The Art of the Check-Raise (Day 27 Course Discussion)

Debi

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In the Art of the Check-Raise we learn that back in the early days of poker it was not cool to check-raise but today it can be vital when playing out of position.

If you have not yet read Day 27 and watched the video for Day 27 - take a few minutes now to do that and then come back here to discuss it:

The Art of the Check-Raise

We saw some great hand examples in the video. Let's discuss the 3 key factors for effective check-raising with Katie and Collin in this thread.

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Polytarp

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Check-raising can make players mad because it's as if (and is) someone is blind-siding them and is the classical "prisoner's dilemma"...there is also the component where one player is planning to check raise the other player but the other player beat him to it then the first player feigns innocence pretending to be above such a betrayal of an implied understanding. I found it to be an emotional tool because you can drive some players to distraction and they may go bonkers if you do this too often and show great delight in doing so and winning...(via trash talk:D). On the receiving end of being check-raised constantly by bigger stacks has made me seethe and vow vengeance against the perpetrator(s) at the earliest opportunity as well. If the other players are smart they will vex you and then treat their check raises like a yo-yo so that you don't change your game or leave the table. Check-check raises are nice when they work but devastating when they don't..nobody's perfect.

Most times when I check raise it's to bust a player and take all of their chips..like a one-two punch combination. Have either of you had something like this happen where you actually felt bad about succeeding in check-raising someone and taking their chips? I remember a live game where a younger person, student probably, had a full house but I had a larger full house. The person was genuinely shocked and looked like they were about to cry. I felt kind of guilty for succeeding so well..but then again, karma has a way of coming around and balancing things out so I had to take it in the teeth myself..but I took it like man..and didn't cry in public:D
 
Debi

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Check-raising can make players mad because it's as if (and is) someone is blind-siding them and is the classical "prisoner's dilemma"...there is also the component where one player is planning to check raise the other player but the other player beat him to it then the first player feigns innocence pretending to be above such a betrayal of an implied understanding. I found it to be an emotional tool because you can drive some players to distraction and they may go bonkers if you do this too often and show great delight in doing so and winning...(via trash talk:D). On the receiving end of being check-raised constantly by bigger stacks has made me seethe and vow vengeance against the perpetrator(s) at the earliest opportunity as well. If the other players are smart they will vex you and then treat their check raises like a yo-yo so that you don't change your game or leave the table. Check-check raises are nice when they work but devastating when they don't..nobody's perfect.

Most times when I check raise it's to bust a player and take all of their chips..like a one-two punch combination. Have either of you had something like this happen where you actually felt bad about succeeding in check-raising someone and taking their chips? I remember a live game where a younger person, student probably, had a full house but I had a larger full house. The person was genuinely shocked and looked like they were about to cry. I felt kind of guilty for succeeding so well..but then again, karma has a way of coming around and balancing things out so I had to take it in the teeth myself..but I took it like man..and didn't cry in public:D

It can definitely tilt your opponents - and yourself sometimes!
 
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fernando21

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Check-raising must be used at the correct frequency, even though it is a powerful move. You are making the pot bigger when you have a positional disadvantage, which can lead to many difficult situations. Another danger is check-raising on dry flops where it’s tough for your opponent to have a hand strong enough to call. This allows them to play perfectly by folding a second-best hand. This principle also comes into play on turns where it is normal to raise your nutted hands.

The image you wanna create is someone to be feared. You want to be feared in all situations
 
Collin Moshman

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Polytarp, don't feel bad about it, poker is war!

Fernando, very true on having the right frequencies. Too low and for sure you won't be feared at all when playing OOP. So that's a great point :)
 
liuouhgkres

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Check-raising is something that I worked a lot this year and in this course it was one of first things that I looked, because I was genuinely interested to see how they approached it. But sadly, I was disappointed.

First of all, there is no such thing as when we want to check-raise. We always want to check-raise, but with different frequencies. On dry boards that suit preflop aggressor, we want to check raise less. On boards that suit us, we want to check-raise more. So let's say BB vs BTN, flop comes AK5. On this board we want to check-raise around 5%. But if you follow this course, you will have 0%. Conversely, if we look at another extreme, let's say, BB vs BTN flop 993, we need to check-raise around 30%, might be even more. But if you follow this course, you will have 5%, because you will not have bluffs.

Speaking about bluffs, Collin Moshman and Katie Dozier advocate to check-raise draws and that's it.vWell, if you look at solver you can see that it uses variety of low equity and high equity bluffs. Nick Petrangelo breaks bluffs into 3 parts: high equity bluffs (A high fd, oesd...), low equity bluffs (double backdoors, two overcards...) and some bottom pairs that will allow us to catch 2nd pairs and trips on variety of boards. Unfortunately this course doesn't mention none of these possible bluffs.
 
Katie Dozier

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it`s was funny)))

Glad to hear you enjoyed it! :)
Check-raising is something that I worked a lot this year and in this course it was one of first things that I looked, because I was genuinely interested to see how they approached it. But sadly, I was disappointed.

First of all, there is no such thing as when we want to check-raise. We always want to check-raise, but with different frequencies. On dry boards that suit preflop aggressor, we want to check raise less. On boards that suit us, we want to check-raise more. So let's say BB vs BTN, flop comes AK5. On this board we want to check-raise around 5%. But if you follow this course, you will have 0%. Conversely, if we look at another extreme, let's say, BB vs BTN flop 993, we need to check-raise around 30%, might be even more. But if you follow this course, you will have 5%, because you will not have bluffs.

Speaking about bluffs, Collin Moshman and Katie Dozier advocate to check-raise draws and that's it.vWell, if you look at solver you can see that it uses variety of low equity and high equity bluffs. Nick Petrangelo breaks bluffs into 3 parts: high equity bluffs (A high fd, oesd...), low equity bluffs (double backdoors, two overcards...) and some bottom pairs that will allow us to catch 2nd pairs and trips on variety of boards. Unfortunately this course doesn't mention none of these possible bluffs.


I'm sorry to hear that you were disappointed with this section. One of the challenging aspects of creating a poker course is in breaking down concepts in which there are always multiple levels to consider. Aside from the true fundamentals, it is always up for debate as to which skills belong in which category of play--beginner, intermediate, and advanced. Our course is for beginning to intermediate players and I feel that our discussion on check-raising reflects that well :) Should we have the opportunity to create a course geared towards advanced players, I promise we will have quite a bit more to say about check-raising as it is one of my favorite topics!
 
liuouhgkres

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Glad to hear you enjoyed it! :)



I'm sorry to hear that you were disappointed with this section. One of the challenging aspects of creating a poker course is in breaking down concepts in which there are always multiple levels to consider. Aside from the true fundamentals, it is always up for debate as to which skills belong in which category of play--beginner, intermediate, and advanced. Our course is for beginning to intermediate players and I feel that our discussion on check-raising reflects that well :) Should we have the opportunity to create a course geared towards advanced players, I promise we will have quite a bit more to say about check-raising as it is one of my favorite topics!

I looked at several sections and imho you completely skipped true fundamentals. True fundamentals are board dynamics and range interactions. I didn't watch everything, but where I watched I didn't see much talk about these two most important concepts. This course is definitely not for intermediate players. At pokerstars low stakes regs are definitely using concepts beyond this course. Coming back to check-raising... If I could lay these things out in two paragraphs, I think you could squeeze them in your videos too.
 
Collin Moshman

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I looked at several sections and imho you completely skipped true fundamentals. True fundamentals are board dynamics and range interactions. I didn't watch everything, but where I watched I didn't see much talk about these two most important concepts. This course is definitely not for intermediate players. At pokerstars low stakes regs are definitely using concepts beyond this course. Coming back to check-raising... If I could lay these things out in two paragraphs, I think you could squeeze them in your videos too.


I suggest reading the eBook, in particular the opening section: "Introduction: How This Course Works." If you want to create a course for intermediate and advanced players that focuses on board dynamics and range interactions, I'll be the first one to read and watch it :)
 
cferdi

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Check-raising is something that I worked a lot this year and in this course it was one of first things that I looked, because I was genuinely interested to see how they approached it. But sadly, I was disappointed.

First of all, there is no such thing as when we want to check-raise. We always want to check-raise, but with different frequencies. On dry boards that suit preflop aggressor, we want to check raise less. On boards that suit us, we want to check-raise more. So let's say BB vs BTN, flop comes AK5. On this board we want to check-raise around 5%. But if you follow this course, you will have 0%. Conversely, if we look at another extreme, let's say, BB vs BTN flop 993, we need to check-raise around 30%, might be even more. But if you follow this course, you will have 5%, because you will not have bluffs.

When I see people regularly either over-betting or check-raising board with pairs (like your 993 example), I will often challenge them or trap them so with a frequency of 30% I'd notice and wait my chance. Have done this so often I've lost count.

I use check-raising and I also watch for regular check-raisers - so 30% on a paired board would look so suspicious that any pair, A, suited (that match the board), or overcards (especially Broadway) I may call. A pair I would definitely call and let them bet into me, and it's so easy to trap people when you actually have the trips it's unfunny.

So I agree more with Collin and Katie, less often is better, you don't become as much of a target and get more respect from your check-raises, IMHO.
 
cferdi

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Some great new tips. Although check-raising isn't new to me, I have to admit, that I rarely do it unless I know I have them beat, and love to do it to maniacs! However, although I have bet or Cbet draws, I have never considered check-raising them. Something to consider:rolleyes:

Thanks again:D
 
Phoenix Wright

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Good insight into the Check-Raise play here.

By the way, I am not going to hold my breath for the "Day 31" discussion on "if a tree falls in the forest, yet no one is around, does it make a sound?"

Collin: Is that kind of like if the tree falls in the forest and nobody is around, has it actually made a sound? Have we just uncovered a massive paradox?

Katie: [laughs] I don't know, I never figured out that tree one. You know, I'm still working on that ... so...

Collin: All right, that is going to be the next slide, actually.

Katie: Day 31 -

Collin: Day 31: Sound waves.

Rather than wait for Day 31, I'll just help Katie "figure out that tree one." Most people have heard this philosophical question in pop-culture, but don't really know its history from an academic perspective. As Collin pointed out (Wikipedia also focuses on the physical element here too), it could pertain to sound waves, but this wasn't the original meaning behind the question. This was originally George Berkeley's attempt for a proof that God exists. The argument went along the lines of, "how do we know an object falling truly makes a sound?" The answer is because our senses observe this (hearing the sound is applicable here). If a tree makes a sound when it falls, even if no one is around to witness it, then how is this the case? Berkeley's logic was that then there must be a presence of one who is always there to witness and so this must be God.
http://philosophyforyou.tripod.com/berkeley.html
There are much more convincing arguments for the case that God exists, but this was the original intent behind this question.

By the way, I am a college student pursuing a major in psychology and a minor in philosophy. This "tree one" is a classic that even introductory students learn about fairly early: even in most 101 classes, but naturally only in minimal detail until more advanced levels of study.
 
Katie Dozier

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Good insight into the Check-Raise play here.

By the way, I am not going to hold my breath for the "Day 31" discussion on "if a tree falls in the forest, yet no one is around, does it make a sound?"

Collin: Is that kind of like if the tree falls in the forest and nobody is around, has it actually made a sound? Have we just uncovered a massive paradox?

Katie: [laughs] I don't know, I never figured out that tree one. You know, I'm still working on that ... so...

Collin: All right, that is going to be the next slide, actually.

Katie: Day 31 -

Collin: Day 31: Sound waves.

Rather than wait for Day 31, I'll just help Katie "figure out that tree one." Most people have heard this philosophical question in pop-culture, but don't really know its history from an academic perspective. As Collin pointed out (Wikipedia also focuses on the physical element here too), it could pertain to sound waves, but this wasn't the original meaning behind the question. This was originally George Berkeley's attempt for a proof that God exists. The argument went along the lines of, "how do we know an object falling truly makes a sound?" The answer is because our senses observe this (hearing the sound is applicable here). If a tree makes a sound when it falls, even if no one is around to witness it, then how is this the case? Berkeley's logic was that then there must be a presence of one who is always there to witness and so this must be God.
http://philosophyforyou.tripod.com/berkeley.html
There are much more convincing arguments for the case that God exists, but this was the original intent behind this question.

By the way, I am a college student pursuing a major in psychology and a minor in philosophy. This "tree one" is a classic that even introductory students learn about fairly early: even in most 101 classes, but naturally only in minimal detail until more advanced levels of study.
Interesting, thanks for sharing! :)
 
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jeanpierre1279

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Day 27- The Art of the Check-Raise

This chapter is very interesting because what I called a limp is called a check, and being that way, the raise after a limp would be nothing more than a raise after a made hand, a draw or a good hand value materializes.

Tights players play like this, but the difference comes from the passivity of not placing chips in scenarios where the hand is not made, so that the opponent's fold equity is never achieved and it is difficult to even call against a villain's lead bet.

Very illuminating this topic.
 
Katie Dozier

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This chapter is very interesting because what I called a limp is called a check, and being that way, the raise after a limp would be nothing more than a raise after a made hand, a draw or a good hand value materializes.

Tights players play like this, but the difference comes from the passivity of not placing chips in scenarios where the hand is not made, so that the opponent's fold equity is never achieved and it is difficult to even call against a villain's lead bet.

Very illuminating this topic.
Well said and thank you :)
 
CadoARAJ

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I pretty like a check raise action, specially against agro / C-bet players.
One question, if you make a check raise after floppy with a semi bluff and got called by the villain and the draw does not convert at made hand on turn, how many pot comitted % do you consider to a shove or a call all in at the turn - ask.
 
Collin Moshman

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I pretty like a check raise action, specially against agro / C-bet players.
One question, if you make a check raise after floppy with a semi bluff and got called by the villain and the draw does not convert at made hand on turn, how many pot comitted % do you consider to a shove or a call all in at the turn - ask.


You should usually keep betting in these spots. If the pot is at least almost as big as the effective stack, then it's generally best to shove the turn.
 
Luvart

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Finished Day #27.

It was an interesting reading, I think that I need to incorporate that move much more in my game. I consider it as a powerful move, especially from the big blind when defending vs aggressive players. It requires some work though, and some practice at the tables. As with many of this course's concepts, the check/raise concept applies to cash games too.

Tomorrow with Day #28.
 
Katie Dozier

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Finished Day #27.

It was an interesting reading, I think that I need to incorporate that move much more in my game. I consider it as a powerful move, especially from the big blind when defending vs aggressive players. It requires some work though, and some practice at the tables. As with many of this course's concepts, the check/raise concept applies to cash games too.

Tomorrow with Day #28.



Very glad to hear this and that you’re finding the course to be helpful for cash games as well :)
 
Bozovicdj

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Nice video, lot of good spots shown here.
I would add that 88 hand where we check-raised from SB after a min bet and a call is a pretty standard thing to do, even regardless of what our holding is. Min betting is in my experience a huge sign of weakness, calling such a weak bet is sign of even greater weakness so it can be exploited quite often
 
redboy23

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Hello CCers,

Next to a cold stone bluff, check-raising is one of the plays in poker which gets my blood rushing the most. It definitely is not as fun when you are on the receiving end. A very valid point on setting up a check-raise against an aggressive player or someone with the betting lead when out of position.

I feel like a flat tyre when villain fails to bet out at me holding a very strong hand!

Response to video question:

A very wet board here and if we make a semi-bluff, it is disguised as a protection bet of a strong hand. A knowledge of opponents would be an asset here.

I would make a $300-325 raise in that spot hoping to take the betting lead and buy a free card. I would be very happy to continue betting if a heart hits the turn but otherwise call it down or even fold to any aggression if there is a diamond on the turn .

An exciting hand here!
 
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1nsomn1a

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a check raise against a non thinking player is like a gun without bullets:)
 
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