Here’s the hand:
4-seat ring, 500/1k, full table.
History: I had just watched the two players seated behind me go all-in, in a hand where KJ had top two pair on the Turn, and unfortunately for the aggressor, they lost on the river as his opponent filled the backdoor gutshot Broadway straight they were drawing to.
This was literally the previous hand played to the one we’re looking at here, and when I observed how the betting was going on this pot, I decided to sit out the next hand in order to watch how it went down, to see if these players were playing wild, or if they were playing sound strategy.
The loser had checked top pair from early position, having hit top pair on the flop with their KJo, 3-clubs to the backdoor flush, and when ATs bet into the pot, they raised, and got called. Turn gives him top two pair, erases the flush draw, and they put in a second pot-size bet, which ATs calls with their gutshot draw, which they then filled on the river. KJ was nearly all-in to bet pot on the Turn, and probably should have just put it all in to put maximum fold equity in front of him. On the river, they’re beaten and bet the rest of their stack into the nuts, which calls, and they lose a stack.
It’s hard to find fault with either player – ATs called drawing to the nuts and got there despite not having very good drawing odds to do so, and it’s just a bad runout for KJo, who would have been better off with just top pair, and apart from not shoving on the Turn (which I think the winner would have called anyway, as it was only another 12k more) or on the Flop (which would have been way too early and too aggressive, considering they could have been behind against a set) I don’t see either of them as having played the hand particularly out of line. If anything, the winner of the hand had played it pretty badly, but got super lucky to hit runner-runner fills for his gutshot backdoor nut straight draw.
Prior to that hand, the action at the table would be best described as fairly sedate, cautious, and a lot of checking with the occasional mid-size pot going down when two players had something.
With me sitting out, another player seated at the table but sitting out, and the loser of that hand busting, action didn’t re-commence until they had had enough time to reload. My decision to sit out next when I saw the action come alive effectively paused the table, allowing for the loser to reload during the brief break in the action. I came back in for the hand as well, just in time to get dealt my hole cards.
I have AQs (diamonds) in the SB. Nice, but being out of position here, having just seen a huge pot go down the previous hand, I feel a little cautious. UTG limps, the button is still sitting out, and I definitely feel with AQs I need to raise here, but I’m expecting the player who just re-bought may want to switch up their play to be more maniacal, more aggressive, in order to prevent being drawn out on again. I raise it to 4k, and SB, BB both call.
5d7dKc – I have the nut flush draw. I opt to check and see what V1 and V2 do. BB checks, UTG bets pot. I’m prepared to call, and do so, thinking that my decision to check was smart because if V’s betting pot here, he’s probably raising if I had opened.
BB raises behind me from 12k to 60k. This is exactly what I was expecting a player who had just gotten stacked and had gone on tilt might do. I have no idea if he’s just trying to bluff with air to steal the pot, or if he really has something. Whatever he has, it’s probably not drawing to a better hand than the nut flush. I feel like I likely have the nut advantage here, but I can’t rule out him having something like KK, although I certainly would have expected him to play it much differently preflop if he did. So what other options might there be? Lesser sets: 55, 77. Lesser flush draws: any two diamonds. Possibly a high King, like AxKd, and maybe something like 86, especially 86s diamonds, drawing to a straight flush.
UTG shoves behind the raise, and now I have a big decision to make. The pot is huge, and I think I have the right odds to call for my draw, but am I ahead or behind here? UTG’s shove here indicates they’ve also got a very strong hand, and probably the same range as the BB is playing here.
I have no made hand yet, just A-high, nut flush draw, so I recognize that I’m almost certainly behind both players here, and definitely behind at least one of them. But I also have the best flush draw, two streets to try to hit it. So I have 35% equity here, and that’s only a little better than 1 in 3, and I’m in a 3-way hand where I’d expect I’d have 1 in 3 odds to win the hand anyway, absent any additional information.
At the point UTG pushes all-in, the total pot size is 319875, and it’s most of my chips to call, but I have the bet covered. It’s 212375 for me to call to win a pot that would then be worth about 520000, but I’m assuming very likely that BB is also calling with half their stack already in the middle, and if so their contribution would make the pot 581250, which would mean 36.5% pot odds, meaning it’s actually a good call to make drawing to the nut flush. And if they don’t call, the pot’s still enough that I should call with the odds I’m being given, I think.
I do make the call, and we all flip up for the Turn. Holding most other flush draws, I probably fold, fearing the nut flush draw will draw out ahead of me if I play for a lesser flush. But maybe I find a call here with KdXd for top pair, 2nd nut flush draw – maybe, but probably not. If I’m not holding it, I’m guessing one of my opponents would have the Ad here.
BB shows Kh5s, for top/bottom two pair; UTG shows Ks5h, also making him top/bottom two pair. Both are therefore ahead of me and drawing to a full house, but fortunately for me they’re blocking each other, there’s only one more K and one more 5 in the deck, so just two bad cards for me, while I’m looking to hit any diamond, of which there are: 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 9, T, J. Kd is bad for me, and the 5c is bad for me. Otherwise, the only way I can win the hand is for the board to run out AA, or A7. Everything else in the deck is meaningless.
The Turn brings me the flush, as the 8d hits, and now I’m ahead unless they river one of their two out cards.
All the chips are in the middle already, so it’s just a matter of riding it out, and the last card is the Js, a brick, and I take the hand. I stack both opponents.
When I made the call on the flop, I was 36% to win, and my opponents were 64% to chop. When the Turn filled for me, I became a 95% favorite to win the hand. My two opponents blocking each other amounted to an extra 4% likelihood of my flush holding up.
At the end of the hand, I am sitting at a table with three players sitting out: two with no chips left, probably to be reloading soon, and I expect to face heightened aggression from both of them for a bit, and probably I won’t get this lucky repeatedly, although I could certainly stick around and try to outplay them. But I feel like I’ve gotten my enjoyment out of this table, so I don’t wait for them to reload, and exit the table.