Jonathan Little wrote an article for “Card Player” in which he dealt with the issue of being slowrolled. In his opinion we can use it to our advantage if we just learn how to react properly to it. Sometimes a slowroll can be used against our opponent who decided to have fun at our expense.
Slowroll is a situation when a player knows he has the best hand but on the showdown when facing a big river bet acts as if he was hesitating about the call. The decision is a no-brainer as they know they won so it's all about tortuting the opponent with false hopes.
Slowroll theoretically has no impact on the game, because best hand wins on the showdown, but it can hurt a player who is still thinking he can win the hand. Many players see slowroll as a personal attack, which can lead to anger and even tilt.
When you get upset because of a slowroll, then you have to look deep inside yourself.
Why does it make you nervous? Maybe you were enjoying the thought of winning, have already counted the chips and someone “took it away” from you? Remember the money was not yours and this loss does not matter in the long run.
Why should you be bothered by the fact opponent was waiting a few moments before showing the hand? He did not break any rules. No one has to show the nuts quickly just because it is the best hand. Keep in mind that people often do not realize what they have.
Why should you even care if somebody “attacks you” this way? If you are gonna take everything so seriously both in life and poker then you will be doing exactly what your opponent expects. Our goal is poker is to play better than others. Our job is to destroy them. Many players will do whatever they can to beat you. All that is in accordance with the rules. It's not unethical. It's their job.
From what we know players decide for a slowroll for three reasons:
- They play with friends and want to make the game more emotional
- They want to tilt the opponent
- They know they tilt when someone slowrolls them so they assume opponent will react the same exact way
If you play with friends, mostly for fun and the stakes are small then slowroll is not bad. Your buddies keep poking at you and it's a great way to pay them back.
To tilt you
If somebody thinks they can tilt you this way, then it's important information for you. They think you care much about money and do not understand the maths behind poker. Use this information to modify your strategy and use your opponent's misconceptions.
Because they also tilted
If you are a good player and people know it and yet despite the fact try to slowroll you, then they probably had problems with tilt in such spots and try to tilt you as well. You are better than that – slowroll does not matter. Information is what matters. Perhaps your opponent has a problem with it – maybe he plays too high stakes. It's actually nice to get slowrolled as it tells you something about your opponent.
How to react to a slowroll?
Instead of getting angry try to understand why your opponent went for a slowroll. Adapt to it. Anger is no answer to anything. Your opponent wants you to tilt, right? Do not play along. Stay calm!
When a slowroll is done for fun – enjoy it. Poker is about having fun!
In other cases you have at least two reasonable options to chose from:
1. Observe and do not react. Act as nothing has happened (because it has not). Usually the slowroller will feel stupid and others will start laughing at him. This is a nice feeling when you reverse the roles.
2. Try acting as if you were tilting. When Jonathan Little tries this trick, most opponents know he rarely tilts, but as a recreational player you can put on a show. When players really tilt, they bluff more and opponents try to catch them by hero-calling. Adapt to that and make sure your range has more good made hands. Remember you need to act as if you were tilting, but you have to remain peaceful. If a good hand comes and opponent tries to catch you bluffing, you will be ready for him. If not, just play conservatively for the next hour or so.
This article is strongly based on the original post published by Jonathan Little. To see the original content please click the following link.