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Every once in a while, beginning players will ask if they should fold pocket aces before the flop. There are a few times when you should, but they are incredibly rare. Before discussing what they are, let me answer this common question:
Poker novice: Suppose a well-known pro is in a big multi-table no limit Texas hold ‘em tournament. On the very first hand, she is dealt AA. Much to her surprise, four players raise all-in before she has a chance to act! Should she fold? Wise expert: Folding here would be virtual poker, as in “That's virtually the dumbest thing I've ever seen!”
It's true that the pro will be knocked out of the tournament over 50% of the time if she calls. But when she does win, she'll have five times the starting stack. No one is good enough to pass up that kind of gamble. In the next tip, I'll discuss a few times where it actually is correct to fold AA before the flop.