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PostPosted: Mon Sep 11, 2017 3:03 pm 
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Hey thanks for the feedback

I'll explain my reasoning and we can figure out if I should tweak my strategy at all. So on the flip I'm ahead, we can be comfortable with that. I'm OOP so I absolutely need to develop and protect my checking my range. You know this already, otherwise I get run over every time I check.

Now when you protect your check range you can't just check raise or check fold, you need a check call range too or you get led into the turn when you check call with nothing. So I want to fully balance my check range with a reasonable mix of check raise, check call and check fold

Now top pair with garbage kicker and straight draw on a coordinated board struck me as a check call but you could be right that it might be check raise. If I had top pair and flush draw, I would check raise or bet for SURE. So I think the sequence of 876 scares me that I might be check raising into a straight

Ok so that's the flop. Now you saw I should bet the turn where is a fair observation but don't forget she bet the flop so I'm planning on check calling here again but it goes check check what's ch is fine since I don't have a monster or anything

It's the huge bet on the river where ch screwed me up and I'm glad you agree that my fold is okay but I'm still not convinced

Interesting hand that shows how brutal it is to be OOP

I'm not rejecting my your advice btw, I just want to have a discussion so you understand what my passive looking play is doing



1. If you are trying to protect your checking range, then it's a check-raise spot always. You aren't strong enough to trap with such a mediocre hand. Any random big card hoses you. If you are checking to balance, then you should be check-raising. Anything less means that you are converting a made hand into a drawing hand, which is bad. Your problem is that you are balancing with a hand that is not polarized at all. I.E. you have no idea where you are in the hand when like 60% of the deck comes out on the turn. You can check/raise flop and fold to pretty much any raise back to you safely without a ton of history with this player.

2. Good news, you got about the only card that reasonably changes nothing for the hand! Your hand, while still only medium strength, is likely ahead of most hands that call a preflop raise and then donk the flop with position. Of course, there are a bunch of weird hands, like 99 or TT that you could be behind and this problem is exacerbated by the fact your flop play does nothing to establish any range whatsoever, but we can assume that if we were ahead flop, we're still ahead turn. So why check now? What is gained? Check/call is always worse than simply leading yourself if your goal is getting value. It protects against bad rivers (again, there are ALOT of them) and it lets you extract value from hands that were simply betting with position on the flop. Checking here is pretty awful unless you have your opponent pegs as a nit, in which case I guess check/fold is fine (again, this is a problem created by the passive flop play).

3. Calling the river would be a very Vert play (I'm a laggy player with a hero-call complex) and it's going to be wrong more times than right. In a rebuy tourney, players are more likely to make these types of calls, which a reg should know and would be likely to try to exploit. Further, overbet-shipping a bluff into a very straight-heavy board is all kinds of terrible, so I am going to discount that option heavily. Anything going for value is ahead of you, so just fold.

4. All the info you have given me leads me to believe this is not a massive nit (reg, semi-pro, in a REBUY tourney, no less). Therefore, playing so passively with a mid-strength hand is a way to bleed money.

I feel pretty confident in my line of thinking here and yes, you should re-evaluate your line on the flop and ask yourself what you are balancing there for. (that's ignoring that balancing is almost never worth it vs. people you don't play with alot, because you'll find yourself in a leveling game against someone who is playing a more logical, rote style and you will do nothing but level yourself)



tl/dr: change your flop play and all these crappy spots become much more straight-forward.

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 11, 2017 3:41 pm 
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1. You're right. My check call range should only be monsters are certain draws (strong flush draws mostly). I should have check raised to know where I am. I'm fine folding to a 3 bet there... unless I'm getting 2:1 on my call maybe cuz the straight draw is to the nuts

2. Yeah leading out after a check call makes sense but I'm not going to get into these situations anymore to your point. The check raise solves everything and it's a good check raise. Good point!'

I'm glad you like the fold at least

Ok this means I will be check raising more aggressively now which will fix my leak that I've experienced since July when I changed my OOP play to this.

That's interesting that you think balancing ranges is not important, I used to think that but my buddy has decided that game theory gets us eventually to that point where we're hard to beat. I play in the same two places always and they have noticed and commented on my cute plays for the last several years. I think my checks will get the respect I want eventually but I see what you're says by. I hope I'm not wasting my time


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 11, 2017 4:01 pm 
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1. You're right. My check call range should only be monsters are certain draws (strong flush draws mostly). I should have check raised to know where I am. I'm fine folding to a 3 bet there... unless I'm getting 2:1 on my call maybe cuz the straight draw is to the nuts

2. Yeah leading out after a check call makes sense but I'm not going to get into these situations anymore to your point. The check raise solves everything and it's a good check raise. Good point!'

I'm glad you like the fold at least

Ok this means I will be check raising more aggressively now which will fix my leak that I've experienced since July when I changed my OOP play to this.

That's interesting that you think balancing ranges is not important, I used to think that but my buddy has decided that game theory gets us eventually to that point where we're hard to beat. I play in the same two places always and they have noticed and commented on my cute plays for the last several years. I think my checks will get the respect I want eventually but I see what you're says by. I hope I'm not wasting my time


Here's my general thinking on balancing: it's a Level 4 play.

Level 1 would be "I have a strong hand, so I'll bet it."

Level 2 would be "I have a strong hand, so he'll expect I will bet it, so I will check it."

Level 3 would be "He has seen me check enough strong hands that I can disguise the strength of my hand by simply betting it."

Level 4 would be "He has seen all my plays, so now I should balance my range with mid-strength hands so can never really play optimally against it. My hand appears to be polarized, which means this player will [bet/fold, depending on player] vs. 100% of my range."



But if you are starting at Level 4, you're just assuming your opponent has done such gymnastics in their head, when they are almost always on Level 1 or 2. You're leveling yourself. Again, there are times that balancing is fine, but we're usually talking the point where you have taken at least 20-30 hands to showdown where this player was noting the action and can actually recall it. It's worthless against bad players who don't understand what they are seeing and it is worthless against good players who lack sufficient history and/or recollection.

Balancing makes way more sense online, where there are thousands of hands of data and tracking information to tell you everything you didn't remember about that guy in Seat 4.

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 11, 2017 7:02 pm 
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Man, great points. Maybe I should ditch this whole strategy. Ive balanced my pre-flop 3 bet range too and calling range pre flop when maybe I don't need to be


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 2:02 pm 
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Here's a fun quick little spot:

5/10/20 straddle game, I am starting the hand with $790. I have AKo in middle position, open to $80. LAG players call from button and BB, both cover me. QJ3 flop. BB checks. What is correct line here? I went B/C for $175.

Good, bad, indifferent?

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 3:17 pm 
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PREFLOP:
Your open seems insane big, you're screaming snowmen or something. I would have opened at 50, encourage someone to 3 bet to isolate, then you 4 bet and win.

FLOP:
This flop favours the button's range more than yours or the BB. BB probably missed. Button has advantage here so that favours the check.
However, you are the pre-flop raiser so betting is certainly reasonable. But you shouldn't bet on flop textures that favour the other person's range which this is. I think betting is acceptable and your bet size is excellent at around 75% of pot. I'd bet anywhere from 50-75% here.
Now, what I think the BEST play here is would be to attempt a check-raise. And you're fine if everyone checks. You want to raise when you value-raise (not here) or bluff-raise (you have a gut shot with two overs, I think this is an excellent opportunity for a Sklansky semi-bluff). I think I would check-raise here as my first option, but I would be very tempted to bet. Either is fine.

what's B/C?


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 4:23 pm 
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PREFLOP:
Your open seems insane big, you're screaming snowmen or something. I would have opened at 50, encourage someone to 3 bet to isolate, then you 4 bet and win.

FLOP:
This flop favours the button's range more than yours or the BB. BB probably missed. Button has advantage here so that favours the check.
However, you are the pre-flop raiser so betting is certainly reasonable. But you shouldn't bet on flop textures that favour the other person's range which this is. I think betting is acceptable and your bet size is excellent at around 75% of pot. I'd bet anywhere from 50-75% here.
Now, what I think the BEST play here is would be to attempt a check-raise. And you're fine if everyone checks. You want to raise when you value-raise (not here) or bluff-raise (you have a gut shot with two overs, I think this is an excellent opportunity for a Sklansky semi-bluff). I think I would check-raise here as my first option, but I would be very tempted to bet. Either is fine.

what's B/C?


4x isn't really insane big, imo. 2.5x isn't getting anyone to fold or isolate, I don't think. That would result in me playing some goofy 5-way bloated flop where even hitting isn't great. I think an honest argument could be made for betting more, but that starts to become transparent that I am looking to get it in on most flops.

I know the flop isn't great for me and their ranges are super wide, but what line is better? Check/folding 3-way here seems awful. Check/calling is worse.

Checking and then shoving over any bet is maybe okay, but then I take away any fold equity I have and leaves me with bad turns alot, I think.

B/c means bet/call, as in "bet and then call any raise (which with sizing is likely to be a shove). I bet $175, button shoved, I called. He had Q8 or some random ish, I bricked and lost. But I definitely could never bet/fold this flop with the stack sizes such as they are.


So the two lines I see as acceptable here are B/C and C/shove. I think B/C is better because it prevents the free card, which I don't think will help my hand often enough to be worth it.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 5:22 pm 
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Any broadway card should help you on the turn. 5 way with 2,5 raise preflop is ok cuz you have gutshot to the nuts which is decent

I like check raise or bet call the best I think. Q 8 is exactly what button should have there too. Interesting hand


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 5:02 pm 
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All of a sudden this forum is starting to feel like 2+2 :)

I play a bit, mostly tournaments, and usually PokerStars. And whenever I get to Vegas which is about once / 2 years or so. I don't really find cash games very fun. Too grindy and math only. If you're making the right decision most of the time, doesn't matter what happens in the short term, you're a winning player. But I don't play enough to really let the variance run it's course, and I'm not patient enough to grind cash games for the most part.

So I just occasionally donk off some money into tourneys. I really enjoy tournament tactics and the escalating pressure. Forces way more action and marginal play. Feels less grindy than cash, and for some reason, I'm able to do more with tourney chips. Tourney buy in I view as a sunk cost, and from there it's only upside. Variance is obviously way worse. IMO takes a different skill set to do well in tournaments.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 25, 2021 3:27 am 
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In fact, I completely agree with you. I mean, is there really anyone here who is gambling ? It's just that my friend lost a lot in gambling. So it's better not to do this.


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