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Newbie With A Couple Of Questions About Putting Opponent On A Hand

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#1 Tofu-86


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Posted 19 August 2015 - 10:28 PM

I started playing NL 1-2 holdem a couple weeks ago and have been spending a lot of time studying and working on my game. From what I've seen at local casinos in South Florida, players in these game usually won't put on crazy bluffs and tend to play the cards more often than opponents, which is great if you can outplay them but not too great when you can't make good reads.

Just wondering what are the factors you guys would take into account when trying to determine if someone has AK AQ KQ or pocket pairs when he/she raise or light 3-bet pre-flop?

Since I am usually the one in late position and will usually fire for continuation bet, my opponent has to bet in the dark/ check-call my bet most of the time. From what I understand, bet in the dark usually says one of four things: 1. The board doesn't concern me. 2. I've made a pretty decent hand with the flop. 3. My hand could potentially be a monster so I want you to quit it now. 4. Standard continuation bet
So the question comes, what are the tells/ factors you look for when trying to determine which one is the it?

Last but not least, I've taken stabs at pots in late position many many times, sometimes I get a caller sometimes I don't. But I've failed to put them on a range of hands most of the time. Check-call from opponent is one play that has been very costly for me since I remember there were a couple of times where he checks-calls till the showdown and I just don't know if he's chasing something or have already made a hand. For the latter situation, I usually have decent hand (AQ off or T J suited and better) pre-flop but keeps missing the board, while the opponent has a hand (sometimes a monster like trips or better waiting for my bluff sometimes a low-medium pair with some sort of draw)

PS: I've been told I am a pretty aggressive player with very decent skill reparatory for someone who's relatively very new to the game. I am currently reading Gus Hansen's book so I am basically learning from the best. lol

#2 StormDeal


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Posted 27 August 2015 - 05:03 PM

Hello Newbie-

As a new player it is great that you realize that poker is far more than just the strength of your hand. I have been playing poker professionally (my main source of income) for about 12 years now. I started at 1-2 (like you) and am now up to 2-5 our biggest legal cash game here in Michigan.

Gus Hansen was a fine tournament player at one time, but he is the all time money loser in cash games. (fact check online if you do not believe). I think you should forget everything you read in Gus's books. You ask about reading players preflop in 3 bet situations. This is very hard for even the seasoned professionals to do. Normally it takes to the flop and turn action to really give you a decisive read on your opponent.

My best advice for you is to play, and observe repeat repeat repeat. I do have some shortcuts for you. One trick that I used to do and sometimes still do is sit down at a table and fold fold fold and fold again.The 1st half hour I will not play a hand, unless its a premium. But when I am folding I do not play on my phone, listen to music, talk to the other players or daydream. I concentrate and watch my opponents every move. If they get caught bluffing on the river were they leaning forward or sitting back, did they rub their hands? Did they push chips forcefully, slide smoothly, splash pot or pound chips down. Did they talk?

Start by watch the most active players, you know the ones playing 50% of the pots. Chances are thats who you will be heads up with. How often do they 3 bet? What kind of hands did they showdown. After 1/2 hour or even hour you will know how all the players play and they think you are super tight. Now when you 3 bet with 10 9 of hearts they will think you have AA and fold a lot to you.

As far as books I would read Mike Caro book of tells book. It is very old but still very effective. The poker blueprint by Tri Nguyen is an excellent modern book that has many advanced strategies small stakes NL. When Ii started out I also liked Dan Harrington's cash game books.

I know my strategies are a bit boring but they will make you money. The truth is none of these books or strategies of mine will make you a great player that part is up to you. Good luck my friend and RUN GOOD.

#3 MonkeyTilt


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Posted 03 July 2016 - 03:21 AM

Everything starts from preflop. Understand your ranges for opening, cold calling and reraising, then apply how you think a villain's range will differ and use logic to remove hands from the range that is left.

Getting your pre flop play sorted out first will help prevent massive mistakes on more expensive streets, and get you started with hand reading from the get go .

#4 JQKAndrei


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Posted 29 September 2016 - 03:16 AM


Check-call from opponent is one play that has been very costly for me since I remember there were a couple of times where he checks-calls till the showdown and I just don't know if he's chasing something or have already made a hand

Read that again. Daniel said that too, and then he thought "why don't I become "that guy"?"

As you can see, checking the flop can be a lot more beneficial and can mislead opponents, they're the ones guessing.

#5 FlopBeforeFolding


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Posted 02 March 2017 - 12:47 PM

Just try to play, and observe each and every opponent. I can't stress this enough. When I first began playing poker I would fold a hand and doddle around looking at my surroundings whether it was waiters/waitresses bringing trays full of drinks or checking my phone for Facebook status updates when I should've instead been watching the players that were still playing their hands and study their moves, how they handle certain types of cards whether it eas pocket aces or pair of twos.

#6 onecardsteve


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Posted 14 June 2017 - 07:02 AM

I play $ 1/2NLHE, bankroll not big enough to go to 2/5. When I have been observing players when I am not in a hand, at 1/2 at Foxwoods the standard pre-flop raise for premium hands is around $17. But.. I have recently seen a lot of slow betting/playing Ks with a raise to $10. Generally any raise from about $6 -10 is usually a mid pair , connected cards, suited connectors and even 2-3 Gappers, You will see some LAGs raise on the button because they are on the button, you do hope it goes down to showdown to see the button's hand.

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