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Dazed and confused in PLHE

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  • Dazed and confused in PLHE

    Does anyone else suffer from this?

    In PLHE, I have almost no clue what others are holding. In NLHE, I sometimes can put a person on a specific hand from their betting pattern.

    It may jsut be lack of experience, as I often suffer from this in LHE.

    So in PLHE I am left with playing my own cards and feeling like I am not able to improve my game.


  • #2
    in pot limit hold em, it is very hard to get all your chips in the middle preflop, so the game requires excellent post flop discipline. i think you see more people seeing the flop hoping to hit a monster and play it out from there. no limit is much more of a preflop game due to the fact that all your chips are or can be, put in preflop.

    pot limit hold em plays more like omaha to me. you still have to be patient waiting for the right hands, but you have to be able to read the players postflop. see what the flop brings, then try to put them on a hand. otherwise, you will take too many so called bad beats.


    • #3
      I don't see why you should have a problem Randall. There isn't that much difference between the 2.


      • #4
        Re: Dazed and confused in PLHE

        Originally posted by rggator
        In PLHE, I have almost no clue what others are holding. In NLHE, I sometimes can put a person on a specific hand from their betting pattern.
        Originally posted by Noodles
        I don't see why you should have a problem Randall. There isn't that much difference between the 2.
        Interesting that we have two players with reputations as having an excellent "A" game express such varied opinions on PLHE vs NLHE.

        Since in NLHE pre-flop pot-sized bets are an appropriate standard raise, most instances are quite similar instead of vastly different. However, as JMuzz pointed out, the all-in responce is absent in PLHE pre-flop. All of your chips are not at risk all of the time so the games are fundamentally different. A classic case of two individuals with vastly different perceptions yet neither can be labeled as wrong. So you see, Grasshopper, there is no reality. There is only perception.

        Knowing this how would you play differently against these two players?


        • #5
          Do you think the difference is that Europeans see and play so much more pot-limit than Americans? I am with Randy on this one. I never feel like I can hit my stride in pot-limit, where I feel like I can maintain an aggressive posture at a no-limit table.

          I am also struck by the fact that big buy-in tourneys will have hands and hands go buy with no flop, and certainly no turn at the final table. Read the tourney reports from $1000 and higher buy-ins in pot-limit hold-em (slightly less so in omaha) and the reporters consistently bemoan the tediousness of the game as players bet and pass pre-flop. Much more action in no-limit. Apparently the top players play the game differently.

          Was playing in a no-limit satellite and some top European players (Bjorin, Costa and Bennett) were folding hands and then comparing how good their "pot-limit" hands were -- and generally showing unsuited middle connectors. I think they were serious, but I must admit i was out of the conversation.

          Funny, now that I think about a thread on Tannebaum's forum about playing J10suited in California is probably relevant. Maybe the key to beating the loose preflop games of California and accumulating chips early in pot-limit is the same -- play middle connectors!

          Other than the obvious --AA, what are pot-limit players favorite hands early, middle and late in tourneys? Love to hear ideas.

          So short of playing incredibly tight, letting other players bust, then trying to get a big hand and double or triple up, and repeating, I have no clue how to beat a pot-limit game.

          This is a game I want to practice at PSO in 2003!

          If you figure this game out Randy, please pass on the secrets!



          • #6
            Hmmm pot limit is a game I actually prefer to no limit, and I do better at it as well. I think Jay hit on a key point - it is much more a post flop game, and since all of my play before I came to PSO was in limit hold em, I feel very confident with my play post flop. I will release big hands, but I will also bet middle pair. I will check raise A LOT, I try and build pots slowly by making feeler bets which will either win the pot outright or give me a chance to make a large bluff bet (this depends on stack size and who my opponent is). TJ's section on PLHE in his book is pretty good IMO, I'd suggest reading it. As for cards that I play, I don't change them much from what I play in NLHE. I don't limp much, usually if I come in, I am opening with a raise, or reraising a raise. I might flat call early in a tourney with AK or AQ or a small PP or connectors (they don't have to be suited) in LP in an unraised pot - again, though, this depends on the table makeup (doesn't everything) and my stack size in proportion to theirs.



            • #7
              Yes, pot limit is a post flop game. In no limit you can protect your aces with a big preflop bet and hope someone makes a mistake and pays you off.

              In pot limit, you can see many more flops and get paid off by players who can not lay down AA to your flopped rag 2 pair.

              Also, one of the skills in pot limit is building the pot. This is similar to "milking" a big hand in no limit.


              • #8
                Not too long ago, I entered a new pay site and decided to start at the $25 PL table and I decided that I would see if I could sell myself as a maniac (thought it would be fun, maybe profitable). So, I rasied pot all the time preflop, and bet my draws to the extent that I could keep enough people in... and I was playing terrible cards. As I made more and more money, I figured out two things.

                A) Big hands (AA,KK,QQ) were costing me money
                B) Rags were making me money

                I'm not here to say that AA and KK are not good hands in pot limit, but, just as Apryll said, you gotta be able to lay it down. The primary reason for this is that normally you can not raise enough preflop to remove the implied odds of middle and lower pocket pairs and drawing hands. Since they have implied odds and you have reverse implied odds, careful is the word of the day.

                Rags (not 8/4 off or something like that) can make you money in this game. I play certain cards against preflop raises all the time. In fact, it excites me to know that someone has AA or KK if they are the type who will see it to the end.

                Against such players, you are searching for a bust hand, something that will take out their entire stack.

                Another important point that Apryll said was the importance of pot building. You want to build the pot to get paid off.

                Hand selection is of much less importance in pot limit, IMO. Post-flop play is the most important skill in PL. Of course, in a PL tournament, the blinds eventually get big enough that power hands will rule.

                I can't tell you how many players I've seen sit down in a PL game and start cussing the person who takes their entire stack with AA or KK with JTs. In NL cash games, I make preflop raises with AA or KK that remove the odds (according to my stack size and that of my opponents that are live) and adjust my raises to remove their implied odds for flopping a set, since this is very tough for me to get away from. In PL, I am not able to do that, and, as a result, I don't really consider AA or KK to be a favored hand of mine.


                • #9
                  I would say the 2 games are mostly similar, maybe 80 or 90% the same. The main difference comes from the fact that you cannot overbet the pot when you desire to do so. Every change in strategy I have seen mentioned in this thread stems from this.

                  A simple example would be when you are in the BB and flop a big draw. In exactly the same given situation in both versions of the game, the play in no-limit might be to go for the check-raise all-in, whereas at pot limit it would be to bet out. This is because a check-raise would not get all-in, but leave you out of position on the turn with a large chunk of your stack in the middle. Whereas betting gives you the opportunity to move all-in should you get raised, and get to either win it there or see both cards to come, which is what you desire. If you are just called then you make a decision on the turn having not committed many chips.

                  Other differences probably relate to the fact that there is no ante. It has been so long since I've played pot limit properly that I have forgot how this might alter the play. There is certainly less pressure, and on average a raiser probably has a bigger hand than in no-limit with antes which has an effect on the gap concept amongst other things alte in the tourney compared to no-limit at same blind level. But, like I said, I am very rusty at this game and my thinking is very vague/hazy, so could be wrong.


                  • #10
                    You said your thinking was hazy. I almost take that as a compliment.



                    • #11
                      Hey man, I wish I was thinking as well as you these days.


                      • #12
                        TY all for the responses.

                        Here is my synopsis:

                        1) Early in the tournament, PLHE does not play like NLHE

                        2) It is a flop game

                        3) Late in the tourney, PLHE plays very much like NLHE

                        I followed this advice in this afternoon's PLHE tourney and am at the final table, and am the biggest stack.

                        woohoo, very lucky, but the advice helped.