The term 'stop and go' in poker refers to the line where a player bets the flop, checks the turn (stops), then fires the river (and go).
The term was used by old school poker players but is experiencing a resurgence in usage in modern times. (There is a whole generation of players that doesn’t know what a ‘stop and go’ is, so it might be necessary to explain further when using the term in a conversation).
In this guide we’ll learn the following -
Why is it Called a ‘Stop and Go’ in Poker?
First a bet is made on the flop. Then the aggression is discontinued (stopped) on the turn with a check. The aggression is then ‘go’ again on the river when the player makes a second bet (hence ‘stop and go’). Old school grinders and modern grinders are familiar with the term but there is a generation of players in the middle who may no havet heard it before since the term fell out of usage for a while.
Is the ‘Stop and Go’ a Useful Line in Poker?
Research shows that the average opponent folds quite frequently to stop and go lines making it a good opportunity for bluffing aggressively. The average player folds around 50% of the time to a stop and go and we only need them to fold 40% of the time vs a 2/3rds pot bet in order for a bluff to be profitable.
What are the Different Types of Stop and Go Lines in Poker?
A stop and go line can refer to any spot where a bet/check/bet line occurs postflop. The most common stop and go line occurs either IP or OOP in a single-raised heads up pot when hero is the preflop aggressor. However, they can also occur when hero is the cold-caller IP or OOP (known as ‘float-bet stop and go’ and ‘donk-bet stop and go’ respectively. Stop and go lines can also occur in 3bet pots, 4bet pots and limped pots.
Should I Give Credit to Villain’s Stop and Go Lines?
Research shows that the average player is bluffing slightly too much with stop and go lines. This means we should generally bluffcatch quite wide when facing a stop and go. This does not necessarily mean we should expect to win over 50% of the time, but we only need to win 25% of the time to break even against a half pot river bet. If we imagine our opponent is bluffing 35% of the time with a half pot bet we should call with our bluffcatcher even though we expect to lose 65% of the time after calling.
Stop and Go Summary
It’s called a stop and go any time there is a bet/check/bet line postflop regardless of the preflop action. Not only do stop and go lines present us with good bluffing opportunities but we should also be looking to bluffcatch quite wide vs our opponents’ stop and go lines since they are typically over-bluffed.