"If you would not be forgotten as soon as you are dead, either write something worth reading or do things worth writing." – Benjamin Franklin
Curiosities of Poker!
Have been a recent victim of the TV Series of High Stakes Poker (HSP).
Having wrapped up with exams just a few days back, I’ve some time to twiddle my fingers! So I go to YouTube and start watching various episodes of HSP – lots of fun, but it’s quite interesting to predict what move the player is about to make next!
Anyway, here’s a few curiosities I’ve come across.
1) Pocket Pairs
A few days into HSP made me realise – it’s something more than co-incidence that if one player gets a pocket pair, there IS (most of the time) at least another player who has pocket pairs! Mathematically, this doesn’t make sense. But circumstantial evidence – go watch HSP videos and you’ll know what I mean.
2) K and J (off suite)
Something I have realised is K and J (off suite) are the WORST hand to have. I’m going to explain, but:
tl;dr (Too Long Didn’t Read) : DON’T PLAY BIG IF YOU GET THIS HAND.
My explanation is this :
a) KJ are high numbers, players tend to make a high pre-flop raise.
b) Any player who calls that pre-flop WILL have a KT or better.
c) Now, comes the first flop. Consider K49 (so players don’t get any chance of straight or any other pair, this is the best flop one could expect with KJ. Also K4Q would remove all advantage the player may have from KJ, hence I am not considering that flop).
d) Now the position of the player comes into account.
i) Early play – The player will bet high. Here, either the other player –
folds – the player gets a very small pot.
calls – chance the other player may have a K as well, and a better second card considering he called pre-flop.
re-raises – this means death for KJ. Other player most surely has a K AND a higher second card.
ii) Late play – Another player WILL raise (considering he has called pre-flop) and the player with KJ will have to fold (thinking that the other player has a higher K, any good player would fold).
In rare circumstances, one may get KJ and KQT9 or similar on the flop looking towards a straight. My argument here, is that there is a chance for other players to get A as much and that A would lead to a higher straight than K.
e) If looking for a straight, consider this :
K has only A on the upper side, hence one side which is limited for the straight.
Conside QT or QJ both have 2+ on either side, a higher probability for a straight in the flop, or eventually by the river.
Hence, KJ is a very unlucky hand to have. You either Win Small or Lose Big.
3) Start position for Hand
This bit is slightly easier and logical to follow.
This is my rough guide for which card to play or fold depending on how far you are from the dealer.
EARLY – Here, the point is that one would only put a raise if he has [HIGH PAIRS], [HIGH CARDS CLOSE TO EACH OTHER] – logic : if you bet with small cards, and someone raises, well you lose your bet, because any player would not call a raise with small cards.
MEDIUM – Here, you play a balance. You ADD these cards to the above : [HIGHER UNSUITED], [MIDDLE PAIRS] and [CARDS OF THE SAME SUIT] – logic : you don’t yet know what the late players are going to bet, so you don’t raise, play safer.
LATE – Here, you’re ending the round. So you better raise if you have even a 78 suited [CARDS CLOSE TO EACH OTHER], 33 [LOWER PAIRS] or A7 [ACE+SMALLER CARD], but not lower, if the round is already raised – logic : if the pre-flop raise isn’t very high, you can be sure you may have a high chance of winning this.
It’s all your judgement.
4) NO emotions
No definite hand is lucky or unlucky for you. It’s all a game of probability and sense. Gut feelings do NOT work here.
I’ll update this post if I do get some more tips/hints. Watch this space for more!