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How to Begin a Session — Part III

Assess each player’s current state of mind

by Barry Tanenbaum |  Published: Nov 12, 2010


In Part II of this series, I continued my discussion of things that you should do when you start a session. We looked at the following list: 1. Don’t play right away. 2. Look for negative inferences. 3. Assess each player’s current state of mind. 4. Determine your table position. 5. Take fewer chances. 6. At no-limit, buy in for the minimum. 7. If possible, establish a positive image. 8. Decide which players to exploit and which to avoid. That column covered point No. 2 — look for negative inferences. (That column and all of my columns are available at We now will continue by looking at point No. 3: state of mind. Specifically, your objective is to assess the state of mind of each player. I used to work with computers. One of the nice things about my job was that computers are deterministic devices: Given the same ...

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