When you become a regular at a certain level of play, you’re going to run into other regulars as well, and these are the people who you’re going to play with the most often. Because you have so many hands with them, you’ll have plenty of information that can be mined from the hands that they’ve taken to showdown. This is one of the most powerful things that online players can do to gain MAJOR edges against their opponents.
If you are using software like PokerTracker 4, you can do this work with ease (and if you aren’t using PT4, grab a free trial today) . In fact, I created a complete video showing exactly how you can do this work. It takes a little time, but it’s a good bet that putting in the effort to really explore their play will pay off major dividends in the future.
One way to think about exploring an opponent’s play is that you want to look at the decisions he or she is making on a micro level to make determinations about this person’s play on a macro level. In this video clip, we’re looking at very specific situations where the opponent is playing passively with second pair on wet boards and even an overpair in some situations. We see that this opponent most likely isn’t 3-betting with JJ the vast majority of the time, and we see that this Villain doesn’t seem to have a problem with calling down two streets with second pair.
These are all things that we can note on the micro level, and they’re good notes to have that will tell us a lot about how this particular opponent plays. However, they also tend to support an online narrative: This opponent is fairly passive post-flop.
Using the Micro and Macro
We can make notes in our HUD about specific situations, the micro, that might come up if we think they’re useful. This will give us information that we can use to make specific decisions in specific types of situations. However, once we’re able to develop a general narrative for a particular opponent, we can start to make determinations about his or her play in other situations that we don’t have specific examples of.
For instance, if villain is constantly calling preflop raises with JJ, we can assume they don’t 3bet TT either. Even if we don’t have any examples of villain just calling raises with TT, this is a logical assumptions given the way they are playing a similar and stronger hand.
HU vs Multi-Way Pots
At one point, we see our opponent in position three-way on the flop. Villain has called a middle position open with 55, and the big blind has called as well. The flop comes 844 rainbow, the big blind checks, the original raiser checks, and the action is on the player we’re studying. Instead of taking a stab at this pot, this Villain checks with 55 on 844r.
If we think about the general narrative that we’ve developed, it really fits in with the general post-flop passivity. If we hadn’t seen a specific situation of this player taking a shot in a situation like this, we would still give a flop bet a bit of a respect here because of the narrative we have seen being played out from other unrelated scenarios.
If you want even more filters to run, and more ways to find your opponent’s leaks, get the complete Explore To Exploit video. You’ll get in-depth tips, filters, and reports to run so you can find villain’s leaks…and then use that info to crush them hand after hand. It’s easy…once you know what to look for!