Phil Galfond Analyzes Cardschat Member redwards92's Hand
Phil Galfond analyzes a hand played by Cardschat member redwards92 - who was the winner of the Runitonce.com
promo we ran last month.
Here is the hand:
No Limit Holdem - 9 players
Hand converted by PokerTracker 4 (http://www.pokertracker.com)
BTN: 113 BB (VPIP: 15.23, PFR: 12.76, 3Bet Preflop: 3.30, Hands: 245)
Hero (SB): 191 BB
BB: 105.5 BB (VPIP: 18.37, PFR: 16.33, 3Bet Preflop: 15.38, Hands: 50)
UTG: 143 BB (VPIP: 15.04, PFR: 10.62, 3Bet Preflop: 6.98, Hands: 116)
UTG+1: 98 BB (VPIP: 20.00, PFR: 6.67, 3Bet Preflop: 0.00, Hands: 16)
UTG+2: 105.5 BB (VPIP: 9.59, PFR: 4.11, 3Bet Preflop: 2.94, Hands: 73)
MP: 91.5 BB
MP+1: 100 BB (VPIP: 0.00, PFR: 0.00, 3Bet Preflop: 0.00, Hands: 8)
CO: 99.5 BB
posts SB 0.5 BB, BB posts BB 1 BB
Pre Flop: (pot: 1.5 BB) Hero
, UTG+1 calls 1 BB, UTG+2 raises to 5 BB
calls 4.5 BB, fold
Flop: (12 BB, 2 players)
Turn: (12 BB, 2 players)
River: (12 BB, 2 players)
Hero bets 14 BB
, UTG+2 raises to 100.5 BB and is all-in
Bit of a sick spot on the river here vs what appears to be a huge nit.
Here is Phil's analysis:
Our villain opens in early position to 5 BB. He’s got stats thus far of 9.5/4.
I think the most important thing to consider here is how much we can trust these stats. We’ve got a 72 hand sample which is enough to give us a very rough idea of his tendencies, but not enough to be 100% confident.
If he’s only raising 4% of hands, we’d assume that he’s even tighter than that from early position. Additionally his raise sizing, and the fact that he’s raising after a limper, shows strength (though that’s up for interpretation).
For reference, a range of AA,KK,QQ,JJ and AK = 3.0% of hands
Take out JJ and you get roughly 2.6% of hands.
Add JJ back in along with TT and AQs and you get 3.8% (though we have TT and a T hits the river, so we can of course discount that possibility for this specific hand)
All of these sound like reasonable ranges for him to be opening given what we know about him so far.
Calling on the button with TT is a standard play for us, not only for the implied odds of our set against this villain’s tight range, but also against the BB and the EP limper, who may come along as well.
Flop & Turn
I’ve lumped these together because no interesting action takes place. Our hero has played his hand in an extremely standard way on both streets, so nothing to discuss there.
In a poker hand, each street gives you more information about an opponent’s hand. So, what can we glean from Villain’s check back on flop and turn?
Let’s start with his preflop range, and decide to put him on JJ+ and AK.
JJ & QQ: Both make perfect sense for him to have checked back on the flop and turn. We can keep those in his range.
KK: This is trickier. I personally view it as a very big mistake to check back with KK on the flop and especially on the turn. He needs to be trying to build a pot with this hand, and a slowplay across two streets is making that extremely difficult.
From my experience with weaker players, they love to slow play spots like this, especially on a rainbow flop. I’m going to assume that this is a low stakes game, though I don’t have that information, which would slightly change things.
Let’s say that he will slowplay on the flop half the time, and on the turn another half of the time when he has KK.
AK: This is a hand I wouldn’t expect him to check twice. It’s not strong enough to want to super-slowplay, but not weak enough to check twice- he’d be missing too much value.
AA: Same thing as AK but even more true. I think this is a hand he’ll almost always bet before the river.
I think it’s extremely unlikely he’d play AK this way on the flop and turn, but not impossible. Nothing’s impossible.
Here’s where things get interesting. Let’s start with the range of hands we think our Villain has here.
QQ, JJ: We’ll give him all combinations of these hands, meaning we’ll use the rough assumption that he will always play these hands this exact way up until the river. There are 6 combinations of each of these. By that, I mean: QcQh,QcQs,QcQd,QhQs,QhQd,QsQd
Combinations can give you the frequency at which someone has a certain hand in their range. That’s because every combination specific of two cards is equally likely to be dealt to an opponent preflop. So, the more card combinations there are with a specific type of hand, the more likely our opponent is to have it.
For example, if an opponent raises in a certain spot with only AK, AA, and KK, what hand is he most likely to have? A pocket pair or AK?
There are 16 combinations of AK but only 6 of AA and 6 of KK. That means this opponent is more likely to have AK than he is to have both AA and KK combined (16 vs. 12).
KK: There WERE 6 combinations of KK preflop but once one of them shows up on the flop, it reduces the combinations drastically. Specifically, it leaves only 3 combinations from the original 6, since the 3 combinations that included the Kd are now impossible for our Villain to have.
In addition, we decided that our Villain would bet the flop half the time (reducing the 3 combos to 1.5), and bet the turn half the time (reducing that 1.5 to .75).
AK and AA: We decided that both of these hands are unlikely to have been played this way on the flop and turn. For the purposes uncertainty, out of these 18 combos (12 AK after the flopped K, plus 6 AA), let’s include 1 in his range.
After all of that, we’ve given him a rough final range:
QQ/JJ: 12 combos
AA/AK: 1 combo
KK: .75 combos
Our first decision is whether or not to bet, and how much to bet.
Given that the overwhelming majority of our opponent’s range is QQ and JJ, we absolutely want to bet. He will not bet these hands for us.
In addition, if we decide to check-raise and he only bets with AA/AK and KK, we actually are just barely ahead of his betting range… certainly not a good spot to be check-raising.
So, how much should we bet? We are targeting QQ and JJ specifically with this bet, so we want to bet an amount we think that they will call (while still getting as much value as we can)
I would suggest something along the lines of 7-10 BB, but knowing your opponent, or the average player at these stakes would help a decision like this tremendously. I unfortunately don’t know enough to make a great guess here.
Our hero bets 14 into 12, which I think is definitely too much. It scares out QQ/JJ and leaves us getting called by only AA/AK (which he rarely has) and raised by KK (also rare, but not much more rare than AA/AK).
I view this as Hero’s first and only mistake in the hand.
Next, our Villain raises all-in (wow) for 100 BB.
Hero has the 3rd nuts, and given that we think our opponent doesn’t raise 99 preflop, is only beat by one hand (KK).
Looking strictly at hand combinations, our opponent only has KK on this river around 5.5% of the time(.75 out of 13.75 total combos). But that’s obviously not the whole story.
Our opponent made a huge raise, which is very important information.
So, let’s start with what’s easy: AK/AA
I would argue that our opponent will almost never shove with these hands. He has a very easy call and it would make no sense to raise with a hand like this. He’s not getting called by worse, and I doubt he thinks he’d be bluffing or even needs to bluff with these hands.
Yes, of course he would play KK this way if he’s gotten here. That means all .75 combos of KK are still in his range.
What is the likelihood that our opponent will make a play like this with QQ or JJ… turning them into a bluff?
My opinion is that it seems near impossible, but that is up for debate.
The crux of this river decision is the following:
How likely is our opponent to make a completely nonsensical play, and shove this river with AK, AA, QQ or JJ?
We need to call around 86 to win 126, meaning we have almost 1.5:1 odds.
Using odds works well with combination math. We have .75 combos of KK, and we’ll need him to have .75 / 1.5 (.5) combos of bluffs or bizarre value shoves to make this call.
He got to the river with AK,AA, QQ or JJ with 13 combos.
If he takes .5 of these 13 and plays this way, we have a break-even call on the river.
This means that if you think the chance he makes a bizarre play like this when he has those hands around 4% of the time or more, you have a call.
Notice that the fact that we have a monster hand has almost no impact on this calculation. It’s all about figuring out what our opponent has and how he will play it.
I would argue that our opponent, sitting there with QQ or AK, will shove less than 4% of the time. I’d bet it’s under 1%, as it’s such an unusual way to play the hand.
This means that we have a clear fold.
Notice that if our opponent had many more hands in his preflop range, then the strength of our hand probably would force us to call. That’s because we need to heavily consider the fact that our opponent might play a worse hand for value, like 77, 97, T9 or K9 this way.
As it is, we only beat a bluff or a ridiculously bad and bizarre value shove. I think we can lay this down.