RalphWaldoEmerson's avatar


64 points

ok, thanks.
That's what I been doing, peeling wide. It does lead to some awkward postflop spots for sure, but it's prob +EV in the long run.

Jan. 20, 2019 | 5:44 p.m.

I play 200nl regularly and see a lot of very small 3bets, mostly by rec players.
For example, we open 2bbs otb, they go 5bbs in BB, or we open 3bbs from SB, they go 6bbs in BB.

What should we do with hands like J9o (BTN hand) or A4o (SB hand) against these 2-2.75x sizes where we are getting great immediate odds (and likely facing a weak player)?

Jan. 15, 2019 | 7:55 a.m.

this is one of the least interesting hands that gets played at High stakes tbh.
Jinmay 4bets a low freq 4b combo and flops a a f draw and gets it in. Std.
Linus flats a 4b with AKs which is also a low freq play for him, and flops a lot of equity with bdfd + best overcards.
Why does linus jam flop? idk man, I'm sure it's a mix, like whatever, he decided to shove this time.


Nov. 25, 2018 | 9:29 p.m.

Yes I definitely agree for the most part and the bankroll reason is a smaller consideration hence why I mentioned it as an aside at the end of my post.
There are certain high variance spots though and flatting a pretty large cold 4b with KQs and a player behind (who cc'd the original sqz) is a pretty textbook example.

Oct. 5, 2017 | 1:58 a.m.

Yeah not folding with the 5s blocker and after you use a small river size. You're getting fairly decent odds on a call too for a nuts/air spot.
Might be results oriented but maybe try to avoid using explo sizing against this guy in future? It's kinda obvious what Hero's hand is eh?..

Oct. 3, 2017 | 6:19 a.m.

Hard to take this seriously. Postflop is total spew, what paired hands do you expect him to fold to a ~4x shove? You can't just make wild bluffs at low SPRs in already large pots just because your overall range is strong.
Preflop is whatever, all of the decisions seem reasonable, would probably play the same. Calling the 4b is close I think because your hand will often be dominated MW against these ranges. You need BTN to come along a decent % for flatting vs. BB to be good, but you also need BTN's range to not be super AQ/AK heavy to avoid significant domination issues. So idk. Also comes down to how well rolled you are for this game and what kind of variance you're willing to accept. I make a point of not really folding much preflop in live games that I'm well rolled for.

Oct. 3, 2017 | 6:07 a.m.

Nasty...think I lean towards folding...
- your range here is not weak and is protected by other hands
- you basically can't call rivers that you don't improve on because V's range lacks bluffs and the bluffs he does have can just pile a whole lot of money in on any river as you mentioned
- you probably won't get another vbet from his flushes when you do improve because Hero's range will have too many boats
- your equity isn't even good against his bluffs, Ac5 Ac4 type hands have like 35% or whatever. maybe best case scenario he has AcT-Q sometimes.
- his small sizing indicates to me that it's possible he plays a 54s or KK/33(?) hand like this (expecting Hero to not have a turn xr range on such deep stacks).

Sept. 25, 2017 | 6:32 a.m.

I am still kind of disappointed with Nick's disappearance from RIO after being called out.

could someone point me to this NH thread (assuming I'm understanding correctly that there is one). ty.

Sept. 19, 2017 | 10:42 a.m.

added you. Sorry don't log on here that often.

July 2, 2017 | 5:16 p.m.

Nick, I understand you're wanting to have a discussion about thought process, and not necessarily the specifics of the hand, but what you're saying becomes a little bit confusing when you're not providing an alternative or laying out how YOU would approach the spot. I completely understand the following...

You believe that generally balance is hard to achieve in practice, and trying to use multiple sizes complicates this a lot. Being that when we're playing an unknown opponent the most important thing is to have a balanced strategy, we should try to eliminate unnecessary complication of our strategy.

...but I'm not sure you've convincingly argued that having multiple sizes in this spot is a poor approach. As I'm sure you're aware, the reason we use multiple sizes is to target different categories in Villain's hand range to extract maximum value from his range. In this spot where V's range is a decent % trips, generally speaking Hero's JT is gonna lose a lot of EV by not making some larger-than-"normal" bets. There is, if you want to call it, sort of "inherent EV" there. There is definitely value, I would think, in playing what is thought to be a generally EV maximizing strategy when playing unknown competition, no? I guess what you're saying is that Hero being unbalanced with this multiple sizing plan outweighs the "inherent EV" benefits of the strategy, but then that really becomes a question of how unbalanced Hero is.

June 6, 2017 | 1:24 p.m.

no comments tho :(

May 9, 2017 | 4:47 p.m.

I've pm'd hh2010 and brokenstars.
I've had some really great productive sessions and discussion with kalupso so definitely open to incorporating to more people whether as a group or individually.

May 3, 2017 | 2:39 a.m.

i'd be happy to try it. I already have stars' HU play money home game tables set up from some other club I was a part of once. I'll pm you.

April 22, 2017 | 5:43 p.m.

forget about play money and understand the larger concept, ffs

April 22, 2017 | 5:41 p.m.

not exactly sure what you mean. you can just use home games on 'Stars to get HU play money tables. or we could just play 5nl-25nl on ACR, don't think it would be difficult to take lobbies.

April 21, 2017 | 12:01 p.m.


I recent bought Doug Polker's HU course and for a variety of other reasons as well I want to work on improving my HU game. To that end, I'm looking for regs to practice HU against. 6max regs, HU regs, whatever. I play 500nl-2k 6max/SH on U.S. sites -- my only statistically significant sample is 300k+ hands at 500nl with 5.7bb WR. My HU game is prob pretty average. I can definitely hold 200nl lobbies on ACR if I sit them. Maybe 400 as well. At 600 I will definitely get sat.

In my view there's no point in paying rake to play HU, I'd rather find a player of my similar ability level to practice with. We can do couple hours a week in the mornings or something and maybe discuss some hands as well. I'm open to doing play money or whatever. If we feel there's a need for a financial incentive we can do that, it doesn't matter. Or we can just play 100nl or whatever, idc, the point is I'm not playing 400nl+ losing poker + paying rake.

Thanks for reading and let me know if you're interested. Ideally we will be of similar ability level as that will be most +EV for both of us but I am open to all queries and if you are better than me that would be obv be awesome for me.

April 21, 2017 | 5:59 a.m.

The first and last sentence of this post make strong declarations without elaborating why or discussing the spot in depth. Can you say more?

April 3, 2017 | 8:48 p.m.

Interesting. I considered a value shove briefly but it seems a bit thin lacking reads. Blocking 98s def helps the situation but there's still a decent amount of 9x out there.

April 3, 2017 | 8:46 p.m.

Hand History | RalphWaldoEmerson posted in NLHE: 1knl HU session pt 3
Blinds: $5.00/$10.00 (2 Players) BB: $1074.21 (Hero)
SB: $902.75
HH is backwards, Hero is SB in this hand.
Preflop ($15.00) Hero is BB with 5 8
Hero raises to $25.00, SB calls $15.00
Flop ($50.00) 5 5 Q
SB checks, Hero bets $20.00, SB calls $20.00
Turn ($90.00) 5 5 Q 9
SB checks, Hero bets $60.00, SB calls $60.00
I think we want to have a "regular" turn size for our KK+, and our weak kicker 5x seem like the natural choice to balance.
River ($210.00) 5 5 Q 9 K
SB checks, Hero bets $154.00, SB calls $154.00
Seems obvious to have a big size here with JT, 99, KK, but we also need a smaller size for 5x and pretty unsure what size that should be and which, if any, weaker value hands can go in this size. I figure Villain would get to riv with all the KJ that he doesn't 3bet pre so we should be able to vbet thinner than trips (??). AQ is clearly too thin I think, but what are we doing with AA? What about KQ? KJ? And what sizing are we using for this smaller size?
Final Pot BB wins $516.50
Rake is $1.50

April 2, 2017 | 8:11 p.m.

Hand History | RalphWaldoEmerson posted in NLHE: 1knl HU session pt 2
Blinds: $5.00/$10.00 (2 Players) SB: $1912.37 (Hero)
BB: $1019.75
Preflop ($15.00) Hero is SB with 8 8
BB raises to $25.00, Hero raises to $105.00, BB calls $80.00
Flop ($210.00) T 7 8
Hero bets $109.25, BB calls $109.25
Turn ($428.50) T 7 8 K
Hero bets $254.67, BB calls $254.67
River ($937.84) T 7 8 K 6
Hero checks, BB bets $550.83 and is all in, Hero calls $550.83
Mehhhhh. In theory I think we're supposed to xc...wondering if we need to in practice.
Final Pot BB wins $2038.00
Rake is $1.50

April 2, 2017 | 7:57 p.m.

Hand History | RalphWaldoEmerson posted in NLHE: Couple spots from 1knl HU session
Blinds: $5.00/$10.00 (2 Players) SB: $994.00 (Hero)
BB: $2190.84
He seemed pretty solid, capable. In a previous hand in a 3b pot he peeled K9cc on T87ssd vs. a half pot cbet which seemed close and maybe a bit loose. He tripled off 87hh in a 3b pot on AT36hh2, which was fairly std I guess although his blockers for river shove aren't that great.
Preflop ($15.00) Hero is SB with Q J
BB raises to $25.00, Hero raises to $105.00, BB calls $80.00
Flop ($210.00) T A K
Hero bets $109.25, BB calls $109.25
I had been using a 50% cbet size in 3b pots on coordinated textures in this session.
Turn ($428.50) T A K 5
Hero bets $278.50, BB calls $278.50
River ($985.50) T A K 5 K
Hero bets $501.25 and is all in, BB folds
Should we set up a xc range otr here and should this hand be in it?
Final Pot SB wins $984.00
Rake is $1.50

April 2, 2017 | 7:51 p.m.

Hi Kevin, always enjoy your vids a lot.

22:55 trips gk discussion -- TT+ appears too thin for three streets of value with this sizing plan:

Overpairs can go three streets with a normal turn size of 70%. It doesn't even like 100 ott.
Out of curiosity I also ran textures 833r2f and 822r3f to see the difference and it will in fact take TT+ three streets with this size plan on those boards (NOTE I did not enter multiple sizes so it was not a size comparison on those boards).

Jan. 10, 2017 | 3:17 a.m.

bc it block 76 and AA which are V's autocalls. 7x too strong to bluff, EV of call is way higher.

Jan. 10, 2017 | 1:35 a.m.

is he gone for good?

Dec. 23, 2016 | 6:31 a.m.

Don't really agree with the analysis of A7s beginning 26:45...reasons:

  • I simply don't agree you can conclude with a super high degree of confidence that QTs T9s opt for a smaller size otr. That seems assumptive. And these hands form a pretty decent portion of his riv vbet range when he checks back high card monotone texture otf.
  • because Hero's range is capped, I think you can't be as certain about coming to conclusions on how thin V might bet for this sizing. If Hero NEVER has better than AJ otr, than AK and QT are effectively the same hand for IP, and I think there are regs who, in playing a theory oriented approach, would just bet the same class of hands for the same size. In other spots where Hero is uncapped, it might make more sense for V to exploitatively use diff bet sizes to get calls from diff hand categories of Hero's range.
  • at NL1k, I think K8s gets defended a decent amt vs. 3b COvSB and the non heart combos, if V is a decent player, would pbb take this line at a high freq. If they reach river this way, they are bluffing 100% of the time imo bc of how infrequently IP has natural bluffs as you mention.
  • some regs are gonna be capable of turning 54s/65s or 22-66 w/o a heart into a two street bluff there.

In conclusion I agree it's not a great spot with the sizing used by V and it's probably only a marginally winning call but it's not a fold imo. thoughts?

Dec. 22, 2016 | 5:56 a.m.

Nice vid, I like the two party analysis and back and forth.

Could you clarify what you're saying @5:00-5:23 re: "base rate of bluffs"? "...it's kind of a Bayesian concept that the wider the distribution of the opponent's range is that consists of unpaired hands, the more likely it is that he's able to look down and pull the trigger with a bluff at a higher rate."

I'm kind of confused, are you just saying that if fish have a lot of bluffs, they're going to bluff a lot? Or are you saying something more than that, like that the less bluffs a fish has, the less likely he is to bluff them, and the more he has, the more likely he is to bluff them? Because I'm not sure if I can agree with that latter statement...

Dec. 22, 2016 | 2:50 a.m.

Dec. 21, 2016 | 3:14 p.m.

great video as usual kevin, pace was good too.

for spots like Jc8 @ 8:35 and T5c @ 13:30, how do you keep track of frequencies there? Clearly it's not difficult to get OOL even when you have a relevant blocker.

@14:50 66 doesn't this do a good job of blocking his river bluffs?

@ 26:30 certainly it makes sense to call AQ>99 otr for blocker reasons but does it ever become a concern that if our bluffcatching range is a lot of Ax that he could vbet worse than Jx, even for this size? I doubt it's a GTO approved play but it seems like an explo line some might take in that spot, although they would pbb choose more like 80-100% size. If he had sized lower/normal size there, do you begin to call 88-TT ahead of AQ?

Dec. 21, 2016 | 2:48 p.m.

sorry idk this software so it just looks like gibberish to me :(. your assumption is that hero has no bluffing range otr??

I think we should choose a sizing plan that doesn't involve us checking tptk otr. Hero says "it doesn't feel like we can get 3 big streets" but we made it 27% otf and didn't even OB turn so...

Oct. 18, 2016 | 11:31 p.m.

I don't agree with the following:

  • Villain's two pairs being limited to AJ -- personally vs. your 3.5x sizing IP I defend A7s and A6s to 3b. I find it a little bit suspect to say that V definitely defends hands like QTs KTs vs. 3b but not suited Ax.
  • Villain defending T9dd T9hh otf
  • V betting all his QT, KT, KQ ott. KQ and KT have a bit of sdv here, I wouldn't say they're a mandatory turn bet 100%, they can see a river and decide how to play it, e.g. on a board pair they pbb just want to check down and win at SD sometimes. Furthermore QT KT are really low equity vs. a turn calling range so I just dont think you can say they get stabbed all the time by IP player.

so yeah in summary I think V's value range is wider than you give him credit for and I don't think on average they have all of these bluffs you're giving him. Facing an OB otr and blocking several bluffing hands holding Tc I think it's a clear fold as ppl just don't bluff enough on Bovada.

Oct. 18, 2016 | 4:30 a.m.

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