In this strategy series, CoinPoker’s Chief Community Manager and pro poker player Isabelle “No Mercy” Mercier walks you through the basics of the game. Each No Mercy Monday comes with expert advice on how to play, and it all starts with starting hands.
Last week we dove deeper into table positions by describing the pros and cons of playing from the blinds. Today we will cover a more specific concept: stealing the blinds.
Steal the Blinds
As we saw last Monday, playing from the blinds is a very unique position in poker. It can seem cheaper to enter pots, as you already had to put mandatory money in there, but do not forget that you will be first to act on every single round of betting after the flop.
In addition to taking advantage of table position, we want to elaborate on a very important concept in poker: stealing and protecting the blinds. Today we’ll start by discussing the topic of stealing the blinds.
As mentioned before throughout the first chapter about starting hands, I do not encourage you to play too many mediocre hands. However, since Coin Poker is an action-focused poker platform with many six handed games, you will have to enter more pots than in a regular full nine handed game – and these trash hands will sometimes allow you to steal the blinds.
As mentioned before throughout the first chapter about starting hands, I do not encourage you to play too many mediocre hands.”
Indeed, when you are sitting on the button and no one has entered the pot before you, there are only two players remaining behind you: the small and big blinds.
They had to put mandatory money into the pot, and chances are that they do not hold premium hands. This will be the easiest spot for you to raise and try to win the blinds without a showdown. Depending on the degree of resistance you face from the players sitting in the blinds, you might even be able to do that very often, and with mediocre hands!
However, apart from your own table image and the aggressiveness or passiveness of the players sitting in the blinds, you should also take into consideration the sizes of their stacks before attempting to steal the blinds.
If the big blind is sitting on 2000 CHP and you raise with air at 2200 CHP on blinds at 500-1000, a mere call from that player will force you to expose your trashy hand and possibly double him up easily. You have to make sure that the stacks behind you are big enough so that the players can fold to your raises.
Join me twice a week in the Hubble Bubble tournaments to practice your skills and try to win my 2000 CHP bounty!
– Isabelle “No Mercy” Mercier