Daniel Negreanu: Bubble Play Advice

3 years ago
Bubble Play Advice
22 Feb

The tip for this week from Poker Hall of FamerDaniel Negreanu is how best to play while on or near the bubble.

Of course, your chip stack will go a long way in determining the correct plays to make at bubble time. Big stacks will want to add to their arsenal from the little stacks who are more focused on survival and finishing in the money.

Target the Weak

DNegs advises to first identify the weak players whose aim is to merely grab a payday. When such players are seated in the blinds and you have a big stack and favorable position, "you can raise with virtually any two cards," Negreanu said.

However, KidPoker warned against going overboard with that line of thinking. He likened it to taking jabs like a boxer, getting in a few shots when appropriate, but also remembering not to get "sloppy" and surrendering too much of your big stack.

Steer Clear of Other Big Stacks

When armed with a big stack near the bubble, it's best to not get into a protracted war with opponents who also have plenty of chips. One of you may get eliminated without hitting pay dirt, and you certainly don't want that to be you.

Avoiding other big stacks at the bubble is a common sense move. If your ego precludes you from playing that way, it may be that you're not a successful tournament player.

Don't Commit an All-in Sin

Lastly, Negreanu advises not to call a short-stacked player's all-in if you have a big stack and a weak hand. Players with small stacks on the bubble tend to have tighter ranges.

"Don't stretch it," KidPoker said. "Avoid these types of confrontations. Don't let your stack drip."

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Charles is a Chicago native and long time poker player who dusted off his journalism degree and began writing about poker following the events of Black Friday in 2011. He has written for a number of leading poker websites, offering his insights and expertise on subjects ranging from online poker leg...Read more


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