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LAG vs TAG in No Limit Holdem

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Loose Aggressive (LAG) Vs and Tight Aggressive (TAG) in Cash Games

 The two most successful approaches to NL Hold’em can be identified as TAG (tight aggressive) and LAG (loose aggressive). The TAG style is widely considered to be the best way of playing small stakes NL, as you play fewer hands and avoid difficult decisions. A TAG player has stats along the lines of 25/15/3. LAG can be the most profitable way to play poker at any level, but very few players are good at it at smaller stakes. It is a difficult style to master, and takes a lot of concentration because you are playing so many hands.

For learning the differences betweeen LAG vs TAG play in tournaments and the advantages or disadvantages of each you should probably read LAG vs TAG in MTTs.

Standard Strategy with AA

 Successful LAG play is determined by the quality of reads made by the player. A LAG by virtue of the fact that they play more hands requires much more energy and intensity to play than a TAG does, meaning they lose concentration faster. A tired player will suffer, and be more prone to tilt.  In NL, one small mistake can ruin hours of good work and crafty image building, so a LAG has to be careful playing extended sessions. A TAG plays less pots so can play longer sessions – with greater levels of concentration than a LAG can.

TAGs should be just as aggressive as LAGs, but more selective in the hands they play. You won’t find a TAG raising 5-6 suited UTG. A TAG has to make the same reads, but will command more respect than a LAG, and has easier decisions. A TAG can be more confident laying down top pair, top kicker than a LAG because he knows the villain isn’t playing back at him because of his table image. Conversely, a TAG offers less action, and will be less likely to be paid off with his premium hands.

 So which style should you plump for? Well, it depends. A small stakes NL player should focus on mastering a TAG style. This is because a LAG player, with his relentless 3/ 4 bets and double barrelled bluffs relies so much on fold equity, which just isn’t there at smaller stakes. Players are more curious at smaller stakes, and will look you up with marginal holdings. Before you adopt a LAG style at the high limits, you should master the aggression factor associated with TAG. This means post-flop aggression – making strong continuation bets with AK on a dry flop, and even firing 3-bullets against a tight passive player.

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