Poker freerolls are free tournaments to enter, without any buy-in from you. Freerolls award top finishers with either real money, prizes, or entries into larger and bigger tournaments that also have real money or real prizes. This is a fantastic way to compete and learn poker tournament structure at absolutely no cost to you. These types of tournaments have been around since the dawn of online poker. They’re extremely popular and usually bring in huge tournament fields.
National League of Poker is here to answer all your questions on freerolls, including strategy, what to expect, and how to view tournament success.
How should I expect people to play in poker freerolls?
With huge fields, and no one putting up any of their own money, expect most players to play very loose and very aggressive. Most people, especially in the early stages of the tournament, will play any two cards. If those cards are suited (both hearts) or connecting (7-8), even better for most. The reason the play is also so loose is chips aren’t worth anything, especially at the beginning of a big tournament.
Even in the middle stages of the tournament, expect to see hands you’d never expect to see in a big-money poker tournament be played, and unfortunately, most times, see them win. The key in any tournament is to accumulate a ton of chips. In poker freerolls, there’s no bad news if you’re knocked out or lose a hand. Expect a lot of pots where everyone just calls and limps into the pot for the minimum amount of chips. A lot of people want to play, so it’ll usually take a big raise to get people out of hands.
How should I play?
It depends on your strategy, but it’s ideal if you can to play less hands and only play premium hands. Pocket pairs, suited connections, and Big Ace hands ( Ace-Ten, Ace-Queen), etc., almost always will give you a chance at a nice win. Whatever you do, don’t try and bluff someone until you get too much later in the tournament. Everyone will be calling down with very marginal hands because, realistically, they didn’t put up their own money for the chips in front of them, so maybe the next two cards will connect for them.
Whichever path you take, don’t get upset if you play great and still lose to someone who, in a real poker tournament, would have usually folded their hand way before they get into a betting or ALL-IN war with you. Poker is a game of skill, but every once in a while, people do get lucky. Nothing ventured, nothing lost.
How long is this going to take to win a prize?
Usually, several hours, as field sizes are massive. Even when so many people are playing so loose and getting knocked out early, once people accumulate a lot of chips, the psychology of people change, and they feel they need to hold onto those chips. If you are serious about winning, plan to play awhile, and plan your day or night accordingly.
What should I be trying to do, win a big prize, or just win some prize?
Any prize is a good thing. There’s nothing like feeling like a winner. It’s hard to go very deep in any tournament, especially a free one. Don’t be afraid to take chances once you have secured a prize. Poker should be fun, and it’s not always about who takes first or who takes the grand prize. Once you’re already guaranteed something, that’s when you can risk everything.
Try your luck at a $1,000 Memorial Day Freeroll with NLOP on 5/31/21, open for registration now!
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