Do you just accept that you keep losing to AA?

loki75loki75 Red Chipper Posts: 18 ✭✭
I've really been getting f*d by pocket Aces. When I search posts or Google, however, all I can find is people complaining they hate them and always get drawn out on.

Today, this happened and I changed up my strategy to fold instead of putting my stack at risk again.

Playing .50/$1 online, fairly tight experimenting with a small range (AA, KK, QQ, AKo, AQo, A2s-A5s, ATs-AKs, 22-JJ set mining against single raises or cheap 3bets, 67s+ ).

Hero in UTG-1 with Qd Qc - bet $4
Table folds to BB who calls with ??

$7.83 in pot
Flop - 2c 8c 7s

Villian - check
Hero - bet $3.92 (figured I had him and didn't want to scare him off)
Villian - check-raises $11.76
Hero - call

pot $29.75
Turn - 4h

Villian - bets $20.83
Hero - fold

What I know about the villian - he hasn't exactly slowplayed, but has extracted maximum value by betting moderate amounts holding AA on me before, until forcing my good-enough-for-the-board-high-pair, but-can't-beat-AA-he's-been-holding at showdown. Maybe twice.

I figured QQ wasn't good enough to beat AA, or possibly KK. And since I'm tired of losing to AA literally day after day, I'm thinking an overcard pair (like in this situation isn't good enough anymore).

There is plenty to dissect here. Would BB call $4 with 56 suited? Wouldn't he 3bet me with KK or AA? Would he call Ax clubs preflop (probably)? Why didn't I reraise his check-raise on the flop (although I was trying to get more money out of him, and was hoping he would take the aggressive stance, which he did)?

He claimed afterwards he was on a flush draw. Not sure if I can believe that, but it would explain an Ax club in his pocket.

Either way, he bet me out of it. Even if I went all-in, I still could have lost to a flush draw, so I'm not absolutely killing myself over what could be a missed opportunity.

But here's the problem...do I just accept AA is going to beat me when I play my ranges? It seems like it's happening enough that I'm starting to become paranoid about it. I can win a bunch of mid-level pots, then get stacked by AA...handing my money right over. I would have taken a shot if I thought he could be holding KK or bluffing, but throw AA into the equation and I'm not sure how to handle this situation.

I'm thinking give Villians credit for AA, and call or bet with minimum of 2 pair after turn or when I'm the aggressor? It's starting to affect my 70% model.

tl;dr - how do you handle the possibility of playing against AA...particularly if they aren't repping it hard

I'm sure this post is exposing me as someone with a lot to learn. Spoiler - I'd check that box, and that's why I'm here.



Comments

  • Jordan PowerJordan Power Red Chipper Posts: 422 ✭✭✭
    So without focusing on this particular hand, one of my first questions when someone flats a raise preflop is what is the best pocket pair they have left in their range? For the overwhelming majority of players, they are no longer going to have QQ, KK or AA left in their range, so a lot of the time, you're going to be ahead here going to the flop.

    So I'm going to eliminate these hands from V's range. I'm never going to think about them again in the hand. The preflop action does not support V having these hands and thus I am not going to worry about them postflop.

    In one of the resources on RCP, you'll see that ranges should either to stay the same or narrow street to street. Once you remove a combo from V's range, it does not come back later just because it could beat you.

    Granted, that does not mean V does not have that combo. We are going to range people incorrectly and we are going to make mistakes. We're just going to file away the new information to hopefully make a better estimate of V's range in the future.
  • loki75loki75 Red Chipper Posts: 18 ✭✭
    Thank you for answering that way, because what you wrote is at the heart of my question and will do the most to help this weakness I feel I have. I can extract from that if they aren't just flatting, I can then possibly give them credit.

    Otherwise proceed as you said. If they decide to slowplay, it is likely they will achieve their desired result and I will be putting a lot of my money in just like they want.

    So if a regular knows me pretty well, they should just flat against me and they will be able to extract maximum value out of me. But the way the game is played, it wouldn't be wise of them in general to not bet AA for value. Is that pretty much right?
  • loki75loki75 Red Chipper Posts: 18 ✭✭
    And to follow up, one of my mistakes was concentrating too much on my range and not enough on his...unconsciously taking AA out of their range, only to reassess things once we got to the turn, and putting AA back in their range.
  • Jordan PowerJordan Power Red Chipper Posts: 422 ✭✭✭
    loki75 wrote: »

    So if a regular knows me pretty well, they should just flat against me and they will be able to extract maximum value out of me. But the way the game is played, it wouldn't be wise of them in general to not bet AA for value. Is that pretty much right?

    Right, you're going to see 3-bets with AA because obviously its the best starting hand in poker and we want to get more money in the pot. But also, you're going to see reraises to give people worse odds of continuing. AA is a great hand but play it against 4 other people and you'll see that your raw equity is going to diminish relative to how many people are in the pot.

    People do trap with aces, it certainly happens. But I think you'll make better decisions removing the possibility of AA from V when he flats a 2bet until you find evidence that a certain player is trapping with AA against you. Just my two cents :) Best of luck!
  • JoeOffsuitJoeOffsuit Red Chipper Posts: 394 ✭✭✭
    edited June 4
    loki75, Welcome to Red Chip Forums!

    We have an overpair on the flop, and one of the first data points we should be looking for to plan the rest of the hand is the SPR. So please include effective stack sizes, or how many chips are effectively behind you or villain at some point in the hand.
  • loki75loki75 Red Chipper Posts: 18 ✭✭
    JoeOffsuit wrote: »
    loki75, Welcome to Red Chip Forums!

    We have an overpair on the flop, and one of the first data points we should be looking for to plan the rest of the hand is the SPR. So please include effective stack sizes, or how many chips are effectively behind you or villain at some point in the hand.

    Duh, that's what I was talking about that I'm still learning.

    I had $131.38 preflop
    Villain had $104.50 preflop.

    After flop
    Hero $127.38
    Villain $100.50

    After turn card
    Hero $115.62
    Villian $88.74 (betting $20.83 to bring him to $67.91)

    I fold leaving me with $115.62
    He pulls in pot of $29.75

    ...just in case anyone wants more specifics on that particular hand
  • RyanH1995RyanH1995 Red Chipper Posts: 26 ✭✭
    Like @Jordan Power said I think you can rule out AA,KK and QQ from villain's range unless you have seen him trap with those hands before. Your raise size also seems pretty large for online (4x) so I think villain would be even more likely to 3bet with those premium hands. I think the value hands he check raises the flop with are sets and 87. I think a good start would be to go back and assign villain a pre flop calling range from the BB that doesn't include the big pocket pairs and narrow it down from there.
  • JoeOffsuitJoeOffsuit Red Chipper Posts: 394 ✭✭✭
    edited June 4
    No biggee, except maybe a few people here, the rest of us are all still learning.

    You have the villain covered, so pre-flop effective stack size is 104.50, as your additional money is not in play.

    Pre-flop I think your raise sizing is fine.

    On the flop, the SPR is 100.50 / 7.83 = 12.8, which is pretty deep. For a completely unknown opponent, I always used an SPR of about 4 on the flop as the threshold between if or if not my plan should be to get it all in or not with a top pair / overpair type hand. So given no history with this opponent, with an SPR greater than 12 I am not that excited about making a plan to get it all in,

    So when we c-bet, we have to have a plan what we are going to do when we are raised. I would usually c-bet this spot against an unknown, but this deep I am also OK with delaying the c-bet until the turn to see if he checks it a 2nd time.

    We don't like being check-raised on the flop as we have no idea if we are ahead or behind, so I think we have to call here.

    Then his lead on the turn is threatening to play for doubling up on us. Now we need to decide how many combinations of hands that beat us he might have versus how many combinations of draws and bluffs he might have. Sure AA, KK, 82o and 72o are unlikely, but 22, 77, 88, 78, A8, 99, Tc9c, AcXc all seem possible. You can't do this at the table, but do it at home afterwards and you will be more prepared for a similar situation in the future.

    If you always fold in this spot, you will be exploitable and players will pick up on it and pick on you.. I am sure there will be other opinions in this forum, but I think you played fine even if villain was on a draw this time.
  • AlpineCurtAlpineCurt Red Chipper Posts: 55 ✭✭
    It's frustrating when you feel like you're running into aces again and again. Try to keep objectivity in the forefront of your mind. Aces are rare. It's always a small part of everyone's ranges (unless of course you get 3Bet by a classic OMC).

    We need stack depths for the hand you posted. This is a critical piece of the puzzle we're missing.

    BB flatting aces vs your EP open is unusual, but not unheard of. Think about this from BB's perspective. If they're a competent player, they've noticed that you're playing very tight, and you just raised from EP; you have a very strong range. BB is not incentivized to 3Bet you light here. 3Betting you should set off alarm bells. Since action has folded to him, he can flat to get you heads up with a super under repped monster and let you blast off with your strong range. This board favors him too.
  • loki75loki75 Red Chipper Posts: 18 ✭✭
    edited June 4
    AlpineCurt wrote: »
    BB flatting aces vs your EP open is unusual, but not unheard of. Think about this from BB's perspective. If they're a competent player, they've noticed that you're playing very tight, and you just raised from EP; you have a very strong range. BB is not incentivized to 3Bet you light here. 3Betting you should set off alarm bells. Since action has folded to him, he can flat to get you heads up with a super under repped monster and let you blast off with your strong range. This board favors him too.

    You are correct, I did polarize myself a ton by waiting for the hands in what I think is a tight range (still need to figure out a strategy for this). I'm sure he picked up on this, or maybe it was me being paranoid and thinking he couldn't believe anything else if I waited that long to go in and put a $4 bet down to open everyone. I think that was part of the reason AA concerned me, I thought he had to know I had a strong hand and my rationale was he had to have something stronger.

    If he was really smart, which would worry me, he would run with your strategy and absolutely kill me. In the right situation, with the right read, I'd like to try that.

    Also, if I'm not mistaken, I lost to this same player twice in a row 2 days ago to AA one hand after the other. It may not have been him, but it definitely happened.
  • loki75loki75 Red Chipper Posts: 18 ✭✭
    edited June 4
    JoeOffsuit wrote: »
    If you always fold in this spot, you will be exploitable and players will pick up on it and pick on you.. I am sure there will be other opinions in this forum, but I think you played fine even if villain was on a draw this time.

    Thanks for putting some thought into that. For the past few weeks I haven't been folding hardly at all if it fit my range, so normally I would have continued. But the whole AA thing, which I know isn't rational, really crept up on me. I think I was also a little hesitant because I was about to leave the table when I got this hand, taking $45 up to $131 over the course of an hour, and wanted to leave with most of it. So I can also factor in I was playing a little scared on top of this.
  • loki75loki75 Red Chipper Posts: 18 ✭✭
    RyanH1995 wrote: »
    Like @Jordan Power said I think you can rule out AA,KK and QQ from villain's range unless you have seen him trap with those hands before. Your raise size also seems pretty large for online (4x) so I think villain would be even more likely to 3bet with those premium hands. I think the value hands he check raises the flop with are sets and 87. I think a good start would be to go back and assign villain a pre flop calling range from the BB that doesn't include the big pocket pairs and narrow it down from there.

    I did feel like he was playing a little loose. So since you mentioned it, I could see him with 88, 77, 22 preflop deciding to call for $3. But, to be honest, that hadn't entered my mind since I was so focused on QQ and had pairs and flushes on my brain. I definitely need more off-table work before it sinks in. Thanks for this comment.

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