I was just playing a game on PokerStars last night when I noticed that their random number generator for the red zone was generating a lot of bad beats. I have been playing on this site for quite some time and I have never seen the red card so high so early in a game. Even with sitting pretty in the small blind I had a pretty good hand getting into the middle blind and nearly forcing a fold when I was re-raised pre-flop.
The flop was the 2s, 8s, 5s. Obviously I was looking to make a reads on my opponents hand and possibly steal the blind. To make a long story short, I got check raised and was almost pacified to call. The river was the 7h and I was staring at a free card. Someone had AA. I should have respect for that. So I called, because I was absolutely positive my opponent had AA. I had the same feeling every time I had my opponent on the ropes: regret.
That is what gambling is, getting yourself into situations where you have little or no control over the outcome. Just the other day one of my clients asked me if I would rather get in the running to lose a hand, or just smooth call and take down a pot pre-flop. Great question. I actually told him that taking it one step further and recommending action was the best answer. He got mad at me for that, but finally agreed to get the other side of the story. You should know that action is recommended if the overall probability of winning is less than or equal to your outs.
In my case, I was playing a seemingly endless string of 6 max no limit hold em games. I had not yet seen even one decent starting hand, when downloading the other night I happened across the 15$ bonus offer. Since I don’t mind spending the bonus on just about anything and not particularly great hands, I jumped at the chance.
The first big hand I got against Sayama Hi Lo was hands alright versus premium hands, which should have raised my win rate significantly. Sayama is a very okay hand, but not an especially strong one. When you raise and get two or more callers behind you that can really stymie your plan of getting the objective. In this case, I raised and got multiple callers. The flop was ragged and I ended up losing the hand.
Just because you are making a considerable profit does not mean you should play like a maniac. There is a time to grind out a small win, and that should be considered a success. Sometimes just taking down one small pot is better than an entire session of losing.
Since then, I have not had the great days where I can win every single hand, however, I am usually able to turn a nice profit during the first hour or two of play. If you are a beginner, profit is something you might consider as a goal. Maybe you are not that type of person to enter a pot in the beginning, but with a jittery hand like AA, pull a good sized pot out of nothing.
Anyway, if you win a nice chunk of money, leave the previous hand at that. Maybe even get out of the hand entirely and try another hand. The idea is to play decent hands and win pots. If you lose, you can rebuy, but you lose nothing. In fact, you have won but not really won anything substantial. Maybe the next hand will be better, so carry on. If you carry on, you will break even but not really make any significant winnings.
Now, if you bust out, you have still have a chance of making a decent hand. If you are playing quality hands, you will win the pot regardless of whether you got lucky on the flop or not. When you are playing junk, however, putting up the blinds will not help you. In fact, raising enough to get the most of it will usually end up with you losing the hand. This is a trap that people fall into all the time.
A better strategy for playing junk hands is to limp in or flat call. whatever the flop is, you should limp into the pot. call with low pocket pairs, and see the flop. see what the flop brings, and then if you are lucky enough to flop a monster get out while you still can and wait for a better hand.
This is the essence of the DewaGG tournament strategy. be patient and wait for your hand to develop. If you are an action junkie, play loose aggressively in the beginning, get a tight image, then when you have a good hand press your advantage.
This is the approach I used in the first half hour of the WSOP a few days ago. The hand I played was from middle position and I was up against Ace king.