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  • Playing the Draw

    Posted by arw on October 31, 2020 at 1:19 pm

    50/100 + 12 ante with 7 players

    UTG : This player min-raises to 200 with 4000 chips to start. He has been very active, loose, and aggressive.

    HJ: This player calls 200 with 1800 chips to start. This player is patient but tends to make mistakes post-flop.

    Button: This player calls 200 with 3200 chips to start. He/She has been very solid. Thus far, I’ve been watching this player closely as they are to my immediate right and I don’t know them.

    SB: The hero is in the small blind with 87hh and 2800 chips to start. I’ve played only a few rounds at this table.

    The pot size is ~1000

    #1 — What should the Hero do pre-flop?

    a) Fold

    b) Call 150 more

    c) Raise


    The flop is 9d6d3c.

    This gives me an open ended straight draw on the flop. I need any 5 or any T.

    #2 — What should the Hero do on the flop?

    a) Check

    b) Bet

    #3 — If our hero plans to check/call, what pot odds are needed to chase the draw?

    a) 2 to 1

    b) 3 to 1

    c) 4 to 1

    d) 5 to 1

    e) 6 to 1

    f) 7 to 1

    g) 8 to 1


    If given the opportunity, I might have check-raised the UTG’s bet of 600 if the other two fold and we are heads-up. He likely had a wide range.

    If UTG bets 600 and the HJ calls, I likely call behind to try and hit it. I think my implied odds are big enough against a loose aggressive player and also a player who is known to bet or call with poor hands post-flop.

    If UTG bets 600 and the Button calls. This player has a stronger range than my other two opponents. His call on the flop might induce me to lean toward calling some times and folding other times. I don’t think this player will call any big bets when a scare card falls. Imagine having QQ on this board and you don’t want to see any (T, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2) hitting the turn.

    As played, I checked the flop. UTG bets 600. HJ raises all-in to 1600. Button raises all-in to 3000. Unfortunately, all 4 players in this hand apparently like their hand. My position in the small blind allows me to get away cheaply by check/folding. As expected the UTG player also folds. The HJ is all-in with K9. The Button has QQ for an over-pair. The button wins the pot.

    I don’t like the way the button played QQ pre-flop. Flatting a min-raise on the button with a large over-pair and multiple players seems like a mistake. Maybe he expected me to squeeze with my stack. Maybe, he wants to wait, see, and hope that the flop doesn’t have any aces or kings.

    The HJ player was doomed from the start. With many players behind, the HJ calls a small bet with a really weak hand K9. This type of hand is likely dominated if other players decide to play. For me, I’m much more willing to open with K9 but I’m rarely calling a raise with K9 unless conditions are optimal.

    Overall, this was a great flop for my hand and a really good spot to win a lot of chips. I didn’t force anything and simply did the Billy Beane strategy of playing simple and letting my opponents make the mistakes. Even though I didn’t win any chips this hand, I’m sure I’ll find another great spot if I keep looking.

    Happy Halloween

    yamel replied 3 years, 5 months ago 2 Members · 2 Replies
  • 2 Replies
  • arw

    October 31, 2020 at 2:44 pm

    My Answers:

    #1 —


    Speculative hands are better to play when you have better position and a bigger stack. I’m out of position against 3 other players and only 28 bb.


    In game, I called because I saw two weak players in the hand and I think 87 suited is one of the best hands in multiway pots. My plan was to go for the check-raise if I hit and try to get it in.

    #2 —


    This option seems best.


    I must be honest, I almost bet $600 into $1000. Betting from the small blind into 3 players shows tremendous strength. It puts the UTG player to a tough decision (fold, call, raise) w/ players behind. In my opinion, it’s common for players to lead with hands like small sets and two pairs. They balance that range by also semi-bluffing with hands like straight draws and flush draws.

    #3 —

    What odds are needed to chase the draw?

    The pot is 1000.

    My opponent will bet X.

    Pot Odds = X / (1000 + X)

    On the flop,

    My outs are the (5c, 5h, 5s, 5d, Tc, Th, Ts, Td) however two of them (Td, 5d) will put a possible flush on the board. It will also allow the possibility of runner runner diamond which would make my straight (if i hit it) rather useless. In the actual hand, the turn was the 5d giving me the straight but the river was the runner runner diamond. That being said, let’s do the math for 6 outs to lowball the odds needed.

    On the flop, 47 unknown cards remain and 5 cards (my hand, the flop) are known.

    Since I have 6 outs to the nuts, my odds of winning are 6 in 47 or about ~12% of hitting this card on the turn.

    If I miss, I still have 6 in 46 cards to hit the river. This happens another ~13%.

    This makes a total of about 25% to hit on the turn or river.

    If my opponent bets 1/3 the pot, I would only need to win 25% of the time to be profitable. If they bet larger than 33% of the pot, I would be priced out.

  • yamel

    November 2, 2020 at 11:11 am

    Great analysis as usual and interesting spot. My guess is that most would like to play 78hh in later position. From sb if we are coming in, I rather come in with a raise to take the lead and have more ways to win (other than hitting)

    Once we get to the flop, we have one of the best flops we can hope for in an open ended straight draw. I think I would like the check-call line more with a weak pair trying to bluff catch…but with sets, 2 pair and solid draws, I like to lead or check-raise making sure we realize all our equity.

    As played I like a check if we have the intention of check-raising flop to get it in and max fold equity….Really bad timing that button beats us to all in…without fold equity I agree with the fold given the little show down value.

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