Bluffing in Poker
by The Predictem.com Pundit
Bluffing is a valuable part of poker. In this article we'll try to teach you some lessons on when to bluff and when not to bluff. There are millions of variables, however, we'll cover a few that should help you take your game to the next level.
Don't bluff the short stack at the table.
The short stack at the table is the most likely to be desperate or not back down from a bluff. This isn't always the case but it's a good rule of thumb to avoid getting into this style of play with a guy that doesn't have much to lose.
Avoid bluffing novice/weak players. A player that has a casino game type of mentality that is willing to gamble and lose is a tough customer to bluff. While your busting your balls to try to get a guy to fold his pair of 4's, he is more likely to hold onto them and go to the showdown making your bluff worthless. He simply doesn't realize that he's holding a pair he should fold.
Avoid small raise bluffs. If players are already committed to the pot, a small raise isn't going to scare anybody off. It takes a big move to knock a player out of a marginal hand.
Be familiar with all typs of bluffs and when they should be used. A "stone cold bluff" is when you don't have anything at all. It's a balsy move, and only really worth a hoot when your in late position, preferably the last person to call and preferably with no strong bets ahead of you. If you make your stone cold bluff and somebody reraises you, you may be the victim of your own game, so be careful and try to be sure that the players in front of you haven't shown any strength in their hands.
Another great bluff is the semi-bluff. This is when a player is calling or raising with a potentially good hand. One that CAN be made into something strong such as a straight draw or flush draw but your sitting open ended and need that one last card or your one color short of your flush.
Using the flop to bluff. Make a good sized bet preflop. Once the flop comes, hammer it again creating the illusion for those at the table that you HAD a good hand and the flop made it better. This is very tricky and will scare many out of the hand.
If you've got some good bluff information you'd like to share with us, please drop us a line at predictem at hotmail.com.
The Art of Bluffing in Poker by professional poker player Kevin Swope.
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