Zeebo Theorem

The Zeebo theorem is very simple, yet the most profitable out of all poker theorems. Zeebo is a nickname of Greg Lavery, a relatively unknown professional poker player.

Zeebo theorem

“No player is capable of folding a full house on any betting round, regardless of the size of the bet.”

The Zeebo theorem is extremely reliable. You should definitely implement it into your game, if you have not done this already. It can turn a breaking even player into a big winner by extracting the maximum value of the best hand, on one hand, and avoiding bad bluffs, on the other.

Taking advantage of Zeebo theorem

The Zeebo theorem assumes that a full house is a very strong and rare hand, thus players will very rarely, if ever, fold a full house. Would you comfortably fold a full house? It would certainly be a tough decision.

Even if a player holds a weak full house, more often than not, they will still convince themselves to call knowing that there is a possibility that they are being bluffed.

There are at least three kinds of situations, where you can profitably apply the Zeebo theorem:

 If you think your opponent has a full house and you hold a better hand, put as much money into the pot as you can.
 Avoid bluffing a player you put on a full house. Even on a board like AAK55, when you think your opponent has a 5, attempting to bluff him is like setting money on fire.
 When you play against a very good player, they will certainly be aware of the Zeebo theorem. If you hold a weak full house, like this from the previous point, and they make a large bet, they will almost surely hold a better hand, trying to extract the most value. Fold and save your money.

Zeebo theorem example

The hand presented below is a real hand played on Lucky Ace Poker. It is an extreme example of taking advantage of the Zeebo theorem in practice:

$2/$4 Blinds No Limit Texas Holdem game

UTG - $400

MP - $394

CO - $556.30

BTN - $488

SB - $952.07

Hero - $1,003.20

Hero hole cards - KT

UTG folds, MP folds, CO folds, BTN folds, SB raises to $14, Hero calls $12

Flop - T49

SB checks, Hero bets $20, SB calls $20

Turn - T

SB bets $56, Hero calls $56

River - 9

SB checks, Hero bets $911.20, SB calls $860.07

SB shows A9

Hero shows KT

Hero wins $1,900.14

In this hand, SB was a regular NL400 player with a tendency to seeing too many showdowns. I was reluctant to raise his bet on the turn, as our stacks were deep and he could have had AT, giving him trips with a better kicker at that moment.

However, on the river I was sure that my opponent had either the same full house as mine or a worse one. Knowing the somewhat fishy postflop play of my opponent, I made a large 200BB overbet, hoping that he was not going to fold any full house. As it turned out, I was right and won a nice pot for my efforts.

More articles on poker theorems:

 Poker theorems overview
 Fundamental theorem of poker
 Baluga theorem
 Clarkmeister theorem

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