Here are some observations from playing Sit n Goís and MTT's, and tips of my own
Here are some observations from playing sit n goís and mtt, along with some tips of my own.
Well some people donít care and still play at the any 2 cards can win mentality.
Donít know why they do, need I care? Not really cause in the long run that mentality will lose much, much more. These are also the same people who never think about Position.
For instance I will take a marginal hand the Ace, 10Decent hand, not great, not bad but O.K hand, becomes a little better when suited but still O.K íve seen people raise Under the Gun and you are 1st to act with a whole bunch of others behind you. If you want to raise with this hand do it in the late positions. I personally hate the hand cause it doesnít have a lot of potential, well for me it doesnít. But back to what I was saying, ok you raise UTG and lets say you get 3 callers. Flop shows KH, JH,8D and you have AS 10C.
Assuming you play your hand out to the end, it will consist of seven cards. After the flop you have seen five cards or 5/7 of the final hand, which is equal to 71 percent.
Yet now you need 4 cards to make that hand 100%. Odds are that you probably wonít make that hand. You have a 16% to get that card on the turn and then 8% to get it on the river. So now again if the blinds have folded to your raise, you again act 1st.
Reason being you canít act 1st looking for that low % to win; you are now looking to see if you can get that card as cheaply as you can. Now being that if you were in late position with your pre-flop raise, people will more than likely check to you, Giving you a chance at a free card instead of you having to bet because you represented strength or check in hopes of every one else checking. Now with a bet you have to scare off anybody else holding a K or a J. Now this brings me back to those who play any 2 cards. Someone in late position called your raise with K,8 cause he loves suited cards.
How about if someone called with K,Q? Now you are in trouble here and wasted chips; because you also have the mentality that any 2 cards can win. Yet I have seen those who over bet on the flop to win the hand right then because they made the initial pre-flop raise. Thatís exactly what the over bet is, to scare those others into folding. Yes, occcasionaly an over bet pre-flop raises or post flop means a great hand. Normally from what I have seen it just means you are scaring the best hands into folding. Iíll call just to see what they do on the turn if I have a hand such as the K, Q giving me top 2 pair and/or if I want to take it down Iíll re-raise. Then this person will go all in hoping for the low % hand to win, basically giving him a 1:9 chance he will hit his gut shot straight.
ďSee how hand selection along with position go hand in hand?Ē
Now all this brings me to the wonderful AX players. Yes, Aceís are nice card donít get me wrong, Yet Aces also arenít the cats meow. Some people donít know that an ace only falls on the flop 30% of the time. Basically meaning that out of 10 times you will only see an Ace on the flop 3 times. Then most of the time your kicker is out beat especially the mid to low kickers. If you want, yes, your choice limp in with an Ace X mid to low kicker, but donít get married to it. Now the Paint cards, (face cards) with an ace, give you a strong kicker. Still be careful cause again, there are people who still play any 2 cards can win. Those are the ones who limp with the mid to small kicker and hit 2 pair on the flop cause of that low kicker. Meaning your Ace that paired is against his Ace that paired along with his kicker that has paired. Your kicker now has only 3 cards left unseen to come, not very good odds by any means. Play them yes but also play with caution with limpers who come in or those who call your raises with any 2 cards. Now the AX suited hand. Nice cause it will give you the nut flush. Yet I have seen others chase that back door flush, brings me to the 71% of your hand made. If it isnít made around 71% then why bother wasting chips on a low % hand? Just fold it and take the minimal lose, always more hands that come later that will give you a higher % chance to win. So by all means again, yes Ace is a nice card but always take caution cause it isnít the cats meow.
Since now we are talking about suited cards, letís change the Ace suite to the wonderful low suited connectors. Really what are they good for? Yes, ok you can get a straight but how many times has that held out compared to someone having a higher straight then yours? Yes, ok you can also get a flush but how many times has that also held out compared to someone having the higher flush (need I mention the nut flush?).
They do win but the losses with these hands will always offset the wins with these such hands. Donít get into much habit with them of playing em.
Now the low pocket to medium pocket pairs. I love watching those who call pre-flop raises with pockets ranging from 22ís all the way to the 99ís. Reason cause they only think someone has only A, K or A, Q. Do they honestly think that those are the only 2 hands that can be done with a pre-flop raise? The set (3 of a kind while holding pockets) only happens 1:8, not a very high percentage. So when a pre-flop raise comes, simple fold the lower pockets anyway, Iíd say from 22ís-66ís. Yet 77ís and 88ís should also be folded about 80-90% of the time on a raise. Yes I know you have pockets but these arenít the cats meow either.
Now lets say you limped and you hit your set on the flop, great you have what I call a hidden 3 of a kind. Bet it like mad but read the board to make sure no straight or flush draws is showing, yes bet but take caution. You only have 28% to make a full house or 4 of a kind. Meaning that you have 7 outs to come on the turn. Giving you 1 out for your 4 of a kind, 3 cards a piece for the 2 on the board. Example: You hold say 33ís and the flop comes J, 9,3. So you have only 1 3 left to come, 3 Jacks to come and 3 9ís to come.
Now if you miss that on the turn. The turn card also gives you 3 more outs to make the full house or 4 of a kind. Giving you a total of 10 outs and then your % to hit that on the river is 20%. So yes, pockets are nice especially when they do hit the set.
Now the Blinds, I have talked about the Small blind before. Yet lets bring it back into the picture along with the BB. You are allowed to let them go, so someone is stealing them early on in the game. They are so small early on that you really wonít recognize much difference in your chip stack cause someone took 10,20,30 chips from your blinds.
Many players feel they must defend their blinds by calling all raises even with marginal hands. Donít waste additional money on marginal hands. So you donít have to defend your blind just because you ďthinkĒ they are stealing. Always plenty of other hands and positions for you to get back those chips you lost in your blind(s). Many players feel they must defend their blinds by calling all raises even with marginal hands. Also, donít automatically call with the small blind if you have nothing. Saving a half bet will pay for your next small blind. Be surprised if you did this say 6 times straight by saving half a bet. That is 3 BBís and more chips you have to fight with when you get a premium hand or I prefer that premium flop. The blind are and never was the best place to fight from while trying to gain chips. Again Position, Position and Position is a key to success.
Another key, which people fail to use, is Patience, Patience, and Patience. Yes, gain this 1st over position. Yes, I know, it gets boring folding time and time and time again. Donít think you can learn patience. Here is a way to learn it, simple easy and doesnít cost you much. Find the lowest micro limit table you can play on in a poker site. Most are pennies so you only need Iíd say a dollar to start with. Now I donít know what everyone calls a top 10 pre-flop hand but my recommendations is to fold every hand but these 10 while at the micro limit table. Play AAís, KKís, A.K, QQís , JJís, 10ís, 99ís, 88ís, 77ís and A.Q.
So go ahead make a pre-flop raise with those certain hands. Yes, you will get callers at the low micro limits. That is the nature of the beast cause remember they are thinking any 2 cards can win mentality and you arenít. After the flop you go from there depending on the flop. Remember the 71% of your hand here (cause more then likely the others at the table are aiming for this). Once you get this down pretty good, then you can work on other aspects of your game.
Such as reading the board and the player. The board is readable because you are looking to see if there are any flush possibilities, and any straight possibilities. Those are easier to look for, I think anyway. Especially the flush, it is easiest to see on the board. It can be 2-3 suited cards of the same suit that comes on the flop. 2 cards that come on the flop and there are a few in the hand, more than likely they are going after the flush. Yet 3 cards hit you are almost guaranteed that the flush is out there. Yet, I have seen where 4 people were in the hand and nobody has had the flush. Everyone just checked, checked, checked around. Right up to the river and basically came down to highest pair won. The straight is a tad harder to see at times. However if you play long enough, you will start seeing them much easier as time goes along.
Now you ask what you mean about reading players? No we arenít looking for facial or body expressions. Pay attention to what cards they like to play. Does a particular player like suited cards? Does he like the Ace and will play it with any kicker? How about someone who plays KX suited cause he figures that if AX suited is good why isnít KX suited just as good. Does he limp in with a lot of hands?
Is he tight that he only plays premium hands and folds everything else? Even use the online ďtellsĒ cause some people forget they are out there. The Auto button is being used? They are the ones who have the button that says check, raise, fold button already chosen before they are to act. A quick check with the auto button shows weakness but however a seasoned player may use this to their advantage and check quickly while holding strength in their hand. Now does a player check the flop and then bet the turn every time? Always take notes on these playersí cause #1 it is nice to remember what they do and #2 you never know when you are going to play them again.
Now the river, I read an article that states, ďWhen you get to the river there are two mistakes that you can make. One is to call a losing bet, which will cost you the price of a bet. The other is to fold your hand, which will cost you all the money in the pot. Obviously folding your hand will be a far more costly mistake then merely calling a bet. If there is a slight chance you may have the winning hand you should call. Iím not advocating calling with nothing but you should call if there is a chance to win.Ē Now I agree because some players will only value bet the river, so I say call a value bet when you have a chance to win.Ē
More observations that I have brought up before. Why call a pre-flop raise with a hand youíve already limped in with if you havenít made the pre-flop raise. Early in the game you arenít pot committed. Itís a very small investment of chips you have made so losing that small investment isnít going to change your chip stack really at all. Yet time and time again I keep seeing players whom limp in call a pre-flop raise or those in the blinds call pre-flop raises (mentioned earlier with marginal hands). If you know you are going to call a pre-flop raise, then go ahead and make the pre-flop raise yourself. If you are calling a pre-flop raise from early to mid position, you still act before the initial person who made the pre-flop raise (brings me again to position). The chips you limp in with are no longer yours once they are committed to the pot. It is much easier to take small investment heartache then larger investment heartache.
Now lets bring up the Bubble it is the place if you finish in either a Multi Table Tournament or Sit & Go where you win some cash. In all seriousness finishing barely on the bubble, is it really going to change your life if you win your sit in fee with some spare pennies? Not really, so stop worrying about making the bubble, Go for it and try to make more for your initial investment. Your life will still be the same if you make the bubble or you donít.
Last but not least, read some books on hold-em. Even 1 of the basics will help you as well along to becoming a better hold-em player. Play the game cause experience will also help you become a better hold-em player. Join a forum cause you can always learn from others and become again a better hold-em player. Then finally enjoy the game because to take this game 100% seriously is just going to give you a headache. I hope that a few of the tips will help you improve your game if you already play or get you started on the right track if you are just starting out. Learning to play winning Texas Holdíem requires reading, studying, playing and enjoyment.