Pre-flop Poker Talk on Anchor | Podcast #154

In this episode, I discuss my daily 2-5 minute Anchor podcast where I discuss random poker thoughts about studying, strategies and mindset.

In episode 153, I answered three of your questions about apprehension in creating poker videos, how to best utilize my show notes and improving your turn play.

The 3 Advantages (2:30)

One of my Ah-ha! moments was learning about The 3 Advantages: Positional, Skill and Range

Positional Advantage gives so many more options over your opponent.

Skill Advantage means you understand poker better than your opponents and you’re able to exploit them easier than they can exploit you.

Range Advantage pre-flop means that your range is more likely to win before the flop hits.

If you have all 3 advantages, you must play the hand.  2 Advantages, then think about it before you click that bet/call/raise button.  If you only have 1 advantage, then highly consider folding and if you’ve got 0 of the 3 advantages, get out of there.

Isolating Weak Players (6:30)

Isolating happens normally one of three ways:

  1. Somebody limps in, and you raise it up to 4-5bb’s to get all else to fold then the limper calls.
  2. The BB is a player you want to play against, so you open a little bigger to get all else to fold and hopefully the weak BB will see his call as discounted and plays against you OOP.
  3. You can also 3bet over a 2bet pre-flop to get all else to fold and isolate the pre-flop opener.

Isolating normally happens IP vs weak players, and that’s why it’s such a great play.

But, your more observant opponents can use this against you by 3betting over your isolation play, and because you’re likely weak (if they’ve seen you isolate plenty of times before or your Raise Over Limpers stat is very high) you’ll be folding often enough for them to profit off the bluff.

But, hey, you can throw this play right back at those isolating opponents of yours!

Stealing Blinds in Cash Games (9:30)

Stealing blinds in cash games might not seem like a valuable play, but it sure is.

Stealing cash game blinds helps you to:

  • Mitigate your losses in the blinds. You’re losing no matter what in the blinds, but by winning some of those blinds with well-placed steals, you’re adding to your win rate (or subtracting from your losses).
  • Make yourself less predictable. If you can open from the steal positions with J9s, KTs, A6s, QJo and AA, they’ll never know what hit ‘em.
  • Have post-flop position. When you raise from the CO you’ll often force the BTN to fold, thereby awarding you post-flop position once one of the blinds calls.

Which cover do you like?  Let me know in the comments below.  

‘How to Study Poker Volume 2’ is almost ready.  There’s still a bit more for me to do, but I’d like to invite you to be a part of my Pre-launch Team.  You can join by visiting www.smartpokerstudy.com/howtostudypokervolume2 (all one word with the #2 at the end).

Everyone who joins will receive status updates on the progress of the book.  You’ll have early access to buy the PDF version of Volume 2 for just $7.99 a full week before it’s available anywhere else.  You’ll also have early access to the Bonus Playbook with 4 Additional Weeks of Study Plans.

And the BEST PART, everyone who joins and purchases the pre-sale PDF will also receive the full audiobook version of Volume 2 for FREE.  There are a few other benefits that come with joining.


Recognizing 3bet Opportunities (13:40)

The first step to increasing your pre-flop 3betting is to recognize more opportunities to do so.

Track them by using a tick sheet.  For every spot, make a tick on a piece of paper in front of you.  The goal is to continuously pay attention to the action and catch every opportunity to 3bet.  Ask yourself the question, “Can I 3bet here profitably for value or as a bluff?”  At the end of your session, if you ticked off only 75 opportunities but PT4 tells you that you had 150 opportunities, then you know your attention waved and you missed so many spots.

The more you recognize your 3bet opportunities, the more you’ll be making them.

More 3bets in LIVE MTT’s (16:50)

To increase your LIVE MTT 3betting, here are 4 steps:

  • Create a range of 3betting hands off the tables. Choose value and bluff hands that you set ahead of time for 3betting.  This doesn’t mean you have to 3bet it, but putting in that off-the-table thought will lead to more on-the-felt 3betting
  • Know why you’re 3betting: you’re either bluffing or going for value.
  • Have a plan for the remaining opponent’s possible reactions.
  • Practice your 3bet game. Play lower stakes if you have to.

Challenge (21:55)

Here’s my challenge to you for this episode:  The Anchor app makes it so easy to not only record audio segments for others, but it puts out podcasts for you any time you want!  It’s super easy.  So, if you’ve been thinking about doing a podcast, what are you waiting for?  The world is just clamoring for more and more audio content every day, so now is your opportunity.  I’d love to hear what you have to say, so let me know the name of your Anchor show if you start one and I’ll be sure to favorite it and listen to it.

Now it’s your turn to take action and do something positive for your poker game.

Up Next…

In episode 155, I’ll share 5 of my post-flop focused Anchor segments from the past 8 weeks of almost daily Anchor App usage.

Until next time, study smart, play much and make your next session the best one yet.

Sky Matsuhashi
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