What To Do When You're Small Blind... tip from Rory Monahan

NewSetUp

NewSetUp

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Apr 14, 2005
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I like to push the action and make things
happen. However, there is a position at
the table that I am very hesitant to play
aggressively.

And that position is small blind, which is
just to the left of the dealer.

This position is very tough to play because
you are first to act after the flop.

I've found that playing aggressively from
this position will only lead to trouble.

Here's how.

Let's say you're dealt a Q9 of diamonds
and four of your opponents limp in to see
the flop.

You like your hand and already have half
of your ante in the pot, so you also decide
to also limp in.

The flop hits Q,3,7 with no diamonds on
the board. Now you are first to act with
the top pair on board.

Should you throw out a bet?

I wouldn't!

It can only lead to trouble because of
your positioning. There are four other
players that can act after you.

They could be holding a number of hands
that beat yours. If you throw out a bet
and Drew is sitting on JQ, you are in big
trouble.

Why throw out a bet here?

It doesn't make sense.

Check and see what your opponents do.
If everyone checks, then you may want
to make a bet after the turn card.

However, betting after the flop will only
get you in trouble if there are numerous
callers in the hand. Don't do it!

Now let's say your holding that same Q9
and the flop hits Q,9,3.

You've just flopped 2 pair.

Once again, your first to act.

Do you play this flop aggressively by
making a bet?

No again!

It wouldn't make sense to. Here is how
I would play this hand:

Check the flop and let one of the other
aggressive players make a stab at the pot.

After Drew thows out a $20 bet, I'd simply
call. The turn hits and its a 4, which I
know didn't help Drew's hand.

I check again as though my hand is weaker
than it actually is. Drew's not falling
for it. He checks right behind me.

The river is another 4 and once again,
I'm first to act. Now I can't check.

If I check here I take the chance that
Drew may not bet again, which means I make
no more money on the hand.

Instead, I throw out a $20 bet. I know
Drew has to call this with even a very
weak hand. He's pot committed and will
pay the $20 to simply see my cards.

As you can see, I really don't bet often
in the small blind. If I do it is because
I raised before the flop or have just one
or two opponents in with me after the flop.

In these siuations, it makes it a bit
easier to bet. However, if I'm in the hand
with multiple callers, I really don't see
a reason to bet after the flop.

If you play the small blind with caution,
you will rake more pots and outplay your
opponents all night long.
 
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ph_il

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NewSetUp said:
I like to push the action and make things
happen. However, there is a position at
the table that I am very hesitant to play
aggressively.

And that position is small blind, which is
just to the left of the dealer.

This position is very tough to play because
you are first to act after the flop.

I've found that playing aggressively from
this position will only lead to trouble.

Here's how.

Let's say you're dealt a Q9 of diamonds
and four of your opponents limp in to see
the flop.

You like your hand and already have half
of your ante in the pot, so you also decide
to also limp in.

The flop hits Q,3,7 with no diamonds on
the board. Now you are first to act with
the top pair on board.

Should you throw out a bet?

I wouldn't!

It can only lead to trouble because of
your positioning. There are four other
players that can act after you.

They could be holding a number of hands
that beat yours. If you throw out a bet
and Drew is sitting on JQ, you are in big
trouble.

Why throw out a bet here?

It doesn't make sense.

Check and see what your opponents do.
If everyone checks, then you may want
to make a bet after the turn card.

However, betting after the flop will only
get you in trouble if there are numerous
callers in the hand. Don't do it!
just thought i'd reply. the thing with being in small blind is you can represent a strong hand. if 4 people limped in before you ask yourself what could they be holding thats worthy of a limp in. most likely you'd think high/face cards or maybe mid-low pockets. since no-one raised, its unlikely someone is holding a high pocket pair or something like A/K. honestly if it was me, i wouldve most likely mucked the Q/9 simply because i dont play those kind of hands. but since this is theory: when the got to me, i wouldve made a small raise. you're in a great postion (late) to test the strength of a persons hand. after the flop again i would throw out a small raise just to see what other players do. since im showing strength pre and after the flop, i could take the pot there. and if someone calls you'll have to figure out if hes drawing his straight or maybe he has Q/low kicker or maybe even mid pair. on the turn if there isnt a scare card, ill throw in another bet to try and take the pot there. if i get called then ill check the river or if i get raised, ill muck.

newsetup said:
Now let's say your holding that same Q9
and the flop hits Q,9,3.

You've just flopped 2 pair.

Once again, your first to act.

Do you play this flop aggressively by
making a bet?

No again!

It wouldn't make sense to. Here is how
I would play this hand:

Check the flop and let one of the other
aggressive players make a stab at the pot.

After Drew thows out a $20 bet, I'd simply
call. The turn hits and its a 4, which I
know didn't help Drew's hand.

I check again as though my hand is weaker
than it actually is. Drew's not falling
for it. He checks right behind me.

The river is another 4 and once again,
I'm first to act. Now I can't check.

If I check here I take the chance that
Drew may not bet again, which means I make
no more money on the hand.

Instead, I throw out a $20 bet. I know
Drew has to call this with even a very
weak hand. He's pot committed and will
pay the $20 to simply see my cards.

As you can see, I really don't bet often
in the small blind. If I do it is because
I raised before the flop or have just one
or two opponents in with me after the flop.

In these siuations, it makes it a bit
easier to bet. However, if I'm in the hand
with multiple callers, I really don't see
a reason to bet after the flop.

If you play the small blind with caution,
you will rake more pots and outplay your
opponents all night long.
honestly i dont like idea of checking. i dont believe in slow playing so i wouldve made out a bet for the pot...to represent that i hit. if no one hit and they fold..oh well...i won a small pot. if they have something, they'll most likely call. the reason why i want to bet is because i dont want to give them a chance to see a free card. so, a bet is not only to protect your hand but also to build the pot if you can. now if you decide to check and they bet, here i would check raise them..again to build the pot and for protection. also it'll make them question the strengh of their hand. ...the last think you want to see is a K, 10, A, J hitting and someone hit their straigh draw. or a J hitting on the river to give someone a set or a better 2 pair. (again you couldve kicked out weaker hands with a PFR)

of course if someone rivers a better hand, thats just poker and luck. even if you were raising and betting and playing your hand right...theres nothing you oculd do about it, but if you were just checking and hoping to trap and take them out......but end up losing because you let them catch, then its not only luck that they hit, but your fault for letting them.
 
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Flipper33

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Small Blind

I don't relax my standards for playing hands in the small blind. Acting first can be intimidating. Unless I hit better than one pair, I'm in a very vulnerable position.
 
J

jde_07

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Mar 28, 2005
Total posts
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yeah you should only play top hands when in that position unless you get it cheap but still its not really worth it. Slow playing is a bad idea too because unless you flop a monster there is a chance somebody could draw out and it is frustrating to watch somebody stack your chips becuase you let them go runner runner on you. when all you had to do is bet to get rid of them on the flop.
 
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KrRaP42

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try slow playing sometimes, trust me it works, then next time play aggresive with the best hand, so in other words mix up your game
 
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ph_il

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slow playing is an invitation for someone to come and hurt you if you arent holding the nuts already.
 
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2bithoe

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I don't play a queen nine in a tournament,i hate that hand. I throw it away small blind or not.
 
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Smarts

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I like to see the flop, if no one raises, in the small blind. I feel like I'm paying half the money to see the flop. And if I hit it big then I stay in, if I miss then no big loss.
 
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colin_147

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I have been trying different strategies in tourneys recently and slow playing, which I never normally do, cost me dear yesterday.

I am sitting with Q Q and flop comes Qh 7c 3d. I know I have the premium hand here and will probably win the pot. There are 3 callers. I would normally make a big raise here, even pre-flop, but, hey, its a freeroll. So I check turn card comes 9c, some guy makes a small raise I limp in, river card comes Jc. Now I am slightly worried someone has ht flush but raise big stack and get-re-raised. Go all-in, guy turns 4c 3c. So lose and am out of the tourney for slow playing when I could have got him out real early with a big raise

I am just sticking to my strategy of not letting weak player with weak hands see the flop for free, no way. If you have a strong hand with 2 cards suited on the table, and the turn and river cards to come. Just make a huge raise...no good players will call chasing cards for a possible flush
 
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paradocks

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If you're going to slow play like that its treacherous, I just would've checked on the river
.. He cant have really got any idea of the strength of the hand you're playing so I wouldnt be expecting a huge raise from him, rather the type of raise that he wants called.. So at least if you dont end up properly mucking the hand at the end its not going to cost you anywhere near as much
 
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smtbonzi

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Is it being small blind or just first to bet after the button that you are basing this on?
 
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xdmanx007

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Smarts said:
I like to see the flop, if no one raises, in the small blind. I feel like I'm paying half the money to see the flop. And if I hit it big then I stay in, if I miss then no big loss.
That bet you fire from the small blind with a junk hand had better be in a big multiway pot. If not you are better served just folding simply because its not worth a bet in a small pot to play a marginal hand. Remember the bets you save are just as important as the ones you win!

colin_147 said:
I have been trying different strategies in tourneys recently and slow playing, which I never normally do, cost me dear yesterday.

I am sitting with Q Q and flop comes Qh 7c 3d. I know I have the premium hand here and will probably win the pot. There are 3 callers. I would normally make a big raise here, even pre-flop, but, hey, its a freeroll. So I check turn card comes 9c, some guy makes a small raise I limp in, river card comes Jc. Now I am slightly worried someone has ht flush but raise big stack and get-re-raised. Go all-in, guy turns 4c 3c. So lose and am out of the tourney for slow playing when I could have got him out real early with a big raise

I am just sticking to my strategy of not letting weak player with weak hands see the flop for free, no way. If you have a strong hand with 2 cards suited on the table, and the turn and river cards to come. Just make a huge raise...no good players will call chasing cards for a possible flush
Colin slow playing a big flopped hand is usually only necessary against good players. In most low stakes online holdem games play it straight up. There will always some idiot who thinks you are bluffing and call ya to the river! Slow=deception and that is not something that you should use alot in small stakes online hold'em it simply isn't necessary in most cases
 
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