Poker Donkeys – The Automaton Donkey

The automaton donk is the player that does not pay due attention to the nuances of the poker game, this player thinks he can win poker playing on auto-pilot. Well automaton, you are wrong! The sharks have you very much on their radars just the same as if you were a poker fish, any donk will do and until you get yourself out of auto mode, you are just that, another poker donkey!

Autoplaying hands
When multi-tabling, it often makes perfect sense, if you intend to fold to pre-select fold before your turn pre-flop.

  1. However it is incredibly donktastic to do this when in the big blind, i.e. selecting check/fold. On the flop, if someone has limped in preflop, you have basically given them free information that you have a very weak hand in the big blind, if high cards come on the flop, one of your opponents can now bluff with very little fear of getting called from you. Furthermore, they also know that in future that when you are in the big blind they might be able to do a high value expectation cheap steal in the knowledge that you may have selected autocheck/fold again.
  2. Post flop it gets even worse. Autochecking/folding on one round is telling your opponent bet the next round and the pot is yours. Not only that, it is absolutely terrible for your meta game. Why? Well the next time you don’t pre-select your action, your opponent who is aware that if you had a thrash hand you would have preselected check/fold, now this time he knows you have at the minimum a mediocre hand or a draw and he is being told to proceed at caution. That’s just a whole load of free information for your opponent. So don’t be a lazy donk, don’t pre-select check/fold!

Playing too methodically
Poker players can get themselves into trouble when they get too comfortable. When other players become familiar with your game then it’s important to do something unexpected from time to time. Example: Say you have been seen recently doing a couple of blocking bets of around 40% of the pot on the river with good but not great hands – the kind you would fold if facing a serious raise.

The next time you reach the river facing one opponent, if you bet that 40% of pot again if your opponent is observant he will ‘know’ that you are doing a blocking bet. Because he ‘knows’ you are doing a blocking bet the two likeliest responses from your ‘astute’ opponent are fold or raise, his hand-range for a call in this spot is narrow; so this is the very time you should only bet 40% of the pot when in fact you have a monster that welcomes a re-raise or on a stone-cold bluff as there is a high chance that your opponent will fold a mediocre hand as he doesn’t want to pay you off.

Were you to have the same hand that you were making your blocking bet, then depending on circumstances either check or bet a different amount.