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Better Continuation Betting

 
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MessagePosté le: Mer 14 Oct - 20:47 (2009)    Sujet du message: Better Continuation Betting Répondre en citant

Better Continuation Betting in No Limit PokerLearn all about the continuation bet with this article and find out how you can increase your poker win rate.With the right no limit poker strategy, it's possible to make a lot of money with online poker. Continuation bets are one of the most commonly misused bets in Texas Holdem but that's ok; we've got you covered.
If you’re anything like me, you already know how easy it is to fall into a predictable c-betting routine in no limit poker. You make a raise at one of your tables, bet no matter what the flop is and then give up if you get any trouble from your opponents. The only time you don’t give up is when you hit a hand. Yea, predictable is the word all right.

But before we get any further, let’s define the word "continuation bet."

The Continuation Bet

A continuation bet is a bet you place on the flop after making a raise before the flop. It doesn’t have to be a bet with a real hand. It’s just any bet you make after a preflop raise. The term has a connotation that associates it with bluffing because most hands with which you raise miss the flop completely. In other words, most continuation bets are bluffs.

Purposes of the C-Bet

Understanding the purposes of the c-bet will help you become a better bettor in general. There are three different purposes of c-betting. Two of them depend upon the situation and one exists all the time.

1. To make your opponents fold

If you make a raise with a hand like AK and miss the flop, you use a continuation bet to make your opponent fold. You don’t want a call because you don’t have a hand. In this case, you are relying on the momentum you generated when you raised preflop. This is the most common purpose of the continuation bet.

2. To build the pot

On the flip side, you can use the continuation bet to build the pot when you actually have a real hand. One of the basic premises of poker is to get money in the pot when you have a strong hand. What better way to do it than to start betting right off the bat?

3. To keep your opponents guessing

Finally, every continuation bet you make keeps your opponents guessing. Sometimes you’re betting with nothing and other times you’re betting with strong hands. You want to keep it mixed up so that in the end your opponents are more likely to call when you have strong hands and to fold when you have weak hands.

C-Betting without Thinking

Ok, so you may have already known much of that but it always helps to see it written out in plain English. Anyways, let’s talk about increasing your profits with the c-bet. One of the costliest mistakes poker players make with the c-bet is using it every single hand without thinking.

One of the main problems I used to have with c-bets was that I used them every single time I raised before the flop. It was just what I believed – what kind of whimp would make a raise before the flop and then check? It just didn’t seem right to make a preflop raise without a continuation bet.

Well, this mistake in my logic started to cost me a lot of money. I’d get into the habit of playing 8 tables at a time and then throwing out c-bets left and right without even thinking about it. The only rule I had was that I wouldn’t c-bet if there was more than 1 opponent in the pot.

I didn’t notice it at first, but eventually I came to realize that people were really starting to mess with my c-bets. It seemed like I couldn’t get folds like I used to. People would call my c-bets and then bet on the turn every time. Other people would raise all of my c-bets. I just couldn’t figure out what the problem was.

The problem I was having was predictability. I’d become super predictable, and therefore super exploitable, by c-betting every single flop but folding to any sign of resistance. It was the easiest thing in the world to call my c-bet and then pull a float play on me.

Improving Your Continuation Bets

Eventually I realized there was something seriously wrong and that I needed to update my c-betting strategy. It sounded like an impossible task at first because I was so entrenched in my multi-tabling, auto-pilot continuation betting routine.

Luckily, I discovered a pretty simple set of observations I could make before placing continuation bets. It didn’t require a ton of extra thinking and it made my life a lot easier. Here’s what I now look at when contemplating a continuation bet:

1. How many opponents are in the pot

If there is more than 1 opponent in the pot and I’m in early position, I don’t c-bet unless I have a hand. This rule sounds predictable but it rarely causes a problem. If I played against the same group of people on a regular basis, I would mix it up occasionally. But for the average poker player, this is just fine.

When I’m in late position, I’ll throw out a continuation bet against two people if they both check to me. Against 3 or more opponents, I won’t c-bet at all unless I have a strong hand.

2. The board texture

Some boards are good for c-bets and other boards are horrible. Think about the types of hands your opponents like to call raises with and then ask yourself if the board is friendly or scary to those hands.

The best boards for c-betting are dry ones that have an Ace or King and two small cards. These look like the kind of cards that could help the hand of someone who made a preflop raise. Your opponents won’t like it and will fold most of the time.

Draw heavy boards are bad for continuation betting because it’s more likely that these boards connect with your opponents’ hands. A board like 9TJ suited is horrible. It’s hit every middle card, given straight draws to bigger cards and helped out any two cards that share a suit with the flop. Don’t waste your money betting into these unless you have a specific reason for doing so.

Boards with three low cards are somewhat iffy for continuation betting. Against some opponents, these boards will bring easy folds. Other opponents will stick around because they don’t believe that you have a big pair. You could be betting with a couple of missed overcards. Some opponents will call you down all the way but others will fold if you make another bet on the turn or river.

3. Recent history

If you have taken down a few pots without showdowns recently, some opponents will spite-call you. They’ll get angry and call because they are sick and tired of you c-betting. Sometimes they’ll even mention it in the chat box. It can be tempting to bet just to irritate them even further but that’s useless. They are already upset and probably playing poorly. If you don’t have a piece of the board and suspect you’re up against a spite-caller, don’t make the c-bet.

Other times, you might look like a tightwad and suspect you can take the pot down without much trouble. In that case, feel free to make the bet. If it doesn’t work, there’s always next time.

4. Stack Sizes

One of the stupidest mistakes I make on a regular basis is forgetting to look at the stack size of my opponent before making a c-bet. Sometimes you’ll be up against short stacks and any c-bet you put out there will commit you to the pot. If you don’t have anything, it’s best to skip the c-bet against these players. They’ll call or push all-in with any piece of the board or any draw.


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MessagePosté le: Mer 14 Oct - 20:47 (2009)    Sujet du message: Publicité

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