When To Shove A NFD

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This hand is from a $2/$3 live game. There’s an open limp, there’s a small raise and hero decides to 3bet to $27. This is the kind of situation where I would much prefer hero 3bet significantly larger. I’m definitely happy that we’re 3betting, I definitely want to be doing that, but when you only go to $27 here, you’re letting your opponent get a pretty great price and you’re giving them both position. Both of those things are usually things I don’t want to do together. Particularly when there’s a lot of play left and when I can easily charge him more preflop. Now there’s no information given about villain or the other villain for that matter but typically this is the spot where I’m just going to go up to something like $45 or $50 bucks and play forward from there.

Yes that may seem egregiously large considering he only went to 3X but he went to 3X in a situation where he should have gone larger himself and 2, I don’t play into this game. They go small because when a 3 bet comes in, it typically comes in smaller as well which then gives them more ability to get involved with it. I want to say, “no, no, no. If you want to get involved with me that’s fine but you’re going to pay a premium to do so”. This is a situation where again I’d much prefer to see the larger size happen for pure, pure value and we’ll just go forward from there. But as played we only go to $27, get a caller, get another caller and the flop gives us two overs and a flush draw – but it’s extremely, extremely connected and hero decides to continuation bet for $25 bucks.

In this situation I’d say you have two different options. You could 1, continuation bet for somebody like $70 or $75 bucks and then rip turns when it’s about a pot size or left on the turn or 2, you could try to go for a check-raise here. I don’t think betting $25 is going to be a good option because if you get called you’re going to be at awkward land a lot on the turn. If you get raised, okay you’re in a situation where you pretty much have to commit but your $25 bet didn’t really do anything. It just again, creates this kind of an awkward situation. Again this is another spot in the hand where bet sizing seems to be an issue.

Want to learn more about bet sizing? This video shows you how small bet sizing changes can create huge increases in value.

David I would definitely say maybe spend a little time thinking about your bet sizing strategy because yes I know you’re curious about how to handle the rest of this hand but honestly bet sizing is a huge, huge factor when it comes to playing anything. Especially live games. If you’re making inaccuracies in bet sizing, trust me it’s going to hurt so as played we end up getting called, end up facing a raise and here we are. David’s real question at this point is, “do we just call this? Do we shove it? What goes into this?”. It’s a pretty fair question. It’s a little bit uncomfortable because is there really any fold equity, yes or no. It’s a little awkward.

What I want to do is take a moment and show you how to proof this mathematically. Now this is all stuff you do away from the table and when you do enough of these calculations off table, you start to get a general feel for it when you’re in real time. In this situation I’m just going to use my custom spread sheet. You can download this. If your interested, here’s a link for grab this poker spreadsheet. We already pre populated most of the important information. Pot size before we shove is 258. How much more when we shove is 268, awesome. We have to call $100 more. The only 2 things left are, what’s our equity uncalled and does villain ever fold, yes or no.

Let’s proof our equity first. Here we have ace king of hearts, we have the board and now we have to assign the range. This is the range of hands that our opponent would have would raise the flop to $125 and would call our shove with. I think it’s reasonable to say sets are in that range. Let’s say they could have they could have the nuts, I think that’s totally reasonable. Let’s say top air, top kicker totally reasonable. Let’s say the combo draws. Like jack 10 and 10/9. Let’s also maybe do like a king 10, just a king 10 suited and maybe an ace 10 suited too, sure. That factors in some of those like over card and 2 way straight draw kind of things. Maybe we’ll throw in a couple of suited connectors just for the heck of it. Suit selection, throw hearts on those, good to go and evaluate.

fold equity calc

You notice that we have 44% equity, awesome. You notice that as played assuming that there’s even no fold equity whatsoever, this is still fine. If he ever folds, let’s say he raises something like king 10 and then if you shove, he randomly decides to hit the full button. Well if that’s the case, your equity goes down a little bit but then all of a sudden there’s hands and villains ranges then foldings. Then all of a sudden you’re getting that extra fold equity bonus which is fantastic. This is just a situation where, yeah I’m just going to shove here. Certainly not going to fold my grip of equity. I am not going to call him and try to like shove turns. I don’t see that doing anything good. I’m not going to call him and fold to a turn rip because I don’t want to do that.

It’s just the kind of situation where I don’t really have any option that I’m like thrilled with other than shoving. Shove it is and just ride the variance train and go from there. In this situation we end running into exactly the nuts and you know what, it just is what it is. This is all factored into the equity, the EV. It just simply is what it is. We don’t panic about it. We just ride the variance train. We’ll win this our fair share. Other times we’ll lose but you know what it just is what it is. We’re not going to panic about it. This is not a situation to freak out about I assure you.

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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