While NL Hold'em is king, there are many casinos that still spread low-stakes Limit Hold'em.
Chances are that at some point you may be sitting in one of these games waiting to play in a $1-$2 game or perhaps you notice that the table is an action table.
If you find yourself in these games, you need to avoid common mistakes to avoid in order to keep from draining your stack in Limit Hold'em.
Below are some mistakes I observed while playing a recent low-stakes Limit Hold'em session in Atlantic City.
- Failing to Raise Calling Stations When Ahead
There were two gentleman in my game that were your stereotypical calling stations. If they had any part of the board, they chased their hands to the river.
During one hand a relatively tight player had position on both these gentlemen. He flopped top set against both players and when one of the players bet the flop, he failed to raise.
He failed to raise on the turn when the turn brought drawing chances. Some of you will say that maybe he was trying to extract maximum value.
I could have believed that on the flop when he had top set against two players. Maybe he didn’t know they were true calling stations.
However, when there were straight chances on the turn, he needed to raise them. There was no sense in just calling.
The river ended up bringing a third straight card and action was checked around. The set held, but he could have gotten a minimum of two extra bets had he realized he was against calling stations.
2. Not Slowing Down When the Draw Hits in Multi-Way Pots
On multiple occasions, players that hit top pair, or even two pair in a multi-way pot, failed to slow down when straight or flush draws completed on the river.
If you have one or more players calling you on the flop and turn, you have to slow down when a straight or flush draw completes on the river.
No, that is not aggressive poker that is being shoved down your throats by every No-Limit specialist on the planet. That is the reality of Limit Hold’em.
Multi-way pots after the flop are primarily due to either bad play or drawing. Slow down when the draw hits. You will save money.
3. Failing to Consider Pot Odds
I cannot tell you how many times I stayed in pots pre-flop and on the flop because I was getting the right price. There was literally one hand where I was on the button with 9-4 offsuit and every player limped.
I knew the blind would only raise with a pair above jacks and the small blind was going to put in $1, so I called.
Did I hit? No. However, in another situation I had 6-3 on the button with 6 limpers. I called and flopped two pair to take a massive pot.
Almost every time I got A-J or better or a pair in late position and raised, every limper would call except for one particular player.
Twice she said that I raised her off a winner. Both times she was in the small blind and would have been at least been 5 or 6 to 1 on her money to call.
When you are in a hand pre or post flop, take pot odds into consideration. Loosen your starting standards if the pot is laying 5-1 or better pre-flop
If the pot is laying good odds after the flop, don’t be afraid to call a small bet to try and catch lucky. Obviously, use your head. 7-2 offsuit, even four handed, is rubbish.
However, if you have 6 or more limpers, take a stab. If you miss, you fold.
You are going to see many more mistakes at lower stakes Hold’em based on the nature of the game and the fact that most players today focus more on NL Hold'em.
Take the time to think about your play and avoid going into lottery mode like many players and you should perform well in low-stakes Limit Hold'em.