The Most Valuable Poker Game

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Poker Card Game


Poker is a family of card games in which players wager over which hand is best according to that specific game's rules in ways similar to these rankings. While the earliest known form of the game was played with just 20 cards, today it is usually played with a standard deck, although countries where short packs are common, may play with 32, 40 or 48 cards .  Thus poker games vary in deck configuration, the number of cards in play, the number dealt face up or face down, and the number shared by all players, but all have rules that involve one or more rounds of  betting.


CARD VALUES/SCORING

While Poker is played in innumerable forms, a player who understands the values of the Poker hands and the principles of betting can play without difficulty in any type of Poker game. Except in a few versions of the game, a Poker hand consists of five cards. The various combinations of Poker hands rank from five of a kind (the highest) to no pair or nothing (the lowest):


Five of a Kind – This is the highest possible hand and can occur only in games where at least one card is wild, such as a joker, the two one-eyed jacks, or the four deuces. Examples of five of a kind would be four 10s and a wild card or two queens and three wild cards.


Straight Flush – This is the highest possible hand when only the standard pack is used, and there are no wild cards. A straight flush consists of five cards of the same suit in sequence, such as 10, 9, 8, 7, 6 of hearts. The highest-ranking straight flush is the A, K, Q, J, and 10 of one suit, and this combination has a special name: a royal flush or a royal straight flush. The odds on being dealt this hand are 1 in almost 650,000.


Four of a Kind – This is the next highest hand, and it ranks just below a straight flush. An example is four aces or four 3s. It does not matter what the fifth, unmatched card is.


Full House – This colorful hand is made up of three cards of one rank and two cards of another rank, such as three 8s and two 4s, or three aces and two 6s.


Flush – Five cards, all of the same suit, but not all in sequence, is a flush. An example is Q, 10, 7, 6, and 2 of clubs.


One Pair – This frequent combination contains just one pair with the other three cards being of different rank. An example is 10, 10, K, 4, 3. Two Pairs – This hand contains a pair of one rank and another pair of a different rank, plus any fifth card of a different rank, such as Q, Q, 7, 7, 4.  Straight – Five cards in sequence, but not all of the same suit is a straight. An example is 9♥, 8♣, 7♠, 6♦, 5♥.


Three of a Kind – This combination contains three cards of the same rank, and the other two cards each of a different rank, such as three jacks, a seven, and a four.


No Pair – This very common hand contains "nothing." None of the five cards pair up, nor are all five cards of the same suit or consecutive in rank. When more than one player has no pair, the hands are rated by the highest card each hand contains, so that an ace-high hand beats a king-high hand, and so on

Two hands that are identical, card for card, are tied since the suits have no relative rank in Poker. In such a case, the tied players split the pot. Note that if two hands contain the same high pair, then the ranking of the next card in the hands determines which one wins. For example: 9, 9, 7, 4, 2 beats 9, 9, 5, 3, 2. Likewise, two hands that have identical pairs would be decided by the fifth card. For example: Q, Q, 6, 6, J beats Q, Q, 6, 6, 10.

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HOW TO WIN AT POKER | 5 EASY STEPS

#1. PLAY FEWER POKER HANDS

This is a simple yet highly effective poker strategy. It definitely falls in line with our poker rules for winning.


When you first start playing in poker tournaments, you tend to play a lot of poker hands because you want to see a lot of flops. You want to see a lot of flops because you view it as fun. Then it becomes like a bad golfer hitting a great shot. They don’t think about shooting 115 in 18 holes. They think about that one approach shot that was right on the money. That’s what keeps them coming back.


In poker, you might have played J9-off despite the hand being 4-bet pre-flop and then flopped a straight. Won a huge pot there, which made you think you were a great poker player, or that the game was easy. You would be wrong on both accounts. You did everything wrong and the game isn’t easy.


Sorry for being harsh, but that’s how you get better. I’ll start by saying you should never call a pre-flop 4-bet with J9-off. I’ll continue by saying that there is a very easy way to get a lot better at this game, which is to play fewer poker hands.


You probably haven’t noticed, but the best poker players in poker tournaments and other poker games are tight players. This means they play fewer poker hands than the majority of the field. Always remember this simple concept: The pot is a dangerous place to be in Texas Hold’em poker tournaments. This means that you should only be getting involved with strong hands or when you have an opportunistic situation.


Let’s begin with strong hands. The range of hands you play should depend on your position. If you’re in early position, you should only play AA, KK, QQ, and AK. Maybe AQ if you’re a strong player. I’m going with poker basics because I’m assuming you’re a beginner. In other words, I’m trying to simplify the game for you while also giving you poker tips to win.


You want to play the aforementioned hands in any position, and you want to play them aggressively. If you’re in middle or late position, then I would recommend raising (not limping) with the following hands…

#2. BLUFF CORRECTLY

Three important points here.


One, semi-bluffing is good. You can’t always check a flush draw to see if you get there. You’re losing tons of value! In most cases, either your opponent will fold or you will hit your flush. I’m not saying that you will usually hit your flush. You will only hit your flush 36% of the time when four to the flush on the flop. I don’t know the numbers on how often your opponent will fold.


Nobody does. But I do know that the amount of chips you accumulate by getting your opponent to fold combined with the amount of chips you win when you get called and hit your flush is likely to be more than the chips you earn by checking and seeing if you get there. There will certainly be times where you are called and don’t get there.


This is why so many people are afraid to pull the trigger. But in order to live in poker games, you can’t be afraid to die. This is how to win at poker.


Two, I would recommend almost always putting in a continuation bet or check-raising when heads-up. The check-raise is an incredibly powerful bluff. Even if you’re wrong, you will find out the strength of your opponent’s hand with absolute certainty.


An opponent is NEVER going to call a check-raise with a marginal hand. Well, maybe if they’re a donkey. There are some donkeys out there. If you do get called on a check-raise-bluff, hit the brakes. Sometimes how to win at poker relates to aggression until resistance.


Three, if you’re going to barrel on the river, then I highly recommend that your story makes sense. Let’s say your opponent raised pre-flop, bet big on the flop, and bet big on the turn. There were two hearts on the flop, but you had 6s 6d with no six anywhere on the board. Then a heart hits the river.


how to win at poker - 6s6d

Since your opponent kept coming after you, and since he began raising pre-flop, you can safely assume he has an overpair or top pair. He bet for value pre-flop, and he has been trying to get rid of you ever since, especially after seeing two hearts on the flop. Now that a heart hit the river, you can bluff to represent the flush. You better make sure it’s a big enough amount to scare him away.


If you get away with this bluff, you’re probably wondering if you should show it. You want to show it, but that’s Ego, and it could cost you. It’s hard to make winning hands in Texas Hold’em poker tournaments. If you show that bluff, then you need to hit cards going forward because you just lost respect from everyone at the table. I don’t recommend relying on the cards.


If you fold without showing the bluff, then you got away with it AND the players at the table still respect you because they think you had the flush. If someone asks you if you had the flush, don’t say, “Yes” or “No.” Say, “I can’t answer that.” Always keep them guessing.


#3. BET OUT ON MONSTERS

I play a lot of poker. I have seen it all. At least most of it. I can tell you that if you check a monster on the flop, your opponent is going to be more suspicious than if you bet out on the flop. If you bet out with a monster on the flop, a good poker player is going to put you on a marginal or good hand that you’re trying to protect.


how to win at poker - bet out

They are not going to put you on a monster. This is why you should bet out monsters. Your opponents usually won’t believe you, which will lead to them calling more often and you getting more value. This is how to win at poker.


#4. NOT SURE? FOLD!

I know you want to see what your opponent is holding. I also know that you don’t want to be bluffed in front of everyone at the table. Know this, though. The person showing the bluff is the idiot. He or she is giving away information for the sake of Ego. Even if it doesn’t cost that player during this sessions, it will cost them in the future. Your job is simple. Forget Ego and remind yourself that if you’re not sure, fold. This is how you win at poker: Fold more often!


how to win at poker - player folding

Also in regards to embarrassment and your opponent showing a bluff, think about how many times you made the correct laydown against that player and he mucked his cards. He will show you when he’s correct, but he will not show you when you are correct. And you are correct more often than not if you lean toward folding. I’ll put this as simply as possible: You will know when it’s the right time to call.


#5. ATTACK EVERY SINGLE TIME IN THIS SPOT

If you have three or more opponents, don’t bet out unless holding strength. If you have 1-2 opponents and they’re checking, you should almost always bet. When you sense weakness, you need to attack. This how to win at poker. Your opponents will gain respect for you and stay out of your way more often.


You might have noticed that I wrote ‘almost always.’ There is one instance when you don’t want to continue being aggressive in this manner. It’s when you have been playing against these same players for hours and they have picked up on your aggression. I can guarantee you that at least one of them has been waiting to set the trap for you. But this is where you change gears. And changing gears and quickly adapting is also how to win at poker.


If you sense something is up because one of your opponents flatted you, check it back. This is going to frustrate them. They can’t beat you when weak, and that can’t extract chips from you when strong. You might get them on tilt. Let’s add another how to win at poker: Get your opponents on tilt by not falling for their trickery.

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Final Thoughts


To review how to win at poker, play fewer poker hands pre-flop, bluff correctly, bet out more often with monsters, fold if you’re not sure, and attack whenever you sense weakness. For the last one, I’m going to change it to: Attack whenever you smell blood. That comes across much better because it’s more shark-like. Be the shark.

HOW TO WIN AT POKER – FAQS

Q: What are the ways to win at poker?

A: Be patient, read betting patterns of your opponents, fold whenever you’re not sure, eliminate Ego and Greed, minimize risk off the felt in every way possible.

Q: What is the object of the game of poker?

A: In a cash game, it’s to leave with more chips than you started with. In a poker tournament, it’s to come in the money enough times that you’re profitable.

Q: How do I beat my friends at poker?

A: Read these poker articles, read/listen to as many poker books as possible and practice. Next poker night, look out.

Q: What are good ways to bluff in poker?

A: It depends on your personality and what you’re comfortable with. For example, the majority of my bluffs are small to medium sized bets on the flop and turn, nothing big.

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