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Pot Control and Free Cards

by Steve Zolotow |  Published: Jul 08, 2015


The concepts of pot control and not allowing your opponents to get free cards may be seen as opposite sides of the same problem. The basic idea of pot control is to avoid losing a big pot with a good, but not great hand. The idea of not giving a free card is that you must charge your opponent to draw to a hand that might beat you or get him to fold so some long shot doesn’t show up to beat you. There is a huge dilemma here. If you check for pot control, you’re giving your opponent a free card. If you bet to prevent free cards, you are creating a large pot, which you may not win. Let’s analyze a common type of situation from several angles. Both you and your opponent have very deep stacks, say 200 big blinds, or $2,000, in a $5-$10 no-limit hold’em ...

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