Really, really weird hand - K9dd OOP (1 Viewer)


Full House
Oct 29, 2014
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"The Sticks"
OK, this has to be one of the oddest hands all around that I've ever played - I'm just going to recount a complete hand history, and you give me your thoughts on what you would have done differently (probably everything - I'm not sure I've ever taken a line quite like this before...)

Game is $5-on-the-button NLHE (no blinds, button posts $5 and is last to act preflop.) Hero is me, myself, and I - whatever that really means (I'm not even sure at this point...) This is only the 9th or 10th game I've played here, but villain has been at every one of them as far as I can remember. To this point I've never gone home a loser, but tonight (still pretty early on) I'm getting crushed - I've been stacked off twice on the river in cooler situations (one backdoor FH vs. my backdoor 3rd-nut flush, the other a turned flush-over-flush, and in both instances villains OOP decided to slowplay and C/R the river for trivial amounts, making me look like an idiot for calling off against the "obvious" nuts - or at least so it may seem to the villain.)

Villain is a solid TAG - emphasis more on the "T" than the "AG" in his case, but he is a good player with excellent poker IQ who is situationally and opponent-aware, though sometimes his bet-sizing could use work. Although tight, he is not going to sit and let himself be run over all night.

Hero starts hand with about $470, villain covers.

The hand:

This is a "splash pot" - the house places $20 in the pot preflop before any action (yes the game is raked, but mostly for casino-style promotions like splash pots and mini-BBJs. The actual house take is low and it is a great game.)

Villain posts $5 OTB. "SB" folds. "BB" (Hero) limps for $5 with :kd::9d:. Amazingly, only one other player in MP limps, everyone else folds. Villain checks his option on the button. ($35 pot)

Flop is :9c::6h::4d:. Hero leads for $20. MP player folds, villain raises to $45. Hero calls. ($125 pot)

Turn is :qs:. Hero leads for $60, villain snap-calls. ($245 pot)

River is :qc:. Hero leads for $60 (I honestly never thought I'd find a spot where I'd like the "same bet" play, but I did here...) Villain counts out a call, then raises to $150. Hero calls.

Sooo, who is folding pre? Raising pre? Checking flop? (That would be pretty bad I think - only thing I'm sure about in this hand...) Folding to the near-minraise? Check-folding turn? Check-calling turn? Leading bigger on turn? Leading bigger on river (are you value-betting or bluffing?) Check-folding river? Check-calling river?

So many questions - I honestly have no friggin' clue what the best move was at almost every decision point in this silly hand, and that feels weird. :eek:
I don't mind the preflop action or the flop action. But I'd probably check fold turn and river.
Preflop is a fold for me. K9s OOP has the potential for trouble much more than the potential for greatness. ( even with the splashed pot ) I note the "TAG" villain checks rather than raises.

Flop, ok Hero has top pair + back door flush draw. A bet seems reasonable. I like $30 more than $20 but that is little more than quibbling.

Hero gets raised by villain, almost a min raise. So lets see - - we have a Tag limping from the button, but min raising this flop. How can we range him? A9, sets and two pair lead my list. I have trouble putting any hand worse than Hero's hand in villain's primary range. Maybe a weaker nine? Or perhaps a blocking raise with a straight draw? The original post makes note of villain's lack of aggression relative to his tightness. Absent more data, I fold to the min raise.

Turn, Hero's hand didn't get better. A less than half pot bet looks weak unless that is Hero's normal sizing. Hero should bet like he means it. Hero's flop play was weakfish - lots of hands with a queen are marginally plausible depending on Hero's table image. Bet/call the flop followed by a turn bet is a strong line - hero is basically bluffing now holding MP/GK.

River- - "Same bet as last street" is polarized. Hero is weak, trying for a cheap showdown or strong begging for a call. Villain's raise is alarming and even more polarized than hero's river lead, a bluff or trips+.

I score the hand this way:
Preflop: C- (folding is better even with the 4bb splashed pot)
Flop bet: B+ (maybe sized too small)
Flop call: D ( Hero doesn't seem to be ranging villain in making his decision, nor considering the leverage from two future streets of betting )
Turn bet: B- ( I can respect Hero's effort to bluff villain but the bet has to be significantly bigger. )
River bet: F ( Hero's bet is weak. It isn't going to fold a better hand than K9, but it might get calls from weaker hands. Hero has fired twice at the pot and failed. It is time to stop.)
River call: F (Hero only beats a bluff, {something like a whiffed straight draw which makes some sense of villain's betting sequence actually} If villain had a wilder level of aggression Hero could put more air in villain's range. The price is too cheap, $90 raise into a $450 pot looks like value rather than bluff to me.

Getting 3-1 on river, but I don't see this guy bluffing 25% of the time. I also prefer 3-betting flop to $120 or so and shutting down, but it feels like you got outplayed by a big hand or TT.
Getting 3-1 on river, but I don't see this guy bluffing 25% of the time. I also prefer 3-betting flop to $120 or so and shutting down, but it feels like you got outplayed by a big hand or TT.

I'd imagine TT+ raising from the button.

In all seriousness it's possible he has flopped a weak 2 pair that's been counterfeited on the river but I don't see him raising the river with anything that we beat.
Don't mind the river call. Any flopped two pair hand got counterfeited. Obv a queen beats you, but it doesn't look like he has a higher pocket pair. Some missed straights. I mean if he has A9 or a queen or a set, gg.
Villain posts $5 OTB. "SB" folds. "BB" (Hero) limps for $5 with :kd::9d:. Amazingly, only one other player in MP limps, everyone else folds. Villain checks his option on the button. ($35 pot)

This is a fold for me. We're OOP with a junky hand, regardless of the splashed pot, this can only lead to trouble.

Flop is :9c::6h::4d:. Hero leads for $20. MP player folds, villain raises to $45. Hero calls. ($125 pot)

Hmmm, kind of odd raise, I mean, he can't expect us to fold to that raise, right? Especially if he's ever played with you. So what does that raise mean? My guess is it means one of the following:

1. He has a monster like a flopped set, or perhaps two pair and is trying to build a pot with it
2. He has an open-ended straight draw (57 or 78) and is trying to take control of the pot and maybe get checked to on the turn for a free river

I can't find the fold for that small raise, but I also can't reraise here OOP, I call.

Turn is :qs:. Hero leads for $60, villain snap-calls. ($245 pot)

The snap call is usually a sign of a player drawing, not with a made hand. Our bet is kind of weak here, although I guess it was made for pot control?

River is :qc:. Hero leads for $60 (I honestly never thought I'd find a spot where I'd like the "same bet" play, but I did here...) Villain counts out a call, then raises to $150. Hero calls.

Your bet looks weak, so villain may think he can take this pot away with a raise or may just think whatever hand he has is the best hand. I'd call as well and expect to see him showdown either a counterfeited two pair or a straight draw that whiffed.
I totally agree with grandgnu here. Would think a higher pair than 9s raises pre, snapcall on turn is more likely a draw.
What I would probably do is check/call the river instead of bet/call.
The thinking here (convoluted as it was) went like this:

Preflop: K9s is a little too good of a hand to be just folding given the extra sauce from the "pot splash" - without the splash it's a fairly close but clear fold that far OOP IMO, with it I think we have to get in there. If we raise we are likely to get multiple callers OOP which will be awful - if we limp in EP though we have the potential to squeeze later and rep a big hand depending on who raises and further action (and in this particular game, squeezing can be quite effective.) Instead, we see practically no action. Villain checks option on the button facing only 2 limpers - given the action I would expect even a tight player to raise here with most or all pocket pairs, and at least the top half of Ax hands. I could be mistaken in that assumption though.

Flop: obv lead is obv - could have gone bigger but I wanted calls from middle/bottom pair. Villain raises very small which is curious - top of his range is a set which is very bad, but I have to discount heavily due to no raise preflop. Possible 2 pair, possible OESD trying to buy a free river, outside chance of a worse 9 looking to "see where he's at." I kind of wanted to 3-bet but I decided I would prefer to go with the "delayed 3-bet" on a non-gross turn. So, that's what I did.

Turn: the Q is about the biggest brick possible given the action so far, so I bet what I would have 3-bet on the flop - part pot-control, part value, really not a bluff. Villain snaps which to my mind strongly indicates the OESD, although any flopped 2-pair is probably a snap here as well. At this point I'm planning to check-evaluate most rivers, likely folding if villain can find a decent-sized barrel in this situation. It'll be pretty tough for him to bluff a missed draw, but possible.

River: another Q is a really interesting card. I just jumped ahead of all of villain's 2-pairs, and this card makes it REALLY hard for him to bluff if checked to, as he has to expect to get snapped off with virtually zero change in board texture since the flop. If I check I expect villain to check back almost all the time, and I'll have the winner. But, I think, if I fire a very small, weak bet here, villain may think he can rep a big hand with a bluff-raise, as I can't really show up with a big hand either. Such a bet has the added bonus of MAYBE squeezing out a crying call from a counterfeited 9. The way that villain raised and the sizing gave me some pause, but I decided that I couldn't abandon the plan now getting 5-1 and made the call.

Villain had 44, LOL. I guess all that was me ultra-leveling myself. :oops:

To the tighter players out there: what is the WORST hand you would raise with in villain's spot preflop? 2 limpers to you, you are last to act AND have the button, with an extra $20 dead money in the pot?
That, Sir, depends very much on stack sizing, Hero's reads on the villains and Hero's table image. The dead money makes blind stealing more profitable. If the villains are right, then the button raises ATC. If the villains are wrong, the button needs to be selective - - - I am thinking top 15% maybe. {Villain made ~$300 on his set mining play vs $35 on a successful blind stealing raise.}

Hero might think this is a really weird hand, but button isn't thinking that. Preflop forced limp with a weak pocket pair, flop set on a dry board and get donked into so villain min-raises. Turn gets a second donk bet and villain decides to slow play in position. River gets villain a third donk bet and now he check-raises for as much as he thinks Hero will call.

Hero seems to get lost in fancy play syndrome and forgot his villain read - this guy is semi passive and skilled. Those bets and their sizing meant a lot and I think we just missed reading much into all that information.

fwiw -- I'm probably limping pf, leading flop with $25 and calling a min-raise, check-calling the turn (depending on his bet size), and check-calling the river (also dependent on bet size).

As played, I think it's pretty easy to narrow villain's range by the river to either a Q, 66, 44, or T8. And T8 is probably putting in a larger river raise, because the amount of the raise here was designed to be called, and not a bluff. I'm not betting or check-calling the river, unless he bets a trivial amount.

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