Dealing with Aggression (LAG-type)
Hey Gang -
I just typed out a very long post about dealing with the LAG player who sits directly on your left - and what I realized when I finished the post was I had no idea how to deal with the player.
Setting - Online Cash Game - 1/2 NL, 6-handed.
Villain is directly to my left, and has on countless times flat-called my raise pre, and raised me post-flop. I have a pretty high C-Bet %, and I'm pretty sure by this point in time I have a pretty high 'fold C-Bet to raise %'. On a couple occaisons I have 3-bet his raise, and he has shown no hesitation in 4-betting it.
Now, to the hand!
Dealt to me in CO - QQ. Couple limpers - raise to 5 BBs, villain (BTN) calls, one limper calls. ~17 BBs in pot.
Flop comes Q95r. I C-Bet ~10 BBs, Villain raises (~30 BBs), prev limper folds, I reraise (~75 BBs), villain shoves, putting me at risk for my $300 stack. I of course, call.
Villain shows over J9. Fails to catch running 9s, of course.
No, here is where I get confused. Obv I was best with any Q here, but the bottom of my raising spectrum at this table would probably be about QJs, maybe QTs if I was trying to make a play on the blinds, and merely betting for my hand's drawing value. Had I had a hand like KQ, on this board I would have had to fold to his shove. If I call his flop raise, then he most likely shoves on the turn (or bets a lot). And Tp Weak Kicker isn't a hand I like taking to showdowns in weak pots.
So it's obvious I need to adjust a combination of a few possible factors in my game. I can think of the following -
1. C-Bet less. This is probably the easiest one to do. However in doing this, when I do C-Bet I'm more likely to have a hand. If, for instance, over the first hour of my session I raise 30 hands pre, and c-bet 22 of them, then over the next hour of my session I raise 30 hands pre, and c-bet 6 of them, obv it becomes a lot more clear when i have a strong hand.
2. Play fewer hands. While there are plenty of players who will say their favorite playstyle is to play fewer hands, with a much narrower range than I play, it's not a playstyle I like playing. That's not to say that it wouldn't work in this situation. I believe our villain was punishing me for playing a lot of hands. And had he not paid me off with the nuts I would have continued letting him.
3. Play looser against our villain? Here is where it gets dangerous. If I start 3-betting him post in hopes of him remembering the sour taste I left in his mouth when he was drawing all but dead to my top set, he may start giving me credit for a hand (ussually I'd have TpTk or so when I'd c-bet). However, I run the risk of falling into the same trap I laid for him.
Eventually I was perplexed by the villain and decided I couldn't beat such a loose aggressive player on my left, had a discussion with my friend a bout it, who admitted he had the same trouble, and stored it away into t he annals of poker history until I decided to bring it up here.
I think the easy way out is to change tables. In a tournament, I think you have to tighten up. But in a cash game were you can net X BBs/hour by stealing blinds, especially 6 handed, I'm not sure that's the correct answer.
So this is my cry for help. I would consider it the weakest point of my game (having not played for about a week, most of my poker interaction has been studying and discussion and hand review).
What do you do against a very aggressive villain on your left?