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Optimizing Ace King: The Right Strategy for Playing Poker’s Most Complex Starting Hand

Ace King is a massively profitable hand. In fact, AK is in the top-5 percent of winning hands and accounts for a good chunk of your win rate. But despite that fact, many players are confused about how to approach this hand. Should you 3bet it preflop, or just call it? Should you play the suited and offsuit versions the same, or differently? Should you c-bet with air, or check instead? And how many streets of value is top pair really worth?  

Most players struggle with AK due to small leaks in their strategy. So Optimizing Ace King (OAK) doesn’t look to give you a bunch of memorized plays and tactics. Instead, OAK shows you how AK fits within your strategy and ranges. This prepares you for playing AK, among other hands, in a variety of spots and under a variety of conditions.  

James “SplitSuit” Sweeney and Adam “W34Z3L” Jones co-wrote this book to take an in-depth look at poker strategy through the lens of a single hand. Concepts include 3betting, 4betting, cbetting, barreling, GTO vs. exploitative play, and deducing lines from GTO solver output.   

You will play AK 99.9 percent of the time you are dealt it, and since it makes up such a large chunk of your win rate, doesn’t it make sense to strengthen your approach with it? Each chapter builds upon the last, walking you through preflop play, flop play (when you hit, miss, and flop draws), and turn + river play. Plus there is an entire chapter full of examples and a chapter dedicated strictly to tournaments.   

If your win rate with AK could use a boost, invest a few chips and see the ROI in no time at all!

Harrington on Cash Games: How to Win at No-Limit Hold’em Money Games, Vol. 1

The first years of the poker boom were fueled by the interest in no-limit hold em tournaments. Recently, however, players have been gravitating to another, even more complex form of hold em no-limit cash games.

In Harrington on Cash Games: Volume I, Dan Harrington teaches you the key concepts that drive deep-stack cash game play. You ll learn how to tailor your selection of starting hands to your stack size, how to recognize the increasing deception value of supposedly weaker hands as the stack sizes increase, and how to use the concept of pot commitment to your advantage as the size of the pot grows. After laying out the general concepts behind deep-stack cash game play, Harrington shows you a complete strategy for post-flop play, and then teaches you the difference between post-flop play against a single opponent and post-flop play against multiple opponents. If you play no-limit hold em cash games, you need to read this book.

Dan Harrington won the gold bracelet and the World Champion title at the $10,000 buy-in No-Limit Hold em Championship at the 1995 World Series of Poker. And he was the only player to make the final table in 2003 (field of 839) and 2004 (field of 2,576) considered by cognoscenti to be the greatest accomplishment in WSOP history. In Harrington on Cash Games, Harrington and two-time World Backgammon Champion Bill Robertie have written the definitive books on no-limit cash games. These books will teach you what you need to know to be a winner in the cash game world.

Exploitative Play in Live Poker: How to Manipulate your Opponents into Making Mistakes

Many poker players can make good decisions at the table with a reasonable frequency. Nevertheless, there are numerous situations where even very experienced players behave in predictable ways. These deeply-ingrained habits lead them to make mistakes. The problem is that these situations won’t often arise at the table by chance – you have to make them happen. Exploitative Play in Live Poker is a ground-breaking work that teaches you how to create the circumstances where your opponents will be likely to blunder and how to exploit them when they do. 

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