Category Archives: Beginner Poker Strategy

ABC Poker Strategy

ABC Poker: The Simple Strategy

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The concept of ABC poker is oftentimes misunderstood.  Many players think ABC poker is playing some super exploitable and dumbed-down strategy that makes about 0bb/100.  However, ABC poker is really just a term to describe a simple strategy that focuses on good fundamental play and veers away from FPS (fancy play syndrome).  

In full disclosure, I use an ABC strategy quite often, especially in live games and micro stakes online games.  But if I’m fully capable of using a LAG strategy, why would I use such a simplified strategy?

Imagine playing in a brand-new game.  Every player is unknown to you, you have zero information on any opponent, and it folds to you with T♣8♠ in middle position.  An ABC player would just fold here.  T8o isn’t a default open-raise from middle position and thus it’s an easy fold.  

But if I had information, such as everyone behind me is tight, then I’m going to break away from ABC and raise to try and steal the blinds from a non-steal spot.  This is how I would play as a default too.  With information I’m going to raise and try to pick up the pot preflop…but without information, I would resort to a default strategy of just folding my weak hand because I don’t have information on the other players.  

This, in essence, is ABC poker.

This same concept can be applied to postflop poker.  With information, you may continuation bet more, size your value bets more perfectly, and even run double barrels and overbets more often.  But without information, or even with super minimal information like a sample size of 14, you will oftentimes have to revert back to default lines.  

The ABC Poker Playbook

Since ABC poker boils down to simpler play, their playbook is usually easy. They typically use a small ball poker strategy and utilize an easy bet sizing strategy that prioritizes a single size over multiple. They also avoid mixed strategies and instead use a binary approach when building their ranges.

So what are some ABC lines that players use?

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Understanding 3-Bet Ranges

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As poker matures and aggression increases, it’s very important that you are understanding 3-bet ranges correctly. Today’s players are using advanced 3 bets more often and applying lots of preflop pressure, so it’s imperative that we can handle their 3bets profitably. In this article, we are going to discuss how to analyze a 3-bet range to help choose the best line when facing a 3bet.

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Free Poker Calculators

7 Poker Calculators Every Player Should Use (Plus Downloads!)

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There are countless advanced tools for studying poker, but sometimes a simple poker calculator is all you need. So I’ve put together a list of the 7 poker calculators that every player should use. Be sure to bookmark this page, or you can even download my entire poker spreadsheet collection for offline usage.

When it comes to calculators, the most important thing is that you are inputting the correct numbers. Each tool includes a quick blurb showing you which numbers you need, where to get them, and how to interpret the output. Have fun playing with each calculator and feel free to tweet at me if you have any questions.

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Live & Casino Poker Strategy 101

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Live poker, and poker played in casinos and cardrooms, requires some strategic nuance to win more per hour. With some basic adjustments and a deeper understanding of the game flow, you’ll find both preflop and postflop much easier to play.

This guide is going to break down some easy adjustments you can make to your game to capitalize on the uniqueness of live poker games. Learn how to play in games where players hate folding preflop, playing with different stack sizes, the mechanics of bluffing, beating slow players, and even how to craft your own preflop ranges.

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TAG Poker Strategy: Explained

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Of the 6 major player types, TAG is the most important.  The average grinder employs a TAG poker strategy and many players should learn a TAG style before doing anything else.  TAG is an abbreviation for “Tight Aggressive” and is in between a nit and a LAG.  In this guide you will learn what a TAG is, get ideas on their ranges, and get some easy-to-use advice for beating them.

What Is A TAG?

Each poker player has basically 2 decisions when the action gets to him – will he fold the hand he’s dealt, or play it?  If he decides to play, then he has one other decision – will he call the amount of the current bet, or will he raise it up?

Play or Fold

Each player has his own decision-making process for deciding which hands they are going to play and which they will fold.  Some players will play every single hand as long as there is no raise (“let’s see a flop, you can’t win if you don’t play!”).  Other players will always fold certain hands but always play others, regardless of the action before them (“deuce-four is my favorite hand”!).  Still others will use other criteria besides their cards for deciding what hands to play – things like their position relative to the blinds or their likely opponents in the hand.  As your poker skills improve your decision matrix for choosing which hands to play gets simpler.

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Your Starting Stake In Poker

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If you are new to poker, you may not know which stake to start at. Should you start at the smallest limit your poker room allows for? Or should you play at the biggest stake your bankroll can afford?

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Implied Odds Calculator

Free Pot Odds & Implied Odds Poker Calculators

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Odds in poker can be a bit…odd. So let’s break down pot odds, implied odds, and give you some free tools so you can quickly calculate these on your own. Or skip ahead to the calculator for you:

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The +EV Poker Squeeze

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One of the most profitable plays available to you in a game where preflop raises tend to get one or more callers is the squeeze. Done correctly, squeezing can pick up lots of uncontested pots preflop, even when you have marginal hands.

But squeeze in the wrong spots, and you will bleed chips quickly.

So let’s explore this together.

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free poker sheets

Free Poker Spreadsheets

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Poker contains a lot of repetitive math, especially when studying poker hands away from the table. While you can use software to do a lot of this math, sometimes a good ‘ol fashioned spreadsheet is the best way to visualize and play with the numbers. So to save you a tremendous amount of time, I put together this pack of my spreadsheets that you are free to use while exploring spots!

This is a name-your-own price download, so if money is super-tight, you can enter $0 and get it for free. But if you throw a few chips my way, not only would I massively appreciate it, but I’ll also give you a free PRO video AND over $200 in discounts. No pressure either way – I just wanted you to know your options 😃

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Auto-Profit Bets In Poker

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As a general rule, our main focus in poker is to make as many profitable bets as possible and reduce our number of losing bets along the way. One of the best ways to measure this is with the concept of auto-profit bets.

An auto-profit bet is when your opponent folds too often given your bet size, and as a result, you make an immediate profit when betting with any two cards. This is also referred to as a bet being “outright profitable” or “immediately profitable.”

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