Pot-Limit & No-Limit Poker (Anglais) Broché – mars 1999
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1: The book does not concentrate on NLHE. This is very true and it would seem to be a cogent criticism. When I started to play in casinos, the only big-bet game at Foxwoods was an occasional five-dollar blnds pot-limit HE game. Now the lists are long for NLHE at four different levels and there is no pot-limit anything. So the sections of the book on other games and on pot-limit would seem to be wasted.
The bare fact here cannot be denied but there are good reasons to understand the other games and the other betting structures. Poker games have continually gone in and out of fashion. While I think NLHE will be a very important game for a long time, I don't think people are well-advised to be so narrow in focus that they cannot adapt. Pot-limit Holdem is a useful game to understand but you probably won't get much opportunity to play it. Pot-Limit Omaha is an extremely popular game. Some think it is the wave of the future. Even if you don't agree, and I don't, there will probably BE a wave of the future and it is good to be adaptable. The sections on NL Draw and Lowball, PL stud and, shudder, London Lowball all have worthwhile analysis of poker situations that can come up in any game. I won a lot of money in NL Draw and Lowball at one time and any reader of this book will have a major advantage if someone decides to call one of these variations in a dealer's choice game. In fact, given the massive dealer advantage of draw games, there is no reason to call anything else when you deal.
And it is fun to read about London Lowball, even if you would never want to play it. For the same reason that horror movies can be fun, even if you never want to be IN one.
2:The sections on NL are somewhat dated. This is mainly true because Reuben and Ciaffone have probably never played in game where there was a one hundred big-blind limit on the buyin. Such games are very common on the internet and were very common in casinos until recently. The do require somewhat different strategies. In fact, they require very restricted and unimaginative play.
Fortunately, most casinos have raised the buy-in limits somewhat.In deep buy-in games or in games where you and some of the other players have won enough to play deep-stack all streets poker, the advice from this book will aid you well.
3: They advise getting all your chips in on a draw.
Well, they do, under certain conditions. In fact, this is going to be right under those conditions and profitable in two ways. If you push your twelve out (flush and a gutshot or similar) draws very hard, you will win about half the time when there is a showdown. Because your opponent will fold sometimes under the pressure, you make money playing this hand that way. When you have fifteen outs or more, you are a favorite when it goes to a showdown.
Also, once you have been seen to play a hand this way, you never have to slowplay a flopped set or even a straight or flush. You get paid every time.
4: Some peole don't like the style and organization.
This one I can't refute. I don't agree with it but that is a matter of taste and of what helps you learn. I even agree that it is not laid out in the style of a textbook. I just don't find it that important.
This title of the book is slightly misleading. It could most accurately be described as "Selected Topics in Pot-Limit & No Limit Poker." Unlike, Advanced Hold `Em and the 2005 Harrington books, there is not a tight or consistent narrative here. Forty-three mini chapters concerning various issues in No Limit and Pot Limit Poker are offered. Notice that I said, as does the title, poker as opposed to hold `em. The authors, in this edition, added three pages of hold `em specific material to make the work more current, but that still might not be enough for some who have absolutely no interest in razz, stud, or Omaha. That's a shame though as being aware of other forms of poker undoubtedly makes one a better player.
Overall, Pot-Limit & No Limit, despite its bare-bones approach, extensively enlightens readers concerning the intricacies of expert level play. At its best, these discussions are extremely technical and situation specific. It's hard not to profit from surgeon like advice like the 5/10 rule for calling raises. I've heard that one cited by players many times. Although, Stewart's brief psychology chapter was my personal favorite. I consider myself fortunate for never having to have played against him. I also admired the fact that he concedes that much of poker simply cannot be verbally explained to beginners. There is an intuitiveness within the successful rounder which no manual can instill.
With 2 authors with admittedly different styles, it was interesting that the No limit holdem section only offered one style of approach to the game.