Playing The Big Stack In Tournament Poker Shifting Gears

Playing The Big Stack In Tournament Poker Shifting Gears

When you get a hold of a big stack in a tournament, there are many different ways of effectively playing the stack in order to continue accumulating chips with reckless abandon or calculated aggression. The problem is many players who are used to only seeing one player use one style of poker (especially if they’re used to shallow stacks at their tables often) will begin to adapt and learn the style you’ve been using and attempt to use it against you in the long run. Being able to shift from one big stack style to another while you have it can be the key in keeping the chips flowing into your stack while preventing your opponents from setting traps and catching you off guard.

Many times, once a player gets a big stack, a few general assumptions are placed on the big stack by other players; they’re going to play many more hands, they’re going to be much more aggressive, and they’re going to gamble a bit more. This holds true for both live poker and poker online; unless you’ve been playing like a super rock, in which case, nothing much will change in their minds. While it may seem second nature to do all of those things with more chips, sometimes it may be best to lay low for around and continue playing tight; it’s a major curveball that can throw off some players that expect you to get aggressive and show up with weaker hands at showdown, thus allowing you to get paid off by weaker hands for a short time.

Once you’ve played a round or two in your defined big stack style, it’s best to make an abrupt shift to a different style and at situs qq you can do that with ease as there are multiple games and millions of players that you can test out your skills with. Maybe you’ve been taking flops liberally for the last two orbits, seeing 40% of flops with limps or calls mixed in with your raises. The next few orbits, eliminate the limp from your repertoire and only call or raise, and do it less liberally; try to only see 20% of flops for an orbit or two to tighten yourself up, without players fully catching on to your gear shift. This works wonderfully if you’ve won a hand or two in the last orbit with some substandard starting hands, like 67o or Q8s that you played in a multiway pot; people tend to forget those facts and simply remember, wow, he played 67o? What a trash hand; he wasn’t even in the blinds!

This constant shifting every few orbits will keep opponents from ever focusing in on your true intentions in a particular hand, only having the actions from exposed hands to work with. So, if you’ve been showing monsters at showdown, you shift should tend to be towards more aggressive gears later in the hand, when players will suspect you have monsters more often than you really will. If you’ve been showing garbage or bluffs, it’s time to tighten up and only come out with big hands for a bit. Keeping that flow going and keeping aware of your table image is the key to scoring big stacks and keeping them in tournaments.


Seth is a professional blogger and is a Poker enthusiast. He wants to share his wisdom with other poker players to help them improve their game. He also loves to write about art and technology as well.

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