Cash Strategy



If you turn on the television to watch poker, then you will likely find a poker tournament. Most poker players are familiar with tournaments because that’s how poker broke onto the scene. The catalyst was Chris Moneymaker winning the World Series of Poker almost a decade ago. However, is a tournament really the place to be if you’re looking for long-term profits? The answer to that question is no. It’s well known among poker professionals that cash game players are more skilled than tournament players. This might sound intimidating at first. If it does sound intimidating, don’t worry, that’s normal. The good news for you is that you will have a big head start over other cash game amateurs. All you have to do is keep reading.


In a cash game, the blinds don’t move. Therefore, there is more skill. You must be very creative in finding ways to get money into the pot so you can take it down. That said, the most important rule for playing cash games is money management strategy, which begins before you even sit down. For simplicity purposes, let’s use a 1-2 No Limit game as an example. This is the most popular variation of No Limit throughout the world. In this game, the small blind owes $1, and the big blind owes $2. The buy-in often ranges between $100 and $500. You can buy-in for any amount you want between those two numbers, but the buy-in numbers do range depending on the location of the game. A disciplined professional will arrive at a game with a set amount of money and leave his debit card at home. This minimizes losses and maximizes gains. For example, if you bring $200 and lose, leave. It’s that simple. If you’re a good player, then you will win more often than you lose. In most cases, your wins will be above $200. Therefore, if you have a winning record and your wins exceed your losses, then you will be a profitable player.


So, how do you win at the actual game? You must be a chameleon, but prior to reaching that level it’s important to practice the K.I.S.S principle first, which stands for Keep It Simple, Stupid. In other words, don’t raise with 9/5-off pre-flop. Stick to premium hands and play tight. It takes a while to establish a tight image, but once you do, you can get away with a lot more bluffs. If you go into the game as a maniac, then you will rarely get away with bluffs, and you will have eliminated a valuable weapon from your arsenal.


If you don’t want to be bored, then you will at least be happy to know that there will be plenty of opportunity for action. That’s because the best players aren’t just tight, but tight-aggressive. If you’re dealt AK in a 1-2 No Limit game, don’t raise to $7. Instead, raise to $15. This will immediately show your opponents that you mean business. If you raise to $7, a pro will pick up on the fact that you’re playing with scared money. That being the case, he will call just to outplay you on the flop, even if he’s holding garbage. Don’t let this happen to you. Remember that the best cash game players are aggressive pre-flop.


These are just some basics to put you on the right track. Implement them into your cash game as soon as possible and you will increase your odds of seeing big profits.