[NL20-NL50] NL25: QT bad line

    • Avatars91
      Avatars91
      Bronze
      Joined: 18.12.2009 Posts: 2,689
      Poker Stars $0.10/$0.25 No Limit Hold'em - 4 players - View hand 1995886
      DeucesCracked Poker Videos Hand History Converter

      CO: $31.62
      BTN: $10.43
      Hero (SB): $25.00
      BB: $10.00

      Pre Flop: ($0.35) Hero is SB with T :spade: Q :club:
      1 fold, BTN calls $0.25, Hero raises to $1, 1 fold, BTN calls $0.75

      Flop: ($2.25) 2 :spade: T :heart: K :diamond: (2 players)
      Hero bets $1.25, BTN calls $1.25

      Turn: ($4.75) 6 :spade: (2 players)
      Hero checks, BTN bets $1, Hero calls $1

      River: ($6.75) K :club: (2 players)
      Hero checks, BTN bets $2.25, Hero folds

      Again, an old hand etc. etc. :)

      2 problems with the way I played the hand:
      1) if bet flop, then turn has to be bet as well vs his floats
      2) as played, at least should have called the river since the bet is so small (not entirely sure about this)

      What I wanted to ask though is – would a check/call line on the flop not be preferable since we only have to fear A + J overcards because of our Q kicker (if we had JT, for example, then it would be better to bet)? Or is it risky since villain may very likely be passive given that he is openlimping preflop and thus we can't induce much and should start betting ourselves?
  • 24 replies
    • Kaitz20
      Kaitz20
      Bronze
      Joined: 02.02.2007 Posts: 27,343
      Hi,

      I would mostly prefer c-betting flop with my pairs- usually makes your hand easier to play and gets you paid against Kx if you hit your T or Q+ if you want can always bluff on A river.
      If you check then he has very easy plan to bet all 3 streets with Kx

      1) if bet flop, then turn has to be bet as well vs his floats
      - I disagree.
      As you said you are likely only afraid Ax on the river, so why you want to make fold hands that has very little equity against your made hand. Better let him do the betting and go to showdown (especially against that small bets) and if you´re against Kx then at least you know how he plays his tp hands (although at my experience you´re ahead there more than 50%)

      2) as played, at least should have called the river since the bet is so small (not entirely sure about this)
      - yes, easy call on the river. Kx makes it a lot less likely he has there trips

      best regards,
    • Avatars91
      Avatars91
      Bronze
      Joined: 18.12.2009 Posts: 2,689
      So is this summarization appropriate?

      We cBet this flop and gain the most value from weaker Tx hands + GS/SD/Ax floats, right?

      Then we check/call the turn (provided that his betsizing is not superstrong), assuming that he may very likely take the initiative back with his draws/floats.

      And on blank rivers we can most often just check/fold vs any normally sized bet without any additional info on the guy, since very often he may just give up on the river with his floats anyway?

      And if he checks behind on the turn though and the river is a blank we can still blockbet/make a 1/2 PS bet to get called by weaker pairs or Ax?

      Sounds like a great plan. I am just worried about us getting bluffed out of the pot every now and then OTR by unknowns. Similarly like when taking the check/call line on the flop.
    • veriz
      veriz
      Black
      Joined: 20.07.2008 Posts: 65,504
      Hello Avatars91,

      Gonna take over here. :P

      If we are CBetting the flop then it means we are planning to do it for value. There is no such option as Check the turn and then "oh what I do now". Will also be difficult to turn our hand into bluff-catcher this way vs rather unknown players. Therefore our plan is to 2nd barrel to do it also vs unknown for free showdown.

      If we want to turn our hand into bluff-catcher then rather do it on the flop instead and let him Bet. Whilst he most likely is capable of checking behind on the turn then.

      So clear line as you should be picking here is Check/Call 2 streets.

      Best Regards.
    • Avatars91
      Avatars91
      Bronze
      Joined: 18.12.2009 Posts: 2,689
      So clear line as you should be picking here is Check/Call 2 streets.


      You mean that if we check the flop we should usually be prepared to check/call 2 streets vs normally sized bets on somewhat blank cards?
    • veriz
      veriz
      Black
      Joined: 20.07.2008 Posts: 65,504
      Originally posted by Avatars91
      So clear line as you should be picking here is Check/Call 2 streets.


      You mean that if we check the flop we should usually be prepared to check/call 2 streets vs normally sized bets on somewhat blank cards?
      Depends on the opponent but most likely we could consider doing that if we assume he is bluffing enough and maybe even betting weaker holdings. Though weaker passive players would just Check behind the turn.

      I was talking about Check/Call turn hand into bluff-catcher on turn = call also river.
    • Avatars91
      Avatars91
      Bronze
      Joined: 18.12.2009 Posts: 2,689
      I was talking about Check/Call turn hand into bluff-catcher on turn = call also river.


      From what I understand you are not too big a fan of this line though. So my question – what criteria must be met in order for this line to ever be a good choice?
      I mean, if you say that there is such a possibility to cbet the flop, and check call turn + many rivers, such a line must have a good use in certain contexts :)

      Though this seems like a very broad question to ask. If there is just too much to talk about regarding this issue, then we can leave it for a private coaching or smthn.
    • veriz
      veriz
      Black
      Joined: 20.07.2008 Posts: 65,504
      Originally posted by Avatars91
      I was talking about Check/Call turn hand into bluff-catcher on turn = call also river.


      From what I understand you are not too big a fan of this line though. So my question – what criteria must be met in order for this line to ever be a good choice?
      I mean, if you say that there is such a possibility to cbet the flop, and check call turn + many rivers, such a line must have a good use in certain contexts :)

      Though this seems like a very broad question to ask. If there is just too much to talk about regarding this issue, then we can leave it for a private coaching or smthn.
      It's more about how we see the opponent, how the opponent sees us and if he is capable of floating/bluffing this way. Which means that we need to know more about the opponent to make such moves and against unknown we rather prefer not to do that.

      Hope it makes sense. :P If not just don't worry to ask again. :)
    • Avatars91
      Avatars91
      Bronze
      Joined: 18.12.2009 Posts: 2,689
      It's more about how we see the opponent, how the opponent sees us and if he is capable of floating/bluffing this way. Which means that we need to know more about the opponent to make such moves and against unknown we rather prefer not to do that. Hope it makes sense. If not just don't worry to ask again.


      It certainly does make sense.

      Though what I am struggling regarding this is –
      1) how to obtain this information if we don't really have a check/calling range in that spot as a default (I mean, at least I don't/won't)?

      We are never getting to showdowns that would enable us to see that he indeed is the kind of guy who plays his floats/bluffs this way + neither can we assume that from simply knowing that he floats the flop wide and folds to a lot of 2nd barrels.

      Sooner or later we have to take some risks and start check/calling on such turns after cBetting flops if we want to develop such a dynamic/get information (which I assume we should really do. At least certainly if he folds a lot to our 2nd barrels and does not pay us off OTT).

      2) If that is true, should it be something we'd have to do with a bit stronger hands in the beginning, such as relatively weak top-pairs?
    • EmanuelC16
      EmanuelC16
      Bronze
      Joined: 02.01.2010 Posts: 13,908

      1) how to obtain this information if we don't really have a check/calling range in that spot as a default (I mean, at least I don't/won't)?


      Think about constructing such a range. Also, try to not cap it really low with hands like QT or worse. Think about how you can add some decent TP hands, maybe a tricky played set combo or two against aggro opponents. You start to not face only calling stations so they won't play that bad when you barrel you KJ or QQ type hand anyway.

      I simply dislike the cbet on the flop if we call it just for value. We are getting called by worse on the flop sometimes but he also folds a big part of his air. This means his floats have some equity and his turn and river bluffs will be more value heavy than when we check flop.

      Now, cbetting can still be done if we are aware of dynamics and board texture development. Once we cbet we can definitely get called by worse. However, we need to consider how often can we bluffcatch and how often can we turn our hand into a bluff and on what developments? KK 3bets pre, we block some KQ, KT and TT, sets don't slowplay til river anyway so on different good cards such as A, J or 9 you might wanna consider turning your hand into a bluff or even on blanks to get your opponent to fold top pair. This is very very ambitious though and I don't want to do it as a default because people always call more than they theoretically should AND in many cases we bluff too often without even realizing how weak our range there actually is.
    • Avatars91
      Avatars91
      Bronze
      Joined: 18.12.2009 Posts: 2,689
      So what do you say about cBetting flop + turn with this hand with 0 information and history? +EV and likely the best we can do in vacuum but likely not optimal vs him in the long term?

      Think about how you can add some decent TP hands, maybe a tricky played set combo or two against aggro opponents.


      What are the criteria that has to be met for us to suddenly decide upon such tricky moves with such hands?

      E.g., a standard line such as bet flop + bet turn = still more appropriate on micro stakes as there is tremendous value from them calling light, whereas a bit higher (NL50, NL100?) we already have to develop more optimal lines for our ranges in various spots and thus we have to obtain some info via tricky plays?

      An illustration:

      In this particular spot it ought to be OK to just bet flop+turn with QT but the higher we move up in stakes, the more we have to develop our game, thus we should look for ways how to make check/calling possible or more attractive in this spot vs people who don't double float/call light on the turn. Thus before we start doing it, we take KJ, for example, and check/call turn+river after cBetting the flop (on an identical board structure as this) to see whether we can catch him red-handed + get info + defend our checking range on the turn (not sure we need to defend it all that much though)?

      If he shows us AJ, we just take a note and start incorporating wider check/calling ranges on the turn after flop cBets?
    • EmanuelC16
      EmanuelC16
      Bronze
      Joined: 02.01.2010 Posts: 13,908
      The stakes aren't what matter, it's the player type. When you say unknown and without history you should play against what your average opponent at that stake does. I find it almost impossible for someone to be unknown to me because I always get small pieces of information: stack size, how many tables, avatar, screen name. This is before he is dealt any hand. Once he plays a hand I see whether he limps, folds, raises, I see bet sizing, timing, maybe he likes to use the chat box.

      Back to the hand:

      When you are OOP the idea of betting for thin value and the added benefit of free showdown doesn't work because the player IP can always bet an extra street which is not what you wanted. If you bet it has to be for value/thin value but the free showdown extra benefit doesn't exist. Furthermore, you will quite often face a range of K2s+ (against players you could potentially vbet QT type hand like you have here) in which case barreling for value becomes thinner. You say you bet against fish but these fish hit top pair more than you in some cases. Did you think about how thin your value bet actually is in that case? How many worse hands than QT must they call and not bluff you on the river to justify a bet/bet/check line?

      OOP is rarely the place to make money, especially not big money in big pots.

      LE: Regarding your second question, if you only bet/fold, bet/call or check/fold turns after a cbet, guess what happens when you check? You bleed money. Don't construct a range where your opponent doesn't even have to try to exploit you and just does it. Whenever you show up only with 'air' (hands that fold) you lose money UNLESS you are reading your opponent's range well and it has only the nuts.
    • Avatars91
      Avatars91
      Bronze
      Joined: 18.12.2009 Posts: 2,689
      Did you think about how thin your value bet actually is in that case? How many worse hands than QT must they call and not bluff you on the river to justify a bet/bet/check line?


      Of course that is a very thin vBet and basically I am not really extremely happy to get called there on the turn, but if all we know is his stack size + the fact that he limped is it not a perfectly fine way to play the hand, i.e., the easy way out?
      2nd barreling as a default ought to be +EV given that he also folds a lot of hands that float wide on the flop, which may bluff us otherwise out of the pot if we go for the check/call line on the turn. You said yourself that once we check/call the turn, the hands that he floats the flop wide with frequently will have decent equity (some overs and/or GSs etc.).
      Yes, double barreling is not optimal with QT here in long term, but it is still +EV and this way we avoid a lot of mistakes and that is quite the benefit already. Check/folding as a default with such little info is bad and check/calling as a default with such little info = guessing.

      And if we want to develop a much better gameplan than just "make the easy plays to avoid mistakes", then why not do it like I suggested? Am I overlooking something?

      we should look for ways how to make check/calling possible or more attractive in this spot vs people who don't double float/call light on the turn. Thus before we start doing it, we take KJ, for example, and check/call turn+river after cBetting the flop (on an identical board structure as this) to see whether we can catch him red-handed + get info + defend our checking range on the turn (not sure we need to defend it all that much though)? If he shows us AJ, we just take a note and start incorporating wider check/calling ranges on the turn after flop cBets?
    • EmanuelC16
      EmanuelC16
      Bronze
      Joined: 02.01.2010 Posts: 13,908
      I just don't cbet the flop and no longer face a filtered, if you will, turn range or bet vs missed cbet range. Now he has all the preflop hands that he can bet with as a complete bluff, he didn't select his hand and fold his complete air vs a bet. Sure, he doesn't bet ALL is air but definitely has it more than when he calls.

      These aren't hands you miss value with by checking since nobody is calling down more than 2 streets with worse. Those 2 streets can be turn and river or you can include a flop call somewhere when you call his bet instead of cbetting yourself. You also have some backdoor equity, get free cards induce lighter bluffs and value bets. Everything works out quite nicely both for your hand and your range.

      Whenever you take different lines/actions you split your range so it will usually be impossible to have a good range for each line. You need quite a wide starting range which you continously split with each different action. If you cbet this on the flop, you don't check/call with it. If you check/call with it, you don't cbet and don't have it in your checking range on the turn, do you? There are ways to make that happen sometimes by doing something like this: red Q you cbet and black Q you don't when you have QT or use backdoor draws to decide whether you want to pot control and see more cards or 'take the easy way out' as you put it. :)

      Not cbetting all made hands seems very strange for most people, but it's not 2010 anymore. People play a lot better against cbets nowadays so it's the check as PFR that they don't know how to play against.
    • Avatars91
      Avatars91
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      Joined: 18.12.2009 Posts: 2,689
      Sure, check/calling on the flop is also an option.

      It just doesn't seem like a great/easy option without much more info on villain's aggression and other important data. At least not if we end up facing a flop + turn bet very often (which I have found to be the case).

      Whenever we check/call on the flop we basically turn our hand face-up – we never have anything too strong (unless we balance). So whether or not our check/call line will be successful depends on whether or not our opponent thinks a little bit something like this: "OK, this guy can't have a strong hand here and I'm sitting here with a mediocre hand (be it a weak pair or overs/backdoors) – whatever, I barrel til he folds" or "Let's see if I can make him fold on the flop, if not, I at least get a free river card". Either way this doesn't seem attractive with QT in vacuum. Because our subsequent check/calls on the turn/river will be wild guesses most of the time (that's bad) and he still will have equity and thus frequent value barrels as well + even if he does not barrel on turn+river he gets crucial free cards. That just doesn't sound like a great spot

      A few sidequestions relevant to this context:
      1) What else are you check/calling on such flops and vs whom?
      2) Are you making guess calls on turn+river with the check/call line on the flop, or do they just frequently give up in your games to make it profitable?

      There is another point that needs to be considered when comparing double barreling vs ch/calling flop in this particular spot.

      We are up against an openlimper, which means that overall we can expect quite a few passive tendencies postflop on average from him as well (which is speaking against a ch/c line on the flop).
      That, in turn, means that we can expect fewer bluffs when we check/call + there is a lot of value in betting the flop as he passively calls not only with gutshots, weaker Tx and Ax hands, but sometimes even small pairs. It's not even impossible for such a guy to call with a significant part of this weaker range on the turn as well (plus we get the chance to bet on the river in a bigger pot if we hit trips or 2pair).
    • EmanuelC16
      EmanuelC16
      Bronze
      Joined: 02.01.2010 Posts: 13,908
      If I'm aware villain can go bonkers when I check as PFR I check/call 3 streets with AK for example. On average they bet flop often, check turn about half of the time and most often give up on rivers. Unlike 90% of the population on NL25 I didn't use to cbet 100% of my range on that flop so I have good hands both in my checking and my betting range. I'm not worried about hand being face up or anything of the sort. For that to be a concern you need you actually have a weak range when you check (your range is weaker if you cbet QT type hands than when you check them usually) and you need your opponent to actively barrel A LOT! Just because he can bluff you SOMETIMES doesn't mean he will bluff often enough to make you lose money.

      Seems to be you are over-concerned with protection. That's the worst concept thought to beginners just behind betting/raising for information. You are a lot beyond a beginner now imo but you have that reflex of seeing bad cards everywhere. If he has a hand that hit those cards you find scary, chances are he will float the flop anyway so now you give up or put in more money in a bigger pot when that card comes. You don't make him fold AJ or anything like that if you bet here and the value is quite marginal since he has 9 outs to make the best hand, more scare cards, implied odds (not many) and position. What is more, you don't make him fold AT or Kx with 2 bets so you put in money against that whether you bet or check. All you do is usually make him fold undercards and build a pot to give his bluffs better profitability AND weaken your OOP check range to basically just air.

      Everyone responds better to aggression when IP, doesn't matter what player type he is. I don't think you are just guessing. You constantly assess his range and actions.. What you mean is that his range is wider if you check and you personally aren't confident in your actions but that's not guessing that's probably just something you can now work on. Bad cards come all the time, it's your job to act accordingly and recognise them correctly.
    • Avatars91
      Avatars91
      Bronze
      Joined: 18.12.2009 Posts: 2,689
      I'm not worried about hand being face up or anything of the sort. For that to be a concern you need you actually have a weak range when you check


      But is your range ever strong there as a default? If you check only weak top-pairs and 2nd pairs (and I would assume that you would have to have a good reason to get tricky with a set/monster/anything else) in theory you do have a weak range. Even if you add a set combo or two, it will still be mostly consisting of weak pairs.

      Even if you do balance your checking range so that it includes more than just a few strong combos, it does not matter because your perceived range looks weak there because it is also standard on NL25 to expect from your opposition to cBet the strong hands and check the weaker ones.
      Thus, if they see a check they basically never put you on a strong hand even if you do have them in your range. Unless you have got to a showdown with a strong hand and they have noticed it and taken a note.

      I don't think you are just guessing. You constantly assess his range and actions.. What you mean is that his range is wider if you check and you personally aren't confident in your actions but that's not guessing that's probably just something you can now work on. Bad cards come all the time, it's your job to act accordingly and recognise them correctly.


      Are you check/calling all blank turns vs any relatively unknown guy as a default?
      I mean, the board is important, but so is the opponent. And when it comes to assessing whether "this guy is bluffing here a decent % overall" we basically are guessing.

      Unless, of course, you can reassure that this indeed is true and that I can trust it as a good piece of information:

      On average they bet flop often, check turn about half of the time and most often give up on rivers.


      If such is the case then I have little to add because I obviously don't have as much experience, especially with check/calling here. Will have to trust you on this one.

      But anyway, do you really think that check/calling this hand on the flop is the best play even vs passive fish?

      I can say that I've been doublebarreling such hands vs these kind of opponents very successfully so far. Basically 2 streets of value. Whereas if I check they either check behind or make a weird small bet. And when they do bet it really does seem like guessing because, well, they are often passive postflop and we should in general not like to see them show much aggression.

      You see, I'm not worried about protection that much here. I'm worried about making incorrect calls vs people who we may falsely perceive as capable of multi-barrel-bluffing when we call + I'm worried about us making incorrect folds when they do bluff. Because the only information we have, usually (sometimes there are betsize/timing tells), is our perceived "average" of that certain limit.
    • EmanuelC16
      EmanuelC16
      Bronze
      Joined: 02.01.2010 Posts: 13,908
      My range has to be at least strong enough to call based on pot odds vs villain's range. It's not absolute strength it's always, always relative. There's so much to discuss always when presenting a different line than the default one. I don't even say it's the best for everyone or even if it's the best for most people. I could write pages even on the most basic decision which is why some like my style very much and some don't: I rant a lot a lot and try to digg deeper than black/white, call/fold, bet/check.

      You have probably noticed that I really focus on discussing instead of just giving a definitive answer because there almost never is a universally correct answer. I also noticed you are active in this format so that's perfect for you. Don't mindlessly take for granted what I say. I can be wrong for different reasons. Read, think, analyze, bring your own ideas in. That's how you make good progress.

      We will never reach a definitive answer here but I can indeed confirm that most players are passive enough on the river that you can check/call. At NL25 and NL50 they were when I was playing back in spring. Try it, see a few showdowns and go from there imo. They usually bet river with hands that call your flop and turn cbets that beat you.

      Against passive player I'm not that concerned about getting bluffed. IF he bets, he bets hands he calls with anyway that are ahead of us but can also bluff. He doesn't bet more better hands than ours than he calls with unless we can cbet our hand as a bluff here. I'm also not concerned about missing value because 90% of the time I get the 2 streets on turn and river or he bets flop and we proceed from there. You see, even though it's a different line/style, we are sort of agreeing and focusing on getting 2 streets of value.
    • Avatars91
      Avatars91
      Bronze
      Joined: 18.12.2009 Posts: 2,689
      I could write pages even on the most basic decision which is why some like my style very much and some don't: I rant a lot a lot and try to digg deeper than black/white, call/fold, bet/check.


      I would very much enjoy if you could write pages and pages on these subjects but I understand it's very time consuming. I also wish I was less a pain in the ass but I just cannot take, as you put it well, everything for granted and there is always a way to look even deeper into these kind of matters.

      But thank you very much for your time. This format = absolute nuts.

      He doesn't bet more better hands than ours than he calls


      Is that really the case? We are after all talking about a passive opponent who calls more readily than he bets (hence he is passive) himself.
      We can expect him to float the flop with all sorts of hands that he may not bet with himself such as straightdraws, Ax, worse Tx, 99, 88, and, depending on how bad he his, even worse pairs.

      Thus I am not sure I like to play this hand vs such a guy's bet VS missedCbet range range as much as I would like to bet myself, which, given his passivity, seems more appropriate. Everything is cool if he just checks the flop and a blank turn comes – we do get our 2 streets of value – but if he bets I already feel a bit uncomfortable calling the flop, especially since it may be so that in the occasions when he does decide to pull a bluff he may as well just try to barrel me off (I get this impression that fish frequently have difficulty letting go off their bluffs) but it's difficult for me to call because I also know that his flop betting range is already stronger (as there are too many hands that he considers to be a standard check in that spot).

      Also, when he does check, I think we may get a bit less value on the river than we get on the turn by betting flop+turn as opposed to turn+river. Just simply because there are still hands that he may spike additional draw equity on the turn whereas on the river there are no draws anymore. I also don't think that he necessarily bluffs missed draws on the river all the time, especially if they have showdown value, which they frequently do (or he at least thinks they do) such as A highs and midpairs, which may have spiked a backdoor OTT.
    • EmanuelC16
      EmanuelC16
      Bronze
      Joined: 02.01.2010 Posts: 13,908
      Can't post much now, just wanted to say I meant I could write pages and pages I meant that there is. blot to consider on each decision, it's sick! I never thought poker is so deep when I started off. Will try and return with a post tomorrow.
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