Play Poker Like the Pros (Review)

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Post  PoWdA on Fri Mar 21, 2008 9:26 am

I don't care for Phil Hellmuth, his attitude annoys me, but the book would definetly be a good read for a beginner looking to get into other games. I never considered Hellmuth a mixed games guy but his advice on Omaha Hi/Lo and Stud in his book was pretty spot on. The Pot-Limit Omaha Hi section and Stud Hi/Lo sections aren't too bad either. As far as his Limit Hold Em section is concerned I think Phil gives way to aggressive of a strategy. I think if you played Limit Hold Em like Phil suggests you may find yourself in some bad spots and you could lose some money. It isn't all bad, but it is definetly a highly aggressive strategy he portrays in the book. I would definetly read the section, but I would never play Limit Hold Em by this book. I personally am bored by NL sections and since it has been a few weeks since I have even read the book, I can honestly say that I cannot remember anything particularly exciting or new in the NL section. Nothing bad, but nothing shocking.

One thing I should mention which Phil introduces in this book are his animal types. The Jackal (loose aggressive), the Elepahnt (calling station), the Mouse (tight, conservative) and the Lion (the pros, rare). He uses them througout the book to explain how different players react in different situations. It is a good system. So for example he may say "you are in late position when a jackal raises and a mouse re-raises, what do you do?" It really helps that by labeling the players so simply he in a sense "gives you a read" on that player and you can then act accordingly. I like the way he incorporates the animal types.

So basically I was very suprised! Simple but effective. His book is no Theory of Poker, there is nothing super ground breaking or shocking, and that is why I suggest this book for the beginner. He gives a very simple glance at the basic aspects of the strategies for these games which I think can be very valuable to the beginner. Simple strategy without being overwhelming, I was very suprised with Phils book to say the least as I was expecting another NL Hold Em book and ended up with a back to basics lesson in other games.

I reccomend this book to the new player. To be more precise, I reccomend this book to the NL player who is trying to branch out to other games. While there is very little "highly advanced" strategy in the book the basics he puts forth on the Stud and Omaha games are great for the player looking to expand thier game knowledge. I see this book as a good jump off point for that player. With a little basic knowledge on all of the most popular games, I am suprised to say that Phil did a good job here.
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Post  dexman1349 on Thu Jun 12, 2008 12:37 pm

I just got done reading this book and I have to agree with Danny's review. Outside of the cash games I've played with most of the guys here, I've never played Stud games and have effectively no real idea on the basic strategy involved. I tried some of the concepts online last night at a .02/.04 Stud hi/lo ring game and managed to hold my own for about two hours (ended up down about .60). His strategy certainly helped get past some of the beginner's dumb plays (but not all).

Overall I found it to be a good lunch-hour read. I think there are a few concepts he points out in it that I had learned on my own but had not been able to effectivly explain as far as the NLHE portion goes.

Like Danny says, nothing groundbreaking and nothing very complex, but still helpful.
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Post  PoWdA on Thu Jun 12, 2008 1:44 pm

If you are getting into stud hi/lo buy SS2. As a matter of fact, buy SS2 anyway. I think the only sections in SS2 not worth reading are the NL Hold me section by Doyle and the tourney section (not to be confused with Jennifer Harmans Limit Hold em section which is top notch). Todd Brunsons Stud 8 section is simply the best I have ever read on the game and I always have to give a shout out to daniel negreaneus Triple Draw section which is the strategy guide on the game.

Basically if you are playing Stud/8, get SS2 and read Todd's section. It is an incredibly informative read.
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Post  idh78 on Thu Jun 12, 2008 2:10 pm

speaking of DN, does anyone have his new book yet? power hold em or something? that is one I am going to try to read here one of these days.
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Post  PoWdA on Thu Jun 12, 2008 2:25 pm

I have heard of it Ian, that is about it. I am sure I will read it eventually.
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