Win Without Looking At Your Cards

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t1riel

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I was reading an article by DANIEL NEGREANU (again) and it was about how you could win against another player without looking at your cards. The key points he mentioned were:

• Position. It is a huge advantage to see the other player (s) actions before you avt. Check, bet, or even overbet the pots will give you key information as to the strength of their hands. You can use your position to steal pots.

• Reading tells. If you focus and pay attention, you'll pick up player information you don't even realize like how a player bets his chips a certain way.

• Scare cards. I'll quote a story he uses as an example to explain this.

"Doyle Brunson is a master at combining position and reading tells to determine the strength of his opponent's hand. Yet there is one more piece to the puzzle. Doyle can get inside his opponent's head and figure out what he's holding.
Let's say, for example, Doyle calls a tight, conservative player who raised from early position. Doyle won't even have to look at his hole cards. Instead, he'll combine position, tells and the board cards to outplay his opponent.

OK, now the flop comes eight of hearts, nine of hearts and seven of spades, and Doyle's opponent bets the whole pot. Based on previous hands against this player, Doyle believes that his opponent has to have a hand like a pair of aces, kings or queens, without ever looking at his cards, he makes the call.

Then the turn card comes — 10 of hearts. The opponent checks, and Doyle can now steal the pot by representing either the straight or the flush. His opponent can't call."

If you can read a player's body language tells it reveals the strength of the players cards, therefore, it will make beating the player so much easier.
 
tenbob

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Its so true though. Try it, ive done it a few times, enter a small sit and go, and cover your cards (dont cheat) and simply play you position. You'll be suprised at how far you can get. Great learning excercise. Dont do it in a $50 sit and go though, that would be stupid. :)
 
trentonlf

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I read something once by Phil Gordon saying the same thing. he said to sit at a ring game and only play postional hands without looking at your cards and you would find yourself winning more than you would think.


g/l
 
titans4ever

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In NL you can play no peek in late position with a hand and be amazed at what will fold. It is a poker delemma. You have 2 cards, the math that you will get a pair on the flop is about 38% but that is the same for your opponent. Forget about flush or straight draws since you can make the pot odds not there to chase with your continuation bet after the flop. You bet it out and the person you are playing against more often than not has not improved.
 
Tammy

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I don't play live very often, and I'm usually a bit nervous when I do. I didn't even think to look and watch my opponents very closely until it got to my turn to act. I remember tenbob (I think) posted somewhere that you should watch the players before you even look at your cards, because then you can pay closer attention to your opponents tells. If you look at your cards before hand, then you are already thinking of your course of action. Useful information, and I intend to apply it to my play next time I take a drive over to the local Indian Casino!
 
titans4ever

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The other reason you don't look at your cards until your turn is so you don't give away any tells about your hand. You peek and act. No way to give away any information.

For this thread I guess you would just fire out a bet and don't peek.
 
tenbob

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gfpokerfan said:
For this thread I guess you would just fire out a bet and don't peek.

:) Dont ya just love it !!!! The fact is this can be done, but the table conditions have to be correct. If your the big stack near the bubble, on the button with 2 short(ish) but not desperate stacks in the blinds, then yep fire away at them. Your cards dont even matter, make sure that the blinds dont know that you hav'nt seen them thought ;)
 
Bill_Hollorian

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Ridiculous...

Doyle can do it, Daniel can do it... The rest of us can not, and should not.
Oh unless, you play in the same games they do...

Bill
 
Jesus Lederer

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I guess i´m getting in trouble but i disagree with you Bill.
Why we shouldn´t consider some factors like position, table image, and reads like styles and betting patterns (i know tells are a factor, but they aren´t so important as they seem. In my opinion people in general overvalue them. The "real tells" are betting patterns. If the tell confirm your completely read, then go and do the move without any doubt), instead of just playing depending of the value of our hands?
Of course i know that if we´re talking about microlimits you cannot apply those strategies, because nobody uses position and you don´t have any table image. In relation to betting patterns, they are almost the same at those limits so you should just stick to the same strategie (ultra tight-ultra aggressive and never bluff).
I know that we don´t play in the same games Doyle and Daniel do, but in my opinion at any normal quality game we should try playing something else than our cards´s value. I don´t say that you should cover your cards or make a blind all in. What i´m trying to say is that there are some moments where you should do some moves based just in the information you have and where your cards really doesn´t matter. For example player Ñ makes a 6xBB bet. You have seen him doing that with pocket pairs like JJ or TT, because he likes to protect very much his vulnerable pocket pairs. You call with XX. The flop shows AK4, and player Ñ bets the pot. Now you know he´s representing the flop with a continuation bet, so what you do is to raise him because you know he´s going to fold. There it doesn´t matter what cards you have, what matters is what you think he has and what you induce your opponent to think you have. You´re going to obtain the same result by raising with AA or with 27. That´s why you can (and must in certain situations) play "without looking your cards".
I see your point Bill, but in my opinion you can apply those strategies at any normal quality game, not just at "their" games (highest quality with huge stakes).
 
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beardyian

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The cards im getting lately i dont want to look at them anyway ;)


IanT
 
tenbob

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Bill_Hollorian said:
Ridiculous...

Doyle can do it, Daniel can do it... The rest of us can not, and should not.
Oh unless, you play in the same games they do...

Bill

I dont usually disagree with you Bill, but on this occasion i feel that i must. The excercise in position i talked about was for a small buy-in online sit and go. This is not about winning the game, in fact youll lose, quiet quickly. Its about attempting to concentrate your mind on what exactly table position means, attempting to get an idea of how important the action in front of you is. The fact is when you play JUST your table position you tend to concentrate more on it. You will also pick up much more on betting patterns. This stuff should all be used in conjunction with seeing you cards of course, its just an excercise, too many players especially online ignore this stuff, and ONLY play their own cards !

We are players here that are attempting to learn the game, these little things are what helps or helped me in the past.

tenbob said:
The fact is this can be done, but the table conditions have to be correct. If your the big stack near the bubble, on the button with 2 short(ish) but not desperate stacks in the blinds, then yep fire away at them. Your cards dont even matter,

Oh yea, ill stand by that. The conditions need to be correct to do things like this however. I dont need to be Doyle to make a steal ! This is NOT a cash game play, its a small tourney situation that you will come across quite often, especially when its a shorthanded game.
 
Bill_Hollorian

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Good arguments, but...

Poker is based on imperfect and incomplete information. Having less information because you do not look at your cards is ridiculous. You can make the same move, after looking at your cards whatever their value is.

2.) Betting a guy off of a weak vulnerable hand is not magic... If you feel he missed simply bet an appropriate bet, and you will get him off his hand. Let's say you dont look, and it turns out you had KK, which improved to a set on the flop., but you havent looked yet. How do you gauge if you are extacting full value on the hand?

3.) Being a game of imperfect information, using your hole cards in any position can help you GIVE information to your opponent to help him process incorrectly. In other words, looking at your hand helps you manipulate information for him to make mistakes with.

3.) Doyle is talking about "real" no limit cash holdem. In real no limit you can rebuy for as much as you want. Therfore, if your "tell" is wrong you can simply rebuy to cover all of your opponents at the table.
You cant do that in tournaments... if your wrong you are out.
You cant do that in toddler no limit fi you are wrong and double the guy up you can only rebuy for the max amount. Which cripples you a bit.

So, to clarify. In games where information is limited, having as much information as possible is positive ev. including knowing the cards in your possesion.
If you are bankrolled 10 million times the buy in... Go ahead, stop looking at your cards. For the record if you have an opponent not looking at his cards, push with Q,8 or better. It is the break point against a single random unknown hand.

If you can rebuy to cover the guy you just doubled up playing blind, go ahead and play blind.

Position is king no doubt, and playing blind can be done... You can also draw a Q,2 and hope to make quads... and it will happen once in a while.

A caveat: if given the choice would you rather play out of position every hand, but be able to look at your cards... Or in position and play blind... Every hand until your broke?

Just curious, can we get a poll on that?

Good discussion guys!

Bill
 
Bill_Hollorian

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Actually, Tenbob, I do agree with what you said there...

If it is an exercise to isolate a certain portion of the game to analyze it more efectively I agree. I think it can be a valid study tool.

But only for study!

Bill
 
Kj Sexton

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One of the best tells I've come across is how much your opponett is watching you. It seems for the most part those who watch you like a hawk through out the hand are bluffing. (Unless we're talking Mr. Poker Champion , you can never tell with those guys) Though Poker like all things in life is all about timing & position.
 
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