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PL/NL Texas Hold'em >> Small Stakes

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Dan Bitel
Carpal \'Tunnel


Reged: 05/26/05
Posts: 11164
Loc: Bork! Bork! Bork!
Taking stealing the blinds to next level
      #6073737 - 06/05/06 07:38 AM

OK, First, if you haven't already, read Pokey's Brilliant post on blind stealing, read it now.

Secondly, what I'm about to write is not for every1. Unlike blind stealing, you don't HAVE to do this to play optimal poker. I know that a lot of good players/respected posters do this already and some don't like it at all.

OK, what you have to realise is quite how +EV blind stealing is. Check you BB/100 when blind stealing in PT. I'm sure that for most of you it's bigger than 60 PTBB/100, now that a hell of a lot of $$$$!!!! The reason for this is in a way, NLTH is a badly structured game in the way that when you play without antes, the blinds are at such a disadvantage, they have to post their blind without even seeing their hand. Now considering that a good TAG player will normally only play about 20% of their hands, this means that on the BB , they're losing 4BB every 5 hands, that they normally wouldn't put in.

OK, so lets say you're on the button and MP limps to you. You have K 2 , what should you normally do? Well folding certainly doesn't look too bad. We've got a poor hand after all. What do I think you should do? RAISE THAT [censored]!!!

Reasons:

1) now, yourblind steal doen't even look like a blind steal, so it's less likely the blinds will see it as that and play back at you.

2) It's scary the amount of times that I've seen people limp/fold preflop, even from CO. It kinda baffles me realy!! What kind of hand can they have?

3) What do you opponents limp with? This is a very important consideration. Normally, either trash/SC/PP. These hands miss the flop very often. So even if you do get called, they won't continue after your flop cbet very often.

4) When we take it down preflop, we now win 2.5BB. Thats over 100PTBB/100.....freakdaddy, we'll catch you yet

5) We'll get paid off more on our big hands.

6) Our oppponents are plays sub-optimally by open limping. So by raising, we are punishing that mistake.


Next, lets think about what will happen after we make this play a few times. Well, either you're at a table of mega mega unobservant fish and you just keep raking in the money from their limps. Or maybe you're sitting at a table of just mega unobservant fish, and they realise what you're doing and they stop limping. Well, is this a good thing or a bad thing? I think in a way, its a VERY good thing. It means 1) they will be folding more, so you can steal the blinds more, which as we've already discussed is $$$$$$. 2) They will be raising more and will be out of their comfort zone. This means they will usually make even bigger mistakes than usual as they try to adjust

Next, what hands should you be doing this with? After how many limpers? After what sort of limpers.

IMO, you should do it with your normal blind stealing range, so SC, unsuited connectors, suited 1 gappers, Axs, Kxs, low PP etc etc.

No. of limpers: normally 1 or 2, but sometimes more if conditions allow

The type of limpers: the ones that like to fold, eihter preflop or 2 cbets.

Lastly, the problems with this:

1) If you do this too often, you'll find that you open up your game tooo much and start raising poor hands OOP too and get into trouble.

2) watch out for LRR

3) You'll be put in a lot more marginal situations post-flop, so you need to make sure your reasing skills are goot.


IMO, playing a huge range of hands from the button after 0 or 1 (and even 2 limpers), raising them all and then from all other positions just play pairs/big aces/KQ is a simpleish but very profitable strategy


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finnegan
journeyman


Reged: 05/21/05
Posts: 83
Re: Taking stealing the blinds to next level [Re: Dan Bitel]
      #6073779 - 06/05/06 07:55 AM

Good post.
I would NOT do this with >2 limpers with marginal hands ie unsuited connectors. For example say you have 89o w/ 3 limpers, you raise to 6xBB, you get two calls, and then have to make a scary cbet on a coordinated board. The problem is you've put a lot in the pot to take it down (1.5x a normal blind steal), and are playing against more people who have more invested in the pot making them more likely to float and hope you give up on the turn UI.


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mwatkins
member


Reged: 01/16/06
Posts: 116
Re: Taking stealing the blinds to next level [Re: finnegan]
      #6073829 - 06/05/06 08:11 AM

I find that after a while you start to see the people who like to float your c-bet, but this is difficult to do oop, and some people who are just waiting for you to c-bet when they hit a strong hand so that they can check raise. So if you are an observant blind stealer and you bear in mind the people who will do this, then you have nothing to worry about.

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Heine
addict


Reged: 09/28/05
Posts: 684
Loc: Midland
Re: Taking stealing the blinds to next level [Re: finnegan]
      #6073832 - 06/05/06 08:13 AM

good post dbitel, i'll try to do this more often.

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Jouster777
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 11/23/05
Posts: 1825
Loc: LAG right, nit left
Re: Taking stealing the blinds to next level [Re: Dan Bitel]
      #6073875 - 06/05/06 08:22 AM

Quote:

5) We'll get paid off more on our big hands.




This is a big addition to the BB/100 that isn't quantifiable. Nothing worse than being so card dead you can't even steal blinds...kills you when you finally do get something big.

Which brings up the point...just how loose do you get with blind steals? AND how does it change CO, BTN, CO + 1 limper, BTN + 1 limper?


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ChipStorm
Village FR Nit


Reged: 10/11/04
Posts: 2584
Loc: Poker For Dogs
Re: Taking stealing the blinds to next level [Re: Dan Bitel]
      #6073887 - 06/05/06 08:24 AM

Good post dbitel. After reading Pokey's post a couple of months ago, I have started doing exactly what you're suggesting, especially with just one limper to me, and even from CO if my stats on BTN/blinds are rockish. Unquestionably ++EV.

You can also get away with raising less than normal (to 5BB or so), even as far down as a minraise. Of course, obvious caveat applies here, have to mix up the raises sufficiently that they don't give away your hand strength.


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matv
old hand


Reged: 02/07/06
Posts: 848
Loc: going to the felt with overpai...
Re: Taking stealing the blinds to next level [Re: ChipStorm]
      #6073966 - 06/05/06 08:46 AM

ive been doing this for since a very early stages of becoming a winning player. i feel i am much tighter than most ppl(including 2+2ers) in bad position but i make up for it in position, it has been the key to my strategy since ive been a winning player it should work for other ppl aswell.

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RUSE
journeyman


Reged: 08/29/04
Posts: 53
Re: Taking stealing the blinds to next level [Re: ChipStorm]
      #6073981 - 06/05/06 08:50 AM

Same here; Pokey's was a great post, and it is good to see some elaboration on it. I've tried to implement it myself and I'm afraid my (relatively stable) base of opponents have begun to view me as somewhat of a maniac. I've been finetuning since then; alternating active rounds of stealing with inactive ones, now and again limp-reraising with AA-JJ which I had all but abandoned before b/c it was sooo obvious but now has regained worth making me more difficult to read, sometimes postponing the continuation bet until the turn, etc.

In my view, especially the "squeeze play" with limpers in front sets you up to make some handsome money postflop (if it ever gets that far). Nice post!

BTW I havent been posting here much but that is b/c I sometimes float in here and feel like you guys can do without my specific input. Theoretical posts like these I love to read, though, and just wanted to say that.


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DonkBluffer
veteran


Reged: 08/26/05
Posts: 1597
Re: Taking stealing the blinds to next level [Re: matv]
      #6074075 - 06/05/06 09:15 AM

Quote:

ive been doing this for since a very early stages of becoming a winning player. i feel i am much tighter than most ppl(including 2+2ers) in bad position but i make up for it in position, it has been the key to my strategy since ive been a winning player it should work for other ppl aswell.



Yeah, the more i play, the more I realize how important position is. OOP SUCKS!

I already do what dbitel suggests. My PFR% OTB is almost as high as my VPIP OTB. The strength of this move is that people limp/fold way too often. For example, a 35/15 player limps in MP. Unless he limps/reraises his good hands, which is very rare, he almost certainly has a mediocre hand at best, and he will fold a lot here.


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matv
old hand


Reged: 02/07/06
Posts: 848
Loc: going to the felt with overpai...
Re: Taking stealing the blinds to next level [Re: DonkBluffer]
      #6074094 - 06/05/06 09:19 AM

yep or u get it heads up and take it down a bit bigger pot on the flop

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