MCU poker tip: Checking medium-strong stud hands

An important strategic weapon in seven-card stud is checking medium strength on the final river card when an opponent’s exposed cards look weak. The purpose of this check is twofold:
(1) Weak-looking cards often suggest that a straight or flush is possible, so you don’t want to be betting kings-up into a hand that will likely fold unless it beats you; and
(2) You will be giving your opponent a chance to bluff and lose more money, particularly if your hand also appears weak.

The second point is important. You should beware of weak-looking cards when bet into what look like reasonably strong hands. Most players won’t attempt to bluff with weak-appearing boards against apparent strength, because they think you will almost certainly call. But if it looks like you might also be weak or trying for a straight or flush, some opponents will try to bluff quite regularly. You should check on the river to give them this opportunity

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Mike Caro

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Known as the “Mad Genius of Poker,” Mike Caro is generally regarded as today's foremost authority on poker strategy, psychology, and statistics. He is the founder of Mike Caro University of Poker, Gaming, and Life Strategy (MCU). See full bio → HERE.


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