Minraising

    • DavidNegranu
      DavidNegranu
      Bronze
      Joined: 25.11.2012 Posts: 160
      Hi,

      How should you interpret a minraise post flop from an experienced, strong player and how should you interpret it from a weaker player? Is there a difference and is it generally strong? I tend to get minraised when I have complete air so I am struggling so gain enough information to evaluate the move for myself.
  • 3 replies
    • DrDunne
      DrDunne
      Bronze
      Joined: 29.12.2010 Posts: 3,338
      Hi DavidNegranu

      it's pretty difficult to answer your questions... for example, a minraise on the river is much much more stronger than a minraise on the turn, and in the same way a minraise on the turn is much more stronger than a minraise on the flop. so i guess as a general rule of thumb you should interpret it as stronger the further the hand progresses but this is not necessarily always the case...

      for some people a minraise *might* be a way of "figuring out where they are at in the hand" - similar to those annoying donkbets - or it might be with a TP hand. or it might be a total bluff. or it might be the nuts. most of the time a minraise will be polarising i.e. either the nuts or complete air (or a draw), but i would definitely not be surprised to see some weirdly played middle pair hand playing this way as well.

      so what can you do? there are a couple of things. first off, understand that it really depends on who your opponents are: take notes on how people play their top pairs, how they play their draws, their air, and then how they play the nuts. this should give you some insight - for example if you see someone slowplaying a monster a couple of times, it is very possible that they tend to always do this and therefore a minraise from this player might be weighted heavily towards non-nutted hands (however not necessarily bluffs).

      next (and i definitely recommend this), you could go into your holdem manager/pokertracker. take as big a sample of hands as you can, so preferably your lifetime graph. then find a filter for the following:
      1) situations where you were minraised on the flop + saw a showdown
      2) situations where you were minraised on the turn + saw a showdown
      3) situations where you were minraised on the river + saw a showdown

      not sure exactly what the names of these filters will be but it shouldnt be too difficult. once you've done that, take a pen/paper/notepad/excel and write down what you see people do this with. in all likelihood you'll see a wide range of craziness, but a general pattern should emerge.

      also, something else you should do is work on your understanding of board textures. most importantly, why are you betting with air on board textures where you will get played back at? surely the logical thing would be to take a look at these spots and simply stop investing money. for example, i wouldnt expect too many minraises on a K:spade: 7:heart: 4:club: board. conversely, i'd expect many less folds on a 8:diamond: 6:diamond: 5:spade: board. on a dry board it is difficult for anyone to have anything so most of the time the PFA will take the pot down with a cbet. on the other hand, a wet board hits the preflop-caller a fair amount and therefore we should expect less folds and more minraises. this is ofc very generally speaking but your questions are quite general themselves.

      with that said, if a fishy player is minraising AND he is very passive (we should assume passivity as a default), then the easy solution is to just let him take his pot - he most likely has a hand. if a fishy & aggressive guy is minraising, he can also have a hand but it's really impossible to say. if a competent and solid player is minraising you then my guess would either be that he's figured out that you fold - even to a minraise - and therefore his bluff doesnt need to be very big to work against you.... or most likely he's actually not as competent as you first thought :D

      hope that helps. and maybe some of the other guys here could give you their opinions/experiences because i think we all have our ways of dealing with these spots.
    • DavidNegranu
      DavidNegranu
      Bronze
      Joined: 25.11.2012 Posts: 160
      Hi,

      Thanks for your reply. I predominantly play zoom online which is why my questions were pretty vague and generic because there is very rarely any history at all. However, the minraise that is bugging me the most is one that happened live. I was playing a £1/£2 table at a casino with some friends (it was my first time playing there) and I had been playing really tight. I raised from early position with A :spade: Q :spade: and the player one seat to my left called and the BB called. Again because it was my first time playing there, there wasnt much history but from the couple of rounds I'd played he seemed like a good player, I would estimate late 20% vpip and pretty aggressive. Flop came K :spade: 8 :diamond: 2 :club: . BB checked, i led for 60% pot figuring it was a flop that missed both of my opponents a huge amount of the time and my early position raising range is so strong that there are only one or two hands which arent made by this point and then the player on my left min raised me. BB folded and I folded. I still have no idea if I was bluffed or not and whether or not if I am in a similar situation in the future if I should play back at him or if he flopped huge and was hoping I had AK and would ship over the top. (I was only playing 50BBs at this point) Obviously because the board is so dry he's most likely flopped a set? or is bluffing me because he figures im playing so tight that I'll fold anything but AK, KQ and AA?
    • DrDunne
      DrDunne
      Bronze
      Joined: 29.12.2010 Posts: 3,338
      hmm i don't play live ever, but i reckon it sounds like he flopped big and raised hoping you have AK. he probably isn't thinking about board texture otherwise he probably wouldnt raise a set here. ofc it could also be a bluff but at the end of the day you are multiway so he should be stronger, and you made a cbet with your BDFD+BDSD + overcard and thats all you can do. if he bluffed you then nh to him. a set would probably extract more value on this flop texture by just calling and delaying the action for a later street - purely because nobody will have much on this flop.

      hard to say if you should play back. imo just wait til you see a showdown when he raises you (or someone else) on such a dry flop again.