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Score Some Winning Strategies with Sweep It Poker

July 8, 2024
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Have you tried your hand yet in Gala’s casual poker game, Sweep It Poker? You can play right in your browser for free!

The more chips you win each day, the more entries you’ll stack for the Weekly Sweepstakes, increasing your chances to win $GALA! 

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Here are some basic poker tips for anyone looking to enhance their gameplay and increase their chip stack. Even though it involves elements of luck, poker is a game of skill.

Tip 1: Play to Learn

Poker is one of the most popular games in the world, not only for its intrinsic connection to money, but also for the multitude of strategic nuances that come with the game’s intricate balance of math and chance.

The best poker players will still tell you that they don’t know everything about the game. To some degree, the more you play, the more there is to learn.

“The more you know, the luckier you get in poker.”

-Doyle Brunson, poker champion and best-selling author

Doyle Brunson played professional poker for over six decades, until his death in May of last year at 89 years old. If you want to learn poker from a master from the absolute pinnacle fof the game, check out his books, Super System and Super System 2.

The moment you start thinking of yourself as an experienced poker player, you’re opening yourself up to untold vulnerabilities. Don’t get cocky– It never hurts to acknowledge that you could be missing something, especially in a game that’s so deceptively complicated.

Tip 2: Play the Opponent

You may have heard the standard poker advice, “Play the opponent, not the cards.” This is more than just stock advice – It’s a system to live by. Poker is not a game about your hand. Your hand is merely a single aspect of your strategy, while your opponent has the power to bring you victory or defeat depending on how you deal with them.

The “Showdown” event in which players must reveal their cards to determine a winner is rarer than it seems, especially on a player by player basis.

Consider that an average player in a Texas Hold’em ring game (9 seats occupied), will only participate in 2 showdowns per 100 hands dealt– That’s only 2%. But the other 98% of the time, that player still had cards in their hand. What they did with their chips in those other 98 hands matters far more than the showdown hands.

When you’re able to spot the patterns in your opponent’s betting habits, you can truly start to play the opponent. You can always make guesses about the cards they’re holding, but you’ll never know for sure until the rare moment of showdown. With your hands, the best you can do is to play aggressively when the odds are in your favor.

In the same way that you want more chips in the pot when you have the nuts, you want to see more cards with fewer chips when you think you might have a losing hand. More community cards (turn, river) might turn your hand around and make you a winner, but no matter what you’re doing to the pot, you don’t want your opponent to know your position. Assume that every player is playing from that same place of mathematical responsibility, betting hard when their hand is strong and softening up when their hand is weak while also trying to hide their intentions. 

Remember – Chances are that neither you nor your opponent will have a chance to see one another’s cards. That means that whoever played the other more effectively will take down that non-showdown pot. Only 20-25% of hands in a ring game will even make it to a showdown at all, so patterns tend to matter more than hands.

Tip 3: Chase with Caution

Whether you’re calling preflop with a couple of low suited connectors or holding out to see the suit you want on the turn, chasing a draw is generally a risky move.

“Chasing” in this context means that you have most of a good hand. If the cards you want fall, then you’ll almost always have the winning hand. If they don’t, you’re sure to lose if it comes to a showdown.

Some draws are worth chasing. For example, let’s say you have 5♠/6♠ and you get to see the flop with no preflop raise. If you see a flop of 3♥/4♣/10♦, you’re in a good position to chase your straight if the price is right. 

Any 2 or 7 will make your straight, so if you can see the turn, go for it. Additionally, there’s currently no chance of someone drawing out a flush on you to beat your straight. However, by calling instead of raising, you’d run the risk of revealing that you’re on a draw and trying to minimize the bet. Therefore, when chasing a straight like this, you’d better be ready to commit some chips to the chase, then ditch the cards if it loses economic reasonability.

Be very careful with draws in every situation. Someone with a made hand is almost certainly looking to price you out and take the pot before your draw hits, and they’ll almost always recognize when you achieve the hand you were drawing for.

With straight and flush draws, it’s better to play against others who are chasing draws than to chase them yourself. If you are chasing, present your betting actions as having the made hand already.

One unlikely advantage to chasing straights and flushes can come from playing in early positions on the table. This will help mask your intentions, lending legitimacy to your check and waiting to see how the rest of the players will act before you decide to pay for your draw.

Join the Sweepstakes

There’s still over two days of play time to accumulate Tickets for the 44th Weekly Sweepstakes event that wraps up at 7am PT on Thursday, July 11th!

The total prize pool for each weekly Sweepstakes is 113K $GALA!

Win as many chips as you can each day to gather entry Tickets… G

Play Sweep It Poker now on Gala Games (no download needed)