In many poker games, suited connecting cards are a more valuable starting hand than a big pocket pair.
Implied odds are responsible for giving suited connectors the ability to be so profitable in No-limit texas hold’em.
Many of the hands that you will make using suited connectors will be well disguised, and your opponents will not often be willing to give you credit for a big hand. When you make your hand, you will be very likely to win a big pot.
When To Play Suited Connectors
You should only get involved in pots with suited connectors when you are in late position.
Most of the time, you should also fold your suited connectors unless there are multiple opponents in the hand with you. You are not looking to make a single pair; even two pair can be easily counterfeited, since they will most likely not be top two pair. What you are really hoping for is a straight or a flush. If you make a straight or flush while holding suited connectors against multiple opponents, your opponents will be less likely to recognize the strength of your hand. This puts you in a great position to be able to extract maximum value from your hand.
Pay Attention To Game Conditions
Since suited connectors require large implied odds to be profitable, just being in good position with a healthy stack is not enough reason to get involved. You should use caution when getting involved against an opponent with a short stack with a hand like 7d-8d. For one thing, your opponent is more likely to move all in on you if he hits any portion of the flop. In addition, the small number of times you do make a big hand, your opponent will not have enough chips left to make it a profitable play over the long term.
As the blinds and antes increase in a No-limit Hold’em tournament, suited connectors in late position can be a great opportunity for a steal attempt.
You still need to avoid short-stacked opponents when stealing, since they are likely to come over the top with marginal holdings.
Since you expect to be successful stealing pre-flop a percentage of the time, and take down the pot on the flop with a continuation bet other times, you won’t need to actually make your hand every time to be profitable. Of course, if you are called and do make a big hand on the flop, your hand will be extremely well disguised, and you can attempt to extract value from your defending opponent.
Observant opponents will see you showdown suited connectors and think back through the hand about how you raised with 6s-7s pre-flop, and then bet with an open-ended straight draw on the flop. This will make it more difficult for them judge your hand strength in the future.
Make sure you are aware of which opponents are paying attention, and adapting their play to yours.
Understanding your table image and the game conditions are necessary components of playing suited connectors. If you are playing in a short-handed game, suited connectors lose a lot of their value when compared to a full game. You are likely to be playing most pots against a single opponent, which gives added value to high card hands and pairs while reducing the value of more speculative hands.