Checking to Induce a Bluff

by trikkur

You should consider checking to induce a bluff whenever you are out of position on the river with a good hand, but believe your opponent has a missed draw or is floating you. Your opponent would always fold his weak hand if you would make a value bet on this river, so you should check to him and induce a bluff instead. The villain will not be able to win the pot if they just check behind and see a showdown, which leads them to making a large bluff to steal the pot. You can make the call of this bluff and win an extra value bet from hands that you could not have by just betting.

induce bluffs

Check and let the villain hang himself

Here is a quick video of me showing off checking to induce a bluff. These clips are from the Trikkur 1 and Trikkur 6 training videos. Sorry about the low video quality on the first two hands. At times, I am even hesitant to make the call after checking to my opponents, but if you induce the bluff you must make the call. I only picked a few hands where this play works, but don’t worry if you are wrong a certain percentage of the time. It isn’t going to work every time, but you need to look at your opponent’s entire range and make the play based on that.

Watch Video Lesson – Checking to Induce a Bluff

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Remember to only check/call the river and never make a check/raise in this situation. A check/raise would accomplish nothing if your opponent does have a missed draw like you think. They will obviously fold to your raise and you will win the same as if you just made the call. However, if your read is incorrect and your opponent does not have a missed draw; they will be able to win a much larger pot from you because you made that raise. This is why you must always think a step ahead (or more) on what your opponent’s action will be in response to your checks, bets, and raises.

More Poker Strategy

If this article interested you, there is another great one about range merging that you will enjoy. It covers how to play with bluff catcher type hands and how to counteract an opponent that is constantly using this move against you. I would also recommend signing up for the 7-day free trial at CardRunners.com. You can view their entire collection of videos in those 7 days and if you make the decision to cancel during that time; you will not be charged.