Fictional hand analysis

    • kavboj84
      kavboj84
      Gold
      Joined: 16.06.2011 Posts: 2,007
      Hi,

      I created this thread to analyze interesting situations not based on real life examples but on mere fiction.

      First example:

      Hero has 88 in the small blind, villain is a standard TAG and raises from MP2. We 3bet and the flop is A22 rainbow.

      My question is: Do we want to c-bet ?

      - If we do then it will be a clear value cut, villain has to fold every worse hand and only calls with better. Its also awkward that we must face the same situation on the turn unless an 8 comes.
      - If we dont then our hand is face up, and we become an easy target for a bluff. Or could we develop a balanced check range for such situations ?
  • 35 replies
    • Avataren
      Avataren
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      Joined: 28.04.2010 Posts: 1,621
      cbet 100% imo
    • kavboj84
      kavboj84
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      Joined: 16.06.2011 Posts: 2,007
      Whats the reason behind your c-bet ? And whats your plan for the turn ?
    • Avataren
      Avataren
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      Joined: 28.04.2010 Posts: 1,621
      to get him to give me value and my plan is to cbet almost any turn. K or a Q i would probably slow down on. but other than that i dont see us being behind almost never. if he raises turn im folding.
    • zumpar
      zumpar
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      Joined: 05.02.2012 Posts: 1,185
      unless your 3b is super crazy in these spots so he will defend wide like A9s-AJ

      i would 2 barrel and probably overjam river if possible this all day long unless the runout is horrible like Q,J ... he will fold all of his underpairs, AK is unlikely and he will have a very hard time calling AQ on the river...

      hence he has only a very small amount of AK combos that just flatted pre and a small amount of AQ's he will likely even fold on the river


      and no, its not about the value, like Avataren said, u pretty much turn this into a bluff from the flop .... what the heck do you wanna get value from? KQ?

      another option is to just c/f the flop if he calls down really light, you can absolutely never c/c flop since it turns your hand so face up anyone competent will 3barrel you off anything


      nevertheless, i dont know why you would just choose to 3b it pre vs MP2 i think this is just like the nut hand to just flat with, even from SB
    • madorjan
      madorjan
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      Joined: 13.11.2009 Posts: 5,561
      Lol, who let the NL players loose here?:)

      Just to be ontopic a bit: kavboj, if you don't cbet this hand here, what's your plan? Also, if you check this, what other hands would you consider checking here?

      I think it all comes down to the purpose of cbetting in general, which is sadly rarely discussed anywhere, cause cbetting 100% is so standard for most (and to me as well btw:D ), but if you get a good idea of cbetting in general, you'll see why it's suggested to cbet 100% here.

      A more interesting question comes up on the turn IMO, with this hand you can go fairly deep into bigbet-street play, so nice hand.
    • zumpar
      zumpar
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      Joined: 05.02.2012 Posts: 1,185
      oops, FL, sorry, never mind my comment :D
    • kavboj84
      kavboj84
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      Joined: 16.06.2011 Posts: 2,007
      Originally posted by madorjan
      Lol, who let the NL players loose here?:)

      Just to be ontopic a bit: kavboj, if you don't cbet this hand here, what's your plan? Also, if you check this, what other hands would you consider checking here?

      I think it all comes down to the purpose of cbetting in general, which is sadly rarely discussed anywhere, cause cbetting 100% is so standard for most (and to me as well btw:D ), but if you get a good idea of cbetting in general, you'll see why it's suggested to cbet 100% here.

      A more interesting question comes up on the turn IMO, with this hand you can go fairly deep into bigbet-street play, so nice hand.
      This is the range that villain can call hero down with


      Board : A:diamond: 2:heart: 2:spade:
             Equity Win Tie
      MP2        91.75%  91.59%     0.16% { 99+, A9s+, ATo+ }
      BB          8.25%   8.09%     0.16% { 88 }


      and hero wont get a fold in 54% of the time. I dont have a plan, but being a barrel monkey in this spot is just burning money,so I guess there might be a better option.

      edit:

      Madi how does your bet and check range look like in case you get a check here from a TAG ?
    • onerking
      onerking
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      Joined: 02.06.2011 Posts: 191
      100%cbeting was always my biggest why the fak we do this thing in my poker career. Funny that everybody use it, but just a few understand it why he cbeting (or he thinks he know it but wrong). Thats why I like your question, finally somebody query this . Further back i discussed this subject with madorjan a lot and due to him i realized that 100% cbeting is simplifed balancing concept. We can earn a higher defensive value (= our ranges ev for worst case scenarios) for our ranges with using a check strategy on the flop but that will complicate our game (hard to use in pratice properly.. more decision point to memorize and figure out how it change due the board texture.. I tried it.. ). Once I began make experiments how change my ranges ev if I cbet 100% from that if try to use a check strategy on the Flop and it came to light that the results are very very close to eachother and then i said fak gto. But on some Flop texture in raised pots I still use check strategy ip ie: 986r cause my bet/calldown hands too many times would pay extra money to villain value raise and for other smaller reasons but 100% cbeting is mostly depends on range asymmetry ..mostly.. (I wouldnt like to pan out everything about this cause we can debate for a month)
      By the way in 3bet pots I always cbeting on the Flop just for simplicity reasons.
    • Avataren
      Avataren
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      Joined: 28.04.2010 Posts: 1,621
      Originally posted by zumpar
      oops, FL, sorry, never mind my comment :D
      :D second/third time in 2 - 3 days we get a visit from NL players :D
    • kavboj84
      kavboj84
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      Joined: 16.06.2011 Posts: 2,007
      @ onerking : yeah simplification can be an answer, but not an ultimate one for sure. Im pretty sure that this isnt the one and only spot when c-betting is not the best option, even OOP Im more tempted to check in cases like this to get a more sophisticated play. It really depends on the opponents reaction, and to be honest most TAGs wouldnt even know how to handle a check here, because they expect 100% c-bet. Therefore in the first place I would check 100% instead of betting 100%, which doesnt change my range at all, but would pass the inconvenience of making a tough decision to my opponent.
    • onerking
      onerking
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      Joined: 02.06.2011 Posts: 191
      Originally posted by kavboj84
      @ onerking : yeah simplification can be an answer, but not an ultimate one for sure. Im pretty sure that this isnt the one and only spot when c-betting is not the best option
      In an exploitative sense we can find a lot of spots when cbeting is not the max ev solution with some hands.
    • Boomer2k10
      Boomer2k10
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      Joined: 22.09.2010 Posts: 2,551
      Originally posted by kavboj84
      Originally posted by madorjan
      Lol, who let the NL players loose here?:)

      Just to be ontopic a bit: kavboj, if you don't cbet this hand here, what's your plan? Also, if you check this, what other hands would you consider checking here?

      I think it all comes down to the purpose of cbetting in general, which is sadly rarely discussed anywhere, cause cbetting 100% is so standard for most (and to me as well btw:D ), but if you get a good idea of cbetting in general, you'll see why it's suggested to cbet 100% here.

      A more interesting question comes up on the turn IMO, with this hand you can go fairly deep into bigbet-street play, so nice hand.
      This is the range that villain can call hero down with


      Board : A:diamond: 2:heart: 2:spade:
             Equity Win Tie
      MP2        91.75%  91.59%     0.16% { 99+, A9s+, ATo+ }
      BB          8.25%   8.09%     0.16% { 88 }


      and hero wont get a fold in 54% of the time. I dont have a plan, but being a barrel monkey in this spot is just burning money,so I guess there might be a better option.

      edit:

      Madi how does your bet and check range look like in case you get a check here from a TAG ?
      Why do you need to get a fold 54% of the time?

      You are getting 7-1 to bet at this flop, if your opponent folds > 12.5% of the time you profit by default from your continuation bet so they are hardly peeling this flop with the nuts if they're trying to play in a way that makes your c-bet unprofitable. (They will have to peel all K-High hands and even a couple of Q-High combos). If they fold more than that it's a profitable bet by default and you don't give away any info about the strength of your hand or give free cards to someone with 6+ outs
    • kavboj84
      kavboj84
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      Joined: 16.06.2011 Posts: 2,007
      When I wrote "call down", I didnt mean just peeling the flop, but going to showdown, so you cant take only one street into account. The 54% which is approximately villains WTS in this case comes from the 29% rule of calling down with the intention of showdown. That range is what I gave there and this makes 54% of villains possible combos. Unless an 8 comes, hero will be phucked at showdown, and this happens approx. 0.92*0.54 ~ 50% of the time.

      And this is exactly the reason why I chose this hand, because value of this hand usually comes from its showdown value and in this spot if you barrel all the way you barely beat anything at showdown with it, so you have no showdown value practically.

      And why would I give away any information about my hand strenght? How much more information do you get from a 100% checking range compared to a 100% cbet range ? How would you react if you were the villain and got 100% checked here ?

      Giving freecards could be more of an issue, but considering our overall range this might be make the upper part of our range more profitable, as the villain can make the second best hand on the turn and can pay off more often. What we have here most of the time is a lot better than a pair of eights. Also you are a 70-30 favorite against the hands you are giving freecards to, and most of the turn cards (everything else than T,J,Q,K) dont change your equity.
    • madorjan
      madorjan
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      Joined: 13.11.2009 Posts: 5,561
      Wow, pretty nice discussion so far, keep it going, guys - this might even turn out a valuable thread for non-beginner players - such a rarity.

      But let's go ontopic a bit: my main (personal) problem is that I analyzed these spots in the balance-glasses mostly, so these might not make sense too much in exploitation, but still - cbetting is a balancing act, so yeah.

      Kavboj: against a check here, I mostly presume Villain has an imbalanced range. If Villain would have a good sense of balance, he'd realise that his range is way too strong to have a checking range here. This comes from the following: range asymmetry (LDO), and range polarization. We have the stronger range (and not even by a margin), and we have the more polarized range, since the kind of "useless" hands take up much bigger % of our range, than his. You made a very good point with 3barreling 88 - it would be a bluff more than anything else. It's not for value, that's certain.

      The stuff above means that Villain is much less likely to bet a wide range, to bet for thin value once we check (with a balanced range), therefore our valuehands suffer a lot, and also our bluffs suffer a bit, since we expect him to fold at least a balanced range, but probably more on this board. Now the question comes down to this: does checking some in-the-middle hands worth it, if we have to sacrifice a lot of EV with our valuerange and bluffrange as well. Not even mentioning that it majorly screws up turn and river ranges. (If we check here with all our WMHs, what do we check the turn with? Nothing is pretty bad IMO, but then we'd have to cbet with some of our WMHs just to have a turn checking range, destroying the foundation of our flop strategy.) I have no mathematical proof, but everything points to the direction that it doesn't. I defintiely admit, that in a perfect world we'd check the flop sometimes, but it complicates our decision tree to an extent that - I believe - is humanly impossible to get to and apply.

      With 88 exactly a good exploitative reasoning could be that we want to protect our hand - not just against 6 outers, but also against the possible RIO and RIFEq that we'll get by checking. This alone probably makes betting the best decision, but if you add the balance perspective, I believe it's a no-brainer.

      @cbetting in general: using pure strategies for the sake of comfort is not an ultimate argument, but it's probably more of a reason than most can imagine. The problem is that dividing your range in general is a move that is really hard to balance - not just because you have to play that street with a perfect range, but also because you'll have to shape your range so that it could remain balanced on later streets as well. Now that is a pretty shitty job, and probably includes mixed strategies to an extent that is humanly impossible to remember and apply. Therefore using close-to-balanced pure strategies is a good way to simplify our decision tree so we'd have to worry less about our ranges.

      I hope everything was clear, if not, let me know.
    • zereles11
      zereles11
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      Joined: 27.03.2013 Posts: 37
      i think cbeting with 88 on that situation has fold equity agains 6 outers hands, it might fold an 99 on some high boards and it's part of our balancing range so he wont be able to fold weaks Ax when we bet..

      Anyway i think it's not wrong to check OOP PPs and some Ax on Ax boards to induce a predictable behavior from our opponent (ex: he always bet Ax and PPs and check benhind Kx, Qx )
    • kavboj84
      kavboj84
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      Joined: 16.06.2011 Posts: 2,007
      @madorjan : No not quite :D . If you say that villains range is too strong to have a checking range then why do you say that its unlikely for him to bet the flop once we check ? Also if the check keeps our balance but brings villain to imbalance isnt that a situation that we could turn to our advantage ?

      And if 88 is a bluff in our range, what better hands will it make fold in villains range ?

      I'd really like to see examples, how a good bet and check-behind range looks like, because I have ideas but Im not even sure myself really.

      The point when you say that the top of our range looses value makes it interesting. Cause if villain doesnt want to loose value as well, he has to bet and this board hits his range as well. Does he check back any Ax ? If not then his range will be relatively weak on blank turn cards, also if his flop range will be too A heavy, but which hands is will he fold then to a x/r on the flop or latter on the turn ? Does he fold an A with a weak kicker ? or if he bluffs with two broardway type o hands then those ? Do we have then protection with a x/r against these ?

      Couldnt give us a 100% x flop more room to play than the std 100% cbet ? We may have more fold equtiy if we x/r (turning 88 into a bluff on the flop ?), we could get action from weaker made hands that only would play WA/WB, we could induce bluffs from hands that he'd just fold, so if you could put more action in a lot more things can happen compared to betting down.
    • madorjan
      madorjan
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      Joined: 13.11.2009 Posts: 5,561
      Yeah, that was obv a typo on my part, our range is stronger, not his. My range vs my range in that situation would be:


      Board: A:spade: 2:heart: 2:diamond:
             Equity     Win     Tie
      MP2    57.89%  54.43%   3.46% { 77+, A8s+, ATo+, KTs+, KJo+ }
      MP3    42.11%  38.65%   3.46% { 55+, A7s+, KTs+, QTs+, JTs, T9s, A9o+, KTo+, QJo }


      So as you can see we have a fairly huge advantage on our side, 57% is quite remarkable in most postflop scenarios (it may be just slightly high in tight-range + dry board situation).

      I'm not sure where you get the idea of Villain being imbalanced given we check, but that's not necessarily the case (however, that statement can be applied generally, where there's an imbalance in our opponent's strategy).

      88 being a bluff I meant in a balanced perspective, meaning it's closer to the bottom of our range than to the top, suggesting that valuebetting 88 on later streets is a much more ridicoulous idea than bluffing it - tho I think it's pretty clear we shouldn't do either.

      I'm not sure if I get the 4th paragraph right, but the main point is that if we have a balanced checking range, Villain is not as inclined to bet as our range would be. Therefore if he plays perfectly against us, the end result will be far less bets going in on the flop - which hurts us more than him, because we have the stronger range.

      A 100% flop check is even worse than a mixed strategy, since then our opponent is even less inclined to valuebet anything other than the "nuts", resulting in huge loss of value for us. You're right, we're gonna get a bit more fold equity (exploitatively, in balance it shouldn't matter), however that's not necessarily a good thing for our range (mostly the nutty valuehands), and even then, 88 is probably not a c/r bluff, QJs, KTs and KJo are probably more than enough for the bluffing purposes.
    • kavboj84
      kavboj84
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      Joined: 16.06.2011 Posts: 2,007
      aaahh so that was it, but even tough its clear for me now, you misunderstood my very first question. I wasnt interested in your personal opening and 3betting ranges, but in a (balanced?) range you would bet the flop with if you had the range of MP2 in the example, that is {66+,A8s+,KTs+,QTs+,JTs,ATo+,KJo+} and your opponents range is {77+,ATs+,KQs,AJo+}. So I meant the "PS standard" ranges given in Equilab and also that villain flats his range pre which is also something like a standard nowadays.

      But you mentioned now that you'd bet the nuts only, is that serious ? I doubt that would be a balanced range. And yeah if someone plays like this then c-betting is a must, but I think someone in MP2-s shoes who doesnt want to miss value himself should bet this flop quite often, even if its thin for him. It is a must for him as well, as it would be for us to c-bet against an utterly passive opponent.

      BTW how is that you 3bet this light ? KTs, KJo ... thats preety thin, I wonder how could those be +EV 3bets against an agressive player like yourself. I would rather 3bet QJs and JTs than KJo, they have a bit less equity, but better implied odds and a lot better playability.
    • madorjan
      madorjan
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      Joined: 13.11.2009 Posts: 5,561
      Oh, I actually skipped over that question, sry bout that. I just put in my range vs my range to show how huge the range asymmetry is. But the problem is, that PS default ranges are not really useful.

      It's pretty hard to work with "PS default" ranges, cause they're built up in a fashion that totally disregards balance, mostly focusing on hot-cold equity, and also less applicable in today's games (nits are not as common these days sadly). Working with those ranges actually makes 88 a clear bluff (it's in the bottom 18% of our overall range on this board) - you can see, why these preflop ranges don't make sense in a balance discussion - they're an exploitative preflop range, therefore we should continue exploiting our opponent postflop.

      But back to your question: honestly, I have no idea how my balanced betting range would look like in this case, most people cbet 100% in this situation, and if they don't, they're most likely unbalanced (having weak pairs like JJ-77, rarely K hi, rarely a random screwplay) - so I haven't worked on this at all. My first guess would be to bet the top30-40% of my range for value, and have an appropriate bluffing range. You should probably check back a couple of strong combos, so your checkback range wouldn't get all that capped, but in all honesty, I don't think it's super important you won't really be able to restrict Villain's vbetting range by all that much.

      I put the nuts in quotation marks, suggesting I'd valuebet much less thinly than generally. And also, if we wanna remain balanced, we need to bluff as well. So saying "he should bet more" is level 2 thinking here - you think he thinks on level 1 (wants to get value), therefore you think on level 2 - however, if he knows you want to exploit him, cause he wants to get value, he will be pretty reluctant to bet. When I said "our range wants to get value" I didn't mean it in an exploitative sense, more just saying that a high range asymmetry situation demands us to focus on value much more than anything else.

      My 3betting range is wide partially because of the reason I mentioned above, but mostly because opening ranges are wider these days. If you look at the PS SHC, I think it suggests something like 13% from UTG (and the 3betting range is based on that), while most people open more like 16-20% from UTG these days. But also having a tight 3betting range is always an exploitative adjustment, since your range will be really screwed up postflop, especially on A and K hi boards (see this example). Thirdly, you're 3betting from the SB in this example, which makes us even more prone to 3betting. Given all these, we may even widen it, but that would be my default range. QJs would be definitely in there, not sure why I didn't include that, JTs would be a bit of a stretch.

      Also just a quick note: implied odds and playability are unknown concepts in balance (obviously it is included in our strategy).
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