Originally Posted by Gorak
The battle for the sitouts.
Mostly in freerolls, we can sometimes see a series of sitouts. We obviously can take their blinds.
The problem is, some players become greedy and want them all. So they raise every hand when there is a sitout in the BB.
This becomes annoying fast. So I often loosen my range to get part of the action. But they don't like it, so they raise even more. So we end up in a high variance situation early in a tournament.
Depending on the situation I can give up and play my normal range or go for broke with the greedy player.
Optimal play is hard to achieve in those situations.
Playing three handed when 6 others are being given cards and folding is, well, horrible! You cannot play exactly like you would if just 3 handed, nor can you play like you would a full table who folds to 3 players in the pot. It seriously throws some known stats (as in absence of aces per number of players) into the wind; did the sitout fold Ax or could this player (not sitting out) have Ax?
So, you have to play a bit of a hybrid version under these situations. I would not take turns folding, nor would I get greedy.
Nor would I let some loon run over me every hand.
I would play a solid game of poker, certainly opening up my range; you simply treat the greedy guy just like the bully he is;
Call more often
when you have a hand or decent high cards with showdown value (he will often c-bet with nada)
Raise less often
(he will look to bully you off a pot with a re-raise when you do)
Seldom value bet
(same thing again; he will re-raise to get you off a middling hand)
Do not try to out bully him, if at all possible.
That is just a 50-50 proposition. Yet if you allow it, he will run right over you. For me, I will either lose and go home or take them to the felt. But under no circumstances would I ever let some A-hole run me over. It is not going to happen. Free roll or not.
Bully's (greedy players) have no recourse for that counter-strategy (check out Mike Caros website and some other links I have at the end of this). So, either they behave or give you all their chips. But you have to take a stand and let them know they are not going to get away with running you over. Simply waiting for a big hand and shoving to their 17th preflop raise in a row will not do it. They will simply fold.
Sadly, it is something you must learn to deal with. Happily, you will be a better player for it.