Sunday, May 15, 2011

Kings and Things in Texas Holdem

Kings and Things in Texas Holdem   Home Best online poker games on EnglishDutchFrenchGermanItalianSpanish Search this site: HomeNewsPoker RoomsPoker RulesPoker Tips  Holdem RulesHoldem StrategyHoldem TipsPoker SchoolLive Tournaments  Kings and Things in Texas Holdem Published by Brian Cherry on Sep 22, 2010 Kong image/jpeg iconKing_Kong.jpg

Today’s poker tips are about playing a pair of Kings from the early position in live poker and online poker. Most poker players have had this happen to them. They are seated in the early position during a game of Texas holdem, and are dealt a pair of Kings. The first thing you should do if this happens during live poker is suppress the smile of self satisfaction that will no doubt try to creep across your face. If you are playing online poker, feel free to celebrate. Pump your fist, give yourself a high five, do a wrestling style crotch chop, it doesn’t matter, the rest of the poker players at the Texas holdem table can’t see you. So your free of prying eyes looking for tells. The second thing you should do is heed the copious number of poker tips that talk about big preflop pairs, and realize that in Texas holdem a pair of kings is not the hand to try to slow play the rest of the poker players at your table with. This truth from the poker tips bible holds true for poker players engaging in live poker or online poker.

So you are seated in your early position with your pair of Kings, and put in an opening bet, perhaps five times the big blind. You haven’t exactly gone all-in, but your aggressive action from a dubious position should convey the point to rest of the poker players at the table that you don’t fear a raise from behind you. In most cases you would be expecting the rest of your Texa holdem competition to fold, but the guy in the last chair raises. What do you do?

This is a tough situation because in Texas holdem, a preflop pair of kings is almost the best hand you can have. The only thing better is a pair of aces. The odds that the other Texas holdem player is holding the other pair of kings are 110 to 1. The odds that he has a pair of aces is 220 to 1. The odds that he is bluffing is going to vary. If you are playing live poker, while it is still likely he is bluffing from a power position, the stereotype of live poker players says it is possible he is holding either a pair of kings or a pair of aces. If you are playing online poker, the stereotype of these poker players is that they are more aggressive. There are also other factors to consider in this Texas holdem game. The likelihood of a bluff goes up if you are in a low limit game, and there is less on the line. The more money that is involved, the lower the chances that the other poker players will be lying about their hand in the face of your aggressive, out of place bets. With all that said, all the gamesmanship of poker aside, the odds are still 220 to 1 that your opponent is holding a pair of aces. From a poker tips standpoint, it is at least worth your time to see the flop instead of folding some big cards to positional aggression. It may also be worth it to test his resolve and try to drive them out of the hand by re-raising your opponent. If they are not bluffing, it is likely that they are holding a pair of queens or jacks and are trying to scare you out of the hand.

Playing the odds means you will occasionally lose on this gambit, and the person you are challenging will actually be holding those two aces. In the long run, you will win far more often then you lose in this situation.

That is the poker tips for the day.

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