $.30 out of his $10 effective stack and our Hero 3-bet from the button to $.90 with K-K.

I was recently told about a hand that illustrates a common bet sizing mistake that many amateur poker players make on a regular basis. In a $2/$5 nine-handed cash game with $575 effective stacks, first position, third position, lojack, hijack, and small blind all limped. Hero checked J8 from the big blind.

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