Playing the Small Blind (Day 19 Course Discussion)

Debi

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I was so excited to see this Playing the Small Blind lesson! It is such a tough position to play from.

If you have not yet read Day 19 and watched the video for Day 19 - take a few minutes now to do that and then come back here to discuss it:

Playing the Small Blind

I have probably been folding too wide from the small blind. I love it when both Collin and Katie are in the videos - they are great together! Let's talk about playing the small blind and ask Katie and Collin some questions about it.

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Polytarp

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A very clear presentation where some of the guidance provided can be tested very quickly.

In the poker stars $2.75 games, if I have the smallest stack and in the small blind, should I play differently if the prize is $5.50 or if the prize is a $109 ticket? Of the three opportunities I had I only won once..and they were not easy games.
 
NWPatriot

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Thanks Collin/Katie.

The SB can be tricky, and you have done a good job clarifying some of the idiosyncrasies of SB play.

I do have a question that probably should have been asked earlier in the course, but now seems a good a time as any other. I am getting a little confused about what you consider "showdown value" and there appears to be some inconsistancy around applying the term. I will try to be clear here, and maybe you can provide some clarification that will help me (and others i hope).

  • In general I have not really considered high cards as having "showdown value" because I think a high card will only win at showdown ~5% of the time against a single player. In a multi-way pot it will probably never win. This means that my interpretation of "showdown value" requires a pair or better (pair+).
  • In general, many of the recommendations in the course are:
    • Bet with "no showdown" value - keep the pressure on as it is our only way to win.
    • Check with "showdown" value - we have a chance to win without investing
    • Bet with the best hand - get value when our hand is likely best (yet this means now we are betting with "showdown" value.
Is this perception of what you are teaching accurate or am i missing it? If so, there are multiple versions of showdown value (high card only, mediocre pair+, strong hands of 2 pr+). How do you differentiate the two options of checking with showdown value or betting the best hand?

I hope this was clear and made sense. Thanks.
 
Collin Moshman

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A very clear presentation where some of the guidance provided can be tested very quickly.

In the Poker Stars $2.75 games, if I have the smallest stack and in the small blind, should I play differently if the prize is $5.50 or if the prize is a $109 ticket? Of the three opportunities I had I only won once..and they were not easy games.

Generally not unless it's a satellite in which case you'll often be correct to play much tighter nearing the money.
 
Collin Moshman

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Thanks Collin/Katie.

The SB can be tricky, and you have done a good job clarifying some of the idiosyncrasies of SB play.

I do have a question that probably should have been asked earlier in the course, but now seems a good a time as any other. I am getting a little confused about what you consider "showdown value" and there appears to be some inconsistancy around applying the term. I will try to be clear here, and maybe you can provide some clarification that will help me (and others i hope).
  • In general I have not really considered high cards as having "showdown value" because I think a high card will only win at showdown ~5% of the time against a single player. In a multi-way pot it will probably never win. This means that my interpretation of "showdown value" requires a pair or better (pair+).
  • In general, many of the recommendations in the course are:
    • Bet with "no showdown" value - keep the pressure on as it is our only way to win.
    • Check with "showdown" value - we have a chance to win without investing
    • Bet with the best hand - get value when our hand is likely best (yet this means now we are betting with "showdown" value.
Is this perception of what you are teaching accurate or am i missing it? If so, there are multiple versions of showdown value (high card only, mediocre pair+, strong hands of 2 pr+). How do you differentiate the two options of checking with showdown value or betting the best hand?

I hope this was clear and made sense. Thanks.

Great question NW. It really just depends on context. For example:

In a limped blind-vs-blind pot, both players check down to the river. Final board is: QQ 22 3. You have J6. Your jack-high has showdown value because there's a good chance it's the best hand with such weak action.

Whereas in a situation where ranges are much strong, like versus a tight player who's been betting the whole way on Q-high flop, a hand like JJ might have almost no showdown value.

Ask yourself: Is there a real chance that my hand will be best at showdown given the action?
 
CadoARAJ

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I was so excited to see this Playing the Small Blind lesson! It is such a tough position to play from.

If you have not yet read Day 19 and watched the video for Day 19 - take a few minutes now to do that and then come back here to discuss it:

Playing the Small Blind

I have probably been folding too wide from the small blind. I love it when both Collin and Katie are in the videos - they are great together! Let's talk about playing the small blind and ask Katie and Collin some questions about it.

375a9588b84aa0e03addb3411468583c.png

9bae48e8b0b6064ee1698bd2e01bd23b.png

First of all, I want to congrat Katie and Collin for the excelent course so far. Very great lessons so far at day 19. Collin has a voice of college professor and it is very understandeble, including for foreign players that do not have english as its native language.
I would sugest to Katie, at eventual other following videos, to speak a little more slow, to allow better understanding for not english native listeners. Her voice is great, but she has a high intensity at her speech, I think she is hiperative and very inteligent very over the normal people that can put us in a brainstorm. Just a positive sugestion. Please desconsider if no one had the same dificulty.

My question to Katie and Collin is how they act at the BB facing a SB shoving very close the MTT/SNG bubble blows. They act normal following the Nash chart or, at this point, when we are medium stack and a loosing big pot can risk our ITM - ask.
Tks for the support and for this excelent free course oportunirty.
 
Katie Dozier

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First of all, I want to congrat Katie and Collin for the excelent course so far. Very great lessons so far at day 19. Collin has a voice of college professor and it is very understandeble, including for foreign players that do not have english as its native language.
I would sugest to Katie, at eventual other following videos, to speak a little more slow, to allow better understanding for not english native listeners. Her voice is great, but she has a high intensity at her speech, I think she is hiperative and very inteligent very over the normal people that can put us in a brainstorm. Just a positive sugestion. Please desconsider if no one had the same dificulty.

My question to Katie and Collin is how they act at the BB facing a SB shoving very close the MTT/SNG bubble blows. They act normal following the Nash chart or, at this point, when we are medium stack and a loosing big pot can risk our ITM - ask.
Tks for the support and for this excelent free course oportunirty.


So glad to hear that you’re enjoying the course and thanks for your suggestion which I’ll take into account on any future videos I make :)

In situation you describe, I will follow Nash (taking ICM into account of course), but I will play explotively when the situation calls for it. If I feel the SB is shoving a lot narrower than they should, I will call a bit tighter. Very few people actually shove wider than they should in the small blind, but if I fee the player in the SB is doing this then I will also widen my calling range.

Kudos to you for doing this course in a language different from your native one, that is very impressive! :)
 
CadoARAJ

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So glad to hear that you’re enjoying the course and thanks for your suggestion which I’ll take into account on any future videos I make :)

In situation you describe, I will follow Nash (taking ICM into account of course), but I will play explotively when the situation calls for it. If I feel the SB is shoving a lot narrower than they should, I will call a bit tighter. Very few people actually shove wider than they should in the small blind, but if I fee the player in the SB is doing this then I will also widen my calling range.

Kudos to you for doing this course in a language different from your native one, that is very impressive! :)

Ty very much for your insta call answer. So impressive as your course. Grade A+ for you two. Have a nice weekend.
 
PsychoVas

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In my experience, completing the blind is proven to be a leak. Probably that is because I tend to check-call too much after flop. To be honest I would have mucked the 64o and let Babe take it, instead trying to squeeze some pork cho(i)ps from the poor creature.
 
cferdi

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Thanks Collin/Katie.

The SB can be tricky, and you have done a good job clarifying some of the idiosyncrasies of SB play.

I do have a question that probably should have been asked earlier in the course, but now seems a good a time as any other. I am getting a little confused about what you consider "showdown value" and there appears to be some inconsistancy around applying the term. I will try to be clear here, and maybe you can provide some clarification that will help me (and others i hope).
  • In general I have not really considered high cards as having "showdown value" because I think a high card will only win at showdown ~5% of the time against a single player. In a multi-way pot it will probably never win. This means that my interpretation of "showdown value" requires a pair or better (pair+).
  • In general, many of the recommendations in the course are:
    • Bet with "no showdown" value - keep the pressure on as it is our only way to win.
    • Check with "showdown" value - we have a chance to win without investing
    • Bet with the best hand - get value when our hand is likely best (yet this means now we are betting with "showdown" value.
Is this perception of what you are teaching accurate or am i missing it? If so, there are multiple versions of showdown value (high card only, mediocre pair+, strong hands of 2 pr+). How do you differentiate the two options of checking with showdown value or betting the best hand?

I hope this was clear and made sense. Thanks.


I completely understand your question as I have also struggled with it. I am beginning to think that:

a) if you truly believe you have the best hand, then you bet for value (i.e., you have a set, for example).
b) showdown value (I think) means that you 'probably' have the best hand, but are not sure/could be wrong, but the hand is good enough to be seen at showdown (you have K high on a board that no one has shown much interest in and feel that your opponent has probably missed the board or has a lower high card and you feel like you might have the best hand - or you have hit a low pair in similar circumstances)

Of course, someone will correct me, hopefully, if I am wrong - as I am also struggling a little with this concept.

Today's lesson though, was Terrific! I rarely see much about how to deal with the blinds, so I found it refreshing to have the topic explained - thank you!
 
Katie Dozier

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I completely understand your question as I have also struggled with it. I am beginning to think that:

a) if you truly believe you have the best hand, then you bet for value (i.e., you have a set, for example).
b) showdown value (I think) means that you 'probably' have the best hand, but are not sure/could be wrong, but the hand is good enough to be seen at showdown (you have K high on a board that no one has shown much interest in and feel that your opponent has probably missed the board or has a lower high card and you feel like you might have the best hand - or you have hit a low pair in similar circumstances)

Of course, someone will correct me, hopefully, if I am wrong - as I am also struggling a little with this concept.

Today's lesson though, was Terrific! I rarely see much about how to deal with the blinds, so I found it refreshing to have the topic explained - thank you!


Your logic sounds spot on to me and thank you for your kind words! :)
 
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Day 19 - Playing the Small Blind

Good chapter of studies and the tips surprised me because in other faster articles from other sites it is always said that both the big blind and the small blind have to be protected and played because chips are necessarily lost and would only cost to complete them for the action.

But in practice I always thought that something was wrong because it is not only the cost of completing the chips but the "getting involved with the hand", with raises and checks, because the player will not fold any play.

So, seeing that we are really at a disadvantage post-flop when we are raised early, we should play tight.

When we play against bottoms and big blinds we increase the range, like as a spin and go game.

Good Luck and lets movie foward :jd4::cool::cool:
 
Phoenix Wright

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Another worthwhile lesson learned here; playing the SB is a unique position that surely required its own day for this course.
 
Katie Dozier

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Good chapter of studies and the tips surprised me because in other faster articles from other sites it is always said that both the big blind and the small blind have to be protected and played because chips are necessarily lost and would only cost to complete them for the action.

But in practice I always thought that something was wrong because it is not only the cost of completing the chips but the "getting involved with the hand", with raises and checks, because the player will not fold any play.

So, seeing that we are really at a disadvantage post-flop when we are raised early, we should play tight.

When we play against bottoms and big blinds we increase the range, like as a spin and go game.

Good Luck and lets movie foward :jd4::cool::cool:
This is an excellent summary on the progression of logic when it comes to playing hand from the small blind; well done :)
Another worthwhile lesson learned here; playing the SB is a unique position that surely required its own day for this course.
So gad you enjoyed it, thanks!
 
Luvart

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Finished Day #19.

It's the toughest positon to play, especially for inexperienced players.

I think that in cash games the SB becomes even more tougher to play.

During the past I've experimented a lot with various strategies (mostly applied to cash games) at the micros. To better understand the proper SB play and correct some mistakes, it's very important to study thouroughly you HUD, study the stats, and spend a really huge amount of time on this.

Break for the weekend and back on Monday with Day #20.
 
redboy23

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I am happy about getting some guidelines for the small blind, especially opening up my range. Normally I do not complete many blinds with low and medium connected cards. So I will be having some fun and see how that works out. There days, it is quite the norm for cut-off and high jack to steal blinds and big blind to defend with a re-raise. So very choppy waters to navigate. On thing is sure, I need to up my aggression.

Response to video question:

Holding 64o, I would complete the blinds with my connected cards. (I would have folded this before reading this chapter :) ) If there is aggression pre-flop, I would fold.

After hitting that nice open ended straight draw, I would bet about half the pot to begin building a nice prize pool. Of course, I hope villain thinks I hit a King and just fold this.

On the turn, I would go into bluff mode and bet full pot. If hero completes, I would give up on the hand if no straight hits on the river.

A real tough but instructional hand!
 
Edu1

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SB position is limp/check/fold most of the time, but if you adjust you 3bet range againt some players, them will fold a lot. this strategy works especially against players who opens in middle position with a average stack
 
freddydr87

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In MTT i like to have a mixed strategy from the SB betweeng limping and raising,is he bb is a competed player iff it is a maniac or a tigh week player and go to the explotative side to exploid they tent to raise a lot n one case and fold a lot in the other.
In cash i dont like to have a limp strategy i just fold or raise in the SB, you dont wanth to play so manny hand week hand when there is a rake involved.
 
zam220

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A very useful lesson, playing with SB is very important! This is my weakness and I will try to fix it!
 
Glaucopone

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How to know?

In the minute 12:23 seconds in the example of the hand Qc6s hits the flop Kc9c9s, there was a check call, 6s on the turn also check call and the river hits Qs, perfect ... but how do you know if the villain doesn't have K or 9? And if the villain bet on the Flop, bet on the Turn, on the online, what is the sign that he does not have the K or 9 and continue to pay as was given in the example?
 
Collin Moshman

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In the minute 12:23 seconds in the example of the hand Qc6s hits the flop Kc9c9s, there was a check call, 6s on the turn also check call and the river hits Qs, perfect ... but how do you know if the villain doesn't have K or 9? And if the villain bet on the Flop, bet on the Turn, on the online, what is the sign that he does not have the K or 9 and continue to pay as was given in the example?


He could definitely have a king or a 9, but keep in mind that we don't need the best hand all the time. Sometimes he's bluffing or semi-bluffing, and this makes it profitable to call him because we're also getting good pot odds.

Remember, just play the best you can against your opponents' ranges, and don't worry if sometimes they show you a stronger hand than you're expecting!
 
shanest

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I tend to limp in with my whole range. Has really worked well for me. It is such an important position to get right
 
GRIN281289

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This is the most difficult position to play !! From the SB position, I rarely play, but it all depends on the player who is sitting behind me and how lucky I am that day :)
 
Collin Moshman

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I tend to limp in with my whole range. Has really worked well for me. It is such an important position to get right


This is a good/reasonable strategy at most stack depths. I would definitely shove for the most part under 15bb effective stack, and put in small raises sometimes against weaker or tighter opponents. But otherwise, primarily limping the small blind is solid :)
 
johnnylawford

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How do you feel about all-in ranges from the small blind? It seems like when you're playing a short stack game you should have a particularly wide all-in range when you're under 15bb. This is particularly important in combination with the ICM section if you can apply pressure on a shorter stack close to the bubble.
 
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