Friday :: June 29, 2007
Raise, Call, Fold: What do they all mean?
Make sure you do not constantly limp in on hands, because calling shows weakness. Even when faced with a raise, you should reraise or fold, because the raiser controls the hand. Exceptions to this rule would be if there are two or more raisers and you find yourself with a medium pair. You should either flat-call or better yet fold the hand to not risk losing out to a higher pair on the flop.

A calling station is a person who limps in whenever there is no raise, and sometimes even with raises. If you find yourself with a weak hand preflop, it doesnít deserve a call no matter how small the blinds are, because if you hit something, someone is likely to outdraw you, or worse, out kicker you. An example of that would be your A2 vs. an AK. Board reads 5,6,2,K,A. Basically calling with garbage will hurt you in the long run. Another reason limping in is bad, is because if you donít hit on the flop, you will be outbet by a player holding a stronger hand.

If you want to constantly win playing poker, you need to take charge of each and every hand in which you are in the pot. Never call, even if you think you can trap somebody. The only exception is if you have the predetermined ďnutsĒ. If you have a good holding preflop, then raise it! That way youíll lose the calling stations and play against only those with strong hands.

If you raise preflop you donít necessarily need to bet the flop. Contrary to what most people say, I believe that if you know the other person has a stronger hand then you, and he is likely not to fold, do not bet! Iíve seen this happen time and time again. Youíll only be reraised and then lose more of your money than you should have lost. An example = you have AK and your opponent has JJ. You bet out preflop, he called, and the flop comes J, 5, 4. You think you have the best hand and your opponent reraises your raise. Even though you think you have a chance to hit a higher pair than he might have, you should fold, without having to lose even more chips.
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