Giving a free card means checking a hand you could have bet when there are more cards to come. Of course, when you check with the intention of raising, you are giving a free card only when your opponent is so uncooperative as not to bet into you.
When you know or are pretty sure you have the best hand, you have to decide whether or not to give your opponent a free card. We saw in the last chapter that it is almost never correct to give a free card when the pot is large. It turns out that it is rarely correct to give a free card with medium-sized pots, even when you know your opponent will fold if you bet.
You simply have to be satisfied with what there is in the pot already. One reason you should bet is that generally you want your opponent to fold. Suppose, going into the last card in seven-card stud, you think a player has a gut-shot draw to a straight, and you have three-of-a-kind. Your opponent is at least a 10-to-l underdog to make the straight, and even if he hits, you may make a full house. So you’re a big favorite to win the hand.