Cash game players like 40 bb

Hero in button with K♠K♣ bets 2.5 bb

BB calls


BB leads out a little over 1/2 pot - 3 bb

What would you do as hero?

In book by a pro he took a line I would not, so wanted to ask here.


Pro jammed the flop and got looked up by a set of 2
No one gave that answer

  • For skill level can we assume players capable of making good poker decisions, but not necessarily professionals?
    – corsiKa
    Apr 10 '18 at 19:47
  • Author is a pro and did not qualify he put villain as a fish.
    – paparazzo
    Apr 10 '18 at 20:41
  • No one has answered the same as what pro did yet.
    – paparazzo
    Apr 11 '18 at 15:56
  • I'm not sure what to answer XDDDD. I'm tracking this question as fav, and also am asking to my mates. Apr 12 '18 at 18:41
  • what did the pro answer? Apr 16 '18 at 10:17

First you should consider villain's range. Jacks or higher pair would probably raise, so at best they have pocket 8's, but they would be better off check raising in this spot. I'd discount J8 and 2s, due to the stack sizes. It's more likely they have some sort of draw, such as T9s or QTs, or a pair and backdoor draw, JTs, A8s, etc.

With the stack sizes, I would raise here, to about 9BB, which should be about the size of the pot, and be willing to go all-in if they re-raise.

I'd be wanting to get it all-in on almost any turn, except a J or 8.

  • I asked. I think you are missing J8 and 22 in villain's range that could get the hero in trouble.
    – paparazzo
    Apr 10 '18 at 16:12
  • @paparazzo I think both are highly unlikely, considering they are playing short-stacked.
    – Herb
    Apr 10 '18 at 16:15
  • @HerbWolfe I dunno, it's a cash game and they can buy back. A tournament life would be different.
    – corsiKa
    Apr 10 '18 at 19:47
  • @corsiKa Sure, but neither of those hands are great, or even good, heads up, out of position, although they might be good for a re-raise, to keep a balanced range or project a certain image.
    – Herb
    Apr 10 '18 at 21:13

First of all, leading in a spot like this is probably a bad play. Hero has a range advantage, hence BB should not be betting, definitely not oop. BB is likely a fish.

Because BB is likely a fish, I think he is just too random here. There are a total of 9 combinations of sets and 9 combinations of J8. Not a lot. J2 or 82 are possible, but unlikely. I think BB will be betting a lot of top pairs and draws as well. We can conclude that we are ahead here most of the time. In my experience when a fish bets the flop like this he is not looking to fold to a raise. Since hero is both likely ahead and BB will likely not fold, we should raise. I'd raise on the small side, since the flop is so dry. Looking to get it in on most later streets.

EDIT: I think the pro's decision is really bad. For starters you are shoving way over the size of the pot on a very dry flop. Furthermore, you might get value from a good jack, but nothing worse is calling you. All the draws and weaker pairs you want to get value from is going to fold. By raising smaller you will make more money by keeping those holding in BB's range. You are essentially making the BB's decision very easy, which is probably never a good thing. BB can call with two pairs, sets and maybe AJ, KJ and fold the rest

  • Not 18 combinations of sets
    – paparazzo
    Apr 11 '18 at 13:56
  • Agreed. Unless you have some info about villain's meta, the standard play (assuming a generic fish) to gain max value would be call flop/jam turn or raise flop light and try to put it all if reraised or in the turn. May 7 '18 at 10:48

This is a very dry (relatively low) flop, so the villain could easily expect the flop to have missed hero. Villain could also have made a pair, set, or 2-pair. calling the pre-flop raise would make any 2-pair combos held by villain pretty unlikely, but possible.

I think the best move for hero is a call here, a raise will only get called by better hands (maybe top pair if the villain is loose). Not many cards that come on the turn could be very bad for Kings because there are few drawing hands that villain could be holding. The hero should call and expect to keep calling bets from hands like top-pair in future streets.

  • But there is a straight draw
    – paparazzo
    Apr 11 '18 at 14:00
  • editted, doesn't change the answer much
    – Clarko
    Apr 11 '18 at 18:04
  • 1
    Villain described as fish by author, according to OP. I do not agree that raise only gets called by better. Live/gambly fish hate folding and absolutely love draws in my experience. I agree with your idea of calling but I do think you could find some value in raising if you have reads on villain. Apr 12 '18 at 19:12
  • @SamCreamer OP did not describe villain as a fish. Ask yourself what hands would take this line?
    – paparazzo
    Apr 12 '18 at 19:45
  • 1
    I agree @SamCreamer, the lead on the flop is definitely not a good move by villain. This makes things more difficult for hero though because the line is not clear, i personally prefer to play it safe but there definitely is a case for a raise.
    – Clarko
    Apr 13 '18 at 3:18

Naturally I will not accept my own answer. My answer is not what the pro advised. I will post that in the question later.

The flop is not very coordinated. Villain could have 9T, J8, Jx, 8x, or 22. Villain got 2.6:1 to call pre - he could be calling very wide. Hero wanted action and got it. Seems like JJ or 88 would have raised pre. Maybe villain is on like 89 and wants to see where he is. Or is on a big J betting for value. Villain should only bet a 9T draw and there are only 16 of those.

A raise by the hero is just going to fold out the single pair hands he has beat. And get called by 2 pr plus hands. Yes you could get called by a big jack but a big jack is likely to bet the turn and might slow down. 9T would likely check that flop. If villain was betting a draw seems like they would have bet more for fold equity. JJ or 88 would likely have checked that flop. Villain led out in a spot he should not. A fish that wakes up a with monster flop would lead out here.

Type of hand I would just call hoping villain keeps betting. Best case if villain is on top pair and thinks it is good. Would even check back the flop hoping villain would bet the river. I think I would value bet / raise on the river of like 1/2 the pot.

Now that I have posted the spoiler pro jammed the flop. I don't like that overbet as it it probably only getting called by a better hand.

  • I had considered calling down, and would've recommended it as an option if stack sizes were deeper.
    – Herb
    Apr 10 '18 at 16:21
  • We're eager to see the true answer! (the answer from the pro you told in the question) Apr 17 '18 at 15:38

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