Poker has been around for hundreds of years and has since become a casino favourite. As a result, strategies have developed and evolved, and with them, new betting options. One such strategy is the blocker.
What Is Blocking & Unblocking In Poker?
A blocker means you hold a card that reduces the chances of your opponent having a hand that includes that card or a card of the same rank. This is sometimes referred to as card removal.
Having this card is called blocking because it may “block” other players from forming certain hands.
For example, let us say you hold an 8 of hearts and 8 of diamonds, and the community cards are a 9 of diamonds, 7 of hearts, 6 of diamonds, Jack of clubs and Queen of clubs, and it’s far less likely that an opponent has a straight since your hand blocks half of the potential combos of 6-10 and 5-9.
On the other hand, unblockers do the opposite. They are cards that make it more likely that a particular hand may be created. So while you may have blocking cards, your blocking cards may also be unblocking another hand.
What Are The Advantages Of Blocking Bets In Poker?
A blocker and a blocking bet are two different things in poker. While a blocker blocks certain hands from being made, a blocking bet is a bet you make where you only bet a small portion of the pot.
Poker experts believe you only make a blocking bet if you have a bad hand or are out of position. However, there are several pros to why you would make this kind of bet, some of which include the following:
- Limit the amount of money you may lose - Placing a blocking bet may help you lower the amount of money you may lose if you have a weak hand. When you make a blocking bet, you assume your opponent will call instead of raise. That way, you do not have to deal with a larger pot.
- Getting a cheap showdown - Again, if you have a weak hand but do not wish to fold, you can make a blocking bet to force a showdown assuming no one calls or raises your bet. In a showdown, everyone remaining has to show their cards. So, if you indeed have a losing hand, you marginalise your losses.
Overall, making a blocking bet can help you minimise your risks and potentially control the pot size slightly while also extracting some valuable information from your opponents.
Is Blocking A Good Idea?
Blocking can be a good idea if used correctly and optimally. Blocking can be particularly advantageous if you have a weak hand or think you have the second-best hand. By making a blocking bet, you limit the risk of losing too much money.
Additionally, a blocking bet can confuse your opponents, particularly if they are not experienced, because they may have difficulty determining if you have a strong or weak hand.
The trick is to not make too small a bet that raises eyebrows but also not too high that it puts you at a disadvantage.
Poker is a volatile casino game involving many strategies, and no strategy is ever just good or bad. All of them depend on how you are using them. The same goes for the blocker bet strategy. If you know how to utilise it properly, it can bring you good results.
Use it sparingly and strategically, and know your limits. Looking to play poker online for real money? We have a great selection of online poker games here at Wizard Slots online casino. Or you can try our blackjack or roulette games if you prefer. We have something for everyone!
*All values (Bet Levels, Maximum Wins, etc.) mentioned in relation to this game are subject to change at any time.