Did I Get Unlucky, Or Play It Wrong?

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Li just wants me to review a hand that he played in a $1/$2 deep cash game. In this hand it folds around. MP1 opens, hero decides to call, and Li says: “MP is a weak reg who opens loosely. I normally wouldn’t flat this, but knowing the CO and BUT were very loose players, I’d like to play a multi-way pot with a suited connector. Is this the wrong concept?”

Let’s just talk about this conceptually, for a moment. In a situation where you are going to call knowing that it’s likely going to go multi-way, what you’re really doing, especially with a hand like a suited connector or a small or medium pair or even like an AJo type hand, is trading a better price pre-flop for a smaller SPR going post flop. Now because there’s extra stack depth here – everyone’s at least 200BB effective, at least as far as the main villains are concerned; MP1 and then the loose players, the CO and the BUT – this is a situation where we can most likely expect it still to be a decently deep SPR.

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If everyone calls say, CO and BUT call, and we go 4 way to it, it’s going to be about 40 in the middle and about 390 back. So, we’re looking at what give or take around 9ish SPR. That’s okay. There’s still a lot, a lot of play left in that scenario. Because of that, I’m okay with it. But you want to be very careful if you’re starting with 100BB effective stacks, because what you’re doing is putting yourself in yes a multi-way pot which is great, but the SPR is going to be halved. So maybe, like 4 to 5 SPR, and now all of a sudden it’s much, much tougher to draw in those situations.

Drawing hands, suited connectors, suited gappers, etc. perform much, much better when there’s more stack depth, more SPR depth so that there’s more room and flexibility to bluff post flop, semi bluff post flop to actually take draws with correct implied odds. Those sort of things.

So, I like the fact that you’re thinking ahead, as far as if I call what’s realistically going to happen. If there’s two deeper stacked fish, I usually would obviously prefer to have position on them so ideally they’d be in the blinds, so that I can have ultimate position going post flop. In this scenario that’s not the case. But if the CO and the BUT are both passive fish, then I’m definitely very, very happy with this because I don’t really want a call here, if I expect them to squeeze a lot. That’s not a good thing for us. If they’re loose aggressive that’s not a good thing, but if they’re loose passive that means two great things. One, most likely not going to get squeezed pre-flop, which is great, which means we at least get to see the flop, which is what we really want with a hand like this. And then two, they’re not very likely to raise post flop, and if they do raise they’re usually going to raise to a poor size which means that post flop we don’t have to worry about getting blown off our draw all that much, which is obviously a great thing for us as well.

bad fish

So again, I love the fact you’re thinking ahead. In this exact scenario, I’m okay with it. There certainly are situations where I’d rather just 3B it. I’m okay just contending for the pot pre-flop, but in this exact scenario the way that you laid it out so far, you know again, assuming that the CO and BUT are both fish that are going to spew off a lot post flop, I think there’s a lot of validity to just calling here inviting them all to a pot and going forward from there.

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Okay in this exact situation, MP1 decides to continuation bet for 30. Hero just decides to call, and I like the fact that we’re calling here. I think calling will induce extra calls from the CO and BUT, which is exactly what we want. Induce those extra sources of implied odds. I don’t really want to raise here. I think MP1’s probably continuation betting a pretty strong range, and I don’t really want to get jammed on and then I’m just sitting there with a 5 high draw. Not great for us. Rather call here, try to induce the other guys to come along as well, and again because they’re most likely loose passive, I’m assuming that I’m not going to get raised here a ton of the time which is obviously a great thing for us. So we end up getting called in both spots, end up improving on the turn, face another bet from MP1, and hero decides to jam.

So, I’m definitely happy that hero’s shoving here. This is just the texture where right this moment, I assume that over pairs and single pairs are going to feel the absolute most comfortable. Rather than calling and then god forbid the river’s like a 5, 8, T. Something that’s going to slow those over pairs or single pairs down. MP1’s kind of repping that he has some sort of over pair, maybe a set, that kind of thing. Obviously I want him to put in as much money as possible, and I think if we jam here he is likely to just feel pot committed and cry call it off. I think the loose passive players behind us can certainly have single pairs they over value, flush draws that they over value, that kind of stuff. Maybe they picked up a pair and draw. Like a 78. And then all of a sudden they’re going to feel sticky. So ultimately, I feel really, really comfortable. I think we’re really, really far ahead of the average continuance ranges by a long shot. Obviously T8 could be in there but there aren’t a ton of combos of it. Ultimately, I definitely feel like we have the best hand by a long shot, and the second best hands can and will gladly continue.

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I like the fact that we’re shoving as opposed to just flatting. I think too many players would at least consider a flat here, and I think this is definitely the wrong situation for it and against the wrong opponents, more specifically.

We end up getting called by the CO, and MP1 gets it in as well. River is the 7s and unfortunately the CO had T8s all along, but ultimately that makes up such a super, super small percentage of his overall range. Again, hero’s post flop line looks totally, totally fine and good. I like the fact that we’re just flatting the flop continuation bet. I like the fact that we’re jamming over the turn when we improve. Ultimately post flop looks really, really good. The main inflection point however was really pre-flop. And again, understanding if you’re going to call and open raise with a suited connector and you’re expecting a multi-way pot, understanding the trade off – you’re getting multiple sources of implied odds for a smaller SPR but when there’s deeper stacks, obviously the SPR can be much, much, much more reasonable and something that’s going to be much better for you even when you don’t have absolute position.

SplitSuit

My name is James "SplitSuit" Sweeney and I'm a poker player, coach, and author. I've released 300+ videos, coached 500+ players, and co-founded the training site Red Chip Poker. Contact me if you need any help improving your poker game!

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