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Banging it Out in the Blinds

Adapting to an opponent’s tendencies

by Roy Cooke |  Published: Feb 01, 2011


Most poker books encourage a rigid strategy. Few discuss constantly adapting your play to your opponents’ tendencies. One of the significant differences between the best players and the also-rans is their ability to adapt well to the individual situations that they face. By adjusting their strategy based on their excellent hand-reading skills and superior knowledge of their opponents’ tendencies, they create edges that other players just don’t perceive. That said, those dominating skills require a lot of knowledge and focus. I was in the Bellagio cardroom early; the $30-$60 limit hold’em game I was playing in had not gotten warmed up yet, and the game was pretty solid. I had just posted the big blind; the field had folded to an aggressive local pro in the small blind, and he raised me. Many players don’t like to chop the blinds, believing that they are giving up an important edge. Others ...

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