If you have read my previous columns you know that I think most of the money that is won and lost at the lower levels of live No Limit comes from players flat calling preflop with improper effective stacks (not deep enough to call).
When we are determining whether or not to call with a hand like a suited connector or pocket pair we must go after the preflop raiser’s effective stack not other players that have called the raise in front of us. If a player raises up front and two others call in between those two others are flat calling with similar hands to the type that we hold. How are we going to make a ton of money with 44 against a guy who has 89s?
There is one exception to this rule however and that is with small suited aces. With small suited aces we actually should concern ourselves more with the people that have called the initial raise and watch their stack. We should avoid calling these aces heads up versus the preflop raiser as it is very difficult to win a big hand against an opener’s range. However, when deep, we have the chance to over flush the people in between if they are calling with suited connectors. It gets even to the point where I may over call a raise from an upfront player who is relatively short just to get involved with those that have called in the middle. You also have the added value of flopping trips with the best kicker, straights and aces up.