How To Avoid Angle Shoot In Poker
Poker is a game that has a specific set of rules to offer a fair and safe environment for all players, irrespective of their level of experience. Even when an experienced player beats a weak one, they need to abide by the rules in doing that. But poker being a complex game with multiple variables, the rules fail to come all that happens at the table. Thus, there is always enough scope of angle shooting. In simple words, an angle shoot poker means doing unethical and questionable things that are not strictly against the rules to gain an edge over the other player.
What makes angle shooting a bad thing?
A number of players have the logic that since they are not breaking any rules, there should be nothing wrong with angle shoot poker. However, this logic is fundamentally wrong. There are loads of unwritten rules in life that you are expected to follow, and the same is true for poker. Intentionally breaking the code of conduct to gain an edge will not be looked at very kindly in this world. Players start avoiding serial angle shooters and refuse to sit down with them.
Ways to avoid angle shooting in poker
Poker will always have players who want to cut corners and take advantage of other players. Knowing about common angle shoots, such as the ones discussed below, will help you to avoid them.
You will not be familiar with the term ‘going south’ if you are new to poker. In live cash games, it means secretly taking chips off your table. For instance, a player plays one dollar and wins a huge two thousand dollars’ pot. They might decide they do not want to risk all of it in later hands. Thus, they take a few hundred away from the table when no one is watching. It is not allowed in most poker rooms and involves mild penalty. However, it is hard to prove if you don’t notice it right away.
Intentional hiding of big denomination chips:
Both cash games and tournament bears witness to the common practice of hiding big denomination chips behind lower-value stacks. When doing this, the angle shooter fools the opponents into thinking that they have lesser chips than they actually do, which has a huge impact on someone’s strategy. It is one of the reasons why you will find experienced players often ask others how much they have left. It might feel annoying at first, but remember that it helps in avoiding angle shoot poker. Make sure to protect yourself from the players who have done this before.
Pump fake is when a player picks up a stack of chips and move them forward while holding them in the hand, which seems like they are announcing a raise or a bet. But at the last moment, they will pull back the stack and put that down with the rest of the chips. At some casinos, any forward motion with your chips is binding, while others are not that strict. The goal of the angle shooter is to gauge a reaction from the opponents. Inexperienced players might fold their hands right away when there is a big stack of chips in the opponent’s hand.
Mis-declaring a hand:
Some players start speaking before their cards actually do, and that can make you muck your hands. Suppose your opponent bets, you call, and a “full house” gets announced. You throw the cards in the muck before they turn the hand and later see them display Ace-high. You might get shocked at such blatant lying, but it’s more common than what you might think. So, it is better to not release your hand until all the cards are face up. If you are the first to show, you should table the hands unless you are sure you will not win.
Some degree of angle shooting is always present in poker. In a game that is all about outsmarting the opponents, some degree of angle shooting is inevitable. Certain behaviors are tolerated and acceptable, while others like the ones mentioned here, has to be avoided at any cost.