QQ in tough spot... $1/2 NLHE

TheGrindersCookbookTheGrindersCookbook Merrimack, NHRed Chipper Posts: 81 ✭✭
Hey all -

Gonna try to explain this hand the best I can. Here we go..

For this hand, the table has been playing relatively tight, nothing too crazy and just an overall solid game. There are a couple regs here that I have a read on but not in this hand. A lady who I recognize as a reg comes to the table, but I have never played with her before. We are chatting and she mentions she has been playing at other places too for years in the are. Point is, I am not dealing with a fish here. Ok, lets get to the hand.

My stack: $280
Villian stack: $300, basically the same

I am in middle position, look down at :Qd:Qh . I open raise to $8.

Folds to her in the cut off who makes it $20 to go. SB, BB, folds to me. I complete.

Heads up to a flop: :3s:4d:6h

I check it, she leads out with $35

I definitely think in retrospect I showed my hesitation to call this. But i did call.

Turn: :7c

I check, she goes $100 into a pot that is now close to $100.

What do you do? You have no read on her. She re-raised you preflop. Bet the flop (maybe a C bet with something like AQ, AK, or JJ. My read was JJ, but just thought that the re-raise preflop said KK or AA. Thoughts?

Edit: I folded. She won't tell me what she had...
«13

Comments

  • jfarrow13jfarrow13 Red Chipper Posts: 1,254 ✭✭✭✭
    So few things:
    1. Time playing doesn't mean that people are good at the game. I bet there have been people playing for 15 years who are losing players who just enjoy the game. There is one woman at my local casino who is the only way a $5/10 game breaks out, and all the $2/5 regs are chomping at the bit to try to get on that table. She has endless money supply. It's literally like 9 v 1, soon as she decides she has had enough the $5/10 game breaks. I think she has probably dumps well over 100k every year. That being said, let's jump in.
    2. #1 your pre-flop sizing is a bit small for my liking. At $8 people are getting a good price to enter the pot, and QQ doesn't perform as well multi way as it does say heads up or 3 ways.
    3. If she is a "good" player, she might attack what she thinks is a weak $8 open (dunno what your table was playing like). Let's say that's 99+ AQs, KQs. Then let's narrow it more to 10's+AK. Then even tighter to KK+AK. If you have software like Equilab and flopzilla, you can run some numbers. Next, read this article https://www.upswingpoker.com/minimum-defense-frequency-vs-pot-odds/ . Run some numbers on your own about ranges, equity, and what % of the time you think she is bluffing.
    4. Logically think through the hand. Do the math. Look at the bet sizing. Run these things, and then look at all of them and tell me what the story is. Here are some good questions you should ask yourself. "What % of the time, assuming all the money goes in, do I need to be good here?" "What type of cards does she make this 3-bet with?" "What kind of cards logically follow this type of 'action' or bet sizing?" "What does she think I have? What does it look like I have? What hands would she take this type of action with?"
    5. I know, it's a lot. It's work. But to get better at poker, you need to know some of these #'s so that there's no longer guess work, but instead logical decisions to be made. Sometimes you'll be right. Sometimes you'll be wrong. But be able to justify your answer, and be able to do it with math/other information.

    If you want what I'd do, here it is, but I suggest you work through these questions before looking
    Your bet size looks weak to me. Assuming she isn't a sicko, I'm 3-betting you with a "conservative" steal range of 10's+ AK. I'd go wider, but w.e. On the flop, she SHOULD NOT have sets. You have the correct odds to have set mined, so I would have called with my PP. Check and she bets, close to pot. Is AA that scared of this board?
    KK? They really shouldn't be. In fact, they should be treading somewhat lightly against a proper 3-bet defend range, this is your board not hers. She is not. She is smashing chips in there. She could be bad, sure. But this reeks of "I'm trying to get you to fold." A hand like AA or KK has no reason to smash in chips, unless he puts you exactly on QQ or JJ. If she does, good for her, but then again, you folded, so not good for her. Hands like 99-JJ and AK+ other overs NEED you to fold now, because you ain't folding on the river. Plus, hands like 99-JJ are "afraid of getting draw out on by overs!"
    Again, why so big? What is AA or KK have to be afraid of here? If she folds out 10-QQ here, what a misplay by her. No my friend, I'd size down for value + some pot control in case you are slow playing a set, and to get value from worse hands. So there's roughly $214 in the pot, you got about $225 left. This comes down to how you want to play it, and tinker around with the math. If you shove now, you fold out some of her bluffs, but those bluffs may have equity. AK, but that's really only 12% equity, and those cards ain't coming a ton. Then, then about if you call the $100, is she ever gonna bet 88-JJ again? Prob not. Will she bluff off at it with AK on the river? If you call, you got like $125 left. Seems like a bad idea to me. So, you can call now, and shove the river for $125, you will be called by AA and KK and lose. Figure out what % of the time 99 and JJ will have to call you for you to break even. Then think about, do you think you can bet about $70 on the river and get called by 88-JJ? Or, you can shove now, fold out here bluffs, which probably ain't firing the river anyways unless they improve, and look at what % of time you think you can get called by 99-JJ. Once you look at the math and her "story", I'm not folding here. I will definitely get stacked a % of the time here, but I think you find you are good here a pretty high % of the time.
  • persuadeopersuadeo Red Chipper Posts: 4,312 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited April 2018
    Don't turn qq into 88 and then forget you'd done that.
  • RedRed Red Chipper Posts: 2,396 ✭✭✭✭
    We really need more info about her betting pattern to know if big bets are usual for her or if she is betting stronger (to the pot/in absolute) here. Without further info:

    I don't think the fold is bad.
    BUT
    You need to have a reason to fold.

    Exploitative Approach

    IF
    - Your room is on the tight side of the spectrum AND she is a reg in your room, I'd expect she is on the tight side of the spectrum as well.
    - Which means her 3-bet range should be rather strong.
    - Which means I don't expect JJ, TT or lower that often.
    - Which means I don't expect big bluffs with AK.
    - Having QQ blocks QQ and AQ, which is / should be part of Villain 3bet range (esp. QQ)
    THEN
    - Folding is ok


    GTO Approach

    Don't forget that you don't have to call with all of your holdings. It comes about the concept of MDF or Minimal Defence Frequency (see here for more info).

    Here Villain bet 100 into 113. MDF is 100/(100+113) = 47%. You have to call with ~50% of your hand you have on the turn not to be exploited by bluffs.
    (Attention, Villain should have bluff in her range for MDF to be fully relevant)


    Here, I think you've stronger holdings to call with. It really depends on your 3-bet calling range preflop (do you call with small PP, small SC, KK+ ?), but I think QQ could be part of the (top of the) folding range.


    Bottom line

    This is a close decision, especially because we have no info about Villain. We are playing cash game. There will be a lot of better spot. Better save the chips, get more info for next big hand against her, and find ourself better +EV situations for the rest of the session.
  • RedRed Red Chipper Posts: 2,396 ✭✭✭✭
    edited April 2018
    jfarrow13 wrote: »
    3. If she is a "good" player, she might attack what she thinks is a weak $8 open (dunno what your table was playing like).

    I disagree about that. X$ open are not weak per se. X would be a weak open if this player usually opens for Y$ and suddenly goes for a lower X$ open bet. Without variation in open bet sizing, I'd not think it's weak.

    Also in many rooms I played in the casual open bet at 1/2$ is 6-10$. So 8$ doesn't look that weak (not like a 5$ open bet).
  • TheGrindersCookbookTheGrindersCookbook Merrimack, NHRed Chipper Posts: 81 ✭✭
    Thanks, all! I definitely have been thinking about this a lot since I left the table last night. It was basically my last hand.

    I think I let the thought of 'well its $100' or $200 if a shove here and 'is it really worth the risk' get into my head when making the decision which I know is wrong. I think my read of KK or AA is just giving too much credit and @jfarrow13 makes a great point about KK/AA not being afraid of this board so bet sizing should be smaller. That being said I think AK/AJ/JJ/1010 something like that makes the most sense. Had I been up a little, I think this is almost a snap call.

    On the other hand, I think that she knew I was also a reg, so she may have thought that by making a bet size like that was just creating the image that she wanted to buy the pot and had be dominated. I just don't see a pre flop re raise 10x BB with X5 or any low pockets. Just doesn't seem like she's capable of that and then smashing the board.

    That being said, I think in this spot next time its an auto-call/shove.
  • RedRed Red Chipper Posts: 2,396 ✭✭✭✭
    @PBF_Prodigy : I didn't say part of my answer is GTO - for act I didn't use any solver... - , I did say you can use a GTO approach. In my example I used MDF, a GTO tool which isn't that much used for exploitative strategies.
    IMHO
  • TheGrindersCookbookTheGrindersCookbook Merrimack, NHRed Chipper Posts: 81 ✭✭
    @PBF_Prodigy @Red @jfarrow13

    Do you guys think this is a similar enough situation to what is outlined here?

  • ivandurstivandurst Red Chipper Posts: 124 ✭✭

    When villain 3-bets you so small pre-flop, 4-bet QQ to $55-60. In general, when villains are consistently sizing-down their 3- or 4- bet sizes, it's because they want to do it as often as possible with bluffs and merged ranges.

    I read the OP and first couple responses, and was excited to be the first one to say this is a mandatory 4-bet. you stole my thunder PBF_Prodigy :)
  • Fernando OFernando O Red Chipper Posts: 78 ✭✭
    Dr. Malcolm Crowe helped the child who was scared of Dead People by suggesting he listen to what the Dead might have to say rather than continuing down the mobius strip of self-fear.
  • RedRed Red Chipper Posts: 2,396 ✭✭✭✭
    ivandurst wrote: »

    When villain 3-bets you so small pre-flop, 4-bet QQ to $55-60. In general, when villains are consistently sizing-down their 3- or 4- bet sizes, it's because they want to do it as often as possible with bluffs and merged ranges.

    I read the OP and first couple responses, and was excited to be the first one to say this is a mandatory 4-bet. you stole my thunder PBF_Prodigy :)

    I disagree. We had a discussion with @kagey and others, like ~june-july last year. Point is: playing low stakes (1/2 - 2/5) cash games, if you 4bet, you won't have action except by better hands (KK+). If you make all worst hands fold, you are leaving (a ton of) value on the table. It's better to flat - even AA - and play poker postflop.

    Yes, on the paper having a balanced 4bet range is good. But it's unnecessary at this stakes of cash games as a large part of the players aren't good, studied nor balanced. Things are but different in tourney and higher stakes cash games.
  • TheGrindersCookbookTheGrindersCookbook Merrimack, NHRed Chipper Posts: 81 ✭✭
    I disagree. We had a discussion with @kagey and others, like ~june-july last year. Point is: playing low stakes (1/2 - 2/5) cash games, if you 4bet, you won't have action except by better hands (KK+). If you make all worst hands fold, you are leaving (a ton of) value on the table. It's better to flat - even AA - and play poker postflop.

    Yes, on the paper having a balanced 4bet range is good. But it's unnecessary at this stakes of cash games as a large part of the players aren't good, studied nor balanced. Things are but different in tourney and higher stakes cash games.

    100% agree with you @Red .. 1/2 NL there is no concept of a 4 bet ever, at least in my experience. Even a 3 bet signals AA/KK/AKs at 1/2. I think that if Villian here had AA or KK, my 4-bet would result in a shove, at which point I would guarantee myself the read at a semi-minimum loss. Here, though, I call my raiser, ($20) and then call ($35) to see flop and turn for $55. With the approach suggested above with the 4 bet, had villain shoved I would have paid $60 (slightly more) to see 0 cards if she shoved. I think with my approach I got to see some cards with the hopes a Q comes on the flop and I shove.

    Maybe I am completely wrong in my reasoning here, but I guess point is I don't think 3-betting or 4-betting with QQ is a great strategy at 1/2 already facing a pre flop re raise.
  • moishetreatsmoishetreats Red Chipper Posts: 1,819 ✭✭✭✭
    edited April 2018
    Red wrote: »
    Point is: playing low stakes (1/2 - 2/5) cash games, if you 4bet, you won't have action except by better hands (KK+)...

    Yes, on the paper having a balanced 4bet range is good. But it's unnecessary at this stakes of cash games as a large part of the players aren't good, studied nor balanced.

    Jesse Snow wrote: »
    1/2 NL there is no concept of a 4 bet ever, at least in my experience. Even a 3 bet signals AA/KK/AKs at 1/2....

    I don't think 3-betting or 4-betting with QQ is a great strategy at 1/2 already facing a pre flop re raise.

    Let's move away from absolutes. Not every 1/2 or 1/3 game in every casino in every city in every state in every country plays the same.

    And the talent pool at low-level games can also very quite widely depending on casino, as well.
  • jfarrow13jfarrow13 Red Chipper Posts: 1,254 ✭✭✭✭
    Lol for real? The only thing holding me back from being a $5/10 crusher is A. An opponent having a hand to 3-bet me with at $1/3 when I have AA and B. My willingness to 4-bet it. Why didn't I see this earlier. I guess I can retire the user name now, I SHAN'T BE NEEDING IT WHERE IM GOING 10/25 AA 4 BET IN TOW! Look for me at the top friends, with this information I'm now on top of the mountain and I've only started climbing.
    *note* I play recreationally 0-3 days a week. I can count on one hand the number of times someone has 4-bet without AA.
    *note* I am willing to 4-bet without AA.
    *note* 3-bets from people who I considered typical $1/3 player poor are hesitant to 3-bet without QQ+. They don't even like 3-betting AK. In fact, I've value owned myself more than a few times because players will flat 3-bets with AA or KK.
    *note* assumptions about player pool can be a dangerous thing, but none the less they are held true until proven otherwise, after all, without info how do you even range your opponent for the first hand you sit down and they open? I bet you look at their profile, chips, and the stakes your at and make an assumption based on that.
  • TheGameKatTheGameKat Posts: 3,833 -
    If it's my first hand at a table and I have QQ I'm 3-betting 100% of opponents at 100% of stakes from 100% of positions. Are you crazy??

    Again, so many arguments on this forums are between high stakes players telling low stakes players to put more money in the pot with strong hands, and low stakes players are like "No, that's too advanced a concept to work at the small stakes." If 4-betting AA pre-flop is too "balanced" for you, you need to start back from square one.

    Like, your attitude about pre-flop play is so far from good, even for the small stakes, that there's zero point trying to convince you of any more difficult ideas, you're just determined to make less money. Carry on.

    Live poker: everyone brags about how they're a 20bb/100 crusher, yet no one plays $10/20 or knows even ABC pre-flop theory. O_o

    I think the issue was 4-betting QQ pre. In some Vegas $1/2 games that would be suicidal.
    Moderation In Moderation
  • AustinAustin Red Chipper Posts: 5,483 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I just started to move up and was stagnant at 1\2 and 1\3 for a good period of time until joining this site.

    Once I really dove into ranges and figured out how to play better postflop instead of getting into preflop my win rate tripled.

    You will see a lot of my post where CO raises who is nitty and I have a tight image where i flat to keep the player in because he will fold 90% of his range. Other times ill 3 bet 75s and my 3 bet range will be 60-80% bluffs.

    It is very player dependent at the low stakes just like high stakes, but I feel 3 bet calling ranges are tighter in 3 bet pots and wider in higher stakes. This is also due to stack depth where 100bb with 5x opens is not a true 100bb game and most games range from 50-100bb.

    There is obviously value in 3 betting QQ+ but I find flatting preflop if the pot is going 2-3 ways only makes the most money unless I have an aggro dynamic.

    75% at least of the time im 3 betting though.
  • RedRed Red Chipper Posts: 2,396 ✭✭✭✭
    edited April 2018
    If it's my first hand at a table and I have QQ I'm 3-betting 100% of opponents at 100% of stakes from 100% of positions. Are you crazy??

    Again, so many arguments on this forums are between high stakes players telling low stakes players to put more money in the pot with strong hands, and low stakes players are like "No, that's too advanced a concept to work at the small stakes." If 4-betting AA pre-flop is too "balanced" for you, you need to start back from square one.

    Like, your attitude about pre-flop play is so far from good, even for the small stakes, that there's zero point trying to convince you of any more difficult ideas, you're just determined to make less money. Carry on.

    Live poker: everyone brags about how they're a 20bb/100 crusher, yet no one plays $10/20 or knows even ABC pre-flop theory. O_o
    Yeah I 3 bet QQ almost always too - I avoid it against a nitty OMC. But not 4betting - as said by @TheGameKat it would be suicidal : and in my experience around the world, it's almost always so ; with the only exception of wild games.

    We have to adapt to our environment / table. 5/10 doesn't go the same as 1/2. Good for you if it works for you on 5/10, but it's not our case on 1/2
  • YoshYosh Red Chipper Posts: 580 ✭✭✭
    It may be helpful to consider how vulnerable raising ranges are to attack, using assumptions that reduce QQ to a set mining hand.

    Also, if the assumption is that QQ can't be 4b, because 3b ranges are too strong, why is the villain betting near pot on the low turned 4 liner? Is this just an obstinate AA?
  • persuadeopersuadeo Red Chipper Posts: 4,312 ✭✭✭✭✭
    TheGameKat wrote: »

    I think the issue was 4-betting QQ pre. In some Vegas $1/2 games that would be suicidal.

    I think you mean: "Against giant nuts at any stake 4-betting QQ is suicidal."

    This.

    Stake-based thinking is a comfortable, self-deceiving inhibition to thinking clearly about the game.
  • TheGameKatTheGameKat Posts: 3,833 -
    I'm not basing it on stakes, I'm basing it on game texture. Against certain players (in a Vegas $1/2 game) 4b-committing with QQ at 100BB effective would be virtually mandatory, but those players are outliers in such games. The more common player has a static strategy that doesn't differentiate between opponents playing 14/9 and 25/19.
    Moderation In Moderation
  • TheGameKatTheGameKat Posts: 3,833 -
    I agree 100% with your calculation and your conclusions. Now find me a Vegas $1/2 game in which most of the table 3bs AK.
    Moderation In Moderation
  • TheGameKatTheGameKat Posts: 3,833 -
    Actually, I shouldn't assign work to others. Such games can be found often at Planet Hollywood and everywhere during the WSOP.
    Moderation In Moderation

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