Originally posted by nimzo5
Coming from the philosophy that you can't truly avoid opening theory, if you wanted to steer things away from a Benoni what about playing 2.e4 cxd4 3. c3 and going for a Smith Morra type game? If Black declines taking on c3 and plays Nf6 then you continue with e5 and Nf3 type setups.
This might play into the style that the Benoni player likes though so idk.
Well it's a reasonable suggestion. I'm sure the Morra suits some players but they are more likely to start 1.e4 anyway. Despite experimenting with the BDG, Sicilian Wing Gambit and others on here, I am not really one for deliberately offering pawns on the never-never in the opening, especially OTB. What if you don't get it back once any initiative has expired?
There are a number of reasonable second moves for white instead of d5 for days when you don't fancy a main line Benoni, Old or Modern. 2.c3 with the London/Colle beckoning, 2.dxc5 off beat Benoni as played, or 2.Nf3 with lines that can transpose to variations of the English if c4 is played.
finnegan had it right in another thread recently "... that whatever clever or foolish openings are used, there is enough opportunity across the whole game for the better player to win and the lesser player (despite every advantage) to fail..."