This is a discussion on 25nl - Having issues making adjustments and would appreciate advice within the online poker forums, in the Cash Games section; Hi guys, sorry in advance for what may be a long winded post. I've always been given great advice on here and appreciate any help.
25nl - Having issues making adjustments and would appreciate advice
Join Date: Jul 2019
25nl - Having issues making adjustments and would appreciate advice
Hi guys, sorry in advance for what may be a long winded post. I've always been given great advice on here and appreciate any help.
I'm a 6 max 25nl zoom regular and I'm going through a bit of a rough patch with my game. I can chalk some of it up to variance, I haven't run great in general and most of the big pots I've lost I've been ahead in. I've been a winning player for a good while and I know every player goes through this sort of thing and it will pass, but I'm definitely being sub-optimal in a ton of regular spots vs extreme imbalance. I'll write out my issues below and hopefully they make sense.
Facing large bets/high barrelling freq
One of the main issues I've had since moving up from 10nl and playing in the 16nl/25nl pool is that the regs are mindlessly aggressive regarding bet sizes and frequencies, regardless of board texture, ranges etc.
I feel like I'm competent on a basic level in terms of theory. I don't have a solver but I've studied the theory videos on RIO and read through Modern Poker Theory to the point where I have an idea of general concepts.
I understand which boards are good for my range and should be c-bet at a low size/high freq and spots where equities run closer and I should be polarizing my range. I understand how turn cards affect equities, where I should be range checking and how I should be choosing my bluffs on later streets etc.
In terms of defense ranges, I understand that we should be raising more vs smaller 'range bets' and shifting more towards calling vs polarized ranges and bet sizes. The problem I'm having is that most regs have reasonable pre-flop ranges but are just opting for the 100% c-bet 50-75% pot regardless of texture or position with zero checking range, followed up by a 75-90% turn and river bet regardless of the run out and I'm really unsure how to develop an exploitative defense strategy.
I know that the punishment for this strategy is done unto itself and the majority of my win rate comes from just slow playing strong made hands but for the most part I just end up getting bullied off the pot or chasing a draw vs large bets to brick out and fold river.
The main part of this problem is in 3-bet pots where I'm losing a ton of money from calling 3-bets IP with good hands such as QJs, AQs, T9s or hands like 99-JJ and getting 3 streeted or just having to insta-fold on rag flops where I've only got backdoor equity or a weak pair and I'm facing a 90% flop bet. I've managed to counter this somewhat by putting combos of AA into my 3-bet flatting range and I usually get paid every time if I can check-call on a clean runout. I do have a 4-bet bluff range and I don't believe I'm getting exploited by villains who over 3-bet, but more villains who have reasonable 3-bet frequencies and extreme post-flop aggression.
So the obvious exploit seems to be check-raising aggressively and leveraging my equity but honestly villains just don't fold vs aggression, which seems ridiculous on paper but I just end up playing a mindless game of chicken in huge 3-bet pots or having to close my eyes and throw barrels like donkey kong and hope they eventually fold. I'm also facing a ridiculous level of flop check-raising and flop 3-betting as the check-raiser. Again I understand this greatly increases the EV of putting strong hands into my check-raising ranges but in spots where I'm just not making hands I end up bleeding money by calling 10-12bb 3-bets just to fold to near pot size bets on most boards, or peel with overcards/backdoor draws and fold turn.
Getting cold called/squeezed/floated on low boards
It probably makes sense just to bunch these all into one section.
I try to avoid playing OOP as much as possible, but possibly because of increased recreational players I'm getting cold called a ton when opening from UTG-CO, meaning I'm either getting squeezed every open or having to play as the OOP player vs high probe stats.
For example, I open AJs UTG, CO flats, flop is T64 two tone. I check and villain pots. I call and villain pots turn.
I open AKo UTG, HJ flats, flop is 966 two tone. I bet 1/3 pot, villain calls. Turn is offsuit 2, I check and he bets near pot
Obviously these are just a couple of obvious example but if I check flop here villains are probing with 100% frequency usually for a large sizing. Again this increases the expectation of putting strong hands into my check call range but I'm not sure how to play my range vs all the players who are set mining and flatting me with hands like 96s, K6s and 22-88 and getting super sticky/spazzy post flop.
Another issue I'm having is just not being able to get recreational players off hands pre-flop, for example
HJ opens 2.5bbs, BU and SB call. I squeeze to 20bbs in BB with QQ. HJ and BU fold, SB comes along. Flop is AK8r. It checks through. Turn is a blank, villain bets 5bbs, I call. River checks through and he has KTo.
I open AKo in HJ, CO 3-bets to 2 dollars, I 4-bet to 5 dollars as I'm OOP but plan to fold to shove, he calls. Flop is Ah 8h 4d. I check he bets 3.26 and I call. Turn is 4h, it checks through. River is Kd, I bet 6 looking to get calls from weaker Ax/Kx and he calls with J8h for turned flush.
Sorry if all the above was a ton of waffle, and I know that the counter adjustments to these issues will be easier then I've made them out to be, I'm just struggling to adjust and build competent defense ranges.
My issues in summary are:
- Facing high frequency large bet sizes across multiple streets on all textures from population
- Building defense strategy vs high frequency large bet sizes as pre-flop caller in 3-bet pots
- Facing high frequency probe bet for large sizing and getting floated by IP cold callers who are playing a wide range of pocket pairs and suited cards
- Getting regularly squeezed as the pre-flop raiser due to cold calling
- Having little fold equity and facing high probe aggression in 3-bet pots, usually on disconnected or low boards which don't connect with the combos of AK-AQ in my 3-betting range.
If I've left out any important information please let me know, and sorry if I've waffled on a fair bit. I appreciate any advice anyone can give!
In general the higher you go the tougher the pool becomes & lesser the edge. This is specially true in stars. So you have to study & improve alot.My advice is to just drop Pokerstars & move somewhere else
50NL+ zoom games are incredibly reggy it's hard to go beyond that barrier. Not saying there aren't fish around & that you can't
Well if you want to improve, battling with regs then it's good but if you want to make money in cash games then move to a softer pool
There's also a thing called rakeback that pokerstars scams you out of