Correct holdem flop play with a maniac at the table is difficult for some players. Maniacs can really reek havoc at the poker table, and players do not know how to handle them. If correct strategic adjustments are made having this player around can be like having the button all day long!
This strategy works best with the maniac to your direct left or as close as possible to your left. The only time it is of use to have a maniac to your right is in tight games. Where you need to steal blinds pre-flop and bluff post-flop.
The advantages to having a maniac to your left in loose games outway those by far. It is so profitable I often change seats at a cash game in order to have a maniac to my left. I'll say something like "I want to try my luck in this seat" or anything other than the actual reason though (lying is accepted in poker).
A maniac can be used both pre and post-flop. Strategy on this page is for post-flop.
By checking marginal hands to the maniac on the flop. You can see the rest of the tables actions before you must decide how to continue.
A typical scenario where this would be useful is let's say you have KJ and the flop is QJ3 rainbow. There are four players who took the flop and you are in middle position. The maniac raised as usual before the flop. Everyone has now checked the flop and it is on you. Your hand is not very strong but you would definitely call the maniac here. Checking to the maniac let's him bet as usual. The action moves around the table and it is raised by a solid player. KJ can now be easily folded. Finding out where you were at in the hand was absolutely free thanks to the maniac.
The maniac can also be used to thin the field by betting into him and letting him raise. Now anyone with a marginal draw or a hand like middle pair will be looking at less favorable odds. And may chose not to continue. If so you are charging them as much as possible. This texas holdem flop play is best used when holding a hand like top pair that is vulnerable and does not play well against multiple opponents. Especially in no limit where more is at stake.
Another way to thin the field is to check raise. This works best in no limit but will also work in limit holdem if the maniac will make it three bets.
As with any strategy it can backfire. The risk here is that the maniac will not bet at all, and the check raise attempt will fail. Allowing opponents to draw for free. This is especially true if you have not played alot of pots or done it before.
This tactic is very profitable. Especially in extremely loose games. Using the same holdem flop play with made hands (sets, 2 pair, straights and flushes). As with the nut flush or straight draws.
Made hands should never be slow played in loose action games. And draws can be very profitable with multiple opponents when played this way. The main goal is to get as many players as possible to put in as much money as possible on the flop for any of these hands.
This holdem flop play is continued on the page for building a pot . The page refers to a preflop raiser and not a maniac, but can be used for either.
More Strategy on
Position to a Raiser
Playing a Draw
The Free Card
Draws when the Board is Paired
Strong Hands with Many Opponents
Loose or Tight Preflop?
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