AK gone wrong

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wreckoning

Guest
So I'm in this casino, playing $1-2 NL Hold'em. 9 players; two chipleaders have about a grand, three have around 300, the remaining have between 80-300. I was winning at another table, and went from my $160 buying to my current stack of around $300. But then I was moved to a new table with players who don't know me. I've been sitting here for an hour, seeing the flop not very often, and missing the flop each time and folding.

I've been watching the other players, and I think they are better than me. It's quite late- 6:30am, I arrive at the casino at 4am- and I am getting ready to leave. Just as I am about to get up, the dealer hands out my cards so I take a peek. It's AK offsuit.

I am in mid position. I raise to $20, because there are a couple of wild players just as likely to play JJ as Q4suited that I want to get rid of. Sure enough they fold, and I get only one caller (after me). He has about $500, and he has been playing very well. I think he can outplay me, but I also think that I know more about him than he knows about me.

The flop comes down Ks-Kh-Qd. I check, he checks as well. I think he has nothing, and I do not think he will put me on the K. The turn comes 3s.

He is a good player; I don't think he would call $20 preflop on K3. But he is not overly tight either, and could very well be playing K10suited etc just to keep me honest. Nor do I think he has KQ. I think that I have him. I bet $15, he raises me to $30, I reraise to $60, he goes to $100.

At this point I start to feel concerned. Is he on the spade flush draw? AQsuited? But he keeps raising me, and he only has one card left. I have indicated that I have the king, yet this doesn't seem to bother him. It's possible that I have AK of spades, or that I have KQ, given that he does not know me. So why is he raising?

I think my hand sucks, but I can't think of what he would have to beat me. At best I think he has AK suited and we will split the pot. So I go all in, hoping that he will call. He does.

He has QQ. I realize I am screwed.

The river brings another Q. I lose all my chips.

Anyways, from the flop he had me 3 to 1, but I was wondering is there a calculater that tells what the chances are of him having QQ? I realize now that since I raised such a large amount for this table preflop and he called, QQ was quite likely. To be honest throughout the game I never really entertained the possibility of him having QQ.

So now I'm thinking that instead of pretending not to have the king, I should have bet on the flop to test his strength and see if he did have QQ. Then once we were raising each other on the turn, I could have folded... because once the river brought another Q, I would have gone all in anyway.

What do you guys think? Did I play really horribly or was it just unlucky for him to hit his Q? I know AK unsuited is not that great, but I wanted to deal with as few people as possible.
 
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zebranky

zebranky

Rock Star
going broke...

Sorry, you're going broke on this hand, and there's almost nothing you can do about it. There's only two hands to beat you - KQ or QQ - and he had one of them. The odds are worse than 1:100 that these were his hole cards - so its extremely difficult to put him on one of these hands. His call PF (rather than a raise with QQ, which is the standard play for that hand) would usually leave me guessing that KQ would be the only hand he could have to beat me.
It's possible not to lose all of your money on trips - but when you've got trip K's with the best kicker, I think its almost impossible not to go broke.

Bad luck, try again next time!
 
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wreckoning

Guest
He probably didn't raise with QQ because I was ahead of him and did make quite a large bet. I'd been sitting at the table as a rock for quite some time and he might have put me on KK or AA and just wanted to see the flop before committing.

Was he obligated to call my all in? After all I could have had KQ, KK or K3 for that matter and had him dominated.
 
zebranky

zebranky

Rock Star
he'll call everytime

He probably didn't raise with QQ because I was ahead of him and did make quite a large bet. I'd been sitting at the table as a rock for quite some time and he might have put me on KK or AA and just wanted to see the flop before committing.

Was he obligated to call my all in? After all I could have had KQ, KK or K3 for that matter and had him dominated.

He still should be raising with QQ on the PF, if only to help determine what you have. The last thing a QQ really wants is to see the flop - most good players are more than happy to make a massive raise PF and just take the pot before any more cards come out.

As for calling - yes, he absolutely will be all-in no matter what you do after that flop comes out. You can't realistically have K3 if you're a rock who raised PF. The odds of you having KK are almost insignificant once that flop comes out. And again, if you've been playing real tight, then it's unlikely you make a big PF raise with KQ. Once you bet (and then re-raised) the turn, I'm sure he knew what you had - the only hand to raise PF, check the turn and re-rase the turn is going to be AK (because he knows where the Q's are).
 
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wreckoning

Guest
Well now that I am reconsidering I think it was a crap move to make a big preflop raise with ak offsuit in such a poor position, and I won't be doing it again anytime soon.
 
C

crash7

Guest
I had him pegged for QQ before finishing reading what happened on the turn. It is the only hand that they could possibly only call pre flop with and check the flop. The raise on the turn should have set off bells and whistles and you should have gotten out of the way right there. You could have made it easier on yourself by betting out on the flop but he would have just smooth called you and you would have to sniff out what that means from a player like that. I think the best you can hope for with a hand like this is when he starts giving resistance or betting back at you to either fold or just flat call and keep it as cheap as possible. Try and hit another K or an A. Coming from a solid player when they choose to play back at you or to stay in a hand chances are they know what theyre doing. And i doubt with your pre flop raise there was any question in his mind that you had the K making it very very easy to trap you.
 
zebranky

zebranky

Rock Star
Well now that I am reconsidering I think it was a crap move to make a big preflop raise with ak offsuit in such a poor position, and I won't be doing it again anytime soon.

Don't sell it short. If anything, a big PF raise is MORE necessary when you're out of position PF, because you want to push out all the marginal hands before they commit chips. $20 might be a little high, but not grossly so. The risk you run, of course, is having high pairs call you and flop out a monster (like the above example), but 9 times out of 10 your raise kills the hands that would hit an average board, and leaves you dominant on the post-flop.
 
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wreckoning

Guest
Crash, he would have done the exact same thing with AK, don't you think?

Zebran, well what about a smaller raise- say $5 or $10 - that might prompt the pairs to reraise and show themselves instead of sneaking in?

I tried just calling with AKo in early position today, at the casino again, and found it working ok, especially on loose tables where people like to play A-rag, catch an A and then overbet. I guess like many things it's situation dependent.

I think I was destined to die in that other hand though; after all the river was a second Q, giving me kings over queens. Even if I was suspicious then and I check, if he goes all in I have to call don't I? Figuring he will have a K and we will chop the pot. Unless tells somehow convince me that he has QQ, tells I didn't have.
 
zebranky

zebranky

Rock Star
Crash, he would have done the exact same thing with AK, don't you think?

Zebran, well what about a smaller raise- say $5 or $10 - that might prompt the pairs to reraise and show themselves instead of sneaking in?

I tried just calling with AKo in early position today, at the casino again, and found it working ok, especially on loose tables where people like to play A-rag, catch an A and then overbet. I guess like many things it's situation dependent.

I think I was destined to die in that other hand though; after all the river was a second Q, giving me kings over queens. Even if I was suspicious then and I check, if he goes all in I have to call don't I? Figuring he will have a K and we will chop the pot. Unless tells somehow convince me that he has QQ, tells I didn't have.

Yes, you're pretty much committed to calling with a KKQQ board. Kicker aside, a bet on the river might suggest he only has 1 Q, giving you the best hand, so you call. I know a lot of people who say "if you don't go broke, you aren't playing it right" about trips and boats. I think you can get away from these hands most times, but not in this case. flopping top trips with top kicker is a go broke hand - because the odds of your opponent having a better hand are ridiculously low.

As for a lower raise PF, I agree. I typical start with 5xBB as my standard raise PF (whether I have a PP, AK, 67s, it doesn't matter), and adjust it up or down as the game progresses. My goal is to average 2 callers every hand I'm in. I've played tables where 10xBB was needed to do this - so, like everything else, it's table dependent. And EP its okay to limp PF, as long as you realize a limped PF means its far more likely someone hits a small two pair on any board you think is yours (e.g. A67), and are willing to fold to strong raises when you do hit
 
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