NLHE Advice #16-20: Diamonds in the Rough
16) Never look at your cards until it's your turn to act. You should watch your opponents look at their cards and try to pick up signs of strength or weakness. You also want to give off as little information as possible, and your opponents definitely can't read what you don't know. Try to memorize your cards and leave them alone from then on. Place a chip on them and play the hand. They won't change if you've placed a chip on them, lol.
17) Your opponent's probably not bluffing if… he shows someone else his cards, he wouldn't take a chance of that person giving it away. If he's complaining about his rotten luck, he won't bluff; then he'll be playing solid cards and showing off his bad beats. If he asks, "is it on me?" and then bets; for some reason people who ask or need to be reminded that it's their turn and then bet are almost never bluffing - it's a sure sign of strength. If his hand is shaking, that usually means one thing - pocket aces; but it definitely means an exciting hand and never means a bluff.
18) On the other hand your opponent might be bluffing if he's… holding his breath; if he's suddenly stopped shaking his leg or chewing his gum; if he's not talking to a soul and won't say a word; if he's acting strong and maybe staring you down. One way that is almost always a sure way to pick up a bluff in poker is to watch how the player pushes his chips in. If he spills some chips watch what happens next. If he quickly fixes them he's likely bluffing; if he lets them sit messed up he's probably not.
19) Against poker bullies you should raise less and call more. That's how you derail an aggressive maniac. You should rarely raise and just let him bet into your big hands, and you should call with a lot more hands than you normally would. Your medium strength hands go up in value against a bully, but you would never bet them. A bully won't call with crap but will very often raise with crap. Just keep calling him down when you have anything, and he'll eventually give you all his chips.
20) If you suspect that your opponent has missed a draw and you are first to act on the last round, it is extremely important that you don't bet. You might figure that you have the best hand, so you might as well bet. But that's foolish because the player won't call that bet if he did miss his draw; he'll only call if you're wrong. However, if you're pretty sure that he missed his draw you should check it to him. Players who have missed their draws will often make oversized bluffs because they think it's the only way they can win the pot now. You should let them make the bluff, and then take all their chips when you call and pick off the bluff.
♣ Continued at: No Limit Hold'em Strategy - In Conclusion
♣ Back to the index of Dead Money's guide to hold'em strategy.
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