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Old 04-20-2007, 01:44 AM   #151
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Omaha - A lesson in protection

Even more important than winning a big pot in omaha, is protecting your stack. Avoiding bad draws is a good way to do this. Here are some examples of draws you should dump.

Hand 9876

Flop JT2

although a Q987 make you a straight, only a 7 makes the nuts. add a flush draw on the board to the equation, and that makes 2, possibly 3 cards that make the nuts. Consider if someone is playing AKQ, a likely starting hand, then you are drawing toward a disaster.

hand 7H 5D 4D 2H

flop 6H 6D 3D

you are faced with a raise and a pot sized reraise

You have 2 viable outs, maybe. With the pair on board your flush and straight draws are no good at all, meaning your only hope is to catch a miracle straight flush. Not likely. Dump the hand.

hand 2287 (If you look to previous posts, I warn about playing this hand)

flop AA2 turn K

you are faced with a bet and an all in.

You have made your hand. You have a boat. A call is automatic right? Wrong. This is the ass end boat, the worst of the worst, and the board is telling you that you are likely beat. If you call don't be surprised to see AA, AK, A2 or KK. I fold full houses all the time in omaha. It's what separates the good players from the great. A deuce may be your only out.

When drawing in omaha, always ask yourself how many "nut" outs you have. Outs to a straight or flush may not be "good" outs so be wise when choosing your draws when faced with pot-sized bets. Never draw to a flush or straight with a pair on board, and avoid playing those low pairs preflop altogether. Chase the nuts not the good hand.
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Old 04-20-2007, 12:01 PM   #152
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In the last few days I had fun in the NL and PL H/L tables. And just like you said there are people raising preflop with garbage and stuff.

I read a section in Phil Hellmuth's book on some strategy but he even admits himself that he isn't that good at it (he still is decent) but has a lot of failed experiments with the game....so it didn't tell me much...it just said its difficult to learn after playing Texas Holdem. So his beginner strategy is obvious....just play tight and only the top starting hands and you will win.

Aside from the errors you have mentioned, I learned right away why many people are bad at this game. Just in that post above....people don't realize the outs. In this game the big hands occur far more often than in Texas Holdem and even more than traditional poker. Get excited over a full house you made and you're screwed.

I think the biggest factor in this game is how many players are playing. If there are 10 people playing, thats 40 cards dealt and in this game there isusually more players in per flop than in holdem and a certain card can make a hand...it is a very high chance someone is holding that specific card. When a flush is the biggest out, I find myself making good folds with my lower flushes...even if it is a jack or queen high or something. And no suprise someone is holding the oh so powerful ace with a 2 (for possible low and other high cards.

So now I pretty much have 20x the play money chips as I started with..lol I guess its good that Im having fun with it...even at play money tables...it is true you need to find a good one where there aren't too many raises preflop.


I looked at the H/L games at my local casinos...and it is true that there are only higher tables...lowest Ive seen is $10-20 and thoe pots usually are over $1000.
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Old 04-21-2007, 08:02 PM   #153
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uhhh jusy woke up from the big slumber. 420 was nuts. The mets lost but that was hazy anyway. 20 some hours later I wake up. Time to play poker. Great post prolifical, I agree with it all. You don't have to always play premium hands, but avoid playing the wrong hands. Those middle cards and pairs will kill ya. Its off to the 60c sngs for a while for me. See my strategy for online freerolls soon.
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Old 04-24-2007, 03:20 PM   #154
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Freeroll tournament strategy

I've decided to break this up into two sections. The first is for amateurs who are new to the game and endgame strategy for all when the blinds are huge. The second section is for experienced players who read the board, bets, and opponents well.

Section I - Kamikaze 101

So you are new to poker. Not really sure how to outplay opponents yet. Well this section is for you. A simple course in freeroll tournaments for dummies.

1. Hand Selection

Since you are not really gonna understand when and how to bluff given your opponents actions lets simplify the whole process. We are mostly going to play what poker players call top 10 hands. That is the top 10%. These are those hands.

high pairs 100% of the time
AA KK QQ JJ

high connectors 95% of the time
AK AQ

middle pairs 90% of the time
TT 99 88 77

ace medium kicker 80% of the time
AJ AT A9

small pairs 65% of the time
66 55 44 33 22

high connectors 40% of the time
KQ KJ QJ (JT suited only)

weak ace 25% of the time
A8 A7 A6 A5 A4 A3 A2

Fold every other hand unless free in the big blind or cheap in the small blind.

The % next to the hand description is a rough outline of how often you should play those hands given the circumstances. For instance if faced with a raise and a reraise in front you can easily dump a hand like ace queen as it will generally not be the best hand. The weaker the percentage the less you should call or reraise a raise in front. I would suggest dumping any of the hands in the bottom 3 catagories when faced with a raise. Raising with those hands first however is recommended. Remember its always better to control the action and be the aggressor then call raises from an opponent in control of the hand.

2. Stealing blinds
So now you have picked your hand. Since in this style of play position is irrelevant, you can make your move from anywhere. Raise from any seat. Raise in 1st position you say? Definitely. TRADE SECRET: I've done plenty of experimenting and 1st position is one of the best places to steal from. This raise gives the appearance that your hand is stronger than it actually is because people see it as a very strong move. I routinely steal with mid-holdings like ace ten ace jack etc. and people fold in a flash giving me the blinds.

So this is part one of the strategy. Steal as many blinds as you can without being marked as loose or crazy. One way to affirm this is to steal with great hands and then show the first couple. People will say to themselves, hey he's betting preflop so he must have a hand. Only show the first couple at any new table and never ever show a bluff under any circumstances. This derails the whole strategy.

What to bet? Anywhere from 4x the blind to all-in depending on how comfortable you are with your hand and your stack. If your stack is less than 10x the blind go all-in. Otherwise you are committing yourself anyway and you want to isolate only one hand if called. If bigstacked, play around with the raises because if called, this comes into play in part 3 of this strategy. 4-5x should be enough. Continuously stealing the blinds over the course of a tournament is an integral part of winning.

3. Racing for bucks

Part 2 of the strategy is to play coinflips and dominating hands for all the money. If someone raises play the hands in column 1 for all the money. Reraise all-in. Column 2 and 3 hands can also be played this way but shy away from multiple raises in front as you are likely dominated. Try to avoid this strategy with the other columns. Consider those your stealing hands only.
This is the luck factor of the strategy. remember 22 is a 52% to 48% favorite over AK off suit so you are gambling. It is necessary to win many coinflips during a tournament in order to win but the size of your stack is a determining factor whether or not you go broke if you lose.

4. So you got called.....and are out of position

Part 3 of the strategy is the post flop play. If you are isolated against 1 opponent there is a 67% chance that they did NOT hit the flop. If you are 1st to act, bet half the pot no matter what flops whether it helps you or not. If they raise, they probably have you beat. Fold. If they call, they either have a decent hand, a draw, or a made hand and are slowplaying. This is where the toughest decision in the strategy comes to play. If you think they are on a draw or an ok hand, bet half the pot again on the turn. If they call or raise, you are most likely beat. Don't fire a third bullet. Check and see their reaction. If they fire at you, you have 3 choices. All-in which is pretty unlikely to work at this point, call only if you have a hand, or fold. Another way to play it is to check the turn after a call on the flop and see what happens. If they check back you can save that half the pot sized bet for the river. Firing 3 bullets is only advisable if you feel your opponent was on a draw and missed.

5. So you got called.....and are in position

If you are in position (last to act) and your opponent checks, fire half the pot. Basically what your opponent does will determine what you do. If your opponent is check calling all the way to the river, beware the slowplay. Check behind unless you are sure they were on a draw.

6. So you got called......by multiple players

Avoid this strategy with multiple opponents in the pot unless you actually have the hand. It is very tough to bluff many opponents out of a hand. The best time to try a bluff in this situation is to check the flop, and if everybody else checks, bet half the pot on the turn if an innocuous card falls. Mostly you are trying to avoid this situation altogether. Try your best to isolate against one hand and attack.

7. Slowplaying

Unless its the stone cold unbeatable nuts, don't bother. It works contrary to your style and therefore can be easily read by smart opponents. Betting directly into a monster is a far more deceptive move and will pay off more in the long run.

8. Conclusion of Section I

So there it is. Easy as pie. You hardly have to think at all. Play dirty and don't get caught. While this strategy has a low chance of success overall, If you manage to get lucky early and build a stack, you will see your success rate increase as your stack does. The strategy will be at its peak near the money when players are playing their tightest. You will be able to steal with just about anything then. You will find you get less and less callers as the tournament goes on. This is because most of the worst players are being eliminated. Good Luck and happy hunting!

oh yea almost forgot, If you get any of the hands in the 1st 3 columns on the first hand of the tournament, go all in. It will either end up as a huge time saver if you bust, or a huge early advantage if you win.

Section II coming tonight!
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Old 04-25-2007, 05:47 AM   #155
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Section II - Freeroll strategy for advanced players.

Note: This strategy is for stackbuilding early in the tournament. When the blind structure becomes unmanageable at the end of the tournament, refer to section I tactics.

1. Hand selection

While I recommend only playing top ten hands in section 1, the more advanced players should expand their preflop holdings to include any and all suited connectors and high suited junk hands like K2, Q3, etc. as well as low non-suited connectors like 45, 67. While you probably shouldn't raise too often with these hands, playing them for a call with adequate pot odds is a must especially if getting 3 to 1 or better. The idea is to see as many cheap flops as possible and try to catch or outplay your opponent.

2. stealing blinds

Not as necessary as in section I. Of course you want to naturally try to steal from the cutoff (seat behind the button) and the button to win the blinds every so often, but small pots aren't what we are going after. We want the monster pots that occur from taking down a superior preflop hand. Your money should come in large chunks with little risk overall to your stack.

3. Preflop Racing

While in section 1 this is necessary, it kind of works contrary to this style of play. After all you are trying to defeat the luck factor and this is gambling with your tournament life.

4. The preflop minimum raiser

Kill this guy. Make him pay for his stupidity. Call with any kind of junk hands in the blinds and look to flop a monster. Many times it won't happen, but the times it does more than make up for all the misses. Minimum preflop raising in hold em is absolutely stupid. You price in multiple opponents to call which is exactly what you don't want especially with a holding like aces or kings. Make them pay and pay dearly.

5. The overraiser

The player who exhibits section I style. Avoid like the plague! He is trying to beat you with dumb luck. He wants all the money in preflop. Don't fall into this trap. Wait for a better situation.

6. After the flop

Trust your reads. Draw cheaply to flushes and straights or semi-bluff all-in if you feel your opponent is weak. If your opponent checks, fire away, If he bets and you have nothing, raise or fold. But trust your instincts. If something looks like just a continuation bet, attack. If they bet big preflop then check on the flop, confirm if they were slowplaying by putting in a tester bet. The thing you want to do is - PLAY POKER! Show them you can play too. If you win a pot with nothing show your opponent, and then the next time you are in a pot with them and have a big hand play it exactly the same way. The likelihood of them calling will increase.

7. When to change to section I style

When you see that you are close to the money and everybody is tightening up, as well as an unmanageable blind structure, go nuts. Steal like Danny Ocean. If hugestacked go directly after the shortstacks. Apply tons of pressure. Make them fear you.

8. The final table

If shortstacked stick to section I style until 4 handed. Once down to 4 handed you cant be picky with what you play. Just find any hand and go. Most of the time the first raiser 4 handed wins the pot. If bigstacked attack the shortstacks ruthlessly preflop and post, and play a greater frequency of hands as the number of seats decreases.

9. Heads up

The aggressor is usually the winner. Any hand is at least worth a call of the big blind. Raise preflop a lot. The blind structure will undoubtedly be so high at this point that any hand you steal with will pay huge dividends. Any pair and any ace are good enough to push all in preflop. The chances that both players have a pair heads up is less than 1 in 300 so you are most likely a favorite to win the hand. Dominate the action. Keep your opponent on the ropes. And most important....WIN!

Good luck everybody. I hope I have helped you at least a little. If you have any specific situational questions post them here or pm me. I'm always open to answer your questions.
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Old 04-27-2007, 09:00 AM   #156
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I found a new online site to play on. Was sick and tired of the ridiculous bubble beats on Absolute so I decided to check bodog out. Good move. Signed up for the $500 freeroll at 4am. Just finished first in my first tournament there. I was shocked to get paid out $120 for first. These badboys put Absolute poker freerolls to shame.
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Old 05-02-2007, 07:07 AM   #157
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After a few days of bubbles and small money cashes on bodog I finally hit. The $2 rebuy $1000 guarantee is a great tournament. The competition is very weak and the payout ($300 for 1st) is way above average for a $2 tourny. I slammed the competition at the final table taking the prize. I played loose early building my stack to the chip lead after the first break when the rebuy ends. Then I completely pulled a 180 and played extremely tight up until the final table. Once I made that I was somewhere around the middle, and my style changed once again, stealing as much as I could and fast trapping my opponents. One player even commented that I was impossible to read the way I was playing. Anyway 7 out of the 8 others at the table fell to my sword. All in all a fun experience with no sore losers and gracious exits. I'm now going to try my first cashout to see if I need to deposit first or not. If I don't I will recommend this site to all those wanting to build a bankroll without the hassle of depositing money first. Absolute gave me the runaround on the private tourny for Wutangcorp.com so I will try again here. I'll let all you pokerheads here know if I am successful.

Cash game introduction coming soon.
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Old 05-02-2007, 01:21 PM   #158
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bodog approved my cashout (check by mail) with no deposit necessary. While the freerolls are huge 2000-4000 people they are fairly easy if you have enough patience (5 hours). A final table finish will net you enough money to move up to one and two dollar tournaments. From there the skys the limit. Any questions on advice regarding bodog, pm me or post them here.
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Old 05-02-2007, 02:27 PM   #159
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here is the final hand of the bodog tournament

me 256,993.64 chips hole cards Js 4s small blind (dealer)
him 191,006.36 chips hole cards 2c 4c big blind

ante 800 blinds 4000/8000

I call the big blind 4000 and he checks pot 17600

Flop 7s 2s 7c

he leads out 42,840

His betting pattern suggested that when he overbet the pot he tended to have a weak hand. No way I put him on a seven. I figure he hit his deuce and wants me gone. I decide to test him with a semibluff. I reraise all in. He calls immediately. I thought I was destroyed. He turns over the 4c 2c. I have three jacks, two fours, and 9 spades to win. with 14 outs and 2 streets to go the odds are 49%-48% (3% tie) in his favor. Not a horrible situation to get all the money in.

turn 3c

now he is a 66%-34% favorite. Still pretty good odds to win with only one card to come.

river 9s

the spade gives me the flush and the win. The situation was sticky in that if I lost I only would have had about 66,000 left in chips. Plus there was a $100 difference between first and second. But with the amount he bet and had left I simply could not call. I had to either go all in or fold. I decided to gamble. It paid off.
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Old 05-02-2007, 02:54 PM   #160
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That seems good...I might try that site.

WPE I haven't progressed much. The lower cash tournaments don't pay that well even with the rakeback. I've managed to double my bankroll in .05/.10 limit games along with the rakeback but there is still a yo-yo effect. That site is better with the limit tables. It would take a while before making a first $100 on there. It is meant more for people that play at least $1/$2. SNGs come and go, but there is usually only 5 people in those. $1-$2 tourneys would be better.
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Old 05-02-2007, 03:13 PM   #161
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Here is another interesting hand heads up from the same tournament. This undoubtedly was my most memorable hand from the tournament. I'm going to do something different here. I'm gonna give you the actions, and ask you guys to guess what his hand was. I'll reveal the answer later.

My stack 212,876.82
His stack 235,123.18

ante 800
blinds 4000/8000

My hand As Kc
His hand ??????

He is in the small blind and calls 4000
I reraise the minimum completely by accident, I meant to make a pot sized raise.

He calls 8000

pot 33,600

flop 6c 2d 4s

I lead out with 8000 to probe him. He raises the minimum to 16000
I call 8000

pot 65,600

(At this point I would like to mention this hand was played horribly up to this point.)

I have about 180,000 left

turn card 2h

I check

he bets 34800 about half the pot.
I call 34800

I have about 145,000 left

pot 135,200

river Qd

I check
he bets 58,600

pot is 193,800 I have ace high.

What do I do? Do I call leaving myself with 87,000 left if I lose. Do I raise and pray he folds? What would you do? What do you think he has?

I will reveal my action as well as his hand later. Meanwhile I want to see what you guys think.
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Old 05-02-2007, 03:24 PM   #162
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prolifical ENG View Post
That seems good...I might try that site.

WPE I haven't progressed much. The lower cash tournaments don't pay that well even with the rakeback. I've managed to double my bankroll in .05/.10 limit games along with the rakeback but there is still a yo-yo effect. That site is better with the limit tables. It would take a while before making a first $100 on there. It is meant more for people that play at least $1/$2. SNGs come and go, but there is usually only 5 people in those. $1-$2 tourneys would be better.
found out some rather disturbing news for you. Canadian players can't play on bodog! I'm tryin to figure out why.
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Old 05-02-2007, 03:26 PM   #163
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he probably had an open ended straight draw with A-3 or something. You went all in and your K kicker won.
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Old 05-02-2007, 05:41 PM   #164
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I flat called, and heres why......with the amount of money in the pot he could have called that raise with just about anything. I figure I call I may have him on just a draw like you said or he could have been trying to steal with a complete miss. I lose the pot there's still a decent shot to come back. He turned over Ac 9c. You were right I had him outkicked but he wasnt on any kind of draw. He played this hand really shitty, and I made a really tough call on the end with ace high. after the score was 339 - 108 (my 1st chiplead heads up) and i won soon after that.
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Old 05-12-2007, 11:14 PM   #165
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playin the 100k guaranteed on bodog 4pm sunday. 1st place pays 25000. I'll keep ya posted.
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