Sunday, August 2, 2009

Good laydown?

Button is a solid regular. 19/11/1.0 @ 200+ hands... I'm STILL wondering about this hand!

Full Tilt Pot-Limit Hold'em, $0.25 BB (8 handed) - Full-Tilt Converter Tool from

SB ($24)
BB ($51.60)
UTG ($50)
UTG+1 ($12.25)
MP1 ($20)
Hero (MP2) ($43.74)
CO ($25.06)
Button ($47.70)

Preflop: Hero is MP2 with Ac, 6c
4 folds, Hero bets $0.75, 1 fold, Button calls $0.65, SB calls $0.50

Flop: ($2.25) 7h, 8d, 5s (3 players)
Button bets $1.50, 1 fold, Hero calls $1.50
His lead of 2/3 pot is pretty standard. He usually checks if he misses and bets if has something.

Turn: ($5.25) 8c (2 players)
Button checks, Hero checks
Suspicious that he "gives up" on the turn. However, it pairs the board putting a full house out there.

River: ($5.25) 9d (2 players)
Button bets $4, Hero raises to $10, Button raises to $35.25, Hero folds
I hit my open-ended straight but is it good enough? One way to find out. When he bets out for $4 after checking the turn, I don't think he wants me to get a free showdown. He is value betting. Here is the problem with the hand: I raise up with the (essentially) nut straight (I don't think he's calling, out of position, with JT and betting the flop on an inside draw). I get killed with an immediate HUGE overraise.

I have to assume he hit a set of 5's, 7's [gulp] quad 8's or 87 / 98 suited connectors. He is limp / calling all of those combinations, which have my 9 high straight crushed. Additionally, he's not putting his stack at risk unless he has something for sure. The only thing I think I'm beating here is a bluff (good game him), or splitting a pocket pair of 6's (less likely since I hold a 6 and he bet out on the flop). My laydown decision is made by the thought that there are a TON of hands that beat me here - any set turned full or [less likely] JT.

Total pot: $25.25 | Rake: $1.26

Button didn't show
Outcome: Button won $23.99

So what do you think? Good laydown or am I a donkey nit?


  1. FYI, the converter tool got the positions backwards - Button should be BB and Hero should be button. Whatever - the ordering is correct in the hand, though.

    Here's the debate: Everyone I have talked to regarding this hand believes I made a very loose river raise. At this point, I have no doubt I made the correct laydown. However, I disagree that I should be calling the river bet. The whole point of poker is to gain value off of other player's mistakes. If the villain is betting into my made hand, why shouldn't I raise for value here? I'm going to find out VERY quickly whether I'm beat, but if I simply call, then I've gained no value for the $1.50 flop risk, other than the $4.00 on top. After all, why am I calling the flop bet if not to gain implied value?

  2. It's a good question and less obvious than it seems at first. Against a straightforward/nitty player, which this guy seems to be, the major hand you could expect to be ahead of on the river is trip 8's. Arguably he could fold to the raise anyway, but we'll assume he doesn't.

    It still doesn't seem like he checks bare trips that often on the turn. I'd expect his turn check to represent either a hand too weak to go for three streets of value (something like one pair- NOT trips) or something that just improved to a lock and is not slowplaying (that would be a full house). So good check behind on the turn.

    When he bets out strong on the river, I'd expect him to be boated a lot more often than he'll be on two pair. He could also be bluffing or betting the same straight as you, so I don't think I'd fold (though it wouldn't be awful), but I agree that there isn't much value to the raise.

    I am not concerned about a 3-bet bluff here. That would be an awfully sophisticated play for a low stakes player, especially a nit. I simply don't think you're ahead of 50% of hands that call the raise.

    As for your question, "why am I calling the flop bet if not to gain implied value?", the answer is that things have changed. Since the flop, you have gained new information about your opponent's hand based on how he played. Most importantly, the board paired, so your straight is no longer such a monster. Had your opponent bet again on the turn, you'd have folded (I hope).

    Also, your call is not solely for implied value. If Villain had 98, then you had 10 outs to beat him. You'd be correct to call even if no further money were going to go into the pot when you hit, just based on your immediate odds for the money already in the pot.



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