25NL - The Unexpected Isolation Shove

BoilerAceBoilerAce Red Chipper Posts: 458 ✭✭✭
edited January 2017 in Online Poker Hands
Both players have been reasonably tight from the short history I have with them. Player 3 is a short stack who seemed to be waiting for a moment to shove/double up.

GAME #3415022966: Texas Hold'em NL $0.10/$0.25 2017-01-22 07:48:28/GMT
Table Geoffrion
Seat 1: P1_738427AP ($31.94 in chips)
Seat 2: P2_432936KX ($12.71 in chips)
Seat 3: P3_435486YF ($7.63 in chips) DEALER
Seat 4: P4_784126VH ($17.43 in chips)
Seat 5: P5_712169TM ($26.89 in chips)
Seat 6: P6_299741KA ($11.61 in chips)
Seat 8: Hero ($24.75 in chips)
Seat 9: P9_323323BB ($29.08 in chips)
P4_784126VH: Post SB $0.10
P5_712169TM: Post BB $0.25
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to Hero :Ks:Ah
P6_299741KA: Raise (NF) $0.50
Hero: Call $0.50
P9_323323BB: Call $0.50
P1_738427AP: Call $0.50
P2_432936KX: Fold
P3_435486YF: Call $0.50
P4_784126VH: Fold
P5_712169TM: Fold
*** FLOP *** :2c:9d:Ad
P6_299741KA: Bet $1.00
Hero: Call $1.00
P9_323323BB: Call $1.00
P1_738427AP: Call $1.00
P3_435486YF: Allin $7.13
P6_299741KA: Fold
Hero: Call $6.13
P9_323323BB: Fold
P1_738427AP: Allin $30.44

Hero: Went into the Tank and unfortunately was timed out before I made a decision. The computer folded me. I was happy to call the first all in but now do I call the post call shove? I'm curious to what you guys think here after the 2nd person shoves and if you would have played it different.

Hero: Fold

Comments

  • BoilerAceBoilerAce Red Chipper Posts: 458 ✭✭✭
    Can someone help on this hand?
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,659 ✭✭✭✭
    edited January 2017
    Why do you call preflop ? What's the reasoning behind it ?
  • YoshYosh Red Chipper Posts: 580 ✭✭✭
    edited January 2017
    Long version, absent reads, the strongest data you have is that the MP player (P1) didn't raise the flop against a strong continuation bet from UTG (P6) and two callers on a board with a flush draw. More often than not, strong hands want to raise here. Your hand is entirely underrepresented since you flatted preflop and on the flop. This means that hands like AQ, AJ, Ad5d etc. may feel that they have the best hand now that UTG has folded. They have some incentive to now shove for flush protection and to get heads up against BTN (P3).

    Short version, I would reluctantly call. Behind 99, 22 this is the best hand you have and it's disguised.
  • BoilerAceBoilerAce Red Chipper Posts: 458 ✭✭✭
    edited January 2017
    Because I don't
    Why do you call preflop ? What's the reasoning behind it ?
    That's an interesting place to start. Why didn't I 3 bet? Because I mix things up. Sometimes I 3Bet, sometimes I call behind. I might have 3Bet several spots before and I was purposely disguising the strength of my hand in that situation (which worked perfectly here btw). I open a lot with speculative and strong hands...I just decided this time to lay back and call behind. No one knew I had AK here and that's what I wanted.
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,659 ✭✭✭✭
    edited January 2017
    BoilerAce wrote: »
    Because I don't
    Why do you call preflop ? What's the reasoning behind it ?
    That's an interesting place to start. Why didn't I 3 bet? Because I mix things up. Sometimes I 3Bet, sometimes I call behind. I might have 3Bet several spots before and I was purposely disguising the strength of my hand in that situation (which worked perfectly here btw). I open a lot with speculative and strong hands...I just decided this time to lay back and call behind. No one knew I had AK here and that's what I wanted.

    Ok and what happen if someone 3B behind? I think this is a terrible hand to flat here. Disguising the strength of your hand will work far better when you are IP now you're just calling for trouble. You will miss so much flop and you'll be OOP vs. multiple players.

    What happen if you miss and EP Cbet you fold ? Do you think it's a great play ? And what happen on K high flop or A high flop ? You bet when EP x to you ?

    The proof of that is that you posted the hand because you were confused on how to act now. Regardless of what you would do with all the other holding in your Defending range vs. EP open.
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,659 ✭✭✭✭
    Yosh wrote: »
    Short version, I would reluctantly call. Behind 99, 22 this is the best hand you have and it's disguised.

  • BoilerAceBoilerAce Red Chipper Posts: 458 ✭✭✭
    Yosh wrote: »
    Long version, absent reads, the strongest data you have is that the MP player (P1) didn't raise the flop against a strong continuation bet from UTG (P6) and two callers on a board with a flush draw. More often than not, strong hands want to raise here. Your hand is entirely underrepresented since you flatted preflop and on the flop. This means that hands like AQ, AJ, Ad5d etc. may feel that they have the best hand now that UTG has folded. They have some incentive to now shove for flush protection and to get heads up against BTN (P3).

    Short version, I would reluctantly call. Behind 99, 22 this is the best hand you have and it's disguised.
    Yosh...This great. Just reading this typed out has taught me something very important. More on that at the end.
    I set this up exactly the way I wanted. I wanted to under-represent the strength of my hand and induce worse a single Ax to call here. And I got exactly what I wanted when Player 3 goes all in. I was ecstatic because I knew I had him crushed. I had a decision here to go All in or Call behind. I always fear set mines (traps) so I called in this spot thinking that Player 9 was going to get out of the way. Unfortunately he didn't, and he shoved too to isolate. I smelled that he as very confident at the time and thought he might have had a set, so I folded.
    Yosh, I never thought that I could have possibly under represented my hand enough that 2 people could have Ax and both think that I was weak. You're analysis is brilliant. When the 2nd person isolated, I saw set, but didn't think about the fact that they could have AJ, AQ, or something like that. I saw it as a great hand. I set the perfect trap, saw monsters, and caved under pressure.
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,659 ✭✭✭✭
    @Yosh how many times do we expect to be good here when V shove in a protected pot ?
  • BoilerAceBoilerAce Red Chipper Posts: 458 ✭✭✭
    Ok and what happen if someone 3B behind? I think this is a terrible hand to flat here. Disguising the strength of your hand will work far better when you are IP now you're just calling for trouble. You will miss so much flop and you'll be OOP vs. multiple players.

    What happen if you miss and EP Cbet you fold ? Do you think it's a great play ? And what happen on K high flop or A high flop ? You bet when EP x to you ?

    The proof of that is that you posted the hand because you were confused on how to act now. Regardless of what you would do with all the other holding in your Defending range vs. EP open.
    I understand what you are saying here....what if this happened, what if that happened? My first instinct was to say that well, it didn't. If i would have 3betted, I would have probably won a $3 pot. By mixing things up and checking behind, I threw everyone off and could have stacked both of them instead of only winning $3. I don't think it's a problem to mix things up from time to time especially with the way the table was flowing.

    As far as your questions...

    Ok and what happen if someone 3B behind?
    I would call, be out of position but know that I under represented my hand and no one would know the strength. I'd carefully play along here and probably win the hand on a latter street after not backing down to a turn barrel.

    What happen if you miss and EP Cbet you fold ? Do you think it's a great play ?
    I lose $0.50. I'm not losing sleep over this. No, its not a great play but it's not a devastating play either like 3betting, getting called and running into a set.

    And what happen on K high flop or A high flop ? You bet when EP x to you ?
    Again, I call here knowing that I have a strong hand that's been under-represented. I'd carefully play along here and probably win the hand on a latter street after not backing down to a turn barrel.

    I do respect your line of thinking here and it makes me rethink doing this (checking behind) probably as often as I do. But I still think that mixing up my game helps keep my opponents confused and checking behind occasionally after opening several pots gives the impression that I have a weak holding. Unfortunately, I didn't understand how powerful my preflop call was, I set up the perfect trap, and subsequently screwed up the post flop play.

    I'll post the end of the hand later when I have access to my PT4 hand history.


  • moishetreatsmoishetreats Red Chipper Posts: 1,819 ✭✭✭✭
    BoilerAce wrote: »
    If i would have 3betted, I would have probably won a $3 pot. By mixing things up and checking behind, I threw everyone off and could have stacked both of them instead of only winning $3. I don't think it's a problem to mix things up from time to time especially with the way the table was flowing.

    Thanks for the post and the comments, @BoilerAce. I trust you: if this was the right time to mix it up, then go for it! You already noted that it worked well but you caved in the end.

    I do question, though, what seems to be your premise. You wrote that you could either win $3 or stack off two opponents. I think that you're missing something HUGE: by "mixing it up", you let more hands into the pot; this increases the possibility that you get stacked off, as well, since more hands will be seeing a flop.

    This all leads me to the following key question: WHY did you choose this spot to mix up your play?
  • YoshYosh Red Chipper Posts: 580 ✭✭✭
    We're getting in the neighborhood of 3:1. I think we are good at showdown against both players more than 1 in 4 times. It's not a home-run. The call is relunctant.

    The pot is protected only in the sense that villain should not be bluffing, but given the specifics of the hand, I believe we're ahead of his value raising / protecting / isolating range often enough.


  • BoilerAceBoilerAce Red Chipper Posts: 458 ✭✭✭
    Thanks for the post and the comments, @BoilerAce. I trust you: if this was the right time to mix it up, then go for it! You already noted that it worked well but you caved in the end.

    I do question, though, what seems to be your premise. You wrote that you could either win $3 or stack off two opponents. I think that you're missing something HUGE: by "mixing it up", you let more hands into the pot; this increases the possibility that you get stacked off, as well, since more hands will be seeing a flop.

    This all leads me to the following key question: WHY did you choose this spot to mix up your play?

    You do have a great point. And don't think that you and Adam's comments have fallen on deaf ears. I probably need to call behind less that I what I do. Many days and hands have passed since I played this hand so I can only talk in generalities of why I would call behind with AK. Some you might approve of, some you might not. :)
    1. Many times I'm at a table where my raise openings win but only win small pots due to a CBet fold, etc...or I win the blinds, etc. In my mind, the other players start to question whether or not I have a big hand every time or not. If I haven't been caught recently folding to another's 3Bet, sometimes, I check behind with a strong hand to induce action. This (in my mind) tells this other players...this guy has been raising all of this time...I'll bet he has a speculative hand. And then I've fooled them once again if the flop hits right. I'm sure that's what I was doing in this situation.
    2. Other times, I use it as pot control. If I know that there's a guy that is 4 betting and bullying the table, there's no reason for me to 3 bet. I'll let the bully 3 bet as normal, I'll call behind and gig him silently in his own aggression. The last thing I want is to be inflating the pot and playing for stacks without a hand that will hold up at showdown.
    3. And a final reason (and I know that you guys won't approve). Sometimes I'm just flat running bad. My KK will get cracked with AA, my 2 pair will run into sets, etc ,etc. So I back off a bit and lower my aggression and play more small ball until I can get back on my feet again. I do this because taking bad beat over and over again is bad for my play and my psyche and playing small and less aggressive helps me refocus. There's just times that my aggression will lead me into bad situations and I have to change things up to survive when I get pinned as such.

  • moishetreatsmoishetreats Red Chipper Posts: 1,819 ✭✭✭✭
    BoilerAce wrote: »
    Thanks for the post and the comments, @BoilerAce. I trust you: if this was the right time to mix it up, then go for it! You already noted that it worked well but you caved in the end.

    I do question, though, what seems to be your premise. You wrote that you could either win $3 or stack off two opponents. I think that you're missing something HUGE: by "mixing it up", you let more hands into the pot; this increases the possibility that you get stacked off, as well, since more hands will be seeing a flop.

    This all leads me to the following key question: WHY did you choose this spot to mix up your play?

    You do have a great point. And don't think that you and Adam's comments have fallen on deaf ears. I probably need to call behind less that I what I do. Many days and hands have passed since I played this hand so I can only talk in generalities of why I would call behind with AK. Some you might approve of, some you might not. :)
    1. Many times I'm at a table where my raise openings win but only win small pots due to a CBet fold, etc...or I win the blinds, etc. In my mind, the other players start to question whether or not I have a big hand every time or not. If I haven't been caught recently folding to another's 3Bet, sometimes, I check behind with a strong hand to induce action. This (in my mind) tells this other players...this guy has been raising all of this time...I'll bet he has a speculative hand. And then I've fooled them once again if the flop hits right. I'm sure that's what I was doing in this situation.
    2. Other times, I use it as pot control. If I know that there's a guy that is 4 betting and bullying the table, there's no reason for me to 3 bet. I'll let the bully 3 bet as normal, I'll call behind and gig him silently in his own aggression. The last thing I want is to be inflating the pot and playing for stacks without a hand that will hold up at showdown.
    3. And a final reason (and I know that you guys won't approve). Sometimes I'm just flat running bad. My KK will get cracked with AA, my 2 pair will run into sets, etc ,etc. So I back off a bit and lower my aggression and play more small ball until I can get back on my feet again. I do this because taking bad beat over and over again is bad for my play and my psyche and playing small and less aggressive helps me refocus. There's just times that my aggression will lead me into bad situations and I have to change things up to survive when I get pinned as such.

    Thanks for your explanations and thoughts. Just a preface: I share everything below to give the best advice that I can from my learning and experience. But, it doesn't mean that I know all, some, or even any of the answers. That being said, I take a very different stance on all three of your points.

    1) I see this as a blown opportunity. You've been raising a lot and getting folds a lot. You're right that you'll be doubted. Because of that, you'll start to get called down light. Then, you have a big pot -- when you have a top-end hand. That's the dream, isn't it? Yes, you'll get sucked out on (we'll come back to that in #3). But, one of my most profitable scenarios is when people doubt that I have a hand when I bet, I wake up with a monster, and I get lots of action. Those big wins are one of the staples of my profitability. Were I to slow-play them to induce action, then, when I win, I win much smaller pots.

    2) This one is the most confusing to me... V is bullying the table and 4-betting all the time. You have a monster. The FIRST thing that you want is playing heads-up against him for stacks with your monster hands -- not the last!! If this is the case, then bet your AK, let him 3-bet you, 4-bet him, let him shove, and call. This is one of the clearer +EV plays around.

    3) And the kick-in-the-crotch comes :). Let's play this out. You've had AA cracked a lot recently. So, when you get a monster, you slow-play it figuring that, this way, you won't lose your stack. Let this sink in a while... This is entirely a mindset (read: fear) and bankroll issue. And making poor plays with premium hands will only lengthen your downswing. Look, we've all been there (my personal favorite: once, out of 39 times in a row when I had pocket pairs -- never a good sign if you're counting -- I only hit a set once -- versus an opponent who stacked me off with a flopped straight). Trust me, though: play your big hands big. Variance will end, and you'll win a huge hand. And you'll feel great again -- you know, the monkey off the back thing.

    Finally, it seems to me like you are over-thinking things -- trying to pull out the slick genius move when the smart play is simply the straight-forward play. Straight-forward isn't bad. In fact, it's winning poker: your straight-forward play should be better than you opponents', and you win money. It's only the rare time that requires out-of-the-box thinking, but you seem to be applying the out-of-the-box play thinking to the ordinary situation. That, I think, is not winning poker.

    Tone never comes through well in print, and please know that I'm trying to be kind and helpful. Hopefully, I was at least one of the two :).
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,659 ✭✭✭✭
    The thing is that the only explanation you come up with to justify the call pre is "I like to mixing it up", but do you really need to ? Does the dynamics and players at the table right now dictate that play ? If you told me "that guy on my left 3B a ton specially when I'm in the hand" than ok I could see a point in calling strongest portion of you're range but even then I think that AKo wouldn't be the greatest hand to do so.
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,659 ✭✭✭✭
    edited January 2017
    Also I would add that you put yourself in a spot where: you don't have positional advantage, you don't have initiative and basically you force yourself to either bluff or bluff catch with AKo in a bad spot. What do you think will happen when A high or K high or AK high board will come up and you will give or receive action. The thing is given you're call pre than you're sudden wake up if the players are semi decent they will catch on this, they will put you on strong hit, probably perceived as stronger that TPTK with AK. So won't necessarily win a bigger pot as you stated. Also if you have that aggressive image than it's perfect to 3B EP there, it renforce the image and players may decide to playback at you than you'll have a decent hand to receive and give. That's my point.

    Edit: If I had a AK version to take to do this I'd much prefer a suited version, where I could x/c NFD on flop and Turn.
  • BoilerAceBoilerAce Red Chipper Posts: 458 ✭✭✭
    Yosh wrote: »
    We're getting in the neighborhood of 3:1. I think we are good at showdown against both players more than 1 in 4 times. It's not a home-run. The call is relunctant.

    The pot is protected only in the sense that villain should not be bluffing, but given the specifics of the hand, I believe we're ahead of his value raising / protecting / isolating range often enough.

    Yosh...perfect analysis.

    Dealt to Hero :Ks:AH:
    *** FLOP *** :2c:9d:Ad
    Hero: Fold
    *** TURN *** :Ac
    *** RIVER *** :Kh
    *** SUMMARY ***
    Total pot $49.24 Rake $1.31
    P1_738427AP: Shows :As:Qc One Pair, Aces
    P3_435486YF: Shows :8d:Qd One Pair, Eights
    P1_738427AP: wins $49.24

    I'll get back to the other comments later...

  • BoilerAceBoilerAce Red Chipper Posts: 458 ✭✭✭
    moishetreats /Adam,

    Your criticism is very constructive, thought provoking, and much appreciated. I'm so glad that I posted this hand. I expected some very simple responses of what I should do when faced with the 2nd all-in (which I did get) but I had no idea how much additional advice I would get about my play and thought process.

    It seems like playing direct and the same is more profitable than trying to be tricky, especially at this level. Noted. I'll start incorporating this into my game and see how it goes. I keep working at being more aggressive but it's a been a process for me to un-nit myself. AK flopping TPTK is great but I don't consider it all a monster. I've been ripped with 2 pair or a set so many times that your version of a monster and mine seem to be completely different. Most of my losses have come from where I barrel into someone with a higher pocket pair or a set and I've made great strides to be able to dump my hand when faced with serious aggression. I rarely 4 bet...only with premiums. I would never 4 bet with AK. I find it to over inflate the pot and put myself out on an island waiving a big flag of the strength of my hand. Reading about it is great...but when I 4Bet AK and get 5bet all in only to be up against AAs...well, that fun that could have been avoided by being more careful.

    You guys obviously play a more advanced version of poker where you barrel ahead in positions where I don't mind folding and losing 1-3BB. You have more tools in your tool belt that I don't have...yet. I think it's easier for you to take more aggressive lines and be able to make them profitable. I'm learning but it will take time. The fact that you keep playing the same way during a huge downswing is foreign to me. I love the thinking that variance will even out and I will start being profitable again. That thinking lost me all of my profit and more about a week ago in one session. Surely it can't happen again...yes, it did, again, and again. I went back to being careful and have made my money back.

    I (as you have pointed out) still play poker with fear. I don't known when it's okay to be aggressive and when its not okay. I've read and studied so much....but at this point, it's almost like I need to shadow someone sometime and see how poker is really supposed to be played instead of the way that I play it. Or have someone watch me play and ask me questions at every step of why I'm doing what to correct me then and there (similar to Doug Hull's video of the unstudied player).

    For now I will keep from checking behind unless occasionally when I have position and see how things go. I will keep on the accelerator and being aggressive and report back. This thread has been very helpful.
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,659 ✭✭✭✭
    edited January 2017
    BoilerAce wrote: »
    I would never 4 bet with AK.

    Keep in mind that this statement rely on Table dynamics, Your image, Opponent(s) type and Opponent(s) Frequencies. In short you should never say this or think this way about AK or any other hands for that matter. There will be spots where 4bet/4bet get in with AK will simply be the play. Where other spots won't be. There is not really "a specific way" to play a hand, otherwise you are neglecting a lot of infos coming from players at your table(s) and you're overall game certainly suffer from it. Dont enclose yourself voluntarily in a box.
  • Adam WheelerAdam Wheeler Red Chipper Posts: 2,659 ✭✭✭✭
    edited January 2017
    About fear. It's a very important poker topic. I think it is not enough stated. I try to learn the most i can about it since i got fear too in my game. I think it's normal since we are still learning a lot and it's common for human to have fear vs. the unknown.The thing we need to avoid is to categorize those "fear spot" with the "monster under the bed" label. The best way we can overcome this is learning why we fear certain spots and learn how to approach them. Once we will know almost perfectly what should be the "correct" play than the fear will become something else. and thus we will become something else as a poker player.
  • moishetreatsmoishetreats Red Chipper Posts: 1,819 ✭✭✭✭
    BoilerAce wrote: »
    AK flopping TPTK is great but I don't consider it all a monster. I've been ripped with 2 pair or a set so many times that your version of a monster and mine seem to be completely different. Most of my losses have come from where I barrel into someone with a higher pocket pair or a set and I've made great strides to be able to dump my hand when faced with serious aggression.

    Hence the recommendation to play AK aggressively pre-flop: AK plays MUCH better vs. one opponent than vs. many opponents for the reason that you noted.



    BoilerAce wrote: »
    The fact that you keep playing the same way during a huge downswing is foreign to me. I love the thinking that variance will even out and I will start being profitable again. That thinking lost me all of my profit and more about a week ago in one session. Surely it can't happen again...yes, it did, again, and again. I went back to being careful and have made my money back.

    Yes... and... When I have downswing, the first and only pertinent question is: What is the cause of this downswing -- variance or a leak in my play? If I have self-assessed and/or gotten some advice (RCF rocks!!) and I feel that it is variance, then I will keep my play consistent and know that it will even out (actually, turn profitable). More often than not, though, I find a leak in my game. Sometimes it's big, and sometimes it's small. But, the effect of discovering that leak is twofold, and the second benefit might be greater than the first. (1) I plug my leak. (2) I feel much more confident about myself and my game. That second can't be overstated.

    BoilerAce wrote: »
    For now I will keep from checking behind unless occasionally when I have position and see how things go. I will keep on the accelerator and being aggressive and report back. This thread has been very helpful.

    Study is great; don't stop! But, the best way to learn is by trying, failing, and repeating -- up until you start to realize why you are failing and, ultimately, how to succeed. If you know that checking behind is bad but you're not yet sure what is good, stop checking behind! Study but use trial-and-error at the table, too. Yes, it will potentially be a bit costly while you learn, but how else are you going to learn?

    @Adam Wheeler addresses the fear part well above.

    Keep going, @BoilerAce! I'm pretty sure that pretty soon I'm not going to want to see you at any table that I'm at! :)

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