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Bovada, Playing vs Unknowns, Ranging and Mastery vs Overload | Q&A | #46


Sky Matsuhashi

on March 18, 2016

In this Q&A I answer 4 listener Q’s about Bovada online poker, Playing vs Unknowns, Ranging and Mastery vs Overload.

Download and listen to this episode as you follow along below.


Bovada Online Poker, Playing vs Unknowns, Ranging and Mastery vs Overload | Q&A | #46

Question 1 (5:32)

Hello Sky, my name is Kong Li. Talk about a unique First name growing up. Anyway I found your podcast very informative and please keep up the good work. It was through your podcast that convinced me that I need a software like PT4 to improve my game, find leaks and profitable spots. So I used your affiliated link to purchase a copy of Poker Tracker 4. I am writing to see if you can send me copy of you new HUD for PT4. I attached a copy of the invoice. Also, in the recent podcast you talk about a way to import hand histories from Bovada into PT4. Can you go over for me to how to do that? I appreciate your help and hope you have great success in your poker and personal goals for the coming future.

-Kong Li

  • The Ignition Card Catcher is perfect for anyone wanting to learn from hands played at Ignition, Bodog or Bovada.

Question 2 (7:35)

Thanks Sky

I really appreciate your getting in touch with me. I would like to get some help with online small stakes post flop.  On Bovada you can't get a large HUD sample size on anyone. I can generally get a pretty good idea of pre-flop vp$i and pfr after 2 -3 orbits but on cbet and fold to cbet and steal/fold to steal stats I never really get enough data. I'm a small winner as of now at .10/.25   What is your suggestion?

Thanks, Mr. Happiness 

  • A limited number of hands means you need to play with more of an emphasis on population tendencies.
  • Start Bovada sessions with 1 or 2 tables, and watch/take notes for two orbits before opening more tables.
  • Mark each player's type (LAG, TAG, LP, TP, donk, fish, reg, etc.).
  • For stealing, the opponent's PFR number should help here, as the higher it is the more likely they're a stealer.
  • For fold to steal, the looser and more passive they are the less likely they'll fold the blinds.
  • The population tendencies and the player type will tell you how they'll likely cbet or fold to cbets.
  • One thing to remember is pre-flop tendencies often flow over into post-flop play.

Question 3 (13:00)

Hello , here is one you might be able to answer and advise.

I'm in a $1/2 NL table at Foxwoods. I'm in the big blind , 3 limpers before me. I look down I have pocket Aces. I raise in the BB to $18, two folds and one caller. Flop is 10 9 2 rainbow, I cbet the flop to $20 (yes a bit lower than half pot).  I get raised to $45.

What would you put the player on?  I put him on AA, KK, QQ, AK or AQ.  I did not put him on 10 9

I know I didn't make a good read on the hand, but would you have put him on 10 9?


  • His flop raise means he isn't scared of you.  Hands could be TT, 99, 22, T9 or some other TP hand, or even an open-ender if he's capable of that
  • Have you ever seen this player make raises like this as a bluff?  Is he capable of raising your cbet on a draw, with TP, an overpair, or as a bluff?
  • All the hands you put him on are hands I don't think he'd have given his pre-flop play.
  • Ranging opp's is all about what cards you've seen them play in the past, how they've played different hands previously and the actions they've taken so far in the hand.

Question 4 (16:20)

When you are studying a concept as in depth as Hand Reading, and more specifically doing a course like the Hand Reading Lab from Splitsuit, do you think it’s best to give it 100% of your study time and attention? Should we leave other concepts to the side for a while so we don’t overload our poker brain? Will this possibly help with the learning curve?


  • Yes, you should absolutely concentrate on one topic at a time.
  • Keep in mind the idea of Mastery vs Overload.  Get really good at one topic before moving on to the next.
  • Whatever you’re studying should be taken from one topic to the next, with each building upon what was learned previously.

Podcast Challenge

Here’s my challenge to you for this episode:  Plan your studies for next week.  Choose one topic, the one that you think your game will benefit the most from, and devote the entire week to that one thing.  How to study it is up to you, but stick with the one and study it until you know it inside and out.  Don’t move on until you do.

Team America

Right Said Fred – I'm Too Sexy


Sky Matsuhashi

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