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Cigars, Beer & Poker Ground >> I'm pretty sure I played this correctly...


4/27/10 12:25 PM
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andre
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I'm on the button with pocket jacks on a $2/$5 table. I have about $300 in front of me. 3 players limp on a table before it gets to me.

I raise to $35 (on this table $25 is the standard raise and raising $15 is almost considered limping). The SB and BB call, and so do the 3 who limped before me! I knew immediately that I had made too small a raise (which contradicts the title of this thread).

The flop comes Q-8-4 rags. Everyone checks except the player to my right who bets $40 into the $200+ pot. Because he limped from relatively late position preflop and seemed to only call because of pot odds, I put him on a weak queen and saw his bet as an assumption that I missed and that I would fold my A-K or A-J rather than chase. I figured that if I was correct that he had a weak king, I could get him to fold with a big raise because I have a fairly tight but aggressive image and he knows I wouldnt make this play with two overs. I raise to $140.

Everyone else, to my relief, folds, and the player to my right shoves. It's only another $100 to me into a $400 pot, so I make a crying call assuming he has king-queen or maybe even queen-jack...whatever, I was sure he had a queen and was hoping to hit a lucky jack or a miracle runner runner straight.

The turn was a king and the river was a king. The guy says, "I was screwed" as soon as he sees a higher pair, and mucks his cards, which means he either tried the worst bluff in the history of bluffing (since his raises and shove were not even close to enough to get me off a real hand), or he had 8-4 and nailed two pair on the flop.

Anyway, I think it's pretty clear that I played it correctly except for the preflop raise being too small, but I'm wondering if anyone has any other thoughts on it.

Thanks.
4/27/10 10:30 PM
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alley
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I would have folded to the flop bet.

The flop had an overcard to your pair on the board, so your hand is now just a medium strength hand. If you were heads up, then sure, you'd keep going. But you are up against 5 opponents! I'd want a lot better than middle pair before getting so much of my stack involved.
4/28/10 1:14 AM
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andre
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Alley, thanks for the input. The whole reason I posted this was because of the key moment when I reraised him $140. Keep in mind that he was a limper before my preflop raise and based on his position and what I know of his game that ruled out aq and kq. A small pocket pair made sense, but the fact that he bet it before I could even cbet kinda told me I wasn't up against a set. Turns out he had two pair, but I'm certain he would have folded any q other than aq or kq to my reraise. Once he shoved I knew I was way behind, but I wasn't going anywhere with the odds I was vetting for the remainder of my stack.
4/29/10 12:21 AM
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PR
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andre -  Because he limped from relatively late position preflop and seemed to only call because of pot odds, I put him on a weak queen and saw his bet as an assumption that I missed and that I would fold my A-K or A-J rather than chase. I figured that if I was correct that he had a weak king, I could get him to fold with a big raise because I have a fairly tight but aggressive image and he knows I wouldnt make this play with two overs. I raise to $140.


No offense andre, but your thinking is terrible. Gotta think about ranges more so than putting people on specific hands.

The second way your thinking is terrible is putting yourself into a super bad spot where you are getting all your money in and letting him play perfectly against you. So he either folds his worse hand, or has you crushed to 2 outs. This is the exact opposite of the typical ways youd maximise your value.

You put yourself into the position of making a huge mistake, which is right where you are supposed to put your opponents.

Preflop I love your thinking. That's exactly the right way to think about the situation. In this case, yes you could have made a larger raise, but thats just experience. Next time in a similar spot you'll know you can raise even larger preflop, and make them make a worse mistake preflop by calling you.
4/29/10 3:38 AM
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PR
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I also think you are being results-oriented.
4/29/10 11:54 AM
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andre
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PR,

Thanks. I appreciate the feedback. I know that I lost the hand despite the fact that I won it because of runner-runner kings, but the only thing in the range of his limping preflop and then calling because everyone else did is a weak queen or a small pair. I see him raising preflop with KQ from relatively late position, possibly limping with QJ, definitely not hoping to limp-reraise with a big hand when there's only me and the blinds left to act preflop. Are you saying that it was a mistake because he could have possibly hit a set? I just dont see how he has a big queen here that he cant lay down to my reraise after I was the preflop raiser and they know me as a tight aggressive player.

He called with 8-4 and hit two pair. I dont think I could have put him on that no matter how open his range. I think he checks a set hoping I'll bet, but instead he bet, which led me to believe he had a queen. I sincerely believe that if he had a Q he would fold anything short of AQ or KQ to my reraise.

Can you please elaborate on the range you would put him on? I really appreciate it.

(by the way, in my original post I said "I figured that if I was correct that he had a weak king"...obviously I meant weak queen.)

Lastly, PR, definitely no offense taken. I can see the possibility that my thinking was horrible, but there is a $200 pot that my opponent has bet $40 into. Do I automatically give him credit for a Q or a better hand? If I don't, do I just call only to be in a worse predicament when another over comes? or the same predicament when another under comes? What do I do when he raises on the next street?

Given that I made the mistake preflop of not betting enough (in order to limit the players to one and to narrow the range), do I let it go as soon as anyone takes a stab at it, and if I dont, shouldnt I put him to the test with a large reraise? When he shoved I knew I assumed I was behind but I thought I was getting the right odds to call.
4/29/10 12:29 PM
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andre
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PR - I also think you are being results-oriented.


Just to clarify. I thought I played correctly despite sucking out, not because I won. I thought that my thinking with the reraise was correct, although I'm open to the possibility that it wasnt.
4/29/10 12:33 PM
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andre
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o.k., just ran the numbers. Even if my reraise was justified to try to get him off of a weak Q (perhaps I should have reraise for more or shoved if that was my intention), I cant justify calling his all in. If he hit the queen with anything I was a huge underdog and I should have let it go.

But is the reraise at least arguable, or do you think I should have let it go once he bet?
4/29/10 3:17 PM
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billid
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You didn't give any description of the player you were up against, but if you did have any idea how he was playing (eg. limping every hand) then raising over a huge fish with what you figured was top pair/kicker don't matter, would be a bad move.

It's hard to put this guy on a range, I see his donk bet as a very fishy play and extremely weak (this coming from online only experience). These small bets relative to the pot OOP by weak players tend to be draw hands, Ace high, low pocket pair. Here I would not be putting him on a Q based on his play. Preflop the shittier players can have just about anything but the "min bet" oop narraws it down a bit, we can rule out 100% bluff without a draw. If he had a Q, I think he would check it to you expecting a Cbet, why would he want to push an aggro player off his hand with top pair?

Here I would call cause his only draw is a gut shot and he could have paired the 8 or 4. With a raise you are really risking pushing him off his hand and getting more value (even if it is small) out of later streets. I think he is very weak so what do I get out of bluffing the best hand? Now you say Q, the possibility of a Q works with my call also because as long as the turn card is not an A or K, you'll see a way bigger bet which you can then narrow down his range and re-evaluate your hand.

Now when you raise you get yourself into a whole lot of trouble. First, like I described, you push him off very weak hands that he might continue to barrel down. And if he hit top pair on the flop, no fish in their right mind is folding here. I guess he could also be playing tricky using your aggressive nature against you with a set but highly unlikely that he's thinking on this level.

If I were in this situation I would call or min raise, calling being the likely option. Stack sizes or just too fucked up at this point to make a raise work out for you. Although you narrowed him down to a Q which was your first wrong move.

The only other thing I can say PR covered off. I just wanted to analyze the hand so that you can get a feel for putting this guy on a range and the thought process you might want to consider going through during a hand. As PR said, put him on a range rather than narrowing it down to one hand. I don't think somebody who played at the same table as this guy for 10 years every day could possibly narrow his range down to one hand in this spot.
4/29/10 3:55 PM
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billid
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Edited: 04/29/10 4:06 PM
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6/1/10 8:37 PM
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joe canada
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Yay! An old thread to give my 2c on.

In addition to the critique given by the others on this thread, I will add that I think you are committing the common mistake of defining his idiocy to suit what you want, not what is.

You have him dumb enough to min open bet a weak Q into a preflop raiser and 4 other players on a raggity board.
But you have him at the same time smart enough to fold that top pair to your reraise.
But he is dumb enough to call out of position with a Qx rag hand.
But he is too smart to bet a set into the preflop raiser
But also too dumb to min bet a set into the preflop raiser in order to draw the stack-committing raise.

You are overcomplicating it, and counting on him being just the perfect kind of idiot to make the play you want to make anyways.

Let me simplify it:

His bet means he either has something or he's bluffing with position.
Your raise says "I don't care, I have something and I am prepared to commit myself to this pot"
What does his shove mean?

The raise itself is not bad, in theory. But in practice? Into five limp-callers, any one of which could be ready with a check-raise? Few of whom would lay down top pair (generally limp callers are prepared to go deep with top pair) With two outs if you're wrong? Fold here. Don't risk your stack hoping that either: he's bluffing or he's smart enough to lay down.

He's not bluffing.
He's not smart enough to lay down.

PS: "A small pocket pair made sense, but the fact that he bet it before I could even cbet kinda told me I wasn't up against a set" Betting a set into the preflop raiser is poker 101. Doyle talks about this very move in a little book you might have heard of...

PPS: I'm back!


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