AK on Button

shinedown.45

shinedown.45

Legend
Joined
Aug 18, 2006
Total posts
5,389
For those having trouble playing AK on the button or LP, here's an example taken from one of sherm's threads awhile back, the advice totally changed the way I play AK in LP or Button.
Feel free to comment and question.

pokerstars Game #10946808518: Tournament #54723005, $10+$1 Hold'em No Limit - Level II (15/30) - 2007/07/15 - 03:24:12 (ET)
Table '54723005 63' 9-max Seat #8 is the button
Seat 1: BabyMinnow9 (1270 in chips)
Seat 3: Blender.01 (2910 in chips)
Seat 4: Ulskun (5690 in chips)
Seat 5: stupid steve (1250 in chips)
Seat 6: WB123456789 (1835 in chips)
Seat 7: bad ham (4140 in chips)
Seat 8: Orion469 (2715 in chips)
Seat 9: BackToSkool (3540 in chips)
BackToSkool: posts small blind 15
BabyMinnow9: posts big blind 30
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to Orion469 [Kc Ad]
Blender.01: calls 30
Ulskun: folds
stupid steve: calls 30
WB123456789: calls 30
bad ham: folds
Orion469: raises 90 to 120
BackToSkool: folds
BabyMinnow9: folds
Blender.01: calls 90
stupid steve: calls 90
WB123456789: calls 90
*** FLOP *** [2d 4c 7h]
Blender.01: checks
stupid steve: checks
WB123456789: checks
Orion469: bets 240
Blender.01: folds
stupid steve: folds
WB123456789: folds
Orion469 collected 525 from pot
Orion469: doesn't show hand
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 525 | Rake 0
Board [2d 4c 7h]
Seat 1: BabyMinnow9 (big blind) folded before Flop
Seat 3: Blender.01 folded on the Flop
Seat 4: Ulskun folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 5: stupid steve folded on the Flop
Seat 6: WB123456789 folded on the Flop
Seat 7: bad ham folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 8: Orion469 (button) collected (525)
Seat 9: BackToSkool (small blind) folded before Flop
 
Emperor IX

Emperor IX

Cardschat Elite
Joined
May 28, 2007
Total posts
2,974
I would've bet 360, but that's how I play just about any hand in position :p
 
shinedown.45

shinedown.45

Legend
Joined
Aug 18, 2006
Total posts
5,389
I had basically put this hand HH up for those players who had trouble playing AK after the flop into a non-scary board.
I had this problem with AK when I joined CC and thought some newbies to the site could benefit from this example.
Have found the actual thread for those interested. https://www.cardschat.com/forum/cash-games-11/big-slick-75292/
 
aliengenius

aliengenius

Cardschat Elite
Joined
Jul 7, 2006
Total posts
4,596
Ill plagiarize myself here again:

The advantages of AK are mostly in it's preflop value:

1. Fold equity. This is the biggest advantage of AK. For me it is almost alway a REraising hand preflop. For you to take advantage of this, you MUST play it aggressively (your opponent must fold). Small pairs can't really call you for fear that you have a bigger pair when you play it aggressively. If you do get called, even by something like QQ, you are still only a slight dog.

2. Pre-flop dominating hand. This is mostly applicable against donks who will call you with Ax soooooded. Inversely, you are only really dominated vs AA or KK (and you have about 30% vs KK).

3. Post flop your top pair always has top kicker when you hit.

Obviously when your opponent goes all in he has neutralized AK's biggest advantage as he can no longer fold. Against two random cards that don't include either and ace or a king you are not that big of a favorite with five to come, as other posters pointed out. But you don't ever really want to be calling an all in with very many hands (AA and KK excepted)-- YOU want to be the one doing the raising or pushing.

Just to look at it another way, let's compare AK to a small pair, say 55.

AK is a dominating hand. IF your raise is called you are (most likely) either:

1. way ahead (vs. a weaker ace)
OR
2. in a 50/50ish race.

With 55 you are (most likely) either:

1. way behind (vs. a bigger pair)
OR
2. in a 50/50ish race.

See the difference?

Rounder's article could almost be about the value of position and continuation betting, rather than about AK. After all, he could have made that (squeeze) play with any two cards.
 
T

try2stopme

Enthusiast
Joined
Jul 8, 2007
Total posts
58
I would have to say i think you have the stronger ace but still in a 50 50 scenerio no matter the low pr or the ace against you with a lower kicker
 
amygrantfan

amygrantfan

Rock Star
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Total posts
301
how would you play that differently if the flop included a queen? i think it makes sense how you outlined when the board is junk like that, but i get confused when there's higher cards like a jack or queen on the flop. would you then just check it? or do you still bet?
 
Emperor IX

Emperor IX

Cardschat Elite
Joined
May 28, 2007
Total posts
2,974
how would you play that differently if the flop included a queen? i think it makes sense how you outlined when the board is junk like that, but i get confused when there's higher cards like a jack or queen on the flop. would you then just check it? or do you still bet?

I bet regardless of what comes out 90% of the time.
 
amygrantfan

amygrantfan

Rock Star
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Total posts
301
i don't think i have those kind of guts. does it usually work? i mean, if you always bet but someone else has something, woudln't they just take a lot of money from you? i thought i recalled one of my experienced friends tell me once a good poker player knows when to lay down a good hand. (that was more relevant when i would never let go of AA or KK even though it was pretty obvious I was beat).

again, thx for starting the thread. it is quite helpful for newbies to think about such things.
 
P

ph_il

...
Joined
Feb 5, 2005
Total posts
9,845
Awards
1
i don't think i have those kind of guts. does it usually work? i mean, if you always bet but someone else has something, woudln't they just take a lot of money from you? i thought i recalled one of my experienced friends tell me once a good poker player knows when to lay down a good hand. (that was more relevant when i would never let go of AA or KK even though it was pretty obvious I was beat).
again, thx for starting the thread. it is quite helpful for newbies to think about such things.

A continuation bet with AK is good if the flop is pretty dry. Especially if you're also in position, so it'll also depend on how your opponents before you have acted.

Say the board is Qh 4d 2s. Thats a pretty dry flop [flops that have very unlikely helped anyone.] and worth c-betting if your opponents check to you. Say you bet a little bit of half the pot to test the waters and get called with a Q. This is ok for 2 reasons. 1) you have position over your opponent. So if they check, you can just check behind them. If they bet, you let the hand go and you've lost the minimum. 2) If your opponent checks to you, you have a chance of hitting an A or K on the turn.

You really want to c-bet on dry flops. Flops like 7h 8h 9h are usually not worth c-betting because its very likely to have hit/helped an opponent. This also depends how many players are in a hand with you. If its 1 or 2, a c-bet is ok if your opponents show weakness, but be ready to throw it away/slow down if you get called.
 
Emperor IX

Emperor IX

Cardschat Elite
Joined
May 28, 2007
Total posts
2,974
i don't think i have those kind of guts. does it usually work? i mean, if you always bet but someone else has something, woudln't they just take a lot of money from you?

If when you make a c-bet you are called down, it then comes down to a situational decision as to whether or not to fire a second bullet on the turn.

Greg "FBT" Mueller said:
Recently, while playing in the World Poker Tour event at The Mirage, an opponent launched a double-barrel bluff against me, and he got me to lay down the best hand. It was early in the tournament and I was in late position. My opponent, a pro whose play I respect, raised from early position, and I called with Ac-4c. The flop came A-J-7, rainbow with one club. My opponent bet out and I called. The turn brought a blank, and my opponent put out a very large bet.

I was in a tough spot. It was early in the tournament, and I didn't want to call off most of my chips with this hand. I was pretty certain the bettor wouldn't have fired a bet of that size with something like A-K or A-Q. With a hand like that, he'd have to worry that he was beat, and he'd probably try to get to the showdown as cheaply as possible. I figured he either had a very big hand - maybe a set of Jacks - or not much at all.
In the end, I decided to lay down my pair of Aces. My opponent then showed pocket Kings.

I give my opponent a lot of credit for playing the hand well. He had a good sense for how much heat I was willing to take. His play illustrates the most important consideration when deciding if you should continue with a bluff: Your opponent's mindset.

If you're up against an opponent who is unwilling to play without a very big hand, firing the second bullet can force them to make some bad lay downs. To make this work, however, you need to estimate the price a particular player is willing to pay, and then bet more than he seems capable of handling. In the hand I discussed above, my opponent zeroed in on a price I couldn't stomach.

Sometimes, a meek player will get stubborn and try to get through a hand by calling you down with something like second pair. You need to have a sense that he's trying to get through the hand in this way, then price your bets so that he won't be able to call.
If, however, you're against a guy who has shown a willingness to call any bet of any size with just about any hand, then you need back off and wait till you flop a monster.

In the end, the most important thing is to know your opponent. If you're attentive at the table and pick up on the tendencies of those around you, you'll find some nice opportunities for double-barrel bluffs.
 
amygrantfan

amygrantfan

Rock Star
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Total posts
301
thx both of you. the advice is pretty cool. i like this site! :)

ok, now for my stupid question, what is c-betting?
 
P

ph_il

...
Joined
Feb 5, 2005
Total posts
9,845
Awards
1
Continuation betting. Basically, its continueing to bet after you've bet/raised preflop.
 
amygrantfan

amygrantfan

Rock Star
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Total posts
301
oh, got it. that makes sense. cuz theoritically you have a strong hand if you raised, so then you continue that bet. i learn something new every day:)
 
Emperor IX

Emperor IX

Cardschat Elite
Joined
May 28, 2007
Total posts
2,974
Yeah I honestly never understood what the C stood for until I was typing my post, when I started typing "C-betting is basically just continu...wait. OMG" then I backspaced, and forgot to say it. My it's so late. lol

EDIT: Wow, what a 400th post. lol
 
P

ph_il

...
Joined
Feb 5, 2005
Total posts
9,845
Awards
1
oh, got it. that makes sense. cuz theoritically you have a strong hand if you raised, so then you continue that bet. i learn something new every day:)

You dont have to have a strong hand to C-bet. Its nice to have a strong hand to back up your bets, though. If you're a new player, I'd recommend having a decent-strong hand when C-betting.

C-betting is added aggression giving you a chance to pick up unwanted pots. Especially if the flops are dry.

Ex: on the button I raise with Q9o and get 2 callers. The flop is 3s 5h 8d. My opponents check to me, I c-bet, and my opponents fold. They fold because A) the flop didnt help them. B) Im still showing strength and representing a big/better hand.
 
Emperor IX

Emperor IX

Cardschat Elite
Joined
May 28, 2007
Total posts
2,974
I think by theoretically they meant "representing", but yes, very true.
 
amygrantfan

amygrantfan

Rock Star
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Total posts
301
i'm gonna try that next time i play. if live, i will have to wear sunglasses, cuz i bet my eyes would be a big tell that i had nothing hehe. online i suppose it's much easier cuz they won't see me sweating!
 
Top