July 29, 2014

Daily Poker Quiz

More Sites from DHQ: InstantPokerMoney.com | BCPoker


Game type: $75 MTT, Full Tilt Poker
Stage of tourney: Fairly early
Your image: n/a
Opponent’s image: n/a
Your hand: 9♠8♠

The setup: You’re new to the table when this hand comes up – you get 98s in the BB. A EP players raises 3x, one player calls, and you call in the BB. You flop a great draw:


Action is on you. What’s your play?

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37 COMMENTS  (Jump to comment form)


Perfect stack sizes for check-raise all-in




With an early position preflop aggressor and a button caller, this looks like, provided the button didn’t hit the 10 which he very well could have, a great spot for a squeeze play.




With an early position preflop aggressor and a button caller, this looks like, provided the button didn’t hit the 10 which he very well could have, a great spot for a squeeze play.



I’d slap myself for playing this hand at all then I’d lead.

Given this early in a tournament format check-raising all in into bigger stacks seems like a terrible idea to me.

We may have an open ended straight draw + flush draw but with two other people in the pot and the fact only a six gives us the nuts here I’d be very cautious.

In fact as a relative short stack I think playing this hand out of position against a raiser and a caller is terrible play. I wouldn’t mind opening with this hand, but calling in the BB with a small stack? Ridiculous.

If the original raiser decides to play this hand they are likely to be pot committed, so a check raise against them has very little fold equity.

Anyway I’d fold pre-flop. But in this situation the only chance you have is to lead hoping to get the others to fold.

What you want to pray for here is a short stack original raiser deciding not to risk the entire tournament on something like AK here and the button who called light believing your show of confidence and folding his broadway / weak ace / whatever he had that didn’t hit.



@ McGowish

Google “squeeze play”.



blackfair, how much would you lead here?

IMO, anything that isn’t a fold or getting your whole stack involved here is a disaster.
And if you lead against the preflop raiser which looks fishy in itself, C reraises, and you shove, he is priced in on what looks like a bluff/draw by you.

With check-raise: If you check, C raises 1/2 to 3/4 pot, G calls, and you shove, they both have the option of folding and in my mind an increased probability for G to fold.



excuse me *increased probability of C to fold*



@ Blackfair: When approaching situations like this, if you think that a 6 is the only card you want to come out (and you should explain why you would not want a J to come out I’m a little confused about your reasoning there) then you are really hurting your ability to play drawing and medium-big hands for value. If a spade comes out and you lose to a higher flush, you lose to a higher flush. That’s poker.

It’s early in the tournament and we need to double up. So figure out how to make it easier for your opponents to fold to your hand that is likely to make it by the river even if they don’t fold. It would be nice if we could just play QQ-AA and hit top set with them, but a call from the BB with two in front of us is not bad with 98s when the blinds are still pretty low.

With that said, I make a simple out calculation and see that I have 15 outs which makes me about 60% to win by the river. Sure, that’s a little high. But if I’m up against AKx etc. then all I need is a pair to win. Then, I check-raise all-in. Might as well get my money in the middle while I’m ahead. If both players check behind, then I get to see the turn for free. The reason that I do NOT lead into this is that if I bet the flop (remember: it’s not a bluff when I’m a favorite to win) with say, a $500 bet, I don’t have enough behind to push someone out when the turn blanks.

And don’t blame me when you try this, get called by a big pair, and watch the turn and river brick. Poker necessitates gambling, especially early in a tourney when you need chips.



I’d check-fold, theres no way of telling what will come out. I’d just play good poker and assume I would end up with 9 high.



This is an obvious check-raise situation. Get it in while we’re ahead. Either take it down, or be the favorite to double/triple up with all the chips in the middle.

If they check behind (which I doubt) and the turn bricks, then check-call the turn. try to minimize the investment and get to a river as cheap as possible.



CR AI, imo.

I think Loki articulates it best, but obviously McGowish is doing the same action so I’m with both of them.

I would lead this if we were deeper and I still had enough FE on the turn if i were flatted, but w/ just over 2k, it’s just not enough.

I also agree that leading here looks so weak. You’re leading into a PF raiser and a smooth call on the button from the big blind….how strong would we possibly be outta the blind? With such a coordinated board, it screams draw and I’d almost expect someone to ship it in over us. After all, it’s not called a weak lead for nothing!

Also, I think our CR shove has added fold equity if the preflop raiser leads out on flop and again gets flatted by the button. If we shove here, the opener may be a little hesitant to continue knowing someone is left to act behind and may lay down the best hand.



I voted check call, I consider this a rather dubious decision after reading Loki’s excellent post. @ Mare, there is a reason why check folding was not an option on the quiz, if check folding even entered your thinking pre-flop then why even call? Not knocking you, I screwed up here to, I think this is an excellent opportunity to chip up, which should be a goal in the early going.



CRAI… but isn’t the quiz wrong? 3 x raise 300 + call 300 + SB 50 + your 300 = 950 not 650 in the middle



Seemed like a fairly straightforward CR spot to me.



I would normally prefer to lead out so I can price my draw. With 17 likely clean outs, and possibly the 8 or 9 being clean if opponent is on Ax with no pair yet and caller possibly on better or worse ace, KQ, small PP (hopefully no set yet, but we’ll find out), then pricing it at 2/3 pot with a donk bet feels good here. On a metagame, I’ll get some info about how much the raiser protects his raises. If he folds here, I might float more flops OOP to donk into him again.

Check raise will certainly pick up some chips and help with image for later (“I’m tricky! You’d better check behind!”), so it’s a good play, too.

In this case, if they check behind, you’ll have a hard time getting it all in if you hit. If you bet 400 here and get one caller, the pot’s 1450 with 1825 left behind, so you can check the turn if you miss, block bet it, shove if you don’t want a call, or, if you do hit, say Jd, you can bet 700, leaving you 1125 behind, and AT or JJ+ have a pretty easy call with a 2850 pot.

If this is a thinking player, though, they’re going to shove over your 400 bet to price you out of the draw, but you still have odds to call if you want to. I hate going out on a draw that misses, even on a monster draw like this, but sometimes, you gotta go with it.



Don, 17 clean outs??
9 spades to the flush
3 jacks to the straight(spades already counted)
3 sixes to the straight(spades already counted)

15 outs that figure to be good not counting any 9 or 8. Your at about 55% to improve by the river. Check raise all in.



You’re right, I doubled the J and 6. Still, if you want to double up and get a call, aren’t you better off positioning the bets to make an all-in an easy call here by the river?

If you have an idiot with AK, he’s not likely to call unless he’s got the AK of spades, which would really suck, and if you have a thinking opponent with even top pair, he’s going to notice you’re positioning to make it easy for him to get it all in.

CRAI will win you the preflop raise/call and the C-bet, but leading is more likely to get you the whole pot. If the guy’s got KK, he’s calling either way, but you don’t really want AJ+ to fold here. I guess it’s preference, but I prefer to manipulate pot size early in MTTs since I can more easily get chips in the middle that way than with a blunt CRAI.



@ Don

The point of the check raise all in is to take it down uncontested if we can, and be the favorite with 2 cards to come if we HAVE to.

Its not like we are in a dominating position against anyone who would call a bet and get it all in. We’d be about 55/45 with our tourney on the line. An uncontested victory, boosting our stack heftily without risk of elimination, would be the FAR better outcome.



leading here is the worst play that you can make… i agree the check raise is the best play we have. if we hit our check call, we probably wont get much action/if any, afterwards.



There are arguments to be made for and against any of the three selections. It’s hard to screw this hand up unless you miss both the turn and the river and if you do miss you look like a dumbass no matter which decision you made.



Why on earth is leading weak here?

Given their stack size if the pre-flop raiser bets this, they are committed. We will not fold them out with a check-raise ever. If the big stack calls a c-bet from the pre-flop raiser and then we shove well first we’ll get a guaranteed called from the raiser and then the big stack will have to feel they are getting some good pot odds.

If we want to take this pot on the flop the only possible play to make this happen is a lead. Check raise has zero chance of accomplishing that.

It doesn’t matter how strong the check-raise looks if it won’t fold out any other hands.


Yes I agree once you lead you are committed if re-raised, maybe fven if called. Obviously check-raising committs you as well. Whatever play we decide in this spot if we don’t fold we are comitting to the hand more or less.


No six isn’t the only card you want to come out but its the only card not likely to improve your opponents hand at the same time.

And anyway the whole point here was that this was a stupid hand to play. The pre-flop raiser’s small stack and early position bet into the entire table means they have a premium hand. The big stacks call means they have something worth seeing a flop with. Our call in the big blind is retarded.



@ City Born

“The point of the check raise all in is to take it down uncontested if we can, and be the favorite with 2 cards to come if we HAVE to.

Its not like we are in a dominating position against anyone who would call a bet and get it all in. We’d be about 55/45 with our tourney on the line.”

Everything you’ve said here is 100% right which is why a check raise is bad in this particular spot: it simply won’t achieve its stated purpose of taking down the pot uncontested.

Shortstacked and raising from early position, the pre-flop raiser’s range is very narrow – JJ->AA, AKs/o and maybe AQs.

The only hand they are betting here and possibly folding to a checkraise is an AK/AQ of something other than spades. Even then with a good portion of their stack already in the middle and the blinds coming around they may feel this is the best chance. And then we still have the dealer to consider whose range is so wide and whose stack is deep enough they could well look us up.

If this was a cash game, check-raise it all the way. But this is a tournament and going for coin flips at the start of a tournament is not solid play.


Richard P

I seem to have come to this party late. Here’s a different perspective: open shove. We are only a favourite against ONE player who has TP or overpair so shoving is the best chance of both taking it down and getting heads up as a favourite.



@ Blackfair
“And anyway the whole point here was that this was a stupid hand to play. The pre-flop raiser’s small stack and early position bet into the entire table means they have a premium hand. The big stacks call means they have something worth seeing a flop with. Our call in the big blind is retarded.”

That’s not the problem we’re dealing with, but the call is fine anyway. You are getting 3.5-1 odds for your call (2 into 7), which means you only need a 22.5% chance to win to make the call profitable.

Furthermore, it’s much better to call here with small suited connectors than something like AQ as we have a much smaller chance of being dominated. Finally, 98s is a wiff or hit type of hand. If you hit a big draw or trips, you play it hard into a big pair who is going to have a hard time laying it down. If you miss or hit a small pair, you get out easily.

Finally, this might not be your style of play, but if I am about 60% to win early in a tourney I like to play it hard so I can either get a mess of chips and then push people around or go out strong and not watch myself bleed to death because I’m waiting for a big pair and a monster flop.




the EP raiser started the hand at 16 m, which is not great, but certainly not desperation mode. His range should be narrowed a bit, but not necessarily to JJ+ and AQ+ If he c-bets something usual, like 400 (2/3 pot) and we shove over the top, he will have 11 m remaining. If he has air, which constitutes a significant part of even your assigned range, he could certainly drop it. If he decides to call with air, then I am fine with that as our percentage to win is greatly increased, adding 9′s and 8′s to our large collection of outs. If he has top pair or greater, all the money is going in regardless of if you lead or check raise, however, you could pick up some dead money from the dealer if he decides to float or get tricky and raise the EP player. If the EP has air and resigns to not adding any more to this pot, but the dealer has top pair or greater, then you just apply the same logic to him. An added advantage to checking is to draw at least one player with air into at least one bad bet, and then ask them to fold.

A lead has the opposite effect, it looks suspicious, and invites someone to aggressively come over the top with a made hand, or call with a hand that beats yours and get away if a dangerous card like a spade drops.

@ Richard P

We are drawing to what will likely beat both players if they have made hands. If we are going to be all in with our tourney on the line, I’d much prefer to triple up if I hit, rather than double up. IMO, if either of them has air, they are dropping it to a CRAI.


Richard P

IMO stacks just aren’t deep enough for a CRAI as if either C or G bets ~500 either will be getting 2 to 1 on our shove. And if C bets with >TPTK and G flats with NFD we are are in bad shape. We have to lead here and like others have said having a standard raise flatted and a blank hitting the turn sucks. I’m still advocating the shove as the best way to either take it down or try and get it HU.


Richard P

Also why would C lead with air with stacks as they are in a multiway pot with a player behind? Way too risky / spewey. Maybe G would take a stab with the big stack but we flatted in the blind and may have hit this hard hard going for the CR. If we check it could easily get checked around and our winning equity disapears. We only have a winning hand with 2 cards to come against one opponent. That means we need to find the best way to make sure all the chips go in on the flop whilst knocking out one opponent. Luckily this is not PL and therefore we can drop the bomb.



I’m a day late to this, but voted CR. Check-calling will limit your return if you make your hand, as the opponents will not bet/call. Leading into a PF raiser is not as strong as making a CR. PF raiser could have broadway cards or pp including overs. Very likely they will make a c-bet, say $400. Regardless if player G calls, I’d make a pot-sized bet, essentially committing with this move if they do. Hope to push the other two out, unless one has flopped a set, and chip-up 1/2 to 2/3 of current stack.



There’s no debate here:

Check/Raise All in. Nothing else makes any sense at all.






Even the DONK got it right here.

Check-raise all in 100%.

Geez ,such a debate in such an easy hand.
(Loki get it right about always).



Do you guys not understand that we are favourite even against AA..?


greg d

absoultey not, check raise all in early tourney, with all the idiots at tilt. Your only a favorite if your flush draw is good and assume there isnt a set out there. Its early, and everyone in the world will have yoou on a flush draw, the check raise all in early in a tourney worked in 2005 not anymore. U guys who think the check raise all in is the right play, need to play a little more and rethink it.



@ CityBorn

In a tournament you have to assume a short stack UTG+1 is not raising with anything less than a premium hand unless you have a read that says otherwise.

@ Loki

“That’s not the problem we’re dealing with, but the call is fine anyway. You are getting 3.5-1 odds for your call (2 into 7), which means you only need a 22.5% chance to win to make the call profitable.”

Make the call profitable? Thats cash game talk man.

“Finally, this might not be your style of play, but if I am about 60% to win early in a tourney”

This is just not correct.

Your hand to win vs:
AK/AQ/AJ without a spade = 68%
AK/AQ/AJ with a spade = 63%
AA/KK/QQ without a spade = 56%
AA/KK/QQ with a spade = %52
JJ without a spade = 48%
JJ with a spade = %45
TT without a spade = 40%
TT with a spade = 37%
AK/AQ/AJ of spades = 33%

That is against one player with two cards to come. But you are up against two players. So your chances are even worse.

As you can see by the above range any hand that is willing to bet this flop is either ahead of you or coin tossing. And as Richard points out the stacks are not deep enough for your check raise to have fold equity. Check-raise is the donk play here.

Your chance to



@ Blackfair

Sure, 60% is a simple, rough calculation and I said that it should be rounded down a bit. 60% also only represents your chance of making a flush or straight, despite the fact that you could lost if you hit either.

Also, hero is up against 2 players. But I’m presuming that an all-in will fold at least one of them if not both and thus you can’t factor both players into your percent to win calculations.

A check will also give us the chance to get a free card and re-evaluate on the turn.

Maybe I just love to gamble when I’m greater than 50%, but the online tournies have fast levels and a double or triple up right now would help me steal blinds when they get high in the middle levels.

Finally, if I only play big pairs and big suited connectors in an online tourney pre-flop, I’m going to find myself pushing all-in with a meaningless sized short stack in the mid levels when I don’t get the cards I need early. 98s is speculative, but not “terrible.”



@ Loki

Don’t concede just because he’s calling you out–

98 suited isn’t even speculative…I would rather have it here than have a big pair. This is a standard spot for a shove. Someone who isn’t willing to shove here is probably the type of guy who folds himself down to an M of 2 late in the tournament just waiting for his big juicy pair of aces, lmao.




This is definitely a check-raise situation. Leading is not too bad but we will not have the fold equity if opponent went all-in thus we need to call.

If we check and villain bet we can shove and hope he fold. If he call the worst we have 6 outs (ATspade is the worst card for us) and likely we have 15 outs (60% chance to win this pot). So I think check-raise is the best play here..


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