blackluster777 's avatar


273 points

Comment | blackluster777 commented on nl200r cold4bet

against a jamming range of TT/JJ at 50% each, and KQcc AJcc, we only have 21.3% equity. And that's if they only jam sets 50% of the time. Seems like he needs to be getting here with substantially more bluffs or doing some protection jamming. I think I would fold

Also, I think the small bet is good on turn. Targets 99 well and puts his draws in a tough position. Jamming I don't like as much as JJ/TT is a significant portion of a super narrow range. 1/3 seems to accomplish everything you want at a discounted price.

I like it

May 27, 2020 | 10:23 p.m.

Thanks alot for this. I have been struggling in how to approach studying with solvers, and this gives me confidence to begin developing my own system based on your steps. Just started playing in 200NL games online and want to really understand the game deeper for the first time, and I think this is going to be a pivotal change in my approach. Thanks again!

May 27, 2020 | 8:27 p.m.

Any idea why a suited hand with no backdoors would be chosen over an offsuit hand when raising? There doesn't seem to be any obvious reason for this, and it's definitely not a shortcut for memorization xD

May 27, 2020 | 7:18 p.m.

Why don't you think it is a good idea?

Against a range of 99, 66 and 78 we have 17% equity. If we make it $26 on the flop, and he makes it $52, we still need 20% to continue, but we have 17%. If we give him 1 combo of TT and 1 combo of JJ(which may not even be there to begin with), then our equity increases to 29%.

But, even with the additional equity, we have to face the fact we have really bad reverse implied odds against 6 combos in his range(99/66). We do make up for this with 78s in some capacity being able to improve to a boat and stacking him, which does count for something.

so, I guess if we min clicked it, and he made it a 2x or less 4b, I suppose we can find a call just trying to pair the board on the turn. But if he made it any bigger I think we can find folds, basically because it will price us out. But, as soon as we think he can have any hands outside of sets/straights, we cannot be folding.

EDIT: Actually, even with a small click, I think we might even end up finding folds on flop, because something we have to consider is that we are OOP, and against such a strong narrow range, we might not even be able to realize our full equity. If we have 28% in a best case scenario, we are going to be facing a bet very often on the turn because we are so far behind. So, even tho we may have 28% against his range, we probably face a bet 2/3 of the time on the turn. .28*.66 = 18%. Meaning, if the board doesn't pair, and we face a substantial bet, we aren't realizing our full equity, dropping it below the needed threshold.

May 26, 2020 | 8:59 p.m.

Throw any ideas of balance out the window here. We are not striving for balance against fun players, but rather on maximally exploiting them and extracting as much value as possible.

I don't think C/Ring big is good here. By doing this, we make it pretty easy for him to bet fold 9x, and I don't think things like 77/88 get bet 4-way very often, especially for a half pot size.

I think it is reasonable to find folds if we get 4b on the flop, as the only hands that make sense from a passive player will be hands that have us beat/drawing near dead

donking makes sense because it fits the criteria of "Can I get value from my hand?". Taking it straight to ABC poker. I think it's easy to over complicate things, and I think this is something I can do better with. Just saying you don't want to be donking multiway doesn't make any sense. Of course you do want to be doing this in some scenarios, especially when up against fun players who will not be that aggressive post flop.

May 26, 2020 | 8:45 p.m.

1-2 Global

Recreational player opens 3x UTG in FR game with 117bb eff

Recreational cold calls MP w 117bb eff (first session playing together; my gut is he will likely have suited connectors, Axs PP's, some strong offsuit broadways in range. Don't know if he is going crazy with cold calls preflop containing offsuit combos etc.)

Reg overcalls on the Bttn w 200bb
Hero cold calls SB 117bb Eff w 55

BB folds

4 way to flop
965r Pot = $26

Hero check, PFR checks
Rec in MP bets $13, Button folds

Hero calls, PFR folds

Turn Ko

Basically, I feel like I could approach this spot better with recreational players in the hand. Firstly I think donking might be a good idea, as a Check/raise on this board, even against fun players, looks super strong. But by donking, they may assign us stuff like 9x, 67, 88, TT type of stuff.

I least like just calling the flop, and think maybe even going for small check raise, anywhere from 2x-2.5x would be reasonable, and then sizing turn and rivers small, like 1/4 or 1/3 pot looking for crying calls from 9x, TT type stuff. If we get click backed on flop, I think we can even consider folding a set, because it's likely his range is so weighted towards 99, 66 and 78s, and probably only has very very few combos of overpairs given the action.

Anyone disagree with my thoughts here?

May 26, 2020 | 12:53 a.m.

Right. When I say "put in tough spot", it's a shortcut for "solver strat targeting bottom of their defense range". Same implication, different terminology.

And that is probably true. I think on american sites you see wider flatting ranges. However,I haven't played in Euro sites so this is purely speculation.

May 25, 2020 | 11:31 p.m.

yeah i think it's close. I think it depends on the BB and if he can mistakenly go to thin for value with a hand like AT, or if he has somthing like JJ preflop. I think it's reasonable to see some of these play like this given the action, and his sizing. He may place too many AJ of FD's in my range and not enough JJ+, so he could tihnk he always has the best and is trying to go thin vs the button. I think it's super close, but I'm okay with a call or a fold

May 25, 2020 | 11:28 p.m.

There's been a few spots that have come up lately where I have found myself a bit lost in.

Basically, the situation typically goes Hero raise, and a Reg calls IP and the board comes down with two broadway cards.

It makes sense to me to be more polarized here and less merged, which I think PIO reflects. But, I'm noticing alot of small bets with the split range, which is strange to me.

My best guess is that it's because the equities are so close, that a big bet doesn't really serve much purpose, while a small bet puts the weaker parts of their range in a tougher spot. Like cbetting 1/3 on a QJ4r flop, puts 77/88 in a weird spot Bttn vs a EP/MP raise in a full ring game when ranges are so narrow.

May 22, 2020 | 10:41 p.m.


Hero raise UTG FR to $6 100bb KdKc
Bttn calls w 56bb and seems to be a big spot
Sb calls w 67bb
BB calls w 100bb, no info on him as this is first session at 1-2 on this site

4 way to flop
8s9dTc pot = $24
SB and BB check
Hero checks
Bttn checks

Turn 5s
SB checks
BB leads $12
Hero call $12
Button call $12
SB fold

River 2d
Pot = $60
BB bets $20

There so many potential value combos in the BB range here for closing the action, and I feel like the small bet is virtually never a bluff. The question is, is he ever trying to thinly value bet the bttn w a hand like ATo, and does he even overcall 4 way on the BB vs a 3x raise.... No information on whether he is a reg or not.

If he is thinking, I think my range is incredibly face up. Lots of overpairs, and some busted FD's. Seems unlikely I would be calling the turn music with a hand like AJo/even raising it 100% preflop. Only thing, is the button could potentially make light calls vs a small sizing, so maybe he can be going thin/blocking to avoid facing a bet with AT/KT type hands. Who knows, maybe he is passive and calls pre w JJ sometimes.

I think we have to call given the absence of info. Wondering if anyone disagrees?

May 22, 2020 | 10:20 p.m.

Glad your old content is still available for essential :)

9:35 - when the rec leads out on turn 3 way, why not just fold QT here? My perception is he will be stronger than average so our equity is quite poor. And because we are up against a stronger range on average, it diminishes alot of our bluff opportunities, especially if his bluffing range contains alot of FD's in it

30 min - K7hh, I was thinking I would like to bet 1/3 when check too here on flop. You elected to check down. Why do you choose to pass up on stealing pot from the weak parts of his range like Ah. Do you think that using this hand would just be overdoing it, and are looking for opportunities on varying turn/river cards, and saving stabs for more hands that have more backdoor opportunities, say like 87hh

32:40 - KQo - not standard 3b pre?

Thanks for the effort, and sad to see you go elite for selfish reasons, but glad you're being recognized. You're def next level and deserve it. Thanks for the contributions

May 22, 2020 | 8:49 p.m.

I would be careful with this(and I'm sure you're aware).

This will be very dependent on if he is raising flop at a high clip with AQ/calling it off. But it is a good point you raise. Pretty sick if he is flop raising AQ. But we can always justify a defend with our KK no spade for starters until we develop a better understanding of what's happening

May 21, 2020 | 6:21 p.m.

This was a good one.

May 21, 2020 | 6:05 p.m.

I wonder why my sim is so much different here. The small size restriction is still the most commonly used line, why would that make such a huge difference on the flop and turn?

It's weird that my sim is using a higher frequency check/overbet line on turn in comparison to what yall are showing. I wonder if I give the flop more options if that changes anything

May 21, 2020 | 4:56 p.m.

I eliminated other bet sizes because they were very infrequently used on flop

May 20, 2020 | 9:52 p.m.

I built a sim, and the flop was like a 55% check and a 45% 1/3 cbet. The most common turn sizing after a flop check thru is 1.5x pot with alot of checking. I think this makes sense, and practically makes sense. I do think that the check behind is relatively capping, but I might be wrong. It's a pretty rare spot, but I do tend to think that most of his flushes will end up finding bets wanting to build the pot. maybe I'm wrong.

The equity is interesting however and I didn't look at it until you mentioned it. Didn't realize we are at a equity deficit on the flop/turn

I feel like checking range on flop here is pretty good, and then using turn overbets makes sense to me, especially if people are actually capping their range on the flop/betting too much. I tend to think in practice this may be more true than what a solver might do.

May 20, 2020 | 9:50 p.m.

Hero raise HJ to 3bb w KJhh w 100bb stacks
Reg cold calls CO w 100bb stacks

Goes headsup
Pot = 7.5bb

Hero checks
CO checks

Turn 7h

I imagine a CO flatting range to be something like KTs, QTs, JTs, AJs, KQs, AQo, T9s, ATs, KJs, QJs, 55-99, some 22-44....

Once the flop checks through, I guess his range looks something like 44, 55, 66, 99, some QT, QJ, KQ, and AQ. Think top pair can reasonably check back not expecting 3 streets, and wanting to pot control against some of my C/Rs. I would have to guess most flushes do not check back flop, but wouldn't discount it entirely.

So, after the flop checks thru, I guess we are most likely up against a capped range, and we are mostly uncapped given I will check this flop alot(maybe even pure). So overbetting turn seems to be a reasonable option going to the turn. Hands that make the most sense to do so would probably be AsTx, flushes, maybe some AQ ourselves. As far as using some smaller bets, I guess hands like QT or QJ could do some of this, alongside some sets/low flushes (to protect from capping our own range). And even doing some checking with the weakest Qx anticipating 1 clean street of value, and allowing us to bluff catch turns/value bet rivers and more effectively bluff some hands like this one on the river, if the turn checks thru as well.


May 20, 2020 | 8:49 p.m.

I think the best way is to link up with some other good players and beginning discussing spots. That along side a consistent
review method to get feedback, and also content on here. (it's a shame deucescracked is no longer up, I think they had a GREAT platform and incredible content, especially for micro to midstakes players)

Tracking hands you play and getting feedback. Sharing your thought process and getting feedback, listening to other people's views etc. Kinda a hard one to answer, but I think a major factor is surrounding yourself with people who are intelligent and discussing with them

May 20, 2020 | 7:35 p.m.

agree with everyone on this one. Think I can find the fold

May 19, 2020 | 6:38 p.m.

Could you elaborate?

May 19, 2020 | 6:04 p.m.

w the T2s, I paused the vid. I like the river bet, but I would have gone at least 40$. I was thinking I wouldn't want to go too small and have them get curious with something like a J or 6. Think if you just bet bigger people will be less likely to speculate with the weak stuff.

May 19, 2020 | 5:44 p.m.

hands that are "medium" value. They aren't quite bad enough to fold, but also don't serve much purpose as a 3b. I think something like KTs, QTs, JTs, A8s, some PP's make sense. Id rather 3b a hand like A2s pre from the bttn than A8s because A2s makes stronger Ax fold, and flatting A8 keeps lower Ax in play. That's if we are going to have some flats. Maybe hands like AQo as well. Typically not doing much flatting with AJo type things. But I think something like QTs might still be a better 3b as it gets things like KQ, QJ AJ A9 to fold, and our pairs are rather dominated often

May 19, 2020 | 5:03 p.m.

that's what I did, bet 35 into 48 (72%)..

I was interested to see in PIO sim, that the most frequently used turn size is 1/3, and the river was mostly 1/3 bets, with some 3/4 bets at a 18% frequency.

I also plugged my specific hand and sizings used, and PIO suggests in pio land that my specific combo is losing -.203bb. Maybe isn't losing in practice, I don't know. Villain actually ended up showing with AA, which I really wasn't expecting.

I expect overbetting to be more of a thing from us once the 6 comes in as we can have 78 and loads of sets, and against a somewhat capped range, but this doesn't seem to be the case. Maybe with some nodelocking, this does become true however.

Maybe people are checking back AK/AQ more than I first imagined after talking with a friend, which makes my line seem a bit better.

Why do you think 1/3 would be a preferred option?

May 15, 2020 | 7:35 p.m.


First time playing with this guy, but seems to be pretty standard from what I have seen. Think he is a reg; multi-tabling, full stacks, raise/folding etc etc

Hero raise KQdd to 3bb SB 110bb start
BB raises to 10bb
Hero calls

Flop 9s3c2d
Pot $20
Hero checks
BB checks

Turn Ts
Hero bets $14
BB calls

River 6h
Pot = $48

Stacks are 86bb eff

SOOOO. What do we think here?

Pre-flop, I think calling is good here. Could see 4-betting maybe being a thing in very aggressive games and if the BB is going HAM, but don't think that is usually the case at the 100NL games, so I flat call.

On the flop, I expect villain to be C-betting quite often here, so the check back is kinda strange, and not sure what to make of it.

The turn Ts is quite good for my range in general, and I think practically it gives me a huge advantage, as I think 78 in his range is basically always cbetting flop. I think I am also defending at least some 22/33 preflop, but suppose also doing a fair amount of folding given wider ranges, and probably less implied odds.

My auto pilot was just "bet targeting Ah and flush draws", but being honest felt lost in this hand. Still not super sure what to make of it, other than off the cuff I feel like the flop check back is actually alot stronger than I first imagined. Thinking maybe we outta be much more careful on turn. What turn sizing makes the most sense in our shoes?

Would like to hear some thoughts on this one

May 15, 2020 | 6:19 a.m.

29:20 - QJs, why are you folding this getting better than 3:1? I see the squeeze has a 2.5% 3bet, but that probably includes AK in it as well. Are you thinking that maybe he doesn't squeeze AK 100%, so our equity is just going to be too close with a very low SPR?

31:36 - A4o
This is a scenario I have been a bit mixed on lately. We have a hand that has showdown, doesn't get called by worse, but also doesn't really get better to fold(unless we barrel)

What is the purpose of us betting? I imagine it's a combination of equity clean up, having equity ourselves against their calling range, and the ability to barrel some turns and get better hands to fold on later streets. This is a part of my range I would be really tempted to check back and bluff catch a turn bet with. Could you explain why it is the norm to cbet these holdings?

I suppose it has something to do as well with our overall strategy benefiting from "range betting". But this would also only be applicable against someone we were not playing in a vacuum against. Something like AK makes more sense to cbet with as we can actually get called by worst Ax. But maybe for a smaller sizing.

I also notice you use a half pot sizing. What are you trying to achieve?

When I'm approaching a situation, I tend to put my hands into two camps of getting called by worst or getting better hands to fold, and if I can't answer one of these two questions, I typically find it's not a great time to be placing bets. Something that stands out however, is there is "value" in getting equity to fold, which might be why we end up betting aggressively on the flop. Especially if they are going to under check raise, and overfold their equity, and also not stab alot on later streets. It would be unfortunate to check behind twice and let a hand like QTo realize it's full equity.


May 14, 2020 | 10:43 p.m.

Comment | blackluster777 commented on Simple Spot

I think there can be alot of merit in just cbetting our low equity hands if the recreational players range is wide enough. If Cbetting would net EV as opposed to check/folding(0EV). Something I do sometimes that I think works well. It's unbalanced but against someone just looking at their cards and the board and giving up when they miss, seems pretty good

Thinking T9cc for example

May 14, 2020 | 9:43 p.m.

Yeah I think we can fold river. His flop cbetting range will contain a lot of FD's, and will fold alot of air/weak pairs to a 3-way flop raise. So I think his range becomes quite narrow and flush heavy by the river. Alot of lower sets likely take a different line as well, so I think we are quite beat here. Worst hands don't make sense to be going for value here either

May 13, 2020 | 7:29 p.m.

I think it's a clear fold on turn

May 13, 2020 | 7:25 p.m.

36:50 K7hh
Why is this a no thought call on the river for you? Seems to me that we can have AQ, AJ, AT that all find calls here, so not too bad to have some folds from K7s. Also a hand like KT/KQ blocks QTs straight combos

Where do you see the EV coming in from this hand vs this size on the flop 3-way? If the rec had more money behind I would be more inclined to call. But with the larger sizing, it seems like it will be hard to make a good chunk of hands fold on river to make turning our hand into a bluff super effective for a single bet. And when we get there our hand I think it's easy for the reg to find a healthy amount of folds, and the rec doesn't quite have enough to offer required implied odds to make back on a call. I can't quite come up with a great reason to continue this. I mean yeah, we have BD diamonds, and a gutter, and suppose can use it to balance our range, as if we fold this where are we drawing bluffs from. Could you offer some concrete insight into where you see the EV coming from to make back this? Would you also be finding a lot of calls with say QTo with no diamond?

May 11, 2020 | 9:59 p.m.

Do you think there is much EV in developing a call range in this spot opposed to playing R/F? How would you estimate this?

May 8, 2020 | 10:03 p.m.

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