Friday, January 13, 2006

Playing some live Texas Holdem tonight - time to review tells

The wifey is giving me a free pass to go out tonight after work (thanks Babycakes!) which is really a pretty big deal considering we have 3 kids under 6 years old that require a TON of time and attention. I'm not sure why she's in such a great mood, maybe it was that BIG O that I gave her the other night ;) and no, she wasn't faking!

So in preparation of live play, I'm reviewing some tells. Here are signs of strong hands, typically:

1) Guards cards (they are valuable!)

2) Act non-threatening (please don't fold, I have a monster)

3) Genuine smile (I'm really going to stick it to you!)

4) Strange behavior (I'm going to act like an idiot so he'll want to call and see what I have - Vinny Vinh jumping jacks on WPT)

5) Look down at chips after flop (time to get my money in with the best of it!)

6) Good posture (sitting up b/c excited about hand)

7) Leaning forward (ready to attack with a good hand)

8) Quick glance at cards (my cards are really good and I don't want anybody to see them)

9) Plays a hand while stacking chips (I want to stack my chips but my hand is just too good!)

Here are weak tells:

1) Shuffle cards (I don't care if these flip over b/c they are garbage)

2) "My cards look good" (trying to act strong b/c weak)

3) Appears ready to bet (trying to act strong b/c weak)

4) Cover mouth when betting (Subconsciously saying, "I don't have much")

5) "I dare you" (trying to act strong when weak)

6) Looking back at hole cards (if you have it, you know it!)

7) Raising voice (trying to act threatening b/c weak)

8) Eye pupil dilation (full of shit)

9) Tossing for distance (again, trying to act threatening b/c weak)

In summary, when a player is acting strong they are usually weak and vice versa. This obviously is not true of all players, but I think it's true for most. The two tells that I tend to use the most are the "look down" and body posture.

Even more important are betting patterns. Do they play lots of pots or very few. Do they raise with strong hands, strong draws or weak hands. What I'll look for are the loose limpers. I've wrote about this extensively in previous posts, but they are your personal ATM machine. Loose limper to you in late position with 88, raise it up and isolate them. Anytime you think you have the best hand preflop and can isolate, raise it! Then, if you still think that you have the best hand post flop, bet, raise and re-raise liberally.

Okay, that's it for now. Have a great weekend and wish me strong hands and good odds!


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