3bet pot on monotone board

100k/200k 6max (5-handed)
I am small stack in small blind with 26M effective. I have 2 cards.
Main villain, 2 off the button is @dayman

dayman opens to 440k
2 folds
I raise to 1.65M
Big blind folds
dayman calls

Flop (3.5M)
Flop comes A :spades: 9 :spades: 4 :spades:
I check
dayman bets 1.25M
I call

Turn (6M)
Turn is 5 :hearts:
I check
dayman bets 8.5M
I have 23.6M left. Decision time.


  1. What hands might dayman have?
  2. What hands in my range should I call with?
  3. What hands in my range should I check-raise (presumably all-in) with?
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This is a great example of hand analysis in a vaccum. What is your history with Dayman, both on this table and lifetime. Has Dayman had a “hotseat”. How often does Dayman play opposite ( like passive with a monster, or agressive while bluff’n ) and the same thing from his perspective on you. None of these things are included in your example. Also missing are clues I might pick up on had you included the hand link, like how fast he/you bet. ( or Dayman’s stack size )

So I will call Dayman Player A, and Tacos Player B. I will ignore all extranious information I really need to answer correctly, and try and answer your 3 questions.

  1. a med pocket pair up to TT, A or K with a ok but not great kicker, suited connectors, a stone cold bluff, or a slowplay with better than above listed hands.
  2. (ignoring your range cause you didn’t ask what we thought it was) … K or Q of spades with a board pair (9/4/5) or a 2 or 3 with a spade, any set of trips (9/4/5), or a bluff hoping to bluff the river card.
  3. K or Q of spades with another spade, AA, 99, 2-3 of spades, or a bluff hoping to take the pot down right now.

Now lets actually run thru this as it happens, shall we :
Dayman was UTG, so just under pot sized bet, your raise was ~pot sized. @this point I’ll say you are prolly ahead or think you have a better hand. The flop should’ve hit you, but the 3 spades might be a problem, so you let dayman bet 1st kinda, but you did call his perhaps weak bet. While the turn was a blank it let in a small str8, again you chose to let dayman bet, so now you look weak and dayman’s bet shows that possible read, so he pots it + a little more to 1/3rd your stack. ( you never said how much dayman had in his stack which would help alot to know )

Personally here, I think the move really isn’t to flat-call unless you hold a monster, and an all in might be a valuebet, or to protect a semi weak hand that has drawing possibilities to reach the nuts. But remember mix’n up your play is a common ploy players use to disguise future hand strength in other hands. You both have wayy more Bankroll than just the stated chips, so both of you can lose with no big loss to your BR… so either of you “can be” agressive with a less than premium hand.

As listed, my guess is you folded to the 8.5m bet. Not knowing your exact history with Dayman, I might be totally wrong here. You decision completely depends on what you want dayman “to think” you have.

Online Poker has so few clues/tells. Other than history/knowledge of the other player… all you get is the following :

  1. What they bet ( amount )
  2. When they bet ( posistion )
  3. How they bet ( time )
  4. Thier demeaner in chat

There are so many other variables that I need to evaluate, other than what you originally listed. What you listed is a guide (odds), but player/table dynamics have to be part of your decision. I try to play any 1 hand differently @ times, and hope to show , that very same thing, to reinforce the “story” I’m trying to sell. ( depending on what I’m selling @ what point in time ) All players , longterm , have “tendancies/trends” about thier play that a good AI should crush, but top players also should be aware of them and take action accordingly.

This is why I’ve always kinda hated the 'ole, here’s what I/they had , what should’ve I done or what would’ve you done. (there’s usually never enough information unless the person being ask’d was also on that table the whole time) That being said, I do see some value in analysis of a hand in a vaccum.

I hope @love2eattacos, after a sufficient # of responses, you do list the hand #, so we can see what actually happened.

@dayman’s UTG range should be fairly strong, opening about 20% of hands. Preflop, we can probably remove the top of his range, which I’d expect to 4-bet in response to your 4-bet, and some of the weaker parts of his range as well. As a result, preflop you’d be looking at something like this:

The board blocks a lot of these 188 combos - 8 of the 32 suited aces, 12 of the 36 non-suited aces, one combo each of K9s, J9s, T9s, and 98s, and 3 of the 6 combos of 99 and 44. That leaves him with 158 combos at the flop.

With a 1/3 pot bet on the flop, he could be covering a lot of his range here. It might be easier to figure out what he WOULDN’T want to be on the flop. The suited hands that totally missed and have only backdoor straight draws would be good candidates to give up, and there are 24 of those (3x each of KQs, KJs, KTs, QJs, QTs, JTs, 87s, 76s). He might also give up the KQo and QJo combos that don’t contain a spade, and there are 9 each of those. For deception, he could work his three nutted hands into a check range to induce you to bluff on a later street, particularly because they block a lot of hands he’d want you to have (AxKs, for example). In total, that’s 45/158 checking hands (28%), with the other 103/158 (72%) betting.

The turn doesn’t really change the board. It blocks only 3 of the potential hands in his range (55), improving those to third set, and leaves him with 100 combos in his range at the start of the turn. In a 3-bet pot, neither of you should have a straight. What does change, though, is @dayman’s bet size. With his overbet, he’s setting up a 2/3 pot jam on the river. I could see doing this with his sets (9 combos) and made flushes (5 combos after we exclude KsXs), as well as his two-pair hands (3 combos of A9s, 2 combos of A5s, and 3 combos of A4s), for a total of 22 combos. Given his bet size, he’ll want bluffs to make up about 37% of his range, so he should look to have about 15 bluffing hands. Combinations that contain Ks or Qs would be ideal. There are three each of AxQs and QsJx, and six of KQo. Add in three combos of a low pocket pair like 66, and we’ve got a balanced range.

As for your range, it would help to understand what you’d 3-bet in the small blind. You’d want to be well ahead of the UTG range, particularly since if/when he calls you’ll be playing out of position for the rest of the hand. Something like this would cover 10% of your hands preflop, though you may be 3-betting a bit tighter:

The confounding question here is why you didn’t continue on the flop. Yes, V will have more nut flushes than you, but you’ll have all nine sets in your range compared to his six (since he won’t have AA), as well as TPTK. You can also have AxKs, or KxKs, while he can’t. This is the type of board where you could feasibly c-bet about 800K with your entire range and get a lot of folds.

The only hands I could see checking on this flop are top/middle set and KsXs for deception, or maybe JTs/QJs that completely whiffed. Since you’ll fold off those misses after the flop, then you’re left with nut flushes, top set, and second set on the turn.

Facing @dayman’s turn overbet, I like playing your flushes as a check-jam, and your sets as a check-call, looking to call any rivers. You’ll be in a weird spot if the board pairs on the river and you hold a flush, and this would be a good way to deny equity from V’s sets or weaker flushes.

As with @Sassy_Sarah, I’m interested to see how this played out. I think we’ve seen enough from you and @dayman on these forums to have a sense of how you guys play - @love2eattacos, fairly exploitatively, and @dayman, aggressive yet balanced - so thanks for giving us the relevant details in your post instead of superfluous crap like your history with each other or how long it took each of you to bet.

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I’ll look at this hand later and see if I have anything constructive to add. From skimming the responses, I have a few quick points though:

I’d expect a wider opening range 6-handed than 20% (with a 2.2x size - a size I never use at 100BB+ effective). This would depend on how active the table was though. Also, I don’t think you can cap V’s range here. I don’t want to give away any specific reads on any specific player so I’ll leave it at that.

If following GTO-based strategy, the OOP player should be checking many of his hands, even as the 3-bettor. This is especially true for coordinated/monotone flops.

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I should have included my 3bet range from the small blind. @WannabeCoder had it about right. 88+ ATs+ A5s-A4s 87s+ Occasionally mixing in smaller pocket pairs and suited connectors.

@Sassy_Sarah My perception of dayman’s play is that he is loose-aggressive and capable of taking multiple different lines with the same holding. We have played each other a lot and also talked strategy both on the forums and elsewhere. So we are each quite familiar with the other’s style. He is also very consistent with his bet timing so no tells there.

I didn’t include the link to the original hand yet because I don’t want to bias anyone’s thinking with the results from the hand.

@1Warlock is right that I am checking this flop a lot OOP. I don’t necessarily have a range advantage and against an aggressive player I need to defend my checking range by including a good number of strong hands.

@everyone: if I am check-jamming the turn for value sometimes, what hands would be good to bluff with?

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Should you check-Jam dayman’s 8.5m bet, a stone cold bluff ( bad idea, usually ) will be any 2 cards, a semi-bluff means you have to have drawing possibilities like x2, x3, xKs, xQs. There are so few hands where you have Nothing, that can achieve a suckout. You have to be playing something, but a weak something that can draw to a winning hand.

You raised preflop, then check’d both the flop and the turn, so just that alone ( to me ) says you had something to raise with, was a attempt to probe your opponents hand strength, or were repp’n strength so easier to bet the flop… therefore if you are Jamming dayman’s 8.5m bet with a bluff, most of the time its a semi-bluff, not a stone cold bluff.

On the board you described … A :spades: 9 :spades: 4 :spades: 5 :hearts: , we have to see what could be drawn to, that can beat either Trips , the flush , or the Low Str8.

Quads, various Boats, other Flushes, or the Low Str8. A Low Str8 only beats Trips or worse and ties with the low str8, a Flush only beats other lower Flushes or the low Str8 or worse, so that leaves both of you to draw to a Boat or Quads. I don’t consider this board to be draw-heavy, so at this point the inter dynamics of you and daymans knowledge of each other and posistion, is the majority (50%+1) of your decision. ( in my opinion )…

Its a crappy board unless you crushed it, so your decision hinges on if you want dayman out, or you want him in the hand (a call). :thinking::face_with_raised_eyebrow:

  1. If you want to keep dayman in the hand, then you flat-call and face the river together because normally if you wanted a call you would re-raise to about 20-21m, problem is, you only have 23.6m left, so no reason to just bet 21m when you can just shove the 23.6m
  2. If you want dayman out you either bet the 21m or Shove, and again makes no sense to just bet 21m, so you Shove the 23.6m and hope its enuff. I can tho see the logic in that… the 21m bet can appear stronger than the Shove, so it might be the better bet to get dayman out.

Taking this into account, (me), there must have been a reason you re-raised preflop to 1.65m, after dayman raised to 440k. Both of you have enough experience with each other , so by the turn decision, that a interview with D. Negranu flashes in my brain… it goes like this :

Danial is asked about a play he made, and his reply is the classic … Well, it boiled down to … I knew, that he knew, that I knew, that he knew I knew… so I raised, he folded.

Because I knew that you two have that background, I approached your hypothetical from the perspective… random player A and random player B… NOT… Tacos vs dayman.
Mainly because I cannot accurately predict how many multiple levels of psychology are occuring under the surface here. I can only base my answers on the Math(odds) behind the situation. so I have to pretend its (2) generic players. Its also why I knew why you didn’t include the hand link, and I agree with why you didn’t.

I have played against both you and dayman, not to the degree you 2 have with each other, but I tried not to let any bias’s I have cloud my answer. Furthermore, my answers are generalities, based on the percieved “long game” of the odds. ( ie- “usually” what is the “optimum” play in this situation ) Because I don’t have 200-300m++ by now, its abundantly clear, I’m making bad decisions on Ring tables or that I’m ( as advertized ) only an above average player, but not in you or dayman’s league yet. :pensive:

If you have KQo with a spade still in your range, that would be a good bluff. I’d assumed you would not 3-bet that light, but if you do with some frequency (say, 25%-50% of the time), that should provide enough balance to your turn jam range. AxKs has too much showdown value to use as a bluff, and again, nobody should have the straight.

I would like to understand, though, why regularly c-betting flop here is bad. Yes, I get that you’re out of position, but you likely have a slight range advantage on this board, and you’re continuing your aggression from the previous street. If someone here has invested in a solver, I’d love to see what kind of analysis it spits out for this spot. Should you check your full range, bet your full range, or mix it up?

@Sassy_Sarah alerted me to this post. Unfortunately I am busy with work and weather right now. I will comment sometime later tonight or tomorrow. Great post @love2eattacos. Love the write up!

I’m opening only about 16% here, should be higher playing this deep but shot taking 100/200 against some really good players imo so I don’t mind decreasing variance. The ranges I’m playing are ones I’m very familiar with and have put in a lot of time with.

I was giving tacos around 9-10% range to 3!, I know he’s going to have some 3! folds but I don’t know if he’ll have more or less oop or vs me in particular. We’ve been on the same table quite a bit recently but haven’t gone to the mat very often.

My play in this hand I’m not sure if I’m okay with it or not. When I checked it against my ranges everything is in line so I’m cool with that. If I have issue with this hand it’s with the assumptions I have about tacos range. I was expecting something like 99+ ATs+ A5s KTs+ QTs+ JTs T9s 98s 87s 76s AQo+.

I believe on this board texture we’re going to be pretty range neutral with both of out ranges smashing it extremely hard. For this reason when it x to me I’m range betting near 100% to take control of the pot but I don’t want to bet too big . As warlock pointed out and taco confirmed he’s x most of his range here if not all of it and he’s not folding very much of it to a bet so I’m really only targeting the suited connector part of his range that’s not spades and pairs under 99 if he has them (??) Shouldn’t need a big bet to shed this part of his range.

On the flop we got called so on to the turn most of my range is going to be trying to get to showdown and x back to bluff catch rivers. I’ll have some stronger hands that I want to value bet for not only value but protection/denial a little bit too. Since we’re both very strong here I will have hands that I want to gii with and being IP it’s going to very hard to do without an ob and I think the turn is better spot than the river for it because we don’t let action killing cards come off like 4th spades and paired boards, it’s better for my bluffs as well. I have 3 combos that I’m over betting on the turn, KJss KTss and T9hh. I’ll leave results to @love2eattacos since it’s his post. @Sassy_Sarah @WannabeCoder thanks for input, I’ll wait till taco gives results to answer questions if you have any about my ranges or the mix strat or anything else you know. :slight_smile: Cheers


I’ve never played against Dayman that I can recall, so I don’t have any read on what he might have. When I played low stakes, it was seemingly assumed that anyone who would bet into a solid suited board had a flush, and no one would call unless they had a flush. Or maybe the highest remaining card of the board suit, so a 4-card draw to the nut flush.

At 100K stakes, I’m seeing more people playing these boards even without a draw to the flush. High pocket pairs will stay in, even bet the hand, and paired with the board, or two paired with the board will play too. This makes these hands more interesting, and more profitable to those who do hit the flush. Oftentimes, someone hitting the nut flush on the flop will check, hoping someone will try to bluff the pot, or hit a weaker flush and go in for a big pot they can trap them on.

It’s often very possible to bluff these boards, but if someone is lurking the flush, it can be dangerous. Often a weak bet on the flop from early position can fold the table, but less often a weak bet from late position will – I surmise because such action from late looks more like an “information bet” to the rest of the table, and someone who’s lurking on a pair or better will stay in, or check-raise, while someone who is lurking on the flush will just call and hope the bluffer barrels again on the next street.

So what could Dayman have? An Ace, a flush, or a draw to the flush, or a draw to the flush with a pair, would be my most likely guesses. Maybe 32?

What should you call with? A flush, a K-spades off-suited hand drawing to the nut flush, a set, maybe not just a high Ace, but if you’ve got two pair with the Ace, maybe call. If you have reason to suspect he’s bluffing air, call with any hand better than High card.

What should you check-raise with? Nut flushes, near nut flushes, but I like just flatting the turn with nut hands, and seeing what you can raise him with on the river. If you think he’s drawing but hasn’t hit the flush yet, and you have a pair/two pair/set, check-raise those hands.

Here’s the hand:

I had K :clubs: K :spades:. I check-jammed the turn and dayman folded.

My thinking at the time:
I knew that I wanted to jam flushes and top set here so I need a small number of bluffs to balance. I have QQ-TT with a spade as other options, but with KK I block both the nut flush and AK. In terms of what might fold, I want dayman to have an Ax hand like AQ-AJ that will be put in a tough spot, and KK doesn’t block those holdings.

Post-hand thinking:
dayman and I talked about the hand a bit in the chat. He mentioned that he probably isn’t actually folding AQ here so maybe KK wasn’t the best choice.

With KsKx in particular, I do wonder whether it would be better just to call down since I am beating all dayman’s bluffs and also have great equity with the nut flush draw. I’m still struggling to think of a better bluff candidate though. Perhaps I need to call with a few more hands on the flop in order to have a wider range of bluffs available?


WOW, you had 1/2 the average stack,
and dayman had almost 4x what u had.
Discounting conn issues, on the turn dayman
did “seem” to think or took time to get bet size.

I still say, a lower ranked player like 800-1200 will have a harder time getting away with your Jam, or dayman’s bet. Mainly cause top players don’t fear a 50-100m BR player as much.

After watching the hand, ( and in my opinion )
Dayman opened preflop cause he could ( had the stack @ table ). So he might’ve had anything. While Tacos had a monster and has to raise preflop there, to make sure dayman actually wants to play the hand.
On the flop Tacos has way too many options, but is behind to made flush or any Ace.
The Turn is basically “a blank” cause most ppl won’t call your pre-flop raise with any 2-3, and on that table its a 95% chance dayman doesn’t have 2-3. Personally I think dayman tried to steal the pot and got caught with hands in cookie Jar, but I do think he had a A and it was a semi-bluff. I like a min-raise here, but tacos stack was too small, so he shoved instead. If you flatcall here, its harder to get value on the river unless its xKs vs xQs and the river hits another spade.
Tacos is right with Ks he has outside nut flush protection if another spade comes. I guess if the case K hits the river he blocks, but thats the only card he blocks if dayman has any Ace other than the before mentioned flush draw or the flush itself.

Now knowing tacos hand, He also was semi-bluff’n in my book. Only trips, 2 pair, and the flush are value check-raising the turn here for value, unless its a stone cold bluff. Both players are more than capable of a stone cold bluff, but when like rank players play together, usually bluff’n is like here… a semi-bluff situation. Both players must partially respect the made flush here, only Tacos had draws to beat it tho, which is why dayman prolly folded to the re-raise.

This kinda seems like a standard hand for the stakes level cause noone with 100m or less in BR, was currently sitt’n down. I’m think’n the buyin was 25-75(100)m, and everyone came in for 50m. It reinforces to me, that top players “generally” always have a lil something something, especially when playing against like BR players.

Since I incorrectly didn’t put Tacos on KxKs, I thus incorrectly predicted what Tacos did, in retrospect the hint was the 3 questions he ask’d. Knowing he ask’d about a Jam, I should’ve @least considered he did Jam dayman’s bet.

It is helpfull for many 1000-2000 rank players to see the actuall thought process of top rank players, especially since those players aren’t considered as much of a threat to the players involved here, given that they now know some insight into thier play.

If I had (BR) 100m, and bought in, and was in dayman’s spot on the turn, (usually) check-Jam’n me here is a recipie for disaster, cause you better hit a K or a spade on the river or I’m take’n your stack. I have enjoyed this thread even tho I guess I got it wrong. Knowing stack sizes @ the table, my guess would be different.

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Yeah I don’t know if you need too many bluffs here with such a linear range. I think KsKx is probably the best bluff combo as you said it blocks the nuts as we well as draws to the nuts. My range is very polar when I OB the turn to leave 2/3 psb on the river obviously setting up a nice river jam. So with my comment above we now all know I had Th9h. I used these combos I mentioned because 1) KsJs and KsTs are both nuts that do not block Qs which is 2nd nuts or 2nd nut flush draw. Reserving KsQs leaves nut combos in my smaller bet range for “value”. I have two suited connectors that get to the turn where I mix 50%/50% call/4! bluff pre flop. They are JTs and T9s, since I only want one as a bluff I chose Th9h to bluff because it blocks 99 and JTs doesn’t block anything, plus half my JTs are 3rd nut flush.

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Blinds were 100k/200k and the default buyin is 25M.

By the way, I only listed my stack size and not the others because I was the effective stack on the flop and it was just the two of us going heads up in the hand. As long as dayman has me covered it doesn’t matter whether he has 30M or 300M on the table.

Thanks, glad to hear that this was helpful! I am pretty transparent on here about my strategy. If someone wants to exploit me that’s fine, I get more value from the discussion and feedback than any play chips lost.


Well played sir. FWIW, when I polarize here and get called leaving 2/3 psb for river I’m giving up on the river so I like your shove a lot. If I bet a smaller more standard value bet I could reserve bluffs for the river by setting the river bet to either psb or even slight ob, which is another line I might sometimes take here.

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I love that you’re thinking about the game and trying to improve. I know tacos and I both are here to help not only players like you but us as well. Alex Fitzgerald says (paraphrasing) the best way to learn something well is to teach it. I know he got it from somewhere else. I’m sure we could google it. The one thing I am most trying to get through to you is that 1) bankroll only matters as much as the player is going to manage it well. If you drop your life savings into one stock, say a hedge fund that can have huge returns but is very high risk. You go broke or double your money quickly. If you have 100K and buy in to a 500/1K table for 100K you’ll double your money or go broke quickly. If you instead invest your money in good growth stock mutual funds over a huge number of years you’re very likely to become wealthy and have a very low risk of ruin or going broke. If you instead buy in to a 25/50 table it’s going to take some time and growth to move up in stakes and to make that 100K double but your ROR (going broke) is greatly diminished because you reserve a roll to stay in the game when variance bites your butt several times in a row. AA vs KK is still losing a whopping 20% of the time or 1 out of every 5. On the table the effective stack is all you can play for in that hand and that is what you use to determine optimal strategy for that particular situation.


Is +1000 a thing? If not +1 then. :heart:


I’ll put it this way Dayman. I learned standard card games, including things like… Spades, Hearts, Solitare, Canasta, Bridge, Rummy,ect,ect … but I hadn’t learned Cribbage(acey-ducey), and while playing against one person, I swear he could read me like a cheap suit. Especially in a game where cards are swap’d, but just during play, 85% of the time, it was like he always knew what I had.

I’m a good Hearts/Spades player, and noone else ever knew Canasta, but that level of understading does transfer over to poker. I’ve always said I was just “above average” @ Poker. I won’t say what i think my dificiencies are, but I have been exploring other trains of thought while playing. I’m not a note taker so my notes are memorized.

It does me no harm to explore more options to put in my repituar. I must adapt and incorporate new skillsets/mindsets into what I already know. I have noticed some irregularities in play here @ replay … at or above the 10k/20k level, when compared to lower tables. I also know how dropping levels down to say 1k/2k and below, can change my game. As a mainly Tournament player, leverage is different in many ways in Rings. I also notice things like players using either the slider, or 1/2pot or pot to bet with.
Once the number of 0’s increase its sometimes easier to use 1/2 pot or pot, just cause there is no math to calc. As you move thru levels, the mindset needs to be based on # of BBs and relevant pot sizes. Its the same calc we have to make when playing promos where BB won/lost is the metric. Doesn’t matter if its 1/2 … 1k/2k … or even 1m/2m … betting 5.5bbs is still betting 5.5bbs, just the number of zero’s increase, or so you MUST think about it.

I’m an adreniline junky, so if there’s no juice to playing, it becomes Boring. Yet, beating yourself is the 1 cardinal sin you cannot allow yourself to do. If this was for real money, I would be more Bankroll mgmt aware. I have noticed tho, I can learn something here that is helpfull to me, so why not try.

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I’m aware that people have more gamble when they aren’t really risking anything significant. The point I’m making is against your argument that someone with 200M has an advantage over someone with 20M. If they both buy in for 4M at 20K/40K then either the player with 200M will have an advantage because he’s properly rolled for the game and can play optimally vs the chip scared shorty or the short bankroll player is not chip scared and can play optimally knowing that variance could send him home broke. The 196M chips in the bank provide no inherent advantage to that player other than if he bust out due to variance he can buy back in more times than the other guy.


At 20/40 and even 50/100 (defendant on V’s) this would be more accurate. At 100/200 I’m more balanced (at least I try) and have to protect my UTG call a 3! range.