Thursday, June 5, 2008

Showing restraint on the flop

When I am on top of my game, I think I have a good balance between aggression and restraint. I notice that when I am experiencing downswings, that's when I am committing too many chips preflop and going a little too aggro with overpairs. Sometimes, I just have to remember that an overpair is just one pair. It sounds so simple but sometimes, it requires so much discipline to remember. Other times, it's not as hard. I felt that in the hand below, I think I showed good restraint by not c-betting the flop like most people would in this instance.

PokerStars Game #17931169064: Hold'em No Limit ($2/$4) - 2008/06/05 - 11:02:28 (ET)
Table 'Amneris' 6-max Seat #3 is the button
Seat 1: ANGEL2326 ($749.70 in chips)
Seat 3: Dirty Vizzer ($480 in chips)
Seat 4: n1stunna77 ($434.50 in chips)
Seat 5: Skyrre ($400 in chips)
Seat 6: softas ($406.15 in chips)
n1stunna77: posts small blind $2
Skyrre: posts big blind $4

*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to Dirty Vizzer [Qs Qc]
softas: folds
ANGEL2326: calls $4
Dirty Vizzer: raises $14 to $18
n1stunna77: folds
Skyrre: calls $14
ANGEL2326: calls $14

*** FLOP *** [Js 9s Tc]
Skyrre: checks
ANGEL2326: checks
Dirty Vizzer: checks

I obviously considered betting here. But I was playing fairly well and even though for a split second, I was going to cbet, I asked myself, what would the cbet accomplish? Of course, I can take down the pot if the two other players completely missed this flop but this is one of those flops that hits someone pretty hard. Plus, I figured if someone had a hand like AK, he actually only has 3 outs instead of 6 since the K would give me a straight. Even with an overpair, I more or less just have a draw here against most hands that would call my bet. Of course, there's the flush draw but I just didn't want to unnecessarily build the pot here.

*** TURN *** [Js 9s Tc] [Ad]
Skyrre: bets $48
ANGEL2326: folds
Dirty Vizzer: calls $48

Of course, the turn was a very gross A. I obviously considered folding here but I also thought that the BB's bet was interesting in that if he hit the ace, it seems odd that he would bet out. Plus, $48 is approximately the amount I woulda used to cbet the flop on normal instances anyways so I decided that it wouldn't hurt to use the chips I saved on the flop to see how he acts on the river.

*** RIVER *** [Js 9s Tc Ad] [Kd] <--- golden gloves baby!!!!
Skyrre: bets $100
Dirty Vizzer: raises $100 to $200
Skyrre said, "yeah. please catch more 3 outers" <--- amen
Skyrre: calls $100

*** SHOW DOWN ***
Dirty Vizzer: shows [Qs Qc] (a straight, Ten to Ace)
Skyrre: shows [Kc Qh] (a straight, Ten to Ace)
Skyrre collected $275 from pot
Dirty Vizzer collected $275 from pot

As he pointed out, I obv got lucky here. It woulda sucked if I had caught the 8. The turn call is obv questionable but I felt that with no cbet on the flop, my hand was concealed enough that I thought the villain could be betting with worse hands here. If a blank river comes and he fires out a $100 bet, I would fold because that's a pretty strong bet. But I believe that by not cbetting the flop, I saved myself a good chunk of chips (though in the end, it doesn't matter but that's not the point). More often than not, people will cbet the flop with an overpair and an OESD and that coulda gotten me in a lot of trouble since I surely woulda gotten checkraised and then I'd be in a very awkward situation.

Sometimes, you just have to look at the texture of the flop and think about what you would accomplish with a bet. In this instance, I felt that the cons outweighed the pros of betting the flop and so I was able to contain my aggression on the flop. Again, if a blank river comes, I would just fold, knowing that this hand only cost me $18 pre and $48 post flop for a total of $66. If I had bet out on the flop for approximately $48 and then get checkraised, now what? Of course, you can say you fold your overpair and OESD but that's a bummer because you coulda seen a free card if you had checked. If you call, the hand coulda cost you a lot more if you didn't catch. Reeling in the aggression is sometimes the hardest thing to do in a 6 max game but I know that when I am playing my best game, I seem to balance the aggression and restraint real well.


Poker Brian said...

Good point Alan, sometimes the easiest points are the ones most overlooked (by me especially).

im kinda bothered by his comment actually. He cold called $4 and another $14 OOP with a possible dominated hand, unless he figured you were bluffing with any random A-x. Hard to tell from one hand I suppose.

He checks his nut straight on a double sooted board, which I feel is bad on his part, I think you stick a bet out there when you hit like that to protect your straight. So in essence this check lets you "Get there".

He bets $48 on the turn when an A pops (finally protecting that straight) but I don't question the bet, since he obvious wants value for his straight and get you off of any Flush draws. Personally if I didnt know his hand already I'd put him on 2 pair A-J with his actions thus far. So assuming that I would figure I have 8 outs to call his $48 bet with. Its still a gambool, but I'd probably do it.

On your part, I think you did the right thing by showing restraint. Its very tempting to bet an overpair with a straight draw like that, because your taking a chance that someone will fold 2 flush cards. I doubt someone with A-2ss would fold to any bet (and some will call all-in bet).

Good hand Alan!

SirFWALGMan said...

yer a freaking chase donkey.

$mokkee said...

that's hilarious coming from wawfuls.

WillWonka said...

I'm trying to think if you are being results oriented.

Like it was said above, KQ is not really a hand that you would put him on.

What does cbetting do? It builds the pot when you are typically ahead. You're making flush draws pay.. hands like AT, AJ pay and of course, like you said you could take the pot right there which is never bad.

This is probably what seperates people like me (low limit monkeys) from people like you (good players) knowing when to exercise pot control and when not to.