How To Play Suited Connectors Grinder Style

Let's assume that you're a baby TG and need a quick primer on what the term “suited connectors” means. To put it simply, suited connectors are any two consecutive cards of the same suit (7 and 8 of spades or 4 and 5 of hearts as an example). In the proper situation (which we will get into shortly) and if played properly, this type of starting hand can be a devastating blow to your opponents bankrolls.

The key to effectively playing suited connectors lays mainly in understanding when to play them. To illustrate we'll discuss a few situations where it may be profitable to play suited connectors and at least one spot where you NEVER want to play suited connectors.

Situation 1 - Playing Suited Connectors With Ace On Flop

You're in the cutoff and two limpers have called the BB, you peek down at 67 of spades and make a 4X raise. The blinds fold and you get one of the original limpers to call. The flop comes 3d 5h As. The limper checks to you so what do you do here? You've got a gutshot straight draw and a backdoor flush draw. A TG will almost always c-bet here and here's why – Assuming the limper has a weak hand like KQ off, what can he do here? If you're holding the Ace he's practically drawing dead. If you hit the board at all he's an underdog to hit on the turn or river. If he DOES have an Ace (and it's probably weak), he may smooth call. That's ok as well because you've got two more chances to hit a big hand and bust him. Even if you miss the turn, you may want to continue firing at the pot. His weak ace may shrivel up and get tossed into the muck. If you do hit the hit the river, make a value bet and get paid off. If you miss again, use your read on the guy and bet or check behind/fold accordingly.

The idea here is when you raise with suited connectors, you have multiple ways to win the pot. If there is a big flop with an ace on board, you want to use the continuation bet and represent that ace in hopes the other player will lay down their hand.

Situation 2 - Suited Connectors In Early Position

You’re in early position and look down to see Td Jd and call the blind. You get three other callers including the blinds. The flop comes 9d Ts Qs. A TG will normally lead out and bet here. You’ve got an open ended straight draw and middle pair and a pot sized bet will hopefully run off any spade draws. Even if you do get called with the guy that has another Queen in his hand, you have outs to crush that hand. If you get raised here after leading out, it’s likely wise to lay down your hand. Remember, three of the cards that make your straight draw or perhaps give you a set will also make a spade flush if your opponent is chasing that. Your read here is vital, so play the turn and river as you see fit.

Situation 3

Your UTG +3 and the first player to act limps. You limp right behind him holding QsKs only to see the button raise. The original limper sits in the tank for a bit before re-raising to about 25BB’s. Here’s an easy lay down for most TG’s. First of all, that move screams pockets KK or AA for the limper and even if you call, you have no idea what the original raiser is going to do when the action reaches him. Now in certain tournament situations a call may make sense here but for the purpose of our little exercise, we’ll pretend it’s a cash game and the other players are very tight. You have to give at least one of them credit for a monster and let go of your hand. The tournament scenario is a little different and we’ll talk about that topic another day.

Summary For Playing Suited Connectors In Texas Holdem Poker

In summary, you can truly put a beat down on many a player by deceptively playing these suited connecters. Double suited connectors in games like Omaha are the holy grail because of the multiple possibilities that they afford you with the right flop. Again, that's a topic for another day but just remember a few key points as you learn to play these suited connectors–

1. Try to play small ball and keep control of the pot until you hit your hand. The sneaky nature of playing suited connectors will often make it tough for an opponent to put an accurate read on you.

2. Be prepared to drop your hand, even if it's a big draw if the bets are pricing you out of the pot. Understand that concept of + and – EV, it's critical when playing suited connectors.

3. Become a master of deception so that when you're playing suited connectors, the opponents that you put off balance due to this will pay you off so many times, you'll be able to go get a solid platinum TG card protector in no time!