Controlling the pot in NL Holdem will reduce the chance of being bluffed or put under pressure by an opponent. It is especially important when holding a hand of marginal strength such as one pair. It becomes even more important if out of position, and in deep money situations.
Keeping pots small when holding a weak hand or any hand threatened by the board, without showing weakness and losing control is the overall goal.
Keep things in perspective, try and bet just enough on the flop so that you can bet a bit more on the turn and river. Without putting your stack at risk in the process. As long as your bets increase a reasonable amount on each betting round or stay close, you will avoid showing weakness. And can keep control of the pot.
This is especially important on the river if out of position and a third suited card hits, the board pairs or becomes threatening in anyway. If there are many opponents a check and fold may be correct. But with one or two opponents a reasonable size bet should be made in order to keep control.
This will make it tough for someone to try and bluff you out of the pot since they will be concerned that you may have a big hand. If you are put to the test and raised, chances are they have it. And comes down to how well you know the opponent.
Betting AA and KK
Betting QQ and JJ
Avoiding Trouble Hands
Playing Small Pocket Pairs
Limping in with Big Pairs
Playing a Draw
Bet Size with One Pair
Betting Strategy with Two Pair or Better
Betting Strong Poker Hands with many Opponents
Main Menu for NL Strategy from controlling the pot