A 7 Card Stud Strategy You Can Use At Online Casinos

A 7 Card Stud Strategy You Can Use At Online Casinos

7 Card Stud Online Casino Strategy

7 card stud has been one of the most popular poker games in the world for nearly a century, as the game has been enjoyed by millions of poker players all around the globe for decades. In recent years, 7 card stud has taken a backseat to Texas Hold’em in terms of popularity, but despite the dip in play, 7 card stud remains one of the most played poker games on the planet.

While some people look at the Texas Hold’em boom as being bad for 7 card stud, that isn’t how I see it. To me, more people playing poker is good for poker, no matter what game they are playing. With Texas Hold’em dominating the poker landscape, we see far fewer resources available when it comes to 7 card stud strategy, as many of the top poker experts in the world have focused their attention on Texas Hold’em strategy, not 7 card stud strategy. That leaves the door wide open for players that are new to the game to do their homework and scale up their knowledge of the game to become a winning player quickly.

Finding good resources for 7 card stud strategy isn’t always easy, but you are in luck, as at TheSportsGeek, we pride ourselves on having world-class experts in every area of gaming, and it just so happens that TSG staff writer Jason Grey is a 7 card stud strategy specialist!

In this article:

We are going to provide TheSportsGeek’s top-5 7 card stud strategy tips! While there are a lot of different variations of 7 card stud, in this article, we are going to focus on 7 card stud strategies that are applicable to all forms of the game.

Let’s get started by highlighting what I see as the single most important 7 card stud strategy, being aggressive!

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7 Card Stud Strategy

No matter which variant of 7 card stud you are playing, these top-5 7 card stud strategies are going to improve your game in a hurry!

Be Aggressive!

As someone that has spent their entire life in the poker industry, both as a professional poker player and a casino operator, I have seen a lot of players come and go over the years. While there are countless different strategies that can be used to beat the game, there is one trait that all winning players share. They are aggressive!

Poker legend Doyle Brunson once said that poker is war, we just pretend it is a game and in order to win the war at the poker table, you must be aggressive!

That is especially true for 7 card stud, as you need to be relentless when it comes to keeping the pressure on your opponents. Don’t give free cards. Punish players for limping. Hammer weaker players with a barrage of bets and raises.

Being aggressive is of utmost importance when playing 7 card stud and I don’t know a single long-term winning player that isn’t very aggressive.

If you don’t have a hand that is good enough to raise, you should just fold. Calling is weak and you need to do it as little as possible. Bets, raises, iso 3 bets, these should be on page 1 of your 7 card stud strategy playbook, as you must be ruthless if you want to be a winner.

Play Tight On 3rd Street

There are a lot of nuances to 7 card stud and I rarely want to speak in generalities, as all decisions are going to be dependent on the specific situation that you find yourself in. But the one part of the game that is actually fairly straightforward, is play on 3rd street.

Very early on in my poker career:

I had a more experienced player tell me the most simple and sage advice that I have ever gotten at the poker table. He told me that if you start with crap, you end with crap! I am sure that at the time he didn’t realize how profound that advice actually ended up being to my poker career, but the longer that I play 7 card stud, the more I agree with him. With how 7 card stud is structured, using antes, not blinds, you aren’t forced to play hands like you are when playing Texas Hold’em.

Yeah, you do have to post that ante every hand and you are also going to get stuck with the bring-in on occasion, but those forced bets are very small compared to the big bets later in the hand, and you don’t at all get punished for playing a tight 7 card stud strategy.

Please Note:

Playing tight is a very broad term and tight play looks a bit different depending on which 7 card stud game you are playing. But as a general rule, if you find yourself in a spot where you are nearly certain you are behind, you should just fold your hand and live to fight another day.

Knowingly playing from behind is a recipe for disaster when playing 7 card stud and I am always shocked to see how many players willingly throw good money after bad when playing cards.

An Example:

An easy example of this concept can be illustrated in 7 card stud high, when a player completes with a face card and another player raises with an even higher card showing. At that point, you can have a high level of confidence that at least 1 of those players has a big pair or better. Yet, I consistently see players cold call those bets with a smaller pair, knowing that they are behind.

This is about the worst strategy that you can deploy and if you find yourself doing this regularly, you need to stop it immediately. Stud hands develop slowly, 1 card at a time, and when you start out the hand behind, more often than not, you are going to end the hand behind.

There are times to loosen up when playing 7 card stud, but 3rd street isn’t one of them!

Tight is right when it comes to 7 card stud strategy early in the hand and you want to make sure that if you are voluntarily putting money into a pot, that you have the goods.

Pay Attention To The Discards

Unlike most other forms of poker, in 7 card stud, you get to see what cards might be coming out later in the hand. Well, technically, you don’t know which cards are going to be dealt, but you do know which cards aren’t going to be dealt, as once a card is dealt to another player, it is gone.

Paying close attention to all of the exposed cards is a must when playing any variation of stud poker.

Most players pay attention just enough to know what is going on early in the hand. For example, if they are dealt a pair of wired 6’s, most players are going to quickly scan the table to see if any of the other 6s have been dealt. That is basic 7 card stud strategy 101.

But what happens when that same player that started the hand with a pair of 6s, picks up a flush draw later in the hand? Now they are less worried about how many 6s are missing from the deck, and more worried about suits. Did those 3 players that folded on 3rd street have the cards that you needed? If you weren’t paying close attention, that is a question that you won’t be able to answer, and it can only cost you money.

It isn’t always easy to pay that close of attention, but that is where the men are separated from the boys when it comes to 7 card stud. Poker is a game of incomplete information as there are some things that you just aren’t ever going to know when it comes time to make your decisions. That makes the information that is readily available crucial to capture, as the other players at the table have it, and you don’t.

Don’t Play Too Many Tables

Online poker is awesome.

I love the online version of the game as the action is fast-paced, the player pools are huge, and you have the ability to play multiple tables at the same time, something that you could never get away with in a brick-and-mortar casino.

But when you are playing 7 card stud:

We just talked about how important it is to pay close attention to all of the discards, and if you are playing too many tables, you simply won’t be able to focus enough on each table to not lose value. That’s not to say that you should only be playing 1 table when you are playing 7 card stud online, as even if your per table expected value (EV) goes down, you may be able to compensate for that by playing more games.

But if you find yourself consistently trying to remember what was folded on earlier streets, and you aren’t able to keep up, you need to cut out some of your tables.

For me:

I am very comfortable playing 4 tables of 7 card stud at the same time. But that is me, not you. Some players can play significantly more tables and not lose their edge, I’m not one of them. One of the biggest keys to being a winning poker player is the ability to be honest with yourself, and knowing how many games that you can play, without losing the ability to pay attention closely, is something that you need to be honest with yourself about.

If you are on 6th street and have no clue what was folded on 3rd street, you need to adjust your table levels, as the worst thing you can do is turn yourself from a winning player into a loser, because you are playing too many games.

Calculate The Pot Odds On Every Street

7 card stud is almost always played as a limit game, not no limit. That makes calculating the pot odds much easier, as the bet sizes aren’t going to change later in the hand. It also significantly decreases your implied odds, as you aren’t going to be able to stack someone later in the hand, like you would if you were playing a no limit game.

When it comes to pot size and betting, 7 card stud is quite straightforward. What is in the pot on 6th street is going to look very similar on 7th street, as the pot isn’t going to get that much bigger with a couple of additional bets on the end. I feel like this is a concept that players don’t leverage nearly enough, as it makes calculating the pot odds quick and easy.

Before you ever put a chip into a pot, at any stage of a hand, you should calculate the current, and the potential, pot odds. This might sound like a daunting task at first, but once you start to really hone in your game, calculating the pot, and the odds that it is laying you, will become second nature.

Don’t Give Your Opponents The Advantage

This is another one of those situations where your more skilled opponents have this information at their disposal, and you need to have it as well.

Many Times:

I have seen easy calls turn into folds based on pot odds, and on the flip side, there might be a hand that you are going to instantly muck, that turns into a call, when you realize that the pot odds make the play positive EV.

At the end of the day, knowing the math is going to give you a huge advantage over the other players at the table. Being able to accurately assess your situation, with your potential investment and return on that investment, takes your game to the next level.

Count Bets, Not Dollars:

The easiest way to simplify and speed this up is to count in bets rather than dollars. For example, if you are playing a $10-$20 game, there isn’t $160 in the pot, there are 8 big bets. That keeps the numbers much smaller and more manageable to quickly calculate. The other side effect that you are going to notice when you are paying attention so closely to the game that you always have the accurate pot odds counted, is that your overall level of focus will increase in other areas of the game, further improving your results.

A thinking player is going to beat a non-thinking player more often than not, and you don’t want to lose the battle because you aren’t paying close enough attention to everything that is going on at the table.

Conclusion

With Texas Hold’em dominating the brick-and-mortar poker world these days, the best place to play 7 card stud is now online!

If you are looking for a place to play poker online, make sure that you swing by TheSportsGeek’s online poker sites page, where we bring our readers exclusive deals at all of the top online poker rooms.

Thanks for reading and good luck on the virtual felt, playing 7 card stud online!

PLACE YOUR BETS NOW!

Author: Lucas Carlson