# -EV calls followup post

• Gold
Joined: 24.08.2011
I came across wiarygodny's last month post which I thought was awfully interesting and since this is a topic I have also encountered recently, I decided to create a follow up post to add my 2 cents and allow people to keep developing the subject.

Surprisingly, this topic came up in one of the SnG coachings 2 weeks ago in a very interesting situation:

Blinds 25/50

BU = 75 chips
SB = 600 chips
BB = 600 chips (Hero)

So BU folds, and SB shoves into us. Assuming SB and BB are regs and playing nash, the equilibrium for this situation gives the following calling range:

Then the coach said, that he would call wider than nash in this situation, and for instance make a -ev call with 88. This came as a bit of a shock, at least for me and some other good regs present in the coaching. Since the BU has only 1.5BB left and is getting blinded out in the next hand, why in hell would we call wider than nash in this spot?

However I asked the coach if the reason was due to Future Game, and the fact that in we win we would almost always get 1st place, but his answer was no, that those were not the reasons, at least the main ones. However due to the limited time of the coachings and the other handful of questions that were going on, the topic was left up in the air.

Now, I am inclined to believe the coach statements, since he has way more experience than we do, however we were not able to find a proper justification for this call. On top of that, if we run a FGS on the same situation, 88 is still not even close to a call (-0.77).

So to put it simple, the questions are:

- In this situation, Call or Fold, and your reasons (all of them )

- Does really a FGS make sense in this situation? I think in general this algorithms are presented to us in a 'black box' format and we just use it as a magic trick without knowing the mathematical limitations, i.e. in this case 3 of the variables are the 3 stack sizes, and one is of a lesser order of magnitude than the other 2. In mathematics this discrepancy can sometimes lead to spurious/meaningless results, since the algorithm is not as efficient as it is intended to be in this extreme cases. I am not saying this is the case, is just to give an example to question the reliability of this simulations. Maybe someone has some more in depth info on the FGS.

I think I am forgetting something, but for now I think it's enough to start the discussion. Thanks guys!
• 7 replies
• Bronze
Joined: 12.10.2010
Hi, julito23!

Thanks for posting the hand and yes-very interesting topic. I am not gonna lie, I am not a FGS or math wiz, that's why I use all the possible software to help me solve these situations. A lot of it is just logic.

I've used holdem resources and the FGS tool to check from 1 to 5 future hands and 88 is always a very bad call. To me it makes no sense to go looser than 99 here. For one thing, we can't go looser for future meta benefits such as villain exploiting this spot tighter, just because whether we call 88+ or 99+, he always has a profitable any 2 cards push here. Shortie is committed next hand, there is a huge difference is stack sizes and the risk is not worth it imo.

I am very open to hear new opinions of course as I might be missing something, hopefully the coach himself would also state his point here.
• Bronze
Joined: 17.08.2006
Hi Julien,

I can't see a call with 88 here, I really think it is bad.
Maybe the coach had in mind that by calling looser he might force an other regular into pushing tighter if similar situations happen in other SNGs, but if that is in his mind 88 is not a hand to call with, you should do it with a very crappy hand (ATo, JTs), so the other guy is afraid of pushing into you and reduces his range.
If you call him with 88 or AK (even so it is horrible) he just thinks you don't know your ranges that well and he would still have +EV any twos if you have these few hands in your range, here. So you will not force him to change his ranges with these calls.

And all this only helps you if he really adjusts by pushing way tighter into you and only if you know that, and you don't call him with loose hands against his now tight range.

But that is just my opinion. So maybe I am not guessing correctly, what the coach intended there.
• Gold
Joined: 24.08.2011
Hey guys thank you very much for the replies. I think you both made very good points; it is possible that by calling wider in some spots, a thinking reg might adjust and stop shoving any 2 in similar spots, however I agree that this is not even close to be a good spot for that.

So going back to the hand, I was thinking that maybe the stack sizes are not exactly correct. What I remember perfectly is the positions, that BU had 1.5 BB left and that SB shove into us, and out chips were between a big and a midstack. So if we take a bit this situation again to this extreme we get:

Blinds 25/50

BU = 75 chips
SB = 700 chips
BB = 300 chips (Hero)

Like I said, this is the extreme case; there is no way that the stack difference BB-SB was higher than this.

Now 88 becomes much more of a close call, but by default I would still fold.

So now my questions for you guys are:

- Does this new stack distribution change anything about your decision for you now?

- Could you think of a similar bubble situation where you would call outside nash against a reg being a midstack?

I will ask Collin to take a look at the post tomorrow during the coaching and hope that he can illuminate us.

Thank you again, looking forward to hear more from you.
• Basic
Joined: 20.05.2013
IMO, I would be more inclined to call in the first scenario than the second. In the second, doubling up does not 99.99% guarantee the win like in the first scenario.

And this is all assuming that Villain is 100% of the time capable of shoving ATC here. If he folds the trashiest hands , 88 is more -\$EV. I don't get why widening Nash would be better in any of these 2 spots.

PS: Donk analysis above , read with care
• Bronze
Joined: 12.10.2010
Hi again

To shortly answer-no, I don't find a reason to go any wider than nash. In fact, I might even go a bit tighter as some NASH here f.e. will not get into account that BU is on the blinds next hand(unless u used FGS) plus SB might not be on any 2(but I think most villains will be ultra wide).

Anyway, here the difference between the mid stack and short stack is smaller, plus we are not in a great shape with 5bb(after this hand) and that's why 88 is less of a minus EV call. However, as you can see from the results, we can't go out of line. Calling again has no future benefit. I think that even if we call SB with any pair, any Ax, broadway(which is OMG bad), he still has profitable any 2.

As for calling outside of nash on the bubble as a midstack...hmm....It's tricky. Reason for that is that usually as a midstack the risk aversion vs the big stack is huge. And we need to take an enormous minus EV play to maybe make our opponent a bit more reluctant to shove any two. But once again, say we are 10bb, villain is 20bb and shortie is 3bb. Even if we call much wider than what nash-again with any Ax, pair or broadway, he still has profitable any two. So we really gotta go out of line with hands like K4s and there is no guarantee villain will adjust.
• Gold
Joined: 24.08.2011
Well, given that the post generated less discussion than I expected, that leads me to believe that the doubts this spot stirred up on me have a clear answer. It could also be that I picked a bad example for what I wanted to show.

Hence, I will keep folding in this spots like the nit I am.