Turned a flush, now what?

AR_poker

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Playing $1/$3 last night at Saracen Casino in Pine Bluff, AR. Had a couple of interesting hands, wanted to share one and see what y'all think. 8-handed most of the night, including this one. I'm leaving town today for vacation, so won't be able to do it PAHWM-style. Just gonna post it all at once. Roast away.

Main villain (UTG) is a ~30yo reg, short hair, big beard. No real reads at the time this hand was played, as I'd been at the table for about 20mins and this is the first time we'd played together. He hadn't played a ton of hands during those 20mins, but it was clear that he comes to this casino a lot. The table was talking about a promo that the casino's been running during May where if you accumulate X amount of hours played in the poker room you get Y amount of dollars in rewards, and he was hoping to hit the max number (which I think is 120hrs in a month). Hero is the effective stack with ~$450.

Pre-flop:

UTG (villain) bets $20 (table standard open)
UTG-1 folds
LJ folds
HJ folds
CO folds
BTN folds
SB (hero) calls with Js9s
BB calls

Pre-flop thoughts:

Little loose. Usually do a normal amount of 3betting from the SB, but I was a little gunshy to 3bet an UTG open from an unknown with J9 and while still getting a feel for table dynamics. If this open came from HJ or later, I think I have an easier 3bet. Fold is probably better, but I think a call is fine. Life is short. Pots are fun.

Flop: ($55 in pot after rake)

Kd 8s 6s

Hero checks
BB checks
UTG bets $30
Hero calls
BB folds

Flop thoughts:

Easy continue to a ~half-pot bet on the flop. If the Kd was the Ks and one of the middle cards was a non-spade, I'd probably check-raise. But I decide against it here. I'm not sure where the bottom of villain's UTG opening range is, but I'm expecting AsKs, KsQs, AsQs, AsTs for sure, maybe KsTs and QsTs, so I could be overflushed here sometimes. Those top-pair-plus-flush-draw-hands have me basically dead, and I don't see a reason to narrow villain's range just yet. And if villain 3bets with his flopped sets or top pairs, with or without a spade, I'm letting myself get blown off a decent amount of equity. With villain being able to have a decent number of flush draws, plus other strong hands (KK, AA, AK, 88, etc.), plan is to call, check-evaluate on villain's range cards, and lead on favorable turn cards for my range. Though in hindsight, the only range cards I might want to lead on would be Tx, 8x, 7x, and maybe 5x, if I should have a turn leading range at all.

Turn: ($115 in pot)

Kd 8s 6s (Qs)

Hero checks
UTG bets $60
Hero calls

Turn thoughts:

We get there (yay) on a slight range card for villain (boo). Villain continues, which is fine. It's nice that AsQs, KsQs, and QsTs are now blocked by the board. With his value, he can target my weaker Kx or Qx, charge my 1-spade hands, open-enders (like 9d7d or JdTd, if I have them). I was pretty torn about calling or raising/jamming. Yeah, we still lose to AsKs, AsTs, and KsTs, but that's not only three combos. More if we add in more suited aces--sometimes they'll be here, sometimes they won't. Villain's KK, QQ, 88, AA, AK, etc. will likely all be firing again here. If villain is double-barreling his value, his semi-bluffs, and his air, we're crushing that range. Villain can have all AsXx, KsKx, AsQx, 88 which we can target for value/deny equity to. I've got $400 behind when facing the turn bet, so I was trying to think of a raise size. With $175 in the pot at this point, I didn't see a size besides all-in that (a) I'd take with bluffs and value and (b) doesn't give us a gross river SPR. And, I thought villain would play pretty perfectly facing a shove. Again, easily could've been gunshyness. Plan was to block bet blank rivers and (likely) call-off if shoved on. But not sure if instead we should be check-jamming the river. With a non-spade/non-scare-card river, villain will likely fire again with flushes, sets, and KQ. Might get thin and bet-fold AA, AK, but those hands might just play it safe and check back. And I'm not sure how many logical bluffs villain has through this line--maybe something like AdJd or AdTd? Hands like that? I've shown a lot of stickiness in the hand, those might just check-back the river as a give-up.

River: ($235 in pot)

Kd 8s 6s (Qs) (7s)

UTG bets $125
Hero folds

River thoughts:

Ugh. I think villain has three combos of AsKx and AsQx, three combos of KsQx. Three combos of AsAx. Two combos of KsKx. This sizing was so annoying. I think my hand is a little under-repped through this line, but I think the pool doesn't fire the third barrel when a four-flush comes in without having the flush that often. I don't have all that many AsXx hands through this line, so I think villain can bet his KsXx pretty safely. And I'm expecting all reasonable AsAx, AsKx, KsXx, AsXx hands that villain has to take this line. I'm really curious how villain is ranging me, Kx, KQ, 88 or 66 that were planning a turn check-raise absent a flush card coming, turned flushes, etc. It's just too easy for me to have the As or Ks if villain doesn't have one/both those cards for this to be a slam-dunk bluff spot. If I have KsJs instead of Js9s, I think this is a call. As played, I think it's a fold. If villain turned a non-flush value hand into a bluff (or just ran a straight triple-barrel), good on him, and I got owned. We'll never know!

Too nitty on the river? Too gunshy by not check-jamming the turn? Though who knows, maybe the 7s on the end saved me money against villain's turned AsXs and KsXs flushes.
 

JustinInMN

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Yikes to say the least.

I hate the call pre with only one dollar in the pot. You are being laid 23:19 with a hand you will often be worse than 2:1 against or more, heads up. This is just lighting money on fire.

The flop call is somewhat defensible as played. The pot is laying you 2:1 and you have a flush draw and some other backdoor possibilities.

The turn should be a shove, you played this hand to win a big pot with a flush. If you are scared of :as::ks: then your preflop call is even worse than I originally described. Villain can have more combos with either :as: or :ks: and you want to charge the maximum there. You calling the turn is probably going to shut villain down on the river unless he improves, might as well raise and see if you get to play for stacks with the hand you were trying to make.

As played I like the fold on the river, but it only serves again to underscore how horrendous the preflop decision is.

Hands like J9s need to flop at least a flush draw to continue, which you did get, but you really need the pot to be bigger to justify it. If there were 2 or 3 callers after the EP raise, I could see the call, but you don't want to be heads up and out of position with horrible pot odds to make this call pre.

So in my estimation, you went bad decision, good decision, bad decision, good decision in this hand.

But if you make the flush and aren't going to play for it, you need to really devalue your perception of middle suited hands.
 

grebe

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Check raise the turn. You were lucky he continued, you were given the golden goose and you set it free. Too many times, he will check it back on any river and you have to sheepishly turn over the winner. CHECK RAISE TURN! The river decision doesn't matter, because you missed your opportunity to get paid.

You know the combos that beat you, yet you miss this opportunity? This is a major leak, I think. Look at all the hands that you beat that will have to call you, but you are ahead....AK, AQ, KQ, AsX...on and on.
 

Legend5555

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Fold pre.

As played raise turn. You have 330 behind into 235. So... I guess just jam. Any other size and you aren't folding any river anyway.
 

AR_poker

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Check raise the turn. You were lucky he continued, you were given the golden goose and you set it free. Too many times, he will check it back on any river and you have to sheepishly turn over the winner. CHECK RAISE TURN! The river decision doesn't matter, because you missed your opportunity to get paid.

You know the combos that beat you, yet you miss this opportunity? This is a major leak, I think. Look at all the hands that you beat that will have to call you, but you are ahead....AK, AQ, KQ, AsX...on and on.
I think this is perceptive. When I've got value, I can be way too focused on "trying to keep villain wide" instead of shifting into "stack villain's top of range (or near top of range) with my top of range".
 

JustinInMN

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Hey, that's an improvement on my normal ratio of bad decision, bad decision, bad decision, bad decision!
Problem is in proportion, the turn decision is really super expensive. Also consider if villain had missed the flush, it's tough to collect one more street of value on the river, so it's expensive there as well.
 
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