intermediate
Doug Polk vs Daniel Negreanu at $200/$400: Two Live Bluffs Analyzed
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If you haven’t been following the Doug Polk vs Daniel Negreanu Heads Up Grudge Match, you’ve been missing out. Doug jumped out to a lead of almost a million, but Daniel has since cut the deficit to just under $500,000. The match has already provided amazing entertainment value to those following the action. But on top of all that, the grudge match is also giving serious poker players a great opportunity to improve their game by studying high-level play from two of the most respected poker players in the world. With this in mind, we’re going to be analyzing a couple of interesting bluff spots from Doug and Daniel’s first $200/$400 session that was played live in Vegas. Let’s jump in. Note: The entire 3.5+ hour session can be watched here (the actual poker starts 5 minutes into the video): Hand 1: Doug Bluffs with King-High Preflop Our first hand begins with Daniel opening the button to $1000 (2.5x) with 8♥ 8♦. Doug then 3-bets in the BB to $4125 (~4.1x) with K♣ 5♦. Daniel calls and we head to the flop with $8250 in the middle. Preflop Analysis Everything looks good from both players preflop. Doug’s 3-bet with K♣ 5♦ may seem loose, but these types of hands are good to 3-bet at a low frequency in heads-up. Remember that the ranges of both players are going to be significantly wider than what you would encounter in the typical 6-max game. Daniel is going to be raising over 80% of his buttons and for this reason Doug is going to need to defend a wide range of hands. Facing the 3-bet, Daniel has a clear call. His hand is too strong to fold, and not strong enough to 4-bet. Note: Want to know how to play every hand in every common preflop situation? Get instant access to extensive preflop charts and lessons (for cash games, heads-up and tournaments) when you join the Upswing Lab training course. Lock your seat now! The Advanced Solver Ranges for cash games — one of five sets of preflop charts in the Upswing Lab. Flop The flop comes T♣ 4♣ 3♦, and Doug bets $5,400 (⅔ pot). Daniel calls the bet and we go to the turn with $19,050 in the pot. Flop Analysis Despite the flush draw on the board, this is a pretty dry flop. Doug should expect to win with a continuation bet on this board a fair bit of the time. Even if he doesn’t, his backdoor straight and flush outs set him up for some good double and triple-barrel bets on good turns and rivers. He could also win, of course, if he hits a king. As far as sizing, Doug could use a small or large-sized bet on this board. In this case, I think K♣ 5♦ falls really nicely into a big-bet bluff range. Daniel doesn’t flop a big hand on this board very often, and by betting big, Doug can use his overall range advantage to put more pressure on Daniel’s marginal holdings. That said, this board also isn’t too bad for Daniel either. Of course, Daniel would prefer the whole flop to be undercards to his pair, but in heads-up pocket eights is in reasonable shape here against Doug’s whole range. Daniel should probably be planning to call at least one more big bet from Doug on safe turn’s and then evaluate again on the river. Both players are playing well so far, let’s head to the turn. Turn The turn is the 3♣, making the board T♣ 4♣ 3♦ 3♣. Doug puts out a small ⅓ pot bet of $6,000. After tanking Daniel decides to fold. Turn Analysis The turn not only completes the flush but pairs the board as well, making this spot very interesting for both players. Doug now has the second nut-flush draw, and Daniel has improved to a decent two pair. Let’s start off by thinking about this turn from Doug’s point-of-view. In general, the flush completing on the turn is going to be better for Daniel’s range than Doug. Daniel is also more likely to have hands with a 3 in his range than Doug, but not by much. However, Doug still has the overall range advantage on this turn. Doug can have all of the suited broadway hands in his range that might have completed to a flush, along with all of the big overpairs that are still in good shape against the middle of Daniel’s range. Considering all of these factors, I think a small bet from Doug is perfect in this situation. By betting small, Doug’s overpairs and Tx holdings can still get value from the middle of Daniel’s range that might have been forced to fold if Doug had used a bigger sizing. Additionally, a small bet doesn’t bloat the pot and protects Doug from value-cutting himself against the top of Daniel’s range. As is always the rule with poker, every bet needs to have a balanced range of bluff and value hands. In this case, K♣ 5♦, with its potential pair outs along with the second-nut flush draw, is a great bluffing hand to mix with Doug’s small-bet value-range. Over to Daniel, who is now in a tricky spot: Facing a ⅓ pot bet, Daniel is being laid 4 to 1 odds. This means Daniel only needs 20% equity to make this a correct call. Not having a club certainly isn’t good here, but even without a club, I think this is just slightly too tight of a fold from DNegs. This hand may in some ways illustrate the difference in experience levels at heads-up between Doug and Daniel. If this were 6-max or an MTT, folds like this from Daniel would be considered disciplined laydowns. But in heads-up, too many tight folds can be very costly against aggressive players like Doug. Hand 2: Daniel Takes an Unorthodox Line Preflop Our second hand starts off with both players being deeper with effective stacks at $57,000 (142BB). Doug opens the button to $900 (2.25x) with T♠ T♦. Daniel then 3-bets to $4000 (4.4x) with 6♣ 5♣. Doug calls and we head to the flop with $8,000 in the pot. Preflop Analysis Again, both player’s preflop play is correct. Doug should almost always 4-bet this hand at 100BBs, but calling is fine at deeper stacks. Daniel’s 3-bet is standard at any stack depth. Flop The flop comes K♣ Q♠ 4♦ and Doug is still in the lead with his 3rd pair against Daniel’s 6-high. Daniel makes a very small 20% pot continuation bet of $1,900 dollars. Doug calls and the pot is now $11,200 going into the turn. Flop Analysis Daniel misses the flop, but this dry high-card board still gives him the overall range advantage as the preflop 3-better. There are also a number of draws Daniel could turn. With this in mind, I like the continuation bet. The downside to Daniel’s small sizing, however, is that he’s going to get very few folds. Doug has a no-brainer call with his pocket tens. Turn The turn is the A♥ and neither player improves on the board of K♣ Q♠ 4♦ A♥. Doug and Daniel both check and we head to the river. Turn Analysis With no pair or draw, Daniel is probably forced to check here 100% of the time. The ace might seem like a good card to bluff, but Doug would’ve called the small flop bet with a lot of Ace-high hands and Jack-Ten. With this in mind I don’t think its obvious that this card helps Daniel’s range more than Doug. Daniel does check and Doug once again has a clear decision checking back with his showdown value. River The 8♠ bricks off on the river, making the final board is K♣ Q♠ 4♦ A♥ 8♠. Doug still holds the lead with his 3rd pair. Daniel, however, makes a roughly ⅔ pot bet of $7,700, and after some deliberation Doug makes a frustrated fold. River Analysis Nice bluff from Daniel and sensible fold from Doug. Daniel’s line here seems pretty good. He’s at the very bottom of his range, which as a general rule means he should bluff. On top of that, he does have a credible number of value hands he could be representing here. Doug has a close decision with fourth pair but a fold is probably the right play. Doug still a sufficient number of higher pairs in his range that he could call with to keep Daniel from exploitatively bluffing, and in general Daniel has a pretty tight image. Final Thoughts We hope you’re enjoying all of the educational content Upswing is putting out for the Doug vs Dnegs grudge match. Expect to see a lot more free analysis coming out throughout the whole challenge. If you are looking for even more in-depth content, head over to Upswing and become a member of the Upswing Lab. As always, we would love to hear any comments or questions you might have regarding today’s post. What do you think of Doug’s tricky turn bet in hand 1 and what do you make of Daniel’s unconventional line in hand 2? We look forward to hearing from you, and until next time good luck at the tables! Note: Ready to join 6,000+ players currently upgrading their No Limit Hold’em skills? Crush your competition with the expert strategies you will learn inside the Upswing Lab training course. Learn more now!
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The Range C-Bet: 10 Spots to Continuation Bet 100% of the Time
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Poker strategy changes a lot over time. Before the poker boom, people generally played too passively. Then there was an over-correction by some players, who would continuation bet (c-bet) almost 100% on every flop. This is known by some as a “range c-bet” (shorthand for “c-betting with range”). While c-betting 100% in every situation is going too far, there are still some spots in which this high frequency c-bet strategy is not only acceptable, but optimal. In this article, I am going to share with you 10 spots in which you should leverage your range advantage by c-betting with every hand in your range. We’ll start with single raised pots, then move on to 3-bet pots. Keep in mind these are all heads-up spots. Multiway pots are a different beast and rarely warrant a 100% c-bet strategy. Let’s begin! Note: If you want to become a winner at Pot Limit Omaha fast, the brand new PLO Launch Pad course is for you. Learn more now! 5 Spots to Range C-Bet in Single Raised Pots Single raised pots are the most common type of pot that you will play (by a great deal). For this reason, applying an optimal c-betting strategy can have a huge positive impact on your overall winnings. Key note on sizing: For each of these spots, a small bet of roughly 1/3rd of the pot is the c-bet size you should use. Spot #1 – Dry King-High Boards In Position Example: You raise from the cutoff and the big blind calls. The flop comes K♥ 7♠ 2♦ and the big blind checks to you. These boards favor the preflop raiser due to a higher distribution of top pair+ hands in his range. When you add the fact that the preflop aggressor has an overpair (AA) and a top pair top kicker (AK) which the preflop caller cannot have, a very high-frequency c-bet is called for. Spot #2 – Double Broadway Boards Out Of Position from the Small Blind Example: You raise from the small blind and the big blind calls.The flop comes K♠ Q♥ 3♣. Double broadway boards offer a great deal of interactivity for the small blind. For this reason, he has a huge amount of equity in the pot. On top of that, the small blind also retains a nut advantage due to having more two-pairs, sets, and overpairs. After all, the big blind would likely 3-bet preflop with KK/QQ, and maybe even KQ. Spot #3 – High Paired Boards In Position Example: You raise from the hijack and the big blind calls. The flop comes Q♠ Q♣ A♣ and the big blind checks. The high paired boards interact very well with the range of the preflop raiser because they have a higher concentration of trips than the defender. This situation occurs because the defender will find himself either 3-betting a high percentage of those broadway hands or simply because the preflop raiser has a tight range to begin with. Thus, relatively speaking, he has more trips as a percentage of his whole range. Spot #4 – High Paired Boards Out Of Position from the Small Blind Example: You raise from the small blind and the big blind calls. The flop comes K♠ K♥ Q♣. Very similar to the previous situation, the out of position preflop raiser has a higher concentration of trips and better. On top of that, the defender has a lot of hands that have 0 interactivity with this board. For these two reasons, c-betting your entire range is the best course of action. Spot #5 – Very Low Paired Boards (33x-22x) Out of Position from the Small Blind Example: You raise from the small blind and the big blind calls. The flop comes 3♥ 2♥ 3♣. A different mixture of circumstances influences the optimal c-bet strategy in these scenarios. The preflop raiser doesn’t hold the nut advantage (the big blind will have more 3x/2x hands), but the rest of his range is much stronger compared to the preflop caller’s range. Consider that the preflop aggressor: Has more and stronger overpairs Typically has more and stronger top pairs Has stronger A-high hands. Has more and stronger middle pairs (depending on how high the high card is) Overall, the preflop raiser has a large equity advantage on these boards, which can be leveraged with a high frequency c-bet. Note: Learn step-by-step how to become the best player at the table when you join the Upswing Lab training course. Elite pros have been adding new content every week for the past four years, and you get all of it when you join. Learn more now! 5 Spots to Range C-Bet in 3-Bet Pots Even though 3-bet pots are not as frequent as single raised pots, they are much bigger pots and thus their effect on your overall win-rate is sizable. Making mistakes in them will be much larger than their single raised counter-parts. Key note on sizing: For each of these spots, a small bet of roughly 1/3rd of the pot is the c-bet size you should use. Spot #1 – King-High Boards In Position Example: The hijack raises and you 3-bet from the cutoff. The flop comes K♥ 8♠ 4♦ and the hijack checks to you. Just like in single raised pots, these boards favor the preflop 3-bettor due to a higher distribution of top pairs and better hands in her range. When you add the fact that the player who is in position has an overpair and top pair top kicker which the defender cannot have, a very high-frequency c-bet is called for. Spot #2 – Queen-High Boards In Position Example: The cutoff raises and you 3-bet from the button. The flop comes Q♠ 6♠ 2♦ and the cutoff checks to you. Even though the preflop 3-bettor doesn’t have a monopoly on top pair top kicker (like she does on K-high boards), she does have a higher proportion of them compared to the preflop caller. The 3-bettor also has a couple of overpairs (AA/KK) and a set (QQ) which the preflop caller cannot have — a recipe for range c-betting. Spot #3 – Triple Broadway Ace-High Boards In Position Example: The cutoff raises and you 3-bet from the button. The flop comes A♠ Q♥ J♠ and the cutoff checks to you. On these boards, the preflop 3-bettor has the biggest equity advantage that you can find in No Limit Hold’em on the flop (around 75% to 25%). She not only has this range advantage, but she also has a very large nut advantage, especially when playing from the button. Why is the advantage greater if she 3-bet preflop from the button? Because her 3-betting range from that position includes many more offsuit broadways (like QJ) that the other player cannot profitably call with preflop versus the 3-bet. B-betting very small with your whole range in these spots is the best strategy. Spot #4 – Double Broadway Boards Out of Position Example: The cutoff raises and you 3-bet from the small blind. The flop comes K♥ J♣ 2♠. These boards interact heavily with the small blind 3-bettor’s range. She retains a large nut advantage due to having more two-pairs, sets, and overpairs. She also has more top pairs than the preflop caller. Sounds like a spot for a 100% c-bet frequency! Spot #5 – High-Paired Boards Out of Position Example: These boards give the out of position 3-bettor more combinations of trips than her opponent. Plus, she has more strong pocket pairs. For these reasons, c-betting with the entire range for a small size is a good move in order to push the equity advantage. Wrapping Up There you go, 10 spots in which to abuse your range advantage. There are others out there — consider hunting for them on your own if you have access to a solver! That’s all for today. If you have any questions or feedback, please let me know in the comment section down below. Want to put your c-bet skills to the test? Take our “GTO” c-bet quiz now! Till’ next time, good luck, grinders! Note: Ready to join 6,000+ players currently upgrading their No Limit Hold’em skills? Crush your competition with the expert strategies you will learn inside the Upswing Lab training course. Learn more now!
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Jungleman Hits $825,635 Straight Flush vs Phil Ivey’s Quads (Analysis)
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Half-man, half-machine, Steve Austin was the original six-million dollar man. With superhuman strength and speed, he battled evil for the good of mankind. (I feel like I’m showing my age here!) In this hand, Daniel “Jungleman” Cates is a modern-day Steve Austin, his superhuman brain battling poker legend Phil Ivey for over six-million HK dollars (worth around $825,000 USD). The Jungleman discussed this crazy hand with myself and Dara O’Kearney in a Strategy Video animated by ‘The Chip Race’ podcast. Watch the video below or read on for a summary of the hand and Jungleman’s analysis. Editor’s note: This is Irish tournament pro David Lappin’s second article for Upswing Poker. Check out his first article Can She Fold a Full House Getting 7 to 1? (Analysis) and/or follow him on Twitter. Background The Tournament: Super High Stakes Cash Game in Macau Blinds: HK$10,000/HK$20,000 Stack Sizes: Everyone has 150BBs (HK$3,000,000) Note: $20,000 Hong Kong Dollars (HKD) is the equivalent of around $2,500, so the blinds are approximately $1,250/$2,500 in USD with $375,000 stacks. Preflop The action folds around to Jungleman on the Button. He opens 5♥ 3♥ to HK$50,000. Phil Ivey calls in the Small Blind. The Big Blind squeezes to HK$200,000. Jungleman and Phil both call. Preflop Analysis Jungleman’s low suited one-gapper is toward the bottom of his range — in other words, one of the worst hands he would raise — but it’s fine at this (quite deep) stack depth. Once Ivey calls and the the Big Blind squeezes to only 4x the original raise, Jungleman certainly has compelling pot odds to call in position. But whilst reflecting on the spot, Jungleman thinks that it might not be a +EV (expected value) call after all. In any case, a key note is that the Big Blind should be raising much bigger, around 5x-6x the original raise, with his range. Once Jungleman calls, Phil is getting 3 to 1 on a call. That price is so good that it probably keeps in with the vast majority of his range. Note: Want to know how to play every hand in every common preflop situation? Get instant access to extensive preflop charts and lessons (for cash games, heads-up and tournaments) when you join the Upswing Lab training course. Lock your seat now! The Advanced Solver Ranges for cash games — one of five sets of preflop charts in the Upswing Lab. Flop The Pot: HK$600,000 The Flop: A♥ 3♣ 4♦ The Action: Phil checks, the Big Blind bets HK$200,000. Jungleman and Phil both call. Flop Analysis With a backdoor straight-flush draw, a pair and a gutter, Jungleman has plenty of reasons to continue in the hand. The question is should he call or raise the 1/3 pot c-bet from the preflop squeezer. In-game he elects to call. But looking back on the hand, Jungleman considers the benefits of the raise. He explains how he and Phil have more 2-pair combos (suited A3, A4 and 34) and set combos (33 and 44) than the player in the big blind, which allows for an aggressive raising strategy. Dara O’Kearney weighs in, saying how he likes the call line. Turn The Pot: HK$1,200,000 The Turn: (A♥ 3♣ 4♦) 4♥ The Action: Phil checks, the Big Blind checks and Jungleman bets HK$800,000, Phil calls and the Big Blind folds. Turn Analysis The hand just got a whole lot more interesting! Phil and the Big Blind check, opening the door for Jungleman to turn his baby flush draw + bottom pair + gutshot straight draw into a bluff. This is actually a very cool spot for Jungleman to take a stab with what he calls ‘the best semi-bluff he can have’. Jungleman discusses the hands that he does not block, feeling them to be as important as the hands he blocks. For example, the Big Blind could have a pocket pair like Jacks, which will almost certainly fold to his 2/3 pot-sized bet. This bet also puts some pressure on Phil’s weaker Ace-X hands. As played, Phil calls and the Big Blind folds so we see a river heads up. Note: Jungleman also misspeaks in the video, mentioning how he blocks the 5♥ 4♥ when of course the 4♥ is on board. It’s nice to know that he is human despite all evidence to the contrary. River The Pot: HK$2,800,000 The River: (A♥ 3♣ 4♦) 4♥ 2♥ Stack-to-Pot Ratio: ~0.64:1 The Action: Phil checks, Jungleman bets HK$900,000, Phil shoves for HK$1,800,000 and Jungleman calls. River Analysis The improbable Steel Wheel gets there! Jungleman analyzes Phil’s own range and his own: Jungleman rejects the possibility of Phil having flushes on this exact runout and puts him on a mixture of near-nutted hands (4♠ 4♣, 3♠ 3♦, A♣ 4♣ and A♠ 4♠), strong hands (trips and straights like 6♣ 4♣, 6♠ 4♠, 5♣ 4♣ and maybe 5♠ 4♠) and weaker hands (Ax). Jungleman doesn’t have many bluffs, except for maybe 7♣ 6♣ or 7♦ 6♦. He figures that all the full houses and the quads will shove over a bet anyway. Therefore, he focuses on Phil’s straights, trips and Ax combos. Since there are way more Ax possible, he decides to target those with the smaller 1/3 pot sizing. Results Phil shows pocket fours for a flopped set, turned quads. Jungleman shows ‘The Steel Wheel’ and wins the HK$6,400,000 pot. Here’s a photo of the hand from Instagram: Wrapping Up Was this a cooler? Yes, of course it was. Jungleman could perhaps have folded to the squeeze preflop, but once he calls both preflop and on the flop, the rest of the hand is a fait d’accomplis. All the money was going in and there’s not a damn thing anybody could have done to prevent it. That doesn’t mean, however, that we can’t learn from one of the greatest poker minds explaining his thought process on every street. We can also reverse engineer Phil’s likely rationale given that the hand went to showdown: Phil Ivey called preflop with a small pocket pair. Out of position, he check-overcalls the flop. On the turn, Phil has quads (and what he assumes is a lock on the hand). He checks and again just calls Jungleman’s bet. In doing so, Phil is allowing Jungleman to hang himself — disguising his own hand strength while also giving Jungleman the chance to improve to a still inferior hand. On the river, Phil checks for the third time – maximizing the chance that Jungleman will bluff and perhaps assuming that he might value-bet thinner than he would call. What do you think of Jungleman’s call pre and on the flop? What do you think of Phil’s just-call on the flop and turn? Like Dara says in the video, it’s tough to contradict players of this caliber. Still, I want you to try. Let me know in the comments below. ‘The Chip Race’ is a fortnightly podcast sponsored by Unibet Poker. All episodes are available on Apple Music, SoundCloud and Stitcher. We also make a web-show called ‘The Lock-In’ and strategy videos like the one above. They are both available on our YouTube Channel. Note: Ready to join 6,000+ players currently upgrading their No Limit Hold’em skills? Crush your competition with the expert strategies you will learn inside the Upswing Lab training course. Learn more now!
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The 100 Most Valuable Poker Strategy Articles for 2021
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Hopefully you’ve taken advantage of all the great strategy content that’s available here at Upswing. But in case you’ve missed something, or want to double back and reinforce what you’ve learned, we’ve compiled our top strategy articles.  Each of them falls under one of the following categories (click to jump to that section): Whether you want to binge-read a dozen articles or call it a day after a single one, this list has the potential to be a valuable resource for improving your poker skills. Consider bookmarking or saving this page in case you want to reference it in the future. General poker strategy articles and guides What Separates Good Poker Players From The Best?Find out what distinguishes the very best poker players from the rest of the pack. 10 Quick Poker Tips That Will Help Your Game in 5 MinutesUpswing’s own Doug Polk shares some quick poker tips and tricks that will help you elevate your skills both live and online. Hand Combinations: The Secret Weapon Pros Use to Win More MoneyAn Upswing Poker high stakes analyst outlines a fundamental strategy that the pros use to maximize profit. 7 Things to Consider Before Becoming a Professional Poker PlayerDeciding to become a professional poker player is a big decision. This article outlines what you should think about before making that choice. Does Your Poker Career Feel Stuck? So Did This High Stakes Pro’sAre you stuck in a rut, struggling to make a decent profit playing poker? Doug Polk once felt the same way. 3-Step Poker Warm Up Routine That Will Improve Your ResultsBen Ward outlines how you can improve your results by embracing a warm up routine. A few big name pros cut in at the end to share their own personal poker session warm up routine. 10 Poker Infographics That Will Help Your GameBookmark these infographics so you can have them handy when you play. 5 Can’t-Miss Insights from an Online Cash Game JuggernautThese insights helped shape an elite player’s strategy. The Ultimate Guide to 6-Handed Poker | 6-Max Cash Game StrategyLearning how to dominate 6-Max poker is crucial to have success in online poker. Should I Play Cash Games or Tournaments?Breaking down the factors that go into choosing to play cash games or tournaments. Introduction to Pot Odds | How to Calculate Pot Odds in PokerPot odds are one of the most important poker concepts to learn.  Playing with Deep Stacks: Tips, Tricks, & Adjustments to Help You WinIf you find yourself playing in games with deep stacks, you need to familiarize yourself with this article. What Your Poker Strategy Should Look Like in 2021Exploring the differences between optimal and exploitative play. How to Crush Nits (10 Tactics That Win Against Tight Players)These tactics will help you run over weak players that fold too much. How to Beat the Guy Who Is Always Betting — Countering an Aggressive Poker StrategyFiguring out how to beat aggressive players is an extremely valuable skill. 7 Poker Tells You Should Look Out ForPoker tells are often over-hyped, but these seven are actually worth your attention. 5 Tips To Help You Break Out of Micro Stakes The goal of every player is to move up in stakes, and this article will help you do that. How to play specific hands Use These 3 Tips To Stop Spewing Chips with Pocket JacksLots of people hate Pocket Jacks. This article will make sure you’re not one of them. When Should You Set Mine with a Pocket Pair? These 5 Tips Will Clear Things Up.This article tells you exactly when you should look to set mine with pocket pairs. Suited Connectors: 5 Strategic Mistakes Poker Players Should AvoidEveryone loves suited connectors, but not everyone plays them correctly. This article will clear things up. Why 5♠ 4♠ is Better Than 9♠ 8♠ (And How That Should Impact Your Strategy)A fascinating look into why in many cases, lower suited connectors are more valuable than higher ones. 5 Mistakes to Avoid When Playing Pocket AcesDon’t get too tricky with Pocket Aces. Make sure that you don’t make one of these common mistakes. How to Play Ace-Queen Offsuit in Cash Games (Preflop Advice & 6 Postflop Tips)Learn the optimal way to play Ace-Queen offsuit in both preflop and postflop scenarios. How to Play Pocket Tens in Cash Games (Preflop Advice & 5 Postflop Tips)Pocket Tens are a hand that you should win a lot of money with. These tips will help. How to Play Jack-Ten Suited in Cash Games (Preflop Advice & 6 Postflop Tips)Jack-Ten suited a is beloved because it can make tons of strong hands. How to Play Pocket Nines in Cash Games (Preflop Advice & Postflop Tips)Learn the best way to play Pocket Nines before and after the flop. How to Play Ace-Ten Suited in Cash Games (Preflop Advice & Postflop Tips)Make sure you play Ace-Ten Suited like we recommend in this article. Pre-flop poker strategy 12 Pre-flop Mistakes to Avoid At All CostsAvoid these 12 pre-flop mistakes and your results will almost certainly skyrocket. 5 Tips for 4-Betting That Every Aspiring Pro Needs to KnowFind out when it is optimal to 4-bet pre-flop with these 5 tips for 4-betting. This Is Why (And How) You Need to 3-Bet More OftenAggressive pre-flop play can reap huge rewards in No Limit Hold’em. Here’s why and how you should add it to your game. 5 Tips to Stop Bleeding Chips from the Small BlindStop leaking chips from the small blind with these 6 effective pre-flop tips. How to Win When Your Opponent Straddles (3 Crucial Tips)For live players in particular, learning how to play with a straddle in effect is an essential poker skill. Should You Stop Cold-Calling in Cash Games?The definitive answer to whether or not you should ever just call a raise preflop instead of 3-betting. The Ultimate Guide to Squeezing in No Limit Hold’emEverything you need to know about the squeeze play. Limps in Poker: The Ultimate Guide to Crushing Open LimpersThese strategies will make you a limper’s worst nightmare. Big Blind Defense Strategy 101: Tournaments vs Cash GamesThe differences in defending the Big Blind in tournaments compared to cash games. The Starting Hands That Make the Most Money in Multiway PotsThese are the hands that you should look to play in multiway pots. Post-flop strategy articles Should You Ever Donk-Bet on The Flop in No Limit Hold’em?Learn the best time to lead out with a bet on the flop after defending a pre-flop raise. How to Avoid Getting Crushed After Defending with a Weak HandSometimes you must defend your blind with a relatively weak holding. This guide provides suggestions on how to minimize losses in those situations. How to Play a Flopped Straight in Cash Games (4+ Unique Spots)Flopping a straight is one of the best feelings in poker. Make sure you win the maximum. 8 Rules to Help You Choose the Perfect Bet SizeEverything you need to know about choosing the correct bet size in No-Limit Hold’em. How to Play Flopped Sets in 8 Common SituationsWin as much as possible whenever you flop a set with these eight strategies. Which Draws Should You Semi-Bluff With?This article explores how you should decide which draws you should bluff with. 3 Tips for Winning with Gutshot Straight DrawsMake sure you use these tips for playing your inside straight draws. 5 Tips for Playing Backdoor Flush & Straight DrawsBackdoor draws have a lot of value if you use the strategies that we recommend.  When Should You Slow-Play A Flopped Flush?Learn the factors that go into slow-playing a flopped flush. 10 Fundamental Tips for The Most Common Types of FlopsThere are 10 common types of flops. This article breaks down the differences in each one. Checking Flops with Overpairs: When Should You Do It?All of the world’s best players have this move in their arsenal.  5 Lucrative Check-Raising Strategies You Should Try TodayThese check-raising strategies will make your opponents fear betting into you. When to Attack After Your Opponent Checks Back (4 Tips for Probing)Learning when to probe is an essential skill for poker players. Want Your Bluffs to Work More Often? Try “Delaying” ThemLearn the secrets behind delayed c-betting. Multi-table tournament strategy articles 5 Poker Tournament Myths Way Too Many Players BelieveMany people claim these things, but there’s no truth to them. 8 Quick MTT Tips to Help You Top the LeaderboardThese tips will allow you to reach more final tables. The 4 Dumbest Career-Ending Mistakes Tournament Players MakeMake sure you don’t fall victim to one of these common mistakes. 4 Insights from 11 Years, 70,567 MTTs, and 6,304,190 Hands of PokerAn experienced tournament player gives four crucial insights into his approach. 4 Valuable Pieces of Poker Tournament Advice for BeginnersThis article is aimed at giving tournament beginners a better chance to succeed. Late Registering Online Tournaments: How Late Is Too Late?The definitive answer to when you should enter a tournament. How to Squeeze Max Value from Juicy Live TournamentsThese strategies will allow you to win as much as possible when playing against soft competition. €1,115,207 On The Line…Should She Fold A SET? (Analysis)Analysis of a wild hand where Maria Ho folded a set on the flop. How To Open-Raise In MTTs So The Big Blind Doesn’t Crush Your SoulThe raising strategy that you should adopt into your own game. How Poker Antes Should Change Your Tournament Raising StrategyThis is exactly how the presence of antes should impact your tournament strategy. How to Play Small Pocket Pairs in TournamentsSmall pocket pairs can cost you a lot of money in tournaments if you don’t play them correctly. Complete Guide to Tournament C-Betting StrategyEverything you need to know about c-betting in tournaments. How to Dominate Weak Tournament Competition Post-flopMake as much as possible against weak competition in tournaments. How to Negotiate Final Table Deals Like a ProConsider this before making a deal at the Final Table. How ICM Should Impact Your Play at Final TablesExactly how ICM impacts your decisions when you make the Final Table. Live poker strategy 8 Live Poker Tips That Will Put More Cash in Your PocketThese tips are especially useful for live players. How to Choose a Poker Room Where You Can Maximize Winnings (and Happiness)An all-inclusive guide to choosing which poker room to play in. 10 Things You MUST Know Playing In A Poker Home GameIf someone invites you to their home game, consider these things. 7 Multiway Tactics You Should Know Going Into 2020Live poker has a lot of multiway pots. These seven concepts will help you crush them. How to Adjust Your Strategy in Splashy Live GamesEverything you need to know about adjusting your strategy in loose games with a lot of weak players Advanced poker theory articles How Equity Realization Impacts Every Hand You’ll Ever PlayThis article covers a concept that impacts all of your poker decisions.  3 Spots You Should Actually Consider Minimum Defense Frequency (And 3 Spots You Shouldn’t)Minimum defense frequency is a concept that you always have to consider when you face a bet. The Only Two Valid Reasons to Bet in Poker (Every Other Reason is Wrong)If you bet for another reason, you’re making a mistake. How Equity Denial Influences (Almost) Every Decision & Your ResultsThis is a crucial concept to understand if you want to move up in stakes. 3 Hand Examples That Will Help You Overbet BetterOverbetting is a strategy that is used by all of the world’s best players. 3 Concepts That Should Shape Your Postflop Strategy in 2021 (Positional, Range, and Nut Advantage)These concepts are essential for every poker player to understand. How to Dominate Ace-High Flops in 3-Bet Pots (Deep Analysis)An advanced look into this common spot. This Poker “Cheat Code” Will Help You Win More HandsThe definitive answer to when you should lead into the aggressor on the turn. Hand analysis articles Rounders Analyzed: What Can We Learn from Mike McDermott & Teddy KGB?A strategic look into the hands that made Rounders great. When a WSOP Champ Called All-in with Ten-High (Analysis)This was one of the craziest hero calls of all-time. Record-Breaking $438,900 Pot on Live at the Bike (Analysis)Analysis of the biggest pot in Live at the Bike history. When a Poker A.I. Went Crazy with Five-Three Suited (Analysis)Why would a solver take such a crazy line with such a weak hand? Phil Hellmuth BLOWS UP After Semi-Bluff (Analysis)Phil Hellmuth lost his mind after this hand. BONKERS Bluff With $992,500 On The Line (Analysis of PokerGO’s Record-Breaking Pot)Analysis of an insane hand that settled for almost a million dollars. Bluff-Raising to $302,000 vs Patrik Antonius (Analysis)Doug Polk put in a huge bluff-raise in this hand vs. Patrik Antonius. Phil Hellmuth Loses It Over Liv Boeree’s Very Standard Play (Analysis)Liv Boeree made a standard play with her set, but Hellmuth still went crazy. High Stakes Players Collide in Record-Breaking $974,631 Pot (Analysis)The biggest No-Limit Hold’em pot in online poker history. Jungleman Hits $825,635 Straight Flush vs Phil Ivey’s Quads (Analysis)One of the biggest coolers in history happened between two of the world’s best players. The Most Unbelievable $135,657 Pot in Poker History (Berri Sweet vs LLinusLLove Analysis)There’s no doubt that this is one of the craziest hands you’ll ever see. The best poker quizzes [QUIZ] Can You Play Famous Poker Hands Like a Top Pro?You get the chance to play against some of the world’s best players in this quiz. [QUIZ] Can You Ace 10 Super Tough Poker Questions?These are our 10 hardest questions from all of our quizzes. No question was answered correctly by more than half of our audience. [QUIZ] Are You a Shark or a Fish at Live Poker Tables?If you play live poker, this quiz is made for you. [QUIZ] Can You Size Your Bets Like a Poker Boss?This quiz tests your ability to size your bets. [Quiz] Can You Beat $0.10/$0.25 on PokerStars?If you play Micro-stakes, you should take this quiz. [QUIZ] Can You Play These 10 Flush Draws Optimally?How well do you play your flush draws? Only 10% of Poker Players Will Ace This C-Betting QuizKnowing when to c-bet on the flop is one of the most important skills that a poker player can have. Check-Raise Strategy Quiz — Are Your Check-Raising Skills Razor Sharp?Do you know how to check-raise like an end boss? [QUIZ] Are You a Double Barrelin’ Cowboy at the Poker Table?This quiz tests your ability to bet the turn after betting the flop. Tournament Poker Quiz — How Much Do You Actually Know About MTT Strategy?Test your tournament poker skills with this quiz. Advanced poker strategy training courses Postflop Game Plan ($7)Make use of this foundational, multi-media guide that shows when and how to categorize poker hands profitably. The Upswing LabThis No Limit Hold’em training course is what our world-class team of coaches would teach their younger selves, if they could send information back in time. Updated monthly with a new strategy module, and once a week with a new Play & Explain video. Winning Poker TournamentsExtensive training course for serious tournament poker players. Learn the strategy Nick Petrangelo uses to crush the world’s toughest events and win millions of dollars. Advanced Cash Game StrategyImmediately improve your strategy with guidance from a cash game millionaire. Discover cutting-edge strategies taught by legendary pro Alex “Kanu7” Miller. Advanced PLO MasteryAdvanced PLO Mastery is a comprehensive & digestible training course that will help you demolish Pot Limit Omaha games and become an end boss. Advanced Heads-Up MasteryJoin Doug Polk as he shows you step-by-step how he mastered HUNL play. The advanced poker tips and strategies in this course will help much more than your heads-up game because understanding wide range situations apply to all forms of poker. Mastering Mixed GamesLearn how to crush the softest games available as Jake Abdalla teaches you through his winning strategy for Omaha 8, Stud, Stud 8, Razz, and Triple Draw. High Stakes MTT SessionsJoin Nick Petrangelo as he walks you through dozens of his real-life sessions and shares his battle-tested tactics. Short Deck CourseThis comprehensive course by Kane Kalas will help you tap into big potential win-rates and cutting-edge strategies for this relatively unsolved and misunderstood game. PLO MatrixA tool that shows you the optimal way to play any preflop hand in Pot Limit Omaha. Based on GTO preflop ranges from state of the art solvers. Which Course is Right For You?Take this quick quiz to find out which course is best for your poker playing needs, or keep scrolling for a breakdown of each course. Wrap-Up We release new poker strategy articles twice per week here on Upswing. Sign up for our email list here to receive articles in your inbox whenever they go live (you’ll get some pre-flop charts as a bonus). Alternatively, you can check for updates on our main poker tips, quizzes, and guides page. Note: Learn step-by-step how to become the best player at the table when you join the Upswing Lab training course. Elite pros have been adding new content every week for the past four years, and you get all of it when you join. Learn more now!  
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