People read books. People read books on poker. People read books on poker and they study and study. People read books on poker and they study and study and then they sit down for their first cardroom experience. Then what?
I’ll tell you then what. Then they most likely have chosen to seat themselves in a $1-$2, $2-$4, or $3-$6 limit seven-card stud or hold’em game and nothing seems the way it was promised. What good does it do to know about check-raising, about reraising aggressively to get extra value, or about tricking your foes?
What they don’t know might hurt them. Those foes don’t even know that they’re in danger of being check-raised or what it means when that happens. They don’t understand why a medium-strong hand is OK to play against a single raise, but often not OK to play against a reraise. And they aren’t likely to be tricked, because they don’t have a firm understanding about what a nontrick play should look like.
Instead of going into casino poker games unarmed, as was necessary years ago when no credible books laid out winning strategies for cardroom poker, lots of new players today do something very smart. They decide that they don’t want to waste a lot of money learning the game by trial and error. Why not take advantage of the already-paid-for, hard-learned lessons of others? Heck, if these experts are willing to make their experiences, their research, and their profit-making advice available for less than $50, well, why should novices risk thousands of dollars trying to figure it out themselves?
The big frustration. And that makes sense. You should take advantage of a UFA head start, if it’s available. But with a few exceptions (such as Lee Jones’ recommended book Winning Low Limit Hold’em), everything …