Shoving post flop

So I’ve seen this happen quite a lot, specifically in MTTs:

Only a few preflop callers with no raises, and the pot is very small. At the flop, one player decides to go all in. It doesn’t matter if it’s early in the tourney, or mid-tourney or even late, and everyone has a decent stack. There’s this one person who decides to go all in with about 100BB when the pot is about 4-5BB. I used to think this is just bad betting, but recently I’ve seen both experienced and inexperienced players do it.

Examples: A pot of 200 chips and a bet of 5000 chips at the flop. A pot of 150 chips and a bet of 10000 chips at the flop. etc…

And the scenarios are:
-Most of the time everyone else folds and the player ends up winning the small pot, yay!
-Sometimes they get a caller with a better hand and get busted out or lose a huge chunk of their stack.
-Sometimes they get a caller and win his/her stack or double up.
The latter happens the least because normally a caller would have a very solid hand to call the huge bet, otherwise they fold.

I’ve asked some players who do it why they bet so big on such small pots, and most of them said they just don’t want to get rivered by an underdog. But are such small pots really worth the trouble? Isn’t the goal to win more chips as opposed to just make everyone fold and not win much?

So my question is, when is it ok to make such huge bets over very small pots? I used to think the answer is never, but what do others think?

Here’s an example:

Hand #448703223

Bingo thread redux?

Honestly, “not wanting to get outdrawn” is just a horrible reason. Bank a small profit if you’re ahead and lose your stack when you’re behind. Experience doesn’t mean a thing if all your experience is the wrong type. For example, I’m very experienced at getting my wife angry. That’s doesn’t qualify me to give marriage advice.

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With certain hands, on certain types of flops, against certain players, it can be a very effective strategy.
There are many players who will risk their entire stack on a flush draw. I don’t mind giving them the opportunity.


Overbet shoving on the flop like this virtually forces your opponents to play perfectly (call only with very strong hands, fold the rest). We want to make it easy for them to make mistakes, not easy to play well.


Sometimes you explicitly want people out of a hand. If you’re playing a bunch of weak players, that’s one way of doing it.

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So is it worth the risk? If you just want some players out of the hand, is it ok to risk all your stack over a few chips in the pot? Remember this is a tourney, you can’t rebuy.

If you have them covered, it can be. It depends on your table presence and the aggression of the other players. If you’ve got a bunch of maniacs who call anything, it probably won’t work. But if you’ve presented yourself as a tight/nit and everyone else is pretty passive, you can usually get away with it. It works for my play style and table presence, anyway.


Betting in poker is a language all it’s own,
where every word is a homophone.

The key is to understand that betting reveals information, about the better’s hand, and the response to the bet reveals information about everyone else’s hand.

What’s a big overbet mean?

Could mean: I have the nuts!
Might mean: I have the best hand right now, but I’m afraid of draws so I want to shut this hand down right now!
Might mean: I have nothing, but I want you to think I have the nuts!

Usually this is to say that you’re not begging to be called. But if you call, you’re not going to find out for sure what you just heard your opponent say. To narrow it down, you’re going to need to raise. That can get expensive, but a little spent early may save a lot later if you teach them you’re willing to call. If you can’t afford it, then you’ll have to fold, but if you can afford to be wrong, consider raising, and see what happens next. If they have the nuts, they’ll re-raise you, or call. If they’re just plain nuts, they might also call or more likely raise. If they’re afraid of a draw, they might call or they might lay down. If they have nothing, they’re going to fold.

Of course if they’re an unskilled player, who knows what they’re saying, or if they even know they’re saying anything.

Which is it? That’s what having table history on an opponent is for. Pay attention to how they’re playing, and what happens in showdowns or when they show their cards.

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Many reasons that deal with “table presence” apply, but the over riding factor is either being crippled or busted out, if you make the wrong read on that person. As you said, no rebuys, if you’re wrong, you’re prolly gone …

Even early in a MTT, you tell the table that … 1. you believe you have the best cards once you see the flop, 2. the turn and the river won’t scare you…moreover 3. you are more than willing to risk everything… because you have the best hand… and 4. if its a bluff, you’re crazy enough to risk everything… so litterally you could have anything…

Hey, sometimes the flop just doesn’t scare you,
and with AA you just wanna buy the pot… :sunglasses:

None of these reasons have anything to do with the size
of the pot… or lack there-of.


In the early stages of a MTT anything can and may happen. People are lazy and it takes a bit more work on ReplayPoker to size a bet, rather than hit the all-in button. People think they are probably ahead and want to apply maximum intimidation factor to make opponents fold. If opponent has flopped a set or two pair, then they probably will not, but there you go. On the other hand, when a player goes all in on the flop in a limped pot, you can never be certain they have not hit a set on the flop. In any case, within the first ten minutes of most MTTs, I would estimate that 20% of the players bust out. Similarly, if you are dealt AA and shove preflop, you are nearly always called by a somebody or two, usually with a hand something like Q9 suited, which opponent just cannot lay down, so this presents a good opportunity to double or triple up and start your tournament in a good way. The early leaders in tournaments are usually the beneficiaries of this kind of play.