What Is A Fish In Poker?In short a poker fish is simply a bad player. Whenever you sit down to play poker, you as a 'good player' should always make sure that you have fish sat at the table and in most cases, sat to your immediate right. However it's not as simple as one size fits all as there are a few variations of a poker fish (bad players) and you will need to know what you're looking for in order to adjust to them and exploit their mistakes.
Common Fish Found In Poker
Calling StationThe first and probably easiest to play against is refered to as a 'calling station' and these guys just hate to fold. They will call you with any draw, pair or sometimes ace high on the flop that you will make most of your money against them by betting when you have a good hand and making your bet sizes close to pot size or even overbets in some cases. What you never want to do against them is bluff. Why? Because they hate to fold and so your bluffs against these guys will not be profitable. Get them sat down on your immediate right and look to play lots of pots where you have position on them post flop and thus have more control over what happens to the pot post flop.
The RockThese guys are also reasonably common place in poker and the are called rocks because getting money out of them is a bit like getting blood out of a stone. These guys play an extremely tight range of hands (play very few hands) and are sticking to premium hands in order to churn out a small win rate. These guys fold a lot, you can steal their blinds with nearly any two cards when your on the button as they just give them up without a hand (and you'll have a hand a lot less often than you'll have junk). You can raise their blinds all of the time and even when they do call, you can c-bet (continuation bet) nearly all flops as they again give up a lot when they miss (which is more often than they hit). However, if these guys do start building a big pot against you, beware as they seldom do it without a solid hand. If you find yourself getting all your money in against a true rock, make sure you have the nuts or as close to it as possible.
The ManiacThese guys can give new players a lot of trouble because they are complete action junkies that simply love to put you in tough spots for all of your chips. These guys are hyper aggressive, play lots of hands and play them fast. They very often look for weakness in their opponents and when they sense it will do all that they can to push them off hands. Another common mistake that they make is overplaying their mediocre hands, the idea of pot control doesn't even exist with these guys so more often that not they end up spewing off chips left, right and centre. You really want these guys on your right when you're at the table because if they have position on you, they will make your life hell and are very likely to send you on monkey tilt. If you do find yourself in a hand with them, feigning weakness is a great way to set them off but once you make a play designed to induce actions (bluffs) from them you have to follow it up and call them down when they end up shoving on you. These are the kind of guys that I would check to with a hand if they showed any sign of strength in the hand as they'll more often bluff off a stack than they'll have a bigger hand.
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