Pot Control and River Bet

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This is really a nice play in NL when you are in position. Yes you give a free card but the more important thing is you get to keep the pot smaller so calling the river is much more reasonable. It takes away (for the most part) the big bluff on the river in a large pot. I often practice my techniques at Casinoslots website.

A really nice time to do it is with a Top pair, good kicker type of hand when its HU and you are in position. Lets give an example.

Lets say there is one decent relatively aggressive limper to you and you raise the pot with Qh Jh from the cutoff. Everyone folds back to the original limper who calls.

Now the flop comes
Qd 9s 4d

Opponent checks and you follow through with an obvious continuation bet (I would pot it here) and opponent calls.

Turn is the 3c
Opponent checks, you check.

Now, checking behind here is for pot control purposes and keeping the pot small. Because of your turn check it will entice them to fire a bet on the river with made hands and bluffs and worse hands than you hold. Now a bet on the river doesn’t have as much leverage because the turn was checked through so the pot is smaller and a lot more manageable. You will pretty much call any REASONABLE bet on the river here.

Yes, it gives them a shot at a draw. But even if you bet half pot on the turn to give them 3:1 odds (and call for most draws incorrectly) they have some additional leverage with which to fire on the river with a bigger bet should they choose to do so.

This little play works well against habitual bluffers that are a little to aggressive for their own good. Most of them will fire a value bet with middle pair here, some will bet with air, and some will actually have you beat from jump street.

Against habitual calling stations the best bet is to just milk them on the turn and river and value bet them to death.

This pot the flop, check the turn, snap off the river bluff is a nice little weapon to use in your arsenal when you start to move up into games where pot control begins to have some serious importance upon the way the game is played.