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Poker Tells/Behavior, hosted by: Zachary Elwood Discussions about poker tells, behavior, and psychology, with a focus on live poker.

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Old 01-17-2017, 01:45 PM   #1
DarkOut
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Checking in the dark

Table dynamics aside...is there any general tell here when people check in the dark after preflop but before the flop is laid out? What exactly are people trying to do here...are they generally weak or strong?
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Old 01-17-2017, 01:57 PM   #2
Hardball47
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Re: Checking in the dark

Generally weak. Go ahead and c-bet.
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Old 01-18-2017, 01:36 AM   #3
Mat the Gambler
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Re: Checking in the dark

Heads up when he checks in the dark, I always Cbet in the dark. If it isn't heads up, just treat it as if he had checked on the flop.
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Old 01-18-2017, 10:33 PM   #4
apokerplayer
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Re: Checking in the dark

Not much meaning here. Generally people only do it when they know they're basically always going to be checking to the raiser anyway (most people don't incorporate donk-betting into their strategy).

For example, Phil Hellmuth was known for doing this but it didn't really mean anything, as he basically only did it when he knew he was always going to be checking anyway. And he claimed it gave him an extra chance to read people because the action immediately was on them, putting them on the spot more.
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Old 01-23-2017, 02:17 PM   #5
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Re: Checking in the dark

I used to play LHE with a gentleman who very consistently would check dark if he raised in the blinds with AK. He would usually raise if he hit a pair or two, call if he had a draw and maybe if he flopped trips, and fold otherwise.
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Old 01-23-2017, 10:10 PM   #6
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Re: Checking in the dark

At the home game I attend, I occasionally check in the dark. The game plays with .25/.25 blinds so SB can just check in.

Anyways, If theres a lot of people in the pot (family pot) a lot of times I wont even look at my cards preflop and instead, I will just check. Most cases the BB will also check and after that, I will just announce "check in the dark".

That way, no one can tell what I have and its all a true mystery, it also allows other players to catch up and beat the best preflop hands.

I will also do it if im calling a bet preflop and theres a lot of players.. It just moves the action along. Checking in the dark could go both ways with me, I either have some wild hands like 9-2s, small pairs, or some face cards. Check in dark with 9-2s when it hits is always a surprise to the other player that cant see me having a made hand.
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Old 01-25-2017, 11:02 AM   #7
Loose Larry
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Re: Checking in the dark

Dark checking is really just a ploy to confuse the other players, so it is effective when done to you if you're asking. The main advantage of it is when you smack a flop (or want to represent that you did) and check-raise it. It was a "cool" thing to do for a while. I've done it in multi-way pots before just to throw people off (and because I usually check from early position anyway there).
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Old 01-25-2017, 03:31 PM   #8
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Re: Checking in the dark

I suppose you could class these by whether or not the EP player was the raiser/opener or flatted/check his BB option.

I agree with most of the posts that this player is trying to put some pressure onto the remaining players by creating 'reverse position'. At low stakes players tend to be more afraid of the c/r and may give more free cards if they aren't used to this type of play.

Not that I class PHell as an 'active' player but this move tends to come from a more active player who doesn't want seem weak once the cards come out and then checks.

If this player keeps checking in the dark going to Turn and River then typically this player will have 'something' on the weaker side but will probably go to showdown with you. They also think that you will tend to call more River bets since that's the first time you've seen aggression out of them in the hand. GL
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Old 02-07-2017, 02:24 AM   #9
AceZagSuited
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Re: Checking in the dark

It's a weak play by someone who wants to appear unpredictable, IMO.
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Old 02-11-2017, 11:52 AM   #10
GreekHero12
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Re: Checking in the dark

usualy they have pairs and go for the set-mining or suited connectors
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Old 02-13-2017, 09:32 PM   #11
BDHarrison
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Re: Checking in the dark

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Originally Posted by AceZagSuited View Post
It's a weak play by someone who wants to appear unpredictable, IMO.
I do it sometimes to make it look like I am a weak player trying to seem unpredictable.
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Old 02-14-2017, 10:18 AM   #12
leavesofliberty
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Re: Checking in the dark

This is part of a tricky personality. People who check in the dark are more apt to exhibit another tell, "waiting to pounce". See if after checking dark if he looks down or not.
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Old 02-14-2017, 10:19 AM   #13
leavesofliberty
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Re: Checking in the dark

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Originally Posted by BDHarrison View Post
I do it sometimes to make it look like I am a weak player trying to seem unpredictable.
And, you're a little on the tricky side, right?
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Old 02-18-2017, 10:06 PM   #14
Loose Larry
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Re: Checking in the dark

One time I remember doing this was in a live tournament when I 6x'd the BB and got 3 callers with AKs. I guess since most people here think it looks weak that was a good option since nobody would put me on such a hand. I really was just pissed I pumped it up so much and got so many callers.
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Old 02-19-2017, 03:09 PM   #15
King Spew
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Re: Checking in the dark

Family limped pot, I compete the SB and BB checks. I almost always check-dark as it 'gives me the button' for the first round.
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Old 02-19-2017, 10:41 PM   #16
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Re: Checking in the dark

Hellmuth has 14 bracelets

I am sure at least 5 or 6 is due to his checking in the dark habilities
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Old 02-20-2017, 03:46 AM   #17
leavesofliberty
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Re: Checking in the dark

Quote:
Originally Posted by King Spew View Post
Family limped pot, I compete the SB and BB checks. I almost always check-dark as it 'gives me the button' for the first round.
I have done this. It can be a decent play imo. I prefer now to check light, which people fear less than the dark check, and then raise in lhe.
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Old 02-20-2017, 03:48 AM   #18
leavesofliberty
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Re: Checking in the dark

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Originally Posted by poiulkjh View Post
Hellmuth has 14 bracelets

I am sure at least 5 or 6 is due to his checking in the dark habilities
Helmuth is possibly the best in the world at tells.
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Old 02-20-2017, 03:40 PM   #19
King Spew
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Re: Checking in the dark

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Originally Posted by leavesofliberty View Post
I have done this. It can be a decent play imo. I prefer now to check light, which people fear less than the dark check, and then raise in lhe.
I prefer the dark check in the scenario I gave. Specifically when I checkraise, my hand is still somewhat unreadable. With a light check, the c/r is MUCH stronger and easier to play against.
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Old 02-23-2017, 02:37 AM   #20
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Re: Checking in the dark

I find a lot of people are set mining or playing a fit or fold strategy with their hand when they check in the dark so as previous posters have said go ahead and cbet at a higher than regular frequency as they should fold slightly more than a non check in the dark due to wanting a free card to play fit or fold (most people who check in the dark want the other person to check back in my experience)
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Old 02-23-2017, 03:38 AM   #21
leavesofliberty
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Re: Checking in the dark

With the dark check, I like free cards w suited connectors and believe more people check back to me fearing the sandbag, but usually someone bets.
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Old 02-23-2017, 10:07 AM   #22
leavesofliberty
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Re: Checking in the dark

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Originally Posted by allinonriver View Post
seems like a mongoloid play to me...i'm surprised this thread generated so much discussion
Fill me in.
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Old 02-23-2017, 01:33 PM   #23
allinonriver
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Re: Checking in the dark

the game is about using all the information you can possibly gather to exploit your opponents. by "checking in the dark" (lol) you are giving up the FREE information of looking at a flop.

say for example that you have 22 and check in dark
flop is 2 4 7 with a flush draw.
now normally you would probably lead this flop for a large bet to charge draws and build a pot. but you decided to be of mongolian decent and check it dark so now you're opponent who would have folded to a pot sized flop bet is getting a free chance to check back his 86o and see a turn 5 and beat you.
DUCY now?
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Old 02-24-2017, 01:31 PM   #24
King Spew
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Re: Checking in the dark

Quote:
Originally Posted by allinonriver View Post
now normally you would probably lead this flop for a large bet to charge draws and build a pot. but you decided to be of mongolian decent and check it dark so now you're opponent who would have folded to a pot sized flop bet is getting a free chance to check back his 86o and see a turn 5 and beat you.
DUCY now?
How do you feel about a Dark Check in limit HE.... with the same situation?
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Old 02-24-2017, 01:46 PM   #25
leavesofliberty
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Re: Checking in the dark

In low stakes in particular it is frequently correct to cr oop regardless.
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