WSOP Insights: Why Razz Was an Integral Part of My Legal Education

These "up cards" in seven-card stud can assist the attentive player in a few ways. From Paris With Love: Well a short blog posted very late is good news! The highest door card has to bet first spades are the highest, followed by hearts, diamonds and clubs. How thrilled would I have been a few years ago to have my name on signs at the WSoP?

2. In stud, there are individual exposed cards for each player

What do you think?

Can you imagine how great it would be to have your choice of all the hotels on the strip to stay at during the series? To have events running at different rooms?

To have something more than the poker kitchen and a starbucks within reasonable walking distance? We might actually have fish walking in off the street to play sit and gos. Which brings me to my only real complaint for the day.

But this was not that kind of situation. After attempting to explain the situation, the dealer went right to the terminology in the TDA rules. He leaves the table? Meanwhile a very competent and accomplished friend was fired without reason after five shifts from the Rio earlier this week.

There was certainly some grumping and complaining at the table, but it was overall pretty friendly for a Razz table. The game of the day seemed to be to throw in an oversized chip and see what people did acting behind you.

Then you could decide what you really meant when you threw in that chip. How thrilled would I have been a few years ago to have my name on signs at the WSoP? There are a few four foot tall blow ups of the cover of Bluff Magazine in the hallways at the Rio, and my name is on the cover between Mike Caro and Jennifer Tilly on the bottom left. If Mike is the brains he is , and Jen is the good looks she definitely is , then what the hell am I?

The Razz event was also right next to the final table area which is damned fancy this year, so we got to hear a loud announcer talking about every hand of another tournament while we tried to play poker.

I think Todd Brunson was heads up with someone when we left at 2: I know he was playing a lot of pots, because I could hear the announcer through my earbuds all day long and I heard his name a lot.

These exposed cards also help players narrow the range of possible hands of an opponent. They additionally help the observant player better determine the odds of drawing certain cards. In hold'em, you only see your two hole cards and the five cards of the common board.

In stud, you can frequently see all seven of your cards and at least ten or more additional cards of your opponents. This gives you a much better idea of the cards that remain unseen.

If, for example, you are drawing to a flush, your odds of getting a suited card on the next card are greatly diminished if many cards of that suit have already been folded. A skillful stud player can take those folded exposed cards into consideration when deciding on the play of a hand. This and other factors tend to inflate the size of the stud pot by the time it reaches the final betting round, making it usually incorrect to fold to a bet on sixth street and the river — even with only a long-shot chance of having the best hand — as the excellent pot odds make a seventh-street call in stud almost automatic in most circumstances.

By the second round of betting in each game, this imbalance is reversed: Accordingly, stud players tend to make their most important decision about whether to play on third street — that is, when they see their first three cards. Meanwhile hold'em players may be more likely to wait until the second round of betting — that is, seeing the flop before deciding to release their hand to a bet.

In hold'em, players sometimes know with certainty that they have the best hand on the river, as the river card is known to all. Similarly, hold'em players can sometimes save a bet when the board makes it likely that their opponent who is on a draw has hit his or her hand, and they can fold to a bet. In stud, this is rarely the case. With the last card down, the conclusion of the draw is concealed, making it usually correct to call a final bet, both because of the uncertainty of the opponent's result and the size of the pot relative to the bet.

Accordingly, stud players must be more prepared than hold'em players both to chase their draws and to call down their opponents. Finally, position in hold'em is fixed for the entire hand, and it is also known in advance. In stud, with the beginning bet of a round dependent on who has the highest exposed hand or in razz, the lowest exposed hand , position changes from round to round and is thus unknowable in advance.

While a hold'em player surely uses an understanding of position in a particular hand to determine a hand's relative value and what the betting action of an opponent is likely to mean, a skillful stud player needs to think about position within the context of each round of betting.

As a practical matter, since position changes from betting round to betting round, it is generally much less a factor in betting decisions in stud than in hold'em.

Admittedly, these are very broad generalizations about no-limit hold'em and seven-card stud games, but they are nonetheless useful to keep in mind, especially for those familiar with hold'em but less so with stud.

Ashley Adams has been playing poker for 50 years and writing about it since He is also the host of poker radio show House of Cards. Everybody needs an account at one of these online poker rooms! They're the biggest, the best, and we get you the best poker bonuses.

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