Quick history on me: I suck at cash games but really enjoy tournaments. I've worked pretty hard on my game but only play relatively small stakes MTT online ($5-$20). I play much bigger when I live play and have binked $200-$500 live events either here in LA or in Vegas about 6 times over the last 8 years. I don't play many of these bigger events but my ROI in them is pretty solid.
That said, I've found the level of play in live events of that buy-in range is pretty comparable to the level in your typical online donkfest and I'm trying to develop a set of assumptions that recreational players like me can make about random unknowns. I want to do this because part-time players like me so rarely play against the same players that I think building a general "profile" for bad players might be helpful.
I'll throw out a couple here that I've found to be true and would love if people would add to the list and hopefully we can get something of value out of this thread.
1) If a weak player limps in the pot, he is rarely, if ever folding to a raise. I've found this to be true for raises up to 6x, but even then 6x and above usually gets called by a limper preflop.
2) Players that open a pot to more than 3x (especially in the mid to late stages) are generally clueless, and will make a pot sized bet if called most times, regardless of the flop.
3) Bad players that 3 bet light, rarely fold to the 4 bet. This is probably pretty obvious considering most bad players are POWs, but I can't tell you how many times I've seen the button 3 bet and initial raise, get 4 bet all-in and then SNAP call with K10 offsuit (regardless of current pot odds).
And now some questions: fish limps in, calls raise, then min leads out on the flop. Where do we go from there? Often times even if I raise there, they will call and then min-lead out again. Are the blocking bets with 2nd or 3rd pair? Trying to get cheap looks at draws?
Anything else we can add to the "profile"??
"And now some questions: fish limps in, calls raise, then min leads out on the flop. Where do we go from there?" i wanna know the answer to this too lol.
if i make a hand against a bad player 2 handed and they lead into me w a min bet i call most of the time instead of raising even if the board is coordinated. a lot of times they lead out w a min bet again on the turn etc. but the good part about them is, they are predictable. like you said its tough to raise them off of hands, but the good news is they let you see turns and rivers cheaply on coordinated boards. i prefer to play cautiously against bad players and if the draws complete just be careful. the good thing about playing cautiously against them is that they WILL pay you off and bluff rivers AND lose tons of value on made hands. when your running bad doesn't always work that way but nothing is more tilting then getting money in vs some guy playing like hellen keller and being behind.
I've yet run into the people three betting light and then calling a four bet... since I tend to only four bet with strong hands I would be happy to see that happen. As for #1 and 2 I agree completely. #2 makes no sense, I never understand people opening 5x in the ante stages, esp when they're opening for like 1/6 their stack.
The biggest thing I run into live is completely idiotic bet sizing and complete lack understanding of odds. In a 7-way pot, I had limped the button with TT, flop came AdTd9c and guy bet 1000 into 700. I raised to 2500, everyone folds to original bettor, who also folds. This is such a live-only low-stakes play!
in the live games i play here are my generalisations of the bad players or players in general:-
if a female player raises it's AA-QQ AK maybe JJ
if a player open limps they are seeing the flop....regardless, only a shove will stop them
older players limp a lot, young players raise a lot
older players will call you down....cos they dont want to be bluffed by some young whipper snapper
if a player makes a big oversized raise pre, like 6x 8x they usually proudly table JJ after everyone mucks, cos they "didn't want a caller"
players fail to adjust hand strengths in short handed or late pos situations, ie raise fold AQ on button cos bb has shoved so must be beat!
players fail to understand pot odds when facing an all in to their bb, despite getting 5/2 odds they fold their trash saying "i cant call you with that"
also they fail to understand how a player can call their 4 bb shove without looking in the bb with huge odds
These are of course wide generalisations and some players don't fit this at all, but using these as my "default" is usually a good starting point until a player shows me they are capable or don't fit these "stereotypes"
It always seems to me that when a player leads out for a minbet on the flop, theyre trying to get an easy read on your hand, and usually when no high cards are out.
A common example of this would be: someone limps or is in the blind and smooth calls your raise, flop comes 3 5 9 and they lead out for a minbet. 9 times out of 10 a weak/unimaginative player is going to flat call when they have AK/AQ and raise with an overpair, immediately telling the minbetter where they're at in the hand. It should be noted I only play micro donkaments, but this happens quite often in the buyins I play($2-4)
scenario #1: If they limp a lot when everyone's deep stacked, say a third of the time or more and call raises most or all of the time, you've gotta put in big raises against those guys for a couple reasons. You don't have to do it immediately. IN fact its advisable to wait a few orbits and see how they play post flop. But once you get comfortable, start trying to iso the limpers-esp when they'll be OOP.Edited By: TheVillageGrinder Dec 21st, 2010 at 04:33 PM
Say you get a caller or two, if you hit the flop, there's a pretty good chance that ur ahead since they were calling their entire limp call range which is likely enormous. Then you can assess board texture vs the strength of ur hand, how they play and decide whether its best to go for pot control or value bet.
2.) The other poster makes a good point. Is this the type of player that is 5xing JJ or are they just 4-5xing their entire opening range. How often are they opening the action? How wide can you range them? These are all important questions to answer. I would say however if it is a player that is always opening 4-5x + AND is relatively active AND hasn't adjusted their opening bet size to account for the rising blinds, then I would say that there a couple assumptions you can make about this type of player:
One-they aren't very good or at least they are not stack size aware.
Two-As a result of one, you will probably have a great deal more fold equity pre flop vs a player like this because they won't realize that opening 4x and folding to a shove while they have 12bbs behind is bad.
So against a player like this I think you wanna think about iso jamming more often. As we said players like this will fold pre when they shouldn't and they will likely view your shove as strong since you came over the top of their big raise. Also, iso shoving becomes very profitable when you consider how often you will win pre without showdown as so many chips will be up for the taking pre.
calling a raise vs a player like this is the worst strategy esp since you know he's firing the flop. Put him to a decision pre. Knowing just how wide you shoujld be shoving here is the key and that can only be determine by observing the table.
3.) obviously against a player that will three bet light opening open ur 4 bet range is usually the reight decision. HOwever in the scenario that you described wherein the player will make insanely loose/wide snap calls of 4 bet shoves, then imo, you need to narrow your opening range but widen your 4 bet shove range. This is the simplest type of bad player to play against imo however it just requires a wee bit more patience than in the other scenarios.