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Game Selection Basics

One of the most important things to remember about poker is that the purpose of the game is to make money, and to do that, it is best to select a game where there is the greatest skill difference between yourself and your opponents. This should be obvious, but what isn't obvious is that this may require you to select a game other than what you would describe as your best. A large proportion of today's players picked up on poker in the post-Moneymaker boom and as such will have seen or played little else than no-limit hold'em, be that tournaments or cash games (similarly to how a decade ago, it would be rare to find any game other than limit hold'em spread).

So before sitting down at some NLHE game, look to see whether there are other options in games or formats that you are competent at. The chances are that even if, for example, Omaha, isn't your best game, the relative level of skill means that you have a greater edge in this game, and hence you make more profit. For example, a player who made a recent WSOP final table commented on someone berating an opponent who, in a SHOE event, beat him in a hold'em pot with A4s, but then proceeded to play all kinds of hands in Omaha/8 which anyone who has played the game for so much as an orbit will know are complete trash. Which game do you think is easier to make the money at?

If you're a competent hold'em player, the most profitable learning you can do is to learn the basics in lots of other forms of poker (and also, if you're a no-limit specialist, how to play limit and pot-limit). You never know when knowing decent Razz starting hands might come in useful.

EEYORE


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