Free Poker Strategy Articles

A collection of poker posts written by poker players for poker players

Playing AK Against A Strong Range

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Two thirds of the time with AK we flop Ace-high and little more, but a fairly common draw with this hand is the broadway gutshot. The following hand was sent in by MiamiConfusion and illustrates some common themes when playing Ace King against a strong range.

MiamiConfusion gives us this information to set up the hand:

It’s early in the morning in NL5 Zoom, your average player is a nit, players don’t like getting to showdown with second best, only some regs bluff often enough for you to call light. Continue reading

When Folding Is A Costly Poker Leak

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This live $2/$3 hand sent in by Arash provides an example of how nitty play can seriously cut into our poker profit. Facing an open from a player in middle position, Arash decides to defend the big blind with T♠8♠. This is kind of a gross spot due to Villain’s starting stack of 50bb. We’re getting 1.67:1 on our call which in percentage terms is about 37%. So the critical question is “Are you going to win this pot at least 37% of the time?” If yes, then go ahead and get involved; if no, just fold.

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Folding Top Pair With AK?

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It really seems that Ace King creates more nightmares for players than any other hand. Today, we’ll explore a hand where AK flops top pair/top kicker that needs to decide whether or not to put it all-in. This spot was played in a live $1/$2 cash game and exemplifies how a results-oriented thought process can really lead players to second-guess SUPER +EV plays. Let’s check out the hand…

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Equilab Quick Start Guide [Poker Software]

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PokerStove used to be my go-to poker equity calculator, but overtime I’ve upgraded to Equilab.  Equilab, a free piece of software from PokerStrategy.com, is like PokerStove on steroids with some elements of Flopzilla thrown in for good measure.  So I fully suggest that you stop using PokerStove and start using Equilab.  If you’ve never used Equilab before this video & article combo will show you the basics and give you some helpful tips for using this software more efficiently.   Continue reading

AK Sucks

How To Play Ace King When It Misses?

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It’s little wonder that the biggest question players have regarding flop play with AK is “what to do when we miss?” As you already know, AK will have Ace-high a huge 67% of the time after the flop.

Many of the difficulties with AK occur in 3-bet pots for the following 2 simple reasons:

1. AK is often strong enough to 3-bet
2. AK is strong enough to call a 3-bet (assuming it doesn’t 4-bet)

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Live Poker Coach

Las Vegas Live Poker Coaching 2018

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One of the toughest things for live poker players is getting coaching. Online players can easily track their play with their database and they can have a coach watch their screen while they play. This allows the student and coach to work together seamlessly both during and between sessions.

Live players don’t have that luxury. Live play isn’t tracked, hands are not automatically stored, and having a coach watch you play live is pretty much impossible. But I’m all about finding solutions to difficult poker problems – and this is no exception!

If you play live ($1/$2-$5/$10) and are in the US – I’d like to invite you to sign up for a live coaching session. My live coach sessions are a unique experience for live players – giving you the chance to get your play critiqued, get an objective analysis of your game, and get answers to the questions you have.

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Playing Top Pair + A Gutshot

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In today’s video, we’re going to review a hand sent in by Dan. This is a hand from $1/$3 live and Dan goes pretty aggressive with 86os. So let’s check out the hand and see if it was any good.

In this hand, we have a limp, a limp, a limp, and Dan decides to attack to $20. And Dan says this in the write-up:

Seat 7 through 9 in this game are very loose, somewhat aggressive players. They don’t seem to care about position or odds. They’re having fun, they like to gamble. They’re not passive players either. They like to and are comfortable making big bets with draws. Continue reading

tournament bubbles

Optimizing Your Bubble Decisions In Poker Tournaments

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The bubble stage of a tournament presents the greatest opportunity for chip accumulation. However, it also often leads to the most costly blunders in a tournament.

Walking the bubble tight-rope can be tricky so let’s go through important points that will help you navigate through your next tournament bubble as profitably as possible. Giving yourself the best chance of cashing, and getting set-up for victory.

The bubble effect arises because of the non-linearity of chips value in tournaments due to the varying payouts. If you’re in a tournament where 36 get paid, with 37 players remaining, and with a relatively short stack, calling a preflop all-in without a very high likelihood of winning against an opponent is a disaster. Continue reading

Hero-Folding AK In A 3Bet Pot

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Ace King creates more issues for players than seemingly any other hand. Today, we’ll explore the question “can we fold top pair/top kicker with AK postflop?” And to spice it up, we’ll explore it through the lens of a 3bet pot. A special thank you to ‘M’ for sending in this 50NL hand history, and without further ado, let’s see if hero-folding AK makes sense here… Continue reading