Learning to take advantage of your position at the poker table is something of utmost importance, even from your first couple of hands played. Learning this early on can save you a lot of money and heartache.

Whether you play online poker or live poker, understanding the advantages and disadvantages of playing from each position is going to make or break your poker sessions. This is valid regardless of the type of game you play, the position is just as important in cash games as it is in SnGs and tournaments.

In poker, but especially in online poker where you can only rely on what is displayed on your screen, your position translates to information. And as you know, information is power. If in live poker you can also gather information by looking at the players and trying to read them, in the online version of the game this is unfortunately not an option.

We all know that some positions are better than others, and it all stems from the number of players who get to act before you pre-flop and post-flop. The principle is simple: the more people act before you, the more information you have about their intentions before you make your decision to take part in a pot or not.


What is the Dealer position in poker?

.While I am sure everybody knows this by now, the dealer is the player sitting to the right of the small blind, which in turn sits at the right of the Big Blind. It is considered by most pro players to be the most advantageous position in poker due to the fact that it acts last post-flop and has a couple of benefits pre-flop as well.

Pre-flop, if the action is folded around to the dealer, he has the option to perform an attempt to steal, which can be quite profitable, especially in poker tournaments where the blinds increase constantly. Not only does the dealer have the advantage of being able to scare the Blinds into folding pre-flop, but also gets to act last post-flop, which puts him in a beneficial position of knowing what the other players in the hand are doing.

While the information was not verified and doesn’t come from official sources, the dealer position was decided to be left last to act in poker a long time ago, when there was no actual dealer to give out the cards. Players took turns being the dealer, shuffling the cards and giving the cards to the other players, posting the flop, turn and river. In order to not hold up the game and to give them a chance to think about their decisions in the game as well as doing their “dealer” jobs, they were left last to act.

 

How to play from the Dealer position?

When playing in the dealer position, aggression is the name of the game. It is the most profitable position at the poker table and you should take full advantage of all its benefits.  Here are a couple of the most important pro tips for making the best out of your position.

Open with a wide range

Your opening range (the hands you play) should always be much wider in late position. This means you can open with middle pairs, suited connectors, and pretty much any decent hand you can think of. That is because you have a great opportunity to steal some blinds if the action is folded to you, but also because you have the advantage of acting last on the flop and later streets.

Steal blinds pre-flop

Steal! Steal! Steal! Especially in poker tournaments, where blinds increase at certain intervals, stealing blinds is how you make most of your chips that keep you alive in the late stages of the tournament. Depending on how tough the players on your left are and how big their stacks are, sometimes a simple min-raise does the trick. Be careful what the other players at the table are doing before you act, especially the cut-off.

Raise more than you call

When playing in position, you have a lot more options, mainly because you have more information. More often than not, you are much better off raising than calling bets as the dealer. You will deal with a lot of re-steal attempts from the players in Small and Big Blind and the fact that you get to act last on the flop and later streets puts you at an immense advantage.

Raising is more profitable here than calling because if a player is trying to re-steal his blind on the flop for example and he bets with air, getting just called doesn’t stop him from making a new attempt on the turn. And that second attempt is going to be a lot more expensive than the first. Getting raised after the first bet will stop him from making new attempts and will put the tough decision on him.

Final thoughts on the Dealer position

Playing from the Dealer position is a lot easier than from any other position in the poker game. You get a chance to see what all the other players in the pot are doing, you have all the necessary information before you decide whether to continue playing the hand and you have a chance to see some free turn and river cards or even showdowns.

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