When should the flop bet in a multiplayer pot in the WSOP Poker Classroom
WSOP Poker Classroom multiplayer pots have a unique requirement for players not to lose their chips. The reason is simple, the more players in the pot, the less raw equity your range has. Believe it or not, see how AK's equity decreases as the pot increases:
Against three random opponents, AK's raw equity was reduced by nearly 26 %。正如你所见，在多人底池，你的手牌赢率很难超过50% .
How to ride the waves with such a low poker equity requires not only extra vigilance, but also good poker hand choices. In this article, I will analyze how to do this efficiently. let's start!
Multiplayer pots require less frequent betting
In a multi-way pot, the first adjustment you will make is to tighten your betting range. The more players in the pot, the more likely it is to run into a strong hand. Therefore, you have to be careful in multi-way pots and adjust your range to consist mainly of strong value hands and good semi-bluffs.
In multi-way pots, players can easily over-bluff, so be more selective when choosing semi-bluffs. The best options are usually high equity bluffs, such as flush draws and open-ended straight draws. Even if these cards miss, it can be profitable to fire on multiple streets because marginal hands can be forced to fold.
However, if you fire every time you flop a strong draw, you are over-bluffing. So how exactly do you decide which draws to bet and which draws to check?
Here are a few tips for betting with draws in multi-way pots:
Betting when the draw is too weak to check allows better hands to fold
Example: Hand 7d6d, flop 9d-3s-2d
Remember, it's great for us to fold a miss like QsJs when we have a low flush draw.
Betting with a strong draw can be both a value bet and a blow to your opponent's equity.
Example: Hand AsQs, flop Js-10h-5s
Bet with draws when there are no better options, especially if you don't have enough bluffs in your range.
Example: Hands 5c4c, Jc10c, and even KcJh, the flop is As-Qh-3s
We don't have a lot of effective bluffing hands on a board like this. So we can actually bluff with some draws to balance our range (even if it's just a weak gutshot).
Negate the importance of your opponent's poker equity
In multi-way pots, betting with marginal value hands is the correct way to force your opponent to fold and negate their equity.
Your hand may be the best on many flops, but your opponent still has a lot of equity against you. Betting at such times prevents opponents from realizing their equity for free.
Doing this with your betting range will make your play unbalanced, especially when you check, but not all opponents will be able to spot and exploit your value and bluffing range imbalances.
Let's look at a few examples of the benefits of protecting the equity of value hands in multi-way pots.
1/2 table for six NLHE
The protagonist holds JhTh in the CO position
The hero raises to 4.50. The button called with 9c8c. The small blind calls with KdQs. The big blind called with AdTc.
Flop (pot: 18): Js-9h-5s
The small blind checks and the big blind checks. The hero bets 12 and the button calls. The small blind calls and the big blind folds.
On the flop, our JhTh has only a 43.5 chance of winning %。按钮位（9c8c）的赢率是16.5% 29 %，大盲位（AdTc）的赢率是11% . Even though our equity is less than 50%, it is more than enough to bet for a few reasons:
1. Betting can force opponents to fold and negate their equity
We probably have the best hand, but our equity is relatively low and we are vulnerable to attack on the turn and river. By betting, we prevent our opponents from realizing equity for free, allowing them to fold certain hands that might bluff us on later streets.
If we can get our opponent to fold trash, that's a big win for us too. Even if the bet forces only one hand (AdTc) to fold, our equity increases to 52%, which gives us a numerical advantage.
2. The flop may be our best (and only) chance to extract value
A medium-strength top pair like JhTh isn't a safe bet for value on all three streets, especially on a scary board. So when your hand is still the best hand on the flop, you bet and hope that worse hands will call.
3. Betting can sometimes win us a better position
If possible, we want to get the button out of the pot so we have a spot on the back street.
A word of caution: To make sure your checking range isn't too weak, you can play passively with weaker jacks (like Jc8c) and most nines at this point. This prevents your opponent from betting against you every time you check against him.
Leveraging people's cognition in multiplayer pots
Betting against multiple players on the flop is almost always considered a sign of strength (and should be). You can use this knowledge to bet when you see your opponent check in late position.
In this case, we can increase the odds of bluffing because our opponents will be more confident that we have a hand in a multi-way pot. Even if our opponent calls, we can continue to bet on the back street with a blocker of draws or nuts.
Get information by placing bets
From our opponent's response to our bet, we can gain a lot of information about his range. This is especially useful in multi-way pots where we are dealing with such a wide range.
Here's a look at what we can learn by betting against multiple opponents on the Js-9h-5s flop:
If our opponent flat calls our bet on a very dynamic board, we can expect his range to be relatively weak, mostly marginal made and draws. Players with strong hands are likely to raise to extract value and avoid being overtaken by draws.
If our opponent raises and someone calls, we can safely fold the weaker hands in our range.
If any opponent folds, we negate his equity, increasing our chances of winning the hand.
There is no way we can get this information by checking, and less information means more difficult decisions for us on the back street. This is not to say that you should “bet for information” with all marginal value hands. Remember, you should only bet for value with hands that will be called by worse hands.
Betting on information is not what you are betting on, getting information is just an added benefit.
When you're judging whether the flop is going to be bet in a multi-way pot, keep these points in mind:
Compared to a heads-up pot, you should have more value hands and less bluffs in your betting range because you are more likely to encounter strong hands.
Avoid betting too small, which will allow multiple opponents to realize their equity very cheaply.
Not only will your betting range be considered strong when someone checks you in late position, but your opponent is more likely to have a weaker range after checking.
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