All In With Pocket Pairs

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coolcukes

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Hi, I need some guidance on this. It seems to be the norm to go all in in early stages of a MTT tourney from any position with pocket pairs less than pocket 9s. Personally I cant do it, there is too much risk. Is it considered playing smart to bet all in with a small pocket pair in a MTT tourney? Does that pesky thing "Pot odds" say play agressive? What's the rule for playing a small pocket pair in early stages of a MTT Tourney?
 
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ph_il

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general rule for pairs when stacks are deep: see a flop as cheaply as possible, try to hit a set, and stack off majority of the time. obviously some exceptions, depending on situation.

is it a smart play to go all-in with small pairs in an mtt? it would depend on the level of the mtt and your stack size.

if it's at the start and everyone has 100 bbs and you jam utg to win the pot of 1.5 bbs, then you're risking 100 bbs for a 1.5% increase. not only that, but if you're called and you have 44, then a lot of other pairs dominate you or you're in a flip situation for your mtt life. against decent players that might call off with 1010+, ak o/s, you're losing 31% of the time.

if it's in the later stages and/or you have less big blinds, then jamming might be a more favorable option. in the same scenario, lets say you have 8 bbs and you jam 33 utg. assuming no antes, you're risking 8 bbs to win 1.5 bbs for a ~19% chip increase. plus, your equity to win increases even more because players are going to call you off much wider. lets say big stack calls of with 50% of hands, then you're winning and doubling up ~50% of the time.

the difference is, is the risk worth the reward? risking your mtt life for 1.5% increase seems silly, especially since you have so much play ability with 100 bbs. at the same time risking an 8 bb mtt life for a 19% chip increase is much more worth it as you don't have as many options.

then there is playing pairs with short-middle stacks, like 15-35 bbs. and what you should do in different scenarios like what pairs you should just open fold from early position with 15-20 bbs, what pairs you can/should open from early position, what pairs you should call a raise with, 3bet with, or even 3bet jam with, etc. but these are more situational and are better answered with more information.
 
123cards321

123cards321

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MTT

Depends a lot on buyin, stack, stage of the MTT, strategy and opponents in the table.

There will never be a guide that will be aplicable to all situations it really depends on a lot of factors. But online and generally in the low-mid stakes you would see this play a lot with any stack size and it is very exploitable, however you have to be carefull because in this stakes you might see some crazy open shoves for 100bs thinking it almost always is a low pocket pair and end up playing against AA, KK, AKs so be really carefull to have a good read on your opponent before making a call based on your read
 
123cards321

123cards321

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Forgot to answer the % part. Pocket pairs have 54% against non suited over cards so they are ahead by shoving preflop and still have chance of a set so they have a lot of value as shoves but need to be used carefully
 
M

Mahdi

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Recently I played in the MTT and was in a bb with pocket JJ, had around 20bbs, 5-6 peoples limped and I shoved it all-in, got called by 94o and he caught 2 pairs and eliminated me from the tournament. My point is people do a dumb staff and sometimes getting rewarded for that, so you can do it and expect to call and double up, or you may be simply eliminated by some bad hand(or better hand), where you had so many bbs to play with and do it smart way. So no need to shove early, not a good idea to put your chips at a chance
 
LFC_yllnwa

LFC_yllnwa

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No, this is not a normal situation unfortunately. But a lot of players don't understand this... In the early stages of the tournament, a small pocket pair, with very low blinds, is not a super hand. I think the best solution is to play carefully and not aggressively. You can't bet 10bet with a pocket pair... you'll be alone at the table. If you bet less, 4-7 bet, there is no problem for the fish to see the flop with a picture or another hand of the same suit.. Unfortunately, in this situation, I think patience is necessary. No aggression with a small couple. I think.
 
tauri103

tauri103

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in general it is advisable to invest as little chips as possible preflop to see the flop and find your set because you are at a disadvantage against a better hand than yours. you can afford to all-in with a small pair when you're short stacked.
 
Hoyt88Slayer

Hoyt88Slayer

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Oh yes baby!

Pockets are what I live for in poker, any jj or bet really get my blood flowing. I can’t even hide it so just push, ik I can lose, but life’s about taking chances, and so is poker
 
Andrei Korolev

Andrei Korolev

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With small pairs, play in a late position if there is no all-in...
 
Q

Qrise

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I will tell my strategy. I not go all-in with such pairs, both early and late. I try to just play them, catch a set, it's very profitable, and I rarely lose at the same time
 
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