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Don’t risk more than what you have to

In poker then one of the biggest flaws that prevent players from being able to beat the game is when they place dead money into the pot. This occurs in both tournaments and cash games. Dead money is money that offers very little chance of a return or in some cases no chance at all. In fact I would go as far as to say that dead money is the biggest flaw that cash players have and it is simply placing money into the pot and then leaving it there.

Let us look at an example to show you what I mean. It is folded around to the button that makes it 3.5bb to go and you call in the big blind with pocket fours. If your plan is to play fit or fold then you are placing dead money into the pot because your strategy is very weak. There are two types of dead money depending on how passive or aggressive your style is and these are passive dead money and aggressive dead money. As a rule then a passive player loses money at a slower rate but a really bad aggressive player can spew money at an alarming rate if left unchecked.

A player can place passive dead money in numerous ways but calling raises with the view of having to hit your hand is one such way. As a rule then players that place passive dead money simply do not fight for the pot adequately enough. On the flip side are players that fight too much for the pot. They are not only very aggressive pre-flop but post flop as well. In the right set of circumstances then aggressive players often run over a lot of table line ups.

However a blindly aggressive player runs into trouble at higher stakes against better players that can read situations and who are also bankrolled for their level. If you are going to play badly and be exploited by your opponents then it stands to reason that it would be better if you did it with less money. A player that placed aggressive dead money into the pot may call your pre-flop raise and then aggressively raise the flop if they have a weak draw. If you can identify such players then coming back over the top or calling them will trap them for a lot of big blinds without very much of a hand.

Carl Sampson is an online poker player and poker ambassador for 888poker

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