Playing suited connectors

A lot of hands in poker stand out as automatic. You know to play pocket rockets every single time preflop. And you know that you’re supposed to fold 7-2 or 6-3 if someone even hints that they’re going to raise the pot. But what do you do about 8-9 of hearts or 10-J of diamonds? These suited connectors can be big hands if the price is right.

If you’re the type of poker player that takes advice from the pros, then you already know to play these suited connectors whenever you can get into a pot – even if you’re playing 5-6 of clubs. Unless someone’s putting a large portion of your stack at risk, the odds are just too great to fold.

For starters, having two different cards gives you a solid probability of catching two pair. In a short-handed game or reading someone with a strong Ace or big pair, two pair is a heartbreaker for opponents.

A bigger pocket, like the blackjack on line special A-J, is going to tie your opponent’s hands if he catches a 5-6-J board and you’re holding a 5-6. Nobody sees this coming. At best, he’s going to think you’re holding a bigger pair or a set.

Then you have a straight possibility. Middle-of-the-road suited connectors will always have something either in front of them or behind them to give you a reason to play. And if you have a reason to be in the hand, you become dangerous. The only thing more dangerous than a bluff is a semi-bluff.

Save the online slots for lucky spinners. Suited connectors are a pro’s hand because they also bring the flush possibilities out of the woodwork. Catching a five-card board with the A, J and 10 of hearts puts you in the driver’s seat if you’re holding the 6-7. What did your opponent play? K-5? It’s possible, but the odds suggest you win.

Of course, the same poker rules apply with this hand as with any hand – must know when to act and when to get away. But coming in with suited connectors gives you multiple ways to take down the pot. They’re just too good to pass up.