The Min Raise in Poker

A min-raise is the smallest possible raise that exists in the game, and it has become one of the most commonly used plays in modern poker. 

Interestingly, there was a time when the min-raise play was seen as a sign of weakness, or as a sign that the player was inexperienced. These days it is extremely prevalent and, when you are facing such a play, it can be one of the most frustrating spots in poker.

The reason a min-raise is enough to throw yourself off a cliff is because, despite being faced with a move that is screaming absolute strength, it is giving you the best odds you will ever get on a call. For this reasoning, the min-raise can be a very frustrating play to face, which in turn makes it a very powerful weapon to deploy.

There are different ways of looking at dissecting the min-raise and, invariably, it depends on what street you are playing; but, for the sake of brevity, we will simplify matters. You can make a min-raise when you have a very strong hand and want to induce a bluff-raise by your opponent. 

For this to happen, especially in an event, there must be some history between both of you, and your opponent must also be capable of making a move. 

Another spot where the min-raise is a great play is as a bluff, but, once again, you must be facing a ‘thinking’ player for them to have the foresight to even think like you are thinking. 

By min-raising, you are wasting the least amount of chips possible if called. Finally, you can use the min-raise to extract some extra value from players you know will fold if you make the bets any larger.