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  • Big Stack Tournament Play, When to Call Short Stack All-In’s

Playing as the big stack in a poker tournament can be both nice, and also tough at points. Most players feel that it is their responsible to call the shorter stacks all-in’s when they shove. Realistically though, it’s actually your job to simply build your chip stack as much as you can, and make calls that make sense. What this means is that you need to base your decisions on more than just the cards that are in your hand, but also on how big the shove is, and the position that the opponent is in. Today, we are going to take a look at a few different tips behind making those big calls, and also general tips for playing with the big stack in a poker tournament, whether it is in an online poker tournament or a live poker tournament.

Position

When an opponent with a short stack shoves from the button when you are in the small or big blind, or when they shove from the small blind when you are in the big blind, it can be a good spot to make the call pretty wide. If their shove is not much after your big blind is already in, then it’s pretty much a snap call with any two cards. For example, if the blinds are 300/600 and your opponent shoves 2000 and you have a chip stack of 30k chips, then calling the extra 1400 chips is a good idea with almost anything. Your opponents’ range is so wide that it will be a profitable call more often than not. Playing position on your opponents shoves is very big, but shoving over the top of your opponent in position is important as well. So in a situation where the spots are switched, and you are sitting in the small blind and the short stack opponent is in the big blind, pushing all in when they have few big blinds left is instant with a wide range of hands. Your opponent is forced to fold with many hands (especially close to the money), and if they call you are in a coin flip in many situations that you may be way ahead in.

By The Money Bubble

Playing with a deep stack by the money bubble is one of the most fun things in the game of poker. Players can consistently put pressure on their opponents, who will be forced to fold almost every hand until they make it into the cash. In some instances you’ll even be able to get players to fold middle to high pocket pairs, and over cards like K-Q and K-J. So raising and three betting is a great idea, and if your stack is deep enough, you can even be the person who can burst the money bubble if you get a strong enough hand. It’s important to remember though not to risk too much of your stack to call an all-in to burst the bubble. The best advice you can get for playing on the bubble as the deep stack though is simply to be aggressive!

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