Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Protecting your hand

I almost always 3-bet with TT+ and AQ+ regardless of position because these hands figure to be the best hand preflop.

My reraise is for value, yes. But it also defines and protects my hand, which is sometimes a difficult concept for me to understand because it isn't strictly a value bet or a bluff.

What I mean to say is that if JJ figures to be best against a cutoff raiser and I'm on the button, why not cold call preflop and extract value on later streets?

One reason is that I want to get worse hands to call, like drawing hands or high cards.

Another reason is that I want to know when I'm beat. JJ is the nuts preflop until I have reason to believe it's not. There's value in 3-betting preflop until a 4-bet tells me there isn't. Many players won't 4-bet with less than the very best hands, and against those types of players I should fold my JJ preflop.

The same goes for check-raising with hands like K9o on a K86 rainbow board. I most likely have the best hand, and many times I'll want to go ahead and take control, win the hand right then or get draws to call at a bad price.

There's also merit in check-calling a continuation bet and playing the turn from there. But calling instead of raising simply because I believe I have the best hand on average isn't necessarily the best play.


Paddymctaff said...

I think about this alot. With the JJ hand against that specific Villan, shouldnt we be flatting to keep in all the hands we crush? And with the K9 on that flop, isnt raising folding out all we beat and only better calls (pretty much). Playing oop obv sucks though and there are def benefits to 'taking it down' now. Even though FTOP would argue against that I have seen a few vids recenty where good players have said that it is better to win it now than continue calling barrels oop with no idea weather we are being bluffed or value towned...

Lucypher said...

Gnome, I couldn't agree more.
3-betting pre-flop should be norm for TT and JJ. This tactic has worked very well for me, too.