So when the BB to stack ratio is high for all players, typically at the start of a game, a good amount of speculation is healthy.

The idea that it is preflop specualtion that needs an immediate return on investment by the flop.

 

Low pairs are good speculative hands.

I find that suited connectors make bad speculative hands.

 

So what do the numbers say?

 

Rough numbers say you will hit a set 12% of the time on the flop when playing pairs.

Rough numbers say you will hit a straight about 1% of the time and a flush about 1% of the time (so suited connector = 2% chance of a good hand)

 

That means that you have a 1 in 8 chance roughly to hit a set when playing trips but suited connectors only help you on the flop 1 in 50 times.

Also, suited connectors have other bad mojo attributes which include :

--- Not hitting your hand and making a pair leaving you way behind any larger pair

--- Hitting your hand but the board obviously makes a straight or flush and everyone freezes up

 

By comparison, a set is much more of a stealthy hand and because it only needs to connect with 1 card on the board, it isn't obvious you have trips as it might be if you had a straight.

 

If i recount the times when I have won big pots, typically they come down to flushes, straights or trips where the opponent has an Ace or King (or even two pair) and they are oblivious to what I could have.

 

Trips usually pays out most common for me when Imake a large flop bet (like 50-75% of the pot) and get called, make a similar bet on the turn but make his draw too expensive too play.

I don't slow play here unless i am 100% sure I will get action from a maniac and my goal is to build the pot right from the flop and hope he over estimates his hand or is willing to pay to draw. There will of course be the occasion where I made it too expensive for them to draw and they fold and I would have lost the hand, so getting a fold here is not always a bad thing.

Some players I have seen slow play their trips with 1BB bets into a 10BB+ pot trying to get a little value out of you and string you along with Pot Odds to call. I hate this play because at most you are eeking out 3BB + whatever the preflop was from your opponent and is that worth the risk of being outdrawn on?

Slowplaying will win you the hand but you lose out on value.

 

I guarantee that if you set-mine well and play your hand aggresivly (don't slow play trips unless you are up against a maniac!!) then you will win some small pots and some really chunky ones and if you don't believe any of the above, start counting up how many times you get trips with a pair, then add to that how much you make on those hands.

You will be surprised just how much of a monster trips are and , they come around quite often when set mining so be prepared to play them well, play them strong with half-pot bets minimum and (for me at least) trips are a hand to go broke on, even vs a 3-card flush or straight (guard against 4-card mind you)