Donkey in Poker

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If you know a thing or two about poker, then you must have heard players being called things like “calling stations”, “rock” “nit” and even “maniac” at a poker table. But one name that sounds pretty offensive is “donkey”. Yes! A certain category of players are referred to as a donkey in poker. Now, in this post, we have detailed who is a donkey poker player, the common signs of a donkey in poker and top 2 tips for playing and winning against donkeys.

Who is a donkey poker player?

When it comes to poker, a donkey is kind of a derogatory term that is often used in reference to an unskilled, weak and inexperienced player. In other words, a donkey in poker is basically a loose-aggressive player who lacks the key poker skills and strategies. The players who attract the label of donkey are usually the ones who are highly ignorant towards poker rules and not think about things like pot odds, reading the opponents moves or position. They typically go around frittering their money and are generally extremely difficult to read or comprehend.

It is imperative for you to remember here that in poker there is a difference between a weak player commonly called a “fish” and a “donkey”. This is because weak players generally play tight and often fold their hands in situations when they should have continued to play, potentially due to lack of experience. The donkey in poker on the other hand is a player who is highly incompetent and generally displays stubbornness and brashness in his actions.

Signs of a donkey in poker

Most of the donkey poker players usually exhibit a range of general characteristics such as:

1)      Donkeys generally overplay cards that have significantly low odds of winning. For instance – a donkey player would normally prefer to play a 3-5 rather than fold the same as his experienced and skilled counterparts would do.

2)      Donkey poker players usually call most hands irrespective of their table position and the cards they have been dealt.

3)      These players frequently raise and re-raise other player’s bets even though they do not stand to benefit from doing so.

4)      Most donkey poker players are highly unpredictable in nature and as such do not follow any standard style of play. Since these players are highly inconsistent it is close to impossible to have a read on them.

5)      Donkeys tend to go all-in quite frequently even when they have been dealt moderately good hands.

Top 2 tips for playing against a donkey poker player

Now that you have got a fair idea about the meaning of the term donkey in poker, we have detailed the top two tips for playing against a donkey in this section.

Play tight

As unlikely as it might sound, the only way to play and win against an aggressive donkey player is to stay cool and play tight. Why? Because a donkey in poker generally plays with any two cards and the moment they hit a card on the board they start coming up with incessant raises and re-raises. Herein, if you try to play with a weak hand there is a high chance you will be called and since you are not sure what the donkey poker player is holding you can never assume your hand will win. After all, in poker, nothing can be more terrible than expecting your high card to win the pot, only to be crushed by a pair of 5s in the end, and that too against a donkey in poker. On the contrary, if you truly hold a premium hand then bet aggressively and try to make your opponent fold by putting pressure on him.

Don't bluff

When it comes to playing against a donkey player in poker, one key strategy tip is to never bluff. This is because donkey poker players in general are not just any other weak players like fish. These players are especially ignorant, stubborn and downright unpredictable. Therefore, it is quite likely if you are up against a donkey, he will not understand your bluff and will not throw away his cards especially if he has hit the board.

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