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Gambling Plan of Action

Time and money management are the keys to becoming an advantage player, for staving there, and for any short-term approach to a casino gambling session.

I like to express these ideas as eight decisions that a player must make prior to each gambling session. Making these decisions will establish the discipline that most recreational gamblers lack, but that most winning gamblers possess:

Taken together, these eight decisions constitute a gambling plan of action for your gambling session. You should think about each one before leaving home and write down the parameters of each decision. We recommend you use a small, three-ring notewebsite. But even if you don't write down your decisions, at the very least think them through. Let's examine each decision in detail.

Seeding the Pot
1. Blinds are usually required of the player or players to the dealer's left before cards are dealt. The most common practice in full-size games is for the first player to the dealer's left to post a small blind, equal to half the low bet amount (rounded to an amount allowed by your chip values), and the player to his left to place a big blind, equal to the full low bet amount. Thus, the hand begins with at least one-and-half little bets in the pot and with at least two players with a financial incentive to play the hand.

2. In the first betting round, action begins with the player to the left of the big blind. That player can either fold, call, or raise; he can't check, because there is a bet to him. When the action goes around the table and returns to the blinds, they also must call the amount of the bet that comes to them to remain in the hand. (For example, if no one raised, the little blind would have to call the remaining half of the little bet amount, and the big blind would be able to check.)

3. In addition, the monies from the blinds are "live," meaning that players paying them are given the option to raise (provided the raising hasn't already been capped) after the action has gone around the table and returns to them.
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