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  #21  
Old 12-28-2005, 06:44 PM
StellarWind StellarWind is offline
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Default Re: 3-bet J10s against good player?

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Are you suggesting that this is too weak?

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A good player can fold the best hand sometimes without making the JTs 3-bet +EV. The key is not to fold too many better hands.

There are no easy answers here because being a good heads up player is not easy.

A guideline I use when analyzing is to consider how I would play my entire range of hands in a given situation. In particular I think about what percentage of the time I will be folding. Then I ask myself if I'm happy with that considering the pot odds and the chance that I started with the best hand.

For example I post a hand a couple of days ago where I folded AQ unimproved on the turn after being raised on the flop. I've thought some more about that hand. If I'm folding AQ (nut no pair) it logically follows that I must be folding all of my worse hands too. That means I am folding 41% of my preflop range if Villain decides to bluff raise the flop and bet the turn.

This is a very disturbing number because it looks like folding AQ may be exploitable error in the sense that it is profitable for him to risk 2 BB by autobluffing any worthless hand.

Now if his PFR range was AA, KK, QQ, Q [img]/images/graemlins/spade.gif[/img]5 [img]/images/graemlins/spade.gif[/img] then he would very rarely have a bluffing hand. It would be correct for him to autobluff the Granny but it would be equally correct for me to let him have it due to terrible pot odds. But Villain's actual range is enormous and my big unimproved aces are very often the best hand. I certainly have fine pot odds to call AQ against an autobluffer.

Another factor is that I will often pair my hand or pick up a gutshot on the turn that will allow me to see the river. If I make it a rule to showdown any big ace that turns a gutshot then it cuts down on his bluff odds a lot.

Overall my conclusion is that my turn fold of AQ is pretty marginal from a theoretical perspective. Probably I'm folding a few too many hands against an opponent who plays correctly. If I believe that conclusion then the cure is to start calling a few more hands and obviously I want those to be the best available, meaning I should call down with AQ and fold with AJ or worse.

Of course my opponent is not a theory. He's a real player and I have a read. What is right in theory needs to be adjusted for the way Villain actually likes to play. But I am making my adjustments from the correct starting point.

Having played and analyzed more hands against Villain I now realize that I probably made a bad fold. The revised read is that he bets very aggressively to steal pots but often misses value bets with weak pairs. In other words if he actually had A6 (bottom pair) for his PFR I might be getting a free card here. Accordingly he is bluffing too much compared to his value betting and I should be calling more hands than theory requires, not less hands.
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  #22  
Old 12-28-2005, 10:05 PM
cartman cartman is offline
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Default Re: 3-bet J10s against good player?

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This is a very disturbing number because it looks like folding AQ may be exploitable error in the sense that it is profitable for him to risk 2 BB by autobluffing any worthless hand.


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You are right that vs a player who will always checkraise the flop and bet the turn regardless of his hand that folding AQ and all worse hands would be a mistake. But as you correctly pointed out later in your post, your opponent is not a theory and you would certainly not fold AQ and all worse hands once you realized or even suspected that he was using that approach.

I think there are lots of recommendations around here to do or not do certain things because "we will get run over" or because "we will be easy to play against" that are misguided because they are based on the assumption that our opponent will both correctly assess AND correctly exploit the vulnerability of our actions. This is a leap that I am not prepared to make until the opponent proves it to me.

Until our opponent gives us reason to do otherwise, I think it is usually the best policy to take whatever action we think has the highest EV for a given situation with minimal regard to the implications that action may have on future hands. If and only if he demonstrates his ability to take appropriate countermeasures should we worry about the repercussions.

Cartman
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  #23  
Old 12-28-2005, 10:27 PM
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Default Re: 3-bet J10s against good player?

pair of jacks loses to pair of aces
jack high loses to ace high

something something about hand ranges and equity %
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  #24  
Old 12-28-2005, 10:51 PM
dave44 dave44 is offline
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Default Re: 3-bet J10s against good player?

Stellar, I too realized that similar aspects of my game were exploitable by an aggressive player. After experimenting a good deal with calling down or playing back a bit more, I've found that usually you can pinpoint at least which players you can lighten up against. I still feel like trying to keep my game unexploitable is very important against the aggressive players, especially as I play higher.
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  #25  
Old 12-28-2005, 11:54 PM
Wynton Wynton is offline
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Default Re: 3-bet J10s against good player?

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Until our opponent gives us reason to do otherwise, I think it is usually the best policy to take whatever action we think has the highest EV for a given situation with minimal regard to the implications that action may have on future hands. If and only if he demonstrates his ability to take appropriate countermeasures should we worry about the repercussions.

Cartman

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I completely agree with this.

Having said that, I'm actually reassured by all of this that I'm not making a big mistake, in general, by mucking J10s rather than 3-betting, as discussed in the OP. I think that there are certain situations when it makes sense, but I probably need to be pretty selective.

Thanks all.
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  #26  
Old 12-29-2005, 01:47 AM
StellarWind StellarWind is offline
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Default Re: 3-bet J10s against good player?

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misguided because they are based on the assumption that our opponent will both correctly assess AND correctly exploit the vulnerability of our actions.

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Villain doesn't have to assess anything or be any kind of genius. For many of these LAGs attacking tight players (or all players) comes naturally. They just do it and you either counter it properly or you don't.

The problem comes in when Hero is being exploitably weak and doesn't realize it. Suddenly the LAG has the best of it and Hero doesn't understand what is happening to him. Folding "too many" hands is fine if Villain doesn't bluff enough. It's a deliberate strategy to make extra profit by exploiting his failure to bluff.

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Until our opponent gives us reason to do otherwise, I think it is usually the best policy to take whatever action we think has the highest EV for a given situation with minimal regard to the implications that action may have on future hands.

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Of course taking the highest EV action is the best policy but that is beside the point. None of what I wrote is about future hands, only the current hand. If Villain is bluffing correctly--not excessively, but correctly--then a policy of folding too many hands will cause an immediate EV loss on the current hand.

Of course if Villain recognizes your leak he may exploit it by further increasing his bluffing. This will cause him losses if you adjust and begin calling at least the correct amount. Otherwise he devastates you.

The underlying concept is that in heads up play there is a correct amount to bluff and a correct amount to call. This is an equilibrium where neither player can exploit the other. The first player to disturb the equilibrium is going to suffer losses. But if one player insists on playing incorrectly and never adjusts then the other player can either continue playing normally and make a profit or he can can begin playing incorrectly in the opposite direction and make extra profit. For example, if Villain decides to bluff too much you can exploit him by calling too much. But if you insist on calling too much then he can exploit you by not bluffing at all.

Holdem is so complicated that figuring out exactly what is correct play is extremely difficult. But it is still important to try and think about it to create some guidelines for your play. Then you can take that guideline and adjust it for the way your opponent actually plays. This way if you are assuming that your opponent is too passive then you at least realize what you are doing and can make adjustments if it isn't working out.

The "what would happen if Villain always bluffed" question is a tool for recognizing incorrect play. If you are calling the proper amount then you should expect that he can't hurt you this way. If you are calling too much he also can't hurt you. But if the answer is that you are losing large amounts of money that obviously belongs to you then the inescapable conclusion is that you fold too much. Now you need to ask yourself why folding too much is the default play in this situation. If you have a good answer to that question then go ahead. But at least you've thought about it.

An example of a standard play for many of us that is "folding too much" is checkcall, checkcall, betfold with a moderate made hand. There is no way this is mathematically correct in many situations where it is applied. But it is definitely true that a wide range of players don't bluff raise enough in this situation. This in turn is an exploitation on their part of the fact that a wide range of players call river raises much too much. But it is still worth remembering that the betfold play is incorrect and remain wary lest you become the exploited instead of the exploiter.
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  #27  
Old 12-29-2005, 02:21 AM
cartman cartman is offline
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Default Re: 3-bet J10s against good player?

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Of course taking the highest EV action is the best policy but that is beside the point.

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Although this may seem like an obvious statement, I think it is a debate that we engage in every time we advocate a line that is immediately incorrect mathematically because of metagame reasons. A frequent example of this is the recommendation to peel the flop and fold unimproved on the turn even when this is immediately -EV so that we don't get run over.


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None of what I wrote is about future hands, only the current hand.

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I wasn't disagreeing with what you wrote. I was just elaborating on what I thought you correctly pointed out later in your post regarding our opponent not being a theory.


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If Villain is bluffing correctly--not excessively, but correctly--then a policy of folding too many hands will cause an immediate EV loss on the current hand.

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But we can only make decisions as to which line we think has the highest immediate EV on the information available to us at the time. I am sure at the time that you folded your AQ you thought that was the decision with the highest immediate EV. Based on your estimate of the relevant factors at the time, your fold was "correct". If you later learn that he loves to checkraises the flop and bet the turn with weak draws and air, then the next time you were confronted with the same situation you would probably make a "correct" call.

Excepting tilt or some other illogical catalyst, if we are seeking only to maximize immediate EV we will always make what we estimate to be the "correct" decision at the time. It is only later that we may change our assessment of our opponent and understand that if we had only known then what we know now, we would have realized that what we thought was a "correct" decision was probably actually "incorrect".

Cartman
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  #28  
Old 12-29-2005, 03:23 AM
StellarWind StellarWind is offline
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Default Re: 3-bet J10s against good player?

[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]

Of course taking the highest EV action is the best policy but that is beside the point.

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Although this may seem like an obvious statement, I think it is a debate that we engage in every time we advocate a line that is immediately incorrect mathematically because of metagame reasons. A frequent example of this is the recommendation to peel the flop and fold unimproved on the turn even when this is immediately -EV so that we don't get run over.

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I disagree with your interpretation of this example.

It sometimes happens that I make a play with a metagame purpose. Like a humiliating sexy whose purpose is partially to instill fear and intimidate an opponent into incorrect passive play on future hands. But "metagame" is actually a code name for psychology in this case.

But the loose flop peel is something else entirely. Just as there is tension between bluffing and bluffcatching, there is also tension between loose flop calls and marginal turn bets. A flop call that is slightly -EV on paper becomes +EV when you factor in the reality that sometimes you get a free card. So mathematically correct strategy is to rely on this and make a few extra calls with the "best of the rest". Never making these calls is exploitable because it allows Villain to take too many free cards and thereby avoid paying off my better hands.

But I absolutely am not trying to change the way Villain plays. Instead I exploit whatever I see. If Villain bets the turn too much then I fold more flops, pound him with turn value checkraises, and checkcall turns I would otherwise feel the need to bet.

On the other hand if Villain is a free card addict then my loose peels multiply like rabbits because one bet buys two cards.

But against a good player I cannot sustain a strategy of exploitation because he will adjust. I make whatever "loose" peels I think is the correct number for a given flop structure and opposing hand range.

Note that I have structured the discussion around the case where Villain is autobetting the flop with position. I could just have easily written an analogous explanation of loose flop calls versus OOP autobets, versus checkraises of our autobet, versus stabs at unraised pots, or whatever. The details vary but the underlying concept is the same. There is a right amount for him to be aggressive and a right amount of loose calls. Anyone who deviates can be exploited, but if Villain is messing up in a predictable way you can adjust your own play to exploit him.
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  #29  
Old 12-29-2005, 04:18 AM
wackjob wackjob is offline
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Default Re: 3-bet J10s against good player?

I agree that a lot of people overvalue J10s in the SH game. Standard poker theory says that suited connectors do well in a multi-way pot, not HU. J10s is seriously dominated by most TAG's UTG, UTG+1 opening ranges and 3-betting with a hand like this will almost always get you HU in a domianted position. Easy fold every time for me.
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  #30  
Old 12-29-2005, 05:18 AM
kiddo kiddo is offline
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Default Re: 3-bet J10s against good player?

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You need to start an argument for isolating with JTs by identifying an edge you hope to exploit. For example:

1. Villain openraises 50% of his hands. Now we have reasonable hand strength.

2. Villain is weak and incapable of continuing past the turn when he fails to pair up.

3. Villain is a world champion but he believes we only 3-bet with AA-QQ.

Or whatever. But you must start with something.

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This is 100% correct. if we want to close the gap we got to start with something more then "I got position". A good player is the last 1 we should 3bet.

That said, I prefer JTs over A8o or KTo in this spot, because of domination. But maybe I am overestimating JTs, its hard to estimate how much we lose when we flop 2nd pair or get outdrawn on turn or river.
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