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Playing Draws, Part 5

In the previous article we began to talk about playing draws in position. We decided that we would rather just call with draws when we’re in position, rather than raise with them. By doing so, we keep the stacks as deep as possible, and that allows us more creative tactics on the turn and river.

The only other thing I’ll say about playing draws in position is, always consider your opponent before deciding to bet or raise as a semi-bluff. Your opponent’s personality type should weigh heavily on that decision.

For example …


Strategy
D&B MAGAZINE

Before I start into the fourth part of my six-part series on playing draws, let’s recap what we’ve learned so far. In the first three segments we talked about playing draws out of position, and found out that:

  1. Some draws are meant to be played aggressively (e.g., check-raise with them). Some draws are meant to be played passively (e.g., check-call with them). It is not correct to randomly choose one of these approaches!
  2. When playing a draw aggressively, we want to choose the line (and bet sizing) that will maximize our fold equity.
  3. If we plan to check-raise with a draw, and our opponent is a good player, we need to be careful to make sure we have enough legitimate value check-raising hands in our range as well. Otherwise, our opponent will sniff out our semi-bluff and punish us.

Strategy
D&B MAGAZINE
Mindset
D&B MAGAZINE

Learning when to turn a made hand into a bluff is one of the most beneficial lessons for mid-stakes players. It takes study, practice and experience, but with a few key tricks you will be able to better navigate river decisions and understand when to turn your hand into a bluff.



The Poker Learning Dilemma

As a coach, teacher, and podcast creator, I am in an interesting position. I get to work with and answer questions from some of the most talented and motivated established and up and coming poker players from around the globe, and yet, I also get to see how many struggle with developing their poker expertise, reducing bad habits and consistently playing in the zone. After some amount of thought about why it is so difficult to succeed at poker, I have come up with some possible hypotheses that I think can help you guide you towards improvement.



When Should You Become a Professional Poker Player?

One of the most-asked questions I get during my morning show A Little Coffee (Mon – Fri at 9am ET) is “When should I become a professional poker player?” To hopefully avoid re-answering the same again in the future, here are my thoughts on the subject.



Poker in the Movies

Later this year we will be publishing Poker & Pop Culture: Telling the Story of America’s Favorite Card Game, by Martin Harris. Here is a short extract:

“Poker in the Movies”

The representation of poker in films likely has had more to do with forming opinions about the game than has any other variety of American popular culture. One could argue that when it comes to shaping ideas about poker, John Wayne, W.C. Fields, and Paul Newman have exerted more influence than anyone who has played the game.



Five concepts to keep in mind in 2019

Happy New Year! I hope you strive to make 2019 your best year yet! In this article, I am going to share with you five concepts you must keep in mind if you want to succeed at poker. While there are numerous concepts that must be mastered if you want to win as much as possible, you simply must master these concepts to have eve a reasonable chance of winning.



Many poker players are overly timid before the flop, yet when they finally put money in the pot, they feel like they must win it. This usually leads to the player vastly overplaying marginal hands whereas in reality, they should be trying to control the size of the pot.



Suits You Sir!

We have been producing poker books at D&B for around 15 years. I have organised, laid out and typeset all of these poker books. I have also edited and proofread a lot of them.

In that time there is one thing I have noticed that consistently happens when authors generate hands to illustrate points under discussion…


Strategy
D&B MAGAZINE

In my previous article, we took a look at which draws should be played passively, and which should be played a little more aggressively. Specifically, we decided that we want to play more passively with draws that have inherent showdown potential (even when they miss). In contrast, we’ll play more aggressively with draws that have no showdown value at the moment.


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