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Old 04-03-2017, 03:06 PM   #61
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with KJ from the hijack i raise three limpers to $14. the button and two of the limpers call and we see a jack high flop with one heart. i bet $40 here and the button shoves all in for $72. the two limpers fold and i call the $32. the button has AA and the board bricks out.

if i just call with aces in a situation like that i'm a loser every time. "they" just call, however, and everything right down to the jack high flop goes their way.
This is actually a nice subject to think about.

First of all, as a general matter, what's the purpose of calling here with the aces versus raising?

Second, under what conditions could calling be plausible as opposed to raising? What are you risking by not re-raising aces? What are you gaining?

Third, let's say you do just call. What's your plan on different flops? Are there situations where the correct play is different, such as check-call, donk-shove, or even check-fold?

Fourth, does the fact that the villain is a short stack change the correct strategy, from his standpoint?

(I won't answer these questions straight up yet, but I will tip my hand-- I think the villain played the hand badly, but it was less bad because he was short-stacked and would have been worse if he had more chips.)
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Old 04-03-2017, 05:14 PM   #62
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...I think the villain played the hand badly, but it was less bad because he was short-stacked and would have been worse if he had more chips.)
The play was also "less bad" because Proximity is obviously a tight player. The button might have surmised that, if he raised, his aces would have only garnered a $23 profit in the hand. So...he decided to make the much riskier play with his short stack, in order to fish for a larger return. Most players get trickier with a short stack.
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Old 04-03-2017, 05:49 PM   #63
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This is actually a nice subject to think about.

...under what conditions could calling be plausible as opposed to raising? What are you risking by not re-raising aces? What are you gaining?
Well...let's say that you are UTG...and you open-raise for $10. It's folded to me on the button, and I am holding aces. If our stacks are fairly deep, and since I have position in the hand...I might call with my aces in order to disguise the strength of my hand. Even if one of the blinds also calls...my position in the hand allows me to exert the sort of "control" in the hand that I wouldn't otherwise have.

If I reraise you preflop...then, even if you call...you'll check to me on the flop. And I'd rather have YOU lead the betting in this spot.
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Old 04-03-2017, 06:23 PM   #64
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Well...let's say that you are UTG...and you open-raise for $10. It's folded to me on the button, and I am holding aces. If our stacks are fairly deep, and since I have position in the hand...I might call with my aces in order to disguise the strength of my hand. Even if one of the blinds also calls...my position in the hand allows me to exert the sort of "control" in the hand that I wouldn't otherwise have.

If I reraise you preflop...then, even if you call...you'll check to me on the flop. And I'd rather have YOU lead the betting in this spot.
Roy Cooke does that sort of thing in limit. It's obviously a better play in no limit than in limit, but it also carries a significant drawback, which is that in many of these scenarios a call is the same as a 3-bet (i.e., your calling range against a tight UTG raiser heads up should be pretty darned narrow). (The reason it's such a bad play in limit is because the situation is so obviously 3-bet or fold that any good player's call is going to look highly suspicious to anyone paying attention.)

Now, if we stipulate that the UTG raiser is an inattentive tagfish who is going to c-bet close to 100 percent of the time, the play starts to look a lot better.

In general, against a player who is paying attention, you don't to merge a 3-betting range into a null set calling range.

One other observation. I think a lot of players don't realize exactly how hard it is for their opponents to fold big hands pre-flop. For instance, I've been in no limit games where the action goes something like this:

5/5 blinds, $500 stacks. Tight player raises UTG to $20. Reasonably tight player 3-bets to $55. Button calls with AA.

The problem with this play is that if either of the opponents has a QQ+ (which is probably a pretty high probability given this action), you are leaving a ton of pre-flop money on the table here because players are extremely bad at folding QQ and KK. Indeed, even AKs or AQs will often make a call. In contrast, post-flop the board may run out in a way that looks unfavorable to their hand and allows them to lay it down.

And when you add to that the fact that you are giving them a cheap shot at setmining with reasonably decent stack-to-pot ratios, I tend to think this is generally overdone.
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Old 04-03-2017, 06:39 PM   #65
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Roy Cooke does that sort of thing in limit. It's obviously a better play in no limit than in limit, but it also carries a significant drawback, which is that in many of these scenarios a call is the same as a 3-bet (i.e., your calling range against a tight UTG raiser heads up should be pretty darned narrow). (The reason it's such a bad play in limit is because the situation is so obviously 3-bet or fold that any good player's call is going to look highly suspicious to anyone paying attention.)

Now, if we stipulate that the UTG raiser is an inattentive tagfish who is going to c-bet close to 100 percent of the time, the play starts to look a lot better.

In general, against a player who is paying attention, you don't to merge a 3-betting range into a null set calling range.

One other observation. I think a lot of players don't realize exactly how hard it is for their opponents to fold big hands pre-flop. For instance, I've been in no limit games where the action goes something like this:

5/5 blinds, $500 stacks. Tight player raises UTG to $20. Reasonably tight player 3-bets to $55. Button calls with AA.

The problem with this play is that if either of the opponents has a QQ+ (which is probably a pretty high probability given this action), you are leaving a ton of pre-flop money on the table here because players are extremely bad at folding QQ and KK. Indeed, even AKs or AQs will often make a call. In contrast, post-flop the board may run out in a way that looks unfavorable to their hand and allows them to lay it down.

And when you add to that the fact that you are giving them a cheap shot at setmining with reasonably decent stack-to-pot ratios, I tend to think this is generally overdone.
I have been playing NL exclusively for the last 5 years or so...and I find that the game is very "situational". The texture of the particular GAME dictates how these particular decisions are made...and rules of a "general" nature don't bring forth the best results. In NL..."general" rules do not "generally" apply.
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Old 04-03-2017, 09:41 PM   #66
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I have been playing NL exclusively for the last 5 years or so...and I find that the game is very "situational". The texture of the particular GAME dictates how these particular decisions are made...and rules of a "general" nature don't bring forth the best results. In NL..."general" rules do not "generally" apply.
I haven't played in your no limit games. I did play a significant sample of hours in 5/5 no limit here in Southern California, and I didn't find there were a ton of special situational decisions. Most players either had narrowly definable ranges (especially in raised pots) or were maniacs, and it was relatively simple to do the math and get your money in good against either type of players. The only time that you had to make significant strategic adjustments were in limped pots, where you ran into a lot of 75 to 90 percent ranges.

And this isn't the only example of "generally wrong" I saw. Defending the blinds with any two cards was common and I would label "generally wrong". Also playing any two cards in late position in raised multi-way pots, playing small pocket pairs and suited connectors without a good stack to pot ratio, and way too much slowplay of sets or better that left tons of money on the table.

Now, all of those things can be defended in particular game situations, I realize that. But what I'm telling you is that you have the tendency to make it sound like NL is this black box where every game is completely different and the expert psychologist has a huge advantage. That was simply not my experience, at all. I was able to do most of the calculations in my head (indeed, they were often simpler than in limit games) and the most common situations repeated themselves over and over. (Indeed, the reason I switched back to limit was because I found NL boring, even though it is profitable.) And certainly a good mathemetician has a huge advantage over a good psychologist in a California NL game.

If you play in NL games where this is not the case, you might want to move out to California.
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Old 04-04-2017, 12:34 AM   #67
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I haven't played in your no limit games. I did play a significant sample of hours in 5/5 no limit here in Southern California, and I didn't find there were a ton of special situational decisions. Most players either had narrowly definable ranges (especially in raised pots) or were maniacs, and it was relatively simple to do the math and get your money in good against either type of players. The only time that you had to make significant strategic adjustments were in limped pots, where you ran into a lot of 75 to 90 percent ranges.

And this isn't the only example of "generally wrong" I saw. Defending the blinds with any two cards was common and I would label "generally wrong". Also playing any two cards in late position in raised multi-way pots, playing small pocket pairs and suited connectors without a good stack to pot ratio, and way too much slowplay of sets or better that left tons of money on the table.

Now, all of those things can be defended in particular game situations, I realize that. But what I'm telling you is that you have the tendency to make it sound like NL is this black box where every game is completely different and the expert psychologist has a huge advantage. That was simply not my experience, at all. I was able to do most of the calculations in my head (indeed, they were often simpler than in limit games) and the most common situations repeated themselves over and over. (Indeed, the reason I switched back to limit was because I found NL boring, even though it is profitable.) And certainly a good mathemetician has a huge advantage over a good psychologist in a California NL game.

If you play in NL games where this is not the case, you might want to move out to California.
And I am telling you that you have the tendency to make it sound as if I am allergic to poker math...even though I have never implied that in any of our poker discussions here. The assertion that I place the good psychologist in a "huge advantage" over the good mathematician exists only in your imagination.
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Old 04-04-2017, 07:47 PM   #68
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And I am telling you that you have the tendency to make it sound as if I am allergic to poker math...even though I have never implied that in any of our poker discussions here. The assertion that I place the good psychologist in a "huge advantage" over the good mathematician exists only in your imagination.
You say a lot of stuff about how situational no limit is.

At least out here, it's situational only on the margins. Most of the time, you get an aggressive play, the player doing it has a very narrow range, and it's pretty easy to count up the combinations and take the appropriate action. Not a lot different than limit.

If the games are tougher where you are, my condolences.
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Old 04-04-2017, 09:33 PM   #69
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If the games are tougher where you are, my condolences.


hope that wasn't t'los against those 6s.

i will be in ac this week if anyone's playing.
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Old 04-05-2017, 05:53 AM   #70
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an actual good week???.....

ok poker fans, when we last left off everything was going wrong.... AGAIN... and truth be told i couldn't remember back to the last time something went right.

indeed i was just sitting around depressed and while all of you smart people were over in general off-topic debating serious issues i was trying to cheer myself up by watching some shania videos.

in one video however, we learn that not even guys with money, brains, cars or even looks impress shania too much and so i highly doubt my weekly three digit poker losses would do much to excite her?

i watch her high energy "party for two" but note that me and our high rolling pal the lion know a guy who looks like the dude in the video and he's dating a 265 pounder.... not partying privately with shania.


eventually i turn off the computer and decide to return to my best game: 3/6 limit hold em at horseshoe baltimore.

it'll be depressing to lose at the shoe, and i do lose with every big pair in the deck.... except our old buddy KK which drags a nice pot and gives me a little momentum. it's just the spark i need as i go on to win $72 and grab $35 of bonus money. i return the next day to play some more 3/6 but the game struggles to get going. eventually it picks up though and i win another $157 in a long session.

back home at penn national there's a special high hand day and i head out early only to find that 3/6 action has already commenced. i've arrived in time to get a seat though but it's bittersweet as i quickly fall behind $50.

but the tide quickly changes and the profits start rolling in. i don't win any high hands but i go 4-0 with KK and my AKs and AQs are hitting flops and holding. i drop a couple hands with JJ but overall i rarely lose a pot i'm involved in.

a much needed good week but still a long road to get back to even let alone ahead for the season.

thank you for reading.

game +72 (hsb)
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Old 04-06-2017, 08:33 PM   #71
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i will be in ac this week if anyone's playing.
live report here from the borgata.

kicked off the excitement here at borgata with a 7-8 hour session of 3/6 limit hold em. i was looking to build on my recent winning streak but instead went back to being the worst seat at the table. i lose three times with KK and at least ten times with top pair and drop $82 in the game.

there was a bit of good news though as a flopped set of queens rivers a fourth and holds on for a $250 high hand!!

look for me to be back here tomorrow before moving over to harrah's where we'll be joined saturday by our good friend paris hilton!!

game -82 (3/6)
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Old 04-07-2017, 06:15 PM   #72
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live report here from the borgata.

kicked off the excitement here at borgata with a 7-8 hour session of 3/6 limit hold em. i was looking to build on my recent winning streak but instead went back to being the worst seat at the table. i lose three times with KK and at least ten times with top pair and drop $82 in the game.

there was a bit of good news though as a flopped set of queens rivers a fourth and holds on for a $250 high hand!!

look for me to be back here tomorrow before moving over to harrah's where we'll be joined saturday by our good friend paris hilton!!

game -82 (3/6)
year -1014 (26-25)
bonus 225 (470)
The worst seat at the table would actually be directly to the left of a skilled player.....
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Old 04-19-2017, 11:39 PM   #73
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black card borgata blues......

ok poker fans we're back with more hold em excitement from the borgata in windy and rainy atlantic city!!

following brief winning streak in maryland and pennsylvania we hoped to for our good fortunes to continue on the jersey shore.

they did.... kinda..... as i hit a $250 high hand at borgata but suffered a loss in the game which i quit to try a late supper at the borgata's buffet.

$12.50 of comp dollars for black card holders seemed like a steal and i chowed down on what was left of the chinese food. it was good but overall i still feel that borgata's bread and butter cafe gives me the best bang for my comp $$. and soon i won't have much choice anyhow as i'll probably be demoted to humble red card status in july.

after the buffet i went up to the room to rest for a while before returning to the card room to spend the night relaxing in some 2/4 hold em.

i'm to the left of two incredible donkeys.... what dilane would classify as the best seat (i think).

we encounter some really strange cats in our poker travels but the one guy actually surprises me. he seems somewhat "normal"..... well dressed, groomed, polite, could be your 35 year old yuppie neighbor..... doesn't really check a lot of "major donkey" profile boxes i guess.... but his play i'd label aggressive aunt hortense. playing 100% of hands and raising 75-80% of them!

he's raising these 94s, showing down bottom pair, losing and politely saying "nice hand" as his green chips are being distributed around this lowly 2/4 table.

i beat him with AA and he says "nice hand" but that's the only time i hear it as i lose hand after hand after hand after hand.

i lose with pretty much every low and medium pocket pair in the deck and about ten times with pocket 6s.

in the end i drop $120 in this recreational game and barely show a profit for the day despite hitting a high hand.

thank you for reading.

game -120 (2/4)
year -1134 (26-26)
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Old 04-21-2017, 08:18 PM   #74
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What percentage of hands did you play on the left of the consistent raiser?

Did you loosen your own tight standards or just play the hands you would normally play regardless of the maniac?

One of the problems with limit is that it's a lot more difficult to isolate against a player like this because EVERONE wants to be in against him on the flop. Being to the left of a maniac is more beneficial in NL/PL.

I will be making my annual pilgrimage to Las Vegas for WSOP 6/10-6/13 though I have no intention of playing in the tournament itself. I'll be in the Pavillion playing my favorite game (PLO) for as many hours as I can stand.

Want to again recommend getting out to the Rio at least once in your life during WSOP to play in the football field size temporary poker room that only exists May-July. I know the idea of playing against "fish" is a well worn meme but last year I sat at tables with drunks, people asking how to read PLO hands, and super aggro's who thought they had won low at a high only table they had been sitting at for 45 minutes.

It really is poker heaven.

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Old 04-21-2017, 11:42 PM   #75
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Prox-

What percentage of hands did you play on the left of the consistent raiser?

Did you loosen your own tight standards or just play the hands you would normally play regardless of the maniac?

One of the problems with limit is that it's a lot more difficult to isolate against a player like this because EVERONE wants to be in against him on the flop. Being to the left of a maniac is more beneficial in NL/PL.

I will be making my annual pilgrimage to Las Vegas for WSOP 6/10-6/13 though I have no intention of playing in the tournament itself. I'll be in the Pavillion playing my favorite game (PLO) for as many hours as I can stand.

Want to again recommend getting out to the Rio at least once in your life during WSOP to play in the football field size temporary poker room that only exists May-July. I know the idea of playing against "fish" is a well worn meme but last year I sat at tables with drunks, people asking how to read PLO hands, and super aggro's who thought they had won low at a high only table they had been sitting at for 45 minutes.

It really is poker heaven.
he was basically paying the rake but i still didn't stray too far off my normal course in this game.

i'm considering going out again in august since i really enjoyed last year's trip.

good luck when you go. june will be here before we know it. are you still playing that local plo game??
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