3 betting pocket 7s from the cutoff

Bill_Hollorian

Bill_Hollorian

Rock Star
Hi everyone,

As most know, I don't enjoy discussing hands which involve "tells". Discussions can always end with... Well, if you had a tell on him, its not a bad play. in other words plays based on tells are very hard to discuss. However, tells are a small part of the game, and can be crutial at times.

UTG Tight agressive straight forward player. He is playing by the book poker. Correct values from correct positions for accurate pot values.

Brings in for a raise. All fold to you in the cut off. You place your opponent on a range of hands with a confident degree of accuracy. He has AA, KK, QQ. No other hand is possible for this player. You then look at his stack, peek at your cards and see 2 red 7's.

On the button behind you is a creative, tricky, strong player. Let's get him out. Your 7's are no good for sure, but knowing what your opponent has, and him not knowing what you have, plus position gives you a solid long term expectation. We raise him. The button reraises, but you see something, which you've seen before. He protects his cards differently, holding them under hishand, instead of using a chip as he has done for the most part. He is tricky he is smart, he knows what he is doing, and probably believes you have picked up on this minor behavioral adjustment.

What does this mean?
Is this something he is aware he is doing, or something he is not aware of?
What do you do?

It gets called by UTG.
You have not gained position as you had hoped. But you now really have odds to call.
You will be stuck in the middle.

Do you call, raise or fold?

Bill

I am back from the wedding, so Ill be around again.
I missed you all.
 
t1riel

t1riel

Legend
It's probably not much of a tell if he was "holding them under his hand." I would fold. Even if he didn't have pocket pairs higher than yours, he still probably has two over cards. Sure, it's a good hand to call with, btu against two players with two different styles of gameplay, the outlook doesn't look good. By the way, what happened? Tell us the end of the story. :eek:
 
C

chicubs1616

Guest
If you are sure that UTG has QQ-AA, the only reason you could hope to win this hand is if you spike a 7.

Forget about the button, if you already are drawing to two cards, you really shouldn;t be in the hand.

If I am in this spot and I KNOW that UTG has QQ-AA, there is no question that I am folding this preflop.
 
Bill_Hollorian

Bill_Hollorian

Rock Star
With perfect information, and position, you are a favorite over any starting value, depending on his preflop action. The dilemna is raising may get you the button, but opens a new betting round for your opponent. call and you dont gain the button. Big bet poker is a different animal, the bigger games against solid opponents will usually be 2 to a flop. regardless of your draw, you will have to learn to win without cards. You must be willing to commit a small percentage of chips, with marginal hands that are completely dominated. Information and position in such games tip any dominated hand in your favor preflop, provided its not that expensive.

When do you take the plunge?
I can argue this is a great hand, I say reraise and get that button.

Bill
 
robwhufc

robwhufc

Cardschat Elite
No Sorry, this one I just don't get. You've got a pair, he's got an over pair, yet YOUR favourite because you know what he's got and have got position? Your going to raise into a hand knowing you wont win it on hand values, but with a view to out manouvering him on subsequent betting rounds? How do you know he's going to fold if you bet into him - unless you're lucky enough to get a danger flop, he's going to think he's ahead isn't he? If an A or K flop you could represent a higher pair, but how to you know he hasn't made trips?

It seems blatantly obvious that an experienced, observent player will let this one go. Why pick this situation to use your "superior" card skills?
 
Dorkus Malorkus

Dorkus Malorkus

HELLO INTERNET
I get the hell out of the hand as soon as I put UTG on AA-QQ, the Button's raise is pretty irrelevant. If I have such a good read on UTG that I can place him on such narrow ranges of hands with regularity it's obvious you want to play with him when you know you're ahead of most of his range, not a huge underdog. Yes you have sky-high implied odds if your set hits, but if an A/K/Q flops as well you're still going to be unsure as to whether you're actually ahead or not (usually logic dictates not to fear set over set, but if you put an opponent on 3 hands, one of which is top set it must be considered), as most players will play AA with a K7x flop just as they would play KK on a K7x flop.

That said, Button's actions are interesting. He must know the UTG raiser has a strong hand, and you have raised the UTG raiser, so this would be a bizarre spot to bluff in. The covering the cards may well be a classic "weak means strong" signal, and he is probably trying to induce calls.

The fact my 77 is a huge underdog to UTG coupled with the strange actions of Button make this a doubly easy fold (assuming the raises are standard pot or near-pot raises).

FWIW, I put UTG on a QQ he's not good enough to fold in this spot (him not pushing after Button's rereraise points hugely to QQ as opposed to AA/KK) and Button on AA/KK.
 
X

xdmanx007

Legend
Bill_Hollorian said:
With perfect information, and position, you are a favorite over any starting value, depending on his preflop action. The dilemna is raising may get you the button, but opens a new betting round for your opponent. call and you dont gain the button. Big bet poker is a different animal, the bigger games against solid opponents will usually be 2 to a flop. regardless of your draw, you will have to learn to win without cards. You must be willing to commit a small percentage of chips, with marginal hands that are completely dominated. Information and position in such games tip any dominated hand in your favor preflop, provided its not that expensive.

When do you take the plunge?
I can argue this is a great hand, I say reraise and get that button.

Bill
OH I LOVE UNCONVENTIONAL HANDS LIKE THESE! 3 way with a low medium pair which by the time it comes around 1 bet to call 13 bets. I generally preach the bets you save are as important as the ones you win at this point the potodds justify a call. OK here's why I really like it against a TA getting his chips your way is not gonna be easy and if you can reasonably expect the tendency of most players to check to the preflop aggressor you very easily might get a free turn or some some scary ass flop to a man holding a big pocket. I don't just know a bunch of random thoughts but live and in person I probably dump preflop but if you think you can get him off his queens by being aggressive OR hit a set you have just blasted a home run! Basically seems to me we have a blending of the math part of limit to the human aspect and of course if you can master both you now have your dream profession! I like it Bill adding a little moxy to a game that is played mostly analytical!
 
Bill_Hollorian

Bill_Hollorian

Rock Star
Ok lets reraise. See if UTG had AA, or KK he would have to reraise, it is important to him to get heads up. He must have qq. We can get him off that hand. He is already doubting his hand is best. Tricky button player has to lay down. He now believes his hand is behind 2 opponents. He's gotta dump this time. And he does.

The thing to focus on is not what your hand needs to improve, but what UTG needs. We are now going to play his cards for him, if a q hits we are gone. Certain coordinated flops will also force us to exit stage left. But, the large majority of flops will definatley miss him, and he will be standing on a hand he believes is beat. He is aggressive he will bet the flop for informational purposes. Right about now, lets give him some information.
1.) We raise flops that do not connect with qq. or, if an A or K. falls.
2.) If the flop is sufficiently UNcoordinated we call.
calling here is powerful if your opponent is savvy enough to think you are not drawing, and have a made hand. This is gap theory, just be sure he has read a few things about it. It will confirm his original position that he is unlucky enough to have his QQ run into AA or KK, which is what he is starting to confirm you have.
The turn will bring a check, he now puts the brakes on, you have convinced him he is beat. If he bets, you raise. This is when he will lay it down.

In position value any hand plus 3ev. Also be sure your opponent is solid, tight, in other words idiots are not capable of laying down qq. You need a decent opponent for a play like this.

I'm interested in your thoughts

Bill
 
bubbasbestbabe

bubbasbestbabe

Suckout Queen
I understand what you are saying here, but to throw a wrench in the works, what if he is playing a hand like you are? If you are at this level of play you cannot rule this out. What else would give you an advantage over him? And just out of curiosity, what's the deal with where he holds his cards?
 
Dorkus Malorkus

Dorkus Malorkus

HELLO INTERNET
Makes me wonder what Button had. :)

Being able to put UTG on one hand and one hand only is a huge advantage preflop. My only concern with your argument is that either he's not "good" enough to lay down QQ preflop (yes, it obviously would be a mistake, but all the action points towards QQ being beat here), and therefore I feel I would be giving him a lot of credit in thinking he would fold it postflop on anything but the scariest of boards. Either that, or you've given something away and he knows exactly what you're doing with your low pair. As a straightforward ABC TAG I guess he doesn't have the ability to read you so well and is just being too stubborn to fold it.

Once again I must argue that if UTG is playing so standardly that reading him is very easy, I wait until I'm ahead of him, or ahead of most of his range. There's no need to get tricky with someone whose cards you practically already know. If you are absolutely certain he will fold under if the post-flop conditions you stated are met, then the play is not a horrible one, but from the information you've given I doubt he's good enough to fold it in most cases.

One other thing, with all this raising, what on earth are the stack sizes? Limit or NL? If this is limit, he may well call down as it's "only" a couple more bets in a huge pot, if it's NL most of his stack is probably in already unless stacks are incredibly deep, and he may well be pot committed.
 
robwhufc

robwhufc

Cardschat Elite
I agree with Dorkus - limit game you're not going to get someone off of QQ unless it is obvious they are beat. And if you've got the player tagged as tight aggressive, they're going to be slamming into you with this hand.

Bill, you've got an insight to top end poker that none of us have - would a top-flight tight-aggressive player lay down QQ if it was an over pair to the board? If he would, what hands would he ever expect to win? I'm very much a beginner level player, but all the books I have read say that if you think it's likely you've got best hand (which you would with QQ), you push it, and if you get beat you get beat. Even if you do get to river and think you've got done (e.g Ace flops), it's better in the long run to call because you only have to hit once in a while to make profit.
 
Bill_Hollorian

Bill_Hollorian

Rock Star
A: pot limit holdem.

OK lets go one level deeper. As a good tight player, his qq odds are not enough of an edge to reraise. He is concerned that when action returns, if he raises, then we raise, and the button raises again, his qq will be priced out, he would not have that concern with AA, or KK. With 2 aggressive tricky players behind him, he is concerned these queens may become to expensive, and against 2 opponents, if he doesn't improve it could be devastating to him.

Tricky button guy held his cards, you determine this is a reverse tell, for the benefit of UTG. Theoretically when you like cards you protect them better, hold them closer, like your kids. He is trying to signal to UTG that he had better not reraise or he'll be sorry. So, this adds to the weight of UTG to call at this point. However, the buttons jedi mind nonsense wont work on you. You repop and he lays down.
UTG is confused, what just happened there, but before he catches up the flop hits, he is aggresive and "auto" bets,ie. continuation bet, information bet. You call, cause you are tricky and setting him up. (it saves you some money, simultaneously sending the message that your hand is so powerful, you are willing to show it down. Now he is scared, he thinks you would have raised the pot with a weeker hand for fold equity. The job is done. he is looking for a way out of his hand. He checks the turn, You bet 75% of the pot again. Wow this is expensive, wait him out. wait, ah there goes his cards in the muck...
Big laydown sir.

I am not responsible for wins. I am responsible for presenting information for others to interpret and make mistakes over. My opponent is responsible for my wins, if he makes no mistakes, I can not win. I am responsible for my loses. The only way I can lose is to make mistakes.

In bigger games, you rarely see more than 2 to the flop. Small edges must be maximized. The edge here is specifically using UTG's tendencies against him.

Here is an analogy. If you were a boxer, and someone said you could Know where every punch and move your opponent makes in advance, but you must fight with 1 arm tied behind your back. Would you? Sure that informational advantage is huge. Knowing this opponent so well is the equivalent. Your pocket 7's are like the 1 arm tied behind your back.

Cool Thanks everyone I am enjoying this discussion very much.

Real estate - location, location, location
Poker - Position, position, position

Bill
 
Last edited:
tenbob

tenbob

Legend
Awards
1
Great thread Bill, ive been putting a good bit of thought into this one over the last few days, and ive come to the conclusion that while its a very dangerous play its one that can work against SOME players.

From what i can see your own hole cards here dont matter, you know your dominated and your goal is to make your single opponent fold. The limits have to be high and you need as you pointed out a very good read on your opponent. I tried this in a low limit ring game on-line over the weekend and failed.

To transfer this over to no-limit Bill how would you play it ? Because i made this move last night in a €50(~$65) single table no limit game last night and it worked a treat. Here is how i played it.

I had doubled up on the first hand AA vs KK, but my stack was being eated away by the blinds, and there was one player in particular that i felt that this would work against.

I had the button with 55, and this guy raised 4XBB from middle position, and after about 25-30 cold hands i felt it was time to try to make a move, i felt that all-in was a bad play, so this thread popped again into my mind and i made a decision to play it out, this guy was a solid player but he raised a lot, i felt that he had raised a medium ace maybe A10 or AJ,and he was the tables big stack. I put in a flat call, and it was heads up.

The flop came no help but i put 2 to a flush and 3 to a straight on the board, cant even remember it now but i think it was something like 7h8h2c, now our solid player as expected bet the pot out at me, and i called quickly, turn was another 2, expecting the check at this stage, but no another bet, (thinking im in big trouble here, but i had decided this was the route to take) so i called. The river was the card i was waiting for Kh, and now came the check from our solid player, so now i was all-in, he folded. I went on to take this game down.

Now i think that any other player at the table would have called the last bet, but i think that even in no-limit, its a good alternative stratigy to the all-in bet when you need to make a move.

Hope this post makes sense guys, it was a little rushed.
 
Bill_Hollorian

Bill_Hollorian

Rock Star
Actually, I think this is what Im trying to say. The important points are this.

1.) It will faill more than it will work. The reason is, as so many pointed out, you are mathematically behind.
2.) How many times does it need to work to show profit. In other words if it fails 5 times, and you lose 100 per try, but works once and you bust a guy for 1000. Well, theres a profitable margin there.
3.) The most important point: You stopped playing your cards, and truly played position! You played HIS cards for him! Everyone asks well what did you have? are you nuts?
Answer: My cards are pointless. I am forcing him to make a mistake with his cards! HIS draw is to expensive, and HE missed, not me, I have the button.

Good job. Again, very important to choose your spots, and your opponents. It will fail more than it will work. Be sure it is a profitable place to execute. A good guide is your bets must win you the button pre flop, and he must CALL (not reraise) your reraise, after he raised himself the first time. Those are the signs to watch for.

Bill
 
-2222-

-2222-

Guest
Bill_Hollorian said:
Actually, I think this is what Im trying to say. The important points are this.

1.) It will faill more than it will work. The reason is, as so many pointed out, you are mathematically behind.
2.) How many times does it need to work to show profit. In other words if it fails 5 times, and you lose 100 per try, but works once and you bust a guy for 1000. Well, theres a profitable margin there.
3.) The most important point: You stopped playing your cards, and truly played position! You played HIS cards for him! Everyone asks well what did you have? are you nuts?
Answer: My cards are pointless. I am forcing him to make a mistake with his cards! HIS draw is to expensive, and HE missed, not me, I have the button.

Good job. Again, very important to choose your spots, and your opponents. It will fail more than it will work. Be sure it is a profitable place to execute. A good guide is your bets must win you the button pre flop, and he must CALL (not reraise) your reraise, after he raised himself the first time. Those are the signs to watch for.

Bill
Bill,

Who is not going to re-raise you from EP with QQ?

I have seen a lot of hand histories from (really) good high limit players and all are capping QQ in EP - if they don't cap, you know that they have less than KK and there aint anyway they are going to give that sort of info away.

So this player is tight weak, not so solid after all.

TenBob, I woulda called your action in a heartbeat. Only Donkeys play AK to the River like that so I would not suspect you of AK (ie, give you credit for not being a donkey) - KK maybe but to make sure, I would have bet the Turn much harder in his position. I would have put him on on a middle pair to QQ and if I were him with that sort of holding, you would have been busted.
 
Bill_Hollorian

Bill_Hollorian

Rock Star
Tight weak, fits this criteria for sure... But, when UTG raises, he is stating his hand is powerful, when you reraise you are saying I acknowlege that your announcing extreme power, but I am not worried. Your call on the flop is really scary. Tight aggressive style requires big laydowns here. He knows that out of position he needs to keep the lead, but he just can't. Being tight aggressive requires that you have the abilit to get away from hands. Aggressive does not mean taking a hand and run it through no matter what out of position. With the information presented he interprets this and concludes that he just can't invest to see if he is right or wrong.
The reasons: Preflop you have to value your hand in pot limit. re popping means that your opponent in position can re pop, and this bet affects the size of the bets post flop. He is trying to keep the pot managable, for post flop play. The thing is if he has AA or KK he wont care. But QQ thats actually the right way to play it.

The conclusion went like this: He fired on the flop, I called. He fired on the turn I raised. He tanks then tosses QQ into the muck up to show how big of a lay down he made. After the pot is pushed to me, I muck my 77 into the muck down, and mutter that I played that wrong. I asked how he new that I had AA? and complimented him for saving so many bets, explaining that I would have a hard time laying that down. He smiled and said he felt my AA from across the table. Good read sir.

PS. I actually don't think I would have played the QQ from under the gun much differently. I think I would also have ended up mucking, I would like to think I would have played it the same way, but probably check folded the turn. However, that being said it is only a nominal savings.
Yes, I sometimes lay down the best hand. Plaiying out of position is just that difficult.

Bill
 
XXIII

XXIII

Rock Star
I will go with one of 2 things. At the beginning you said you got his tells down and you know he is a VERY tight player. You know he plays top hands. Now you added this time he changed his regular motion. Instead of his normal chip holder he keeps his cards guarded. That shows me something about his hand is different then normal. He might be hoping everyone else notices he is a tight player and he is trying to get some extra money/chips.

Or he has a solid hand that he is not sure about. He is trying to get heads up so he has a better shot at winning. So I'd put him at AJ suited or something like that. Now you can always fold and it will not cost you anything more. Or you can see a flop and see what hits. I'd at least see a flop. If all the cards are low you could most likely knock him off the hand with a solid bet.
 
Bill_Hollorian

Bill_Hollorian

Rock Star
Sorry xxxii.
I addressed that in a follow up post. The person with that tell was on the button, we knocked him out with our second reraise preflop. That tell was for the benefit of the UTG. He was indicating to the UTG that he like his hand, but it was a reverse tell. I don't know what he mucked, but our read was correct.
Does that address the read issue?

Thanks
Bill
 
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