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How to Play Aces in Pot-Limit Omaha: A Beginner's Guide

5 April 2017, By: compncards
When an amateur player picks up a couple of aces in Pot-Limit Omaha, they want to jump out of their chair.

Some are ready to bet the house because they still view the game with a bit of a Hold'em mentality. This is Omaha Poker we're talking about, though, and you need to think differently when playing aces.

Naked Aces

The worst type of hand you can get with a pair of aces in PLO is what is known as "naked aces." With naked aces you have very little or no coordination with the other cards.

An example of this would be As-9c-Ad-6h. All you have with this hand besides the aces is a very weak potential straight draw that needs a double gap filled. This hand is one you need to play very carefully and maybe even dump if there's a lot of action.

I know that sounds counterintuitive to some of you, but if all you have is naked aces and you're facing two or more players putting in multiple raises, you're behind statistically due to the various draws that the game presents.

Medium-Strength Ace Hands

Hands with medium-strength aces are those that have straight possibilities and maybe one flush possibility. The straight possibility may or may not be a nut straight draw.

Hands such as As-2s-Ac-10d would fall into this category. You have two straight chances and one flush chance.

Players facing heavy action and holding this hand need the nut flush to start developing or flop an ace to consider continuing past the flop. 

Big Aces and Double-Suited Aces

Your best ace hands are those that are double-suited and high. For example As-Ks-Ad-Qd is a great hand with aces.

All the high straights are covered and you have two nut flush chances. Even a hand such as As-4s-Ad-9d is strong as it is double suited. However, if the board is straightening other than the wheel, it will be vulnerable.

You will almost always play double-suited aces strong and double-suited aces with two other big cards you will want to build big pots.

When evaluating the strength of your hand with aces, look and see what else you can draw to. The more you have to work with the stronger you can play the hand. 

Avoid playing naked aces aggressively unless you like giving money away. Playing these hands right will help you grind out larger pots.

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