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Adjusting to nitty weekday games?

dontfeedthenits Posts: 396Subscriber
edited December 2015 in NLHE Strategy Discussion
I'm going to have some time off in December and plan to play weekday poker (3/5).

I expect the play in these games to be a mostly tight/passive, and in some cases VERY tight.

Bart's material is not geared towards this type of game. Curious what adjustments people like to make in these games.

Here are the things I could think of:
1. Thin value spots will be rarer, you often aren't getting called by worse.

2. Call way less frequently. Everyone's bluffing frequency is too low so generally you should be folding or raising. Exception being calling with the intention of bluff on a later street.

3. Don't count on implied odds unless your draw is hidden or there are other special circumstances that lead you to believe you'll get called when you hit.

4. Raise wide in position preflop

5. 3 bet light (squeeze) when there is a loose raiser who gets multiple callers. RESPECT YOUR OPPONENTS 3 BETS.

6. Continuation bet more

7. Semi bluff more (esp. as a raise and esp. if draw is hidden)

Ideally the table dynamic you want to create is all the nits think 'Oh man look at this LAG tard, I just need to wait till I get a hand so I can get it in with him!' Meanwhile you keep taking down lots of small-ish pots with your aggression, and folding when they play back.

Note: The type of game I'm describing doesn't exist at Commerce, but I think might exist in Las Vegas (at least on some tables). It's basically tight/passive with a few TAGs sprinkled in.

Comments

  • KSMKSM Posts: 222Subscriber
    edited December 2015
    1. L
    2. A
    3. G

    4. I
    5. T

    6. U
    7. P

    BABY!!

    But, seriously these are games where you are going to have to closely observe who's in each hand. Your entire decision may rest upon what you think your opponents are specifically capable of if there are multiple styles of play going on at your tables.
  • DavidChan Posts: 1,208Pro
    If you guys think that the correct adjustments to tight-passive nitty daytime games is to do some combination of:

    1. Cbet Bluff More
    2. Semi-Bluff More Often (Especially with Hidden Draws)
    3. LAG IT UP

    ...then you are completely mistaken.

    I have played a lot of daytime games in the last several years because I have 3 little kids at home (and I promised my wife that I wouldn't keep doing crazy graveyard shifts where I return home in early am). More often than not, I am playing tighter/less aggro in nitty daytime games than I am playing in normal/looser games.

    While there are times where I will "LAG IT UP," I don't think that ramping up the LAGginess as a default is a good counter-strategy against nitty regs who are trying to play very solid.
  • dontfeedthenits Posts: 396Subscriber
    edited December 2015
    DavidChan said:

    If you guys think that the correct adjustments to tight-passive nitty daytime games is to do some combination of:

    1. Cbet Bluff More
    2. Semi-Bluff More Often (Especially with Hidden Draws)
    3. LAG IT UP

    ...then you are completely mistaken.

    I have played a lot of daytime games in the last several years because I have 3 little kids at home (and I promised my wife that I wouldn't keep doing crazy graveyard shifts where I return home in early am). More often than not, I am playing tighter/less aggro in nitty daytime games than I am playing in normal/looser games.
    Where does your profit/edge come from? What are the flaws in the 3 points above?

  • dontfeedthenits Posts: 396Subscriber
    edited December 2015
    Also day games at commerce have a totally different feel/dynamic. These V's would never set foot in commerce... To quote an old (probably racist) nit at the table "Too many asians who just want to gamble".

    All these villains want to do is play poker against the same white old guys they've been playing on and off with since 1978. I think there are other games like this on the east coast (and maybe vegas), I've never seen anything like it at commerce.
  • DonutDonkey22 Posts: 26SubscriberProfessional
    You have to find ways to exploit nits...mostly pushing small edges, but theres things you can do. I would open slightly more hands pre, and 3bet a fair amount in position with hands that play better heads up (KQ, AJs), because you don't have to worry about getting 4bet bluffed. and I would play tighter from the blinds as they are gonna give you a walk more often than you're entitled to. It's basically all small stuff that often can't be realized in a single session but overtime you will see a decent profit in these games by winning a lot of small pots and getting away from coolers that your opponents can't get away from.
  • TastesLikeBurning Posts: 429SubscriberProfessional
    A lot will depend on how nitty each player is.

    Some of these guys will never fold - they're looking for "through tickets", so when they have a hand, they're never giving it up no matter what pressure you put on them. They get dealt AA and they just want to punish the aggro guy who's new to their spot.

    Some of these guys will fold to double barrels - they'll peel light-ish but figure you have "it" if you fire turn.

    Some of these guys are fit-or-fold on the flop - unless they've got a strong made hand or strong draw, they're dumping it no matter how little you rep.

    Figure out how nitty each player is and exploit those tendencies. Like David said, having a "LAG" approach as a default can be dangerous, even in these kinds of games.
  • Nicholas31 Posts: 50Subscriber
    I tend to delayed Cbet a lot more. OMC loves to check it over to the young pup and let him hang himself but can't fathom doing it twice so you pick up your pot then.
  • pocketzeroes Posts: 174Subscriber
    edited December 2015
    Nicholas31 said:
    I tend to delayed Cbet a lot more. OMC loves to check it over to the young pup and let him hang himself but can't fathom doing it twice so you pick up your pot then.
    I think they all have different tendencies. The point is to figure out a strategy against each one individually. What TastesLikeBurning said...

    I think it is a good thing to raise very often preflop as it gets these guys into unfamiliar territory and they will make a lot of bad adjustments. However, at a certain point that's just bleeding money so you've gotta also know when to cut back a bit.
  • tima44 Posts: 21SubscriberProfessional
    LAGgy image is def not the one I'd like to have in these games. Try not to make the whole table play against you by earning the title of Shit Disturber. Though of course you can book a hug win with this style sometime, provided that you run like Aris on the ancient battlefield, more likely what you will achieve is turn an easily readable, stress free +EV session into an uphill battle. Moves that would leave Durr envious will be made on on by the grizzled nits who otherwise bluff no more that couple times in a calendar year. Nobody will respect your bets which is great when you happen to have a big value hand but when you're facing 4-5 opponents each time you raise you really will need huge hands to win those pots. Another point to consider: if you happen to dump couple of buy ins at the beginning and will hope to win it back later when you eventually manage to have a big hand with a laggy image - that might never materialize. Those nits often tend to go into a lockdown mode once they happen to double up their day's initial investment and some even outright hit and run.

    I would even go further and say that you should adopt same style like theirs with few important deviations.
    Ex. In many of these games there's sort of a mutual "agreement" than when a bunch of people limp you should only raise with JJ-AA, AK and AQs. (And they like to raise large like 10-15 bb to avoid bad beats) Sometimes it is "acceptable" to raise with AJs or 1010 without causing raised eyebrows. If you do it with K5s or 97s (esp a few times) you will earn the SD title. What you can do is play along their style but add an extra hand here and there. Not too many. Like one extra hand an hour or even hour and a half. That will earn you an extra $30-40.

    Another their favourite move is to limp reraise HUGE from EP with AA-KK. Here you don't have to follow suit and waste your AA-KK to pick up few limps but you can def do it as a bluff. Again, don't overdo it and be careful if somebody does call you. This usually means JJ-KK.

    Delayed conbluffs and delayed double barrels are your friends.

    And finally: PRESERVE YOUR TIGHT TRUSTWORTHY IMAGE.
    Don't show bluffs esp for showing off purpose. If you're asked by a friendly talker about your holdings when he folded to your bet after a long tormented tank lie if you didn't have a hand. Even if you did it never hurts to make it a bit stronger. If you have to show a winning hand that was played out of the box go in a tight mode for a while - you're likely to be under fire for some time after that.

    P.S.
    Sometimes they have "cute bluff times". One of the nits would suddenly make a big bet/raise pre or on flop and if it goes through he'd open his airhand with a big smile causing a wave of laughter and general approval from the table. It rarely happens in big pots. They do it not for profit but to liven up the game, fun and boost to their self esteem. Showing your hands in those spots is ok and will help you, along with partaking in conversations and telling jokes, to be accepted in the "inner circle of nits".
  • FuzzypupFuzzypup Posts: 2,298Subscriber
    The general principle is when facing loose calling stations playing for large pots.

    Vs tight nitty guys you are playing for small pots.

    Figure out where they are weak in their post flop play and exploit it.

    Can you LAG it UP?...... It's possible depending what you can get away with and how weak they are.
  • dontfeedthenits Posts: 396Subscriber
    edited December 2015
    My last LAG it up session was EXHAUSTING. I've never expanded so much mental energy playing poker.

    Next time I'm in one of these games I'm going to experiment with the following:
    1. Maintain a tight image (don't be a 'shit disturber').
    2. Look for the most exploitable nit traits of each opponent.
    3. Attempt to exploit those traits without blowing my image.

    I don't think this strategy will ever be as profitable as the Bart Hanson plan at commerce, but maybe these nit games just can't be beat for that much no matter what you do. :)

    I'm convinced lagging it up can be done profitably, but I agree w/points here as to why it may not be optimal. You don't want to take a bunch of predictable players and tilt them into making sick bluffs.

    I am very curious what's optimal in these games...
  • pocketzeroes Posts: 174Subscriber
    edited December 2015
    dontfeedthenits said:
    You don't want to take a bunch of predictable players and tilt them into making sick bluffs.
    This reminds me of a hand I played with a nit in a 2/5 game. He would fold most hands, but occasionally show up with monsters. And he would bet pretty small the whole way. Everybody at the table commented how he only ever showed up with overpairs or sets or TPTK. He never bluffed.

    Well I raised in late position for like $25 with QTo (both black), and I had been raising a ton and tilting the table. This nit then 3bets on his button to like $100 I think, and it seemed very strange to me because I thought he would make it like $65-75 if he had QQ-AA. That's the sizing I had remembered from previous hands. Despite knowing my hand was behind and that I was OOP, I decided to give this guy some action. Flop comes Q98hh. I check and he bets like $150 into a $200 pot, and it was really weird because he never bet this much with an overpair, and he was the type to be scared of the straight possibility. So I called. Turn was the 4h and I checked, and he bet $300 I think. I figure ok he either has exactly AhKh or he must have air because I know if he has a value hand he's scared of the flush. So I called. River was a 9. I check and he instantly goes all in for about $600. There was no possible hands he would bet this way for value so I called. He had a black AKo and I won and felted him.

    So here's this nit who had spent at least the past 4-5 hours quietly waiting for his big hands and playing them smallballish and slow. I am the only person at the table who had any chance of felting this guy, and it happened by him bluffing off his stack. I don't generally mind when the nits start bluffing because they tend to do it in bad spots and it doesn't mesh with the rest of their game.
  • High__Rolla Posts: 765Subscriber
    I think a LAG style can work in these games, but IMO most players go about it the wrong way by focusing on pre-flop LAGIng. Away to exploit NITs is that their tight hand ranges post flop make them easier to read. For example, a NIT who limped in early position should never have two pair on a Q832 board. In addition, most are not TAG so they are rarely making an aggressive play without a hand or premium draw. So, I think you can exploit this with a LAG style post flop, especially on the turn and river.
  • FoldtoMyRaiseFoldtoMyRaise Posts: 312Subscriber
    edited December 2015
    I agree with High___Rolla that most of the profit comes post-flop where these nits have very unbalanced frequencies and ranges. You have to figure these guys out and then develop an individual strategy that works. Flopzilla is your friend. So I suggest doing some studying off the table. I have played in these nitty games and they are quite beatable but not at the same rate as a loose wild table.
  • FreeLunch Posts: 1,308Pro
    Games are not static. Its games like this where social engineering and knowing how to create action out of nowhere is a key skill.

    These guys are here to have fun and socialize and, room depending, a surprisingly large number of them have a lot more money then you would think given their nitty guy living on social security image.

    As Gandhi wisely said when meditating about poker - "be the action you seek". If you can make the game more fun for them then they will open up and put more money in play.

    As several have said, the day guys do not all play the same - so you really need to know for each person:
    1) why they are there
    2) what they think is fun about poker,
    3) what distracts them,
    4) if they are interested in thinking about poker or just follow a formula,
    5) what tilts them,
    6) how much they are willing to lose each day
    7) do they have a daily win goal they will protect by folding a lot when then are at that goal
    8) will they try to get unstuck or do they not care
    9) are there certain types of people they like to beat and will change their game just to beat them (eg they like to beat their friends or the young guys)
    10) do they play other games and are just bored (I've turned bad 2-5 games into great PLO games - even once a 30-60 stud game)
    11) do they have poker money rules like never call more than x$ with a single pair hand
    12) do they over pay to chase a flush and does how much they will overpay vary flop vs turn
    13) do they think check raise is always strong letting you use it as a semi bluff - or do they also use it as a semi bluff
    14) and a whole lot more.

    If its a table of people who on average are only willing to lose 50bb a day and you cant change that then get the hell out of there. The reality is though that there are plenty of day games that you can change. I agree that there are small things you can do to extract more (delayed cbet. odd overbets, knowing what $ amount they will not call with is big). But in general the best way to maximize money is to figure out how to make the game more fun for them
  • GuccGucc Posts: 17Subscriber
    I agree that 'lagging it up' is just going to result in piling in too much money vs much stronger ranges. I always get a kick out of guys that think they can just take T4s and 'outplay' some 25/8 old dude with a 60bb stack. All you can really do is deny equity vs the weaker parts of their range, realize your own equity because they have no bluff frequency, stack the hands they can't lay down, and make big folds vs their obvious nutted lines.
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