Tuesday, March 13, 2007

The Check/Min-Raise in NL

The check / min-raise in NL Holdem is something that has very little utility. If you find yourself doing a lot of it, something is probably wrong with your game. I rarely check raise in cash games, mostly because I don't like to slow play a lot. If I did go for a check raise, it would be for much more than the minimum raise amount in nearly all cases. I like to try to get bad players to make very poor decisions. When you minimum raise someone in NL, you are taking the minimum amount of odds away from the other player. This makes their decision to call the the bet, minimally wrong. I do slow play some of the time in very specific situations. The hand below is very interesting because not only did I slow play it (twice), I check/min-raised twice in the same hand. It appears to have worked pretty good for this exact situation, but let me know what you think.

Full Tilt Poker Game #1980865537: Table Lineshack - $1/$2 - No Limit Hold'em - 15:46:50 ET - 2007/03/13
Seat 1: swinggdoc ($100.65)
Seat 2: camdogg29 ($83.50)
Seat 3: JHarr1219 ($213.35)
Seat 4: gadman122 ($210.50)
Seat 5: TheStudentJones ($171.50)
Seat 6: HoldemPop ($92)
Seat 7: Blinders ($194.40)
Seat 8: tiger247 ($120.95)
Seat 9: JUST_GILBEAR ($143.15)
TheStudentJones posts the small blind of $1
HoldemPop posts the big blind of $2
The button is in seat #4
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to Blinders [6d 6s]
Blinders calls $2
tiger247 folds
swinggdoc folds
camdogg29 folds
JHarr1219 folds
gadman122 raises to $8
TheStudentJones folds
HoldemPop folds

Set mining opportunity against a well-stacked opponent.

Blinders calls $6

*** FLOP *** [3s 3d 6h]

Now that is a monster flop. It meets enough of the criteria where a slow play could be right.

Blinders checks
gadman122 bets $14
Blinders raises to $28

It is going to be hard for this guy to believe I hit this flop hard. I go for the min-raise because I do not want to scare him off if he is c-betting with overs. If he has a strong hand, I am giving him the chance to pop me back. I want to look a little weakish here I guess.

gadman122 calls $14

At this point, I am planning on leading out for 1/2-2/3 the pot no matter what turns.

*** TURN *** [3s 3d 6h] [Ac]

Change of plans. I want to look like the Ace scared me. If he has the Ace he will certainly bet, or he may bluff behind without an Ace.

Blinders checks
gadman122 bets $44

He has the Ace or is bluffing. I go for the min-raise again, because I think he will call it if he has the Ace. If he is bluffing, I doubt I can extract anymore. The second check/min-raise of the hand really has to confuse this guy as well. He might put me on trying to push him off and call with 77-KK.

Blinders raises to $88

gadman122 folds

Uncalled bet of $44 returned to Blinders
Blinders mucks
Blinders wins the pot ($160)
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot $163 Rake $3
Board: [3s 3d 6h Ac]

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At 7:25 AM, Blogger WindBreak247 said...

Now I'm just your average, run of the mill donkey, but I think you have to call the turn and then bet out on the river. Two min check-raises in one hand indicates, to me, a complete donkey, albeit a complete donkey with a hand WAY better than mine.

The check-raise on the flop is a standard donkey feeler, and would give him confidence when his A, or at the very least a card you're scared of, comes on the turn. Its a horribly weak play, and I really love it there when you've flopped a boat. After the turn you're only behind to 33 and AA, and you have to think about extracting maximum value. I would be sure to lock down his $44 on the turn by calling it, then either bet out an irresistable to call bet on the river, or go for the 1/2-3/4 pot bet that could look like a value bet steal. I think with you calling the turn it either indicates you have an A or don't believe he has an A, so its completely feasible to get a call depending on what he thinks your call means.

Of course if he folds on the river you didn't gain anything, but at least you gave yourself a shot by not completely convincing him he was beat. If he has Ax worthy of a preflop raise, he may think he's good and maybe even that he's trapping you. Of course if he's got 99-QQ, the A probably killed your action.

At 8:57 AM, Blogger Blinders said...


I think you are suggesting the best line here. Call the turn and lead out on the river. The pot seems bigger on the river once the $44 x 2 goes in, so a value bet will get called a good portion of the time. With my line, I am looking to stack the other guy (hoping he calls the turn or re-raises), but I often will play it exactly how you suggest.

At 10:15 AM, Blogger smokkee said...

minraises make baby jesus cry.

At 12:14 AM, Blogger Approche Pratique said...

Easy raise preflop. And I'd rather check-call turn and check-raise(AI) river here.


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