Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Micro-Stakes Limit Hold 'Em & Cardschat

Micro-Stakes LHE:
Today I've figured out the problem with playing online Limit Hold 'em at micro-stakes while trying to build a bankroll. While I know being proficient at LHE is an important part of being a good all-around poker player, playing it at micro stakes is like playing Lotto. Everyone puts their money in and tries to hit the big one. The more players, the better chance everyone has to win.

For example: If I catch KK on the button at 25c/50c and raise a few limpers preflop, they'll just think "It's only a quarter more" and they throw another in. Then against 3 or 4 limp-callers holding suited connectors, the strength of that KK goes way down to something like 45-52% to win. Yes, each of them only have about a 10-15% chance to win. But I think of it as "the field", as a whole, has a 48-55% chance against me. I don't know if that thinking is correct, but it sure seems true. For "only a quarter more", any gambler can try his luck at a bigger pot.

This seems to force me to play incorrect poker by limping in position with semi-strong hands. Though I've read about Sklansky advocating limping preflop to keep the pot size down so that poor odds can be created later, it seems these chasers will call with bad odds no matter what. I often end up check-dumping my AJ on the turn for fear that some clown has hit a 7 to pair his 87 suited or something. I really like playing LHE, with its more prominent odds calculations, etc. But I think I'll wait until I can afford to play $2/$4 or more, where a raise has more strength. I'll stick to NLHE at micro-stakes for now.

Cardschat Poker Forum:
You may be wondering what that "new threads" section is on the right side of the page. I forgot to mention that I was a member of a poker-related online forum called "Cardschat" (www.Cardschat.com). My handle there is "MrSticker". I really enjoy being a member there. I go on there to chat about poker, engage in hand analysis, ask opinions & participate in discussions, etc. But they also have some great online freerolls and money-added tournaments. There's even a "game arcade" section where members can unwind by playing a cool shoot-'em-up or puzzle game. If you decide to sign up there, please put my handle in the referral field. I don't get anything for it except bragging rights and maybe some kudos from Nick, the cool admin there. Even if you don't want to join, you can still click on the links in that feed to just read the cool articles & posts.

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