Triple-Barrel Bluff


I love all of this analysis, but boy does reading through it make my head spin. It’s hard to think that way playing in some quicker online games. All of this deep analysis feels like it would make bigger strides in live games where you can take a few more seconds to think it through.

It would be nice to have a discussion on simpler ways to evaluate and manage bluffs and value plays in your range and trying to calculate that for your opponent.

As for this, in a cash/ring game, this seems fine, although some players (like me) will pay attention to this. In a tourney or SnG, where maintaining a table image is vital, I keep the same raise the entire time, whether it’s 3x, 4x, or whatever, or if I switch, it’s an in-game adjustment. That way, you may be able to get value on later streets if opponents believe you can 4x with less than premium hands or suited connectors.

Obviously, you made an adjustment. But, as previously said, mixing up raises may work against you instead of for you, as it would limit your range.


To some extent, the goal is to internalize the deeper thoughts and heavier analysis so that it becomes second nature. To draw an analogy, you could probably tell me the value of 6*8 off the top of your head, though when you were eight years old it took regular consultation of times tables, counting and visualization, and rote memorization before you started getting the correct answer regularly.

NLHE, when played well, is very similar. Construct starting ranges based on your position and those of your opponents who have bet/called before you. At first you may need to regularly review those ranges while you’re playing, but over time it will become second nature, freeing up your mind to do deeper analyses.

This took a while for me to figure out. I was finding that early in tournaments, it would take large bet sizes (5BB or more) to thin the field preflop. If I continued betting that big, pretty quickly I was getting only folds. When I opened up my range, I was only getting calls or 3-betted from much stronger hands than were in my range. Particularly as the field is narrowed down to a point where there are significantly fewer people at the table (e.g. when there are ten players left in a 9-seater tourney, and there are two tables of five), you’ll need to expand your starting range to play more hands, and drop your open size to compensate.

Nobody ever said poker was easy. Glad you’re getting something out of these discussions, even if it sometimes makes your head spin. :slight_smile:


Well said! For me, guesstimating a range preflop has become much easier, it’s just in specific spots where you “tweak” your range and actions that get me at times. As for the raising sizes, somewhere in the wheelhouse of 3-4x seems to find that perfect balance between getting callers and folding. Of course, it always varies.

Thanks for some good discussion. :slight_smile: