Deep stacks versus short stacks in Texas Hold’em

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Posted on: June 12, 2020 6:23 pm EDT

Different stack sizes determine how you should play, but a short stack doesn’t mean you’re done

In a poker tournament, having a deep or short stack will change the way you need to approach your game. They are both quite a contradiction; a short stack can be very nerve-racking while a big stack can make you feel overconfident. The key to success in Texas Hold’em is to manage your stack in a way that you always try to find the perfect medium between loose-tight and making a profit.

Some players that experience a shift in stack size tend to either go crazy or play too tight, which doesn’t work in most of the online poker events. A key aspect is to be able to get comfortable with the size of the stack you have or else you are risking dumping your chips off to any of your opponents. Both stacks allow a bit of robotic and systematic play, but only a big stack opens up options for trying something new and play without fear.

A small stack needs another approach, one that is more like go big or go home. If you can manage to master how to play with a short stack, then playing big stacks becomes a lot easier. Of course, it is never fun to have a short stack, but it gets better is you know what you are doing. Your only goal in mind if you have a short tack will be to build it back up. The best way to do it is to look for opportunities to either double up bets or steal the blinds. Be careful when stealing blinds and make sure you are in a good position or your situation might not be improved.

On the other hand, when having a deep stack, you can take a more aggressive approach even if you get a couple of hard hits. The problem can be when too radical approaches are taken, either being too laid back and relax or going to wild on the hands. Keep in mind that deeper stacks make blinds bigger so you can also steal juicy blinds without needing to see the flop.