Smaller Bet Stragedy

t1riel

t1riel

Legend
I recently read an article by Daniel Negreanu about how a smaller bet gives you more bang for your buck. Betting half the pot will actually give you the same amount of information as betting the whole pot. It's a stragedy many professionals use and understand but many average players haven't.

For example, In No Limit Hold'em you raised pre-flop with A-10. Only the big blind calls you.

The flop comes Kc-8s-4d. The big blind checks to you. You bet thinking your opponent missed the Flop and will fold but how much should you bet?

If you bet the pot, you'll find out where your opponent stands. If he calls, chances are he has a better hand than you. However, would the outcome be any different had you bet half the pot? Chances are it would be the same result. However, the smaller bet is often a much better choice. Why?

You'll be risking fewer chips when you get caught bluffing. If you are attempting to steal the pot, a smaller bet but a decent amount should give you sufficient information. Also, You want your opponents to play with weaker hands when you have a good hand. Chances are they will call a bet of half the pot rather than a pot bet.

Antoher thing you should realize is math is on your side. "If there is 600 in a pot and you bet 600, you'll be getting even money on your proposition. That means, in the long run, you'd have to win that pot half of the time to make it a profitable play...When you consider that the hand will play out almost identically with a 400 bet, you'll see that, mathematically, it often makes sense to choose the smaller bet."

Let's say you bet 400 to win 600, you getting 3-2 odds rather than even-money but a smaller bet will achieve the same result as a bigger bet but would only have to pay off 40 percent of the time rather than 50 percent of the time had you bet the whole pot.

Many profesional poker players keep the pots smaller so they'll have more control over the outcome. Amateurs will often make over-sized bets, usually out of fear becuase they worry that a superior player will be able to outplay them unless they make a big bet.

The article concludes that is you want to take your game to the professional level, you should use this smaller bet stragedy to your style of play.
 
F Paulsson

F Paulsson

euro love
An addition to this:

A lot of players don't pay any attention whatsoever, but some do. For those that do, it's important that you don't always bet the pot when you have something, and bet half the pot when you missed. As soon as someone catches on, you're in trouble. Try to be consistent. If you're heads-up on the flop, half the pot is good.

Personally, I adjust the bet depending a bit on how many players are still in. If I'm first to act in a multiway pot with missed overcards, the texture of the flop and my knowledge of the players who are in with me will dictate what I do.
 
spore

spore

Rock Star
Ok, first of all I wanna know what "stragedy" is, lol.. just givin ya a hard time.

Now, on to the strategy at hand here. I'm a big fan of under-bets. When you're not sure where you're at in the hand.. you can find out a lot cheaper this way. You can also trap opponents with a small bet. Say you have 77 and the board is AJ7. A small-ish bet here may induce a raise by an Ax hand.. where you can re-raise.

A small-ish bet can also be used as a bluff.. especially against stronger players. A small bet may tell a stronger player that you are looking for a call or raise.. and they may back off a medium-strength hand.

Finally, a situation when a small bet is NOT a good idea. When there are flush/straight draws on board. You hit TPTK with a flush draw on board, you'll want to make a pot-sized or better bet to keep your opponents from trying to draw out on you.
 
ChuckTs

ChuckTs

Legend
There's one problem i've found with this "stragedy" ;)
I like to preflop raise the same amount every time, and i also like to continuation bet around the same amount (half the pot, but before i tried this articles strategy, it was 2/3 or 3/4 the pot)
BUT - what if there's a really dangerous board and you need to make an bet that will give your opponent bad odds?
Say you hold TT and raise PF, you get 1 caller and the flop comes: TJQ

you've hit a great hand, and you should make a solid continuation bet that will either make your opponent fold, or chase his straight against the odds.
What if you've been making 1/2 pot bets the whole session and youre opponent knows it?
If he's a solid player, he might fold his KJ or KQ type hand knowing he's behind, but with your 1/2 pot bets, he might chase it or even raise knowing that you do this 1/2 pot bet every time you make a PF raise.
The point i'm trying to get across is that at one point or another, you're going to have to switch your bets up and it will give away info, which might result in smaller profit on a hand.
 
titans4ever

titans4ever

Legend
t1riel said:
Why?

You'll be risking fewer chips when you get caught bluffing. If you are attempting to steal the pot, a smaller bet but a decent amount should give you sufficient information. Also, You want your opponents to play with weaker hands when you have a good hand. Chances are they will call a bet of half the pot rather than a pot bet.

Antoher thing you should realize is math is on your side. "If there is 600 in a pot and you bet 600, you'll be getting even money on your proposition. That means, in the long run, you'd have to win that pot half of the time to make it a profitable play...When you consider that the hand will play out almost identically with a 400 bet, you'll see that, mathematically, it often makes sense to choose the smaller bet."

Let's say you bet 400 to win 600, you getting 3-2 odds rather than even-money but a smaller bet will achieve the same result as a bigger bet but would only have to pay off 40 percent of the time rather than 50 percent of the time had you bet the whole pot.

Many profesional poker players keep the pots smaller so they'll have more control over the outcome. Amateurs will often make over-sized bets, usually out of fear becuase they worry that a superior player will be able to outplay them unless they make a big bet.

You do need to mix it up and it is all according to the flop. There are times when an over the pot size bet is the best move. The point is that smaller bets will alot of times get the same results with less chips risked. I think it is part of bankroll management that people don't realize.

Continuation bets are good and needed move in NL. Rep strength preflop and you must continue it after. If a person is going to fold after the flop the size of the bet does not matter but if they are going to call or reraise it sure does. Most people know before it is their turn how they are going to respond. How many times do you bet and it is folded in a blink because they are going to wilt to any bet and have already clicked on the check/fold button. You could have bet the minimum and got the same result.

The part that is not explained is that you will win alittle less money each hand because you are not betting as much but you will get that money back with the occasional extra caller because they think it is worth a chance to see one more card (we all do it) because the bet is alittle more reasonable. That makes the money won more of a push. No more money won but alittle less lost. That makes it a winning situation.

The best way to understand the odds are if you bet 600 to win 600 you must win 1/2 the time. If you bet 400 to win the 600 you will need to win less times.

Example: I will challange you to a coin toss 100 times. Heads you pay me $5, tails I pay you $5. 50/50 right! Next I give you a standard 6 sided dice and say 1-4 I pay you $5, 5-6 you pay me $5. Which is the better deal in the long run.
 
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