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StrategyFixed Limit

Equity vs Strategic Advantages [Beta]


In this Article
  • To what extent is it worth exchanging pot equity?
  • How to gain advantage on tle flop?
This article deals with the question of to what extent it is worth exchanging pot equity pre-flop to gain a strategic advantage on the flop.

The classic example for such a situation can be found in HPFAP, p. 40.


Let's suppose you have AKo in the BB and one or two aggressive players have called from an early position. Your best play is usually (but not always) to just call and (perhaps) try for a check-raise later

The play advised by Sklansky is a big mistake. A PokerStove equity analysis delivers the following:


Source: PokerStove
equity (%) win (%) / tie (%)

Hand 1: 38.7700 % [ 00.38 00.01 ] { AKo }
Hand 2: 30.6090 % [ 00.30 00.01 ] { TT-55, ATs-A6s, KJs-K9s, QJs-QTs, JTs }
Hand 3: 30.6210 % [ 00.30 00.01 ] { TT-55, ATs-A6s, KJs-K9s, QJs-QTs, JTs }

Against our 2 opponents we have an equity edge of 8%. If we raise, 3 extra bets come into the pot, of which 38% belong to us. Hence, a raise here will raise our EV by .14 SB's, from an equity point of view. This raise alone is already worth as much as a good hand like 99, on average!

The standard argument against this calculation is that you can make back the EV you lose pre-flop in the post-flop game, since you can protect better with a smaller pot size and bring your opposition into positions where they either fold or make bad calls. A pre-flop raise- it is argued - allows our opposition to automatically make correct calls post-flop since the pot is simply too big.

This implies, however, that a good call by the opponent must be bad for us. While this is believed by 70% of all "good" players, it is not quite true.


That's not the entire article...

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