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In Poker Calling is Losing

In order to win money at the online casino poker table you need to call your opponent’s bets, right? Wrong. While in the technical sense it’s true that in order to win some pots you need to simply call, this only applies on the river or when you’re looking to trap someone.

One of the biggest mistakes poker players make when they’re trying to climb the poker ranks is to adopt a passive style in order to limit their losses. However, there are two major problems with this approach: playing above your means you’ll make bad decisions; moreover, playing scared opens you up to exploitation.

The most successful players in the world are constantly applying pressure on their opponents because this approach gives them more opportunities to win pots. In contrast, players who simply call only give themselves a chance to win the pot when they’ve got the best hand. Additionally, they put themselves in a position where they can get outdrawn because they aren’t protecting their made hands.

For example, let’s assume a player with A-K called a raise pre-flop and hit top pair on an Ad-3d-4s flop. At this point it’s likely they have the best hand and calling certainly wouldn’t be the worst idea. However, with a number of draws on the flop there’s a danger that on the turn or river their hand could get outdrawn. Thus, while calling with the best hand isn’t always a bad idea, it’s important to raise in order to get maximum value and protect yourself – especially on dangerous boards.

One of the most common misconceptions in poker is that in order to limit your losses you should call more than raising. However, the opposite is actually true because in reality you cost yourself more money both in potential winnings and total losses. By calling you won’t win as much as you could have done if you were aggressive. Moreover, if your good hands get outdrawn, you can lose a lot of money.