Playing Texas Hold'em - PT (pot limit)



One of the most fundamental differences between Texas Hold’em PL (pot limit) and FL (fixed limit) play, comes when you flop top set but one (or more) of the players still in the game, get a four card flush. In NL or PL, you’d normally be able to force them out of the game, by killing their odds for a call. In PL and NL, you’ll also be able to manipulate the opposition by leaving them just enough odds to call your raise, and thus to have them stuff the pot for you. In FL, not only is it quite impossible for you to regulate the odds you allow your opponents, but most of the time, you won’t even be able to make them fold when you’re holding a possible winner. A guy with a 4-card flush may well decide to call whatever you may raise in FL on your trips, since the odds tell him to do so.

Giving away post-flop cards to a player who’s chasing a flush draw is not exactly a good idea, but there’s not much you can do about it in FL. On the other hand, giving him those cards is exactly what you want to do if you want him to feed the pot for you. Trouble is what generates the most money in poker, and if you can get trouble to work for you, you will walk away with a nice pot at the end of the hand. This is exactly why staying out of trouble should not always be your first priority.

In order to get trouble to work for you in NL and PL games, you have to adopt some very skillful betting. You can’t just go out there and raise like a madman, hoping your opponent will call your bullshit (pardon my French), especially not if you’re faced with a good player. You always have to bet exactly as much as to just barely keep his odds up. Never bet any less than that, but don’t bet any more either.

In PL play, you can’t actually offer a guy incorrect odds in the post-flop betting process. The worst you can do is give him 33%, so it’s always a good idea to bet the pot (even when you’re in a NL game) as it will still give you an edge over your opponent’s chances of catching a flush card on 4th street.