Joined: Wed Feb 29, 2012 11:43 pm Posts: 744 Location: Las Vegas
In my limited experience playing live 1/2 NL my standard open is $10 but in 2/5 my standard ipen is $20 and I add 1bb to my size for every limper before me.....regardless of hand strength. Please don't size raises based on hand strength. Even at 1/2 a casual player will still pick up on that and adjust without even knowing they're adjusting.
Really?? That surprises me, particularly if you're also adjusting raise-size for any limpers, your position, size of stacks to act... I'm not suggesting an approach where AA = $x, 97s = $y; more that against unobservant opponents you can get away with some variation to manipulate pot size and SPR.
Incidentally, do you also regard open-limping at $1/2 as a bad play? That will typically also be exploitable by players who are paying attention, but not many are as far as I can see. Maybe I'm under-estimating them.
Good question Kat. I often wonder that myself. I'll be interested to hear Benton's take on it. I typically don't do because I operate under the assumption that it is not a good play. People seem to do it and then call any raise that comes after regardless of hand strength where I usually play.
Joined: Fri Nov 09, 2007 3:16 pm Posts: 995 Location: The OC
Open limping is fine as long as you open limp strong hands on occasion so that open limping doesnt equal weak hand. Thats why its important not to vary your raises based on hand strength, because it will take perceptive players no time at all to exploit it. Just because its $1/$2 doesnt mean there aren't good players at the table.
I am just not a big fan of limping all together. I have no problem raising a weak hand pre-flop and not hitting. I would be more upset limping with a good hand getting beat.
Although if the table is aggressive I have no problem limping a big hand from EP in order to get action, and then 3 betting the raiser when it comes back around to try to isolate. Of course this has backfired on me before
Joined: Sun Jul 31, 2011 6:25 am Posts: 474 Location: Southern California
This is a great topic. I too recently switched from limit to 1/2 and was surprised about the variance in open raises preflop. Here I was thinking 3BB's was standard and at most tables I'm at, that's pretty much a joke. It's the same as limping, maybe worse.
These days I rarely bet less than $10 if I open. Also, when I do vary it, it has less to do with my hand than not only how the table is running at the moment but also on which players have already folded. If there's a guy there that will call pretty much any raise I make, I'll raise light unless I have a truly premium hand.
And I also factor in my table image, which usually is pretty tight. If I see most raises are being called except for the ones I make, I know I have to loosen up.
Great posts guys. Yes, I should have clarified. My 5x in 1/2 and 4x in 2/5 is a generalization. In reality, if a player never caught on I would raise small with hands that I'm stealing with and big with premiums that I want value from but it just doesn't work that way. Also, if I continually see a person defending their big blind against all raises I may decide to open raise to 10x to get the most value from my hand and rather than raise my weaker hands vs this player I'll just fold them since I know they'll be called. So, to summarize, varying your raise size by hand strength is bad, varying yur raise size due to table dynamics is ok. Also @RobVegasPoker- as an aside, I'm very happy with the way your no limit game is coming based on the tone of your posts. It's becoming clearer to me that yr are starting to really understand the dynamics that come in to play in NL concerning table image, balancing, etc. Keep it up my friend.
So, since a standard raise in 1/2 NL will be $10-15 ish. That seems like if I play anywhere on the strip where the maximum buy-in is 300, then I'm playing with a medium stack for the most part. Harrington states to play deep stack poker you need 100-200 BB but this is based on raises starting around 6 instead of almost double that. And anyone playing less than that, which I am sure there will be, Ill have to play like they are playing a short stack strategy even if they have a $100. Because at $10 bets going into the pot, any challengers with 100 are going to have to commit their entire stack before the river to stay in right? If I had anytime watching 1/2 NL it might be obvious how quickly or slowly pots escalate but I don't. I'm learning but I would appreciate some critique if I thinking on the right track. I know there are way more aspects about who and what type of crew is at the table that affect if I should be playing with short stack vs medium or deep stack strategy. But Im looking for a generalization if Im on the right track. Thanks for all the input.