Bluff Catching

This is about a very specific type of situation, so please keep in mind that this question/thought does not refer to most bluffing, especially on Replay. Most players on Replay and in most poker games do not bluff often enough: they do not check-raise as a bluff often, they do not overbet as a bluff often. So, against most players it is smart to overfold when they show aggression, meaning that you can safely fold many very strong hands like top pair decent kicker or in some situations even an overpair or two pair. You can feel confident folding really good hands in the knowledge that for every one time that they are bluffing or overvaluing their hand, they have the nuts twenty times. Also, most players that bluff do so very badly, telling stories that don’t make sense and generally doing it so often that you can call very loose against these specific players. But, this general strategy (overfolding against most and calling light against maniacs) has become a lazy default in my game.

Good poker players and top players on Replay, such as top 10 players like ilovecat or idiotplayer (and other current players who will go unnamed), make polarizing bets and apply pressure in situations where they know that most decent players will fold too often for the reasons I listed above. Polarizing means that they have either a bluff or a very strong hand. Because they are somewhat balanced between bluffs and value, it forces you to consider folding strong hands and bluffcatching with weak hands. This is the most difficult situation to face in poker because it forces you to evaluate your hand within your range. So the question is, are there any rules of thumb or mathematical principals to apply to these decisions? For example, should you call with top pair any kicker and fold worse (which is probably folding too much against some players) or call with second or third pair (calling too much against most players)? It takes cognitive energy to evaluate where I am in my range and sometimes makes me second guess my gut and make a bad decision, but that seems to be the approach needed. I’d also like to incorporate their polarizing bet strategy into my game, but my bluffs always seem to get called here because people call too much in general.

Here are some examples of hands like this. In the first case I folded incorrectly (Kc9h). My gut said to call, but the fact that I called all previous bets seemed to indicate that I was likely to call the river, so why would they be bluffing? The fact that the flush draw missed makes it a prime bluffing spot. In the second hand I caught a bluff with a much weaker hand than I had in the previous hand. Sometimes ace high can be enough to call if your opponent is polarized, but it is a really bad habit to bluff catch too much with such a weak hand.

Obviously, there cannot be a constant rule because every opponent is different and other factors like board texture and position are key for these decisions, but I’m trying to think about the whole range more conceptually to decide what kinds of hands in what spots to continue with and which to fold. For example, on dynamic/draw heavy board textures call down lighter with marginal value hands like second pair but fold these hands on drier boards. I’m going to have combos of most sets and top pairs on most boards, so I can have monsters and hands with showdown value to call down with, but calling down with say top pair 76 on a 6 high board seems dicier.

Other important factors to consider are how many big hands are they repping and if I have blockers to their value or bluff hands. On dry boards like 773, they can have only a few massively strong combos, and they would be less likely to bet huge with monsters because their opponent can’t have much to call with, but some players will also bet huge on this board with 99 because they can get called by smaller pairs or even Ax. Maybe just becoming familiar with the tendencies of each opponent would be more useful, given how few players make these plays.

I’m also interested in feedback on my specific plays, like calling a 3-bet OOP w K9o and check-calling down with AQs being particularly marginal decisions, but ones that made some sense in these specific situations.


I’ve watched Villain a lot. Great player!!! From what I’ve seen V seems to make massive over bet bluffs on the river more often in comparison to greedy value bets with the nutz. Fairly unbalanced in my poker novice analysis, but I think other good players agree by calling with some marginal hands. Have you cross paths many times? Have you seen how Vendetta plays? I have a small sample of interesting hands to understand players tendency & ability to bluff.

Hand #648765564 (turn bet is full pot as a draw/bluff to 2nd nut flush) River bet

Vendetta has enough respect for high ranked players to expect too many disciplined folds and hence will bluff too much especially in massive pots with missed draws.

Hand #648751898 (personally I think Hero played well with a min check raise feeler bet on flop, & V pushed for a massive bluff pot steal on the river)
watch the following hands player chat to learn more!!!

K9o might be fairly marginal against players that cant pull off massive bluffs like V for Vendetta. Most of the time I think you need to call K9o Vs Vendetta. I’m sure V switches gears sometimes so if you have a read then make a tight fold. Default needs to be call.

AhQh was well Hero played against V. I like the check to induce a bluff against Captain Bluff. I would prob donk bet the turn or check raise as a bluff defensively. Maybe a mistake OP that complicates river decision but any rivered A or Q adds to check down bluff catch showdown.

Hand #648491277 (AQ high card hero call)
I’m far from a great player and another galaxy from GTO, but I think AQ hero call was good despite the fact that I would probably have the stones to call it down.

Pre-flop: Hero raises the button 3x & V 3Bets to 12x & Hero defends AQo. The V flop 3Bet is very strong, larger than most elite stakes players will bet. Interesting…

Flop: V bets quickly 15 into 23 on a 7c2s5d rainbow safe board. Safe board and aggressive large bet? WHY? Hero calls…

Turn: Tc which is almost as safe as houses & V bets full pot 55 into 55? Very fishy. Hero makes a slow Hollywood $uP3R bluff call. I’m sure Hero was thinking hard as to why o why V bet full pot. The turn call = a river bluff call on a lot of different cards.

River: V bluffs & Hero makes a fairly quick Hero call…

Villain is playing like a low stakes player trying to bluff way too much…

Hey Joe!!
I’m famous :joy:

I think your fold with k9 is a good play, + ev in the long term. I think with AQ the move + ev is fold turn (for sure there is no raise turn in this spot).

Compared to your question, obviously there is no general rule in these cases, other than the board, the blockers, the information and a factor that I think you haven’t considered (very important), the flow of the game.

For example these two spots are closely spaced and the fact that you bluffed on hand 1 I am sure it affected your call on hand 2.

Compared to the technical analysis of the spot, there are 2 very different situations. In the first one I am the 3bettor (even if in b vs b) and it is difficult to assign me a large range of flush draws. Instead in the second hand I flat from the btn, which drastically widens my range. After your check I am playing with a practically bid hand and can 3bet really wide.

That’s why I think both hands are a fold, more the second than the first.

As you can see, what most of the average players don’t realize is that in these spots it is the history between the players that plays a predominant role.

this is all the more true in the situation mentioned below:

I think cke’s is a really bad play, especially for his rather nitty postflop style of play.

beyond winning his hand, this call is very disadvantageous in the long run, and made me make some adjustments which later allowed me to win a lot against him.

The posted hand is pretty much the same as this:
(650m pot)

I wouldn’t be surprised if he called with A high or something.

This type of passive play is not profitable at all, except in very rare cases on particular boards (not those of these two hands).

Of course, in the hand mentioned maybe I missed the bet on the river, I could have bet half-pot and still be credible. But for my style of play I would also have pushed over pair.

Btw, i don’t think check-minraise flop of the player was a good play.

in the forums we are judged in a very result-oriented way, but I assure you that this type of play does not exist in high level poker. Check-raising would have been a nice play.

P.S. who is Vendetta? :laughing:

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Hello Joe,

I don’t have feedback, but I do have a couple of follow-up questions about the K9o hand.

Your pre-flop raise was light, and I don’t know what you expected to achieve with it. At the 20k/40k blind level that I frequent, I often get multiple callers with 5x open raises, and I don’t expect that your opponent would fold to a min raise. In addition, calling the 5x 3-bet with K9o in the SB seems a bit loose, especially against a player that obviously has a big post-flop edge. But perhaps I am thinking too conservatively, given your opponent’s style.

What confused me most was your post-flop line. Why no check raise on the flop? This seems to me like a great spot to reapply pressure against a LAG-type player. I also don’t understand why you gave up on the hand on the river. The river card was not likely to have improved your opponent’s hand, so, if you were willing to call on the turn, what changed for you on the river?

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Thanks for the questions. I will explain my thinking, not because I think my play was the right one, but because it is helpful to think it through and get any other feedback.

I min-raise because it was blind v blind. On the one hand, he could have garbage and just fold. My hand is not great, but I am happy to get a call or a fold. On the other hand, table dynamics are very important (as @El-Jogador mentioned) and my expectation of my opponent (though we have not played together much before) was that they were likely to get aggressive when I made a small bet. What was frustrating about this hand is that it played out exactly as I wanted it to except I folded the river. I thought that if he came back with aggression I would be able to call down with a pair of Ks or even 9s and get bluffy if the flop was something like JT.

As played, what would be the purpose of check-raising the flop with a hand like K9? If he is bluffing he folds, if he has a K it probably outkicks me because he 3-bet, so he can have AA/KK/AK/KQ or even KJ. The only hands a check-raise could maybe get value from would be QQ/JJ/TT hands, and even those might fold. I suppose I could be bluff check-raising with 56s or two diamonds, but I don’t want to turn a marginal value hand into a huge pot when my opponent’s range is uncapped. I get the most value by letting him bluff into me and lose the least when he has a big hand.

My plan was to pot control, let him be the aggressor, and never fold. Honestly his story did not make sense, which is why I almost called. What is he credibly repping? AA/KK/44/22? AK should probably not be played this aggressively, but it was the possibility of AK/KQ or even 67s that got me to fold.

Hope you don’t mind the fame. I appreciate your thoughts on the hands.

I definitely appreciate the importance of table dynamics in these situations, though it can cause a meta-game nightmare if you do too much. For example, I called down light with AQ because you bluffed, but you could be thinking that because you showed the bluff before that I would be calling light so you could only be betting for value, so I would actually need to be tight. Or you could be thinking that i make too many tight folds, so you could be bluffing more. The same dynamic can be interpreted multiple ways.

What I was kind of looking for was a more general rule of thumb, which could be adapted to specific situations. Let’s say you are facing an opponent who has fairly balanced frequencies and makes big polarizing bets with made hands and hands with draws or key blockers. I guess we can’t assume that they make polarizing bets on all board types, but let’s say they are loose and balanced enough that they can credibly rep value in most spots and know what hands are worth valuing (e.g., AsAh is a much better hand on a 258r board than a 8c9cJc board).

So, let’s take the example of the first hand. 200bbs deep I min-bet and called a 3-bet blind v blind with K9o, so let’s give me a range of say 25% of hands and exclude AA/KK/AK. You 3-bet, but given the table dynamic and lack of hands played against each other, let’s give you a pretty wide range of all pocket pairs, suited broadways, suited connectors, suited Ax, plus J9s, T8s, ATo+, and KQ. Not saying that’s the real range, could be much tighter or wider, but let’s say 19% of hands. Your range advantage and position are good enough reasons why flatting the 3-bet here is usually a bad idea, so maybe the rest is irrelevant.

The flop comes Kd, 4d, 2s. Checks to you, you bet 75% pot. Let’s say you are moderately balanced, so you aren’t going to fire hands with marginal showdown value like AQo or 54s (other than diamonds), but you could certainly bet a large percentage of your range for value and as bluffs. Value hands you could bet on this flop include all pocket pairs except 33 (63 combos) and Kx hands (33 combos). Blockers are important, and my holding a K9 in the actual hand blocks a big % of KK/99/Kx combos, which pushes you more toward bluffs. Let’s say your bluffs include all suited diamonds that missed (20 combos) plus 65s (3 more combos) and let’s add some other random junk. Without considering my hand that means you are bluffing 20-25% of the time, which seems pretty balanced. Plus I beat a number of combos you would be for value (like 54) and split with some, so I am obviously not going to fold here. Given my exact hand, your bluff frequency goes up to ~33% or maybe even higher.

Now let’s look at my range and decide which hands to fold/call/raise (assuming I always check to the raiser and don’t have a donk bet range). The top of my range and only massive hands are 44/22, so my C-R for value range is only 6 combos. This means that if I C-R with all suited diamonds I would be bluffing too much (20+ combos), so I am probably going to call with some flush draws like Ax and check-raise flush draws with less showdown value or 65. I also have about 51 combos of Kx. Given that your range is uncapped, does it ever make sense for me to check-raise anything other than sets or draws here? I don’t think so, so it rarely makes sense to C-R this board (with maybe 10 combos out of ~300 I can have). That means I am bifurcated between calling and folding mostly. Given that I have plenty of good bluffs (diamonds and 65s), I can easily fold all missed non-paired hands other than Ax (66 combos) and call with all Ax, Kx, and pocket pairs (~200 combos). So, I am mostly going to continue on this flop and playing what seems like the correct frequency.

Now the turn comes with a 5 of hearts and you bet over pot. This a polarizing bet, which indicates that either you think you can get value or cause me to make a big laydown. I recognize that table dynamics play a role here, and my small bet-call pre, check-call flop, and initial check turn look passive, which could be perceived as capping my range, which could push my opponent more toward bluffs. Given the bet sizing and line so far, you are repping KQs+ and sets (42 combos) but more likely AA/KK/22/44/55 (18 combos, though my K blocks a few). The bluffs that make sense here are basically limited to diamonds (18 combos).

Given how bluff-heavy that range is, I am getting a good price to continue with value hands. Again, I do not have many check-raise value hands (22/44/55), so I am not going to C-R as a bluff often either. So I am mostly calling or folding. Let’s say I can safely fold Ax hands (even though I didn’t in the other hand), which is a lot of combos. It appears that my exact hand K9 is relatively high in my range and definitely should be continuing given opponents potential bluff frequency. But where is the bottom of my calling range? Realistically I probably call with TT+/Kx and fold 99/88/77 and maybe 66 and also call/raise with 33 because of the straight draw. What to do with diamond draws here is tricky too because I can re-bluff and try to push you off of marginally better hands, but again it doesn’t seem like I am credibly repping much value.

So, K9 seems pretty solidly in my calling range, and so we see the 8c (brick) on the river. The river didn’t realistically improve anyone’s hand except for 6d7d. The shove indicates either a missed diamond draw (or total air) or AA/KK/55/44/22/6d7d. I’m including AA because it could go for max value versus Kx. That’s 19 combos of value along with 20-30 combos of bluffs, which is pretty heavily weighted towards bluffs and pushes me towards calling. Now, I don’t know for certain how many diamond draws you have or whether you would play all diamond draws this way. But even if it is only 10 or 15, that would still be fairly bluff heavy.

Now this is the tricky part (as was the turn) where I have to evaluate my entire range and decide what to call and what to fold. Let’s assume I C-R 22/44/55 on the turn, so I don’t have those. That leaves 6d7d, ~50 combos of Kx plus QQ, JJ, TT. I can choose to fold the lower pocket pairs and K8s (20 combos) and call with the other Kx. Am I calling the right amount, too often, or not often enough? I believe the math indicates that I need to win 35-40% to break even on a call. Does that mean I should call with all pocket pairs and Kx because the opponent is polarized and at least 40% of their range is bluffs? Or does choosing the best 60-67% of my hands each street to continue with make sense? I believe that means K9 is a call here (which was my gut reaction at the time) but right on the borderline.

I also like the check-raise on the flop. You’re too strong to fold and too weak to just call.

I don’t mind if he folds his bluffs there. It’s not like K9 is a trapping-type hand, and I want to charge him for his draws. I’m not giving AXs and smaller pairs the chance to beat me for nothing. Take the lead, define his hand a little more, and evaluate on the turn.

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I will think about it, and I have definitely seen other players do this with top pair, but it does not make any sense to me. I bet to get value or to get folds, never to define my hand. If I can’t get value from worse then I don’t bet. It is definitely worth considering whether check-raising has value in terms of equity denial since he can have flush draws. What do I do if he calls? check-fold? weak. bet again? massively overvalues my hand. As I said, the value in the line I took was letting him bluff into me, and it worked but I talked myself out of the river call.


@JoeDirk - great topic and not an easy one. I agree with you that you need a general framework to work off of and then adjust to specific players. Because it is such an in depth topic, I’ll try to locate some material for you that isn’t behind a paywall. Its not as simple as deciding which are your best pairs/kickers in absolute terms. There are times when calling K3 or77 will be superior to KT for blocking/unblocking effects. You don’t want to hold the cards that you need your opponent to have at some frequency in order to pick off a potential bluff.

I glanced at the 1st hand and this thread quickly so I only have a few comments. All are meant as defaults as if you were playing against other solid people.

  1. Never min raise from the SB. Your opening size from that position should be larger than from any other position. So, if you are going 2.5x as your standard size, from the SB you should be at 3x.
  2. K9o is a fine open but it is a fold to a 3! You are not going to be able to defend a range containing K9o OOP as the defender vs a solid player. Range discipline sets up the rest of the hand and trying to construct balanced frequencies off an unstable range isn’t going to work out well for you.

If I have a chance to go over the hands I will. Just to respond to a few of the comments about x/r the flop - absofreakinglutely not. Aside from the fact that you shouldn’t have this hand in your range at all, this is the worst possible part of whatever range you hold to x/r a polarized bet with. Pull this line on any remotely decent player and you’ll get shredded. Mandatory call on the flop, nothing more.

Lastly - your breakdown of the hand in your last post was better. Yes, it went off the rails flatting the K9o. You will have to massively overfold to any bet size because of it (more than the OOP player normally has to), Facing a 75% bet size on a flop that is more typically range-bet with a smaller size is where it gets interesting to me. In a singe raised pot this would be the case but even more so in a 3! one. 'llI have to think about why V chose this size on this board.

Nice to see you back.

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Thanks, I appreciate your insight. Definitely agree with your point about the SB sizing. Ordinarily I do add .5bb to any SB open instead of going down 1bb this time. For some reason I was trying to lazily take the initiative in the pot and maybe induce aggression, but clearly wasn’t a solid plan with a marginal hand against a good opponent.

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Very welcome. BTW, if you decide that this isn’t a board (pretty dry) where you should ever x/r to this size bet, then you retain your sets on the turn and river. If you would retain them, you can fold your weakest Kx hands and still be balanced. Maybe pull out Equilab and run the hand street by street, peeling off hands at every decision point and see what you come up with at equilibrium to call the river with?

As a thought, V may be taking a massively exploitative line with his bet sizes on the flop. If he thinks he can narrow ranges sufficiently on TP, the few obvious draws and a trap or 2, then he has license to steal on future streets. You specifically may have better calling frequencies than most but I can see this being a very successful strategy vs most nitty/fit-or-fold types. If the players get all spazy and start x/r all their 2-pair+ hands, then V can simply run them over when they just call. I’d like to see him play a little to get a feel for what he’s doing.

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Absolutely appreciate both of your points here: I don’t think I have a c-r range in this exact spot, just not enough value in the range, but maybe that is evidence why flatting OOP is generally bad. I’d love to be able to c-r flush draws as a bluff, but not really repping much.

The second point is exactly what I am trying to combat. As I play against these types of players more they seem to know both that I can call wider than many players (not as fit or fold) and that I can make big folds. But these kinds of spots are also where I end up spewing by going with a dubious read (like calling down with AQ in the second hand). Not playing so passively preflop seems like the answer.

My opponent is doing exactly what you suggest, exploiting how fit or fold/passive/scared most people play. Most players will fold Kx by the river in this hand (he even advocates in this thread that it is correct to do so), but what does that leave his opponent to call down with? Should they be folding their entire range except sets? And what exactly is he repping? 3-betting 22/44/55 is not a sure thing, so he is leaning heavily on AA/KK, and when his opponent has top pair, it knocks out 1/4 of those combos as well. This tactic is auto-profit for him, especially if he is only taking this line with draws and will have improved to a nuttish hand an additional 25+% of the time. This way he gets paid when he has a monster and when his draws hit, and he gets folds a ton too. It also gives you initiative against the whole table, knowing that you can apply that kind of pressure and puts your opponents in uncomfortable situations where they might have to risk their stack with a hand they don’t love.

This is what I need to add to my game… When you are used to facing station-ey opponents it is too easy to under-bluff and profit by going for value, but it costs me value on my value bets, bigger pots when my draws hit, and fold equity.

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what about the turn bet of 18BB into 15BB over bet? Seems like a fishy over bet to me? Would it make sense with A3 as an exploitative value over-bet? I would guess V AK should bet smaller as a value bet, blocking an unlikely 3x straight draw or flush draw or weaker K?

From the three hands I have already posted and many others I have seen V play this is an bluff/exploitative aggressive play.

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I agree. Somehow in my analysis I missed A3s (4 combos). I believe he would not bet 3/4 pot with it (except maybe diamonds) because it has showdown value, but that could be incorrect. That, still leaves him with about as many flush draws as monster hands, which means he is bluffing too often. But, still balanced enough to crush Replay elite stakes.


Not at all. Its the right size if the object is to shove most rivers without having to resort to a massive overbet. I have no idea how V is approaching the game so I can’t say whether he is pounding value, pressuring nitty face-up players with capped ranges or taking a more advanced approach. I can say that I found solver-approved lines that match his play in this hand. They require splitting ranges on the flop into 66% polarized (large bet) and 33% merged (small bet) rather than a 100% small bet with a perfectly merged range. If he’s using this strategy, I’d wonder why he’s playing here and not beating up 200NL on a cash site.

I took this hand as an opportunity to try out some new software (Simple Postflop) and study an interesting spot. I looked at this hand from the perspective of a 200BB SB open and BB 3! and as a 100BB SB limp and BB raise to 3x. The range considerations change wildly depending on which way you set it up preflop. IMO, the SB min-raise is nearly meaningless and could be considered a limp by the BB in this case.

Anyway, if we look at it as a raise and 3!, K9o falls way outside of the calling range and the hand should have ended right there. If we consider it to be a limp/call situation, then K9o remains in H’s range at 100BB effective. Because K9o stays in the range, so do all the Kxs hands that we don’t 4!. Facing a 75% c-bet on the flop (K42), K9o falls into our calling range. We do have a pretty robust x/r range vs this bet size which surprised me a bit. I would not have come up with some of the bluffing combos the solver played in order to make x/r a thing so I’m glad I looked at this spot.

Regardless, even if we played the flop in a balanced way we fold this hand on the turn (K42-5) facing another bet. It is so far down in our range that its not even a close call. Because we have all the Kxs that have picked up a 2nd pair or straight draw, K9o becomes part of the TP range we can safely ditch. We never see a river with it.

Why does any of this matter? Well, as I mentioned earlier, I don’t have enough data on V to know what he’s doing or why. Without that information, I really can’t come up with an exploitative counter strategy that isn’t a pure guess. The best I can do is fall back on the strategy that beats all other strategies (GTO-based) and passively exploit any deviations he may be making anywhere in the game tree. By playing the default strategy until I have enough information to introduce exploitative counters, I am making EV+ decisions without having to decipher V’s strategy.***

All of this may be Latin to most people and that’s 100% ok. There is a much simpler counter-move anyone can make: Do not sit to the immediate right of a player you don’t have an edge on. Certainly don’t do it deep-stacked. There are tons of softer games to be found. Game and seat selection will have more of an impact on your winrate than any complex strategy (until there are no soft spots left in the games you play).

*** Full disclaimer to head the accountant-hating crowd off at the pass: Yes, its not a perfect GTO strategy. We don’t know what that looks like and even if we did, no human could implement it. We are dealing with approximations and then we simplify to make them implementable while sacrificing very little EV. Its the best we can do and it’s demonstrably effective.


Thanks for the excellent analysis. Can you give some examples of surprising c-r bluffs that the solver had? I guess if it has all the Kx hands in its range then there are more value c-rs to balance out the bluffs.

Does that mean the solver is ok with having a limp-calling range that wide from the sb vs. Bb? What kinds of hands does it limp apart from kx? Does the range get much tighter at 200bbs deep?

As far as avoiding having one of the best players on the site on your immediate left 200bb deep with 1/6th of your bankroll on the table, that is great advice lol. But it’s also exactly what I’m trying to do here. It would be easy enough to sit at the lower elite stakes and just be profitable from value- based ABC poker, but where’s the fun in that?


Thanks for the analysis. So it can be a good advanced strategy & an exploit but the thing is I just dont see this much at 500/1M stakes on RP nor from V. I just don’t remember seeing overbetting used hardly at all by the elite players or V either. I have seen V many times make some massive river overbets that get caught bluffing. I’m sure V would also at times be making massive overbets with strong hands for value too. Overbet river bluffs seem to outweigh river value overbets from the many hands I’ve seen.

I will scour through some hands to see if I can find some overbet turn bets etc. How often do you see overbetting on the turn and a reasonable overbet shove on the river on RP & on cash sites by very strong players? How often is the river overbet shove value Vs bluff. I guess to some extent we can only speculate. As much as it can be a good advanced strategy I just havent seen it from V at 500/1M but maybe V plays a slightly different strategy at 250/500k.

From my perspective the river overbet shove is supposed to look like a bluff that was setup by the turn over bet. Knowing that & calling the turn preparing Hero call many river shoves I think K3s makes an ok river Hero call.


I really find the turn overbet that is followed by a river shove perplexing & interesting.

I think the turn overbet could make sense but a shove on the river IMO doesn’t make sense with A3 straight. I think V needs to make a reasonable value bet that gets called but maybe Vendetta is a gansta debt collector that always gets paid!


As you originally said 67 makes a lot of sense to me especially with the turn overbet and maybe a river shove value bet makes more sense.

I agree that it feels like villain is bluffing too often but Im probably tainted by a lot of hands I’ve watched V play. Considering this hand though I cant see many hands SB pays V off with.

I’m not entirely sure why V says they wont have many flush draws on the flop. Are they checking most flopped flush draws or just Cbetting a smaller size? I think Vendetta is trying to tell you a plausible story at the table:
Flop: “Hey I didn’t flop a flush draw, im pretty strong!”
Turn: “ok, I’m overbetting to save you chips, so just fold cause i got a monster!”
River: “I tried to warn you, just FOLD!”

And now the story is: “ok so I lied that time but next time you gotta believe the story I try to tell you cause I’m an honest poker player, especially at the table.”

GTO & solvers may say fold but I think experience playing with Vendetta says no.

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I think the players who crush replay at least (not sure if it translates to other games) can make those big bets for value too. Some may be bluffing too much, but I’ve definitely lost 200+bbs in similar lines with flush vs nut flush or trying to hero with top pair, not against this specific player but against top 10 players here. They are banking on players calling too much and on their loose image.

Just for the record, I love accountants!

I don’t mind opening K9o when isolated blind v blind, but would use a bigger sizing. I’m also not folding to the small-ish 3!, especially against such a high aggro player. Anyone who joined in June and has over 5 billion chips is a high aggro player, you don’t do that by playing passively.

You flopped top pair, on a board he probably missed, of course you should check-raise. AA, KK, or AK would have mostly 3! bigger, what are you afraid of? KQ, KJ, maybe KT, but you block a lot of those. V would expect you to 4! KK and AA (and maybe a few others) pre, but you do have a fair number of hands you could have for value there, and you could also have better draws. In other words, he can’t beat a fair number of your bluffs.

I know the new kids turn up their noses at old school stuff, but some of it is still valid. Sklansky’s Fundamental Theorem comes to mind in this hand. Would you check-raise that flop if you could see his hole cards? I would.

No offense intended Joe, but if you are afraid to call the river on that runout, you can’t afford to play those stakes. Yeah, there are a few hands that beat you, but not that many. Take the lead on the flop, fire again on the turn, and take your chances. The line you took is just throwing chips away.