Precautions When Slow Playing in Poker
Slow playing in poker is a situational strategy. It can be a deadly tactic in some situations but it can also be a dumb thing to do in others. Here are some hints on when to play the tactic well and how to be cautious with slow playing in poker.
Slow playing in poker is a good strategy when we want to build a big pot to win later in the game. It's good with multi-way pots and we have a premium hand. The idea is to make opponents believe that we're playing loosely or passively so that they think they have the winning hand. We want them to bet so we can raise them.
But slow playing in poker should not be done with mere good or playable hands. When we do, we're just allowing opponents to develop better hands than we have and beat us eventually. With good or playable hands we play outright tight and aggressive. If we opt to play them with slow playing in poker, even if opponents have weaker hands, they light hit a draw on the flop or at the turn and steal the pot we've been building for ourselves.
For an example, let's say we have suited AK clubs and the flop comes A spade, K heart, and 3 diamond. When the game reaches the turn an A heart turns up. We hold powerhouse stone nuts. To effect slow playing in poker we raise bets until the turn builds a profitable pot multi-way. Remember, though, that slow playing in poker does not work in heads-up poker games where aggressive plays always builds momentum at the table and the action is fast.
In some cases, a player with a king may call our bets during our slow playing in poker, but will not make a bet himself. Hence we need to have a premium hand with this tactic to force opponents to bet. However, we also need to allow them to develop a good hand but not one that is better than our hand. This means we allow them to bet to see the flop. If the flop seems harmless to us but useful to them to develop a good hand, we proceed with out slow playing in poker.
Hence, slow playing in poker is based on how strong our hand is over the opponents'. We should see to it that the situation is right for the strategy. If not, then we better opt for one that fits our circumstances.