Betting

Few players differentiate between the betting stakes and the betting pace. The betting stakes are the size of bets and raises permitted. The stakes are established by the house rules. The betting pace is the tempo or frequency of bets and raises. The pace depends on the games played and the willingness of players to bet. Both the stakes and pace determine how expensive the game is . . . or how much money can be won or lost.

The good player is seldom characterized as a tight player. His betting pattern is generally [but not always) aggressive,[ 11 ] and often lopsidedly aggressive. Pushing hard whenever he has an advantage (i. e., at favorable investment odds) and quickly dropping against stronger hands let him maximize his wins and minimize his losses.

When the good player bets, he generally bets aggressively. For the good player, increased aggressiveness advantageously quickens the betting pace, while lopsided aggressiveness advantageously creates confusion and fear in his opponents.

As the stakes increase with each round of betting, the losses of the poor players will increase faster than the potential losses of the good player. Indeed, the investment-odds formula in Concept 11 suggests that a steeper and steeper betting progression within a hand (causing the numerator to increase more rapidly than the denominator) permits greater and greater betting aggressiveness, which in turn allows the good player to bet with poorer and poorer hands. In other words, the good player not only tries to drive up the betting stakes and betting pace within a game, but also tries to create a steeper betting progression within a hand.

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