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Why Bet?

by Roy Cooke |  Published: Oct 15, 2014

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“There are only two reasons to bet,” goes the conventional wisdom. “You either bet to make a worse hand call or a better hand fold.” And, while both those things make sense, there are more reasons to bet than just those two. Many novice players bet just because they think they have the best hand. And, while it’s obvious when you’re betting for value, it’s helpful to have the best hand; it’s an incomplete reason to bet. Value bets should be executed only when they show positive expected value (+EV) against your opponents’ calling range. The equation includes incorporating all assumptions of risk you take by betting. These risk-assumptions include getting raised, raise-bluffed, getting called by a better hand, future scenarios both in the current hand and future hands, and so on. In order to correctly evaluate the expected value of any play, you should incorporate all possible scenarios into ...


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