AT: Blegh.

ChuckTs

ChuckTs

Legend
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Total posts
13,642
Stars $10 180-seater, just before break:

The table's fairly tight (22/5) and I decide to take a stab at the blinds.
Caller is tight/passive (21/0), which for whatever reason I did not take into account.
I'd been recently moved to the table, and hadn't played too many hands. I'd been playing fairly LAP preflop though - calling raises with suited connectors and limping with small hands alot.

pokerstars Game #7123315711: Tournament #36399801, $10+$1 Hold'em No Limit - Level IV (50/100) - 2006/11/21 - 23:56:33 (ET)
Table '36399801 19' 9-max Seat #3 is the button
Seat 1: TJ2KP6 (2005 in chips)
Seat 2: IglooKing (1260 in chips)
Seat 3: freedomkaf (1765 in chips)
Seat 4: PretzelMania (2270 in chips)
Seat 5: ephewetoo (1385 in chips)
Seat 6: zoe1o1 (1575 in chips)
Seat 7: Shootfor2 (1310 in chips)
Seat 8: cdnstriker (1995 in chips)
Seat 9: ChuckTs (2970 in chips)
PretzelMania: posts small blind 50
ephewetoo: posts big blind 100
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to ChuckTs [Ts Ad]
zoe1o1: folds
Shootfor2: folds
cdnstriker: folds
ChuckTs: raises 200 to 300
TJ2KP6: folds
IglooKing: folds
freedomkaf: folds
PretzelMania: calls 250
ephewetoo: folds
*** FLOP *** [Ah 4c 9h]
PretzelMania: bets 100
ChuckTs: raises 300 to 400
PretzelMania: calls 300
*** TURN *** [Ah 4c 9h] [9c]
PretzelMania: checks
ChuckTs: bets 700
PretzelMania: calls 700
*** RIVER *** [Ah 4c 9h 9c] [6d]
PretzelMania: checks
ChuckTs: bets 500
PretzelMania: calls 500

yuckie, aint it?

thoughts?
 
Bombjack

Bombjack

Legend
Joined
Jul 6, 2006
Total posts
2,389
Raise more on the flop... you're raising 300 in a pot of 900? How about 2/3 pot. Now that you've only mini-raised him, you haven't narrowed his range much. But the fact he's calling should start bells ringing... gap concept etc and the fact that he's calling OOP. You have to give them credit for being a good player. There are no draws on except the heart flush, so he probably has that or an Ace.

On the turn it's difficult to say how much to bet. On the one hand you're hoping he's on a flush draw so you want to give him the wrong odds, but on the other, he may have you beaten with AJ / AQ or even AK. You want to try to keep the pot quite small because your hand is pretty weak. I would avoid checking, because if you do, you might face a large bet on the river and face a hard decision. I'd bet about 1/3 pot.

Definitely check the river. Why are you betting here?
 
F Paulsson

F Paulsson

euro love
Joined
Aug 24, 2005
Total posts
5,799
Got any postflop reads on him?

For shits and giggles, pretend this was a limit hand, and that every bet and raise was within the limit structure. I.e. the betting went raise/call - bet/raise/call - check/bet/call - check/bet/call. I would have played this hand the same every time, and I would have had a serious problem with anyone checking behind on the river. So if the river is an obvious check, I'd be interested in learning more about the mechanics of no-limit that makes the move so different.
 
Bombjack

Bombjack

Legend
Joined
Jul 6, 2006
Total posts
2,389
FP - In a nutshell it's because he's only calling, or maybe raising you, if you're beaten. It's very rare that he'll call a sizeable bet on the flop and turn here without at least top pair with good kicker, especially since you raised and are betting / raising with an Ace on the board. If he was on a heart draw then he's going to fold anyway. The only thing you beat that a good player might have called you down with is Ace-8, but then that's probably going in the muck pre-flop.

In Limit, you might call someone down with second pair, or top pair / no kicker. But because bet sizes increase exponentially on each street in NL, it's going to be more expensive and you need a much better hand to call bets on the flop and turn.

It's a golden rule of NLHE to check medium strength hands on the river. The only reason Chuck should bet here on the river is if he has a very strong hand and his opponent is likely to be second best (little risk of the check-raise), or he's very weak and thinks he can only win it with a steal.
 
Dorkus Malorkus

Dorkus Malorkus

HELLO INTERNET
Joined
Jul 12, 2005
Total posts
12,422
Villain is relatively tight/passive, so I think while we can largely discount the probability of him having a 9 we have to be fearful of hands which many would repop preflop, namely AK-AQ (and AJ).

I feel like I'm being overly weak-passive by saying raise more on the flop and give up if called. If you feel villain will check it down after the flop raise (he's passive preflop but what's he like post?) even with AK-AJ though, I think this is the best course of action, and you can probably still call a small river bet.

Once he calls the flop raise though, I can't see what you're beating. A TPP folds Ax and hands like KhQh to a MP preflop raise OOP, surely? Possibly he has QQ-TT, but is he calling the (albeit small) flop raise with these hands?

The river bet is horrible because very few hands we're ahead of call (if we can assert that the chances of Ax calling preflop are small), and we absolutely hate facing a check-push. In limit, value bets can be thinner on the river because (a) people have been more likely to have hung around with draws and generally weaker hands, (b) people will call with weak hands because "it's only one more bet and he might be bluffing" and (c) if we're check-raised, we only stand to lose one more bet by calling.

In a nutshell, preflop fine, raise more on flop, maybe check behind on turn but the bet is certainly reasonable, definitely check behind on the river (and if you are going to bet I think you have to push).
 
Last edited:
F Paulsson

F Paulsson

euro love
Joined
Aug 24, 2005
Total posts
5,799
(I don't like golden rules.)

We're up against a passive player apparently, which works both ways here. It's a blessing because he's unlikely to checkraise the river. It's a curse because he may have AK and is simply calling down. Still, AK has to be severely discounted since even the most passive of monkeys tend to raise at some point with it.

I don't necessarily agree that we're up against a good player, by the way. I know that Chuck's stats say 21/0 (which doesn't seem good) but we don't know over how many hands. If we're called when we bet the river, I'll expect to see AJ a lot of the time, AQ some of the time, and AT/A8/A7/A6/A5 etc. most of the time. Especially if Chuck has been playing aggressively lately.

Why? Because there are more hands below AT than there are above AT, and I don't see a relatively unknown player folding either kind anywhere in this hand to these bets and raises. I'm convinced we'll lose this hand a lot, I'm just not convinced that we'll lose it more than 50% of the time (or 45%, to please Mr. Sklansky).
 
Bombjack

Bombjack

Legend
Joined
Jul 6, 2006
Total posts
2,389
We beat 7: A8, A7, A6, A5, A4, A3, A2. Draw with AT. Lose to 4: AK, AQ, AJ, A9. Much less likely he's calling with A2-A5... maybe if they're suited, but then it comes to a read on how bad this player is. I always give players credit for being good TAG players until proven otherwise, so realistically we're looking at AK-AJ. You can say "well maybe he's a donk", but I don't think that should be the basis of our decisions. Chuck's recently moved to the table so doesn't have a great read, and he's played passively so far, so his opponents should give him some credit.

I'd expect him to have AJ, or possibly AQ.
 
Last edited:
F Paulsson

F Paulsson

euro love
Joined
Aug 24, 2005
Total posts
5,799
If you're discounting A2-A5, how much do you also discount AK/AQ and A9 given preflop action? I agree that AJ is the most likely hand, but it doesn't alone make up 50% of his possible holdings.

I wouldn't say that I base decisions on "maybe he's a donk" but I do tend to treat unknowns as average; and the average player calls too much. Also, the fact that he has played passively so far (the only read we have) works to our advantage should we decide to bet. Against passive players, we're much less likely to be checkraised (and when we are, we can hopefully lay down our hand easily).

As a sidenote, I think it would have been better if the action had been cut after Chuck bet the river; knowing that he just called is probably bad given that we know that he didn't checkraise.

Now, because I'm - according to Dorkus - a nit, I'll do this:

Depending on how you tweak the numbers of probability (I'm basing this off of your read) we should at least find that the decision is relatively close. I'm not sure I can agree with the riverbet being "horrible." Possibly -EV, but not terribly so. Or are my numbers completely off? If we think our villain is more loose than this (I'd argue a typical player is, but that's up for discussion) the close decision swings from a check to a bet, but only narrowly so. Personally, I feel that even for a passive player the likelyhood of AK, for instance, ought to be a lot lower than what I've represented here.
 

Attachments

  • AT.JPG
    AT.JPG
    12.3 KB · Views: 29
Bombjack

Bombjack

Legend
Joined
Jul 6, 2006
Total posts
2,389
Yep, we now know he's not slowplaying a monster hand, although that is a possibility if we hadn't seen his call on the river. But we wouldn't worry too much about that in a tournament situation like this where the pot is large compared to the stacks, and you need to take any chance to accumulate chips.

FP - in your table, you've multiplied the "Number" by the "Likely" column, but the only reason why A9 is unlikely is because there are 2 on the board so there are less combinations your opponent could hold, which is taken into account in the Number column already. Estimating the likelihood of each combination is pretty subjective but I'd say overall it's considerably more likely he holding A9-AK than A2-A8. There's also the off-chance he's holding TT-KK which you could take into account for the Win scenario. But just from experience I'd say it's very likely you're behind here.

If you ARE going to bet the river, you might as well put your opponent all-in. He's only got about 900 left and the pot is about 2800. I can't really see him folding but there's a chance he might fold AJ / AT. Checking and saving yourself some chips remains best though. You can't win every hand, and if you're beat you should try to minimise the amount you put in.
 
F Paulsson

F Paulsson

euro love
Joined
Aug 24, 2005
Total posts
5,799
No, the reason I discount A9 so heavily - even more so than just because it's unlikely combinatorically - is because it seems highly strange (even for a passive player) that he wouldn't have played back at us at some point. Of course, had I not known that he only called the river I would probably have increased that likelyhood somewhat.

Actually, I did a piss-poor job of explaining those tables: The "likelyhood" is just a multiplier. Here, I'm saying that he's 10 times more likely to be holding AJ than A9, and that it's twice as likely that he's holding AJ as compared to AK (given the action). That multiplier is only read-dependent, and has nothing to do with combinatorics. I.e., if his hand consisted of one ace, and one other random card equally distributed, each multiplier would be 1.

I do agree with putting him all in, though, if we're going to bet. Any ace-rag that he calls 500 with, he will also call 900 with, and he maybe - just MAYBE - folds AT.
 
F Paulsson

F Paulsson

euro love
Joined
Aug 24, 2005
Total posts
5,799
By the way, I wish I had saved the spreadsheet table so I could tweak the numbers some more, but since I was lazy I simply put it into the document I was working on, which meant that I had to then remove it. :( I think the recipients of the Platform Review Report- Overview and Summary in Beijing would have been curious about what those red and green fields were doing in there. ;)
 
ChuckTs

ChuckTs

Legend
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Total posts
13,642
Turns out he had AJ fyi.

I really didn't like my play this hand. I just wasn't paying attention, and was generally lost during the hand. Maybe I was distracted at the time (damn minesweeper)
 
Dorkus Malorkus

Dorkus Malorkus

HELLO INTERNET
Joined
Jul 12, 2005
Total posts
12,422
Im not sure to what extent this applies in this example because we have villain outchipped, but if the stacks are switched we cant push even if we think we are say 55% against his calling range simply because of the dynamics of chip values in tournaments (that is the ~1k you lose if you push, villain calls and you are beaten is worth significantly more in $EV terms than the 1k you gain if you push, villain calls, and you win).

...and tbh Chuck, I didn't want to post this explicitly earlier for fear of affecting other responses, but it was obvious from the tone of your post that you lost the hand, and that combined with posting the last action (villain calling river) you made villain's hand range pretty blatantly AK-AJ. For less results oriented responses (I have to admit to probably being slightly guilty of it myself here), try and make emotionless posts and leave out any irrelevant info (it doesn't really matter what villain did after your river bet when analyzing this hand).

That said, this has been a pretty interesting hand to try and break down anyway. :)
 
Last edited:
Top