Is it a mistake to go all in on the flop with top pair?

J

Jayinem

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I've been doing that and getting killed on the river with donks risking all their chips on a draw and they never miss against me. Is it bad to put all your chips in when you are ahead? It's in my head because it just doesn't matter by the end they win. Tonight in cash game $1/$2 I have about $240 in front of me I get ace jack raise $12 preflop get 2 callers I flop a jack. I bet $40 one of them pushes all in with $92, he never showed he claimed he had a set but I don't know if that's true or not. Even if he did I'm going to come out ahead as long as the other one doesn't hit he has us both covered it was $92 to the low stack then another $143 was the rest of mine he calls with ace 5 of spades there's two spades on the flop. He doesn't even get a flush through there's a 4 on the flop the turn is a 3 and the river is a 2 giving him a straight.

Should I have played it differently? It happened to me last Sunday too in a tournament I have Ace King flop a King go all in someone calls with a flush draw all his chips and he had a good stack and so did I and hits on the river risks all his chips if he doesn't hit that card he's gone but of course he does hit. It's almost like they know they're going to hit against me.

I'm not even scratching the surface it's happening every time I play. It makes me hate poker. I really feel like I'm cursed sometimes. My cards never hold up. But maybe it's just a mistake to try to get them to fold and risk all my chips doing it? I don't know anymore. I'm usually have the best cards on an all in but I usually lose. I know there's randomness but you'd think sometimes my cards would hold up without them hitting a flush or straight which isn't supposed to happen that often.

I realize there's always a possibility that I went all in with top pair but my opponent hit two pairs or a set but that's not really what I'm asking. What I'm asking is should I assume my opponents will suck out and hit on the turn or river when I'm ahead and they're behind? Because it seems like they usually do.
 
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Academico

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Exactly right! Reacting emotionally to losses in poker is a telltale sign of a player's maturity level in the game. Experienced players understand that variance and luck are inherent aspects of poker, and they focus on maintaining a rational and analytical mindset, even in the face of adversity. By analyzing their plays objectively and seeking areas for improvement, they continuously refine their skills and become more adept at navigating the complexities of the game.
 
MK_

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.....you shouldn't assume anything, you also shouldn't assume top pair will always hold👍
 
Pokerpoet2

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Depends on a lot of things, like are you prepared to go out on the very first hand? Can you afford to lose the buy-in? Are you are in a Tournament with no Rebuy option?
If the answer is No to any of these questions then it might be best to fold Top pair if there is no other reason to go all-in. I have done this many times in freerolls where it isn't costing me money, and lost with top pair, Just remember it is your choice, and no one is forcing you to do it.
In some games I have called an All-in from some players after the flop and I spike Trips with top pair, They holding a K/Q suited and have a 4 card Straight or Flush draw then complete their hands on the River. It happens! Get used to it.
That's Life, That's Poker!
 
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I really feel like if straights and flushes were taken out of the game I would dominate poker most of the time. Usually that's what I lose to and it's practically always on the very last card the river. It doesn't seem to matter tournaments or cash.

These are live games btw if it matters. Just local bars and cash games at someone's house. But I seem to have the same problems online as well just my cards don't hold up after the flop.

I just don't get it like the guy last night risks $240 some odd dollars on nothing but a flush draw, and doesn't even get what he's chasing he gets a runner runner straight. Yeah it messes with my head. Maybe I just don't have the right temperament for poker. The run I've been on lately with these suck outs make me feel like I'm cursed because I literally can't remember when an opponent was chasing and didn't hit and my cards held up. Hasn't happened in an all in situation where they call lately. They only get two cards to improve their hands it just doesn't make sense how often they do like the flop cards seem to favor me and the river card favors my opponent. The sh*t is supposed to be just random.

To be honest I probably need to be playing with better players and I don't mean that to brag but some of these guys are just donks. However unless it's online this is the only places I have to go I'm in Texas they don't have casinos here.

I'm thinking maybe just don't go all in anymore make normal bets see what happens. The idea that they're risking all their chips so they'll fold doesn't work they have no fear of that I guess. Might even bet small and if they raise me like when a 3rd diamond comes out just fold.
 
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fryderyk

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You always have the same chance of winning as in any other competition.
 
Kenzie 96

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If you are regularly shoving with top pair after the flop, you might back off a bit on demeaning all your opponents. Maybe try to be standing in front of a mirror when you feel compelled to think in those terms would help. Just sayin.
 
john_entony

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I've been doing that and getting killed on the river with donks risking all their chips on a draw and they never miss against me. Is it bad to put all your chips in when you are ahead? It's in my head because it just doesn't matter by the end they win. Tonight in cash game $1/$2 I have about $240 in front of me I get ace jack raise $12 preflop get 2 callers I flop a jack. I bet $40 one of them pushes all in with $92, he never showed he claimed he had a set but I don't know if that's true or not. Even if he did I'm going to come out ahead as long as the other one doesn't hit he has us both covered it was $92 to the low stack then another $143 was the rest of mine he calls with ace 5 of spades there's two spades on the flop. He doesn't even get a flush through there's a 4 on the flop the turn is a 3 and the river is a 2 giving him a straight.

Should I have played it differently? It happened to me last Sunday too in a tournament I have Ace King flop a King go all in someone calls with a flush draw all his chips and he had a good stack and so did I and hits on the river risks all his chips if he doesn't hit that card he's gone but of course he does hit. It's almost like they know they're going to hit against me.

I'm not even scratching the surface it's happening every time I play. It makes me hate poker. I really feel like I'm cursed sometimes. My cards never hold up. But maybe it's just a mistake to try to get them to fold and risk all my chips doing it? I don't know anymore. I'm usually have the best cards on an all in but I usually lose. I know there's randomness but you'd think sometimes my cards would hold up without them hitting a flush or straight which isn't supposed to happen that often.

I realize there's always a possibility that I went all in with top pair but my opponent hit two pairs or a set but that's not really what I'm asking. What I'm asking is should I assume my opponents will suck out and hit on the turn or river when I'm ahead and they're behind? Because it seems like they usually do.
Yes, of course there are unpleasant moments in poker. You can be unlucky 1000 hands in a row, and then 1000 hands in a row you will win. You need to believe in the fairness of the poker rooms and the poker distance. :unsure:
 
amonlima

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This is normal, always try to play where you are best, study to evolve your game, over time, the result is less important, what matters most is making the best decisions.
 
xOneCoolHandx

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First, you didn't tell us what position you were in and the position of your opponents nor did you share any of your reads on your opponents or the starting stack sizes or how many players were at the table. This is important info because if you are 8 handed UTG with 100 BBs then AJo is a fold. You should be folding it from UTG+1 more than half of the time. Second, I would question a raise to $12 in a 1/2 game but it sounds like the games you are playing are very loose, so as long as you are getting some callers, you are playing that part correctly. The opponents position is important because then you can put them on a range of hands. They called and did not 3bet, so what hands would they 3 bet you with? You can start to eliminate those hands. What hands would they throw away to your large preflop raise? You can eliminate those hands as well. That leaves a range of small to medium pairs, suited cards and connected cards in most players ranges. So now analyze the flop texture. The jack came on the flop but what were the other two cards? You also said there were two spades, did you have any spades in your hand? Then you bet into a pot of $38 when you were first to act without examining how the flop would potentially interact with the other players ranges. That bet was WAY too much. While on most boards you are going to have a range and nut advantage, I don't think you did on this hand if it came J little little. This was a good spot to made a bet of somewhere between 25 and 35% of the pot depending on the factors I just talked about. But once the next player jams (or raises) over the top of your bet and the other payer jams (or raises again or really even calls) then you have to know that TPTK is not going to be good in that spot. There are too many combinations that beat you. There are most likely lots of two pair combos and sets out there that you are drawing very thin against and flush and straight draws that you are just breaking even with. This should have been an easy fold once you cbet, get raised and then re-raised. This would be the same if you had aces or kings in the hand. You do not want to call a jam and re-jam with just one pair. Put a little more time in studying and make a few adjustments to your game if you want to win. Just bombing pots when you flop top pair is going to get you broke.
 
andron205

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with a short stack yes is often better than no
 
iceheart888

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the dynamics of the table matter a lot
 
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Top pair is not that strong a hand to play for large stacks.

For smaller stacks, it can be worth to charge the drawing hands.
 
TulasMoreno

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It depends the scenario, if you are in late position, the level of the tournament and more things.
 
pavel1111111

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Let say no... What hand îs going to call you?!.. The one how beats top pair 🤪😄😁.. So better do a big bet then evaluate 🤩
 
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Its a mistake to go all-in on the flop with top pair, if you will only get called by better hands, and make all worse hands fold. However the way, you frame the question, its more of a bad beat rant than a strategy question. Your opponents dont "always" get lucky, and in poker you can play a hand well but still lose it. And you can also play it poorly and still win it. It is after all poker and not chess.

Finally a flushdraw has something like 40% equity on the flop. So its not like, the pot "belongs" to the player with top pair, and that its some sort of a sick bad beat, if the flushdraw gets there. In the hand, you tell about, A5 of spades is definitely not supposed to fold with 3-way action. So he did nothing wrong at all, and he was just as entitled to win the pot, as you were. In fact if the short stacked player did have a set, as he claimed, then you were the one getting it in with bad odds, since you were then drawing dead in the main pot and only slightly ahead in the side pot.

And maybe this hand could actually have been played better. It seems like, you bet the full size of the pot on the flop, and that is generally far to much especially multiway. If you bet smaller, you could perhaps consider folding to heavy action behind you. But when you bet 40 into a pot of 36 with less than 200 left behind, and someone sitting with less than 100, you are kind of painting yourself into a corner and getting committed to the pot, before you have even seen, how they react to your C-bet.

Its almost like, you flopped top pair and want them to fold, so that you dont get drawn out on. But top pair on the flop is usually a value hand, which mean, the goal of betting is to get worse hands to continue. And those hands will always have some equity, so sometimes you will get drawn out on. Which is ok and part of the game. This whole thread points to a tilt issue, so I suggest you to take a break and spend some time working on both the mental and technical side of your game. Many people recommend Jared Tendler "The mental game of poker".
 
dzsire

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In response to the question in the title: on flop going all-in with top pair is a brave thing. There are two more cards with which a 'simple' pair can face many combinations.
Of course, you have to show strength with the top pair, but an all-in can feel like a bluff and lot of player calls even with their weaker hand (especially if you have few chips). Rather a more powerful raise, the all-in is often a call to waltz.
 
IPlayToWin

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Depends on what situation, and what position you are, and how much equity you got on your preflop cards.
 
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Good question.......the real answer is after the hand because sometime you win big and other time you win nothing and loose too.....depend the table you play you have to watch your table before
 
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There are several things:
- Variance: you obviously are gonna lose some of those hands.
- Bias: you are probably only remembering bad beats and those times you got unlucky, forgetting that you've probably gotten lucky quite a few times too.
- All-in with top pair: you are clearly overplaying top pair. Why go All-in with a hand that is not that strong after all? Try to keep the pot small.
 
Sintubai

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Always depends the situation, but if your top pair is 7,8,9, i think its not a good action goes all in.. the kicker is important too.. the good side is sometimes you will find flushdraws, Straightdraws, over cards, second pairs.. 30/40% generally im all in with top pairs
 
thedarkman

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That is a ridiculous question without some context. you have black KK, the flop is 789 hearts and there are three players behind you. What is your next move?
 
Gallarado777

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sometimes you will lose even with a top pair if you go all-in and be very upset if you don't have that feeling, you can go all-in as well as your hands will pay you only the weaker arms will be thrown away unless they are fish that are willing to pay you with any hand
 
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top pair or not if you jam all-in pre flop its a 50 50 chance. nothing is guaranteed in poker
 
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I really feel like if straights and flushes were taken out of the game I would dominate poker most of the time. Usually that's what I lose to and it's practically always on the very last card the river. It doesn't seem to matter tournaments or cash.

These are live games btw if it matters. Just local bars and cash games at someone's house. But I seem to have the same problems online as well just my cards don't hold up after the flop.

I just don't get it like the guy last night risks $240 some odd dollars on nothing but a flush draw, and doesn't even get what he's chasing he gets a runner runner straight. Yeah it messes with my head. Maybe I just don't have the right temperament for poker. The run I've been on lately with these suck outs make me feel like I'm cursed because I literally can't remember when an opponent was chasing and didn't hit and my cards held up. Hasn't happened in an all in situation where they call lately. They only get two cards to improve their hands it just doesn't make sense how often they do like the flop cards seem to favor me and the river card favors my opponent. The sh*t is supposed to be just random.

To be honest I probably need to be playing with better players and I don't mean that to brag but some of these guys are just donks. However unless it's online this is the only places I have to go I'm in Texas they don't have casinos here.

I'm thinking maybe just don't go all in anymore make normal bets see what happens. The idea that they're risking all their chips so they'll fold doesn't work they have no fear of that I guess. Might even bet small and if they raise me like when a 3rd diamond comes out just fold.
If you can't beat poor players, you will never beat good players. Unfortunately we all have runs of bad luck. Just keep studying and playing.
 
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