your poker evolution
How to choose the right bet? How to exploit opponents with the size of their bets and make the most of each situation? How to choose the size of the bet correctly from the point of view of GTO (game theory optimum)? The answers to all these extremely important questions you will learn from today's material.
The answer to the question "Why do I need to make bets?" is very simple. Bets are made in order to put pressure on the opponent. The reason for making bets lies in complicating the opponents’ game as much as possible. After all, it's very easy to play with rivals who constantly check. You can impose your own game on such indecisive players. On the other hand, it's very difficult to play with those who often bets and raises. So choose which opponent you want to play with. Thus, the meaning of betting is quite understandable.
Next, let’s try to relate the reasons for bets to what size of them should be used.
In poker, you can look at each situation from different perspectives. For example, on the river, when you made two bets on the previous streets with the top set on the wet board, you have to make a decision: to make a third bet and get profit from the weaker hands, for example, lower sets or two pairs, or check and give the opponent the chance to bluff with an unclosed draw. However, in the second case, you can get less from the hands of average strength that check after you, but at the same time you call your bet, as if you made it. Therefore, each example will consider several points of view.
The secret is: the size of post-flop betting directly depends on the board on which the hand is played. Let’s try to classify the boards and situations by examples in order to make it easier to understand them.
This means that you caught a monster on the flop not only in this hand, but on average your range also gets into the board very well.
Example: You raised from UTG AA and you were called by the player in the big blind. The flop of K24 came out, and you have an overpair. But even if you did not have two aces, you could have such hands as AK, KQ, QJ, collecting the top pair, or KK collecting the set. At the same time, some of these hands are missing in the range of your opponent, because he would probably have 3bet such strong hands. Also, he usually has suited connectors, suited Ax hands and low pocket pairs, with which it will be very difficult for him to continue the round.
This means that your range has more nuts that on this board. Therefore, it will be very difficult to get paid for your strong combination: your opponent rarely has decent hands to continue in such situations.
In this case, making very big bets with a strong hand can be stupid: an opponent will not be able to pay for them. You need to look for ways to lure money from your opponent. It can be a check on the flop (slowplay) to disguise the power of your hand and give your opponent the opportunity to bluff more calmly. And this can be a small bet (around 30% of the pot) that the opponent can call much easier without having a very strong hand. Bets of this size can be seen at high limits cash games very often.
By the way, in this situation, you do not need to bluff big bets - you will pay heavily in those cases when the opponent still has something valuable. 30% bluff bets are extremely effective and often pay for themselves.
You will not get in the place of your opponent too often. As a rule, your range should be stronger than the opponent's range, if you play correctly. An exception is a situation where you call 3bet or defend your blinds, having good pot chances on the pre-flop. However, in this situation, you do not have to win hand too often.
As a rule, in this situation, opponents fight to the bitter end. Strong preflop ranges collect good combinations on postflop, and therefore strong combination against absolute nuts is rather frequent.
Example: on BB you (J10) 3bet the opponent on UTG, he called, the board AKQ came out. You collected nuts, but the opponent can also have very strong hands: AK, KQ, QQ. Among strong hands he may not have AA and KK which most likely would lead to 4bet.
In such situations, you can make big bets (2/3, 3/4, pot, pot overbet) and get a lot, because the opponent has something to pay for it.
But if you make similar bets only with strong hands, then opponents will eventually adjust and pay for them less. Therefore, in such situations it is necessary to perform bluffs from time to time (preferably with blockers), balancing your range. Of course, you will need to bluff with high stakes too, just as you bet with strong hands.
In this situation, your endurance is gut checked. Weak pre-flop ranges rarely get strong post-flop combinations, and that's why you will often play against weak hand.
Example: SB steal and BB call. Most players, while being on SB, perform stealing from 30 to 70 percent of the cases, i.e. with a huge number of average or even frankly bad starting hands. Also, the big blind is always very widely defended, and there are often two empty or weak combinations in the blind war on the flop.
Weak ranges include many hands: from to 46 to AA, that is why they will have nuts on each board. Nevertheless, there will also be a huge pile of weak hands on each board in weak ranges, with which rivals will be forced to bluff or surrender.
If your opponent is not often inclined to bluff post-flop, you will often get folds on your bets after his checks, so your bluffs will be extremely profitable. You do not have to make big bets: an expensive bluff may not pay off, and a small bet can get a call. It is better to make bets of medium size (from 40% to 60% of pot). On the other hand, a very strong hand sometimes requires slowplaying. A strong hand is rare and you will rarely be paid. If you often bluff, you should also make value bets, because there are arguments for a quick nuts draw through 3 bets of the same size, from 40 to 60 percent of the pot.
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