The Two Ways To Win Pots. One of the most basic lessons a poker player can learn is the difference between winning a hand at showdown and winning pots by simply seeing everyone else fold and give it to you.
If everyone always played to the end, like for instance a poker game where no betting was involved and therefore there would be no reason to ever fold, then the game would be entirely about how strong a hand you have.
When you introduce betting and folding into the mix, then it becomes less about your hand strength, and more about your betting, and the more folding you see, the more it becomes about poker betting strategies.
Most poker players have some sort of intuitive sense of all this, but they don’t think about this enough, and generally will just play off the cuff so to speak, without really thinking much about the math that should be behind it.
Now we don’t really have the time to do a lot of calculating at the table here, even though we do have the help of poker software programs to make this all easier for us, but we do need a better sense of what we’re doing than we always bet here or we bet a lot against players we sense are weaker.
How Often They Go All The Way
The poker stat we want to be looking at the most here is how often a poker player shows down hands. We’re not even that concerned about what happens when they do, just how often they do it, as this will tell us how often they don’t, in other words how often they give up on hands and will be just giving the pot to us unchallenged.
In today’s poker, this is where most of the opportunities will lie, as players tend not to show down poker hands often enough for their own good, in other words, they tend to fold too much and that’s a mistake we’re going to need to take advantage of if we are to be successful.
From there, we can now look at their folding tendencies at each street, meaning on the flop, turn, and river. Some US online poker players may fold a lot on the flop for instance but when they don’t, they tend to be willing to go all the way, and in these cases we may want to back off if we can’t get them to fold on the flop.
Taking Them Down and Grabbing Pots
So we need to look at the overall profitability of looking to take down hands against them, and then see if there are any particular instances in their patters that may merit special regard. If you just looked at their overall tendencies though to show down then that alone will give you a real leg up.
Remember that one’s hand only matters if the cards get shown down, and very often they do not, and in these cases it doesn’t matter what you have, or what they had, it’s just all about who is more aggressive. The more you understand this, the better you will do at the tables.
This does not mean that we always want to play aggressive though, but we certainly want to when it’s in our favor to, and this is why we need to pay close attention to the showdown frequencies of our opponents.