Sports & Gaming

Betting Tactics

Phil Ivey

Lesson time 27:46 min

Betting in poker is all about maximizing value and minimizing risk. Phil reveals his take on tactics like overbetting, bluff catching, and three-betting, and for the first time, shows how he’s used these tactics in past hands.

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Topics include: Blocker Betting · Overbetting · Hand Review: Overbetting · Three-Betting · Three Bet Isolating From Position · Inducing and Catching Bluffs · Hand Review: Induced Bluff Vs. Polarized Value Bet · Capping Preflop Calling Ranges With Bet Sizing · Manipulating Capped Ranges


[MUSIC PLAYING] PHIL IVEY: Betting in poker is all about maximizing value. You need to know how to get worse hands to call. ANNOUNCER 1: He's reaching for chips. This is exactly what Phil wants. PHIL IVEY: And even better hands to fold. ANNOUNCER 2: Well, Mike clearly thinks he's behind. He's folded. ANNOUNCER 3: You've got to hand it to Phil Ivey. He really disguised that hand very well. PHIL IVEY: It sounds simple, but it's one of the most challenging parts of the game. You have to understand that every bet has a reason or a purpose. When you've mastered betting tactics, you will be unstoppable at the table. ANNOUNCER 2: That is sheer power poker from Phil Ivey. - Finding the right bet size, I think, has to do with your opponent and what amounts you think it is a he'll fold for, or what amount you think it is he'll continue for. Instead of checking, you may lead out. You may bet a smaller amount because you don't think you'll get raised, and you think that maybe they might bet more than that. And you're going to call anyway, so that's a good tactic that a lot of the good players use, where they want to control the sizing of the bet, because they don't want to call a full pot-sized bet. So they'll bet 1/3, or they'll bet 1/2, because they feel like their opponent's going to bet, and they don't want to call that big of a bet. So I think that's a pretty good tactic to use. But you need to be careful, because sometimes you'll get raised. So that's another very delicate situation, and you really need to know your opponent well. Turn example would be like say I had a king-queen and the flop was 10-jack-3, and the turn came a 4. And I thought that if I checked, my opponent was going to bet. So I would bet maybe 1/3 pot or 1/2 pot, looking like I want to keep them in, because I don't get priced out of the pot and what I do want to stay in the pot. So I would bet less to try to keep them from betting more. And this is very, very advanced stuff. And for those at home, I would be really careful with doing this, because especially a lot of times, you'll end up getting raised and not really sure what to do. And you could get in some very tricky situations because of this. Until you get really comfortable with your game, you should really just really work on the fundamentals and playing a position and doing things are going to make you a better poker player. Concentrate on your reads. Concentrate on your opponents. Concentrate on being aware-- being self aware of everything around you. [MUSIC PLAYING] I think you could the flop when in situations where you think you're either going to call or fold. OK? So-- or sometimes what you think is a pretty clear fold, you may throw in an overbet just to balance it. Also, if you think you have a hand that you have a better hand than they do, but they have a slightly worse hand than you, that may be a good time to overbet. Say a board comes ace high and you have li...

About the Instructor

At age 38, Phil Ivey became the youngest player to win 10 World Series of Poker bracelets. Now the man known for his enigmatic table presence—and widely regarded as the world’s best all-around poker player—gives you unprecedented access to his mental game. Learn poker strategy, pick up new poker tips, and review hands with the player who’s won more than $26 million in live tournament earnings.

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Phil Ivey

Phil Ivey opens up for the first time about his poker strategy and teaches you how to make smarter moves at the table.

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